From file: Kara Tepe transit site, Lesbos, Greece in 2016 | Credit: Better Shelter
From file: Kara Tepe transit site, Lesbos, Greece in 2016 | Credit: Better Shelter

A three-year-old Afghan girl is presumed to have been sexually assaulted in the Kara Tepe tent camp for migrants on the Greek island of Lesbos. Doctors who examined the child reportedly said that her injuries may have been the result of rape.

Authorities on the Greek Aegean island of Lesbos are investigating the suspected rape of a three-year-old Afghan girl in the Kara Tepe migrant camp, a migration ministry source told news agency AFP on Tuesday (December 15).

The investigation was opened after the girl was found semi-conscious and bleeding in a lavatory in the camp late on Monday, the source said.

Greek state broadcaster ERT reported Tuesday morning that doctors who examined the child at the camp's medical center confirmed the incident, saying that the toddler's injuries may have been the result of rape.

According to Greek publication Ekathimerini, the girl was then transferred to a hospital in Mytilene, the capital of Lesbos. There, she will be examined again by a forensic doctor to determine "the exact cause of her injuries."

Not an isolated case

UN agencies, human rights NGOs and migrant aid organizations like Doctors Without Borders (MSF) have repeatedly condemned the conditions at the sprawling tent cities of the former Moria camp and Kara Tepe, which many refer to as Moria 2.0.

A study conducted by MSF and published this September found that in the six months between September 2017 and January 2018, 215 victims of sexual violence came to the MSF clinic on Lesbos to get help. According to the study, 60 -- or three in ten -- were male. Nearly all (94%) incidents reported were rape, but only one in 20 cases occurred on Lesbos.

"The need for mental health care exceeded the capacity of available mental care services," the authors of the study warned.

'Moria 2.0'

The Kara Tepe tent camp was hastily erected in September after a fire devastated the Moria camp, displacing some 12,300 people who were staying in and around Europe's then-largest migrant camp.

While many of the refugees and asylum seekers were transferred to the Greek mainland and some to other EU countries like Germany, thousands remained on Lesbos and were moved to nearby Kara Tepe. The site is currently home to more than 7,300 people.

On Sunday, Greece's government came under heavy criticism from all sides after the tent camp on Lesbos was flooded for the third time following two days of heavy rainfall across the country.

Earlier this month, Greece announced that 7,200 migrants stuck in temporary accommodation since the Moria blaze will be moved to a "new, up-to-standard reception center" on Lesbos by September 2021. The European Commission said it will support the Greek government with the building project.

With AFP


More articles