A damning report by Commissioner for Children’s Rights Despo Michaelidou–Livaniou points out that children of asylum seekers at two reception centres in Cyprus live under inhumane conditions.
The report has been sent to three ministries – the Interior, Health and Education – noting that the two fenced centres are in violation of basic freedoms and children’s rights, Philenews reports.
The decision to fence off the centres of temporary stay at Kofinou and at Kokkinotrimithia areas substantially turns them into detention areas for the two months provided by law, she also noted.
Due to the coronavirus restrictive measures, entry and exit from the asylum centres is prohibited unless it concerns humanitarian, medical or other serious reasons. Such as for the purpose of appearing before Court with the relevant permission of the Minister of Interior in hand.
At the same time, UNHCR in Cyprus has said that the migrant reception centre in Kokkinotrimithia needs to be decongested to prevent more violent outbreaks at the overcrowded facility.
The UN agency also acknowledged the challenges faced by the Cyprus Republic due to the additional challenges created by the increased flows of irregular migrants.
Violent clashes between refugees and asylum seekers and the police 10 days ago had preceded the statement.
The UNHCR had called for the need to decongest the 1,000-capacity centre, which is currently operating in overcrowded conditions with 1,500 people staying mainly in tents, some of them for long periods.