NGOs fear­ful of hand­ing is­land camps to state

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

Seven top NGOs aid­ing refugees in Greece have is­sued a joint state­ment ex­press­ing their con­cerns over the han­dover of re­spon­si­bil­i­ties at mi­grant camps on the Greek is­lands to the gov­ern­ment as of Au­gust 1.

The NGOs say the Greek gov­ern­ment has re­leased few de­tails about how it plans to con­tinue pro­vid­ing ex­ist­ing as­sis­tance to res­i­dents at the camps. A de­te­ri­o­ra­tion of liv­ing con­di­tions and di­min­ished ac­cess to es­sen­tial ser­vices are the main con­cerns cited if the Greek gov­ern­ment does not com­mu­ni­cate a plan to the NGOs be­fore the han­dover.

Since the start of the year, more than 9,500 refugees and mi­grants have ar­rived on the Greek is­lands, where nearly 14,000 are cur­rently stranded. “With­out a tran­si­tional plan, vul­ner­a­ble men, women and chil­dren will be put at greater risk,” the state­ment said.

A black-winged stilt hatch­ling takes its first un­easy steps out­side the nest on a beach near Ar­gos in the north­ern Pelo­pon­nese, yes­ter­day. The long-legged wader is a mi­gra­tory species that comes from north­ern Europe to the warmer climes of Greece in the sum­mer to nest.

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