• 430,000 flee Cameroon’s restive Anglophone areas, says group

    An international refugee agency says that more than 430,000 people have fled violence in Cameroon’s restive English-speaking regions and are hiding in rural areas with few resources.

    The Norwegian Refugee Council, one of several humanitarian organizations offering support, said Wednesday it is assisting the displaced by providing shelter and supplies to needy families. David Manan, the Norwegian group’s country director for Cameroon, called for more international aid.

    He said there are too few agencies on the ground to provide the amount of aid needed. He said many people are hiding in the bush.

    Cameroon’s English-speaking separatists have been protesting since 2016 against what they claim is discrimination by the French-speaking majority. Their protests were initially peaceful, but in response to a government crackdown some separatists are waging a violent campaign.

    https://www.thestate.com/news/nation-world/world/article223306000.html
    #Cameroun #Cameroun_anglophone #asile #migrations #réfugiés #COI #IDPs #déplacés_internes

    • Conflict in Cameroon’s Anglophone regions forces 430,000 people to flee

      The number of people displaced as a result of the crisis in Cameroon’s Anglophone regions has spiked to more than 430,000 during the last months. Many people are hiding in the bush with no support, warns the Norwegian Refugee Council.

      “We are deeply worried by the ongoing conflict and the increasing displacement figures. Parties to the conflict must ensure that civilians in the area are protected and are able to safely access life-saving assistance,” said David Manan, Country Director for the Norwegian Refugee Council in Cameroon.

      The number of people displaced from their homes in Cameroon’s Anglophone Southwest and Northwest regions and in neighbouring Littoral and West regions has reached 437.000, according to the latest UN estimates.

      NRC is assisting people displaced by this crisis. However, many people are left without any support, as insecurity is hindering organisations from accessing many areas. People are without proper shelter and sanitation facilities, clean water, food and access to medical care.

      “The needs we are witnessing in the Southwest and Northwest regions are alarming and there are too few agencies on the ground to provide the necessary aid due to limited funding. We call for more donors to prioritise this crisis to allow more agencies to respond so that we can stem the rising tide of suffering and displacement,” said Manan.

      “Displaced families who receive our assistance have told us that they share it or give it to their relatives who did not yet receive any assistance and desperately need help. Many people are hiding in the bush with no support, fearing for their lives,” added Manan.

      “This is the first time I am being helped since I fled,” said Annoh, who received essential household items, including materials to build a shelter. “I will share what I have received with my husband who is hiding in the bush. He has nothing but the clothes he was wearing when he fled,” she added.

      NRC is distributing household items, shelter and hygiene kits in Northwest and Southwest regions with support from the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (NMFA) and European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO).


      https://www.nrc.no/news/2018/december/conflict-in-cameroons-anglophone-regions-forces-430000-people-to-flee

    • A generation of unschooled Cameroonians, another generation of conflict?

      “As we trekked, they kept on telling us that they don’t want us to go to school again,” says 15-year-old Martha Lum, four weeks after being released by the armed gunmen who kidnapped her along with 78 other children and staff members in Cameroon.

      Lum’s story is becoming common across the country’s Northwest and Southwest regions, where the conflict between anglophone separatists and francophone armed forces that’s claimed hundreds of lives has made schools a battlefield.

      Since the anglophone conflict escalated in late 2017, more than 430,000 people have been forced to flee their homes. In May, the UN’s emergency aid coordination body, OCHA, said approximately 42,500 children were out of school. However, local rights groups estimate that number has now increased fourfold following frequent abductions.

      Some 20,000 school-age children now live in the bush. With no learning materials or trained teachers, they have no access to a formal education. Parents and local officials worry that the children could be driven to take up arms, becoming a lost generation that perpetuates the conflict and the humanitarian crisis.

      “Imagine that these children miss school for five or 10 years because of the fighting, hearing the sound of guns every day, and seeing people being killed; what will become of them?” says 45-year-old mother of four *Elizabeth Tamufor.

      “We have been hiding in the bush for more than a year,” she tells IRIN. “I am sure the children have forgotten what they were taught in school. You think in five years they will still be hiding here? They will probably pick up guns and start fighting.”

      The fear of schoolchildren and young students joining the armed separatists is already a reality for some. *Michael, 20, used to be a student before the conflict started. He joined the separatists when his friend was killed by government forces.

      “I replaced books with the gun since then. But I will return to school immediately we achieve our independence,” he says.
      Right from the start

      The roots of Cameroon’s anglophone conflict can be traced back to education. The separatists fighting for independence from French-majority Cameroon say the current school system symbolises the marginalisation of the English language and culture.

      After years of discontent, in November 2016, anglophone teachers began an indefinite strike to protest what they said amounted to systematic discrimination against English-speaking teachers and students. In response, government security forces clamped down on protests, arresting hundreds of demonstrators, including children, killing at least four people and wounding many more.

      This caused widespread anger across the Southwest and Northwest regions, which a year later led to the rise of the armed separatist groups now fighting for independence and a new English-speaking nation called “#Ambazonia”.

      Although the majority of teacher trade unions called off their strike in February 2017, separatists continue to impose curfews and abduct people as a means to push the local population to refrain from sending children back to school.

      As a result, tens of thousands of children haven’t attended school since 2016. Local media is awash with stories of kidnappings of children and teachers who do not comply with the boycott, while rights groups say the disruption of education puts children at risk of exploitation, child labour, recruitment by armed groups, and early marriage.

      “Schools have become targets,” a July 2018 Human Rights Watch report notes. “Either because of these threats, or as a show of solidarity by parents and teachers with the separatist cause, or both, school enrollment levels have dropped precipitously during the crisis.”

      In June, Amnesty International said at least 42 schools had been attacked since February last year. While latest statistics are not available, it is believed that at least 100 separate incidents of school kidnapping have taken place since the separatist movement turned violent in 2017. More than 100 schools have also been torched and at least a dozen teachers killed or wounded, according to Issa Tchiroma, Cameroon’s minister of communication.
      The separatist view

      Speaking to IRIN last month in Bali, a town neighbouring Bamenda – the capital of Northwest region – armed separatist leader *Justin says his group is enforcing the school boycott started by the teacher trade unions.

      “They (teachers) started a strike action to resist the ‘francophonisation’ of the anglophone system of education, and the evil francophone regime arrested and detained their colleagues, shot dead schoolchildren, and you expect us to sit down and watch them killing our people?”

      “We don’t want the schoolchildren of Ambazonia to be part of the corrupt francophone system of education,” he said. “We have designed a new school programme for them which will start as soon as we achieve our independence.“

      *Laba, who controls another group of armed separatists, is more categorical. “When we say no school, we mean no school,” he says emphatically. “We have never and will never kill a student or teacher. We just want them to stay home until we get our independence and begin implementing our own system of education.”

      There are about 20 armed separatist groups across the two English-speaking regions. They operate independently, and separatists have publicly disagreed on the various methods of imposing the school boycott.

      Both Justin and Laba accuse the government of staging “some” of the school abductions in order “to discredit the image of the separatists internationally”. But they also admit that some armed separatist groups are guilty of kidnapping and killing children and teachers.

      “We don’t kidnap schoolchildren,” Justin says. “We just impose curfews to force them to stay home.”

      But for many parents and schoolchildren, staying at home for this long is already having devastating consequences.
      School children in uniforms walk on the street toward camera.

      ‘Everything is different’

      Parents who can afford it have enrolled their children in schools in the French-speaking part of the country – mostly Douala and Yaoundé. But the influx has caused fees to rise in the francophone zones. Tuition fees that normally cost $150 annually have now more than doubled to $350.

      Beyond the costs, parents also need to transport their children from the troubled regions, along a very insecure highway, to apply for enrollment.

      When they get there, success is far from guaranteed. A lot of the francophone schools are now at full capacity and have stopped accepting students from anglophone regions, meaning many children will likely have to stay home for yet another year.

