November 21

MONTHLY REVIEW: NOVEMBER 2021

This monthly press review covers Eurafrican migration control, migration and displacement in African countries and news on the European border regime. In case there is a news item, report, or campaign you would like to flag for in next month’s review please write us to: migr-contr@ffm-online.org or on Twitter @MigControl

NEW ON MIGRATION-CONTROL.INFO

Document 07.11.21: Adaptation of the EU legal framework to new realities: Letter by 12 Ministers of Interior to Commissioner of Home Affairs, 7 October 2021:

Recent developments at the external borders of the European Union (EU) indicate that the EU needs to adapt the existing legal framework to the new realities, enabling us to adequately address attempts of instrumentalization of illegal migration for political purposes and other hybrid threats. Our Union has to be prepared for possible similar challenges in the future

Blog Außengrenze im Nordwesten von Thomas Müller vom Blog JungleOfCalais: Im Blogeintrag analysiert Thomas Müller aktuelle Tendenzen der britischen Grenzpolitik mit ihrer anhaltenden Externalisierung der Migrationskontrolle auf das europäische Festland in Frankreich und Belgien. Trotz fortschreitender Überwachung, nimmt die Dynamik der Channel crossings kontinuierlich zu. Das Grenzregime wird weiterhin unterlaufen, allerdings unter riskanter werdenden Bedingungen. In Calais und Umgebung erhöhen massive Übergriffe auf Subsistenzmittel den Druck auf Exilierte und zivilgesellschaftliche Organisationen. Gleichzeitig ist eine seit der Räumung des Jungle 2016 nicht mehr gekannte Protestdynamik entstanden: eine mobile Gedenkstätte für Grenztote wurde gestaltet, Demos werden organisiert, Aktivist:innen sind im Hungerstreik.

Blog Emerging developments from the EU’s Draft Action Plan for Nigeria by Kwaku Arhin-Sam: In his blog entry, Kwaku Arhin-Sam comments on the leaked EU Commission Draft Action Plan on migration cooperation with Nigeria. Strengthening cooperation on deportations remains a key interest for the EU. Other new key developments include: a proposal to include the participation of EU Member States in local-level political dialogue, a greater role of a diverse set of actors incl. civil society organizations (CSOs) and private actors through Team Europe Initiatives (TEI), a greater role for European agencies such as Frontex, EASO, and Europol in Nigeria and more conditionality in funding through MFF21/22.

Blog Dossier: Frontex Goes Africa: The aim is to collect information about Frontex’ engagement on African soil. We curate this collection of texts and links in reference to the Abolish Frontex campaign. Please feel free to share valuable information.

Blog Neues Auffanglager in Griechenland und die “Begrenzung primärer Ströme” von Wasil Schauseil: Im Blogeintrag schreibt Wasil Schauseil über das neue „geschlossen kontrollierte“ Lager auf Samos, das Pilotprojekt für vier weitere Lager auf den ägäischen Hotspot-Inseln ist.

Blog New EU Documents on Frontex Return Operations, and Climate Migration: We published Frontex’s Reports on Return Operations for the first half of 2021, the Fundamental Rights Officer’s Observations to Return Operations for the same time, and a discussion paper by the Council of the European Union about “Climate change and migration”. In addition, we wrote a short note on Frontex’s increasing involvement in deportations.

Wiki Israel by Judith Poppe: In the report, Judith Poppe looks at the Israeli migration and border regime through the biography of Mahari, an Eritrean, and describes the situation of refugees and their struggles for recognition in Israel.

Wiki EU von Christian Jakob: Der Beitrag stellt die Europäische Union mitsamt ihrer Regierung, dem politischen System und ihrer Ökonomie vor. Es werden bestehende Migrationsbewegungen sowie derzeitige EU-Projekte, mitsamt involvierten Agenturen, Systeme, und der fortschreitend externalisierten Migrationskontrolle dargelegt. Darüber hinaus werden für die EU maßgebliche NGOs aufgelistet und in ihrer Rolle kontextualisiert. Der letzte Teil des Beitrags nennt und analysiert die wirtschaftlichen Interessen und Widerstandsbewegungen, gefolgt von aktuellen Migrationsstatistiken.

Wiki Uganda [aktualisiert] von Simone Schlindwein: In ihrem überarbeiteten Wiki Eintrag geht Simone Schlindwein auf die politischen und sozialen Veränderungen in Uganda ein und diskutiert dessen Einfluss in Bezug auf die Stabilität in der Ostafrikanischen Region. Weitergehend beschreibt der Beitrag die aktuellen Migrationsbewegungen, die Uganda als Zielort haben und deren Pandemie bedingten Veränderungen. Anschließend wird die Einstufung Ugandas als sicheres Herkunftsland seitens der EU, und im Zuge dessen die expandierende Entwicklungshilfe zur Biometrisierung, thematisiert.

Special: RefugeesInLibya

Due to the ongoing struggle and resistance of people in Libya, our team has decided to highlight recent developments of the protests in Tripoli and all of Libya in a special section of the monthly review. Our aim is to highlight the ongoing resistance and to support their demand to respect human rights, the right to stay as well as the right to move.

Twitter // Website

TNH 02.11.21: How migrants and asylum seekers in Libya lost faith in foreign aid: “I have spent the past month organizing and running an independent initiative to provide aid and assistance to these people. When I first visited the makeshift encampment in the middle of October with a few other volunteers – including a doctor and a therapist – we saw hundreds of people who needed urgent care.”

Libya 12.11.21: Ilfattoquotidiano: Libia, i trafficanti diffondono sui social le foto dei migranti nei centri di detenzione: ‘Perché le famiglie le vedano e paghino i riscatti’ (Libya, traffickers spread photos of migrants in detention centres on social networks: ‚So that families can see them and pay ransoms‘.): Dozens of young men’s faces holding an identification number on their chests have been posted on various Facebook groups of Central Africans abroad. This is the latest technique used by human traffickers to profit from the lives of people imprisoned in the Libyan hell. It is also the only way for these boys to save themselves,“ a source told the newspaper. „If they don’t bring money, they are killed.”

Libya/Mediterranean 18.11.21: Guardian: ‘Horrific’: 10 people suffocate in overcrowded migrant boat off Libya: On 16 November Doctors without Borders (MSF) reportedly rescued 99 survivors from a wooden boat in distress in the Mediterranean Sea, close to the Libyan coast. After having spent 13 hours on the vessel “trying to reach Europe as authorities accused of ignoring distress call”, 99 people could be rescued? while 10 people had died before MSF arrived.

Libya 26.11.21: Al Jazeera: ‘Point of no return’: Refugees in Libya long for safety: The first evacuation flight, since the lifting of the Libyan government’s ban on evacuations, brought 93 people to safety in Rome on 25 November. Meanwhile, the situation in Tripoli remains tense. The UNHCR describes the situation as dramatic and urges “the international community to offer more legal pathways to help people safely leave Libya.” According to UNHCR, at least 1000 people are still waiting to be evacuated after having been held in Libyan detention centers.

Libya November 2021: ECCHR et al: NO WAY OUT: Migrants and Refugees Trapped in Libya Face Crimes Against Humanity:For over a decade, the situation of migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers in Libya has deteriorated to such levels that it has shocked the global conscience. As the country descended into conflict and chaos following the 2011 uprising, migrants and refugees experienced some of the worst atrocities at the hands of state and non-state actors alike. This report argues, firstly, that these atrocities may amount to crimes against humanity and, as such, should be investigated and prosecuted by the International Criminal Court (ICC). Secondly, it questions the role of the European Union (EU) and its member states in facilitating these crimes.”

Special: People on the move in Belarus / Poland

Due to the ongoing struggle of people on the move in Belarus, the Migration Control team has decided to highlight recent developments in a special section of the monthly review.

Protests

Overview of Protests on this site: https://www.unteilbar.org/hilfe-fuer-die-menschen-an-der-polnisch-belarussischen-grenze/ and on https://seebruecke.org/aktuelles/kampagnen/gruenes-licht-fuer-aufnahme

For donations also see https://en.ocalenie.org.pl/ and https://wir-packens-an.info/spenden/

Petition

Petition to Austrian Government: End the deaths on the Polish-Belarusian border! Humanitarian corridor now!: We demand humane treatment of refugees between Poland and Belarus. Moreover, international law must be respected and people must not be denied the right to apply for asylum and the right to a fair asylum procedure in the EU.”

Reports: 29.10.21: Grażyna Baranowska: The Deadly Woods. Legalizing pushbacks at the Polish-Belarusian border: “The pushbacks at the Polish-Belarusian border consist of forcing people to walk or driving them by car to the border and forcing them to cross it. As such, they reflect what is happening at other EU borders, in particular at the Balkan route.”

See also 09.11.21: Amnesty: Menschenrechtsverletzungen an der Grenze zu Belarus sofort stoppen (Stop Human Right Violations at the Belarus Border); 12.11.21: Alarmphone: Stop the war on migration along the EU-Belarus border! Freedom of movement for all!; 12.11.21: Civil Fleet Support: Mauerfall.Jetzt; 26.10.21: Group Granica: Todesgrenze. Pushbacks an der polnisch-weißrussischen Grenze: The activists of the „No Borders Team“ present on-site report on the shocking events at the Polish-Belarusian border for Grassroots Revolution.

Articles

General Info: 21.10.21: DW: The route from Iraq to Belarus: How are migrants getting to Europe?: “In October, there were around 11,300 attempts to illegally enter Polish territory from Belarus. And up to that point, at least 23,000 such attempts have been registered this year. From there, many make their way to the German border. Three German states border Poland: Brandenburg, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and Saxony. Border police say there have been around 6,000 illegal crossings so far this year.”

See also 12.11.21: TAZ: Flucht über Belarus in Richtung EU (Flight via Belarus towards the EU)

10.11.21: SZ: EU erwägt, Mauerbau zu bezahlen (EU considers paying for wall construction): Council President Michel fully sides with Poland in the Belarus crisis and brings up EU funding for a „physical border infrastructure“. Michel travelled to Poland on 10 November to show his solidarity with Polish Prime Minister Morawiecki to ensure the full support of the EU. According to Michel it would be possible to finance a wall at the Polish/ Belarusian border through EU funding. EU President of the Commission Van der Leyen had before negated such demand.

See also 08.11.21: Reuters: Lithuania starts building first European wall to ward off migrants from Belarus; 11.11.21: Verfassungsblog: (Il-)Legal Gymnastics by Poland and Hungary in EU Border Procedures; 12.11.21: Pro Asyl: An der polnischen Grenze: »Eine Politik, die Menschen einfach sterben lässt« (On the Polish border: „A policy that simply lets people die“); 12.11.21: Politico: 10 British troops deployed to support Poland on Belarus border

19.11.21: Guardian: Belarus says camps on Polish border have been cleared of people: Amid growing diplomatic tensions and following the death of a one year old Syrian child Belarus has violently evicted the makeshift camp near the Polish city of Kuźnic. Belarus had already moved more than 1,000 migrants to the warehouse on Wednesday, where they were given food. One day prior to the eviction the spokesperson of Belarus’ President Lukashenko said “that the first repatriation flight had departed Belarus on Thursday with 431 Iraqi immigrants on board. The remaining people ‘have categorically refused to leave but we will work on that,’ they added. Reports said the flight had landed on Thursday evening.’

See also 15.11.21 taz: An die Grenze gedrängt (Driven to the Border) 17.11.21: NYT: Risk for Leader of Belarus: Migrants He Lured May Want to Stay

22.11.21: Tagesspiegel: Geflüchtete berichten nach Rückkehr aus Belarus von Folter (Refugees report torture after returning from Belarus): “Migrants stranded at Poland’s external EU border and returning home to Iraq from Belarus report terrible mistreatment. The people were beaten and tortured by Polish and Belarusian police officers, several of those affected from the Kurdish autonomous regions in Iraq told the German Press Agency on Saturday.”

See also 13.11.21: Associated Press: Polish police find body of young Syrian near Belarus border,18.11.21: TNH: How politics caused a humanitarian crisis on the EU’s eastern border; 20.11.21: taz: Europas neue Todeszone (Europe’s new death zone); 22.11.21: Al Jazeera: The devastating ways women suffer at the Poland-Belarus border

22.11.21: medico: Nicht aufzuhalten (They can’t be stopped): In the middle of the forest, but outside the restricted zone – i.e. the area along the border for which Poland has declared a state of emergency – we visit a base camp that young people from Warsaw have set up. The activists are trying to provide medical treatment for people who are endure at the belrusian/polish border.

See also: 17.11.21: NYT: Beyond the Freezing Forest, a Green Light at the Window for Migrants;

23.11.21: DW: EU-Belarus: Die EU setzt auf Härte (The EU relies on toughness): The EU Commission wants to punish the airline Belavia as well as travel companies that bring migrants and refugees to Belarus. The debate in the European Parliament also defines the situation as an „attack“ against the EU. While Von der Leyen has announced that medical staff could access one of the camps set up along the border to assist the people in the camps, a broad humanitarian solution to offer the people at the border strips a safe long term exit option is still missing.

See also: 15.11.21: Al Jazeera: EU agrees new sanctions on Belarus over border crisis; 01.12.21: European Commission: Commission proposes temporary legal and practical measures to address the emergency situation at the EU’s external border with Belarus

EAST AFRICA

Ethiopia 26.11.21: Guardian: The warning signs are there for genocide in Ethiopia – the world must act to prevent it: Amid ongoing violence and conflict in Ethiopia, the authors of this OP-ed warn that signs for genocide at the hand of the l coalition of the Ethiopian Government, the Amhara government, the state of Eritrea,, may be reaching the dimensions of a genocide. .

See also 24.11.21: Telepolis: Äthiopien: Staatsterror mit Drohnen und rassistischer Verfolgung (Ethiopia: State terror with drones and racial persecution); 25.11.21: WOZ: So tun, als sei alles wie immer (Every Day Life in Addis)

Sudan 13.11.21: The Guardian: Sudan security forces kill at least 5 as protesters defy shutdown: “Sudanese security forces killed at least five people on Saturday [13/10/21] and injured dozens more when they used teargas and live bullets to break up a protest in Khartoum against a military takeover of the government.”

Sudan 23.11.21: Al Jazeera: Sudanese ministers resign in protest against deal with military: Twelve cabinet ministers have submitted their resignation to newly reinstated Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok in protest against a political deal between the prime minister and the country’s ruling military council. On Sunday [21 November], Hamdok was reinstated after signing a political agreement with the head of the military council, General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, to end a weeks-long crisis that threatened to undermine the country’s political transition.

See also Al Jazeera 06.11.21: Sudan activists announce strikes, reject power-sharing with army; 21.11.21: Dabanga: 11 Sudan Ministers resign as ‘Hamdok agreement legitimises military coup regime’; 21.11.21: Dabanga: Sudan’s PM Hamdok reinstated but opposition reject deal

Uganda 30.11.21: taz: Uganda übt Vergeltung (Uganda retaliates): After the suicide attacks of members of the ADF (Allied Democratic Forces) in Kampala which led to the death of four civilians, the Ugandan and Congolese military has started to bomb camps of the ADF. The ADF is said to be an ally of the ISCAP (Islamic State in the Central African Province). The ADF camp that was attacked is located in Congo, due to the conflict between the Congolese and Ugandan governments the invention has sparked criticism in Congo.

