Welcome to Europe IV – The crossing

E (17) from Eritrea. (He did the journey by himself).



When we got to the Turkish coast the smugglers took us to a forest close to the beach where we stayed two days without food and only water. They put air in a balloon (boat), they pushed us all inside, about 54 migrants, most of them Syrians, but also some Africans. The smugglers kept hitting the African refugees. During the journey the Turkish police arrived and they forced the boat to stop. They put a knife into the balloon (boat). There were children on the boat, there was an older man and they all sank to the sea. Some of the children had lifesavers and some of the people who had lifesavers tried to take out the children from underneath the sea.

The Turkish police took us to the prison. We faced big problem in the prison. The first thing that they did was to ask our name and our religion. If you are Muslim the let you go, if you are not Muslim they put you in prison for two months. They isolated us, took our bibles and crosses and a lot of things happened that I cannot talk about, what happened to us is beyond our imagination, that should not happen to human beings.

When we tried the second time, the smugglers also took us to the same forest where we stayed without food for three days. This time the Turkish police did not catch us. On the second journey we were 50 people. When we came to Greece the Greek police caught us, and safely we reached Greece.

Here in the camp I face a lot of problems. For example in my camp where I stay with other children I am the only Christian. They only ask me where are you from and what is your religion, why are you not praying like a Muslim. Also inside the refuge, I face a lot of problems. I have no friends; I am the only black in that place. Most of them are Syrians and Iraqis.


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