      Those studying in a new environment can also take quite a while to adapt.

      George Muluh, 16, had been at a school in the Southwest region before the conflict but is now attending Government Bilingual High School Deido in Douala.

      “Everything is just different,” he says. “I don’t understand French. The classrooms are overcrowded. The teaching method is different. I am getting more and more confused every day. I just want the conflict to end so I can go back to the Southwest to continue my studies.”

      It might be a long while before George has that opportunity. To the Cameroonian government, the teachers’ grievances have already been solved.

      “The government has employed 1,000 bilingual teachers, allocated two billion CFA ($4 million) to support private education, transferred teachers who could not speak French and redeployed them to French zones. These were the demands of the teachers. What do they want again?” asks Tchiroma, the minister of communication.

      But Sylvester Ngan, from the Teachers Association of Cameroon (TAC), which defends the rights of English-speaking teachers in the country, says most of these measures are cosmetic and don’t solve key issues related to French-only exams and francophone teachers in English schools.
      Leave the children alone

      While the government and teachers’ unions argue about who is right and what education system to implement, the war is ongoing, people are dying, and tens of thousands of children are not in school.

      “No reason can be advanced to justify the unwarranted attacks on children in general and pupils who are seeking to acquire knowledge and skills,” says Jacques Boyer, UNICEF representative in Cameroon. “All children in the regions must be able to go to school in peace.”

      President Paul Biya, 85, who just won another seven-year term after 36 years in power, has ignored calls for an inclusive dialogue to end the conflict. The first related measure he undertook after the October election was the creation of a commission to disarm and reintegrate former armed separatists.

      Cameroonian political analyst Michael Mbah describes the move as “a joke”, saying that a ceasefire and dialogue must precede any serious attempt at disarmament and reintegration.

      Meanwhile, the next year looks bleak for children like Lum whose futures are being decided by a war beyond their control. “I have always wanted to become a medical doctor,” Lum tells IRIN, but she now fears her dream will be shattered by the persistent conflict.

      “Leave the children alone,” says *Raymond, a father of four whose offspring haven’t been able to study for close to two years now.

      “We, parents, cannot afford to raise a generation of illiterates,” he says. “The future of the children is being sacrificed, just like that.”

      *Names changed at the request of the interviewees for security reasons.

      https://www.irinnews.org/news-feature/2018/12/19/cameroon-generation-unschooled-children-could-fuel-long-term-conflict
      #éducation #droit_à_l'éducation #école #scolarisation #enfants #enfance #conflit

    • République d’#Ambazonie

      « Le nom Ambazonia a été préféré à Southern British Cameroons afin de ne pas confondre cette zone avec la région territoriale du sud (Southern Cameroon). Les « autonomistes ambazoniens » avaient à cœur de trouver un nom local afin de bannir « Cameroun » qu’ils considéraient comme le symbole du lourd fardeau de l’héritage colonial. Pour cela, ils ont fouillé dans les livres d’histoire et inventé le nom Ambazonia. Celui-ci dérive d’Ambas, nom donné à la région de l’embouchure du fleuve Wouri. Ce site, en forme de baie, avait alors reçu le nom anglais Baie d’Ambas1. »

      https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/R%C3%A9publique_d%27Ambazonie

  • Migranti, la grande espulsione. Quarantamila fuori dai centri

    In vigore il decreto sicurezza. Senza lavoro 15mila operatori. Mattarella difende patto Onu

    I migranti sotto protezione umanitaria dovranno lasciare anche i centri di prima accoglienza. Tutti, anche famiglie con bambini. La comunicazione arriva dalle Prefetture. Prime espulsioni in tutta Italia.
    Rischiano 40mila persone, 15mila operatori perderanno il lavoro.

    Fuori dagli Sprar, come prevede la legge Salvini, ma anche fuori dai Cas e dai Cara, secondo una “conseguenziale” interpretazione data dai prefetti di tutta Italia che, da qualche giorno, hanno cominciato a riunire i gestori dei centri comunicando loro che i titolari di protezione umanitaria dovranno lasciare anche le strutture di prima accoglienza. Tutti, comprese donne e famiglie con bambini. Già ieri 26 persone sono state invitate a lasciare immediatamente il Cara di Isola Capo Rizzuto in Calabria: tra loro una donna incinta e un bambino di cinque mesi, subito presi in carico dalla Croce Rossa.

    Tutti migranti regolari, tutti con documenti di identità e permesso di protezione umanitaria, tutti destinati alla strada come altri 40mila, questa la stima fatta dalle associazioni di settore, interessati dai provvedimenti dei prefetti che, chi con data perentoria chi con maggiore elasticità a difesa delle situazioni più vulnerabili, hanno
    così allargato a dismisura la portata della legge Salvini, di fatto privando di qualsiasi tipo di accoglienza i titolari di protezione umanitaria.

    E proprio nel giorno in cui da Verona il presidente della Repubblica richiamava ad un senso di comune responsabilità nell’affrontare il problema dell’immigrazione «un fenomeno che non è più di carattere emergenziale ma strutturale e quindi costituisce una delle grandi sfide che si presentano all’Unione europea e a tutto il mondo ed è un’esigenza che richiama alla responsabilità comune».

    Mattarella, facendo appello all’Unione europea ad «assumere questo fenomeno che non va ignorato ma affrontato» ha implicitamente invitato il governo italiano (che non intende sottoscriverlo) a leggere il Global Compact delle Nazioni Unite «prima di formulare un giudizio perché non si esprimono opinioni e giudizi per sentito dire».

    https://www.meltingpot.org/Migranti-la-grande-espulsione-Quarantamila-fuori-dai-centri.html

    #chômage #Decreto_Salvini #Italie #SDF #sans-abri #asile #migrations #réfugiés

    • Dl Sicurezza, 24 migranti cacciati dal Cara di Isola Capo Rizzuto e portati in stazione: “Non hanno un posto dove andare”

      La prefettura di Crotone ha deciso di far uscire il gruppo per applicare il provvedimento appena approvato dal Parlamento. Gli stranieri sono in possesso del permesso di soggiorno umanitario e pur avendo diritto di stare in Italia, non possono beneficiare del diritto d’accoglienza nel sistema Sprar o restare nel sistema di prima accoglienza

      Ventiquattro migranti hanno dovuto lasciare il Cara di Isola Capo Rizzuto, a seguito di un provvedimento emesso dalla prefettura di Crotone in ottemperanza al decreto Sicurezza approvato nei giorni scorsi in Parlamento. Gli stranieri sono in possesso del permesso di soggiorno umanitario e pur avendo diritto di stare in Italia, non possono beneficiare del diritto d’accoglienza nel sistema Sprar o restare nel sistema di prima accoglienza. Il gruppo, nonostante la protesta organizzata nel pomeriggio per chiedere di non lasciare il centro, è stato fatto salire su un pullman e accompagnato alla stazione ferroviaria di Crotone.

      Lì c’erano ad attenderli i volontari delle associazioni che si occupano di assistenza e che si stanno adoperando per trovare per loro una sistemazione temporanea per la prossima notte. I rifugiati allontanati dal Cara, infatti, non hanno un luogo dove andare e per evitare che passino la notte all’addiaccio, è intervenuta la rete delle associazioni solidali di Crotone. L’accoglienza, però, secondo quanto hanno spiegato queste ultime, potrà essere garantita solo per pochi giorni, dopodiché dovranno tornare in strada. Nella stazione ferroviaria di Crotone, ci sono i volontari di Legacoop Calabria, che stanno fornendo loro assistenza. Secondo Pino De Lucia, responsabile immigrazione di Legacoop Calabria, “i costi per eventuali casi speciali che riguardano migranti minori, malati e disabili, sono a carico dei Comuni ospitanti, con notevole aggravio per le casse degli enti locali”. Tra le persone destinatarie del provvedimento c’è anche una giovanissima coppia, lei nigeriana, lui ghanese, con una bambina di cinque mesi, che sarà ospitata, assieme ad un’altra donna, a Crotone a cura della Croce Rossa e della Caritas, con vitto e alloggio assicurato per una ventina di giorni.

