Fire in Mavrovouni Camp
September 27, there was information on social media about a fire in Mavrovouni Camp on Lesvos. A blaze set several containers on fire, luckily no one got injured. However, some people lost their belongings and paper which is a hard set back, as it is very complicated for asylum seekers and refugees to get official papers replaced once they get lost.
Closing of ESTIA foreseen
The ESTIA (Emergency Support to Integration and Accommodation programme) is in large parts responsible for the accommodation of refugees outside of camps in Greece. It oversaw and carried out cash transfers to eligible people. It is funded by the EU and run by Greek authorities. In 2020, the programme was overtaken by the UNHCR. We reported that the handing-over led to many problems, even so far that eligible families were left without cash and shelter for days, and rents were not paid via the ESTIA, leading to more resentments of flat-owners towards refugees and asylum seekers. The whole programme is set to be ending by the end of the year. With just two month until it’s end, no alternative programme is in sight.
It has been one year since the closed controlled centres on the Aegean Islands have been opened. The people who live there are de facto in detention. Free movement is restricted and entering is only possible with controlling your fingerprints. NGOs still advocate for a more humane and dignified approach. Media attention as well as the public outcry has however become quieter around these prison camps. Sad proof that the Greeks authorities’ plan to divert public attention away from the people who live there. Here more on this topic.
Numbers in September
104 boats with approximately 2006 people were stopped and illegally pushed back by the Turkish Coast Guard and the Greek Police during the 5. -25th of September 2022.
Approximately half of this number arrived on the Aegean Islands during the same period: 48 boats with 1282 people.
This leaves 3984 registered refugees on the Aegean islands by September 25th.