Migrant testimonies point to a recurring practice of illegal pushbacks from Greece

International President of MSF Christos Christou, left, speaks next to Greek journalist Panos Charitos, during a news conference organised by the Doctors Without Borders, in Athens, on Thursday. A leading international medical charity says it has received scores of testimonies over the past two years from migrants that point to a "recurring practice" of alleged secret, illegal and often brutal deportations back to Turkey from two eastern Greek islands. [AP/Petros Giannakouris]

A leading international medical charity alleged Thursday that testimony from dozens of migrants over the past two years points to a "recurring practice" of secret, illegal and often brutal deportations back to Turkey from two eastern Greek islands.

Doctors Without Borders said in a new report that the 50 accounts it collected said the forced returns were carried out by uniformed Greek officers or unknown masked individuals.

The report follows charges by charities, activists and Turkish authorities, who alleged similar actions in the Aegean Sea and at Greece's northeastern land border with Turkey.

Athens has strongly denied such so-called "pushbacks," and argues that its coast guard has saved hundreds of thousands of migrants from the Middle East and Africa who attempted to reach Greece by crossing in small boats from Turkey.

Greece says it needs to...

Continue reading on: