Local authorities and residents on the eastern Aegean islands of Greece are concerned as migrant flows have started to rise again as summer approaches.
From May 1st, without counting arrivals on Sunday, the northern Aegean islands have reached a total of 831 refugees and Immigrants. Of these, 554 landed on Lesvos, 218 on Chios and 50 on Samos. Despite the promises by Greek PM Alexis Tsipras during his recent visit to Lesvos, that a solution would soon be found, residents remain extremely skeptical, while simultaneously facing other serious issues like the hike in the VAT. The aggregate number of immigrant arrivals on the northern Aegean islands over the last six days has reached 1,200. About 270 immigrants arrived in Mytilene on Sunday, bringing the island’s total number in a day to over 300.
Meanwhile, three Spanish firefighters will stand trial on Monday over charges of illegally transporting immigrants to Greece from abroad. The accused, members of PROEM-AID NGO will stand before the one-Member Appellate Court of Mytilene, along with two Danish citizens es of Arab origin, members of the non-governmental organization “Team Humanity”.
All five are being tried for an attempted illegal transfer of immigrants to Greece on January 14, 2016. According to the indictment, they were captured by Coast Guard officers on a high-speed inflatable boat on the border of Greece and Turkey, trying to tow boats with refugees.
Furthermore, six of the nine protesters arrested during the visit of Greek PM Alexis Tsipras to Lesvos will also stand trial today.
They are accused of disrupting of common peace, aggravated damage, humiliation and attempts of bodily harm.