MUGLA, Turkey 

The Turkish Coast Guard rescued 14 asylum seekers off the Aegean coast, according to security sources on Monday.

A coast guard team was dispatched off the coast of Marmaris in the southwestern Mugla province after learning that the asylum seekers were stranded on a dinghy due to an engine breakdown.

They were taken into a coast guard boat and brought to the port of Marmaris, said the sources, who asked not to be named due to restrictions on speaking to the media.

Later, the asylum seekers were transferred to the provincial migration office.

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.

The country opened its gates earlier this year to asylum seekers seeking to cross to Europe, accusing the European Union of failing to keep its promises under a 2016 migrant deal.

* Writing by Jeyhun Aliyev from Ankara

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