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39 Syrian refugees finally evacuated from Evros river

After several days and following pressure and general outcry, Greek authorities announced that they had found the stranded refugees in Evros river.  In the previous days Greek Police had announced that they could could not locate the refugees, denying at the same time that they were on Greek territory.

“After new information and extensive investigations, a group of irregular immigrants, according to their statement from Syria, consisting of 22 men, 9 women incl one pregnant  and 7 children, was located in the area of ​​Lavara,” a Greke Police statement said on Monday.

It added that “the specific point is approximately 4 kilometers south, from the coordinates outside the Greek territory, which were declared as the initial position days ago. From the moment of their detection, the necessary police forces  and all other state services have rushed to their aid, to treat the immigrants, provide them with food and water and transport them to a place of temporary accommodation.”

Migration and Asylum Minister, Notis Mitarakis, posted on Twitter that the refugees are in good health, while the pregnant woman was taken to a hospital.

It is noted that today the refugees crossed over to the Greek side of the river, after a period of more than a week since they found themselves on the islet of Evros east of the settlement of Kissari – and after waiting in vain to be rescued by the authorities who claim that they failed to rescue them given that the islet did not belong to the Greek territory.

According to newspaper efimerida ton syntakton, it was the second time since July 14 that the group had landed on the islet. The refugees’ odyssey included a violent operation by Greek authorities, a total of 3 deaths plus of a 5-year-old girl that was stung by a scorpion, deportation to Turkey and return to the Evros islet.

The indifference of Greek authorities to appeals to rescue the group have been targeted by the European press, organizations, Amnesty international and social media users, who expressed anger and indignation and raise serious questions about the at least belated and contradictory attitude.

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4 comments

  1. Surely, as they came from Turkey, they are not refugees. Why all the pressure on Greece and not on Turkey?

    • Turkey is not a safe country for refugees, particularly for Syrians. Everyone knows this regardless of the Mafia deals the EU cuts with them because they cannot face their own xenophobia.

    • Frank Farage commenting.

  2. Turkey hosts four million refugees and has been the largest refugee hosting country in the world for the past seven years. At the end of 2020, there are some 3.64 million Syrians under Temporary Protection (TP) and 322,188 International Protection (IP) applicants, mainly from Iraq, Afghanistan, and Iran in the country (UNHCR). Another conversation is whether (I guess the majority of the refugees are Muslims) would be better suited to being placed in a Muslim country (rather than Greece and the EU). Another conversation is why so many innocent people (some may not be) are being displaced. Unfortunately in today’s climate there is little chance of having a coherent debate about the complexities of what is going on in the Middle East.