NEWS

Weather delays migrant transfer

weather-delays-migrant-transfer

The scheduled transfer Thursday of 635 asylum seekers belonging to vulnerable groups from the migrant reception center on Samos in the eastern Aegean to a former army base in Ritsona north of Athens was delayed due to bad weather.

The Nissos Chios ferry boat that was scheduled to transfer the asylum seekers from Samos to Piraeus remained docked in Lesvos’ main port of Mytilene. Authorities said the transfer will take place when the weather improves.

Meanwhile, according to figures released by the Northern Aegean’s General Police Directorate Thursday, about 46,000 refugees and migrants arrived on the islands of the northern Aegean in 2019. More specifically, a total of 27,148 migrants and refugees arrived on Lesvos, another 8,076 arrived on Chios and 10,802 on Samos over the course of last year. The number of arrivals on Lesvos was nearly double that of 2018 (14,906).

By Thursday, the number of asylum seekers at the overcrowded Moria hotspot and in the surrounding area had reached 18,747, of whom 1,150 were unaccompanied minors. The total number of minors in Moria had reached 6,500.

Figures released by Moria’s administration show that 36 percent of the camp’s total population are men, 29 percent are women and 35 percent are under 18.

The nationalities of the asylum seekers at Moria are as follows: 73 percent Afghans, 12 percent Syrians and 5 percent Somalis. The remaining 10 percent come from various other countries, mostly in Africa.