Border closures lead to refugees attempting suicide
Horrific pictures have emerged showing two desperate migrants trying to hang themselves in the middle of Athens’ Victoria Square, Greece, amid growing frustrations over border closures.
Tens of thousands of refugees have been left stranded in the country.
After the bid to commit suicide in front of shocked onlookers, the men – who are believed to be of Pakistani origin – fell unconscious.
Other refugees and volunteers almost immediately stopped them and called an ambulance.
Both men, who are said to be aged 25, were rushed to hospital, where they were later described as being in a ‘good’ condition.
Officials in Greece estimate there are currently 20,000 migrants stranded in the country after neighbouring Macedonia closed its border.
Macedonia had been the main point of exit for the thousands of predominantly Syrians, Iraqis and Afghans hoping to travel to Britain, Germany and Scandinavia.
Macedonia has agreed to allow only 200 migrants to pass through its country a day in order to ensure its transport systems and infrastructure aren’t overwhelmed.
It is predicted that more than a million new arrivals are to be expected to arrive in Greece this year alone. Greece is said to have a massive refugee backlog, leaving the country overwhelmed and asylum seekers desperate.
Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras warned that his country will block future EU agreements if other member states refused to share the burden of refugees.
He said: “[Greece] will not accept turning the country into a permanent warehouse of souls with Europe continuing to function as if nothing is happening.”
Around a hundred refugees have set up a camp at Athens’ Victoria Square in protest of their conditions, whilst other groups of frustrated migrants, including families with children, walked along the country’s main motorway in the hope of reaching Macedonia after authorities stopped their buses in order to ease the crowds at the blocked border.