The picture shows tents and children walking in the gloomy warehouse that is a former toilet paper factory.
  Inside the gloomy warehouse at Softex, a former toilet paper factory now housing about 1,000 asylum seekers. Photo credit to photograph: Patrick Kingsley for the Guardian.

Prisoners of Europe’: the everyday humiliation of refugees stuck in Greece

Article in The Guardian
6 September, 2016

“At the Softex refugee camp in northern Greece, it is lighter by night than it is by day. Inside this windowless former warehouse, the lamps only work in the evenings. That is partly because the place was not designed to house people. It is part of what was a toilet paper factory.

“It’s insulting,” says Hendiya Asseni, a 62-year-old Syrian, of being housed in a one-time loo-roll store. “But then everything here is insulting – the life, the food, the fact we have a toilet in front of our tent.”

This humiliation is the logical conclusion of the migration policies that Europe has pursued since the death of Alan Kurdi this time last year. Attempting to stem the flow into Europe, politicians have established a deportation deal with Turkey, from where most Europe-bound migrants depart, and built fences throughout the Balkans, trapping about 50,000 people in Greece.”

The last sentence of this article is ominous: “Greece could end up becoming a giant holding pen for refugees, performing the same controversial role for Europe that Nauru and Manus Island perform for Australia in the Pacific. If the situation does not improve, then what we have instead is an Australian-style system, where Greece becomes Nauru.”

To read the full article in The Guardian, please click here

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