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Mitsotakis intervenes, Tsipras unable to prevent Greece’s exit from Schengen

29 January 2016 / 20:01:29  GRReporter
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Until yesterday, the Greek Deputy Minister for Migration Yiannis Mouzalas claimed that there was no danger for Greece to be excluded from the Schengen area. Today, however, he said that "such a possibility is apparent." In statements during the morning broadcast of Mega TV he also said, "Such things are heard behind the table of discussion. Do you think that this does not bother us to some extent? Europe is on the verge of falling apart, going far beyond the paraiyars. I am concerned over the threats of Europeans."

Mouzalas ensured that the Greek government will fight with "similar proposals which are not official, in order to remove them from the negotiating table." He urged all Greek parties except Golden Dawn to take joint actions, announcing in this regard that he will meet with the leaders of New Democracy, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, who himself has asked to be informed, of PASOK, Fofi Genimata, and of Potami Stavros Theodorakis.

According to the Minister, the reception and registration centre on Lesbos is ready, and those in Chios and Leros are in the final stage of construction. "The delay in Samos is due to the problems with the terrain and we have encountered difficulties in Kos (protests from the local community - editor’s note)". Mouzalas still failed to answer exactly when the centres will be ready.

The government passivity to the probability of Greece leaving the Schengen area due to its failure to contain the refugee crisis has driven the main opposition party New Democracy to take action. As stated by the party spokesman, its leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis is launching a series of initiatives.

On Monday he will meet with Yiannis Mouzalasso to be informed in detail about the situation. On Tuesday he will visit the island of Lesbos to monitor the situation closely and to be informed on the progress of the construction of the centres.

On 15 February, the leader of New Democracy will invite to a meeting the 28 ambassadors of the European Union member states in Athens to present to them the scale of the problem and his position on it. Two days later Kyriakos Mitsotakis will meet and discuss the matter with European officials such as Jean-Claude Juncker and Pierre Moscovici, and with the representatives of the European People's Party at its meeting in Brussels.

In his statements to the media, New Democracy spokesman Giorgos Koumoutsakos criticized the government's actions regarding the refugee crisis, stating that it does not affect only Greece, which is why the country expects continuous support and solidarity from its partners. "No one should shake a finger at crisis-hit Greece that has taken on the burden of the refugee crisis. The country needs to implement the commitments. The government has proved that it is subordinated to its obsessions and ineptitude," Koumoutsakos said, recalling the statements of SYRIZA ministers that borders should be open for all and the words of former minister Tassia Christodulopoulou that migrants sunbathe in Athens and disappear afterwards. He also stressed that the first decision of the government of SYRIZA was to close the detention centre for migrants in Amigdaleza and that Minister of Defence Panos Kammenos threatened that Europe would fill up with jihadists through Greece.

Koumoutsakos did not fail to note that Turkey is not fulfilling its obligations either. "It does not respect the signed bilateral agreements regarding Greece and the EU. It has done nothing to solve the problem of human traffickers on its coast. Whatever happens at sea is not enough to solve the problem if it is not addressed where it begins, namely on the Turkish coast."

Tags: PoliticsRefugee crisisConstruction of reception and registration centersGreek islandsSchengen areaKyriakos Mitsotakis
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