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''I woke up and my coat was covered by a small layer of ice'': refugees on the border between Serbia and Hungary

January 24 2017 - TOMPA, HUNGARY

HungaryRefugees

Delivering aid at the refugee camp of Tompa

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The situation of the refugees camped between Tompa e Röszke, across the border that divides Serbia and Hungary is getting more and more difficult. This is due to the weather conditions as the temperatures in the last few days have reached -10 degrees celsius. Right now there are about 40 people who live in the open, amongst them there are also children. The Community of Sant'Egidio in Hungary these days is distributing to the refugees essential food which they desperately need.

The refugee camp of Tompa is divided in two: on one side there are Syrians and Iraqi. They are waiting for the Hungarian authorities to grant them to cross the European border. On the other side, there are Moroccans and Algerians: they are also waiting even though the Hungarian authorities refused to grant them access in Hungary.

Amongst them there is Ahmed, a young algerian man of about 20 years of age. He left Algeria 3 years ago, and has lived in the refugee camps in Greece and Turkey, then he travelled through Serbia and Macedonia and finally in Albania where he lost everything he had. His dream is to be able to get to Germany. He is very thankful of the blanked he received and told us that in the morning when he woke up, his coat was covered by a small layer of ice. He said: "One day maybe we will see each other again in another part of the world. And I will recognise you. And we will laugh about all this".

During these days the border between Serbia and Hungary seems a North Pole base: all is white, cold. Only snow and ice across, that cover the tents with which the refugees are camped. A people that dreams a different life, a house and a job, who is thankful for this visit that for one day has lifted up their suffering.