The government of Athens has called Greece a “souls deposit”. Every week, an average of 20 thousand migrants land there, on their route towards the Balkans. There are days when 1,000 of them arrive all together. Serbia, Croatia, Austria and northern Europe have decided to limit arrivals. Less than one-tenth of the migrants are allowed to cross the barbed wire that separates them from the hope for a future. Thus, in the refugee camp of Idomeni, on the border with Macedonia, people are gathering out of the tents, which are already overcrowded. Hundreds of them are accompanied to the center of the Greek capital. Children sleep on the asphalt, right on the side of the road, covered only by raincoats. They are Syrians, Pakistanis, Iraqis, and Afghans and the Macedonian government does not like the latter. After having queued for hours, on the border, thousands of them are rejected.
Athens has become a huge tent city. A family has built a house by tying together four iron fences. There are also angels in this purgatory: Volunteers who take care of the dignity of these unfortunate brothers and provide for their needs. These volunteers are doctors without borders who face the anemia of those peoples that wander like lost souls. They stopover in this country that was the cradle of the European and Western civilizations, which becomes their refuge and temporary shelter in hope of a new and more successful journey towards freedom and life.
“Greece will not become Europe’s Lebanon,” said the Immigration Minister Yanis Mouzalas, a few days ago, as Athens was withdrawing its ambassador to Vienna because he was not invited to partake in the Austria-Balkans summit on the migrants emergency. In fact, over one million Syrian migrants have been hosted in Beirut.