January 18, 2017

After a week of extreme cold in the Balkans, thousands of refugees remain trapped in Serbia. The number of refugees in the country is unclear, but authorities give an unofficial estimate of 8,500. There are only 6,000 official spaces available in the reception centers, and only about half of those are adapted for winter conditions.

Around 1,700 refugees are living in terrible conditions in abandoned buildings near the city center of Belgrade while temperatures fall as low as -4º F.  

Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) runs a mobile clinic near these buildings and has seen an increase in the pathologies related to the weather and living conditions, such as respiratory tract infections, skin diseases, and frostbite. MSF also continues to advocate for long-term solutions for refugees trapped in Serbia.

Read Thousands Trapped in Freezing Temperatures in Greece and Serbia

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