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Police operation to move thousands of refugees to new Kara Tepe camp

Police operation to move thousands of homeless refugees on the island of Lesvos to the new provisional tents camp in the military firing range of Kara Tepe is unfolding smoothly, local media report on Thursday.

The operation started at 8 o’ clock in the morning with police officers urging refugees and asylum-seekers to pack their things and go to the camp. High priority was given to the people camping on the road leading from Moria to the island’s capital Mytilene.

A large number of refugees and migrants from parts where police did not operate left on their own, passed through police blocks and moved to the new cap as well.

By noon, a total of 450 people had already moved to the new structure. 250 of them underwent medical checks and rapid Covid-19 tests.

200 female police officers were deployed to the island to persuade families to move to Kara Tepe.

The temporary tent camp in Kara Tepe can reportedly house up to 5,000 people. The tents were set up over the weekend, so far, 1,200 people have moved into the new facility.

More than 12,000 people, mostly refugees from Afghanistan, Africa and Syria, were left without shelter, proper sanitation or access to food and water after fires destroyed the hotspot of Moria last week.

The temporary tent camp in Kara Tepe can reportedly house up to 5,000 people.

The tents were set up over the weekend, so far, only 1200 people have moved into the new facility.

There are reportedly groups among the refugees telling their compatriots to not move into the camp because they will not be able to leave neither for the mainland nor for Europe.

The current question is how things will develop when police reaches the hardliners, notes local media stonisi.

The area where the camp has been set up right next to the seaside has raised many questions, including  also the one: How safe is for the refugees to spend the winter exposed to the ice cold north winds of the Aegean, in tents installed on unstable soil.

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