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Calais refugees’ under-reported problems

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A new report says the refugees arriving at the New Jungle camp in Calais are suffering from various health problems.

A new report says the refugees arriving at the New Jungle camp, the name given to various encampments on the land around the tunnel in Calais, are suffering from various health problems.

The report by a team of British dentists visiting the camp added that people in the camp are suffering from rotting teeth, painful gums and infections causing them to avoid food.



In the report, the team specifically named Mohammed Khaliff a teenager from Syria. He told the team that he can’t eat food without first taking strong pain-relieving medication. Khaliff’s problems began after a police officer hit his mouth with a steel bar when he was a young boy. He said, since moving to Calais, his teeth have started to deteriorate by the scarcity of running water taps for tooth brushing.

According to experts, dental problems are just one of the most under-reported problems among the refugees in Calais.

“There is a huge need there. It is a problem that is under-reported and we find we struggle to get attention, dental issues tend to come lower down on the list of people’s needs, but it is something that does affect people in a big way,” says Jacqueline James, a member of the team.

Some 6,000 people are living in the camp. The situation in Calais is part of a wider refugee crisis across Europe. Officials in the European countries reportedly remain divided over how to deal with refugees, most of whom are fleeing conflict-hit zones in the Middle East and Africa.