At least 24 irregular migrants were held in different parts of Turkey on Thursday, sources said.

Nine Iranian nationals were held in the Beyazkoy district of the northwestern Tekirdag province, close to the border with Greece.

They were found on a bus stopped for a check by gendarmerie personnel, said the sources, asking not to be named due to restrictions on speaking to the media.

The vehicle’s driver, a Turkish national identified by the initials I.O., was arrested.

In the central Nigde province, 15 Syrian nationals were held after police teams stopped and searched a bus on a highway connecting southeast Turkey to Istanbul, the sources added.

Two Turkish citizens accused of involvement in human trafficking were arrested.

Turkey has been a key transit point for asylum seekers aiming to cross into Europe to start new lives, especially those fleeing war and persecution.

It hosts nearly 4 million refugees, including some 3.6 million Syrians, more than any other country in the world.

*Writing by Dilara Hamit, Ahmet Gencturk in Ankara

Copyright 2022 Anadolu Agency. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.