Wednesday, November 29

Refugees and migrants housands flee migrant camp after deliberate fire



Refugees and migrants stand at the closed gate of the Moria migrant camp, after a fire at the facility, on the island of Lesbos, Greece, September 19, 2016 Up to 4,000 people have fled one of the main migrant camps on the Greek island of Lesbos after a large fire broke out.

Police said there was “no doubt” it was lit deliberately by some of those inside the Moria facility and the blaze was getting worse because winds were fanning the flames.

No one was believed to have been injured in the fire which damaged tents and housing units. But among those who had to evacuate the camp were 150 youngsters who were moved to a children’s village on Lesbos.

Some 5,400 migrants and refugees live on Lesbos – the main destination for over a million people who made it to Greece’s eastern islands from Turkey since early 2015.

Human rights activists have been critical of the condition of the Greek migrant camps, claiming there is overcrowding as well as unsanitary living conditions.

Migrant camp fire on Lesbos They say the situation is particularly serious on Lesbos and other eastern Aegean islands facing Turkey, where most of the migrants arrive and are held for registration.

The system is part of an EU-Turkey deal aimed at limiting the flow of refugees and migrants to Greece.

There have been long delays in processing asylum requests which have often caused tensions at Moria between different ethnic groups.

There are more than 60,000 refugees and migrants in Greece, most of them trying to get to Germany and other affluent EU countries after fleeing conflict and poverty.

But they are unable to do so after several eastern European and Balkan states shut their borders earlier this year.