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Migration Minister suggests Refugees to stay 2-3 years in Greece, border of FYROM not to open again

Greece’s Minister for Migration Yannis Mouzalas shocked his audience today, representatives of the Greek Municipalities. Mouzalas suggested that the Refugees will stay in Greece for 2-3 years and that the Idomeni-Border to FYROM should be considered as closed.

Mouzalas was speaking at the emergency meeting with the Board of the Central Union of Municipalities of Greece(KEDE), in an effort to have municipalities make facilities available so that the more than 30,000 refugees and migrants currently stranded across the country find a provisional shelter.

“We have to get these people away form the streets,” Mouzalas saidand expressed his reservation that the FYROM border will open again for them.

“In my view the border in Idomeni should be considered as closed,” the Minister stressed without elaborating for how long. FYROM and the other West Balkan countries had claimed to have agreed to allow 580 people per day to cross from Greece. However, hardly 100 people manage to pass through per day, in some days these are even fewer or none.  And they are only Syrians and Iraqis but not Afghans.

Despite the pressure they received from the president of the EU, from Schultz, from Juncker and Merkel, from the Pope, from the UN, from the president of the Red Cross – there was no important personality that made an appeal -, these countries insist,” Mouzalas said stressing “We have no reason to believe otherwise, we have to be prepared for the consequences.”

Urging the municipalities representatives to “no panic” Mouzalas claimed that “ The problem is manageable,” that this is “an extraordinary event that needs time until final settlement.”

Mouzalas reportedly seeks more than 40 facilities in the Athens-Idomeni-Kavala route the refugees cross to reach the borders. These will be in addition to relocation and resettlement camps and he suggested that “refugees and migrants may stay for 2-3 years in Greece,” until the issue is solved.

“Until the European relocation and resettlement system works, these people will stay here for some time.”

Mouzalas announced that the ministry will distribute 20,000 vouchers for food & accommodation torefugees & migrants.

Municipalities will have the possibility to hire a total of 1,700 people to work at these facilities: 5-month jobs. for 400-600 euro.

Meanwhile, Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias said that the country “could handle 150,000 refugees and migrants.”

PS I assume, these vouchers will be available when the EU Funds will come… 🙂

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  1. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    And now the investors will come…

  2. Hmmmmmmmm.