See also 23.11.21: taz: Dschihad im Herzen Afrikas (Djihad in the Heart of Africa); Al Jazeera 30.11.21: Uganda launches air and artillery raids against ADF in DRC

NORTH AFRICA

Morocco/Algeria 10.11.21: France24: Morocco keen to ‘turn page‘ on Algeria tensions while insisting W. Sahara status ‘not negotiable: “Morocco is determined to „turn the page definitively“ on the Western Sahara conflict but without giving up its „legitimate rights“ over the disputed territory, Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita said Tuesday. Tensions have flared over the past few months between Morocco and its regional rival Algeria over the former Spanish colony which Rabat sees as its own sovereign territory. “

See also North Africa Journal 10.11.21: Algeria-Morocco conflict: Two scenarios on the likelihood of an armed confrontation

Tunisia 04.11.21: North Africa Journal: North Africa’s skilled workers looking to leave their countries in droves: In Tunisia, the number of experts applying for jobs abroad rose 36% year over year in August 2021, as evidence of more Tunisians looking to leave their country. Worsening social, economic and political climates are forcing North Africans to look for safe havens abroad.”

Tunisia 12.11.21: North Africa Journal: Unrest in Agareb over a landfill: “Clashes flared again on Thursday between security forces and residents of a Tunisian town protesting against the reopening of a landfill site they say is a public health hazard. Demonstrations in Agareb earlier in the week, sparked by authorities reversing a decision to close the dump, escalated after the death on Monday night of a protester from what relatives said was tear gas inhalation.”

Tunisia 26.11.21: Reuters: Tunisia navy rescues 487 migrants from overloaded boat: On November 26 a boat in distress with 487 people on board was rescued by the Turnisian navy, the people on the boat were taken to the port of El Kitf in Ben Guerdane.

WEST AFRICA

Burkina Faso 12.11.2021: Ouest France: 3 000 réfugiés maliens chassés de leur camp, attaqué par des groupes armés (3 000 Malian refugees chased out of their camps and attacked by arms armed groups): According to the UNHCR, about 13 000 Malian refugees were forced to flee the refugee camp of Goudoubo for the second time in two years following several attacks by armed groups.

Burkina Faso 26.11.21: Reuters: French military convoy leaving Burkina Faso after protestor blockage: “A French military convoy blocked in Burkina Faso was crossing into Niger on Friday, France’s army said, a week after protesters opposed to the former colonial ruler’s military presence halted its passage. Hundreds of demonstrators in the city of Kaya last week surrounded the logistics trucks and armoured vehicles as they traversed Burkina Faso on their way to Niger and then Mali.”

See also 20.11.21: AP: 3 protesters wounded by French soldiers in Burkina Faso;

23.11.21: RFI: Burkina Faso: le convoi militaire français suspendu aux négociations.

22.11.21: Blogpost by Rahame Idrissa: Du sentiment anti-français au Sahel

Chad 03.11.21: Le Monde: Au Tchad, les principaux groupes rebelles « disposés » à participer au dialogue national (Chad’s main rebel groups ‚willing‘ to participate in national dialogue): Mahamat Idriss Déby, who succeeded his slain father in April, is increasing signs of openness in preparation for presidential and legislative elections.

Chad 18.11.2021: Le Sahel: A Bruxelles, Pahimi Padacke Albert se réjouit des financements de l’Union Européenne (In Brussels, Pahimi Padacke Albert welcomes funding from the EU): The transition government’s Prime Minister Pahimi Padacké Albert together with five other members of the government was on a high level visit in Brussels from November 16 to 17. During his stay he met high level representatives of the EU and to demand their support for the ongoing transition.

