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Panayiotis Varouchas:"We΄re talking about human beings! Of course Corfu should accept refugees and immigrants"

09 Oct 2019 / 13:11

CORFU. The Central Corfu & Diapontia Islands Municipality Deputy Mayor for Tourism is adamant that the acceptance of refugees and immigrants is not a threat to tourism.

Deputy Mayor for Tourism Panayiotis Varouchas made it clear that he is in favour of accepting refugees and immigrants in Corfu if it is considered necessary by the Ministry.

Mr. Varouchas told the local ERT radio station that in no way will the acceptance of a number of refugees and immigrants have a negative effect on Corfu's tourist industry. He said we are talking about human lives and that is how we should approach the matter.

"I think it's wrong that just one destination - such as Samos, Mitilene or Kos - should suffer just because they are located near to Turkey. It's a problem that affects the whole country - thousands of people need to be accommodated somewhere," Mr Varouchas said.

"It's the same as with the problem with the rubbish," he added. "Everyone wants to send it somewhere else - North, South, anywhere. But in this case we're talking about human beings. These people need to be accommodated somewhere. If they need to stay in Corfu, then why not? Let them stay here as well.

How can we say that 1,000 or 2,000 refugees will affect our tourism? No way! All these years it hasn't been affected by the condition of our infrastructure.."

The Deputy Mayor concluded by saying, "So, I disagree with the tourism professionals and if it is necessary for a business to accommodate some refugees, of course they should do it. We can't say that Corfu is the Countess of the Ionian and we don't want refugees. I believe that these people will in no way devalue our tourist product."