Saturday, September 1, 2018

Suicidal Children at Refugee Camps

Murder by Sherman Geronimo-Tan

The BBC is reporting that young children are exhibiting suicidal behavior at refugee camps in Greece and, half a world away, Nauru.

The Micronesian island nation of Nauru has, for years, been housing asylum seekers interdicted on their way to Australia. As the BBC notes, many of the children on Nauru "have lived most of their life in detention, with no idea of what their future will be." At least 30 children there suffer from "traumatic withdrawal syndrome... a rare psychiatric condition where sufferers, as a response to severe trauma, effectively withdraw from life." Advocates say these children are in need of intense psychiatric care unavailable on the tiny island, and they assert Australia is not doing enough to aid these intensely vulnerable individuals.

Half the world away on the Greek island of Lesbos, the BBC describes violence and overcrowding so prevalent that some charities have left the island in protest. Children as young as 10 have been attempting suicide, an occurrence one official described as "something we're seeing constantly." As in Australia, doctors want to move these children to better facilities off-site, but have been unable to do so.

Hope, it seems, has left both camps.


Current Affairs | Permalink


Post a comment