Po­lice wor­ried by re­ports of far-right at­tacks on is­lands

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

The Greek Po­lice (ELAS) is keep­ing a close eye on the sit­u­a­tion at Aegean is­lands host­ing mi­grant camps amid re­ports that mem­bers of far-right groups have been in­volved in at least two as­saults against fa­cil­i­ties, Kathimerini un­der­stands.

At­tacks on the Souda camp on Chios over the past few days in­volved as­sailants lob­bing Molo­tov cock­tails and stones, and co­in­cided with a trip to the is­land by MPs of Greece’s neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party and Bel­gium’s far-right Vlaams Be­lang.

Lo­cal res­i­dents on Chios, as well as Samos and other is­lands where re­cep­tion cen­ters are over­crowded and tense, are press­ing for mi­grants to be moved to the main­land.

How­ever, Mi­gra­tion Min­is­ter Yian­nis Mouza­las said last week that mi­grants can­not be moved en masse to the main­land as that would en­cour­age more to come over from Tur­key and po­ten­tially test an agree­ment be­tween Ankara and the Euro­pean Union for the re­turn of mi­grants ar­riv­ing in Greece. “It would mean the col­lapse of the EU-Tur­key pact,” he told re­porters last week. “The next day the is­lands would be en­gulfed by a new wave of mi­grants.”

Ten­sions are par­tic­u­larly high on Chios fol­low­ing up­heaval at the camp there amid re­ports of provo­ca­tion by far-right pro­test­ers. Is­lan­ders who work at the fa­cil­ity are re­luc­tant to re­turn to their jobs, ac­cord­ing to lo­cal re­ports. Mouza­las, mean­while, has pro­posed the cre­ation of a larger camp be­fore the cur­rent one can close.

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