Greece agrees to accommodate refugees

27 October 2015
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Greece said that the European Union had offered to pay the costs of housing 20,000 additional refugees in temporary camps on its islands as part of the EU’s efforts to manage the refugee flow. So far, more than 500,000 migrants have transited through Greece after a perilous Aegean Sea crossing from Turkey in their efforts to flee from Syria’s civil war. Their goal is to move ashore to wealthier destinations in northern Europe.

Greece made it clear that it would provide shelter to refugees as part of the EU’s new 17-point action plan that includes UN-aided accomodation for 100,000 people. Of these people, 50,000 would remain in Greece on the condition that the EU offered aid to facilitate this and as long as those who were temporarily housed would then be relocated to other countries.

Migration Minister Ioannis Mouzalas told Skai radio that Greece managed to extract the pledge that the EU would finance the refugees’ accommodation. The facilities would be set up according to financing.

Earlier, during a news conference Mouzalas said that Russian bombardments in Aleppo, Syria, have increased the influx in recent days. He said that the best way to deal with the crisis would be to resettle refugees directly from Turkish camps to EU states, hence easing the transit crisis and making the crossing safer.

On his part, European Commission Vice President Valdis Dombrovskis pledged more cash for Greece to deal with refugees. He told a press conference that the European Commission is “willing to find additional means of supporting those countries which are most expos3ed to the refugee crisis and Greece is among them.”

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