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Tsipras and Davutoglu to watch a match before talks on refugees

10 November 2015 / 16:11:16  GRReporter
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The main topic of Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras’s official visit to Turkey on 17-18 November may be the refugee crisis, but in fact, it will begin at the stadium. According to the Greek newspaper Ta Nea, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmed Davutoglu has invited his Greek counterpart to watch with him the friendly match between the national football teams of both countries next Tuesday. The working meeting that will discuss the influx of numerous refugees and migrants will be held afterwards.

It is expected that Alexis Tsipras will meet with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan but the exact time of the meeting has not yet been specified.

At the same time, traffickers in refugees transported hundreds of them in luxury yachts. Yesterday an old but large three-storied yacht with 200 people on board arrived at the north-eastern coast of the island of Lesbos. They told volunteer rescuers that they had paid 2,500 euro per person for the transportation from the Turkish coast to Lesbos. The journey took place under difficult conditions, as the hundreds of travellers were literally stuffed inside the yacht. It arrived near the island, not endangering the life of any refugee or migrant that travelled by it.

Spanish and Greek volunteer rescuers helped the people to descend without the intervention of the Greek coast guard. There were many women and children among them. As no information indicates the presence of any of the traffickers among the travellers, assumingly they had assigned a migrant to steer the yacht.


Photo: protothema.gr

Ordinary disposable boats continue to arrive at Lesbos, especially as weather conditions are suitable. An inflatable boat with 50 people on board arrived at the beach in the island's capital, Mytilene, near the Freedom Monument. According to estimates, around 5,000 people have arrived at Lesbos over the past three days.

The situation is severe in the region of the village of Idomeni near the Greek-Macedonian border. More than 7,000 refugees and migrants left for Macedonia within one day alone and there were 4,500 other people in the region yesterday.

Buses full of people keep on arriving at Idomeni where the situation is worse in the evening, as border crossing takes place at a slower pace and refugees and migrants have to wait five hours to cross the border. Women and children usually wait in the big tents of UN High Commissioner for Refugees and humanitarian organizations where they obtain thicker clothes and essentials. Men prefer to stay in the bus until it is their turn to cross the border.

Although the vast majority of refugees and migrants aim at leaving for Western Europe, a new camp has formed in the Greek capital. The newspaper Kathimerini reports that people of uncertain identity pitched 40 tents in Victoria Square last night and there were about 1,000 migrants in the square and around it in the morning.


Photo: kathimerini.gr

Early inh the morning, members of far left groups for "solidarity with refugees and migrants" handed out food to them, the result being heaps of waste in many parts of the square already.

Meanwhile, the traffic on Aristotle street was interrupted because the people had moved from the square to the roadway. According to residents of the region, drug selling is taking place in the square. In their words, when they called the police to report it, they were replied that there was a staff shortage.

Tags: PolicyAlexis Tsipras on an official visit to TurkeyFootball matchNational teams of Greece and TurkeyRefugee floodLesvosMmigrantsVictoria Square
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