CHIOS, Greece – The last tent at the refugee and migrant camp of Souda, on the NE Aegean island of Chios, was dismantled on Monday, after the last 50 migrants in it were transferred over the weekend.
The tents was set up near the Chios town center, in the area that used to be the Byzantine castle’s moat. The area is next to the landing where fishermen auction the catch of the day.
The camp became notorious for the lack of basic amenities; by the end of 2015 it was housing as many as 2,000 individuals under dire conditions.
Despite the outcry, it took a long time to complete its closure, Chios mayor Manolis Vournous said: “The support of the police, the port authorities, the High Commissioner (of Refugees at the UN), volunteering compatriots, the European Commission and certain services of the Migration Policy ministry were instrumental (for its closure). The patience of the area’s residents was endless.”
However, Vournous warned, “The problem of inadequate management of the migration issue by the central authority remains, and the repercussions on islands and their residents are dramatic.”