Minister fears new crisis on islands if migrant influx continues

Minister fears new crisis on islands if migrant influx continues

Amid fresh threats by Turkey to stop enforcing an agreement with the European Union to curb human smuggling over the Aegean, Greek authorities fear a renewed crisis on the islands.

Migration Minister Yiannis Mouzalas is very worried about the current situation, as the influx of migrants from Turkey has increased since the summer, reaching an average of 100 to 150 a day, a ministry official told Kathmerini.

“If the daily influx continues at this rate, from March onwards we will have to build a new refugee camp every month to host new arrivals,” the official said.

Efforts to ease crowding at island camps and improve living conditions are progressing, according to ministry officials, but more must be done.

In recent comments to Skai TV, Mouzalas underlined three key steps: the transfer of migrants from islands to mainland camps, the acceleration of slow-moving asylum process and the launch of migrant returns to Turkey.

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