Human Rights Watch issued a statement criticizing what it said were the “deplorable conditions” in which about 4,000 people were being detained on the Greek islands of Lesvos and Chios.
Eva Cosse, HRW's Greece specialist, said: “The EUs policy, carried out in Greece, has locked up families and others who have fled horrors such as ISIS terror, Taliban threats, or Syrian-government barrel bombs.”
The group said Thursday that “blanket detention of all asylum seekers and migrants in closed facilities is unjustified, given the possibility of less restrictive options, and amounts to arbitrary detention. The two closed facilities should be converted into open camps with appropriate services and safety for people needing protection from war, persecution, and human rights abuses.”
The statement also said: “Turkey cannot be considered a safe country due to its refusal to grant effective protection to non-Europeans in need, including Afghans and Iraqis.”