Fire breaks out at Greek refugee camp, thousands flee

No injuries have been reported and some migrants have now been allowed to return to the camp, BBC reported.

Published: 20th September 2016 07:12 AM  |   Last Updated: 20th September 2016 07:12 AM   |  A+A-


LESBOS: At least 4,000 migrants were evacuated from the Moria camp on the Greek island of Lesbos after a large fire destroyed tents and prefabricated homes, the media reported.

No injuries have been reported and some migrants have now been allowed to return to the camp, BBC reported.

Police are still investigating whether the fire was deliberate, but an aid worker says it started after a food dispute.

There are some 5,600 refugees currently in Lesbos, according to the UN, but the island only has capacity for 3,600.

The fire destroyed 30 per cent of the camp, according to Aris Vlashopoulos, an aid worker with the Swiss charity SAO.

"People are returning to the camp now as I can see. But the biggest number of the refugees are already on the streets, sleeping outside," he added.

According to Greek state news agency ANA, a brawl started on Monday after a rumour that refugees would be deported to Turkey en masse.

Many on the island are afraid of being returned to Turkey or their home countries, correspondents say.

The situation on Lesbos is exacerbated as many refugees land there and are held on the island until their asylum claim is fully processed.

Those granted asylum are permitted to journey to the Greek mainland, while others are turned back.

The procedure is part of the EU-Turkey deal brokered in March, in which the EU pledged to work towards visa-free travel for Turkish citizens to Europe's Schengen zone in exchange for Ankara's assistance in curbing migrants crossing to the Greek islands.

Stay up to date on all the latest World news with The New Indian Express App. Download now


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp