27. November 2015 · Kommentare deaktiviert für Mediterranean Migrants: Latest Developments · Kategorien: Griechenland, Mazedonien, Mittelmeer · Tags:

Quelle: IOM

Greece – IOM staff in Greece report a drastic decrease in the number of migrants and refugees crossing into Greece over the weekend. On Sunday, just 155 migrants arrived on the Greek islands by sea. Of these, 79 arrived in Kalymnos, 44 in Megisti and 24 in Lesvos. The remainder arrived in Chios and Kos.

The drop is significant given that, according to IOM estimates, some 100,000 migrants have crossed into Greece since the beginning of November – averaging around 4,500 crossings per day.

There have also been no migrant fatalities in Greek waters since November 17th, when the Hellenic Coast Guard recovered the remains of nine people – a man, four women and four children. Seven people were rescued and two young boys remain missing, presumed drowned. IOM reports that 585 people have perished on the Eastern Mediterranean migration route since the start of 2015.

November as a whole has seen 14 of 23 days in which no deaths at sea were reported, making this the safest month since August, when there were 13 days with no fatalities recorded. By contrast, September had only nine days without a fatality, and October just ten.

Meanwhile, the Emergency Exit Camp, which is located at Greece’s border with the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), has exceeded its capacity, following a decision by the FYROM to only allow Syrians, Afghanis and Iraqis to cross the border.

The atmosphere at the border is tense and Iranian migrants are reportedly trying to prevent crossings by Syrians, Afghanis and Iraqis. Some have also sewn up their lips to protest the closure.

IOM estimates that the number of migrants not allowed to cross the border rose from 400 on Thursday morning, to 800 by Friday morning and 1,300 on Saturday morning. By Sunday morning there were between 1,500 and 2,000. The main nationalities included Iranians, Bangladeshis, Pakistanis and Moroccans.

Migrants from Morocco told IOM observers they flew to Istanbul in order to cross into Greece.

FYROM officials report that they have recorded the arrival of large numbers of migrants from these four countries since January 2015. The largest group are Iranian. Some 6,231 have been registered since the beginning of the year. The same period saw the arrival of some 5,400 Pakistanis and over 2,000 Palestinians. Large numbers of Nigerians, Congolese, Lebanese and Algerians have also been recorded, according to FYROM authorities (Table 3).

Some 150 migrants stranded at the border have returned to Athens by taxi or bus, according to IOM staff. But others are reportedly still trying to cross the border illegally at other locations. FYROM border police are under orders to stop them.

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