- Title: Greek islanders nominated for Nobel Peace Prize
- Date: 1st October 2016
- Summary: LESBOS, GREECE (FILE - OCTOBER 30, 2015) (REUTERS) COVERED DEAD BODIES LOCAL VOLUNTEER RIDING ON THE BACK OF TRUCK HOLDING DROWNED INFANT IN HER ARMS, COVERING HER EYES AS SHE CRIES
- Embargoed: 16th October 2016 13:00
- Keywords: Nobel peace Greece migrants refugees Aegean islands
- Location: LESBOS ISLANDS, GREECE/ AT SEA NEAR GREECE
- City: LESBOS ISLANDS, GREECE/ AT SEA NEAR GREECE
- Country: Greece
- Topics: Asylum/Immigration/Refugees,Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA003526VEBR
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Greek islanders who helped save refugees and migrants making the perilous journey from Turkey to Greece by sea have been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.
The nomination came from global activism group Avaaz, which has collected more than 670,000 online signatures to nominate the islander for the prize, saying islanders are "opening up their hearts and homes to save hundreds of thousands."
The islands in the Aegean Sea have been inundated with tens of thousands of migrants arriving on their shores in packed rubber dinghies, or being rescued at sea from sinking boats.
Lesbos residents, 85-year-old Greek grandmother Emilia Kamvisi and local fisherman Stratis Valiamos, are typical of the island's volunteers.
Emilia Kamvisi was captured in a photograph bottle-feeding a Syrian refugee baby in 2015 along with her elderly friends. Forty- year-old fisherman Stratis Valiamos has rescued scores of refugees from drowning with his fishing boat, witnessing drownings first-hand, including children.
In 2015 Greece was the main gateway into Europe for more than a million people fleeing war, persecution and poverty in countries like Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.
Greece, stretched to its limits after years of economic depression, has struggled to cope with the refugees and migrants, now numbering more than 60,000 in the entire country. Close to 14,000 of those are hosted on the islands.
Island volunteers and residents, besides taking part in rescues, have also provided food, care and shelter to the migrants.
But it could be difficult to identify Greek winners as the award can be split between individuals and organisations.
The Nobel Peace Prize will be announced in Oslo on Friday October 7, at 1100 a.m. (0900GMT).
The prize, worth 10 million Swedish crowns (1.1 million U.S. dollars), will be handed over on December 10, 2016.
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