July 17, 2009
A makeshift migrants’ camp in Patras, Greece, was demolished on July 12 during a police operation that ended in fire. Micky van Gerven, Head of Mission for the Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) project for migrants, asylum-seekers, and refugees in Greece, talks about the situation in the city and expresses MSF’s concern over the medical and mental health conditions of the people who lost all their belongings and were left homeless.
The team in Patras is following their patients where they have gone. They are giving medical and psychosocial assistance to those who have gathered in different parts of the city and are monitoring the health situation of other groups. Over the last three days, the team has distributed hygiene material, sleeping bags, and food to those who have nothing left.
The minors need special attention. They went through similar hardships, but are obviously more vulnerable. We know that the Ministry of Health is in principle taking care of them by providing care and accommodation for them in special centers, but we also know that these centers are already overcrowded and that many of the minors are being held in detention centers or end up in the streets without any protection.
© 2013 Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF)