The leftist-led government lost a lot of valuable time before it grasped the magnitude of the refugee and migrant crisis.
Over the past few weeks, under the threat of being ousted from the Schengen area and moves by some governments to shift Europe’s borders to the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Athens has taken steps so that it provides no more fodder to those who want to isolate the country.
On the domestic front, moreover, ruling SYRIZA is also having to face the pressures it helped create when it was in the opposition. Its backing of social unrest by certain groups – such as at Keratea against plans for a landfill, in Skouries against the gold mine there and a movement that refused to pay toll charges, among others – is now coming at the price of protests against the construction of refugee screening centers.
But the real cost of the government’s mistakes will ultimately be paid by the people and the country.