Erdogan indicates pathway to citizenship for Syrian refugees in Turkey

Published July 3rd, 2016 - 05:30 GMT
Syrian refugees wait for other family members to cross the border into Turkey. (AFP/File)
Syrian refugees wait for other family members to cross the border into Turkey. (AFP/File)

Millions of Syrians living in Turkey will have a chance to become citizens of the country that gave them shelter, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced on Saturday. 

Speaking in the southern Turkish province of Kilis, which borders Syria and hosts more than 120,000 Syrians, Erdogan said that many of the Syrians now in Turkey want to become citizens of the Republic of Turkey. 

Although Syrians in Turkey don't receive some of the protections offered to asylum-seekers in Europe, including free housing, some would rather stay in Turkey because it's closer to home, they understand the culture, and it's easier to find work. 

"There are steps our Interior Ministry has taken on the issue,” he said. 

"We will give the chance to [acquire] citizenship by helping out these brothers and sisters by monitoring through offices set up by the ministry," Erdogan said. 

Around 2.7 million Syrians who have fled the conflict in their country are now living throughout Turkey. 

Editor's note: This article has been edited from the source material.


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