Chad 18.11.21: RFI: Tchad: une délégation conduite par Albert Pahimi Padacké à Bruxelles en quête d’un soutien de l’UE (Chad: Delegation led by Albert Pahimi Padacké in Brussels seeking EU support): One hundred million euros have been earmarked by the EU for the eighteen months of the Chadian transition. The question now is whether the development aid budget for Chad could be urgently reallocated to the more flexible so-called rapid reaction component under the European Security and Peace Facility in order to support the transition processes.

Mali 01.11.21: Mondafrique: Mali, les groupes armés prennent possession de régions proches de Bamako (Mali, armed groups take over regions near Bamako): The Malian army, accused with overwhelming evidence of a massacre of civilians, is unable to repel the advance of the jihadists in the circle of Niono, in the heart of the Segou region a few hundred kilometers from Bamako.

Mali 15.11.2021: Associated Press: EU eyes sanctions in Mali, and against Russian mercenaries: “The European Union is planning to take action against anyone delaying Mali’s political transition and is drawing up a list of sanctions to impose on Russian mercenaries that Mali’s government hired to fight extremists, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said Monday [15 November]. After chairing a meeting of EU foreign ministers, Borrell said that they agreed to set up a system for imposing asset freezes and travel bans on Mali officials and organizations at a future date.”

Mali 16.11.21: France 24: French forces pull out of Tessalit base amid northern Mali drawdown:The northern base is the second French outpost to be evacuated after the Kidal base was handed over to the Malian army in October. A third base, in Timbuktu, will be closed by the end of the year.”

Mali 20.11.21: RFI: Mali: une coalition de partis boycottera les assises du pouvoir (Mali: a coalition of parties will boycott the government meeting): On 19 November, a dozen political organisations informed the transitional president, Colonel Assimi Goïta, of their refusal to take part in national consultations, which the government is making a decisive event before holding elections.

Mauritania/ EU 17.11.2021: Sahara Media: Renouvelleent de l’accord de pêche entre la Mauritanie et l’union européenne pour une période de 5 ans (Renewal of the Fishery Agreement between the EU and Mauritania for a period of five years): The Mauritanian government and the EU have renewed their fishery agreement for another five years. The fishery agreement will allow European fishers an annual amount of 290.000 tons of Mauritanian waters. In return the Mauritanian government receives 57 mil € from the EU.

See also: 19.11.2021: The Conversation: African Maritime Rule favour big industry, leaving small-scale fishers in the lurch

Niger 20.11.21: Le Figaro: Le Niger va acheter du matériel militaire dont des drones à la Turquie (Niger to buy military equipment including drones from Turkey): A source close to the Nigerian presidency „confirmed“ Saturday to AFP that a “meeting that took place this week on the phone between Presidents Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Mohammed Bazoum. The two presidents discussed ‘the forthcoming purchase by Niger of drones, military aircraft and Turkish armored vehicles,’ according to this source.”

Niger 22.11.21: Koaci: Quatre organisations syndicales exigent le départ des forces françaises (Niger: Four trade unions demand the departure of French forces): In a communiqué, the General Confederation of Free Trade Unions (CGSL), the Confederation of Niger Workers (CNT), the Union of Trade Unions and Progressive Workers (USPT) and the Union of Niger Workers‘ Unions (USTN), united in the Niger Workers‘ Intersyndicale (ITN), expressed concern about the deterioration of the security climate and questioned the presence of foreign forces.

Niger 27.11.21: Al Jazeera: Deaths in Niger as protesters confront French army convoy:A French military convoy heading to Mali has run into more trouble in a town in Niger after being delayed for more than a week by protests in Burkina Faso, with the Nigerien government reporting two deaths and 18 wounded. The supply convoy, which arrived in Africa in Ivory Coast last week, had crossed Burkina Faso and on Friday entered Niger on its way to central Mali.”

