UNHCR Partially Suspends Operations On Greek Islands

Melissa Fleming, UNHCR spokeswoman (Photo : MEMO)
Melissa Fleming, UNHCR spokeswoman (Photo : MEMO)

New York, 15 Jumadil Akhir 1437/25 March 2016 (MINA) – The UN High Commissioner for Refugees said it has partially suspended its operations on the Greek islands after the agreement reached between the European Union and Turkey, saying the registration centres have turned into “detention facilities”.

During a press conference held at the UN headquarters in Geneva yesterday, UNHCR spokeswoman Melissa Fleming said that “the so-called ‘hotspots’ on the Greek islands, where refugees and migrants were received, assisted and registered. Under the new provisions, these sites have now become detention facilities.”

“Accordingly, and in line with our policy on opposing mandatory detention, we have suspended some of our activities at all closed centres on the islands,” she added. Middle East Monitor (MEMO) quoted by Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA) as reporting.

According to the Turkey-EU agreement, which will come into force on 20 March, refugees and migrants who enter Greece through Turkey will be returned. For every Syrian refugee returned to Turkey, the EU will receive another who has already registered in Turkey. (T/P002/R07)

Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)