Welcome to Europe V – Mental health

Rafaq (22) Syria,

I arrived here 5 months ago. When I first got here I was very happy, I thought, finally I can complete my life here in Europe in safety. Turkey was so bad to me, that’s why I came to Europe. I was in Turkey for one year and 4 months, because I lost all my money there. They insulted me many times, they said go back to your country what are you doing here, go and fight in your country.

Unfortunately my case was rejected. I told them about all my suffering in Syria, in Turkey, here in Greece. I don’t know, no body cares about me. Why did they give me a rejection? When they gave me my rejection I tried to kill myself with a knife. I put the knife on my neck and my friend from Morocco was screaming, my friend I am begging you, please don’t do it and he held me and the knife fell on the ground. The police came and they kicked me and they hit me and they took me to their station and they told me you are a refugee dog here. I told them, please I am begging you, I was angry when they gave me the rejection. They didn’t care and they sent me to prison where I spent 3 nights.

My first appeal was also rejected. I had the gasoline ready. I was crazy at that moment. I told them I will burn myself. They called the police. The police arrested me, put me to jail again and then to the hospital in Chios, from there to a mental hospital in Athens. I did a mistake in Athens, and that is why they sent me back to Chios.


Now, I am waiting for the result of my second appeal. If they sent me back to Turkey, I will kill myself. I cannot go back to Turkey and not back to Syria, if I go back to Syria I need to fight. I have to choose between the Syrian army of Bashar Al Assad or the free Syrian army or the Islamic front. I am Muslim, but I am not like them who kill people. In the real Islam we do not kill people.

I talked to my mother in Syria one week ago, I said I will come back. She was crying, please my son, I am begging you, please do not come back. But here they don’t understand. I am serious; I am ready to do it. If they give me my last rejection, I will kill myself. The gasoline is ready. They only gave me pills to make me relaxed.


The situation in the camp is very bad. I do not feel safe. I got attacked many times. There is no security in the camp. Yesterday for example, I went to my neighbour, a lady, she is living here with her cousins, also ladies. She divorced her husband. Someone called her, she did not know who, and he was threatening her and said I will hurt you. We went to the police and told her she was scared. Police said we can’t do anything.


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