Tristan Azbej, Hungary’s state secretary in charge of aiding persecuted Christians, inaugurated a Greek Orthodox chapel on the island of Lesbos renovated in part from funds contributed by the Hungarian government. Hungary contributed 10 million forints (EUR 28,000) to the renovation of the St. Catherine chapel after it had been “vandalised” and set on fire by illegal migrants, Azbej told MTI by phone. The chapel’s renovation was also financed in part by donations from local churchgoers, he added. The inauguration of the renovated church was also attended by representatives of Hungary’s Greek minority self-government, Greek Orthodox Metropolitan Iakovos, the mayor of Moria and local officials. Azbej said he had been told by local and regional leaders about the “damage and devastation illegal migration has caused for the region over the last 5-6 years”. The attacks on local churches and chapels “are just the tip of the iceberg”, he said, adding that crime was “running rampant” in the area.
He said Lesbos officials felt that Europe has “abandoned them” and “hasn’t taken their interests into consideration”. “Europe hasn’t helped stop illegal migration and has only showed solidarity towards illegal migrants,” Azbej cited the local leaders as saying. The state secretary said the local officials were thankful that someone “has finally turned directly to them”.