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Greece: Police move more homeless migrants to new tent camp

KARA TEPE – Police on the Greek island of Lesbos on Friday resumed relocating migrants rendered homeless when fires ravaged the country's largest refugee camp amid a local COVID-19 outbreak.

Of the 5,000 people moved to a new army-built camp on the island, 135 so far have tested positive for the coronavirus, officials said.

More than 12,000 migrants and refugees fled the fires that the Greek government maintains some Afghan migrants deliberately set last week to protest a virus lockdown at the Moria camp. Thousands have slept outdoors on a nearby roadside in the nights since the blazes.

Greece is one of the southern European countries that receives the greatest share of refugees and migrants from Africa and the Mideast. The European Union is preparing to issue proposals for a major overhaul of the 27-nation bloc's migration policies.

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis discussed the proposals as well as EU aid for Lesbos migrants on a video call with EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, his office said.

Police began moving more people into the new camp early Friday. Some migrants carried infants on their backs or pulled plastic vegetable crates loaded with their belongings. Others used trash bins and strollers to transport their clothes and cooking equipment.

Government officials said they expected the operation to last through Sunday.