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    A Syrian refugee couple carry their belongings as refugees and migrants arrive aboard the passenger ferry Nissos Rodos at the port of Piraeus, near Athens, Greece, January 13, 2016

    European Commission Observes Greece's Progress in Creating Refugee Centers

    © REUTERS / Alkis Konstantinidis
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    Greece has made significant progress regarding the construction of centers to accept refugees, Vice-President for the Euro and Social Dialogue Valdis Dombrovskis said Wednesday.

    BRUSSELS (Sputnik) — In January, the European Commission warned that it could reintroduce border control with Greece should the situation with Athens' obligations to control its border amid the refugee crisis fail to improve.

    "It must be said that progress in efforts undertaken by Greece in recent weeks to complete the construction of the hot spots has been quite remarkable, but let us not have illusions, more effort is needed on all fronts," Dombrovskis told reporters.

    The official added that Athens was implementing measures to address the shortcomings in refugee policy.

    Europe has been beset by a massive refugee crisis, with hundreds of thousands of undocumented migrants fleeing their home countries to escape violence and poverty. Many of them take the West Balkan route, which crosses Greece, using the county as an entry-point to the bloc from which they travel to wealthier EU states where they intend to apply for asylum.

    The International Organization for Migration recorded over 102,000 migrant and refugee arrivals to Greece by sea in the first weeks of 2016, tens of times more than in the same period of 2015.

    Topic:
    Major Migrant Crisis in Europe (1819)

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    refugees, European Commission, Valdis Dombrovskis, Greece
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