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Stuck: Life inside Greece’s refugee c...
Katsikas
By Celeste Hibbert
15 Sep 2018

Over 60,000 migrants are stuck in Greece. Fleeing war, recovering from torture, and seeking refuge – pregnant women, children and parents wait (and wait) for their asylum applications to be processed. But patience is growing thin. Many migrants were doctors, lawyers and engineers in their country. However, they are not allowed to move out of the camp until their asylum claim has been accepted, which can take years.

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Stuck: Life inside Greece’s refugee c...
Katsikas
By Celeste Hibbert
14 Jun 2018

Many families sleeping on the floor of a destitute school on the border with Albania are Kurds. Inhabiting a mountainous region straddling the borders of Turkey, Iraq, Syria, Iran and Armenia, Kurds are the fourth largest ethnic group in the Middle East, but they have never been granted independence. Famed for their tough resilience, Kurdish militia groups continue to fight ISIS with the hope of recognition, and their own nation state. Instead, many are now displaced in Europe. This Kurdish boy is from Iraq, and restlessly waits for news of his mother and sister. They also fled Iraq, but went missing in the Turkish Maritsa river, and he doesn’t know if they made the journey….

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Stuck: Life inside Greece’s refugee c...
Katsikas
By Celeste Hibbert
14 Jun 2018

Whilst many have escaped war, and found safety, too many families face a new kind of danger: anxiety, confusion, depression and devastation. Last year, a migrant from this camp in Greece waiting for his asylum to be processed, killed himself. The Guardian also reported that at least three teenage refugees who arrived in Britain from camps have killed themselves in the past six months.

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Stuck: Life inside Greece’s refugee c...
Katsikas
By Celeste Hibbert
13 Jun 2018

Musham was selling potatoes, when a Russian airstrike bombed the market where he worked. 57 people died, and 75 were wounded, including many of his friends in what he calls a “massacre.” He lost his leg. “My wife ran out of the house barefoot with our two babies to find me,” he recalls.

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Stuck: Life inside Greece’s refugee c...
Katsikas
By Celeste Hibbert
13 Jun 2018

Rania’s husband was tortured in Syria. Accused of being a rebel, Assad’s government hung him for three hour each day, for six months in a 1 x1 metre cell with two other people. His shoulders have cracked, and he can’t carry his own child. “We had to sleep standing up, because there was no space. When you enter interrogation, you are totally naked, they told me I was part of a terrorist group. I didn’t do anything! People are dying and screaming in front of you. They hit you with electricity cables. The most difficult part is the hanging. You are blindfolded and lose consciousness.” Rania’s husband has found safety in Greece, but remains traumatized. “I just want to move on with my life, and help my wife and son – but we are stranded here with nothing.”

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Stuck: Life inside Greece’s refugee c...
Katsikas
By Celeste Hibbert
13 Jun 2018

Greece houses migrants in abandoned fields, rural towns and even a disused music school – many migrants believe it is because the government wants to silence and hide them. In one container, 21 people share one tiny room. The U.N. Refugee Agency (UNHCR) estimates nearly one in 100 people worldwide have been pushed out of their countries due to war or political instability. Many countries are unprepared for hosting and integrating refugees into society.

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Stuck: Life inside Greece’s refugee c...
Katsikas
By Celeste Hibbert
13 Jun 2018

His son plays with his prosthetic leg. The prosthetic is painful to wear: “It hurts my leg. I can’t walk properly, because the plastic is breaking. It is scarring the remaining part of my leg.” When it rains, his plastic leg fills with water.

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Stuck: Life inside Greece’s refugee c...
Katsikas
By Celeste Hibbert
13 Jun 2018

Musham’s son is four years old, and hasn’t spoken for over six months. He refuses to talk, or eat. His father mimics a plane exploding: “He is scared, of the bombs.” They fled Aleppo, a key battleground of the civil war. Many neighbourhoods have been completed destroyed. Most of the city lies in rubble.

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Stuck: Life inside Greece’s refugee c...
Katsikas
By Celeste Hibbert
13 Jun 2018

Rania herself was shot in the knee as the fighting intensified. She shows a picture when she was at hospital. “I was pregnant, but I lost the baby because of the bombing and the shock.” Rania was a professional photographer in Syria, taking photos of weddings and parties before the war began. Now there are no parties. Her family have been living in tents and containers for almost four years. “I don’t even have money to get my knee properly treated so I can walk normally.”

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Stuck: Life inside Greece’s refugee c...
Katsikas
By Celeste Hibbert
12 Jun 2018

Thousands of migrant children are not in school - an entire generation, listless and lost. Mona’s family fled ISIS in Iraq. She has never been to school. “I was given a school bag, but we have no teachers,” she says quietly. There is no policy or focus allowing for children to continue their education and Greek schools are underfunded, and can’t accommodate language barriers and children who have psychological difficulties due to war.

