Greece says will respect landmark court decision on migrants

Greece says will respect landmark court decision on migrants

Greek officials say the government will respect a landmark court decision against a European Union policy that allowed them to keep refugees and migrants on the Greek islands where they first arrived even after they had applied for asylum.

A high court on Tuesday ruled that migrants reaching the Greek islands who apply for asylum will be allowed to travel to the mainland while their applications are being processed.

Yiannis Balafas, a deputy migration minister, said Wednesday that the decision is not retroactive but would “create some difficulties” and “create a new situation” for migrants who arrive after the ruling.

Under a 2016 agreement between Turkey and the European Union, migrants who travelled to Greek islands off the Turkish coast were restricted in where they could go after that. [AP]

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