Macedonia ombudsman slams government for 'degrading and inhumane' conditions in migrant center

Macedonia's ombudsman has criticized the government over its treatment of migrants, saying they are being held beyond a 30-day legal limit in "degrading and inhumane" conditions.

Macedonia has become a major transit route for thousands of migrants, mostly from Syria and Iraq, heading to the European Union.

Ombudsman Ixhet Memeti visited a detention center in the capital Skopje where 360 migrants, including 35 children, were held in a facility that is three times over capacity.

He told reporters Friday the migrants were living in squalid conditions, were poorly fed, and many were sleeping on the floor. He urged the government to limit their stay to three days.

There was no immediate reaction from the government. Since Memeti's visit, the number of people at the center has increased to over 500.