Migrant protest disrupts Greece port News
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Migrant protest disrupts Greece port

Around 400 migrants and refugees staged a protest on Sunday at the Acadia port of Rhodes. Protesters attempted to prevent the departure of the ferry “Nissos Chicos” by standing on its ramp. After hours of police negotiation, the boat left without them.

They demanded to be taken off the island and either transported to the mainland or to proper accommodation as there are no reception facilities on the island, the Greek coastguard told AFP. Negotiations between the protesters and the port police lasted four hours, with port traffic obstructed throughout and an incoming ship (the “Nisos Patmos”) unable to dock. According to Rodiaki, this caused tension between the passengers and the migrants, leading the Central Port Authority of Rhodes’ to intervene and prevent incidents.

The migrants are currently being held in a makeshift tent camp set up last week until they can be transferred to organised accommodation facilities, which according to the Greek Ministry of Migration, happens regularly and efficiently. According to SL Press, the tents were set up following a meeting chaired by Regional Governor Giorgos Hadjimarkos.

Greece has seen an enormous influx of migrants in recent years, particularly from Turkey, and, despite the claim from 2021 Minister of Migration and Asylum Notis Mitarachi that their migration crisis was over, work is still being done to enable Greek facilities to deal with these numbers.