The number will reach 25,000 to 30,000 in the coming days. Turkey can no longer cope with the large numbers of people fleeing the Syrian civil war, Erdogan said.
Greece has announced it has blocked thousands of migrants from entering “illegally” from Turkey, law enforcement using tear gas to disperse the crowd.
Erdogan’s decision comes after dozens of Turkish soldiers died following a bombing in the Syrian province of Idlib. Turkey hopes to force the EU and NATO to support its military operation in Syria, where frequent clashes with the Syrian army supported by Russia are taking place.
Turkey is home to 3.7 million Syrian refugees, as well as migrants from other countries, such as Afghanistan, which has stopped moving to Europe in a deal with the EU. But Erdogan has accused the EU of breaking his promises.