Idomeni, Greece, 8 Dhulqa’dah 1436/23 August 2015 (MINA) – Hundreds of refugees in Greece have forced their way over the Macedonian border as police fired stun grenades in a failed bid to stop them breaking through.
For the second day in a row, police fired stun grenades and clashed with refugees trying to rush over the border between Greece and Macedonia, Al Jazeera quoted by Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA) as reporting.
Al Jazeera’s Jonah Hull, reporting from Idomeni, on the Greek side of the border, said he heard seven loud blasts from his position 150m away.
The AFP news agency said the refugees scrambled over barbed wire fences on Saturday as the border guards tried to stop them.
Thousands of rain-soaked refugees have been trapped in a no man’s land since Thursday.
Overnight on Friday, police had let small groups of families with children cross the border by walking to a railway station in the Macedonian town of Gevgelija, where most take trains to the border with Serbia, before heading towards EU-member Hungary.
Those who could not cross, including many women and children, spent the rainy and chilly night in the open, the AP news agency reported.
Hull said large numbers of Syrians had earlier moved back from the point of crossing to separate themselves from other nationalities.
“They want to separate themselves from the other nationalities; the Pakistanis, the Afghans, the Iraqis…what they say is that all these other nationalities claim to be Syrians as well, because it is the Syrians who have the most valid claim to asylum.
“They are refugees, they are fleeing civil war. Many of the others, they say, are economic migrants.” (T/P001/R04)
Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)