The situation on the Greek islands remains dire: there was another fire in a shelter – this time on Samos. Rescue workers were able to quickly get the fire under control.
Less than two weeks after the Moria refugee camp was destroyed by several fires, a fire broke out at a refugee reception center on the Greek island of Samos. The flames have already been brought under control, police and fire brigade announced on Sunday. Accordingly, two or three living containers were destroyed, there were no injuries.
Reports say there was a fire in part of the camp where unaccompanied minors live. One resident was taken to hospital as a precaution, he said. About 60 unaccompanied minors were also taken to a hotel where they will stay for the next few days. The Greek branch of the aid organization Doctors Without Borders tweeted that the doctors treated people who had inhaled smoke. The Mayor of Eastern Samos, Giorgos Stantzos, announced that three containers had been burned down.
Break! A fire broke out #Vathy Samos tonight where thousands of people live in makeshift tents with no protection or safety. The fire is under control after the destruction of two containers. Médecins Sans Frontières teams treat people for smoke inhalation on site and provide mental health support pic.twitter.com/OySzcfG3GY
– MSF Zee (@MSF_Sea) September 20, 2020
Last Tuesday, there had already been a fire in the vicinity of the camp, after which several men were taken into custody on suspicion of arson. Since the big fire in the Moria refugee camp on Lesvos a week and a half ago, the situation on Samos has also been tense. It is feared that migrants could start fires there, as they would have done in Moria, in order to leave the camp.
More than 12,000 people are homeless on Lesvos
Eleven days ago, the Moria refugee camp was destroyed by several fires. According to authorities, this has left 12,700 people homeless. By the weekend, about 9,000 of them were housed in a makeshift tent town on Lesvos.
Like the Moria camp, the facility on Samos was built during the 2015 refugee crisis. This camp is also completely overcrowded – almost 6,000 migrants live there instead of the planned 650. As a result, hygienic conditions are poor and there are always violent conflicts and fires in the camp on Samos.
Tensions are further fueled by the fact that unlike the rest of the country, the refugee camps in Greece are still subject to curfews due to the corona pandemic. According to official charges, 21 infections with the new corona virus have so far been detected in the refugees on Samos.