"It is already clear that the events taking place in Moria raise serious concerns over national security, humanitarian issues and the protection of public health," government spokesperson Stelios Petsas said on Thursday, during the daily press briefing.
"For these reasons, the situation that has arisen in Moria since dawn on Wednesday can't continue," he added.
According to the government spokesperson, "at the meeting held yesterday morning with Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis in the chair, a decision was made for a coordinated mobilisation to provide immediate support, housing, food and health protection to these vulnerable people, but also for decisiveness in guarding our borders, which are also the external borders of Europe."
The government spokesperson stressed that "some people do not respect the country that hosts them and are striving to prove that they don't want a passport to a better life. Instead, they take every opportunity to destroy every solution and ultimately perpetuate the problem. So they started a second fire that destroyed most of the facility late last night, leaving thousands of refugees and migrants without shelter, even families with children. And they did this because they thought that if they set fire to Moria, they would leave the island. We are telling them that they have misunderstood. They will not leave because of the fire, apart from the unaccompanied minors who have already been transferred elsewhere. Therefore, those setting the fires can forget whatever they had in mind."
On the economic front, he said that "from the first moment that the unprecedented coronavirus pandemic crisis broke out, our first concern was to support the labour sector. We have established and implemented innovative tools and programmes, in order to protect as many jobs as possible, to support entrepreneurship, to keep productive structures in place."
Petsas underlined that, since March, the government has implemented a bold set of measures worth a total of 24 billion euros, and added: "At the same time, we managed to keep some reserves in the state coffers. Our interventions are dynamic and not static. We are constantly monitoring developments and making improvements, extending the measures we have taken. We see what is happening in the real economy, we listen to society and we adjust our interventions accordingly."
He also referred to the phasing out of lignite. "Despite the adversity, despite the external challenges, the government is continuing the work of reforms and implementating its commitments. Yesterday, the inner cabinet approved the Just Transition growth plan for the phasing out of lignite in lignite-producing areas."
Next week the masterplan will be unveiled for public consultation, while its submission to the Commission will take place at the end of the year, he said. At the heart of the masterplan are 16 large investments, which will directly and indirectly create thousands of jobs that will cover those lost due to the shutdown of lignite plants, he added.
Petsas also announced that the prime minister is due to meet the Vice President of the European Commission, Margaritis Schinas, at noon on Friday at the Maximos Mansion.