Over 3,000 asylum-seekers left on streets in Belgium: Report

Over 3,000 asylum-seekers left on streets in Belgium: Report

Report points to dramatic increase in psychotic disorders, post-traumatic stress, depression among asylum-seekers

By Selen Temier

BRUSSELS (AA) - More than 3,000 asylum-seekers in Belgium had been forced to survive in precarious conditions on the streets as of the end of April, a report said Thursday.

The report, which was jointly conducted by BELRefugees, Caritas Internationalis, WAX, Humanitarian HUB, Doctors of the World, Doctors Without Borders and Vluchtelingenwerk Vlaanderen, highlighted the "reception crisis" in the country.

The figures showed that 3,171 asylum-seekers who are still awaiting treatment by Fedasil, the agency responsible for running refugee centers, have been forced to survive in precarious conditions on the streets.

The report also said there is a growing number of psychotic disorders, post-traumatic stress and depression, as well as potentially epidemic diseases among these stranded people.

The number of asylum seekers provided with mental health services by the Belgian branch of Doctors Without Borders rose to 84% from 5% between March 2022 and March 2023.

There has been a longstanding reception crisis in the country due to the lack of shelters for asylum-seekers.

The Belgian government is accused of remaining silent over the ongoing crisis.

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