13:03 GMT19 January 2021
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    Major Migrant Crisis in Europe (1819)
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    Violence has erupted between migrants and refugees stuck on no man's land between Greece and Macedonia after the non-EU Balkan states decided to screen people based on their nationality.

    Macedonia has stopped allowing migrants to cross the border unless they are from Syria, Iraq or Afghanistan and considered to be refugees. People from Pakistan, Iran, Morocco and Bangladesh are being held back —they are considered economic migrants.

    Around 1,500 people from Pakistan, Morocco and Iran remain stranded in squalid conditions near the Greek town of Idomeni in freezing temperatures. As tensions rose a group of 500 migrants built a roadblock to stop refugees from crossing, shouting:

    "If we don't cross, no one does."

    Tensions escalated after a Moroccan man was electrocuted and burned to death when he climbed on top of a train.

    A group of migrants using wood and metal and empty barrels to make a roadblock 120 meters back from the Greek and Macedonian border are preventing all Syrian, Afghan and Iraqi refugees from passing into the area.

    According to Greek police there are 2,500 refugees and 3,000 migrants camped on the Idomeni border. Violent scuffles have since broken out between the two groups and food from a refugee camp was looted. Macedonian police responded by firing rubber bullets and tear gas.

    And still the buses keep arriving, delivering around 7,000 desperate people to no-man's land on a daily basis. According to Balkan Newsbeat, police have moved in to clear Idomeni and blocked all entry to Macedonia offering trains back to Athens and Thessaloniki in Greece instead.

    More than 800,000 people from the Middle East, Asia and Africa have arrived in Europe so far this year and while countries erect unofficial borders and fences, migrants appear to be taking matters into their own hands, especially in Macedonia.

    Topic:
    Major Migrant Crisis in Europe (1819)

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    Tags:
    economic migrants, refugee crisis, roadblocks, asylum seekers, humanitarian crisis, Syrian conflict, protest, migrants, European Union, Europe, Macedonia, Greece
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