      Il Cara di #Isola_di_Capo_Rizzuto era finito al centro delle polemiche a maggio 2017, dopo l’arresto per ‘ndrangheta di 68 persone. Secondo quanto rivelato nelle indagini, dei 100 milioni di euro stanziati negli ultimi 10 anni per i migranti, 32 andavano alla ‘ndrangheta. Secondo i pm la cosca Arena, era riuscita ad aggiudicarsi gli appalti indetti dalla prefettura di Crotone per le forniture dei servizi di ristorazione al centro di accoglienza di Isola Capo Rizzuto e di Lampedusa. Le indagini rivelarono anche che venivano dato cibo per maiali ai migranti.

      https://www.ilfattoquotidiano.it/2018/11/30/dl-sicurezza-24-migranti-cacciati-da-cara-di-isola-capo-rizzuto-e-portati-in-stazione-non-hanno-un-posto-dove-andare/4804833/amp/?__twitter_impression=true

    • I primi effetti del decreto (in)sicurezza

      I primi effetti del decreto (in)sicurezza confermano, purtroppo, quanto in molti stiamo denunciando da settembre, da quando la bozza del decreto ha iniziato a circolare.
      Sono già diverse decine le persone, alcuni bambini piccolissimi, costretti a stare per strada perché impossibilitate ad accedere alle strutture di seconda accoglienza (sono di ieri le prime circolari emanate da diverse Prefetture).
      Se il Presidente della Repubblica firmerà la legge licenziata dalla camera, la situazione, nel medio e lungo periodo, peggiorerà sempre più. Migliaia di persone saranno costrette all’esclusione e alla marginalità sociale in nome della demagogia e del populismo.

      A pagare il prezzo più alto saranno i più deboli, come al solito d’altronde, costretti a vivere sempre più ai margini, lontano dagli occhi dei più, nelle baraccopoli che affollano le periferie dalle nostre città e delle nostre campagne, come quella nella piana di Gioia Tauro dove ieri sera è morta un’altra persona, in quei «ghetti» utili a chi domanda lavoro da sfruttare per incrementare i propri profitti, quelli attarversati della violenza che, in quei luoghi, colpisce soprattutto le donne, le più invisibili tra gli invisibili.
      Chi guadagnerà in tutto ciò? Solo sciacalli e criminali:
      – i politicanti che proveranno a tradurre in consenso la frustrazione della gente che vede il proprio nemico in chi è affamato e non in chi affama;
      – gli enti gestori e il considerevole indotto economico creato da quei luoghi di detenzione amministrativa chiamati centri per il riconoscimento e il rimpatrio in cui le persone saranno recluse fino a 180 giorni senza aver commesso alcun reato per essere poi rilasciate in condizione di irregolarità sul territorio;
      – le aziende senza scrupoli che sfrutteranno il lavoro privato di diritti degli uomini e delle donne colpite dagli effetti del decreto (in)sicurezza;
      – le organizzazioni criminali che gestiscono la tratta della prostituzione e il traffico di stupefacenti;
      – chi potrà acquistare, o meglio riacquistare, i beni sequestrati alle organizzazioni mafiose.

      Ognuno di noi deve decidere da che parte stare, sono sicuro che la maggioranza delle persone per bene, di chi crede nell’eguaglianza, nei diritti umani, non starà con le mani in mano.
      Noi continueremo a resistere, disubbidiremo e ci organizzeremo per contrastare la barbarie, come già stiamo facendo, e lo faremo sempre meglio.
      Touche pas à mon pote, non toccare il mio amico! Non toccate i nostri fratelli, non toccate le nostre sorelle!

      https://migr-azioni.blogspot.com/2018/12/i-primi-effetti-del-decreto-insicurezza.html?m=1

    • Dl sicurezza, in 24 allontanati da Cara

      Prima notte fuori dal Centro accoglienza richiedenti asilo di #Isola_Capo_Rizzuto, tra disagi e preoccupazione, per i 24 migranti in possesso di permesso umanitario allontanati in ottemperanza al Decreto Sicurezza. Solo una parte di loro è riuscita a trovare un tetto a Crotone dove sono stati accompagnati: una giovanissima coppia di origine africana con la loro bambina di cinque mesi, ospitati da Croce rossa e Caritas per una ventina di giorni e quattro donne, vittime di tratta, accolte provvisoriamente dalla cooperativa l’Agorà. Gli altri componenti del primo gruppo - altri ne usciranno lunedì per un totale stimato in 200 che dovranno lasciare la struttura entro la prossima settimana - si sono dovuti accontentare di soluzioni di fortuna probabilmente all’interno della baraccopoli sorta in corrispondenza del cavalcavia nord della città di Crotone. In base a quanto stabilisce il Dl Sicurezza, i migranti destinatari dei provvedimenti, pur avendo diritto a stare in Italia, non possono beneficiare del diritto all’accoglienza nel sistema Sprar. Né possono restare nel sistema di prima accoglienza. Da ieri sera, nella città calabrese meta di numerosi sbarchi di migranti, le associazioni che si occupano di accoglienza e assistenza si sono attivate per trovare soluzioni alla problematica.

      http://www.ansa.it/calabria/notizie/2018/11/30/dl-sicurezza-in-24-allontanati-da-cara_6f548eae-48de-46a0-bc22-d0bfb015180f.htm

    • Migranti, trattenute a #Malpensa senza assistenza

      Due donne, una cubana e una senegalese, sono bloccate all’area arrivi dell’aeroporto, rispettivamente da 96 e da 51 ore. Erano di rientro da un periodo di vacanze nel loro Paese d’origine e al controllo documenti hanno scoperto che i loro permessi di soggiorno sono stati revocati. Negato finora negato il permesso di incontrare un avvocato.

      Stavano tornando in Italia dove un periodo di vacanze nel loro Paese. Ma agli arrivi dell’aeroporto di Malpensa hanno scoperto che il loro permesso di soggiorno era stato revocato. E ora sono bloccate in aeroporto, nell’area dei controlli dei documenti, senza poter incontrare qualcuno che possa dare loro assistenza legale. E’ quanto sta avvenendo a due donne straniere, una cubana e una senegalese, accomunate ora dal fatto di vivere in un limbo. La donna cubana è trattenuta a Malpensa da 96 ore, mentre quella senegalese, che è anche in stato di gravidanza, da 51 ore. Da questa mattina in aeroporto è presente Giulia Vicini, avvocata dell’Associazione studi giuridici dell’immigrazione (Asgi): “Il problema è che non mi permettono di incontrare le due donne –spiega-. Non mi fanno accedere nell’area dove sono trattenute, con la motivazione che si tratterebbe di territorio internazionale, non sottoposto alla giurisdizione nazionale”. L’avvocata contesta questa motivazione. “E’ come se dicessero che in aeroporto c’è una zona che non è Italia. Il fatto stesso che siano trattenute lì significa che ci sono funzionari della polizia e quindi stanno esercitando la giurisdizione”. Per cercare di sbloccare al più presto la situazione (il volo di ritorno per la donna senegalese partirà in serata) ha mandato due mail pec al Garante nazionale dei diritti delle persone detenute o private della libertà personale. “Il problema di fondo è che se non incontrano un avvocato queste due donne non possono firmare il mandato per presentare il ricorso. Viene loro negato il diritto di fare ricorso”.

      Alla signora senegalese il permesso di soggiorno sarebbe stato revocato per insufficienza del reddito. La donna cubana ha ottenuto la cittadinanza italiana, ma deve ancora fare il giuramento e le è stato revocato il permesso di soggiorno perché non è più convivente con il marito, dal quale si sarebbe separata. “Si tratta di revoche contestabili perché si basano su interpretazioni secondo noi errate delle norme in materia”, sottolinea l’avvocata Giulia Vicini. Ma, comunque, al di là degli aspetti giuridici delle revoche dei permessi di soggiorno, il problema ora è che sono trattenute a Malpensa senza poter ricevere assistenza.

      Il caso delle due donne ricorda quello della famiglia marocchina di cui si è occupato Redattore sociale: padre, madre e quattro figli, in Italia da oltre un decennio. Al ritorno da un periodo di vacanza, la donna ha scoperto che il suo permesso di soggiorno era stato revocato. Lei, con tre dei figli, ha dovuto fare ritorno in Marocco, lui è rimasto in Italia con la più piccola. Hanno fatto ricorso e, dopo più di un anno, hanno ottenuto il permesso di rientrare in Italia e vivere di nuovo tutti insieme.

      http://www.redattoresociale.it/Notiziario/Articolo/609515/Migranti-trattenute-a-Malpensa-senza-assistenza
      #aéroport #limbe

      –---------

      Aggiornamento del collega Dario Paladini: la donna senegalese è stata rimpatriata nella serata di ieri, la donna cubana ancora in aeroporto #Milano #Malpensa

      https://twitter.com/EleonoraCamilli/status/1069164388765102080

      Aggiornamento/2 Anche la signora cubana è stata rimpatriata. Ieri sera sul tardi. E senza aver potuto parlare con un avvocato. (Dario Paladini)

      https://twitter.com/EleonoraCamilli/status/1069332199625973760

    • Decreto sicurezza. È caos accoglienza. Scoppia il caso #Mineo

      Famiglie e bambini verranno allontanati a giorni. Il vescovo eri: «Abbandonare i cani è reato. Lasciare persone per strada ’è legge’. Se serve apriremo le chiese per dare un tetto»

      Ieri sarebbe dovuto toccare a una mamma con la sua bambina colpita da broncopolmonite. Ma la cacciata dei migranti dal Cara di Mineo, il più grande d’Italia, è stata posticipata di qualche giorno. Le istituzioni non si occuperanno di dare un tetto alle famiglie con bambini escluse dal sistema di protezione, ma il vescovo di Caltagirone non ci sta, e ha già trovato 40 posti letto. Se non bastassero, «apriremo anche le chiese per alloggiare queste persone», annuncia monsignor Calogero Peri. Entro l’11 dicembre quasi 90 persone su 1.800 verranno accompagnate fuori dalla struttura. Poi ne seguiranno altri secondo una tabella di marcia non ancora precisata.

      A pochi giorni dal Natale, l’Italia mostra il suo volto peggiore. Verranno allontanati anche bambini da 1 a 12 anni, molti dei quali nati proprio in Sicilia durante la permanenza dei genitori nel Centro per richiedenti asilo. L’ultima volta il cappuccino Peri ne ha battezzati 11 e il rito dell’amministrazione dei Sacramenti non di rado si tiene nella cattedrale di Caltagirone, coinvolgendo così tutta la diocesi. Ma adesso questi bambini figli di migranti non solo dovranno trovarsi un tetto, ma saranno costretti ad abbandonare la scuola dell’obbligo, almeno fino a quando non raggiungeranno un’altra città italiana dove riorganizzare un futuro sempre più in salita. Nessuno dei cacciati potrà tornare nei Paesi d’origine e, dovendo vivere in “clandestinità”, non è neanche certo che i bambini continueranno gli studi da qualche altra parte.

      E pensare che il Cara «fu fortemente voluto da Forza Italia e dalla Lega Nord, rispettivamente nella persona di Silvio Berlusconi, presidente del consiglio, e di Roberto Maroni, ministro dell’Interno», ricorda Calogero Peri. Una decisione che fu imposta «contro le alternative proposte dai sindaci del territorio». Nei giorni scorsi il ministro Salvini ha provato a rassicurare: «Sembrava a leggere i giornali che io buttassi fuori la notte della vigilia di Natale donne incinte, bambine e anziani: chi è nello Sprar arriva alla fine del percorso Sprar, se uno ha ancora un anno sta lì un anno». Affermazione che elude la situazione di tutte le altre strutture di permanenza, come i Centri per richiedenti asilo. Proprio come a Mineo. Quello del presule siciliano è però un richiamo alle coscienze: «In Italia, specialmente prima delle vacanze estive, passa una bella pubblicità: non è civiltà abbandonare i cani per strada e chi lo fa è punito dalla legge. Invece, abbandonare per strada i migranti o, se sembra troppo forte, “accompagnarli” e lasciarli per strada, è “sicurezza”, è legge». I timori sono diffusi in tutta la Penisola. In Lombardia la cooperativa Aeris, con oltre 300 migranti ospitati in circa 150 appartamenti tra Milano, Monza e Lecco, prevede che già solo in questo mese di dicembre rimarranno senza tetto una trentina di migranti con la protezione umanitaria, visto che il decreto Salvini ha loro sbarrato l’accesso ai progetti di accoglienza dello Sprar, il Sistema di protezione per richiedenti asilo e rifugiati. E nei prossimi mesi saranno almeno dai 20 ai 30 gli operatori (soprattutto mediatori culturali) che perderanno il lavoro.

      Il “Progetto Arca”, che attualmente accoglie 500 migranti a Milano, stima che nei prossimi mesi almeno un terzo sarà costretto ad arrangiarsi. Contemporaneamente i mediatori ai quali non verrà rinnovato il contratto a progetto sono una settantina. E la Caritas Ambrosiana prevede che almeno mezzo migliaio di stranieri finiranno a ingrossare le fila dei senzatetto. «Non ci interessa fare i bed & breakfast dei migranti – spiega Alberto Sinigallia, presidente di Progetto Arca – . Oggi prendiamo dai 27 ai 29 euro al giorno per persona ospitata. Con i nuovi bandi delle prefetture non ci sarà più obbligo di garantire neanche corsi di lingua, l’assistenza medica e i percorsi di integrazione. Il prezzo più basso servirà solo per offrire vitto e alloggio. Ma non è la nostra mission». Il decreto sicurezza finirà per rendere più difficile anche i controlli sui malintenzionati. Trasformare i centri d’accoglienza in dormitori senza alcun progetto farà la fortuna di stranieri come i tre richiedenti asilo nigeriani arrestati ieri a Lucca per spaccio di droga e che fino a qualche tempo fa stavano in una struttura per migranti controllata a vista dalla Croce rossa. Le “mele marce” certo non mancano. Ieri la Guardia di finanza di Ferrara ha perquisito 16 strutture attive nell’accoglienza dei migranti.

      Secondo gli investigatori vi sarebbero stati abusi sulla rendicontazione dei servizi erogati, con conseguente danno alle casse pubbliche. L’unica alternativa sembrano essere proprio quegli Sprar che il governo non ha voluto incentivare. Al contrario la Regione Campania chiede all’esecutivo 10 milioni per sostenere le attività di integrazione dei migranti. «Il nostro obiettivo principale – spiega Franco Roberti, assessore regionale alla Sicurezza – è sostenere le attività degli Sprar in tutte le province della Campania».

      https://www.avvenire.it/attualita/pagine/caos-accoglienza-scoppia-il-caso-mineo

    • New Italian law adds to unofficial clampdown on aid to asylum seekers. “Hundreds have already been expelled from reception centres”

      Tens of thousands of vulnerable asylum seekers have lost their right to two-year residency permits and integration services in Italy after new legislation championed by the populist government’s right-wing Interior Minister Matteo Salvini was signed into law this week.

      But over the past two years thousands have already had government services to which they were entitled cut or curtailed, according to interviews with asylum seekers and legal experts over several months, as well as government responses to dozens of freedom of information requests.

      One in every three asylum seekers who arrived in more than half of Italy’s local government prefectures over the past two years has either left or been evicted from their government-run accommodation, according to information IRIN obtained from local governments.

