Conditions on Lesbos intolerable for Europe

Delegation of church, state, municipal leaders and the social movement Seabridge wants to send a signal for humanity in Greece

The situation in the Moria refugee camp on the Greek island of Lesbos is becoming increasingly unbearable for the people stranded there. Currently over 20,000 refugees are staying in and around camps designed to accommodate 3,000. Protest against the conditions has been continuing, sometimes fiercely, for months now. All initiatives to allow families, at least, or especially vulnerable persons, to move elsewhere have so far failed - nor have any of them been permitted to leave Greece. By contrast, thousands of places in reception facilities are available in German municipalities and towns and cannot be filled.

From 27 to 29 February a delegation from the Protestant church and the federal state and local government level will pay a visit to Greece. The members want to express their solidarity with the people there and gain a first-hand impression of the situation on the ground.

Participating are: Prelate Martin Dutzmann, representative of the Council of the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD) to the Federal Republic of Germany and the European Union, State Secretary for Integration Daniel Tietze from the Berlin Senate, Lord Mayor Mike Schubert from Potsdam (the capital of the federal state of Brandenburg) and Mayor Thomas Weigel from Rottenburg. Representatives of the SEEBRÜCKE organization for safe havens are accompanying them.

On 27 February the delegation will meet representatives of aid organisations in Athens, and visit a camp for unaccompanied children. On 28 February the members of the delegation will be in Lesbos visiting Moria, including the part of the camp that is outside the official grounds. A meeting with Spyros Galinos, the mayor of Lesbos, is also planned.

For any inquiries during the visit, please contact Liza Pflaum, +49(0)178 3038787.

Hanover, 25 February 2020

EKD Press Office
Carsten Splitt