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Society

Greek Orphanage Probed for Abuse Withheld Data on Children

ATHENS – An unnamed orphanage in Greece’s capital that is being investigated over allegations that five boys from 7-11 were sexually abused had refused to provide information on how many children were there but wasn’t penalized.

Deputy Minister for Social Affairs Domna Michailidou told Kathimerini that, “When we launched the (online) platform for fostering and adoption, we asked all (child care) facilities in the country to register the children they hosted, in order for them to join the system.”

She added that, “The specific facility refused to do so until the last moment. I had to call them on the phone and press them. They were the last in Greece to follow the instructions.”  There was no explanation why it hasn’t been named.

Michailidou also said that there is also a pending complaint against the orphanage from 2017 alleging illegal adoptions, which “has not yet been fully investigated,” but didn’t explain how that worked and who was taking the children.

The investigation over sexual abuse came after a written complaint from a former employer and two members of the governing board claiming the boys were being forced by female staff members to perform sexual and violent acts on each other.

The identities of the staff members alleged to have forced the sexual acts hasn’t been revealed under Greek privacy laws but Michailidou said she was upset over the board’s delay in suspending them.

The five boys have been transferred to the children’s Paidon Hospital in Athens where they are being evaluated but no report on if any prosecutions will come out of the investigation. 

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