Un­rest at mi­grant fa­cil­ity on Chios

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

A fresh bout of un­rest broke out at one of the re­cep­tion cen­ters for mi­grants on the Aegean is­land of Chios yes­ter­day af­ter heavy rain led to wide­spread flood­ing that soaked the tents of many refugee fam­i­lies.

The wors­en­ing of the al­ready sub­stan­dard liv­ing con­di­tions for mi­grants set off a new round of tense scuf­fles be­tween mi­grants of dif­fer­ent eth­nic back­grounds, who are frus­trated at de­lays in the pro­cess­ing of their asy­lum ap­pli­ca­tions.

Greek gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials have ap­pealed to the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion for more asy­lum ex­perts to ac­cel­er­ate the process on the is­lands but the ad­di­tional staff is yet to ar­rive.

In an in­ter­view with Ger­man news­pa­per Stuttgarter Zeitung, Greece’s Mi­gra­tion Min­is­ter Yian­nis Mouza­las ex­pressed con­cern about the coun­try’s abil­ity to cope with the refugee cri­sis, warn­ing that “Greece’s Aegean is­lands will grad­u­ally turn into the El­lis Is­land of the EU,” re­fer­ring to the gate­way for mil­lions of im­mi­grants to the United States in the late 19th and early 20th cen­turies.

The in­flux of mi­grants into Greece from Turkey is nowhere close to the lev­els seen a year ago but hun- dreds are ar­riv­ing ev­ery week. A to­tal of 156 landed on the is­lands of the east­ern Aegean be­tween Thurs­day and yes­ter­day morn­ing.

In a re­lated de­vel­op­ment, par­ents of chil­dren at­tend­ing a pri­mary school in Ther­mopy­les, cen­tral Greece, de­cided yes­ter­day to oc­cupy the school grounds on Mon­day in protest at plans to have 90 refugee chil­dren start af­ter­noon classes on that day.

Golden Dawn spokesman Ilias Ka­sidiaris (right) and MP Ilias Pana­gio­taros (cen­ter) peer through the gates of the site slated for Athens’s first mosque fol­low­ing a po­lice raid yes­ter­day that re­moved nationalist squat­ters from the premises.

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