On the occasion of his trip to the Island of Lesbos in April 2016, the Holy Father Francis brought with him to Italy three Syrian families needing asylum, of which the Holy See assumed the responsibility of reception and sustenance, while Sant’Egidio Community followed the hospitality and the course of integration.
In the last month of May, three years after that event, the Pope requested the Almonry to return to the Island to renew solidarity with the Greek people and with the refugees and, also on this occasion, he expressed the desire to carry out a further gesture of solidarity and host a group of young refugees and some families from Afghanistan, from Cameroon and from Togo.
After an intense period of official transactions between the competent organisms, in order to bring about this new humanitarian corridor, the Minister of the Interior of the Italian Republic has given the definitive assent to carry out the operation.
Therefore today, December 2, the Almonry has gone again to the Island of Lesbos, together with some leaders of Sant’Egidio Community and will then return to Italy next December 4 with a group of 33 refugees in need of political asylum. This operation will end in the month of December, when another 10 refugees will come accompanied to Italy, thus initiating the necessary procedures for the request of international protection.
The reception of these refugees will be charged, also in this case, to the Holy See, through the Apostolic Almonry and Sant’Egidio Community.