NEWS

Refugees struggling with mental health

TAGS: Migration

Refugees and migrants stranded in camps across Greece suffer from increased instances of mental illness, according to a report, Greece in 2016: Vulnerable People Left Behind, published by the international aid group Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders).

In its report, the Paris-based humanitarian group said that refugees in Greece suffer from conditions ranging from insomnia and persistent headaches to depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and other psychosomatic problems.

“Sleeping disorders, a loss of appetite, an inability to concentrate and depression-related reactions are just a few of the symptoms that refugees display, ” Christina Sideri, a Medecins Sans Frontieres psychologist in Malakasa, told the Athens News Agency, adding that older people and children suffer from back pains and stomach aches.

The aid group attributes the increased mental stress burdening refugees to experiences suffered in their countries of origin, the hardships they encountered on their migratory route and the living conditions they endure at migrant camps.

Medecins Sans Frontieres also said that refugees at camps in Greece continue to live in mostly “appalling conditions” and suggested that there was a lack of political will to tackle the problem, both in Greece and in other European Union member-states.

More than 50,000 refugees that fled war and strife in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan have been stranded in overcrowded camps in Greece since several EU nations closed their borders earlier this year.
 

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