Children as young as 10 have attempted suicide in a notorious refugee camp on the Greek island of Lesbos, a humanitarian organisation has warned.
More than 8,000 refugees and migrants are living in filthy conditions in Moria refugee camp, which was designed to accommodate around 3,000 people.
Fights regularly break out between different nationalities, many people are suffering from depression and now Medecins Sans Frontieres says it is dealing with children as young as 10 contemplating suicide.
"It’s something we’re seeing constantly," Luca Fontana, Lesbos co-ordinator for MSF, told the BBC.
Aid agencies have appealed to the Greek government and the UNHCR to transfer children and their parents to camps on the mainland.
"Despite the fact that we push to move these children to Athens, as soon as possible, it’s not happening. Those children are still here," said Mr Fontana.
Last month MSF warned that the situation inside the camp was “descending into chaos”, with frequent riots, clashes with Greek police and women subjected to sexual assault.
There are 72 people for each functioning toilet and 84 people for every shower that works. Other lavatory and shower facilities are broken and covered in human faeces.
“Part of the reason people’s mental health deteriorates so drastically here in Lesbos is that they come from traumatising experiences, and reach Europe hoping for refuge and dignity, but what they find is the opposite: more violence and more inhumane conditions,” said Giovanna Bonvini, an MSF mental health expert in the island’s main town, Mytilini.
The aid organisation says it receives around 15 to 18 referrals every week for refugees and migrants suffering from “acute mental health problems”, including children.
“The majority of these people are new arrivals suffering from psychotic symptoms including hallucinations, agitation, confusion, disorientation, and who have strong suicidal (thoughts) or have attempted suicide,” said Dr. Alessandro Barberio, an MSF psychiatrist at the clinic in Mytilini.
“We have also received an increase in the number of minors suffering from intense panic attacks, suicidal (thoughts) and suicide attempts.”
Migrants and refugees have been stuck on Lesbos and other Aegean islands that lie just across the water from Turkey since the EU struck a deal with Ankara in March 2016.
Under the containment policy, refugees are supposed to be sent back to Turkey.
But more than 71,000 refugees and migrants have arrived in Greece by sea since March 2016 and only 2,200 have been returned to Turkey.
Click Here: gws giants guernsey 2019