A new documentary shared by UNICEF tells the story of young refugee boys on the Greek island of Lesvos living in the Moria camp, the largest refugee reception center in Greece.
Many of the boys fled various war-torn countries such as Syria and Afghanistan and arrived in Greece alone via Turkey. Now they reside in Moria’s section B, the area where all unaccompanied refugee and migrant children live in the camp.
In the video, the teenaged children share details about the conditions in which they live.
As many as 30 people pack into single rooms. Boys fight for food while waiting in line. And access to basic amenities remains limited.
The children also tell stories of loss — loss of family members, homes and livelihoods — that uprooted them for their countries and led them to Moria.
“The Taliban attacked our village. Because of this, I came here,” said one boy. “I heard my father died, so only my mother is left in Afghanistan.”
“I left Syria during the war. It was impossible to survive there,” said another. “You either become an insurgent or you can’t survive. Two of my brothers died and my mother and father died.”
The camp is a former military base that now functions as a refugee reception and identification center. It has a capacity of 3,000 but currently houses more than 8,700 people — including 500 unaccompanied children.
The children must stay in the camp until accommodation becomes available on Greece’s mainland, where UNICEF has called for the children to be transferred. The organization is also appealing to EU governments to increase pledges to relocate unaccompanied and separated children.
“You never know if it’ll be two, three, four months before you leave,” said one child. “Only God knows.”
Watch the video
* Film by Michail Gripiotis and Timour Gregory
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