x

Society

Nine Activist Groups Blast Cyprus Over Migrant Camp Conditions

May 29, 2018

NICOSIA – After fending off criticism that migrants were being pushed into poverty, Cyprus’ government has been assailed anew that they risk becoming homeless because of an inadequate reception center on the island.

That assessment came from nine humanitarian organizations who signed a joint statement, the Italian wire service Agenzia Nazionale Stampa Associata (ANSA)reported.

The organizations – Agapi, Caritas, Cyprus Red Cross Society, Cyprus Refugee Council, Hope for Children, KISA, MiHub, Municipality of Nicosia, and the UNHCR – said migrants on Cyprus face an increased risk of homelessness.

“The number of people seeking asylum in Cyprus has continued to show marked increases over the years, mostly due to the ongoing conflict in Syria: 1,887 in 2014; 2,108 in 2015; 2,871 in 2016 and 4,499 in 2017,” the statement said. “We believe, however, that the national reception system has proven to be inadequate to meet the needs of the increasing numbers of asylum-seekers and is in urgent need of a comprehensive reform,” it said.

Following a recent policy change by the Cypriot Asylum Service, the Kofinou Reception Centre is no longer accepting single male asylum-seekers, it said.

“With the Kofinou Center presently hosting only 265 persons and another 130 unaccompanied asylum-seeking children housed in special shelters, the vast majority of asylum-seekers therefore live outside collective centers,” it said.

The statement further said that the lack of housing and financial assistance “leaves beneficiaries below the poverty line”, which “exacerbates the risk of destitution for asylum seekers”.

The groups said the government, which has essentially ignored complaints, should “take immediate  action to remedy the situation,” including to provide emergency accommodations to all asylum seekers, increasing their benefits and provide measures to aid unaccompanied children.

Earlier, after criticism from activists who said refugees on Cyprus are living in substandard conditions and being pushed into poverty, Defense Minister Savvas Angelides said those who come will find a safe haven and be helped.

RELATED

NICOSIA - A group of 27 refugees from Syria, the Middle East, Asia and Africa are caught in the United Nations’ patrolled buffer zone on the border between the Greek-Cypriot and Turkish-occupied side of the island, unable to move either way.

Top Stories

Columnists

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

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

After Rare Flash Flood Emergency, Florida Prepares for More Heavy Rainfall in Coming Days

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — A tropical disturbance has brought a rare flash flood emergency to much of southern Florida as residents prepared to weather more heavy rainfall on Thursday and Friday.

LAUSANNE, Switzerland  — Despite the complication of recent heavy rain, swimming in the River Seine is still the plan at the Paris Olympics after a $1.

PHOENIX — Phoenix police discriminate against Black, Hispanic and Native American people, unlawfully detain homeless people and use excessive force, including unjustified deadly force, according to a sweeping federal civil rights investigation of law enforcement in the nation's fifth-largest city.

ATHENS - Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis stressed that “tourism development should be sustainable, resilient, fair, and participatory” and that “the dividend of growth should be distributed as fairly as possible throughout the country.

DETROIT — Tesla shareholders voted Thursday to restore CEO Elon Musk's record $44.

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.