x

Politics

Greece Renews Plea for EU Help Keeping Out Refugees, Migrants

Extending a 16-foot high wall on the border with Turkey to eventually cover 180 kilometers (112 miles) and adding extra patrols and electronic technology to spot refugees and migrants isn’t enough to keep them out of Greece, Citizens Protection Minister Takis Theodorikakos said.

Talking to European Union ambassadors, he asked for more financial and logistical assistance after the New Democracy government said its push to keep out asylum seekers was guarding the periphery of the bloc.

Greece prevented around 260,000 migrants from entering illegally in 2022 and arrested 1,500 traffickers, an official said, Turkey allowing human traffickers to keep sending them during an essentially-suspended 2016 swap deal with the EU.

Turkey is holding some 4.4 million of them who went there fleeing war, strife and economic hardship in their homelands, most from Syria and Afghanistan, and hasn’t been sanctioned while Greece is being accused of pushbacks, which it denied.

“The task (of protecting the border) needs the support … of European public opinion, the European Union itself and its constituent members individually,” Theodorikakos said. “It is our steadfast position that member states of first reception cannot be (the migrants’) only European destinations,” reported EuroNews about the reach-out.

“There must be solidarity among member-states and a fair sharing of duties…close coordination is a must,” he also said, Greece long complaining it has taken on most of the burden after the EU closed its borders to asylum seekers.

“Our priority is to protect the human life and dignity endangered by the criminal trafficking networks … even though we are no longer an EU member, we are closely cooperating,” said British Ambassador Matthew Lodge.

“There must be solidarity among member-states and a fair sharing of duties…close coordination is a must,” said Theodorikakos.
He got backing from Cypriot Ambassador Kyriakos Kenevezos, who spoke of the “need for understanding” from countries that don’t have external EU borders, the bloc’s Dublin Regulation allowing refugees and migrants to seek asylum only in the first country in which they land, most often Greece.

The EU’s border protection agency, Frontex, will add another 400 border guards in Greece — 250 of them in February — to the existing 1,800-member force, Theodorikakos also said.

(Material from the Associated Press was used in this report)

RELATED

ATHENS - A memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the electric grid networks of Greece and Egypt, known as the Greece-Africa Power Interconnector (GAP), was signed in Athens by Houston-based McDermott International and Athens-based Eunice Energy Group.

Top Stories

Columnists

A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

FALMOUTH, MA – The police in Falmouth have identified the victim in an accident involving a car plunging into the ocean on February 20, NBC10 Boston reported.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

Video

Police: 10 Wounded in Drive-by Shooting in Central Florida

LAKELAND, Fla. (AP) — Ten people were injured during a drive-by shooting in a central Florida neighborhood, police said.

THESSALONIKI – Video Art Miden collaborates with ToPikap in Thessaloniki, presenting the video art program ‘Frozen’, curated by Gioula and Olga Papadopoulou, on Saturday, February 4.

SAN FRANCISCO – The opening of Uproot, the Greek Chamber Music Project (GCMP) concert tour marking the centennial of the Asia Minor Catastrophe, takes place on Friday, February 3, 8 PM, at Old First Concert, 1751 Sacramento Street in San Francisco, and live-streamed online.

MILAN — Italy's government has increased security around its diplomatic missions around the globe in response to “a crescendo of terroristic attacks” by an anarchist network that has been acting in solidarity with an imprisoned Italian militant, the foreign minister said Tuesday.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. [email protected]

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.