International Organization Report
Kos hosts the only pre-removal detention centre on the Eastern Aegean islands. Since January 2020, the Greek authorities have detained nearly every asylum seeker who has arrived on the island of Kos automatically upon arrival. This has historically included survivors of gender-based violence and torture, families with young children, elderly persons, LGBTQIA people, and people suffering from serious physical and mental health conditions. The automatic detention of asylum seekers is illegal under Greek, EU, and international human rights law, and yet the situation on Kos remains relatively unknown.
This report aims to highlight the importance of strengthening the multiple durable solutions available for unaccompanied children in Greece. These include family reunification for children with family elsewhere in Europe, relocation to other European countries, enhanced foster care support for younger children, and the provision of supported independent living (SIL) options for children over 16 years of age.
This is a summary of what was said by UNHCR spokesperson Shabia Mantoo – to whom quoted text may be attributed – at today's press briefing at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.