AYS Daily Digest 02/07/17: Atrocious conditions on Chios

Increase in arrests on Kos / Scorching heat on Chios / Donations needed for the Refugee Community Kitchen in Calais / Last week’s march to the French border / And more news…

Drawing by a 9 year old Syrian boy living in Samos refugee camp. (Photo by Yesterday/Today/Tomorrow)

FEATURE: Scorching heat and deceptive asylum procedures on Chios

The section of the camp where refugees whose second appeal has been unsuccessful are living is “dangerously” hot, according to volunteers. There’s an effort on the part of volunteers to get battery operated fans into the camp to somewhat improve living conditions. While the heatwave seems to be over, very high temperatures are not going away.

Dreadful situation on islands is still not a topic for most of the European media. However, some, like DW, are describing the situation on Souda saying that the “conditions are atrocious and getting worse by the day”. The website also describes “deceptive asylum procedures”, with refugees pushed towards withdrawing their application for asylum.

The situation is not much better at Samos. Volunteers from No More Borders, No More Tears are warning that large number of people arrived over the last few days, adding to already overcrowded island. Many refugees are living in tents, with no shade, and also here there is a lack of water. Volunteers are trying to help, and to do that they need help and donations.

Temperatures are expected to reach up to 43 degrees Celsius in the next days and the situation can get even more difficult.

Meteorologists forecast unstable weather with local rainfalls and rainstorms and stormy winds over the next few days.


New arrivals on Lesvos

Arrests multiply on Kos

The group adds that some of these arrested immigrants had been living and working for many years in Kos and had been accepted as a part of its society.

Dirty Girls of Lesvos want your blankets

Photo by Dirty Girls of Lesvos

Dirty Girls of Lesvos have called on volunteers to let NGOs know that they want to be able to pick up dirty blankets for washing. This comes as the UNHCR and other International NGOs continue their environmentally unfriendly practice of throwing away dirty blankets instead of washing and returning them. The group has washed over 500 tons of clothes, blankets and sleeping bags since its inception and redistributed them to refugees. Their laundries wash blankets to hospital standards at half of what it costs the UNHCR to buy new ones.

Teachers needed in Athens

Photo by Asinitas

Volunteer teachers are needed for language classes at the Hotel City Plaza, a refugee accommodation space in Athens. People need to commit to at least one day per week regularly. Current available positions are:

- Adult English classes (various levels)
- Children’s English classes
- Children/Teenager beginner German classes
- Women only English classes
- Possibly adult German classes

More volunteer needs throughout Greece can be found on Greecevol.


Report on last week’s march to the French border

Refugees met and discussed several options, including marching towards the border, occupying a new space near the river, taking a train towards France or going to the Red Cross centre. The first option was rapidly the most popular and many refugees decided to press ahead with the march, despite the obvious risks, including police brutality and deportations to the hotspot of Taranto in the south of Italy — these deportations have become a sort of punishment for those trying to cross the border.

Molotov cocktail thrown on hotel in Brescia


Donations needed for the Refugee Community Kitchen

Photo by Sam Jones

The Refugee Community Kitchen (RCK) in Calais needs donations as health inspectors have forced it to build a new kitchen. Whilst this is being done, it has to set up a temporary field kitchen in order to be able to maintain the supply of hot food. To stop would result in hundreds of destitute refugees going without food in Calais. RCK is currently serving 2,000 hot meals a day in Calais and Dunkirk and makes weekly drops of food provisions for four unofficial camps in the Nord Pas de Calais area, helping around 500/600 people.

45937 persons detained in 2016


Fire destroys refugee camp

Photo by Qab Elias Emergency services

We strive to echo correct news from the ground, so let us know if something you read here is not right.

If there is anything you want to share, contact us on Facebook or write to: areyousyrious@gmail.com.

Daily news digests from the field, mainly for volunteers and refugees on the route, but also for journalists and other parties.

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