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Stuck: Life inside Greece’s refugee c...
Katsikas
By Celeste Hibbert
11 Jun 2018

Over 60,000 migrants are stuck in Greece. Fleeing war, recovering from torture, and seeking refuge – pregnant women, children and parents wait (and wait) for their asylum applications to be processed. But patience is growing thin. Many migrants were doctors, lawyers and engineers in their country. However, they are not allowed to move out of the camp until their asylum claim has been accepted, which can take years.

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Stuck: Life inside Greece’s refugee c...
Katsikas
By Celeste Hibbert
11 Jun 2018

Whilst Europe obsesses over economic migrants and politics, thousands of children and families seeking genuine refugee are left abandoned on our shores. Leaving bloodshed, arriving to abandonment.

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Stuck: Life inside Greece’s refugee c...
Katsikas
By Celeste Hibbert
11 Jun 2018

Many large NGOs have left Greece, leaving volunteer-run organisations like Refugee Support to supply essentials. Yet funds are dwindling, and as more migrants arrive – like Kazia from Iraq pictured - without housing or food. “We do what we can", says Refugee Support Founder Paul Hutchings. “But Europe is failing in its moral obligation to give people the opportunity to rebuild their futures. That's not going to happen while they are stuck in refugee camps.”

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 13
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
20 Apr 2016

Bilal,13, from Syria, is a self-described geek. He wants to study and learn English and German, but he needs new books and wants to reach Germany as soon as possible to go to school and learn more about the world. He sits on an abandoned car while translating verbs from Arabic to English.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 12
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
19 Apr 2016

R., 32, from Syria kisses her nephew. They live in an abandoned train at Idomeni railway station in Greece, at the border with Macedonia. Some 12,000 refugees live in small tents and the ruins of an old railway station in Idomeni.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 20
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
19 Apr 2016

A night shot of the border fence between Greece and Macedonia at the Idomeni camp.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 18
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
18 Apr 2016

Raha, 41, from Syria, is in Idomeni with two sisters. She waits to reach her two sons, aged 15 and 20, who arrived in Germany months ago. Raha is still stuck here after two months.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 19
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
18 Apr 2016

A Kurdish girl spends an evening playing with a recycled table football game at Idomeni refugee camp, a makeshift camp on the Greek-Macedonian border where thousands of refugees are stranded.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 11
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
15 Apr 2016

Panagiota Vasileiadou, also called "the Idomeni refugees' grandmother" is a 82 year-old Greek woman who houses five Syrian refugees in her home.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 17
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
15 Apr 2016

In a improvised cinema, refugee children watch a cartoon movie at the makeshift camp of Idomeni, in Greece. Movies keep refugee children entertained, despite all the sorrow and trials they face.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 10
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
14 Apr 2016

A Pakistani group of between 50 and 70 refugees live in an abandoned hotel building close to the Greek-Macedonian border in Idomeni, Greece.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 16
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
14 Apr 2016

Syrian refugees have dinner along the railway at Idomeni camp. The railway connection has been blocked for a month by refugees who are protesting Macedonia's decision not to let them through. Police have tried to clear the tracks but refugees still resist and occupy the railway while waiting for an European solution.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 08
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
13 Apr 2016

Asif, 23, from Pakistan, is living in an abandoned building with about 50 people along the highway that runs close to the border with Macedonia.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 09
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
13 Apr 2016

S. is from Pakistan and he lives in an abandoned building along the highway that runs close to the Greek border with Macedonia. He shares a little room with four to six other "travel mates". They have been waiting and surviving here for two months without electricity, windows, doors and bathrooms.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 07
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
06 Apr 2016

M., 24, from Aleppo, shows shocking evidence of torture in Assad's prisons. He says he was arbitrarily jailed and tortured for 4 months. M. is living in the ruins of an old railway station in Idomeni, Greece.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 15
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
05 Apr 2016

Around 12.000 refugees live in small tents and the ruins of an old railway station in Idomeni at the Greek border with Macedonia.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 14
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
04 Apr 2016

A Kurdish boy sits by a fire in a railway repairs hangar where thousand of refugees have set up their tents at the northern Greek border point of Idomeni.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 05
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
02 Apr 2016

Refugees queue daily for food in Idomeni, a railway station in Greece at the border with Macedonia.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 06
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
02 Apr 2016

People protest after mouldy food was given to a group of refugees in Idomeni camp, Greece. Part of a meal distributed by a Greek NGO was delivered rotten and was soon thrown out, leaving people very angry and exhausted.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 03
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
01 Apr 2016

Kurdish families have dinner along the tracks in an abandoned hangar of Idomeni railway station near the Greek border with Macedonia.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 04
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
01 Apr 2016

Idomeni railway station at night. More than 10,000 refugees are living in small tents and the ruins of an old railway station in Idomeni, Greece. The camp stretches out for hundreds of meters along the railway tracks that cross the border between Greece and Macedonia.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 22
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
01 Apr 2016

A veiled woman walks during the misty dawn at Idomeni refugee camp, on the Greek border with Macedonia.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 01
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
31 Mar 2016

A Muslim woman prays in the early morning at Idomeni refugee camp at the Greek border with Macedonia.
About 12.000 refugees are living in small tents and the ruins of an old railway station in Idomeni. The Idomeni camp stretches out for hundreds of yards along the railway track that crosses the border, and for hundreds of yards on either side. The vast majority sleeps in camping tents set directly on the muddy fields, or the coarse gravel of the railway tracks.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 02
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
31 Mar 2016

Migrants sit in the cold light of the early morning at Idomeni refugee camp at the Greek border with Macedonia.

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Idomeni Refugee Camp 21
Idomeni
By Francesco Pistilli
31 Mar 2016

"Hotel Hara" is a makeshift refugee camp on the forecourt of a petrol station near the Idomeni refugee camp, on the Greek-Macedonian border.

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Pagi: the Migrant Football Team in Italy
Sassari, Sardinia
By Alice Sassu
15 Nov 2015

Pagi is a migrant soccer team in Saridinia, one of the poorest regions in Italy, but a place where migrants were welcomed by immigration centers as a response to the immigrants’ needs, mostly boys from Sub-Saharan Africa.
 All asylum seekers want to find a job, however it is very difficult for them to do so in one of the poorest regions of Italy. For this reason the Cooperative decided to create this team to motivate and help these boys, who fled from wars, hunger and poverty that find themselves playing around a ball.
In Sassari, north of Sardinia, one of these centers called "Centro di Prima Accoglienza di Predda Niedda" created the football club ASD PAGI to help with the integration of young migrant boys.
Later, this club was officially registered in the second amateurs league. This is the first case in Italy in which a football club, entirely composed of immigrants without a residence permit and seeking international protection, has obtained from the FGC (Italian Football Federation) authorization to participate in the regional championship.
The immigration center was a hotel before, and it was called "Hotel Pagi". Nowadays, it is managed by the Cooperative ASD which created the football club ASD PAGI. It is the new home of approximately three hundred boys, most of whom come from different Sub-Saharan African countries like Nigeria, Gambia, Senegal, Togo and Mali. All of them are waiting the result of the Territorial Commission; the process can be concluded with the recognition of refugee status or subsidiary protection status, or a rejection, against which the applicant may appeal.

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Pagi: the Migrant Football Team in Italy
Sassari, Sardinia
By Alice Sassu
15 Nov 2015

ShortDoc by Alice Sassu and Francesco Pistilli
A positive story of sports and integration coming from Sardinia, Sassari. Boys who fled from wars, hunger and poverty have ended up playing with a ball.

In Sardinia, one of the poorest regions in Italy, migrants are welcomed at immigration centres as a response to their emergency condition. The former "Hotel Pagi", located in the industrial area of the city, is now the "Centro di Prima Accoglienza di Predda Niedda", directed by the ASD Cooperative. Pierpaolo Cermelli, Fabiana Denurra and a cultural mediator, named Ali Bouchouata, have decided to create a football team to motivate the young boys and to promote their social integration. The "ASD Pagi" team, coached by Mauro Fanti, faces now the final stages of the championship, in the second regional division.

For the first time in the Italian history, an immigration centre gets approval from the Italian Football Game Federation to participate in a regional football league with a team entirely comprised by asylum seekers, waiting for a residence permission.

The centre homes approximately three hundred young people from different countries in sub-Saharan Africa (such as Nigeria, Gambia, Senegal, Togo, Mali). Some of these people ran away from family feuds, religious conflicts and dictatorial governments. Some others found themselves without a family, or are simply looking to change their "luck". But they all dream with starting a new life in Europe.

Pending on the resolution of the Territorial Commission, these asylum seekers follow the legal steps of a process that will finish with one the following possible outcomes: a recognition of their refugee status, a subsidiary or humanitarian protection, or their deportation. The bureaucracy is way too slow, and the majority of them must wait at least two or three years to know their fate. Meanwhile, some of them try to defy the football teams of one of the poorest regions of Italy.

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PAGI Migrant Football Team 13
Sassari; Sardinia
By Alice Sassu
15 Nov 2015

After traveling thousands of miles across multiple countries, the players of ASD Pagi use their soccer matches as a temporary escape and a way to forget that they are still in search of a permanent home. Running on their dusty field with their teammates offers a sense of freedom and, perhaps more importantly, a temporary family.

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PAGI Migrant Football Team 04
Sassari; Sardinia
By Alice Sassu
15 Nov 2015

Compared to other regional teams, ASD Pagi sometimes struggles to practice before the season begins. At the season opener, they played on their home field but lost.

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PAGI Migrant Football Team 15
Sassari; Sardinia
By Alice Sassu
08 Nov 2015

With Sardinia already one of Italy's poorest regions, it i€™s challenging for refugees to find a job. Sometimes they are reduced to begging for change from passerby.