Two charged over tensions at Chios city hall

Two charged over tensions at Chios city hall

A 32-year-old man was led before a prosecutor on the island of Chios on Tuesday, charged with disturbing the peace and violence against officials  during a meeting of the islands’ municipal council on Monday.

Tensions rose in Chios on Monday night when locals who reject the creation of a new migrant centre on the island smashed the town hall’s glass entrance and pushed away municipal staff to reach the hall where the municipal council was holding a meeting to discuss a government proposal for a new, closed-type centre to keep migrants and refugees while they wait for the processing of their asylum applications.

The proposal was presented by Deputy Labour Minister and Chios MP Notis Mitarachi.

Mitarachi was jeered by a group of locals waiting for him outside the town hall, and later by the protesters who forcibly entered the building.

Authorities are also searching for a second man, a 45-year-old man, who is also facing the same charges. 

“We condemn the incident and express our support to Mr. Mitarachi. But these incidents are proof that the people have crossed their limits andI’m afraid that worse could happen,” the regional governor for Northern Aegean Kostas Moutzouris told broadcaster ANT1 on Tuesday, commenting on the incident.

Asked about a protest rally planned rally by islanders on January 22 and 23, Moutzouris said locals “have been very patient until now, waiting from the central government to implement its commitments, but we haven’t seen any results.”

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