Since the new Mavrovouni (Kara Tepe) camp on Lesvos opened in September 2020, there have always been serious concerns about lead contamination in the former military area, in addition to all the other disastrous living conditions. Over 6,000 people live on land that has been proven to be contaminated with lead, putting pregnant women and children at play at particular risk. Together with many other MEPs, I have therefore supported an open letter to the EU Commission.
In January of this year, the government published "results" of an investigation, which, however, deliberately included only very incomplete tests. But even the lead levels measured there are alarmingly high. The Greek government is trying to justify this by setting unsuitable and dangerously high limits for these conditions.
We call on the European Commission to urge the Greek authorities to relocate all camp inmates immediately to less contaminated areas. Until then, all residents must be fully informed about the dangers of lead poisoning. In addition, blood tests must be provided free of charge, primarily for children under the age of two, who are particularly at risk. The health and safety of these people is at great risk. They must not be kept locked up in these conditions any longer, and certainly not for another winter.