Greek mayors react to the setting of migrant camps in their municipalities

The mayors of Elliniko-Argyroupoli, Palaio Faliro, Alimos and Glyfada have reacted strongly to the setting of migrant camps in their municipalities.

Respective mayors Yiannis Konstantatos, Dionysis Chadzidakis, Andreas Kondylis and Giorgos Papanikolaou sent a letter to Deputy Migration Minister Yiannis Mouzalas complaining about the makeshift migrant camps at former Elliniko airport, the taekwondo Olympic arena and the hockey Olympic stadium at Elliniko.

More than 1,000 economic migrants who are denied refugee status and their entry to Europe through the border of Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia was blocked, have been transferred to the wider Athens area.

The Greek government has created makeshift temporary hospitality camps with the help of NGO’s. The deputy minister stated that the migrants will remain there until December 17. However, he admitted that he doesn’t know where the migrants will be transferred after that.

The mayors complain that the temporary camps are not temporary at all and the government has no plan as to what to do with the migrants. In the letter they ask the deputy for guarantees that the migrants will not pose a threat to their municipalities. They claim that the unregistered migrants are a safety and health hazard.

In a number of questions they address to Mouzalas they ask if the makeshift camps are hospitality centers, reception facilities or transit centers, how these migrants would be registered, how long will they stay, who would cover the cost of their feeding and what guarantees do they have that there are no terrorist elements among them since they are not registered.

Meanwhile, fights between migrants broke out at the taekwondo arena on Thursday night with three people taken to the hospital with minor injuries. Greek police arrived at the spot but they didn’t have to intervene since the fights stopped upon their arrival.