Tuesday October 21, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
24o C
16o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Illegal migrants eye charter flights

Faced with tighter police controls at Greece’s western ports of Patras and Igoumenitsa, human traffickers are increasingly using smaller airports across the country to smuggle illegal migrants into Western Europe, Kathimerini understands.

Hundreds of unregistered migrants have been collared at airports on Santorini, Myconos, Samos and Mytilene in recent months while trying to travel to major cities in Western Europe using fake documents, according to police.

Suspects usually prefer direct charter flights that do not involve stopovers at the bigger, more secure airports across the European Union.

Some 331 clandestine migrants were arrested between May 1 and July 23, according to police.

“They enter the country illegally through Evros and then, via Piraeus, they travel to regional airports aiming to get aboard a summer charter flight to Western Europe,” a police official who asked not to be identified told Kathimerini.

He said that most would-be passengers buy fake travel documents in Athens’s central Omonia district. The price of being transported to an airport can reach up to 3,000 euros, the officer said, adding that suspects are equipped with airport maps that help them keep clear of security checks.

Human smugglers also use the main airports at Athens and Thessaloniki. In the first half of 2012, some 589 people tried to board flights to one of the passport-free Schengen zone countries, according to police. A total of 436 were arrested at Athens International Airport and 153 in Thessaloniki. Most of those came from Afganistan, Iraq and Syria.

Police also apprehended 86 human traffickers over the same period.

Meanwhile, late on Friday, officials of the hard-left SYRIZA party slammed the ongoing police operation aimed at rounding up illegal immigrants in Athens dubbed Xenios Zeus.

“Incriminating poverty, launching war against poor foreigners, and racism are no guarantee for the security of the increasingly poor Greeks,” 12 SYRIZA MPs said in a statement.

ekathimerini.com , Saturday August 11, 2012 (15:41)  
Wage dispute hurts gov’t unity before troika return
Most Britons want to see Parthenon Marbles back in Athens, poll shows
Turkey tests Cyprus after research vessel encroaches on offshore gas area
Doctors’ disiplinary panel needs surgery
ANALYSIS
At loggerheads over role of the IMF
The Greek coalition government’s plan for a clean exit from the European Union / International Monetary Fund program was dealt a deadly blow by the markets last week on the back of rising po...
Hong Kong telecom group buys out Greek start-up
Hong Kong-based telecommunications multinational PCCW Global has announced it has bought out Greek start-up Crypteia Networks, aiming to incorporate its products into the group’s portfolio. ...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
PAOK fans stop coach Markopoulos´s move to Olympiakos
Olympiakos is once again in the lookout for a new coach after the refusal of PAOK to release Soulis Markopoulos, while Panathinaikos defeated Kolossos on Rhodes on Monday to become the only ...
BASKETBALL
Reds lose to Nea Kifissia, search for new coach
Nea Kifissia recorded the biggest win of its short history in the top flight defeating Olympiakos 68-67 on Sunday, in a Basket League weekend marred by the abandonment of the Thessaloniki de...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
Stop moaning and get in the game
There are so many people who love spending their days talking about the crisis and proclaiming that they know exactly what needs to be done to solve the country’s problems. Some of them obvi...
EDITORIAL
Exorcising the ghosts
Developments last week held in store an uncomfortably realistic understanding of the risks engulfing the country. The massive sell-off in Greece’s stock and bond markets was a strong shock. ...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. PAOK fans stop coach Markopoulos´s move to Olympiakos
2. At loggerheads over role of the IMF
3. Hong Kong telecom group buys out Greek start-up
4. Local tourism could see more arrivals, investments next year
5. Troika exerts pressure using return date
6. Wage dispute hurts gov’t unity before troika return
more news
Today
This Week
1. Greece must stick to reforms, says Schaeuble
2. Bakers encircle Thessaloniki's White Tower with giant 'koulouri'
3. Turkish vessel enters Cypriot Exclusive Economic Zone
4. European leaders pivot back to debt crisis after wake-up call
5. Hardouvelis does not see 'big surprises' in ECB stress tests
6. Stop moaning and get in the game
Today
This Week
1. Possible third figure in Amphipolis mosaic may be uncovered shortly
2. Greece to contribute 1 mln towards Gaza reconstruction
3. Greece nearing bailout exit, says gov't spokesperson after IMF talks
4. Istanbul skyscraper casts shadow over Greece's banking ambitions
5. Coalition shooting itself in the foot
6. GPO poll gives SYRIZA clear lead over New Democracy
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.