Relatively calm so far this summer, the overcrowded and troubled refugee and detention center on the island of Lesbos erupted again on June 29 when police arrested 13 asylum seekers from ages 14-32 on charges of causing grievous bodily harm during a wild fracas.
The suspects, who were mostly Afghans, were involved in a series of violent physical altercations over religious differences on June 28, in which sharpened wooden and metal objects were used as weapons, said Kathimerini.
Seven people were reportedly injured. Moria has the capacity to host 3,500 people but is currently sheltering more than 5,500 and new arrivals are coming all the time from nearby Turkey, which allows human traffickers to operate during a suspended swap deal with the European Union since 2016.
Authorities said that there has been a significant spike in arrivals over the last month and that the number of asylum seekers at the camp in May was about 4,500 people, the only option left them to prevent being returned to Turkey where they first went after fleeing war and strife in the Middle East, particularly Syria’s civil war.
Some 70,000 are stuck in Greece, including more than 15,000 on Greek islands after the EU closed its borders to them and reneged on promises to help take some of the overload from Greece during its more than nine-year-long economic crisis.
A total of number 1,048 asylum seekers arrived on Lesbos in June in 2018, significantly less that the 1,523 that landed on the island from June 1-29 this year, the paper said.