MEPs debate situation in Greek migrant camps

Members of Euorpean Parliament expressed concern of to the dire conditions in the refugee camps on the Greek islands, more worrying as the winter approaches, and complained for the lack of solutions. (Image above: illustration).

“In a debate with Commissioner Avramopoulos and the Finnish Presidency, many speakers stressed that this will be the fourth winter with thousands of asylum-seekers living in unacceptable conditions on European soil. MEPs described the situation in places such as the Moria camp as “explosive” and “shameful”, and urged the Greek authorities to speed up transfers to the mainland, giving priority to the most vulnerable people.

The lack of solidarity of EU member states with Greece was also raised during the discussion. Some MEPs blamed the Council of the EU for not being able to reach an agreement for a new common European asylum legislation, which should contribute to alleviate the pressure on Greece.

In a separate debate, MEPs referred to the difficult conditions in which asylum-seekers are living at the Bosnian camp of Bihać, close to the border with Croatia. They underlined that the overcrowded facility lacks minimum services, such as running water, sanitation and electricity, demanded its immediate closure and the transfer of the refugees and migrants to adequate reception centres.

Many of the speakers also denounced illegal pushbacks of asylum-seekers at the Croatian border and called on the European Commission to investigate the numerous allegations of violence by the Croatian police against those attempting to request asylum in their territory.

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