Lesbos refugee camp at centre of Greek misuse of EU funds row


The conditions in which thousands of asylum seekers are being detained on Lesbos has unleashed a furious political backlash in Greece, as financing of the island’s overcrowded Moria detention camp comes under scrutiny. Tensions mounted after the defence minister, Panos Kammenos, filed a defamation action against three journalists, including the editor-in-chief of the Fileleftheros daily, after the publication of a report alleging misuse of EU funds.

Kammenos, who heads the leftist-led government’s junior partner, the rightwing populist Anel, accused the newspaper of defamation after it linked him to businessmen who had benefited from funds intended to improve living conditions in the camp. Fileleftheros claimed enterprises with “very close” ties to Kammenos had routinely inflated charges for services that ranged from catering to plumbing. It said projects were frequently awarded through fast-track processes without due diligence or being put out to competitive tender.The European anti-fraud agency confirmed on Tuesday it was investigating “alleged irregularities concerning the provision of EU-funded food for refugees in Greece”. Athens has received a total of €1.6bn in financial aid for refugees since 2015.(theguardian)…[+]