‘Greece needs support in helping refugees’, UNHCR Grandi says

“The refugee crisis a global issue. We do not accept unilateral actions,” Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras told UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi during a meeting earlier at the Maximos Mansion. “Greece needs support in helping refugees. Sharing responsibility (not closing borders) is the answer,” Grandi stressed.

Following his meeting with the Prime Minister, the UN official met with members of the ministerial council and later visited temporary refugee accommodation centers in Athens. Grandi also visited the island of Lesvos on Tuesday. During his visit he expressed his concern regarding tightening border restrictions on the hundreds of thousands who have fled war and conflict in Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq and other countries.

Grandi stressed: “I am very worried about the news we are getting about the increasing closures of the European borders along the Balkans route,” Grandi said. “Because that will create further chaos and confusion and it will increase the burden on Greece which is already shouldering a big responsibility managing these people. “We are worried that these closings are happening and that there are no corresponding openings through relocation and resettlement.”

Photo: UNHCR Greece