Greece was on Thursday criticized for its treatment of migrants and refugees, as Amnesty International launched its annual assessment of the world’s human rights.
The London-based rights group warned that strengthened border controls across the European Union have put at risk the lives of immigrants and asylum-seekers – most importantly Syrians fleeing their war-torn nation.
Many Syrians fleeing the conflict were being held in “very poor conditions” in Greece, the organization said while describing conditions at one Athens detention center as “inhuman and degrading.”
Speaking at a London press conference Thursday, Amnesty’s Secretary General Salil Shetty noted “a ratcheting up of the anti-immigration scapegoating refugees and asylum-seekers” across austerity-hit Europe.
“People feel a growing lack of respect for rights for people seeking refuge in the European Union,” Shetty said.