Fire destroys Europe’s largest refugee camp harbouring 4000 children

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A scene of a fire outbreak that completely destroyed Europe’s largest refugee camp in Moria, Greece’s Lesbos Island, habouring about 4000 children. Photo credit: independent.co.uk

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A fire completely destroys Europe’s largest refugee camp in Greece harbouring 4000 children in Greece

UNHCR says the refugee camp is a home for an estimated 13,000 people (6 times more than its maximum capacity of 2,200); 4,000 of which are children, including 407 unaccompanied minors

A fire has destroyed Europe’s largest refugee camp in Moria, Greece’s Lesbos Island, habouring about 4000 children according to a reputable international media report.

The refugee camp is a home for an estimated 13,000 people (6 times more than its maximum capacity), 4,000 of which are children, including 407 unaccompanied minors, according to the United Nations Refugee Agency, UNHCR.

 

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George Moutafis, a photographer on the ground, told Greek TV channel Mega that the camp had been completely destroyed but there are no reports of injuries so far, and authorities have said they are still assessing the scope of the damage.

George Moutafis also said that the containers and tents in The Moria Camp of migrants and refugees in Greece no longer exists having been completely destroyed by the fire disaster and charity and activist groups around also say that the fire has destroyed large swathes of the camp

Many migrants and refugees are now back at the camp and looking for their belongings as the fires quenched.

The Greek authorities are uncertain about the root cause of the fire but Local media suspected that the fires may have been started deliberately since the camp is under lockdown after 35 people tested positive of coronavirus.

A camp resident said that last night some people living in the camp who were angry about the quarantine started a small fire and the fire grew after the police came and used tear gas to disperse them.

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis has held an emergency meeting over the fires and the Government Spokesman Stelio Petsas said a state of emergency was being declared on the island and that Moria’s inhabitants would be banned from leaving the island over coronavirus concerns.

According to a statement released by UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, the international organization, condemned the fire that largely destroyed Moria’s Registration and Identification Center (RIC) last night and thanks to the local authorities, including the fire department and emergency services that helped to contain the fire and assisted the people.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas has called the fire that ravaged Moria a “humanitarian catastrophe.”

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