Italian troops and Red Cross volunteers Monday began sending thousands of Albanian refugees to camps and army barracks all over the country.
Trains took the first contingents totalling 1,400 refugees to a government storage depot that was converted into a camp by volunteers and troops in the space of 24 hours at a beach resort 25 miles west of Palermo, Sicily.Other trains and buses were leaving for camps at Jesolo, near Venica, Capua, near Naples, and to scattered sites all over the peninsula. One camp at Matera, 70 miles west of Brindisi, could accommodate 6,000 refugees in tents sent by the army and volunteer organizations.
Meanwhile, a three-member team from the United Nations High Commission for Refugees left Geneva for the Albanian capital of Tirana to determine how it might help with the flood of refugees. The UNHCR mission was sent at Albania's request.
The mission was led by Stephane de Mistura, acting as personal representative of U.N. Secretary General Javier Perez de Cuellar. Last week the U.N. agency urged Italy to act "humanely" in dealing with the flood of refugees.