Since the beginning of large scale refugee arrivals in 2015 and the closure of the Balkan route in 2016, the Greek authorities have established in total 32 refugee camps in mainland Greece. Until March 2020, the vast majority of these camps lacked a legal basis. Poor conditions including sleeping in tents exposed to the weather elements, severe lack of safety and violence, remoteness of location and limited access to health care are among the deficiencies in these camps.
Due to the increase in persons arriving via North-Eastern Greece over the past year, a substantial number of asylum seekers have not officially undergone a referral from the authorities for the purpose of reception and remain as unofficial residents of mainland camps such as Malakasa under wholly substandard conditions.
RSA regularly documents conditions in mainland camps and supports cases of vulnerable individuals living there.