Stand By Me Lesvos

Aid workers face new tests and challenges from the coronavirus |

On the small Greek island of Lesvos (also known as Lesbos), 21,000 people are crowded into the Moria camp, which was originally designed for 3,000 refugees. With no electricity and no drinking water, it meets all the criteria for the site of a rapid outbreak of the new coronavirus, if it were to get into the camp. “What happened at the beginning of March was an absolute scandal, a disaster,” says Thomas van der Osten-Sacken, a German aid worker who came in a personal capacity in 2017 to help the Greek association, Stand By Me Lesvos. He saw the shortage of human resources when he arrived in Greece, and he has also seen the lack of political response to the attacks by the far-right in recent months against refugees, aid workers and journalists.


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