News Local The situation of refugees and asylum seekers in Cyprus

The situation of refugees and asylum seekers in Cyprus

The University of Cyprus (UCY) and UNHCR Cyprus presented a study on the situation of refugees and asylum seekers in the country, on Wednesday, April 17.

The study highlighted the biggest problems that refugees and asylum seekers face in Cyprus as the following:

  • Inadequate monetary support for a decent standard of living
  • Poor quality of living conditions in Reception Centres
  • Delays and limitations stemming from the vouchers scheme
  • Social Welfare Services are understaffed
  • Insufficient psycho-social support
  • Structural limitations in access to the labour market
  • Unequal access to Health Services
  • Unequal treatment of refugee and asylum seeker children in education
  • Unequal treatment of adults

Two refugees who study at UCY spoke during the presentation. Mazlum Aksu of the Department of Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies and Prisca Salama Totoro of the Law Department shared their experiences and the difficulties they face in Cyprus.

The presentation was moderated by professor Charis Psaltis of the Department of Psychology.

Head of UNHCR Cyprus Katja Saha Savarimuthu, the head of the Asylum Service Stavros Christofi, the permanent secretary of the Labour Ministry Christos Malikkides and UCY rector Tasos Christofides made statements during the presentation.

According to a recent UCY study, 55% Greek Cypriots view refugees and asylum seekers positively, 32% said they are neutral and 13% expressed negative feelings and perceptions about them.

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