      A request for comment on these findings to the Italian interior ministry went unanswered at time of publication.

      Aid groups warn that the new law will compound an existing crisis in Italy, which is struggling to cope with providing basic services to some 180,000 refugees and asylum seekers awaiting decisions and an estimated 500,000 undocumented migrants – many of whom have already fallen out of the reception system.

      In addition to granting five-year residence permits to refugees and to asylum seekers who meet “subsidiary protection” criteria, Italy has for the past 20 years granted two-year residency permits to a wider group of migrants on comparatively flexible “humanitarian protection” grounds – broadly interpreted as those who aren’t refugees but who can’t be sent home either.

      The controversial new Decree-Law on Immigration and Security, signed by President Sergio Matterella on Monday, scraps “humanitarian protection” altogether and introduces new “special permits” for a much narrower group that comprises: victims of domestic violence, trafficking, and severe exploitation; those with serious health issues; those fleeing natural disasters; and those who commit acts of civic valour.

      –------------------------

      The Decree-Law on Immigration and Security in brief
      “Humanitarian protection” residency permits – granted to one in four asylum seekers last year – abolished
      Asylum seekers lose access to integration services until their application is granted
      Network of reception centres drastically downsized
      Withdrawal of refugee status made easier
      Maximum detention time in “repatriation centres” doubled to six months
      Fast-track expulsions for “socially dangerous” migrants

      –-------------------------

      In 2017, 20,166 people – around 25 percent of the total who sought asylum – were granted “humanitarian protection”. Those who lose their permits also lose their right to work and their right to stay in the best facilities that have services to help them integrate into Italian society.

      Only 25,000 places are available in Italy’s longer-term, government-run reception system, known by its Italian acronym SPRAR, which typically provides high standards of care. This means that more than 150,000 people waiting for decisions on their asylum applications, or 80 percent of the total, are housed in more than 9,000 supposedly temporary accommodation facilities, known by the acronym CAS. These are for the most part managed by commercial entities with no track record in providing housing and services for asylum seekers, and have been associated with corruption and substandard living conditions.

      Some asylum seekers formerly granted “humanitarian protection” are already being forced out of the SPRAR facilities, meaning they also lose out on integration measures such as language classes and work skills courses.

      "Hundreds have already been expelled from reception centres throughout Italy, and left homeless at a moment’s notice,” Oliviero Forti, head of the migration division for Caritas in Italy, told IRIN. “In some places, like Crotone, our charity shelters have been overwhelmed over the weekend. Some very vulnerable individuals, such as pregnant women or persons with psychiatric conditions, are being put on the street without any support measure and, incredibly, government-managed facilities are calling upon Caritas for help.”
      An attempt to reduce arrivals

      Italy overtook Greece in 2016 as the main European entry point for migrants and asylum seekers, receiving 320,000 people in the past two years – the vast majority entering on small, overcrowded vessels operated by smugglers across the Mediterranean from North Africa, or after being rescued en route.

      Salvini, also deputy prime minister, leads the far-right League Party and campaigned on a strongly anti-immigration platform during the March general election. Shortly after taking office in June as part of a fractious ruling coalition with the populist and anti-EU Five Star Movement, Salvini closed the country’s ports to migrant rescue ships.

      Migrants who arrive in Italy by boat typically spend their first two days in initial arrival facilities known as “hotspots”, mostly concentrated in Sicily, where identification procedures take place. Those who are prima facie determined to have a legitimate basis to claim asylum are entitled to a place in the SPRAR system, even if the majority don’t get one.

      These are small facilities evenly distributed across the country, organised by the Interior Ministry and managed by humanitarian organisations with experience working with migrant populations. They are known for providing a high standard of basic services as well as vocational training and psychological counselling. The 25,000 available placements have typically been reserved for the most vulnerable cases, such as minors who are victims of trafficking.

      Under Salvini’s new law, only people who are granted a visa – a process that can take several years — may be placed in SPRAR facilities, not asylum seekers. Migrants and asylum seekers will be sent to a CAS.

      Médecins Sans Frontières warned in a statement that the new law will have a “dramatic impact on the life and health of thousands of people”. MSF said that “over the years it operated inside CAS”, its workers found that prolonged stays in the centres “deteriorates migrants’ mental health” and “hampers their chances of integrating successfully into society”.

      The coalition government promised that Salvini’s new law would result in half a million deportations. Past deportation rates suggest it will be difficult to keep that promise, analysts say. What does seem likely, they say, is that larger numbers of asylum seekers will be detained for longer periods. Salvini’s law doubles to six months the time new arrivals can be held in “repatriation” centres while their identities and nationalities are being confirmed.

      Added to the 30-day detention period many face in hotspot facilities, this means asylum seekers can now be detained for up to seven months without having committed any crime.

      Another measure within the new legislation suspends refugee protections for those considered “socially dangerous” or who are convicted of crimes, even in the first of Italy’s three-stage conviction process.
      Already in crisis

      Based on IRIN’s analysis of responses to freedom of information requests received from 53 of Italy’s 103 prefectures (the others did not reply), the Italian reception system is unable to retain its guests, partly due to a lack of integration opportunities and medical care. More than 28,000 residents have left the temporary facilities over the last 24 months, either because local governments withdrew their right to assistance for alleged violations of certain rules or because the migrants and asylum seekers decided to leave of their own accord.

      Interviews with legal experts, social workers, dozens of migrants, and analysis of the withdrawal orders shows a pattern of widespread violations of migrants’ legal rights in the reception centres, with local authorities sometimes complicit in the abuses.

      The CAS centres – for the most part private-sector hotels and apartments identified and approved by local government – are in theory just one link in a complex and poorly regulated chain of migrant accommodations. But because the SPRAR centres are full to capacity, they have taken on a spill-over function.

      A migrant can be entitled to remain in Italy as an asylum seeker or refugee, but can still lose, with a “withdrawal order”, all institutional support, such as accommodation, training, medical care etc. Under EU law that is legally binding in Italy, withdrawal orders should only be issued as a last resort, to punish violent conduct or severe abuse of the reception benefits.

      Dozens of interviews with former and current CAS residents – as well as withdrawal orders and communications between reception centre managers and government officials seen by IRIN – reveal that this regulation is frequently abused, sometimes to retaliate against residents who protest their treatment within the facilities. Minor infringements such as returning to centres late are routinely penalised, sometimes retroactively, with criteria that vary massively from one prefecture to another – including, sometimes, withdrawal notices.

      The abuse of withdrawal orders “infringes both EU and Italian law, depriving migrants of basic human rights,” said Dario Belluccio, a lawyer and the director of ASGI, a leading association of immigration law scholars.

      Those who receive a withdrawal notice – the number could spike under Salvini’s new law, with more asylum seekers being deemed “socially dangerous” or found guilty of minor infractions – instantly lose their place in a residence centre, a €75 monthly allowance, and virtually all institutional support.

      Those who leave the centres often move to migrant shanty towns, which tend to lack water and electricity and where severe labour exploitation and sex trafficking thrive.

      Helped by the unsatisfactory conditions in the reception system, the shanty towns have grown in size over the past few years. In these communities, migrants often find it difficult to obtain basic services such as healthcare as well as the legal assistance needed to follow up on asylum applications.
      No permit, no job, no home

      Even without a withdrawal order, more asylum seekers and migrants may soon find themselves without access to shelter or services provided by the government. That’s already the case for Becky*, a Nigerian woman in her 20s who was trafficked to Italy for sex work. A social worker familiar with her case, who spoke to IRIN on condition of anonymity for security concerns, said that shortly after arriving in Italy two years ago Becky was forced by her trafficker to leave the reception facility in which she was placed to move to a large shanty town in the province of Foggia.

      When local anti-trafficking authorities became aware of Becky’s case after questions were raised during her asylum interview earlier this year, they offered her a place in a protection facility. But such facilities demand that residents give up their mobile phones to ensure that traffickers can’t track them. Residents are limited to one weekly call to a family member while trafficking allegations are being investigated.

