Since about 6 months numerous refugees are living in the harbour of Piraeus. The Hellenic Red Cross is the only official organisation helping them there. Some other volunteers are trying to support those people as well. As far as our knowledge goes, the refugee camp of Piraeus isn’t an official one. We asume that this must be the reason that there is only little help available.
Intending to distribute some clothes we arrived at the harbour of Piraeus on Sunday. we wandered through the port terrain for quite some time recognizing no sign of the camp. Somebody told us that it had been completely evacuated. We didn’t believe this piece of information, though, since there were people with Eastern origin passing by over and over again. They always greeted us openely and friendliy. We had already observed refugees from Elliniko doing that. We eventually decided to follow some boy and he led us to the beginning of the camp. Two policemen demanded his papers which he didn’t possess. The police officers didn’t pay much attention to us, though.
The tents were put up on the tar in the blazing sun, hidden behind old factory buildings and port facilities.
The atmosphere was different than in Elliniko: The tents were put op very close to each other but still everything was deserted.
The people seemed to wait for something, a change, a future, that didn’t involve any hope. Everyday, busses come to take the people away. Nobody knows where exactly they’re brought to. This was confirmed by Carlos from Guinea Ecuadorial, somebody we talked to in Piraeus.
Ironically, they were sitting on a bench above which a sign with “passengers waiting” was hanging.
Another person told that the situation in Piraeus was really bad: They don’t have clothes nor food.
„Ahora lo unico que necesitamos es suerte o que dios nos ayude.”
Translated this means:
“The only thing that could help us now is luck or God’s blessing.”
The atmosphere was depressed, the situation of the refugees was miserable and hopeless. It seemed like the refugees were being hidden from the eyes of the public. The camp is being evacuated because the toutist season is about to start soon.
The day after, on Monday, we went back to Piraeus. A large part of the camp had already been cleared. The tent of a family we had seen the day before had disappeared. A whole gaped in between the tents.
The last people are now waiting to be picked up. They are “passengers waiting” as well.
God bless you and good luck,