A number of tourist agencies of islands in the north Aegean Sea are in uproar over the UNHCR’s tender for hiring hotel rooms for refugees.

According to a report in the Ethnos newspaper, the hotelier unions are trying to avert their members from submitting offers, in the belief that this will harm the tourist nature of the islands.

The president of the hotelier union of Lesvos Periklis Antoniou urged his members to “close their ears to the sirens” underling that the island is tourist and not a refugee destination.

Similar reactions took place on the islands of Chios (where refuges are already being accommodated) as well as Samos, where the local union president Konstantinos Kyriazis claimed “we have nothing to do with the UNCHR”.