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26 Apr, 2016 15:33

Riot, fire at Greek refugee camp after police 'hit child'

Police have reportedly deployed tear gas against refugees on the Greek island of Lesbos as the unrest continued into the evening. Explosions were heard inside the Moria camp, with ambulances removing the injured from the site, according to social media accounts.

A social media report claimed that two ambulances, which arrived at the camp, were “loaded” when they left for the hospital.

The clashes reportedly erupted again when Greek Migration Policy chief, Ioannis Mouzalas, was visiting the refugee camp on Tuesday.

The riot at Moria started earlier in the day after a police officer allegedly hit a child.

One report on Twitter said that refugees have “taken over” the camp, broadcasting “Freedom! Freedom!” over the PA system.

Fences have reportedly been torn down by protesters. 

NGOs have evacuated the camp, according to freelance journalist Andrew Connelly. 

Protests and violence have become commonplace in Greece, where more than 50,000 refugees have been stranded since Macedonia and other Balkan countries shut their borders in February. 

One camp was recently described as a "modern Dachau" by Greek Interior Minister Panagiotis Kouroumplis. 

The EU struck a deal with Turkey in March, in an effort to alleviate the strain placed on Greece. Under the agreement, illegal migrants reaching Greece from Turkey are returned. In exchange, the EU agreed to take in thousands of Syrian refugees from Turkey. 

Europe continues to face the biggest refugee crisis since World War II, with over a million migrants arriving last year. Most of the asylum seekers come from Syria, where a civil war has killed 250,000 people and displaced more than 12 million since 2011, according to UN figures.