Violent scenes on the Greek island of Lesbos yesterday as police had to fire tear gas into crowds of locals who were protesting the problems on their island due to the ongoing migrant's crisis, which they claim is disproportionately impacting them.
Under the current EU-wide deal, any illegal immigrant arriving from Turkey, to which Lesbos is one of the closest Greek islands, can apply for asylum in Greece. However, given the current backlog and refusal of other EU member states to accept any more refugees, Lesbos is mostly stuck with them.
Yesterday evening, after groups of Greek men tried to push over a police bus, the security forces fired upon them with tear gas. The clashes lasted well over an hour, but in the end, no one was arrested.
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The protests were aimed against Greek prime minister, Mr. Alexis Tsipras, whose left-wing government policies have enabled asylum seekers to come in droves to Greece and stay there even though the country is faced with a crippling debt repayment.
Local protester Mr. Yannis Vaxevanis:"It has gone too far. Every day buses with refugees arrive, and they're full. The government has to do something and take the people somewhere else."
<blockquote class="twitter-video" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Here’s video of bus rocking on Lesbos. Happened repeatedly for more than an hour <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Greece?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Greece</a> <a href="https://t.co/iSQjH5r00P">pic.twitter.com/iSQjH5r00P</a></p>— Derek Gatopoulos (@dgatopoulos) <a href="https://twitter.com/dgatopoulos/status/992113479988531202?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">May 3, 2018</a></blockquote>
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Even the global NGO known as Doctors Without Borders (Médécins Sans Frontières) declared that Lesbos was “reaching breaking point”.
Official estimates are that every week some 500 new migrants arrive, mostly from Iraq, Afghanistan, and Syria.