The issue of migrants is a major global issue. Greece has been facing it for a long time and they come from Turkey using the water route. An influx of migrants has a direct bearing on life in general and puts a strain on the existing infrastructure and Greece wants to halt it by installing a “floating wall” in the Aegean Sea. It expects such an arrangement to help curb the flow of migrants. No one in his right mind would want to leave his homeland and seek refuge in another country. He does it under compulsion due to circumstances beyond his control.

It could be a result of political unrest or climatic disturbances or to escape from poverty. Therefore, neighboring countries usually accept them on humanitarian grounds. However, they also put up their hands when the situation becomes unmanageable as is happening in Greece. It seems more than 18,000 migrants are accommodated in the Moria camp of Lesbos island.

Fox News says the government has set the ball rolling and the Defense Ministry based in Athens wants vendors to come forward with their offers.

The brief specifications are - its length which should be 1.6-miles. It should be of floating type net-like structure of height about 1.64 feet above sea level. There should be provisions of lights to ensure visibility at night. The contract would be worth about $551,000.

Greece unable to check the flow of migrants

Defense Minister Nikos Panagiotopoulos opened up on the subject to a media outlet.

He said - “The invitation for floating barriers is in the right direction. We will see what the result, what its effect as a deterrent will be in practice…It will be a natural barrier.” He also made a mention of a cement and barbed wire fence that came up in 2012 to check the entry of migrants from Turkey. International Organization for Migration reveals nearly 60,000 migrants arrived on Greek shores in 2019.

They landed on different islands. Many of them lost their lives in the process.

Fox News highlights the problem, which began in 2016 with the Syrian refugee crisis. Human traffickers would send the migrants across the Mediterranean using rubber dinghies and overcrowded rafts. It led to the loss of lives when the dinghies outturned. The Coast Guard of Greece linked up with EU border patrol to check the movement of migrants. However, the proposed sea barrier has not found favor with migrant and refugee advocacy groups.

In their opinion, its implementation would force asylum seekers to follow alternate travel routes that could be more dangerous.

Floating barrier to prevent the entry of migrants

According to the Guardian, the sea barrier could be in place by the end of April. The military would undertake the task of building it since they have experience of putting up camps across Greece. There are possibilities of extending the fence in case the pilot project is successful. However, the Greek government has earned criticism about its concept of a sea barrier off Lesbos. This was the island where nearly a million Europe-bound refugees landed on its beaches. It was at the height of the Syrian civil war. Amnesty International has also warned that installing such a barrier would increase dangers to asylum-seekers and refugees.

Migrants seen as a problem for the United States

The migrant crisis is not unique to Greece because the United States also faces a similar problem. While Greece wants to build a couple of miles of a sea barrier, President Donald Trump wants to build a wall between Mexico and America that will be strong enough to withstand breaking into. Its purpose would be to check the entry of illegal migrants who sometimes arrive by caravan. When they are unable to enter the US, the migrants try to go to Canada.