Refugees gather for a hunger strike at Brandenburger Tor. Earlier in the year they had walked 400 miles from Würzburg to Berlin with three demands; the abolition of the Residenzphflicht law that forbids free movement within the country, the closing of the network of refugee camps whilst allowing them to work, and finally, stop the deportation of asylum seekers, 2012.
Abdalkhalig (left) claimed he’d killed over 200 of Gaddafi's soldiers. He was one of 2,500 Libyans who came to Germany for medical treatment, paid for by accounts which Gaddafi kept in Germany. After the war the money was presented to the Libyan transitional government for humanitarian aid. Jadalla (right) came to Germany with his father for medical treatment. Jadalla's mother died in a rocket attack which also left 65% of his body burnt, 2012.
Suhil and Mohamed sometimes play xbox until dawn to avoid sleep. They are two of the rebels who came to Germany for medical treatment, paid for by accounts which Gaddafi kept in Germany. After the accounts ran dry, the Libyan embassy took over the costs of their treatment and living. Rent and medical treatment is covered, and they receive 1,050€ each month to spend as they wish, 2012.
A group of young Muslim men pray together on the streets of Neukölln. A mark of solidarity and protest towards the "Pro Deutschland" group and their "anti-Islamisation of Europe" demonstration that took place at several location in Berlin that day, 2012.
The kitchens of the makeshift refugee camp at Oranienplatz. The tents were put up over wooden crates that were laid down on the ground first. Rats began nesting under the wooden crates and feasting on the garbage, 2013.
The abandoned Gerhart-Hauptmann-Schule at Ohlauer Strasse, was squatted by hundreds of refugees for more than 18 months. It was the focus for much of the unrest surrounding refugees in the area, including one fatal stabbing. As winter set in residents of Kreuzberg donated generously, 2013.
A group of young men play music together in their room at Gerhart-Hauptmann-Schule. Conditions were often squalid, with too many people sharing the same room, 2013.
An NPD demonstration in Hellersdorf takes defensive action after it came under attack from eggs and flying plastic gloves filled with urine. Germany's far right party was demonstrating against the asylum seekers planned settlement in Hellersdorf, Berlin. Instead, suggesting they be placed in ghettos "far out" from the city, 2013
Refugees fight amongst each other at Oranienplatz. Police and locals look on as they tear down their own tents after Dilek Kolat, integration minister of Berlin, offered them a deal. In the afternoon the machinery came in and finished the job by raising the remaining structures to the ground, 2014.
A before (2013) and after (2014) view of separate tents that used to house refugees at Oranienplatz, until they were destroyed by those refugees looking to make a deal with Berlin’s integration minister, Dilek Kolat, 2014.
More unrest at Oranienplatz as one refugee threatens to set himself on fire. Mohammed (not pictured) from Niger shouted "just take out your guns and shoot all of us! We have survived the NATO bombing in Libya! We survived the sea! But what a fucking stupid life, for three years on the streets of Europe, no job, no nothing." 2014.
Days later and Mohammed is now on the roof of a hostel at Gürtelstraße along with 8 other refugees, starving themselves and threatening to jump. Here, protestors gather in solidarity below, but are kept at a safe distance by police, 2014.
NPD demonstrators gather on the streets of Marzahn to protest against plans to house refugees in the area, 2014.
Amir, Ingo and Napuli, an activist and two refugees, climb a tree and start a hunger strike at Oranienplatz. They’re protesting the demolition of the camp and the restricted rights of refugees, 2014.
Refugees rush to people arriving to donate food, water and clothing at the State Office of Health and Welfare (LaGeSo). In the height of summer, thousands arrived daily and quickly overwhelmed the underprepared infrastructure leaving many waiting up to a month just to register, 2015.
Refugees and migrants waiting for registration at LaGeSo open up about the importance of their smartphones, and their many uses to those crossing continents by foot.
Left image: "We used balloons and tape to protect our phones from the water.”
Right image: "This is a photograph of my wife's mother. She was killed by IS in Libya. I've had this phone for 10 years. I only use it for important things, really.” 2015.
Ali (23) from Tartus
“We have to accept whatever we get from people and governments. We are refugees. I only arrived a month ago, but I think I will have a better future here. I am a sailor and I hope to go to the academy in Hamburg. My goal is to be captain of a ship.” 2015
The disorganisation and desperate conditions at LaGeSo caused huge controversy across Germany. The registration office for hundreds of thousands of refugees that should have been setting a shining example, ended up shrouding the city in shame with squalid conditions and waiting times of up for 30 days in the sweltering summer heat or deep winter freeze. A rare glimpse at one of the empty waiting tents late at night, 2015.
The Alowayid family wait on the pavement outside the City 54 Hotel & Hostel with their possessions packed up. They were kicked out for an apparent lack of cleanliness. With the massive influx of refugees in 2015 many hostels and hotels saw full occupancy and long term stays for refugees, all paid for by the government, as a lucrative opportunity. This particular hostel has capacity for 208 people, however it was reported that up to 870 people were living there, and at €20.48 a day per person it wasbringing in an annual income of 5.16 million Euros, 2016.
Ahmed, 31 from Al-Hasakah, Syria
"I've been here for about six months with my 12-year-old cousin. I was doing a Masters in Agricultural Economics in Syria when I left. We lived in a land of militias, where there was no state whatsoever. My cousin has been exposed to a lot of violence and we were worried about how traumatised he would get. As a child, it's easier for him to cope with the limited living space, but he misses his parents and the emotional link to the place where he lives. I will start my course at the Technological University in Berlin soon, and I'm worried about where I should study when it starts. I'm going to need my space and privacy. I'm not sure know how I will cope.” 2016.