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20 July, 2024
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Pournara: From 3145 to 245 migrants in two years

Government measures lead to significant decrease in irregular migrant arrivals


The influx of irregular migrants into Cyprus has markedly declined following stringent government measures. Illustrative of this trend is the Pournara accommodation center, which housed 3,145 people in April 2022—almost three times its capacity at the time. Fast forward to December 2023, the number dropped to 948, and today, only 254 individuals remain at Pournara.

In terms of arrivals, data obtained by Kathimerini shows a notable reduction from 21,565 arrivals in 2022 to 10,991 in 2023. Arrivals via the Green Line similarly decreased from 16,501 in 2022 to 6,732 in 2023. Notably, arrivals from African countries also saw a significant drop, declining to 2,607 in 2023 from 9,384 in 2022.

Cyprus has been lauded within the European Union for its effective handling of migration issues. Home Affairs Commissioner Ms. Johansson praised the country during her January visit, highlighting "impressive progress and an increase in returns." In 2022, Cyprus saw 7,700 individuals voluntarily returning to their countries, a number that rose to 12,750 in 2023.

The appointment of Nicholas Ioannidis as Deputy Minister of Immigration and International Protection marks a crucial step, according to Government Spokesman Konstantinos Letibiotis. In a written statement, Letibiotis emphasized that "the establishment of the Deputy Ministry is an important milestone for our country in terms of the effective management of migration."

Cyprus  |  migration  |  migrants

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