Residents riled at plan for migrant unit in Rio

Residents of Rio, a small town near Patras in western Greece, are up in arms over an Interior Ministry decision to create a local facility to hold hundreds of illegal immigrants presently camping next to the busy port in the hope of boarding a ferry to Western Europe. Local authorities say they were not consulted about the plan to create the 4-hectare facility, made public by the ministry at the weekend. Municipal officials met late last night to plan protest action against construction of the facility, which would hold 1,000 migrants. Regional governor Spyros Spyridonos said the center would be well organized and not «threaten social cohesion.» Environmental groups have expressed concern about the choice of site due to the previous operation there of a factory producing asbestos, which is carcinogenic.

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