After dumping thousands of people on the Greek shores, while providing little to no resources for the Greeks, a Human Rights Watch group appears to be doing the bidding of the EU. It is putting pressure on the Greeks to allow refugees into its country, rather than calling on multiple European nations to bring relief to the thousands now ‘trapped’ on Islands off the coast of Greece.
|Human Rights Watch wants end to Greek ‘containment’ policy|
On the second anniversary of the EU-Turkey agreement on refugees, Human Rights Watch (HRW) has called on the Greek government to finally put an end to its so called “containment” policy and stop the suffering of thousands of people still stranded at overcrowded migrant camps.
It is two years since the EU-Turkey agreement from March 18, 2016, committed Turkey to accepting the return of all asylum seekers who reached the Greek Islands by traveling through Turkey and crossing the Aegean sea. In return, the EU agreed to provide billions of euros in aid and other benefits, and to resettle an equal number of Syrians who were already in Turkey.But despite the agreement, there are still over 13,000 people stuck at massively overcrowded refugee camps on the north eastern Aegean islands of Chios, Lesvos and Samos, where living conditions have been repeatedly criticized by human rights groups.“Thousands of asylum seekers are trapped in crowded and filthy processing centers on the Greek Islands, with many spending the winter in lightweight tents or even sleeping outside on the ground,” said a statement from HRW. “The Greek government, under a “containment” policy, decided to keep asylum seekers confined to the islands to facilitate their speedy processing and return to Turkey. Women and girls say they experience sexual harassment and threast of violence on a daily basis, deterring them from leaving their shelters or even going to the bathroom alone. They express little confidence that Greek authorities would help or protect them if they report incidents,” the statement added.After a December campaign called #OpenTheIslands was launched by 13 nongovernmental groups, including HRW, to move the asylum seekers to safer conditions on the Greek mainland, more than 7,000 people have been moved. However, thousands more have arrived on the islands or remain trapped there.