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European commissioner calls for more EU aid to refugees after fire in camp

Xinhua | Updated: 2016-11-29 00:12

ATHENS - European Commissioner for Migration Dimitris Avramopoulos on Monday called on the EU members to provide more support to refugees, accelerate the refugee relocation program from Greece and Italy and send more experts to assist in the assessment of asylum requests.

In statements to the press in Athens, he said that Greek authorities are taking the necessary measures to improve the living conditions in reception centers, in particular after the fire which broke out at Moria hotspot on Lesvos island last week, Greek national news agency AMNA reported.

A 60-year-old refugee and her six-year-old grandson lost their lives due to a cooking gas canister explosion in early Friday.

Avramopoulos' remarks were made shortly after Fire Brigade extinguished another fire which broke out at a refugee hospitality center in Kilkis in northern Greece on early Monday.

A wooden structure used as a school for refugee children and three tents were burnt from the blaze. No injuries were reported this time. According to the fire service, the blaze was most likely caused by a short-circuit.

The Greek government has pledged to take measures to decongest accommodation facilities and improve living conditions, but also calls on other EU countries to offer more aid to handle the crisis.

More than 62,000 people are stranded in Greece since last spring, after the closure of borders along the Balkan route to central Europe, according to Athens' latest official account.

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