Moria fire: EU mobilises support
The European Council president Charles Michel said he is working on mobilisation of the EU support to Greece in the aftermath of the Moria migrant camp fire. «Full solidarity with the people of Lesbos providing shelter, the migrants and staff. We are in touch with the Greek authorities and ready to mobilize support», Michel wrote on his Twitter microblog. Thousands of migrants are left without shelter. (Image above: social media).
The tensions in the camp were building up after the coronavirus outbreak, imposing lockdown, and strict sanitary rules. Moria saw a spike in coronavirus infections since reporting its first case in the beginning of September, when it was placed in lockdown, with 35 confirmed cases.
Aid groups have long criticised cramped and unsanitary living conditions at Moria, which also made social distancing and basic hygiene measures impossible to implement.
Moria hosts to nearly 13,000 people, four times exceeding its capacity of accomodating migrants. According to InfoMigrants, about 70% of arrived to the camp are from Afghanistan, but also migrants from more than 70 different countries stay there.
Fire broke out in mulitple places in a short space of time, local fire chief Konstantinos Theofilopoulos told state television channel ERT. Protesting migrants hindered firefighters who tried to tackle the flames, he said.
The main blaze was extinguished on September 9 morning, although Mr Theofilopoulos added there were still some small fires burning inside some containers at the site.
“The disaster at Moria is total,” the Secretary General of the Migration Policy Ministry, Manos Logothetis, told the Athens-Macedonian News Agency (ANA).
“In cooperation with all institutions, we must find solutions and provide for the temporary and long-term accommodation of the residents there. This is a first priority for everyone,” he added.