More Syrian protesters accept shelter, asylum

Out of a total of 330 Syrian refugees, among them children, sleeping rough on Syntagma Square for nearly three weeks, 50 have accepted an offer of shelter from the City of Athens and will be applying for asylum in Greece rather than continuing their protest in demand of papers allowing them to leave the country for northern Europe.

“I’m calling on the state to make good on its commitment to speed up the asylum process,” Athens Mayor Giorgos Kaminis said Friday after meeting with representatives of the refugees. He also urged his counterparts at other municipalities to find room for the remainder of the protesters.

Meanwhile, an offer by the Church of Greece to house the Syrians in a property in the central Athens neighborhood of Kypseli was deemed “unacceptable” by a local community group in a letter addressed to Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens.