09:06, 09 July 2020
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Chios: Syrian refugee critical after 'self-immolation'

A Syrian refugee is in critical condition after what appeared

to be a self-immolation attempt on the Greek island of Chios, according to medical sources. The incident happened around 2pm local time (11:00 GMT) on Thursday inside the Vial detention centre. Videos posted on social media showed the 29-year-old man - who was holding what looked like a fuel container and a lighter - being engulfed by flames, just moments after a tussle with a police officer who had grabbed him from behind in an apparent bid to stop him from setting himself on fire. The refugee, who reportedly arrived on Chios last week, sustained burns to 85 percent of his body. He was initially admitted to the island's Skilitseion Hospital and was expected to be air lifted to the capital, Athens, for further treatment. "His condition is particularly serious, and that is why all procedures have been followed to transfer him to Athens with the first available means," Eleni Voutierou, the hospital's acting manager, told Al Jazeera. The police officer was also injured in the incident, suffering burns on seven percent of his hands and three percent of his face. He was also expected to be transported to an Athens hospital.