Turkey asks EU for help as it hosts 3.7 million Syrians, fears wave of Afghans fleeing Taliban rule

Turkey does not have the capacity to deal with a possible new refugee wave from Afghanistan, the Turkish president told German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier in a telephone call on Tuesday, the Associated Press reports.

During the call, Recep Tayyip Erdogan also said Germany and other European Union nations should provide assistance to Afghanistan’s neighbors to help them as “they bear the burden of the Afghan migration,” according to a statement from the Turkish leader’s office.

Turkey, which already hosts the world’s largest refugee population, including 3.7 million Syrians, is concerned about a potential influx of refugees fleeing the Taliban. Anti-migrant sentiment has been running high in Turkey as it grapples with economic woes, including high unemployment, that have been exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic.

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