The Annual Report of the Recording Mechanism of Incidents of Informal Forced Returns is Out

On 24 January 2024, the Greek National Commission for Human Rights presented its annual report including the findings of the ‘Recording Mechanism of Incidents of Informal Forced Returns’ from Greece to Turkiye, also known as pushbacks.

According to the sample of testimonies gathered through the Recording Mechanism between 2020 to 2022, the number of the people mentioned of pushbacks from Greece amounts to a minimum of 2.157 persons. These persons also reported that they were subjected to physical violence, verbal abuse and threats to their lives and physical integrity often at gunpoint, sexual harassment, degrading treatment, deprivation of personal belongings and identity documents, informal detention in places under humiliating conditions, separation of family members, and, in some cases, even losses of human lives.

The majority of the people mentioned are unregistered asylum seekers who were unlawfully returned to Turkiye without their personal data being recorded by the Greek Authorities, as well as 5 recognised refugees in Greece from Syria and Palestine and asylum seekers who had a pending application with the Greek Asylum service. 

Most importantly, the report concludes that informal forced returns or pushbacks from Greece are carried out by mobilising human resources, facilities, heavy vehicles or watercrafts and other material and technical means and that they do ‘no longer constitute an occasional and irregular phenomenon’ but have on the contrary ‘developed the pattern of a systematic and organised operation’.

Full report could be found here or could be downloaded in PDF format below:

Press Release available here:


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