Greece to speed up processing of asylum appeals

first_imgThe European Commission has asked Greece to increase manpower in the services processing asylum seeker applications. Twelve panels are currently working on this, up from just five that existed in January, but authorities hope to have 20 committees running soon, in order to deal with the situation in the Aegean Islands, where thousands of migrants are still arriving daily from Turkey. The wave of human smuggling across the Aegean has decreased by 97 per cent, since Turkey signed an agreement with the EU to assist with handling of the refugee crisis, however thousands of migrants remain stranded in Lesvos, Chios, Samos, Kos, Leros and other islands of the region, where detention centres operate – many offering sub-standard conditions. The growing despair of migrants at such centres has been highlighted recently by the tragic deaths of two Syrian men – one found hanging at the port of Piraeus last month and another who died on Monday from burns sustained when he set himself on fire on March 30.The asylum application processing can take up to six months. Of the 2,580 appeals that have been lodged by migrants on the islands over the past year, only 1,300 have been processed (and of those decisions fewer than 100 are positive).According to European Commission data, during the past 12 months alone, more than 30,500 people landed on the Greek shores, coming fom Turkey, but only 944 were sent back, as part of the Brussels-Ankara deal. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img

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