A HUMANITARIAN NO-MAN’S-LAND
The first thing one notices is the smell. A pungent smell of burned plastic and garbage fills one’s nostrils at a distance. Here, behind the central station in Belgrade, the capital of Serbia, 1 200 refugees are stuck in what can most easily be described as a humanitarian no-man’s-land. In March 2016 the so-called Balkan route was effectively closed off using fences, barbed wire and patrolling policemen. Since then Serbia has seen a significant increase in the number of refugees and migrants. Waqar Ahmad is 20 years old and has been a refugee for months. Every third day he tries to wash himself as well as he can at the only place where there is water in the camp. A thin, black, plastic hose in a dirty, littered field. Every day is a struggle – against the cold, against the hunger and against the quickly spreading lice.