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Greece brings evicted refugees back to accommodation centers

Some 150 recognized refugees were transferred from Victoria Square in downtown Athens to reception facilities in Skaramangas and Schisto in western Attica.

Men, women and children had camped at the square after they were forced out of camps on the islands following due to the recent policy of Migration Ministry to halt providing refugees with recognized status with accommodation and food.

The policy implemented since June 1, has created impasses as the refugees are forced to leave accommodation structures and seek for a home on their own, without the state to have created the appropriate conditions and integration mechanisms.

According to the Migration Ministry, 2,144 refugees left the island of Lesvos June 5-29, and another 218 in the first days of July. The population of Moria hot spot is at 15,515.

Migration Minister Notis Mitarakis posted on social media after the transfer operation from the square:

“All refugees have left Victoria square for temporary accommodation, thanks to the actions of the migration ministry’s first reception service and Greek police.”

He referred to solidarity activists saying that they “have come to the square to exploit human suffering in order to create certain impressions.”

According to police, the operation of transferring the refugees’ to camps was without incidents and police had to persuade them.

However, on Saturday night, tension went high when police tried to remove the refugees from the square.

Police blamed the activists for the incidents, detained 20 of them, and later placed four under arrest.


The first refugees and migrants boat in July arrived at the island of Lesvos on Sunday. A total of 27 people, among them 11 children, 9 men and 7 women. They were all taken to a quarantine facility at Kara Tepe.

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