'Emblem' of Refugee Failure Is Being Dismantled

Greek riot police begin clearing Idomeni, peacefully so far
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted May 24, 2016 8:32 AM CDT
'Emblem' of Refugee Failure Is Being Dismantled
A bulldozer clears a makeshift refugee camp during a police operation at the Greek-Macedonian border near the northern Greek village of Idomeni on Tuesday.   (Yannis Kolesidis/ANA-MPA via AP)

An "emblem of Europe's failure to manage the refugee crisis," as the Guardian puts it, will soon be no more. At daybreak Tuesday, roughly one Greek riot cop for every 20 residents entered Idomeni, the refugee camp on the Greece-Macedonia border, and began clearing out inhabitants. That border was officially closed in March, after which point the now-8,400-strong camp took hold. The BBC reports the majority of people will end up at processing facilities roughly 50 miles to the south.

Some 1,100 people were removed by the afternoon, and earth-moving machinery was pulling down abandoned tents, per the AP; Greek officials hope to have the camp vacated within 10 days. The AP observes that the squalid, muddy camp "had begun taking on an image of semi-permanence," with falafel shops and other stores popping up. The clearing has thus far gone peacefully, say officials; journalists—save those affiliated with Greek national television—were barred from the camp so as not to "excite" the refugees, officials tell the New York Times. (Read more refugees stories.)

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