ATHENS — More than 1,000 refugees and other asylum seekers of vulnerable groups entitled to leave the country left on Saturday from the islands of the Eastern Aegean with the chartered ship "Samos."
Specifically, 310 people left from Mytilene, 220 from Chios, 200 from Samos, 110 from Kos and 160 from Leros. The destination of all was the port of Lavrio from where they would be distributed in temporary accommodation structures in mainland Greece.
Migration & Asylum Minister Notis Mitarachi stated:
"We have been dealing with the migration crisis for many years. We have set three goals: Reducing flows, decongesting the islands and thirdly creating a sense of security.
Within a few months the flows have decreased by 96 percent. October closes with the arrival of only 113 migrants from the sea. We have not seen such a number of arrivals for over 15 years! Recognized refugees and other asylum seekers belonging to special categories are constantly leaving the islands. From the VIAL camp in Chios, for example, yesterday and today about 370 people left, half of the residents have left compared to January.
The third big goal is to create a sense of security. To enhance the sense of security of citizens through the operation of closed controlled structures. We are working in this direction and we will achieve this as well."