Frontex launches investigation into alleged illegal pushbacks of migrants

Frontex launches investigation into alleged illegal pushbacks of migrants

The European Union’s border agency, Frontex, on Tuesday announced that it is conducting an investigation into media reports of alleged illegal pushbacks of migrants and refugees in the Aegean.

It is noted that no documents or other materials have been found to substantiate any accusations of violations of the law or the Frontex Code of Conduct by deployed officers.

“I informed EU Commissioner Ylva Johansson that we are looking into the accusations levelled by several news organizations related to our activities at Greece’s external borders. We aim to uphold the highest border guarding standards in all of our operations and do not tolerate any violations of the fundamental rights in any of our activities,” Frontex Executive Director Fabrice Leggeri said.

“We remain committed to providing support to Greece at its external borders in line with our mandate and in the spirit of EU solidarity, in full respect of fundamental rights and international law,” he added.

The European border agency said the situation in the Eastern Aegean “was confusing” for Frontex vessels due to the disagreement between Greece and Turkey over their maritime borders,” adding that has also affected search and rescue activities in the area.”

The announcement also mentioned that Frontex had asked Greek authorities to investigate two incidents in the Eastern Aegean “in the context of operational dialogue” and that no evidence of wrongdoing had been found in one case, while the investigation for the other was still ongoing. It also clarified that the investigation underway has found no other suspect cases apart from those already reported to Greek authorities.

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