Tag Archives: Ritsona

2016-greece-eca-refugees-2

At Piraeus near Athens

There are 48,795 refugees in Greece today.

Further to this…

A report, published today by Human Rights Watch, states:

In a visit to Piraeus (the main port near Athens) from March 8 to 22, 2016, Human Rights Watch interviewed more than 45 asylum seekers and migrants who had recently arrived at the port from Greek Aegean islands or Greece’s border with the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. An estimated 5,000 women, men, and children are sleeping in squalid, unsanitary, and unsafe conditions in passenger waiting areas, in an old warehouse, in tents outdoors, and even under trucks.

In the absence of any visible government support or personnel, the day-to-day operation of the camps is dependent on volunteers. These volunteers work to coordinate, among other things, the provision of tents, blankets, food, and clothing; identify vulnerable groups; and provide activities for children. For the most part, medical care is provided by aid groups.

….With no presence of the Greek Asylum Service, nor of any other officials who could provide people with much-needed information about their options in Greece and elsewhere, rumors are creating uncertainty and confusion, Human Rights Watch found.

Some people interviewed said they were afraid they would be deported to Turkey if they boarded one of the government-run buses transferring people to official reception camps in an effort to clear the port.

Many others had heard that conditions at the government-run camps were not good, prompting them to stay at the port until the “borders open.” Others said they had gone to the camps but found the conditions so bad that they returned to the port.

“I’ve been here [in Greece] for one month and not even one drop of water has touched my body,” said Nawael, a 34-year-old Syrian woman in a wheelchair who has been in Piraeus with her husband and three children for more than 10 days.

“Here it is very hard for me to go to the toilet. My husband helps me at the door and random women help me inside the toilet. I don’t sleep at night because my body is itchy. My husband helped me and I washed my hair with cold water, but then I got sick. Ten days ago, I got my period and I swear to God, I still haven’t had a shower. And I [usually] pray, but given that I haven’t had a shower [to perform required ablutions], I can’t pray.”

Meanwhile, at an open refugee camp recently built in Ritsona, some 70km north of Athens….

Greece: Humanitarian crisis at Athens Port (Human Rights Watch)

Previously: ‘Facilitating The Very Circumstances That Made These People Refugees’

Yesterday: Meanwhile In Lesbos

Thanks Damian Mac Con Uladh