Over half of the refugees coming to the Greek islands of Lesvos and Samos in December were women and children, the UN has said.
In a new report for December 2017, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) said sea arrivals decreased to 2,300 people, with most coming from conflict-ridden Iraq and Syria.
The situation remains difficult for asylum-seekers staying amid unhygienic conditions in border reception centers, the UNHCR added.
According to the report, Greece’s government has accelerated transfers to the mainland and the UNHCR supported some 3,200 asylum-seekers, mainly vulnerable individuals or families who were authorized to move.
Nevertheless, arrivals continue in different parts of Greece. On Saturday, a vessel carrying 29 migrants and refugees ran aground in bad weather on Megas Lakkas beach near Lyxouri, Kefallonia after one of its engines broke down.
Recently, Greece’s Deputy Migration Minister Yiannis Mouzalas faced boos and jeers from residents of Chios, angry over violent confrontations taking place at refugee centers on the Aegean island.
Villagers from Chalkios and other towns held a protest at the island’s airport for the departing minister, calling on him to quit.
An overcrowded migrant and refugee registration center is causing great concern to islanders, as it is often the scene of violent confrontations between groups of migrants.
The UN body has also noted that “tension in the reception centers and on the islands has been mounting, exacerbated by overcrowding and poor living conditions”.