Migrant arrivals pick up, camps burst at the seams


Migrant arrivals on Greece’s northeastern Aegean islands have picked up as hundreds of asylum seekers are attempting to cross the sea from Turkey and reach the European Union on a daily basis.

Officials said 1,607 migrants and asylum seekers landed on the islands in the week between August 5 and 11, bringing the total number of people staying at island facilities to 21,550.

All migrant reception and identification centers are stretched far beyond their hosting capacity. The Moria hotspot, on the island of Lesvos, is currently holding more than 9,000, nearly three times its capacity.

The Chios camp has a capacity of around 1,000 people, but it is currently home to 2,440. Meanwhile, the center on Samos, built for 600 people, now houses 4,005. The hotspots on Kos and Leros are also overcrowded.

Meanwhile, according to data provided by Turkish authorities for the period August 5-11, the country’s coast guard recorded a total 132 boats carrying an estimated 4,098 people trying to make the Aegean crossing to Greece.

Turkish authorities said they managed to stop 86 vessels.