      “It is not an easy choice to make, and she didn’t take up that opportunity,” said the social worker.

      Days before the new immigration law was passed by parliament last month, Becky was issued a humanitarian residence permit by the local asylum commission. But under the new law, authorities are no longer able to distribute the permits, even after they have been granted. “It is not a matter of will, it is literally a matter of police no longer having a button on their computers to print a humanitarian permit,” the social worker noted.

      Without documents, Becky can’t look for a job or new accommodation. So she remains in the shanty town, exactly where her trafficker placed her two years ago.

      https://www.irinnews.org/news-feature/2018/12/07/new-italian-law-adds-unofficial-clampdown-aid-asylum-seekers

    • Vulnerable migrants made homeless after Italy passes ’Salvini decree’

      Decree named after leader of far-right party abolishes humanitarian protection for those not eligible for refugee status.

      Dozens of migrants, including victims of sex trafficking and a child with mental health problems, have been removed from so-called “welcome centres” in Italy as the populist government’s hardline immigration measures kick in.

      The “Salvini decree” – named after Matteo Salvini, interior minister and leader of the far-right League – won a vote in parliament last week and was formally endorsed by the president Sergio Mattarella on Monday.

      The main element of the bill, which abolishes humanitarian protection for those not eligible for refugee status but who cannot be sent home, was however retroactively applied by the interior ministry’s representative in Crotone, a province in the southern Calabria region, where last Friday 24 people were forced to leave a centre in the town of Isola Capo Rizzuto.

      The evictions are not only affecting those whose request for protection on humanitarian grounds is pending approval, but also those in possession of permits to stay, despite the law stipulating that their status should be maintained.

      The majority of migrants who have arrived in Italy in recent years have been granted humanitarian protection, with some 100,000 people estimated to hold the permit, which is valid for two years and enables them to work.

      Among those stranded in Isola Capo Rizzuto were a young couple with a five-month-old daughter, two victims of sex trafficking and a boy suffering from mental health problems.

      “When the police came to tell us that we couldn’t stay there anymore, I couldn’t believe my ears,” Blessing, a 31-year-old victim of sex trafficking from Nigeria, told the Guardian. “They took all of our belongings and escorted us out. There was a young girl in our group. This is outrageous. I have a legal permit to stay. And soon I may not have a roof over my head. I’m really frightened.”

      Blessing found temporary shelter in a Red Cross charity facility in Crotone while the rest have also been accommodated with the help of other charities and the town hall.

      “What happened here is crazy,” said Francesco Parisi, president of Crotone’s Red Cross. “You can’t just leave vulnerable people on the street. This is a violation of human rights. We are going to take care of these people now, but I hope things will change.”

      Alessia Romana, a social policies councillor in Crotone, said the local authority was trying to manage the situation.

      “The council has a moral obligation but also the juridical obligation to take care of these people,” she said. “Up until now, the system in #Crotone worked well. We managed to give reception and there wasn’t any trouble; migrants and locals co-existed.”

      A similar measure was applied in Potenza, a city in the southern region of Basilicata, with the interior ministry prefect there announcing last week that “humanitarian protection holders” must be “invited to leave” welcome centres.

      Once humanitarian protection permits are received, people are supposed to leave centres on the first rung of the migrant reception system and move to an accommodation in which they can benefit from integration programmes. But slow-moving bureaucracy and limited space means that those with permits end up staying in the first-rung centres for longer.

      A dozen or so others have been asked to leave a welcome centre in #Caserta, Campania, according to Italian press reports, while hundreds are expected to be evicted from Cara di Mineo, Europe’s second largest migrant reception centre, in the coming days.

      The number is likely to rise as the bill, which Salvini has described as a “gift to Italians”, takes effect. The loss of protection will also mean hundreds of people suddenly becoming “illegal” immigrants, with Italy’s national statistics office estimating that the decree will make 130,000 migrants illegal by 2020.

      “What we have been witnessing recently leads us to believe that there will be negative effects not only on vulnerable people, but also on Italian society generally as people enter into a formally illegal status,” said Carlotta Sami, spokeswoman for the UN refugee agency in southern Europe.

      “We fail to understand why, at this precise moment, even those individuals with legal protection have been told to leave. The decree is not retroactive, so why are they telling them to leave? Sending families away, women and children, pregnant women. It seems cruel.”

      Cities including Bologna, Turin and Rome, the latter two of which are managed by the Five Star Movement, the League’s coalition partner, have refused to implement the measures, arguing they will increase homelessness and risk social unrest.

      “We are really worried about a bill that is meant to manage immigration and increase security for citizens, but will instead create social marginality and destroy integration, while also creating social risks and the potential for radicalisation,” said Valeria Carlini, a spokesperson for the Italian Council for Refugees.

      https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/dec/07/vulnerable-migrants-made-homeless-after-italy-passes-salvini-decree

    • Migranti: le conseguenze del decreto Salvini e il nuovo “sistema parcheggio”

      Dall’entrata in vigore del provvedimento su immigrazione e asilo, decine di persone sono state espulse dai centri di accoglienza e mandate per strada, nonostante vi siano posti liberi e già finanziati. “È illegittimo. Ci troviamo di fronte a un danno per i cittadini stranieri che hanno un titolo di protezione e a una beffa per il contribuente”, denuncia Gianfranco Schiavone, vicepresidente di Asgi

      “Quello che sta avvenendo in queste settimane nel nome del decreto Salvini è gravissimo. Non solo le persone finiscono in mezzo alla strada nonostante vi siano nello SPRAR posti liberi (e quindi già finanziati), ma l’intero sistema di protezione e accoglienza è stato spezzato”. Gianfranco Schiavone, vicepresidente dell’Associazione studi giuridici sull’immigrazione (Asgi, www.asgi.it), osserva con preoccupazione gli effetti del provvedimento convertito nella legge 132/2018 (in vigore dal 4 dicembre 2018). Alcuni provvedimenti hanno preso la forma di circolari prefettizie che “invitano” i gestori dei centri di accoglienza straordinaria (CAS) a far uscire dalle strutture le persone in possesso di un permesso di soggiorno per protezione umanitaria, abrogato di fatto dalla legge. È accaduto a Potenza, a metà novembre, dove il dirigente dell’area Immigrazione ha “ricordato” anche ai gestori che il (fu) Sistema di protezione per richiedenti asilo e rifugiati (SPRAR) verrà riservato a titolari di protezione internazionale e minori stranieri non accompagnati. E basta.

      Per comprendere natura e legittimità di iniziative come quelle della prefettura di Potenza, Schiavone suggerisce di partire dal nuovo quadro disegnato dalla norma.
      GS Il decreto Salvini convertito in legge ha operato un cambiamento molto profondo del sistema nazionale pubblico. Il precedente infatti era imperniato sulla logica del Sistema di protezione per richiedenti asilo e rifugiati (SPRAR) come sistema unico sia per i richiedenti e sia per i titolari di protezione internazionale o umanitaria. Solo in caso di temporanea indisponibilità di posti nel sistema di accoglienza territoriale SPRAR e solo per il tempo strettamente necessario al trasferimento, il richiedente ospitato in un centro governativo di prima accoglienza restava ospitato in tale centro (ovvero in quelli di cui all’art. 11 del d.lgs 142/2015). La norma era pertanto chiara nel disporre che lo SPRAR fosse l’unico sistema di seconda accoglienza per tutti i richiedenti asilo che vi dovevano essere trasferiti nel più breve tempo possibile, dovendosi considerare l’accoglienza straordinaria in strutture temporanee una misura eventuale e limitata al tempo strettamente necessario al trasferimento del richiedente nelle strutture del sistema di accoglienza territoriale.

