Türkiye's coast guard saved the lives of irregular migrants in the Aegean Sea after they were pushed to the Turkish side by Greek forces, the country's National Defense Ministry said Monday.

A Turkish navy drone recorded footage of the Greek forces pushing the migrants from Rhodes Island on July 24 to Türkiye's Marmaris city, the ministry said in a tweet.

The situation was immediately reported to the Turkish Coast Guard Command and the migrants were rescued, it added.

Ankara and international human rights groups have repeatedly condemned Greece's illegal practice of pushing back asylum seekers, saying it violates humanitarian values and international law by endangering the lives of vulnerable people, including women and children.

Türkiye has been a key transit point for irregular migrants who want to cross to Europe to start new lives, especially those fleeing war and persecution in their countries.

Türkiye already hosts 4 million refugees, more than any other country in the world.