ATHENS – With waves of illegal immigrants coming by land and water, Greece will ask the European Union for 30 million euros of emergency funds to cope.
The EU is already due to give Greece 470 million euros by 2020 for immigration-related matters, such as covering the cost of an asylum service and reception centers.
But that covers only covers existing operations and cannot be used to tackle problems caused by the spike in migrants reaching Greece over the last few months. The newspaper Kathimerini said the government, which is moving to release illegal immigrants from detention centers, needs more money.
The new coalition government led by the Radical Left SYRIZA party doesn’t want illegal immigrants detained but wants more money to hire a ferry to take them from islands where they land, if they don’t drown trying, to be taken to reception centers instead.
The government also has moved to grant asylum to about 50 percent of the applicants, up from 0.001 percent. The government said to Parliament a bill allowing the waiving of seeking bids for immigrant-related projects, allowing it to give EU money to anyone it wants.