22.11.21: Blogpost by Rahame Idrissa: Du sentiment anti-français au Sahel, 28.11.21: Intel Air & Sea/Twitter: A French Air Force Mirage 2000 dispensing some flares to disperse some protest in Niger

Sahel 13.11.2021: The Associated Press: UN says many lives lost daily in Africa’s Sahel crisis: At the UN Council meeting on the G5 Sahel force, UN peacekeeping chief, Jean-Pierre Lacroix, raised strong concern over the multi-dimensional crisis faced by people living in Africa’s Sahel region. In the same speech he reiterated his support for Secretary General Antonio Guterres’ call for the launch of a political forum, which would bring together representatives from the G5 countries, international and regional organisations, as well as the UN, the EU and Security Council members.

See also Middle East Eye 14.11.21: Washington maintient son refus d’une implication de l’ONU pour soutenir la force G5 Sahel (Washington maintains its refusal of UN involvement to support the G5 Sahel force)

Senegal 04.11.21: AP Senegal: 82 candidats à l’émigration et leur pirogue sauvés au large de Saint-Louis (Marine Nationale) (82 Migrants Rescued by the Senegalese Navy): The national navy, alerted by „a Spanish military patrol plane temporarily based in Dakar“, d stopped to stop the wooden boat 86 km off Saint-Louis (north). „Thanks to the decisive action of the speedboat crews, all the passengers were rescued and taken on board national navy vessels and then brought back safely to the military port”.

EUROPEAN UNION

Frontex: 01.12.21: NYT: E.U. Interpreter Says Greece Expelled Him to Turkey in Migrant Roundup: A European Union interpreter says that in September, Greek border guards mistook him for an asylum seeker, assaulted him and then forced him across the border into Turkey alongside dozens of migrants.

EUROPE

Bulgaria 02.11.21: InfoMigrants: Bulgaria sends troops to Turkish border to deal with migrants: On 1 November Bulgaria sent 350 soldiers to the Turkish border. “The troops arrived with 40 units of military equipment, although it wasn’t specified exactly what that equipment was, reported the news agency Agence France Presse (AFP).” The reason for increased military presence at the border was, according to the Bulgarian Minister of the Interior Mladen Marinov, an increasing number of people on the move.

France/UK 30.11.21: Calais Migrant Solidarity: Deaths and push-backs through calculated non-assistance in the Channel: “As news began circulating that a boat had sunk in the middle of the Channel and that 27 people, men, women and children, had lost their lives on Wednesday 24 November, both the British and French governments were quick to blame ‘people smugglers’ for the loss of life. The information that has emerged since shows that it was the decision on the part of authorities not to intervene, nor cooperate with one another, after being alerted to the boat in distress that led directly to their deaths.”

See also 01.12.21: Jungle of Calais: „The British police didn’t help us“; 24.11.21: Calais.Bordermonitoring: Der Tod vor Calais (The death off Calais); 24.11.21: Al Jazeera: Dozens of refugees, migrants die as boat sinks in English Channel; 26.11.21: taz: 27 Menschen im Ärmelkanal ertrunken (27 people drowned in the English Channel); 29.11.21: InfoMigrants: Frontex plane to patrol English Channel after Calais emergency talks; 29.11.21: Guardian: Channel crossings are an English issue, says French minister

Germany 26.11.21: taz: Empörung über „Rückführungsoffensive“ (Outrage over „repatriation offensive): The new German coalition’s decisions on migration are more liberal than the asylum policy up to now. Nevertheless, the plans are sharply criticised from the left, because they insist on fostering migration control é la fortress Europe.

Greece 14.11.21: The Guardian: On trial for saving lives: the young refugee activist facing a Greek court:Activists have been accused of human trafficking, money laundering, fraud and espionage – the last charge based on allegations that, while on Lesbos, the Aegean island at the centre of refugee flows, they monitored coastguard radio channels and vessels to gain advance notification of the location of smugglers’ boats.”

