Between January and July this year, 18,600 refugees arrived on the Greek island Kos by boat from Turkey. The majority are fleeing war and violence in Syria, but many also come from Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran and Pakistan.
There is no adequate system to receive these people on Kos, which has resulted in chaotic scenes where many new arrivals are forced to sleep in public places or in the overcrowded, abandoned Captain Elias hotel, which lacks basic facilities. The Greek state does not provide adequate shelter, hygiene facilities, basic healthcare, protection or food. A cruise ship is currently providing registration, accommodation and transportation to Athens, but only for Syrians, and only for a temporary period of time.
MSF teams are providing medical care, water and sanitation support, shelter, non-food items and psychological support to refugees on the island. MSF urges the Greek state, with the support of the EU, to ensure the provision of an adequate transit reception system for all people arriving to Kos.