• Two groups of refugees from camps in Greece, Italy arrive to Spain this week
• Interior Ministry says more groups set to arrive for resettlement across Spain
Spain welcomed a group of 20 Syrian and Iraqi refugees from Greece on Tuesday, with an additional group of 27 refugees from Italy scheduled to arrive Wednesday, the first of nearly 600 refugees from the war-torn Middle East that Spain’s Interior Ministry has said will be resettled in cities across the country by the end of June.
Tuesday’s first group of eight children and 12 adults from eight different families are to be resettled in temporary accommodations with the help of non-governmental organisations in Catalonia, Zaragoza and Andalucia. Following Wednesday’s anticipated arrival of the second group of 27 refugees from Italy, additional groups of refugees are expected to arrive to Spain in the coming weeks to bring the total to 586 by the first of July.
Last year, Spain pledged as part of its agreement with the European Union to accept for resettlement some 16,000 refugees from camps in Greece and Italy; to make that quota, it’s estimated the government would have to accept some 2,000 refugees per month through the remainder of 2016, a rate of resettlement that most non-governmental agencies working with refugees in Spain say is unlikely to be met.