Greece To Build 2 Temporary Migrant Camps On Mainland As Islands Overcrowded - Reports

Greece to Build 2 Temporary Migrant Camps on Mainland as Islands Overcrowded - Reports

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 10th September, 2019) The Greek authorities plan to create two additional camps on the country's mainland to accommodate migrants and refugees, which will be relocated there from the overcrowded islands, as a temporary measure to serve as "transit" centers for those of them slated for further transfer to other facilities, Greek media reported on Tuesday, citing the Citizens' Protection Ministry.

The surge of new migrant arrivals on the Greek islands from neighboring Turkey over the past weeks has prompted the Greek authorities to start transferring asylum seekers from the overcrowded reception facilities to the mainland, albeit at insignificant rates and speed.

One of the camps will be located in a disused military base in Karavomylos and the other one will be added to an already existing pre-departure facility in Corinth, according to the Ekathimerini newspaper.

The facilities will reportedly start operating by the end of September and will serve as temporary "transit" points for families of migrants who have been on the islands for a year or more.

The camps are expected to consist of large tents with a capacity of up to 50 people at a time and host a total of 900 migrants. In the future, the Greek government intends to build additional camps that would ultimately take in up to 4,000 asylum seekers from the islands, the newspaper added.

Amid the surge of arrivals, Greece struggles to provide adequate lodging and living conditions for all the newcomers and blames Turkey for failing to curb the migrant inflow to Greece, as per the 2016 EU-Turkey deal on migration. For example, the Moria camp on the island of Lesvos was initially designed to accommodate 3,000 people, but its population grew to as many as 9,000 in 2018. Last week, hundreds of unaccompanied children among Moria's residents initiated violent unrest, demanding that they be immediately transferred to mainland Greece.

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