ΑΝΆ – ΜΠΑ — Greek authorities warned on Wednesday that the arrivals of refugees and migrants in Lesvos, the island which has borne the brunt of the refugee crisis and where numbers reached new records in September, has still not peaked.
According to new data released by police, authorities in Lesvos recorded 73,179 arrivals in September alone, raising the total number from the start of the year to 186,720 – a number equivalent to almost three times the number of residents on the island.
About 300,000 people have crossed into Greece since the start of 2015 and Lesvos has accepted the majority of these arrivals, they said.
A senior Coast Guard official told local radio station Aegean that October is the month when most arrivals have been recorded in the past few years and data so far show this “rule” will be verified this year. The same official said the deterioration of the situation in Syria and Afghanistan means that the waves of migration will continue undeterred.
October, authorities say, is the last month when refugees and migrants can cross relatively safely the Aegean before winter sets in, which means that hundreds of people presently staying in camps and streets in coastal Turkey will attempt to travel now.
Other officials said that in the last few days, 3,000 people arrive daily mostly to the northern shores of the island, even during the downpours, while last Friday, authorities recorded a record breaking 5,810 arrivals of refugees and migrants on the island in just 24 hours.