“Wherever you go they will just lie to you”
On 12th May 2016, 5 refugees from Lagkadikia camp went to the UNHCR office in Thessaloniki to complain about the broken promises (no access to asylum, familiy reunification and relocation) and the situation in the camp. Read more about the site and why people are disappointed by the UNHCR here.
The account below is based on the testimony of A., who contacted Moving Europe a day after their unsuccessful attempt to change the situation.
According to A., the group encountered two officers working at the UNHCR office in Thessaloniki. The first reaction from the officers was: “How did you get here? What are you doing here? This is an administrative office.”
One of the officers working at the office spoke Arabic and could communicate with the refugees. “We asked about the relocation program and about the situation in the camp. For how long do we have to stay here? We are tired of this situation.” The UNHCR officers replied that they cannot offer any solutions now and that the people have to wait and try with Skype, adding that they are just administrative officers and cannot help. They promised to send officers to Lagkadikia camp to check the situation, but nobody came so far. They also explained that services will get better and that people have to be patient.
A. said that he spoke to one of the officers about his desire to go back to Idomeni because of the miserable conditions in Lagkadikia. “Fine, go back to Idomeni but before give me your tent number so I can send another family instead!”, was the officer’s response. “They didn’t have any consideration to the human suffering, they just didn’t care about me”, A. explained to Moving Europe. “She didn’t even ask us to sit and have some rest, we talked at the door, she just wanted to get rid of us”, he continued.