clashes erupt between police and migrants after the fire in the Moria camp

Police in riot gear stormed a rally on Saturday, removing hundreds of protesters by truck. Police in riot gear stormed a rally on Friday, removing hundreds of protesters by truck.

Anger is rising on the island of Lesbos. Greek police used tear gas on Saturday (September 12th) ahead of a violent demonstration by migrants on the streets since the fire in the Mori camp on the island.

While local authorities since Friday have been trying to set up emergency solutions with thousands of tents in a large fenced field, immigrants, for their part, say they are tired of this sordid camp where they have been waiting months, some years, to be transferred.

The fire, which is apparently intentional, has left more than 11,000 people, including thousands of children, homeless since the beginning of the week and sleeping on the streets or on the roads, in particularly difficult conditions.

>> To read and see even about France 24: Migrants: Lesbos camp was destroyed by a huge fire

On Saturday, with tensions rising, hundreds, including many young men, demonstrated not far from the new temporary camp with signs shouting “Freedom!” or “We want to leave Moria”.

Conflicts erupted when protesters threw stones, police responded with tear gas. Several people with breathing difficulties were taken by ambulance.

For several days, “thousands of people have slept on the hills around Moria and on the streets, and the tension between the island’s residents, asylum seekers and the police is increasing,” he said on Saturday. NGO Human Rights Watch.

Thirty-five people are positive for Covid-19

In recent days, many migrants have spread out on the streets, roads or fields and used what they find for protection from the scorching sun, tree branches to hang a tarpaulin, reeds or tall grass for themselves. provide protection, some find refuge under the cemetery trees. And local aid groups have struggled to provide them with food and water.

The Moria camp, the largest in Europe, long criticized by the UN for its overcrowded and deplorable sanitary conditions, burned in five consecutive fires on Tuesday night and Wednesday.

Authorities accuse the migrants of lighting. Just before the first fire, 35 people had tested positive for Covid-19 and were to be placed in isolation.

The preliminary tent camp is expected to open on Saturday afternoon with a capacity of 3,000 people, Greek Migration Minister Notis Mitarachi said, adding that “rapid tests for coronavirus will be conducted at the entrance”.

Angry locals

Ministry spokesman Alexandros Ragavas said the most vulnerable would be the first to be relocated. But the locals do not necessarily view the construction of new camps positively.

The mayor immediately said that the efforts to build temporary camps were “unrealistic” and residents tried to block their construction with dams. “

“The idea of ​​rebuilding this kind of thing must be forgotten,” the mayor of Mytilene, Stratis Kytelis, told Antenna TV on Friday. “Island society can no longer take it […]for health, social cohesion and national security reasons, ”he added.

Limited European support

The pictures of hundreds of families on the street have led several European countries to host a few hundred asylum seekers, especially unaccompanied minors.

But Greece has long complained that its European partners are doing little to help it manage the influx of migrants other than paying for them.

All efforts to establish a quota system, through which each country would welcome some of the migrants, failed, especially in the face of opposition from right-wing governments such as those in Poland or Hungary.

With AFP