IZMIR, Turkey  

Turkey rescued 56 asylum seekers Friday who sought help in the Aegean Sea, according to security sources.

The asylum seekers, who were in a rubber boat, were rescued by the Turkish coast guard off Izmir province, said the sources, who asked not to be named due to restrictions on speaking to the media.

The naval force saved the foreign nationals and took them on board their boat.

The asylum seekers, including women and children, were then taken to the provincial immigration office for legal processes.

Turkey has been one of the main routes for asylum seekers wanting to reach Europe, especially since Syria’s civil war started in 2011.

It hosts nearly four million Syrians, more than any other country in the world.

*Writing by Erdogan Cagatay Zontur in Ankara

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