Newly arrived asylum seekers in mainland Greece live in a makeshift camp near the old railway station in central Thessaloniki, due to the shortage of reception places.

As the Diavata temporary accommodation facility has reached full capacity due to an increasing number of arrivals via the Evros land border, tens of people left destitute resort to informal accommodation under squalid conditions and without shelter from winter temperatures. The emergence of makeshift camps follows reports of refugees sleeping rough in the city centre’s Aristotelous Square last year.

Several persons report having been left without access to reception centres for months, and having to find a place to sleep while being given access to Diavata, over 8km away from the old train station, only for showers. In January 2019, refugees residing in Diavata protested against substandard living conditions by blocking the road in front of the centre for two hours.

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This information was first published in a more extensive version by AIDA managed by ECRE*

This article appeared in the ECRE Weekly Bulletin . You can subscribe to the Weekly Bulletin here.