Greece/Macedonia border: refugees stuck in 'dire' conditions after Afghans closure
Worsening humanitarian conditions at the Greece-Macedonia border crossing of Idomeni have reached crisis point as an increasing number of refugees are stuck in dire conditions after Macedonia and Serbia closed their borders to Afghanis, said Amnesty International experts on the border today.
The discriminatory measures have exacerbated a humanitarian bottleneck in Idomeni and set a dangerous precedent as refugees and asylum-seekers attempt to cross through the Balkans.
Blocking specific groups from applying for asylum is contrary international and EU refugee law and can lead to the unlawful return of refugees and asylum-seekers.
Amnesty International Greece Director Giorgos Kosmopoulos said:
“With the Greek asylum and reception systems under strain, the humanitarian situation here is only getting worse as entire families are sleeping rough, without access to adequate reception conditions.
“EU member states need to immediately step up and share responsibility in responding to this crisis. The situation in Idomeni is at breaking point and EU leaders hold the lives of thousands of asylum-seekers in the balance.”
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