News Feed

October 26, 2016 - Debt burden still a fiscal drag –– Forte No need for wild celebrations! That ... +++ October 26, 2016 - It’s Rubbish! Fresh from a recent bout of illness ... +++ October 26, 2016 - Pollard hits back Kieron Pollard has challenged the W ... +++ October 26, 2016 - Still hurting At one point Tuesday, Kenville Mayn ... +++ October 25, 2016 - Falling growth Government’s hopes of a near two ... +++ October 25, 2016 - Woeful Windies ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates  ... +++

GREECE – 2,500 migrants saved over three days

ATHENS –– Greece’s coastguard has rescued about 2,500 migrants and refugees off the country’s eastern islands over the past three days, authorities said today, as the flow of people trying to cross into Europe continued unabated.

Greece has seen a surge in the number of refugees arriving by rubber dinghies from neighbouring Turkey, with aid agencies estimating about 2,000 crossing over daily this month. Most hail from conflict-ridden places such as Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.

A migrant child  seen through a bus window following his arrival onboard the Eleftherios Venizelos passenger ship at the port of Piraeus near Athens, Greece, on Saturday.

A migrant child seen through a bus window following his arrival onboard the Eleftherios Venizelos passenger ship at the port of Piraeus near Athens, Greece, on Saturday.

The numbers of migrants being picked up by the coastguard have been rising steadily over the past week and the figures for the past three days are at the higher end
of those seen this summer, a coastguard official said.

All interceptions of migrant boats in Greek waters are classified as coastguard rescues even if the vessels are not in any danger or need any help.

After a hiatus of a few days last week, Greek authorities resumed ferrying Syrian refugees to the mainland by ship on Saturday and the latest group of 2,500 refugees arrived at the port of Piraeus earlier today.

Most of them are expected to make their way to the Macedonian border as part of their journey into northern Europe, suggesting larger crowds could amass at the border in the coming days after numbers shrank last week.

Tensions peaked at the Greek-Macedonian border this month when Macedonian police fired teargas and stun grenades to drive back angry crowds. Overwhelmed Macedonian authorities later gave up and have since allowed refugees to cross over.

Conditions at the Greek-Macedonian border remain calm at the moment, but a new flare-up of tensions could emerge if Hungary closed its borders, Stathis Kyrousis, head of Doctors Without Borders’ migration operations in the Balkans told Reuters.

Hungary –– which has been scrambling to reinforce borders to cope with the migrant influx –– plans to tighten migration laws this week and set up holding camps near Serbia.

“If Hungary closes its borders, there is a greater chance that Skopje will follow and this will make tensions more likely,” he said.

More than 300,000 people have crossed the Mediterranean this year, including nearly 181,500 arriving in Greece and 108,500 in Italy, according to the UN High Commissioner For Refugees.

An average of 1,700 migrants crossed into Greece daily in July, with the number topping 2,000 daily in August, Kyrousis said. The arrivals in recent days were continuing at the higher end of levels seen this summer, with 4,000 people arriving on the island of Lesbos on Saturday alone, he said.

Source: (Reuters)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *