Refugees block rail line at Greek-Macedonia border

Refugees lie down on rail line at Macedonia’s border with Greece to protest Macedonia for blocking their route toward Western Europe

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Refugees who are waiting to cross into Macedonia, sit next to the border fence in a makeshift camp, near the Greek village of Idomeni March 2, 2016.

A group of refugees blocked a rail line at Greece’s border with Macedonia to protest Macedonia blocking their route towards Western Europe, on Thursday.

The refugees laid down on the Greek side of the train tracks, preventing a freight train that had just crossed from Macedonia from continuing its journey south.

As many as 10,000 refugees, fleeing from war, are blocked at the border.

Macedonian authorities have said they will only let in as many people as the next country on the route takes in.

If it occurs, Macedonia will only let refugees pass through the country, with no refugee staying within its borders.

Greek police said that since 6 am Thursday, only 500 people have been allowed to cross.

Some refugees were turned back by Macedonian authorities who said their papers were not in order.

The refugees said Macedonia did not accept computer-generated stamps issued by the Greek police, and therefore they could not prove their documents are genuine.

Refugees wait behind portable barriers to have errors in their transit documents corrected by Greek authorities at a camp in Idomeni, on the Greek-Macedonian border on Wednesday, March 2, 2016.

One of the Syrian refugees, Adnan Abdallah had waited to cross from Greece to Macedonia for three days. When he finally was let through, he was turned back by Macedonian authorities because the stamp on his refugee document is computer-generated, a rule that wasn’t in place previously.

"They say here (in Greece) everything is OK, but on the other side [Macedonian border] this is not acceptable," Abdallah who is frustrated by the arbitrary treatment told AP.

TRTWorld, TRTWorld and agencies