World

Overwhelmed authorities on Greek holiday island of Kos race to ease number of trapped refugees

  • Migrants on a dinghy arrives at the southeastern island of Kos, Greece, after crossing from Turkey, Thursday, Aug. 13, 2015. Greece has become the main gateway to Europe for tens of thousands of refugees and economic migrants, mainly Syrians fleeing war, as fighting in Libya has made the alternative route from north Africa to Italy increasingly dangerous. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

    Migrants on a dinghy arrives at the southeastern island of Kos, Greece, after crossing from Turkey, Thursday, Aug. 13, 2015. Greece has become the main gateway to Europe for tens of thousands of refugees and economic migrants, mainly Syrians fleeing war, as fighting in Libya has made the alternative route from north Africa to Italy increasingly dangerous. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)  (The Associated Press)

  • Migrants family members hug each other after successfully arriving at a coast on a dinghy after crossing from Turkey, in the southeastern island of Kos, Greece, early Thursday, Aug. 13, 2015. Greece has become the main gateway to Europe for tens of thousands of refugees and economic migrants, mainly Syrians fleeing war, as fighting in Libya has made the alternative route from north Africa to Italy increasingly dangerous. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

    Migrants family members hug each other after successfully arriving at a coast on a dinghy after crossing from Turkey, in the southeastern island of Kos, Greece, early Thursday, Aug. 13, 2015. Greece has become the main gateway to Europe for tens of thousands of refugees and economic migrants, mainly Syrians fleeing war, as fighting in Libya has made the alternative route from north Africa to Italy increasingly dangerous. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)  (The Associated Press)

  • A migrant girl looks towards the see as they arrive on a dinghy at the southeastern island of Kos, Greece, after crossing from Turkey, Thursday, Aug. 13, 2015. Greece has become the main gateway to Europe for tens of thousands of refugees and economic migrants, mainly Syrians fleeing war, as fighting in Libya has made the alternative route from north Africa to Italy increasingly dangerous. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

    A migrant girl looks towards the see as they arrive on a dinghy at the southeastern island of Kos, Greece, after crossing from Turkey, Thursday, Aug. 13, 2015. Greece has become the main gateway to Europe for tens of thousands of refugees and economic migrants, mainly Syrians fleeing war, as fighting in Libya has made the alternative route from north Africa to Italy increasingly dangerous. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)  (The Associated Press)

Greek police registration officers working around the clock have greatly reduced the numbers of Syrian refugees stuck in miserable conditions on the holiday island of Kos, where hundreds arrive daily in packed boats from Turkey.

A rudimentary processing center set up in a stadium on Kos was largely empty Thursday morning after police issued temporary travel papers to at least 1,000 men, women and children.

But large numbers of refugees remain camped outside the stadium waiting to register. The influx has overwhelmed local authorities.

More than 200 people, mainly Syrian Kurds from the war-devastated town of Kobani, arrived early Thursday, in at least six rubber boats. Another group of refugees was picked up at sea by a coast guard launch.