See also 08.11.21: taz: Geflüchtete vor Gericht in Griechenland: Die Not der Steuermänner (Refugees in court in Greece: The plight of the helmsmen); 18.11.21: taz: Auf die Hilfe droht die Haft (Help is followed by imprisonment)

See also 18.11.21: Dutch journalist forced to leave Greece after threats and intimidation

Greece 26.11.21: MEMO: NGOs warn that refugees, asylum seekers face hunger in Greece: “Twenty-seven prominent NGOs in Greece warned, Thursday [25.11.2021], that refugees and asylum seekers face hunger following the government’s decision in October to halt services to those whose asylum applications have been accepted, Anadolu News Agency reports.”

Greece 28.11.21: DW: „Geschlossene“ Flüchtlingslager eröffnet („Closed“ refugee camps opened): The Greek government has opened two closed facilities on the islands of Leros and Kos. „We free our islands from the migration problem and its consequences”, as the Greek government said. The government has received a lot of criticism from human rights activists, who expect massive human rights violations in the newly opened camps due to their structure and restrictions.

See also 30.11.21: Al Jazeera: ‘This is a new wave’: Hundreds of Cubans seek refuge in Greece

REPORTS

12.11.21 Legal Centre Lesvos: Family Reunification in Greece: A Few Hard Wins Among Many Bureaucratic And Systemic Obstacles: The report “provide[s] an overview of the challenges faced by migrants in accessing their rights to family life and the sources of these long delays in reunification, based on the Legal Centre’s experiences and the testimonies of those we have supported in their efforts to join relatives elsewhere in Europe.”

See also October 2021: Réseau Bilatéral Maroobé and Partners: Rural and Pastoral Crises, Security Crises: The Urgent Need to Break the Vicious Circle of Violence, Mobilising Against Communitarisation: A Contributing Factor to Pastoral and Security Crises in the Sahel

16.11.2021: OXFAM: Detention as the Default: How Greece, with the support of the EU, is generalizing administrative detention of migrants: “Putting migrants and asylum seekers into detention for administrative reasons is a common practice in Greece, despite this policy contravening human rights. Greek authorities are using detention and the new EU-funded closed compounds as a way to discourage people from seeking asylum in Europe.”

23.11.2021: Mobile Info Team: Lives on hold. Access to asylum on mainland Greece, Crete and rhodes: “Our report shows that people experience exceedingly long delays when trying to reach the Greek Asylum Service on Skype. On average, those we spoke with for this report were still attempting to get through after 14 months. Rather than providing an efficient way to lodge their asylum claim as soon as possible, the Skype system obstructs access to international protection in Greece.”


CAMPAIGNS

Abolish Frontex On 18 December, take action to Abolish Frontex and the system it represents. Find ideas for actions and a list of Frontex locations here: https://abolishfrontex.org/take-action/

Channel Rescue: Stop Priti Patel’s Dangerous Pushback Policy We need your support to stop the Government from implementing this policy, and to continue campaigning for safe routes for people who need to seek sanctuary in Britain.

FeministAsylum European petition for an effective recognition of the specific grounds for asylum for women, girls and LGBTIQA+ people: More than 180 organizations in 14 European countries are supporting this petition (see list of supporters below)! The support of organizations is not enough: we need individual signatures from all interested people. Sign the Petition

Free the Samos 2 „The real crime is the border regime – Free the #Samos2“. We are now 70 organizations and groups across Europe demanding the charges against them to be dropped and to free the #Samos2! On Monday, 08 November 2021 we want to go public with the campaign. For it to make an impact, we need your support to make the campaign visible.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Online Seminar 09.12.21 // 12:00-13:30 (CET) // Border Criminologies: ‚The Merging of EU Migration Management with the Fight Against Crime: Adverse Consequences in Africa‘

Hybrid Webinar 09.12.21 // 14:00-16:00 (CET) // Instituto Affari Internazionali: “Governance, Fragility and Insurgency in the #Sahel: A Hybrid #PoliticalOrder in the Making”

 

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