A vessel will be immediately sent to Lesvos to host refugees and migrants in order to decongest the hotspot at Moria where clashes broke out on Monday, Shipping and Island Policy Minister Thodoris Dritsas said to "Praktoreio 104.9 FM" on Tuesday.
"The ministry took immediately action to send a ship in order to host the people provided that the authorities consider it necessary and we also received that same request from Lesvos mayor and the regional governor," noted Dritsas and explained that he will sign the tender for the leasing. "We will expect any response until Tuesday night and on Wednesday a ship will depart for Lesvos," said Dritsas adding that "If needed we will send a second ship and this procedure will be short and will be evaluated de facto."
The vessel will be able to accomodate over 1,000 people and "will be used as a hosting facility noting that priority will be given to families".
Referring to unaccompanied children, he explained that they have already been transferred to PIKPA facility and a procedure for their transfer to Athens is currently underway because they are excluded from the EU-Turkey agreement. "This agreement has restrictions and this is the reason we can't decongest that islands quickly".
Asked to comment on Golden Dawn members' attack against a group of women in Moria, Dritsas said: "I can't confirm or deny it. I do not have official information on such incidents. At least such thing did not happen at the port. What I can say is that such phaenomena are unacceptable and condemnable".
More than 50 tents accommodating 800-plus refugees were destroyed in a fire that broke out within the Moria camp during incidents on Monday, according to the UN High Commission for Refugees, in addition to some 40-50 tents. The fire is estimated to have affected roughly half the population in the camp, or some 2,000 individuals, including 95 unaccompanied minors that were transferred to other facilities.
Once the municipality crews have cleaned up the Moria camp, UNHCR will pitch new tents and non-governmental organisations will distribute mattresses, blankets and water. About 100 family-size tents able to house 6-10 people are expected to arrive from Athens on Wednesday.
It is not yet clear whether the fire in the camp has destroyed humanitarian and medical aid, since a record of the damages has not yet been completed.