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News > Greece

Greece: Lesbos Camp Refugees Have No Protection From the Cold

  • Refugees on the Island of Lesbos, Greece, 2020.

    Refugees on the Island of Lesbos, Greece, 2020. | Photo: Twitter/ @franceculture

Published 1 December 2020

The refugees were transferred to the Kara Tepe area after the Moria camp burned down in September.

The NGO Refugee Support Aegean (RSA) reported that over 7,000 refugees, who live at the Reception and Identification Center (RIC) in the area of ​​Kara Tepe on Lesvos island, face winter with no protection against the cold.


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“There are not enough blankets. We do not know how we will go through this winter… What breaks our heart is that we do not have humane conditions, they perceive us as animals,” Saeb, a victim of torture from Afghanistan, said.

The refugees were transferred by the Greek authorities to that location after the Moria camp burned down in September. So far, however, the refugees live in unheated tents that are prepared to withstand the winter rains. 

“Despite government assurances on the improvement of reception conditions, coupled with the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, low temperatures and increased humidity, refugees, including hundreds of children as well as many people belonging to vulnerable groups, live in tents during winter, without knowing whether and when they will be sheltered in containers," RSA stressed,

This humanitarian NGO also mentioned that 2,400 children subsist in poor conditions and without access to any educational activity. Besides frequent power outages, the Kara Tepe RIC does not have good sanitary conditions as there are few showers and a large part of the chemical toilets no longer work.

Days ago, the Migration Minister Notis Mitarakis said that the works to protect the population from the floods and the cold have already been completed. He also announced that the provisional camp will be replaced by a new "closed" reception center, which will be ready in the summer of 2021.

In the first eleven months of the year, Greece received 9,675 refugees, according to official figures.

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