NEWS

Migrant centers in turmoil amid fears for minors

TAGS: Migration, Politics, EU

Overcrowding at migrant reception centers across the country continued to fuel tensions on Monday as a United Nations official expressed concerns about detained children.

Scuffles broke out in the Moria camp on Lesvos, which has borne the brunt of the migrant crisis, with police using tear gas to quell the uprising.

Meanwhile on Chios, the mayor, Manolis Vournous, indicated that local authorities were overwhelmed by problems at the site of a an old aluminum factory which is serving as a facility for migrants.

Overcrowding and sewage leaks have made life difficult for the migrants there.

The UN’s special rapporteur on the human rights of migrants, Francois Crepeau, called on Greek authorities to stop detaining unaccompanied children, noting that he had met minors who claimed to have been held at Greek police stations for more than two weeks and who were “traumatized and distressed” by the experience.

“Detention should only be ordered when people present a risk, a danger, a threat to the public and it has to be a documented threat, it cannot simply be a hunch,” the official said, calling for a “substantial and effective” guardianship system for unaccompanied minors and an increased capacity to shelter them.

In addition, Crepeau referred to “an unacceptable level of confusion, frustration, violence and fear” at many migrant reception facilities.

There are also concerns about the fate of migrants who secure asylum status in Greece. Dimitris Christopoulos, vice president of the International Federation for Human Rights, said, “Greece has never had a policy for the integration of migrants.”

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