Fire erupts at Greek migrant camp on Samos

ATHENS (AFP) – A fire destroyed tents at an overcrowded migrant camp on the Greek island of Samos yesterday, emergency services said, with an NGO warning hundreds of asylum seekers had been affected.

Several fires have broken out in recent weeks in the camp on Samos, which was initially intended for 648 migrants but now houses roughly 4,000.

In September, the Moria migrant camp on Lesbos island burnt down, leaving more than 12,000 people without shelter.

Eight fires trucks and 24 firefighters fought to put out the latest blaze on Samos, and the crews said they were hampered by strong winds.

They said nobody was hurt and all asylum seekers housed near the fire – which broke out near a makeshift restaurant – had been moved to safety.

About a dozen tents were destroyed before the blaze was brought under control.

The NGO Samos Volunteers said about 600 people at the camp were affected.

Greece has long complained of being left alone to cope with many thousands of migrants making their way to Europe through Turkey.

A migrant carries a mattress as others watch a fire inside a refugee camp on the eastern Aegean island of Samos, Greece. PHOTO: AP