Greeks to launch anti-migrant rally amid surge in crossings from Turkey

Local residents of a number of northwestern towns in Greece are preparing to stage an anti-migrant rally at a crossing on the Greek-Turkish border in response to increasing arrivals from Turkey, Greek newspaper Kathimerini said on Sunday.

Residents from Komotini, Alexandroupoli and Didymoteicho will hold a protest at the Kipoi crossing at the border, Kathimerini said.

Migrant crossings from Turkey to Greece have dramatically increased over the last couple of months as bilateral relations between the two countries have deteriorated due to a dispute over the hydrocarbon resources in the eastern Mediterranean.

Turkey and the EU agreed on a refugee deal in 2016 to cut the influx of Syrian refugees arriving in Greece. A key provision of the deal was that immigrants arriving on Greek islands would be returned to Turkey unless they applied for and received asylum in Greece.

However, the Turkish government has been facing the pressure of growing anti-Syrian sentiments inside the country and trying to find ways to solve the problem.

Turkey is home to 3.6 million refugees

Meanwhile, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has repeatedly threatened to open the gates of migration to Europe after various disputes with the European countries.