      Questa la teoria. E la pratica?
      GS Il sistema delineato dalla norma come straordinario e provvisorio nella prassi era diventato ordinario, a causa di carenze della norma ma anche per l’aumento inaspettato degli arrivi avvenuto nel 2015, 2016 e 2017. È evidente che il sistema straordinario avesse assunto grandissime dimensioni ma si trattava pur sempre di un sistema secondario e “di passaggio”. Questa situazione è stata completamente ribaltata dal decreto ora convertito in legge.

      Perché?
      GS Si torna a un sistema unico ma in una forma che non è mai esistita in Italia. Sin da quando è stato istituito un programma pubblico di protezione, questo è stato per così dire bicefalo, cioè imperniato su strutture statali e centri SPRAR, articolati grazie al coinvolgimento degli enti locali. Fino al 2015 ha governato una generale confusione, mentre tra 2015 e 2018 il previsto superamento dei CAS è rimasto in larga parte solo sulla carta. Ma, con un pizzico di ironia, oggi diremo che per fortuna il sistema almeno era bicefalo nel senso che conteneva anche spinte positive. Nella logica del Sistema di protezione c’era l’idea della gestione dell’arrivo dei richiedenti, della loro accoglienza e integrazione dentro la rete di servizi del territorio e organizzato dagli enti locali che si occupano di servizi socio-sanitari, come prassi normale per un Paese democratico.

      Che fine ha fatto quell’impostazione, pur rimasta sulla carta?
      GS È stata cancellata. Il legislatore ha previsto che non potranno più accedere allo SPRAR i richiedenti asilo, i titolari di permesso di soggiorno per motivi umanitari e i titolari di permesso di soggiorno per casi speciali (regime transitorio) rilasciato in seguito alla decisione sulla protezione umanitaria adottata dalla Commissione territoriale prima del 5 ottobre 2018, data di entrata in vigore del decreto Salvini, e infine esclude anche i titolari di permesso di soggiorno per protezione speciale, il nuovo status giuridico che in modo limitatissimo ha sostituito la protezione umanitaria. È un arretramento netto sia perché crea un esercito di nuovi esclusi sia perché indica come unica soluzione quella dei centri a diretta gestione statale. Lì non vi è nessun tipo di radicamento e collegamento con il territorio, al quale invece vengono sottratte funzioni operative e gestionali che gli sono proprie ovvero la gestione. Il sistema dunque mira di nuovo a concepire la presenza dei richiedenti asilo come un fatto di ordine pubblico, comunque straordinario, temporaneo, che prima o poi finirà. Non è scritto esplicitamente ma nella logica del legislatore la situazione è percepita come temporanea. Il che è semplicemente antistorico.

      I sostenitori della gestione statale diretta delle misure di accoglienza per i richiedenti asilo sostengono che sia la regola anche altrove.
      GS Molti altri Paesi europei hanno un ruolo diretto nella gestione del fenomeno, è vero. Ma si tratta di sistemi molto diversi dal nostro. In quei Paesi la ripartizione di competenze e funzioni tra stato centrale e poteri locali è molto diversa dal caso italiano. Nel nostro ordinamento, le funzioni amministrative oggi svolte impropriamente dallo Stato competono alle autonomie locali. Alla luce degli artt. 118 e 199 della Costituzione non si comprende infatti perché solo nel caso dell’accoglienza ordinaria di richiedenti asilo il sistema non sia gestito con strumenti ordinari in capo agli enti locali, tramite finanziamento statale. Le Prefettura non hanno e non devono avere un’organizzazione funzionale tale da diventare nuovi uffici sociali che svolgono compiti che spettano invece agli enti del territorio. Questo meccanismo è totalmente anomalo e in controtendenza rispetto a quello che è stato fatto negli ultimi anni.

      Perché il sistema è stato “spezzato”?
      GS Perché per i richiedenti asilo, inseriti in centri straordinari, l’accoglienza è minima, di bassa soglia, con servizi essenziali come vitto, alloggio, un minimo affiancamento legale e linguistico. Ma non sono affatto previste misure di integrazione sociale, di efficace apprendimento della lingua, di riqualificazione professionale. Un’accoglienza cioè che non si occupa di che cosa le persone facciano tutto il giorno, azzerando l’interazione con il territorio. Lo possiamo definire perciò come un gigantesco “sistema parcheggio” che ha costi economici e sociali altissimi.

      La propaganda dice che sarà più economico.
      GS Da un punto di vista strettamente monetario è vero, perché i servizi sono abbattuti al minimo ma è uno sguardo miope. Le ricadute si misurano su una scala più ampia: un buon sistema di accoglienza alimenta l’economia locale con un numero congruo di operatori qualificati e insegnanti. Spezzandolo, invece, vengono meno campi professionali e di sviluppo a favore di una mera guardiania richiesta alle strutture.

      Il risparmio è un’illusione?
      GS I costi di gestione dell’accoglienza, pur inizialmente ridotti saranno destinati a esplodere una volta che le persone saranno uscite dalle strutture. Per il semplice fatto che assomiglieranno a quelle appena entrate, con la differenza che quelle in uscita con poche risorse e pochi percorsi avviati saranno costrette ad avviarli dopo. È un enorme allungamento dei tempi che produce costi e un impatto molto più duro sul territorio.

      Dove dovranno essere “avviati” quei percorsi?
      GS Nell’ormai ex SPRAR, costretto a fare programmi di inserimento da zero in tempi ristretti. È un cortocircuito micidiale che produrrà persone regolarmente soggiornanti ma prive di strumenti e con drammatico impatto sui servizi sociali e quindi sui costi. Ecco perché qualunque analisi economica seria ci dice che il guadagno annunciato è in realtà un gigantesco sperpero di risorse.

      Veniamo alla circolare di Potenza. Sostiene che i titolari di protezione umanitaria presenti nelle suddette strutture debbano essere “invitati” a lasciare i centri di accoglienza e che da inizio dicembre non verranno più corrisposte somme per la relativa accoglienza. Inoltre afferma che la nuova legge escluderebbe “la possibilità di trasferimenti negli SPRAR in assenza di permesso di soggiorno per status di rifugiato o per protezione sussidiaria”. È una lettura corretta?
      GS Poco fa elencavo chi per legge non potrà più accedere allo SPRAR. Al di là di ogni considerazione sulla legittimità di quella previsione, è evidente non può applicarsi a chi sia già titolare di un permesso di soggiorno per motivi umanitari a seguito di domanda presentata prima del 5 ottobre 2018 (e relativo permesso rilasciato prima del 5 ottobre 2018) o a coloro che otterranno un permesso per “casi speciali” in quanto la loro domanda è stata esaminata con la normativa previgente ma il permesso di soggiorno è stato rilasciato dopo il 5 ottobre 2018.

      Perché?
      GS Secondo l’ASGI, coloro che avevano presentato domanda di protezione internazionale prima dell’entrata in vigore del decreto Salvini avrebbero avuto pieno diritto di accedere allo SPRAR. Ma c’era mancanza di posti disponibili. Dunque solo un fatto contingente (cioè le persistenti deficienze organizzative della pubblica amministrazione), non da loro dipendente, ha impedito che nei confronti di parte dei richiedenti asilo la norma trovasse piena e corretta applicazione. Ma ciò non significa che queste persone non abbiano diritto di accedere allo SPRAR oggi o, comunque, che alle stesse non debba essere garantito, pur dentro una struttura diversa, il godimento di diritti identici a quelli di chi era già accolto o trasferito in un centro afferente allo SPRAR.

      Tradotto: il diritto all’accesso nel sistema è sorto al momento della presentazione della domanda di protezione.
      GS Esatto. Quando cioè la norma prevedeva il passaggio allo SPRAR nel minor tempo possibile. Dunque il nuovo “regime” dovrebbe essere applicato solo alle domande presentate dopo il 5 ottobre, i cui esiti ancora non ci sono.

