Greek gov. plans to open hotspots across the country to deal with pressure on islands

18 August 2016
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Te Greek government is planning to build small and larger sized refugee camps across the country in an effort to alleviate the pressures on Aegean islands hosting rising numbers of refugees and illegal migrants. A government sources told news agency Reuters that the goal is to release the pressure Greek islands are facing by the swelling numbers of refugees arriving every day. The plan is to set up reception centres with a capacity of up to 1,000 people, where some of the 10,700 estimated refugees and migrants currently on islands could be relocated to. The same source told Reuters that the slow pace at which asylum applications are being processed is causing increased tensions and disgruntlement among refugees at the island hotspots. ‘We are facing numerous problems on the islands. People feel trapped and confusions is rising. They are one step away from making their dream of entering Europe come true but failed. We are moving in a direction of decongestion by concurrently expediting the asylum application procedures’, the source said. According to organisation ‘Save the Children’, an additional problem is the presence of 3,800 children on the islands. The organisation has called on the EU to raise its financial assistance to improve living conditions in hotspots in Greece. A spokesperson from NGO ‘Arsis’ spoke to Reuters confirmed the negative living conditions on the islands stating that the current number of 728 children’s beds in centres throughout Greece was insufficient.

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