On Saturday 15th December in the early morning hours the coast guard found 18 corpses of migrant men and one survivor in Thermi, Lesvos. Until now 21 corpses have been found, two persons have survived (one is in Mytilini and one in Turkey) and seven are still missing. The survivor found first on the Greek side informed the authorities that they had started with a ship of 30 migrants from Turkey which capsized on Friday. the authorities try to locate the rest of the migrants in the sea now – among them two women and two children.
Only one 16-year-old survivor has been plucked out of the water and was hospitalised in the island capital Mytilene and another 17-year-old on the Turkish side. The young boy found in the sea near Lesvos told investigators most of those on board the boat which also carried women and children were from Afghanistan with only two persons from Turkey. Greek public television Net said two women and two children had been among the passengers. The group set sail from the western coast of Turkey on Thursday but ran into bad weather that sank their boat during the night, about two miles off Lesvos.
UPDATE: Two of the corpses were recognised by relatives living in Greece and Sweden respectively. One of the is a 17-year-old whose cousin came to recognise him from Naxos where he is living and the other is a 42-year-old whose brother came from Sweden to check for his whereabouts. Through the recognition of the 17-year-old it became known that there has been found another survivor on the Turkish side. The young survivor found in Lesvos left hospital on Tuesday 18 and was transferred to the detention cells of the coast guard.
yahoo news (in greek)
left.gr (in greek)
tvxs (in greek)
lesvos news (in greek)
to vima (in greek)
MYTILINI – PIKPA
THREE WEEKS SINCE THE OPENING AND WE STILL WAIT FOR THE AUTHORITIES TO COMPLY WITH THE MINIMUM OF WHAT THEY PROMISED
In the last weeks we have seen again refugees arriving on Mytilini who due to lacking infrastructures of reception on the island are piled up in miserable detention cells or if these were absolutely overcrowded they found provisory shelter in parks, squares and public places until the moment when the inhabitants of the island attempted to find another solution for them.
Three weeks ago new arriving homeless refugees were firstly transferred to the childrens’ summer camp of PIKPA Mytilini.
The transfer was a result of the pressure of the local society and the worsening weather conditions which followed and which could have had tragic consequences for the lives of the homeless refugees.
Continue reading Mytilini, 14.12.12: PRESS RELEASE
After visitin Lesvos Island, Special Rapporteur on the Human rights of Migrants Francois Crepeau commented on the solidarity camp in PIKPA run by activists and volunteers on the island:
Just before my visit to Lesvos, the local authorities provided facilities (a summer camp close to the airport) to house some migrant families. While I greatly appreciate this initiative, it is run by volunteers from the local community, and is not sustainable without support from Greek authorities. I thus urge the Greek government to support this important initiative, as well as the construction of more open shelters for migrants, which could be used as an alternative to detention, particularly for families and children. The Greek government should cooperate with NGOs in this respect.
Samos 07.12.12 – Movement for the Human rights – Solidarity to Refugees
Following the visit of members of the Movement in the coast guard facilities where 41 persons – among them eight newly arrived women and seven children mainly coming from Syria – are hold, and where we were asked to offer our support with clothing and hygiene articles, we noticed the following:
In this informal detention place of the Samos coast guards’ special forces men, women and children are closed up together with three penal detainees and one unaccompanied minor who is waiting since long time to be transferred into a special reception centre for minors.
The detention place is absolutely unsuitable and the detention conditions are miserable. There are no matresses, blankets, hygiene articles and there is only one toilette. The newly arrived Syrian refugees came wet and exhausted without being offered dry clothes or food.
The treatment by the authorities and the abolute lack of protection that the Greek government is encountering them with are reminding of darker periods when the informal detention centre of Kapnokoptiriou was still in function – a warehouse of souls.
The coast guard – the responsible ones for the detention – told us that they had requested support from all local authroities without receiving any responds.
SILENCE IS COMPLICITY
LETS NOT LOSE OUR HUMANITY DUE TO CRISIS
Civilians’ Initiative: “The village of all-together”
Within the last days the drama of hundreds of fellow citizens, which is already touching the limits to a humanitarian crisis once more evolves in Lesvos in front of the eyes of thousands of fellow citizens. Two months ago approx. active inhabitants of Levos, collectivities and NGOs, decided to build a network, to unite their powers and co-ordinate their actions with the aim to offer help to the ones really in need, when they recognised in time the catastrophic consequences of the crisis for all fellow citizens – migrants and non-migrants. In this way the «Village of all-together» was born. Our first demand towards the authorities was a few months ago to grant a place of shelter for the homeless migrants who until then were either wandering around our city desperately or being stuffed into overcrowded unsuitable places of detention. This demand was never answered at that time.
Today we, the members of the initiative, run a open reception shelter for migrants in the former tent-camp PIKPA, struggling daily with all our energy for securing food, covering basic needs, clothes, legal and medical aid for more than 60 migrants. Of course nothing could have been done without the massive solidarity of hundreds of fellow citizens who support until today this prototypical effort by cooking food, bringing warm clothes and other things they might lack themselves.
Continue reading Civilians’ Initiative: “The village of all-together” / Opening of PIKPA