Human Side Of Refugee Crisis In Moving Photos - Hope 103.2

Human Side Of Refugee Crisis In Moving Photos

The human side of the Middle Eastern refugee crisis has been powerfully captured in a series of images, by a photographer on a ferry boat to Greece.

By Clare BruceTuesday 20 Oct 2015NewsReading Time: 4 minutes

The human side of the Middle Eastern refugee crisis has been powerfully captured by a photographer on a ferry boat to Greece.

Matthieu Paley, a photographer based in Istanbul, boarded a ferry on Chios Island in Turkey last month, to take his family on a holiday to the Greek Islands.

He was surprised to find many passengers fast asleep, and it didn’t take him long to discover that they were refugees—most Afghans, Iraqis and Syrians, journeying from Lesbos Island to Athens.

Many had made dangerous, illegal night-crossings from Turkey into Greece and stayed in camps on Lesbos Island, before paying their fares and boarding the enormous ferry to Athens.

   

During the ferry ride Matthieu talked to the refugees and photographed them in heart-warming, everyday human scenarios: sleeping, hugging, charging phones, making calls.

Hope 103.2 is proudly supported by

He posted a series of the images on Instagram with moving captions.

“The strength of a family can help overcome big challenges,” one photo says. “A father and daughter embrace – refugees on a ferryboat from Lesbos island to Athens. In the background, a newly wed couple and their 1-month old baby, born on the road while crossing Turkey.”

Another image highlights the need for refugees to keep in touch with family.   “During their journey west to Europe, charging mobile phones is a priority for many refugees,” he writes. “The phone is their lifeline: “We can keep in touch, let our family and friends know we are safe. Sometimes we call, sometimes we put pictures up on social media… It gives them hope!” an Afghan refugee explains.”

A picture of two girls is captioned: “These two sisters were fast asleep, on a dining table. They were exhausted from the prior days spent in makeshift camps on Lesbos Island after a dangerous night-crossing from Turkey to Greece.”

One photo depicts a refugee’s hand against the glass of the ferry window, against the wide blue ocean outside. “Many of the refugees fear the ocean, having never had the chance to learn how to swim,” says the caption.

On his Facebook page, a German commented that many refugees are using Google Maps and WhatsApp on their smartphones to find each other once they have arrived in Europe.