“Migrants in detention: Lives on hold
Medicins Sans Frontieres (MSF) report documents the impact of detention on the mental health and well being of migrants and asylum seekers in Greece.
MSF urges the Greek governement to ensure humane and dignified living conditions in detention centres and to consider alternatives, especially for vulnerable groups.
Every year tens of thousands of asylum seekers and migrants arrive in Greece, the southeastern border of the European Union.(1) In 2009, 36,472 irregular migrants were arrested at the Greek-Turkish land and sea borders.(2) Many have left unstable or war-torn countries or are escaping persecution, human rights violations or extreme poverty. Afghans are the most numerous among the new arrivals, followed by Iraqis, Somalis, Palestinians, and Pakistanis. Unaccompanied minors and families are increasingly among those making the journey.
Lacking legal ways to travel to Europe migrants and asylum seekers alike are forced to use the services of smugglers and thus often fall victims of exploitation or violence by criminal networks.
Once they arrive in Greece irregular migrants and asylum seekers are systematically detained. They are kept in detention centers located along the eastern Greek borders or in other detention facilities, such as police stations (…).”