An unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) footage on Friday showed a Greek coast guard ship leaving irregular migrants in the Aegean to die in the open sea, while Turkish coastal security forces lending them a helping hand.

The footage includes moments when Greek coast guard boats forced the irregular migrants — whom they transferred from a ship to two inflatable boats north of the Rhodes Island in the Aegean Sea — into Turkish territorial waters.

It also shows Turkish Coast Guard units coming to the aid of the migrants.

Later in the footage, the irregular migrants taken on board are then brought ashore.

Recent months have seen multiple reports of Greek forces illegally pushing back boats of asylum seekers, endangering the passengers in the process.

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

Earlier this year, Turkey opened its gates to irregular migrants, accusing the EU of failing to keep its promises under a 2016 migrant deal.

Turkey hosts nearly 4 million Syrians, more than any other country in the world.

* Writing by Merve Berker

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