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Cyprus

Fifty refugee families evicted from Napa hotel over accommodation issue

The reception centre for asylum seekers in Kofinou

Fifty refugee families were almost kicked out of an Ayia Napa hotel they were staying at and put on the street, after their government regulated stay there had expired, and other accommodation had not been provided for them at any of the migrant reception centres or alternatives, it emerged on Thursday.

After a few hours, the issue was seemingly resolved, when the deputy ministry of social welfare stepped in, and said that it had agreed to allow the refugees to stay there for more time, while about half would be relocated to Kofinou.

According to a report in Politis, 50 refugee families staying at a hotel in Ayia Napa were forced out and almost evicted from the premises on Wednesday, after their three-month allotted stay had expired.

The refugees were staying in the hotel as part of an agreement with the state to house them temporarily there, until other accommodation could be found for them.

However, after the three months were up the hotel decided to put the refugees out on the street, leaving 50 family units, including mothers and children out on the road.

“My children are scared that the police will come to collect us or that we will have nowhere to sleep,” the mother told Politis as they stood out in the yard of the hotel for hours.

Eventually, the deputy ministry of social welfare stepped in, after images emerged of people out on the street, and one of the refugee mothers reporting that they were not informed about the eviction, but simply thrown out.

The ministry said that 26 of the families were relocated on Thursday, and that the rest of the families would be moved out of the hotel to temporary accommodation in the coming days.

The issue with refugees being evicted from hotels had happened in the past this year, when in March three women that had just given birth were evicted from the hotel they were staying at. The issue was resolved by the women being allowed to stay until such time when they were able to be transferred somewhere else.

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