The United Nations refugee agency on Tuesday pressed Greek authorities to take urgent action to improve conditions at migrant reception facilities on the Aegean islands, particularly on Lesvos and Samos.
Describing living conditions at the camps as “abhorrent,” UNHCR spokesperson Charlie Yaxley expressed fears that they would only worsen.
“With winter approaching and more people arriving, time is of the essence and emergency measures are needed,” he said. The UNHCR welcomed plans to create space for another 6,000 people in mainland camps but said the 11,000 arrivals in the last three months have “outpaced” departures.
In a related development, the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights Dunja Mijatovic said Greece must urgently adopt long-term measures to improve the reception and integration of migrants.