Socialist Worker

Greece - migrants' daily battle to avoid the camps

Issue No. 2352

Tens of thousands of migrants have been rounded up into detention camps across Greece since August last year. Conditions are horrific.

Members of the doctors’ union were allowed into camps after a hunger strike last month. They found inmates with injuries consistent with severe beating.

Anyone found on the streets without the right documents could be whisked off to one of these camps. 

The police will search anyone whose skin colour looks non-European.

“It’s very frightening,” said Mohamed from Algeria. “Looking for work is hard. Sometimes I can get something on a low wage—building work for example—if another immigrant introduces me to their boss. 

“But whenever I go out of the house the police can see I’m an immigrant and they stop me.”

Mohamed has just been released from a cell in the local police station after more than a month inside.

“They didn’t tell me anything,” he said. “I thought I was going to be taken to a camp and stay there forever. That’s what could have happened if I didn’t have people outside organising to get help.”

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