REUTERS/PHOTO CREDIT: TWITTER
Residents on the Greek island of Lesbos went on strike on Monday to protest against European policies they say have turned it into a “prison” for migrants and refugees.
Islanders shut businesses, shops, municipal offices, nurseries and pharmacies and dozens rallied on a central square, calling on the government to transfer asylum-seekers to the mainland.
“Lesbos is not a place of exile,” a banner read.
Just a few miles from Turkey’s coast, Lesbos has borne the brunt of Europe’s migrant crisis. In 2015, nearly a million people – most fleeing Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan – landed on its shores before heading north, mainly to Germany.
It is now hosting some 8,500 asylum-seekers in facilities designed to hold fewer than 3,000.