As Cyprus braces for an influx of Syrian migrants from Lebanon now that the Israel-Hamas war worsens representatives from all services involved in migration issues are meeting on Monday at the Interior Ministry.
The aim is to best coordinate an action plan in case more migration flows reach the Mediterranean island which has reached its capacity in terms of supplies.
Cyprus has already activated its national ‘Nafkratis’ plan, sending a request to the EU support mechanism asking for equipment, including tents and other materials.
Interior Minister Constantinos Ioannou has warned that developments in Israel and Gaza could impact Lebanon’s ability to monitor its shores. And this raises the risk for an increased influx of migrants trying to come to Cyprus.
He also said that only another 500 people could be accommodated at the “Pournara” first reception centre. And that, if this capacity is exceeded, space in “Lakes” area which again receives irregular migrants will be also used but it can only accommodate an additional 130 people.
At the same time, four more boats with a total of 194 migrants from Syria arrived in Cyprus from Lebanon at midnight last week, putting the competent authorities and especially the Search and Rescue Coordination Centre on red alert.
The boats were spotted off Cape Greco and were first taken to the private marina of Ayia Napa as well as to Larnaca port before taken care by authorities.