A large fire destroyed the "One Happy Family" refugee social center on the Greek island of Lesbos, according to the EFE news agency, adding that it may have been arson. The causes of the fire that started at the end of Saturday are still unknown, but there are indications that it was arson, the Spanish news agency said.
The social center, founded in 2017 by a Swiss non-governmental organization (NGO), was an important meeting point for refugees from the Moria camps – the largest refugee camp in Europe – and Kara Tepé.
There, refugees and migrants had varied spaces such as a classroom for children, medical assistance, a library or a cafeteria. A barber and an improvised movie theater are other spaces in the center that operated with the help of volunteers, but also with the participation of migrants and refugees themselves.
The firefighters needed hours to extinguish the flames in the building, located a few kilometers from the capital of Lesbos, Mytilene, next to the center of Kara Tepé and close to Moria, where more than 20 thousand people live.
Last week, it also burned down an old facility of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Skala Sikamineas, the beach where most boats from the Turkish coasts arrive.