Covid-19 restrictions in place for migrant/refugee 'hotspots'; partial restriction of movement outside camps

Wednesday, 18 March 2020 21:15
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The Greek government on Wednesday announced urgent Covid-19-related measures for another, and now lesser crisis facing the country, namely, the resurgent migrant crisis that has swamped a handful of eastern Aegean islands and was even "weaponized" earlier this month by the Turkish state on Greece's land borders.

Among others, the free circulation of third country nationals hosted in "hotspots" in on the islands will be restricted, while works to create  closed camps will be accelerated on Samos, Kos and Leros, in cooperation with local authorities and the migration and asylum ministry.

Additionally, third country nationals that illegally arrived in the country - practically all from neighboring Turkey - after March 1, 2020 as would-be asylum seekers and irregular migrants will remain outside official "hotspots" and camps, in an effort to reduce possible exposure to the coronavirus.

The restriction on movement, to be enforced by police, will last for 30 days. Small groups of people, one per family, in the camps will be allowed to travel to nearby towns from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

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