Fire In The Moria Refugee Camps In Greece:

For years, the EU has accepted the misery in the Greece refugee camp Moria. Now the camp is in ruins after a fire - and with it Europe's asylum policy.

Nobody can claim to have known nothing. The Moria disaster did not just start with the fire from Tuesday to Wednesday.

It has worsened over the months, over the years, a little more every day. In the fire, it has now only found its sad climax.

Moria on the Greece island of Lesbos wasn't just any camp. Here the European Union wanted to reinvent its refugee policy.

In so-called EU hotspots, asylum applications should be examined within a few weeks. Recognized refugees should be distributed in Europe, and people without protection should be sent back to Turkey.

At least that was the promise of the deal that the Europeans negotiated with Turkey in 2016. None of this has ever come true.

The Greece islands have been turned into prisons:

Instead of processing asylum seekers' applications quickly, the Greece and European authorities held those seeking protection on the island for months, sometimes for years.

Hardly any refugees were brought back to Turkey, but hardly anyone was allowed to travel on to Northern Europe either.

The result is that Lesbos and other Greece islands have turned into open-air prisons. In Camp Moria, which is designed for 3,000 people, almost 13,000 asylum seekers recently lived.

Non-governmental organizations like Doctors Without Borders or politicians like Erik Marquardt have repeatedly pointed out the unbearable conditions in the camps.

Experts who had previously worked in countries such as Iraq, Somalia and Yemen reported that they had never encountered such dire conditions as on Lesbos. Greece and the EU just let it all happen.

In 2015, the federal government took in one million migrants. Since then, however, she has wanted nothing more to do with the issue of escape.

Like almost all other EU members, she hoped to be able to outsource the problem to EU border states such as Greece.

Most Europeans did not care that refugees lived in Moria in inhumane conditions, that children there took their own lives out of desperation.

The main thing is that the migrants don't make their way north again. But Greece is overwhelmed with the accommodation and care of the people.

Over the years, changing governments, both left and right, have failed to build a functioning asylum system.

The suspicion arises that Athens did not neglect Moria just out of ignorance. But that one consciously accepted the misery in order to scare off potential newcomers.

And the EU did nothing to improve the situation - Moria was their project. Now two disasters come together: Immediately before the fire, Corona broke out in Moria.

At least 35 sick people now wander around the island, thousands are without shelter. All of this was foreseeable. All of that could have been prevented.

Europe must finally agree on an asylum system:

It is actually clear what the EU has to do now: It has to evacuate the islands. The refugees have to be resettled in Europe, as experts have been demanding for months.

And then the Europeans must, finally, finally, agree on a common asylum system that distributes those seeking protection fairly across the continent.

Nevertheless, it is questionable whether this will happen. When asked about Germany's responsibility for the people in Moria, Chancellor Angela Merkel only said:

"If word gets around in Europe that all of the refugees who are now being debated will be accepted by Germany, we will never get a European solution." It was a statement of terrifying coldness.

The EU claims to be not only an economic and political but also a moral power. She has lost all moral authority on Lesbos.


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