Moria fires update: On Tuesday 8 September a huge fire destroyed the Moria camp on the Greek island of Lesvos.
Around 12,000 people, including large numbers of children, are now on the streets. MSF’s Marco Sandrone described the scene:
"We saw the fire spread across Moria and rage all night long. The whole place was engulfed in flames, we saw an exodus of people from a burning hell with no direction. Children scared and parents in shock. We are working now to address their needs."
This now makes it yet more urgent for the UK Government to act to help unaccompanied children trapped on the Greek islands. Please read on to find out how you can support.
In MSF's paediatric clinic on the Greek island of Lesvos, our medical teams treat children with complex medical conditions. Some are life-threatening, such as asthma, epilepsy and injuries sustained from war.
Our mental health specialists regularly see children – some younger than six years old – suffering from depression and anxiety, and others who are self-harming or attempting suicide.
These children are trapped in squalid, unhygienic camps which are now even more dangerous due to the threat of COVID-19. They desperately need to get to a place of safety.
But now, the British Government is cutting off crucial routes which allow these children to find sanctuary in the UK.
We need your help to ensure those routes remain open.
The conditions in camps like 'Olive Grove' on Lesvos are abysmal. © Anna Pantelia/MSF
The UK Government recently closed a scheme which, for those children without families in the UK, was the only way they could find a route to safety in our country.
Members of Parliament from across the main parties have proposed a measure which would have preserved these routes – but the Government has so far blocked it.
There is still, however, a chance for the Government to change its position.
MSF regularly conducts vaccination campaigns for migrant children on Lesvos island. © Anna Pantelia/MSF
We are asking for provisions to help unaccompanied children to be included in the Immigration Bill, which is currently going through Parliament. We are also calling for an end to other UK Government policies which make the situation worse, by seeking to contain people and to push them back to unsafe locations.