There are more than 1200 Greek islands, and fewer than 300 of them are populated. An Egyptian billionaire is in talks to possibly purchase two of these islands to give refugees from Syria a place to land, and possibly their own ‘country’ instead of returning to a war-torn region.
While Syrian refugees have been flooding into Europe for months now, and many blame the West for the predicament by fueling conflict in the region, blame does not house the more than 220,000 refugees who have been forced out of their country due to bloody battles.
Naguib Sawiris is planning on possibly providing a peaceful home to as many as 200,000 refugees who could inhabit islands he is negotiating to purchase for a starting price of $100 million to get his project going. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees has shown interest in Sawiris’ idea.
Sawiris made his wealth by operating a mobile communications company with headquarters in Africa and Korea and the Middle East. He also owns an Egyptian television channel.
He envisions the refugees being able to build their own homes and grow their own food. He later wants to offer them jobs. A cost of $100 million is hefty price tag for humanitarian aid, but it’s a drop in the bucket for a multi-billionaire.
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