Global Independent Analytics

Greece begins moving migrants from Idomeni camp

Greece has begun evacuating thousands of stranded migrants from the makeshift Idomeni camp on its northern border with Macedonia.

BBC reports: Police started the operation in a morning, they arrived on buses to collect people to better-organised facilities.

Many riot police came to provide security but they said that would not use force. 

There are about 8,400 people at the camp, many of them are children and women. 

They tried to reach northern Europe when Macedonia closed borders with Greece and they stayed there.

The majority of migrants are from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan and they didn`t want to leave the camp despite not the best conditions for living there. 

One Syrian, Rezan, explained his feeling about the situation: "I prepared my bags. If they didn't use force, I will stay for a while, but if they use force, I didn't come here to fight anybody. I will just go. I escaped from Syria because I don't want to fight anybody."

Police didn`t let journalists enter the camp in the morning.

Also, it was reported that police tried to remove 2,000 people who had blocked rail track on the border.

The railway was blocked a month ago, so trains should have to change the route through Bulgaria. 

Mr. Kyritsis said: "Removing all the refugees from the disgrace which is Idomeni is in their own interest. The rail track will open for the train to pass through normally but the fundamental thing is for the people to be transferred to where the conditions are humane."

Macedonia's decided to stop migrants crossing the border from Greece after Austrian decision to tighten its own border controls.

Since then other Balkan countries have closed their own borders.

Millions of refugees without documents have arrived in Europe since last year, thus creating the real crisis to all the EU members.

The European Commission told journalists on Monday it welcomed any initiative by Greece to evacuate migrants and move them to organized reception facilities.

 

By Stefan Paraber for GIA

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