World Bulletin / News Desk
The EU's migration chief on Friday huddled with the mayors of five Greek islands where anger is mounting over the continued presence of more than 15,000 refugees and migrants.
Dimitris Avramopoulos, who is Greek, sought to reassure the mayors of Lesbos, Samos, Chios, Kos and Leros, who have repeatedly accused the Athens government of ignoring calls to alleviate pressure on their congested migrant camps.
"We agreed that last week's images must not be seen again," Avramopoulos told reporters after the meeting, referring to footage of migrant tents buried in snow.
A group of Lesbos islanders last year were nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize for helping thousands of refugees and migrants landing ashore in 2015 after risking their lives to cross the Aegean Sea.
But the island's mayor Spyros Galinos says the authorities must permit the relocation of the most vulnerable refugees to the mainland, and remove a minority linked to petty crime.
"Things are not going well. We are bearing a burden that local society can no longer manage," Galinos told reporters.
There are over 60,000 mainly Syrian refugees and migrants from other nations trapped in Greece since early 2016, when neighbouring countries further north shut their borders to prevent a massive flow to wealthy European countries.
While a deal subsequently signed between the European Union and Turkey has drastically cut new arrivals, nearly 700 people have arrived in Greece in the last two weeks, the International Organisation for Migration said on Tuesday.
Most of them have joined an overcrowded, increasingly desperate population on the islands, packed in camps that have now exceeded their original capacity.
Avramopoulos said the EU had already set aside funds for additional refugee accommodation and that they should be utilised.
The immigration ministry has refused to permit large-scale relocation from the islands to the Greek mainland, fearing that such a move could jeopardise the EU-Turkey agreement.
There are frequent brawls in the island camps, with the residents tired of the long wait for asylum papers and fearful of being returned to Turkey.
Wednesday's airstrikes target terrorist camps in Zap region, Turkish military says
One soldier killed, several injured by ADF attack on convoy of senior army officer in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo
Attorney General Jeff Sessions refused to discuss any private conversations he had with President Trump
In statement issued from New York, Roselyn Akombe says next Thursday's repeat elections cannot be credible
Forestry and Water Minister Veysel Eroglu says Turkey ‘is among top three in terms of water projects’
The steps include improving security barriers in crowded places, guidance on design to protect public spaces, and advice on how to protect sports and cultural events.
Priced 40 percent below official market rates, the fuel was then mixed and distributed at service stations and on the black market, with police registering 30 trips from Libya to Sicily.
The summit will gather heads of state or government from Angola, Burundi, CAR, Republic of Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Rwanda, Sudan, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.
Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire told a parliamentary committee in London of the new date.
Hamid brandishes his pincers at the heart of the joyous racket of the Sunday market of Beni Yakhlef, a rural town about 30 kilometres (20 miles) from the seaside metropolis of Casablanca.
At least 41 people died in wave of weekend fires, the second such tragedy in months
Executive order 'plainly discriminates based on nationality', Hawaii judge Derrick Watson rules
One of the fishermen was shot and has been admitted to hospital
The final vote on the legislation is to be made in the upper house Senate after the lower house National Assembly overwhelmingly approved it last week.
On Monday, Iraqi government forces captured oil-rich Kirkuk from Peshmerga forces
Anti-terror airstrike conducted in northern Iraq's Zap region, military says