When a group of Syrians crossed from Greece into Macedonia one day earlier this summer, several of them picked a few grapes in a vineyard just north of the border. Most spat out the fruit immediately: the grapes weren’t ripe. But Fattemah Abu al-Rouse kept chewing. “The grapes are sour,” Fattemah later explains. “And as a pregnant woman, I needed that to make me feel less nauseous.” More than 300,000 people have risked the sea journey from Turkey to Greece so far this year, and the majority have subsequently walked and bussed their way through Macedonia, Serbia and Hungary to the countries of northern Europe. Little exemplifies their desperation more than the fact that many of them are, like Fattemah, doing so while pregnant. It is impossible to calculate exactly how many refugees are expecting children. But at every border crossing along the route, pregnant women are a common sight. According to the UN refugee agency, women form 13% of those arriving in Europe this year. Doctors who treat them as they walk through the continent estimate that, in ball-park terms, more than a fifth of that total might be pregnant. “It’s really a lot,” says Nevena Radovanovic, a doctor… Read full this story
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Fattemah's choice: stay in a warzone or risk losing her baby on journey to Europe have 333 words, post on www.theguardian.com at September 23, 2015. This is cached page on CuBird. If you want remove this page, please contact us.