More than 2,300 irregular migrants were deported from Cyprus to their countries of origin in 2021, double the amount over the last two years.
Police spokesperson Christos Andreou told the Cyprus News Agency (CNA) that in 2018, 695 deportations took place, while in 2019, it was 417.
In 2020, the number of deportation carried out tripled to 1,272, while almost doubling again in 2021 to 2,320.
The police, in cooperation with the Interior Ministry, conducted various operations, especially during last year, to find illegal immigrants in Cyprus.
He noted that these operations take place all over the island, particularly in areas where there are a lot of immigrants.
Andreou said most illegal migrants cross from the Turkish-occupied areas north to the Republic through the dividing Green Line.
Only last month, the interior and foreign ministries, in cooperation with the government of Vietnam, repatriated 258 Vietnamese nationals who were staying illegally in Cyprus.
The 17 December repatriations were voluntary, and all 258 left Cyprus on a special flight.
“Through bilateral agreements with third countries and strengthening the cooperation of Cyprus with international and European organisations such as Frontex, we are trying to maximise returns,” an Interior Ministry statement said.
More voluntary return flights are planned for the future.