      Accade il contrario, però.
      GS Ciò che sta avvenendo non dovrebbe in alcun modo avvenire tanto più che abbiamo persino un sistema di protezione sottodimensionato, con posti liberi nel sistema SPRAR. Significa che abbiamo persone in strada nonostante posti liberi e finanziati. Quindi ci troviamo di fronte a un danno per i cittadini stranieri che hanno un titolo di protezione e a una beffa per il contribuente, forse anche simpatizzante della nuova norma, che immagina maggior rigore o controllo e invece misurerà un peggioramento della qualità, dei servizi nonché l’aumento della spesa.

      Il ministero dell’Interno sostiene però che anche in precedenza i migranti uscissero dai centri di accoglienza straordinaria.
      GS Manca un piccolo dettaglio: uscivano dai CAS e per legge entravano nello SPRAR.

      Quali scenari si profilano?
      GS È necessario che gli interessati, i richiedenti e i beneficiari, sostenuti da enti che non vogliano essere solamente enti gestori ma anche enti di tutela, avviino una serie di ricorsi mirati a rivendicare la corretta attuazione della legge, con la cessazione immediata di allontanamenti illegittimi dai centri. I quali avvengono sempre in modo informale e totalmente scorretto, con l’ente pubblico che si libera della responsabilità di comunicare un provvedimento che non esiste neppure e demanda lo sgradevole compito all’ente gestore. E così il migrante si ritrova per la strada senza nemmeno un provvedimento da impugnare ma solo un rifiuto dell’ingresso nello SPRAR fatto in forma orale da un operatore sociale o figure assimilabili.

      https://altreconomia.it/conseguenze-decreto-salvini

    • Italie : des migrants hébergés en centre d’accueil jetés à la rue après le « décret Salvini »

      Suite à l’adoption d’un décret-loi durcissant l’immigration en Italie, vingt-quatre migrants bénéficiant d’un « titre de séjour humanitaire » ont été expulsés d’un centre d’accueil en Calabre, dans le sud de l’Italie. Ce statut ne permet plus d’accéder à un centre d’hébergement. Les associations s’alarment et cherchent des solutions d’urgence.

      En Calabre, dans le sud de l’Italie, le décret anti-immigration de Matteo Salvini, adopté le 28 novembre, a été rapidement appliqué. Deux jours après, 24 migrants ont été expulsés de leur centre d’accueil (CARA d’Isola Capo Rizzuto) à la demande de la préfecture de Crotone, en Italie du sud. Ils ne bénéficiaient plus d’un droit au logement conformément au décret-loi. Pourquoi ? Parce que, selon la nouvelle loi, leur « titre de séjour humanitaire » n’existe plus et ne leur donne plus accès à un toit.

      Le décret du Premier ministre italien supprime en effet le « titre de séjour humanitaire », valable deux ans. Il est désormais remplacé par d’autres permis comme celui de « protection spéciale », d’une durée d’un an, ou « catastrophe naturelle dans le pays d’origine », d’une durée de six mois.

      >> À lire : « Que contient le décret anti-immigration adopté en Italie ? »

      La protection humanitaire était généralement accordée aux personnes qui n’étaient pas éligibles au statut de réfugié mais qui ne pouvaient pas être renvoyées chez elles pour des raisons de sécurité - cela concernait par exemple les homosexuels fuyant des pays aux lois répressives à l’encontre de leur communauté. Au total en 2017, 25 % des demandeurs d’asile en Italie ont reçu un permis de séjour humanitaire, soit plus de 20 000 personnes.

      « Ils se retrouvent sans solution »

      Avec la nouvelle loi, les centres d’accueil sont désormais réservés aux seuls personnes ayant le statut de réfugié et aux mineurs non accompagnés. Autrement dit, les migrants anciennement sous protection humanitaire ne pourront plus y avoir accès, même avec leur nouveau statut.

      « Ces 24 personnes ont reçu un titre de séjour régulier en Italie, mais leur prise en charge dans la première phase d’accueil (CARA) a expiré. Ils se retrouvent donc sans solution », précise à InfoMigrants le père Rino Le Pera, directeur du réseau Caritas dans la province de Crotone.

      Parmi les expulsés, il déplore la présence « d’une famille avec une petite fille de 6 mois (voir photo ci-dessous), d’une jeune femme victime d’exploitation sexuelle, d’une autre ayant subi des violences physiques et d’un homme souffrant de problèmes de santé mentale ».

      « Ce qui se passe ici est fou », dénonce de son côté Franceso Parisi, président de la Croix-Rouge à Crotone, interrogé par le quotidien britannique The Guardian. « Vous ne pouvez pas laisser des personnes vulnérables à la rue. C’est une violation des droits de l’Homme ».

      Prévenus à l’avance de l’expulsion, Caritas et la Croix-Rouge italienne ont réussi à se rendre au CARA d’Isola Capo Rizzuto pour proposer une solution d’hébergement à la famille concernée ainsi qu’aux deux femmes victimes de violences. Quatre migrants ont également été accueillis par une coopérative locale. « Pour ce qui est des autres, nous pensons qu’ils ont pu reprendre la route, ou rejoindre le camp de fortune situé au nord de Crotone, où près d’une centaine de personnes vivent dans des conditions extrêmement précaires sous des tentes », assure le père Rino Le Pera qui s’étonne de la « vitesse » à laquelle les autorités ont mis en oeuvre les nouvelles mesures.

      Les prêtres disposés à « ouvrir les portes des églises »

      « Nous essayons de nous préparer car d’autres expulsions devraient arriver, mais nous ne savons pas quand ce sera, ni combien de personnes exactement vont être concernées », poursuit-il. À Crotone, Caritas a déjà préparé un dortoir pouvant accueillir 20 personnes, une solution « qui ne sera sûrement pas suffisante » concède son directeur.

      Selon l’agence de presse italienne ANSA, environ 200 personnes devraient à leur tour être expulsées du centre d’Isola Capo Rizzuto. À Potenza, dans la région de la Basilicate, le préfet a annoncé au début du mois que les « détenteurs d’une protection humanitaire » devaient être « invités à quitter » les centres d’accueil, rapporte le Guardian. La presse italienne indique encore qu’une dizaine de migrants a reçu l’ordre de quitter leur centre d’accueil à Caserta, en Campagnie. Dans les prochains jours, des centaines de personnes devraient également quitter le CARA de Mineo, en Sicile, le deuxième plus grand centre d’accueil pour migrants en Europe.

      Face à cette situation alarmante, les prêtres italiens ont déclaré la semaine dernière être disposés à « ouvrir les portes des églises de chaque paroisse » aux personnes expulsées des centres d’accueil.

      http://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/13814/italie-des-migrants-heberges-en-centre-d-accueil-jetes-a-la-rue-apres-

    • Migranti, riforma accoglienza: «In 120 mila destinati a diventare irregolari»

      Fotografa le conseguenze della riforma dell’accoglienza il nuovo report di Oxfam. «Oltre 12 mila migranti con permesso di soggiorno rischiano di restare in strada nelle prossime settimane». L’impatto sui bilanci comunali sarà di 280 milioni euro annui (stima Anci). Le testimonianze.

      Oltre 12 mila migranti vulnerabili, in regola con il permesso di soggiorno, rischiano di restare in strada nelle prossime settimane, mentre nei prossimi 2 anni circa 120 mila persone sono destinate a scivolare nell’irregolarità, tra permessi per motivi umanitari non rinnovati (circa 32.750), non rilasciati (27.300), e pratiche arretrate che saranno esaminate dalle Commissioni Territoriali secondo le nuove disposizioni di legge (70 mila). Fotografia le conseguenze della riforma del sistema di accoglienza il report I sommersi e i salvati della protezione umanitaria, diffuso oggi da Oxfam, in occasione della Giornata internazionale dei diritti dei migranti, attraverso le testimonianze di chi da un giorno all’altro si sta vedendo negare il diritto all’accoglienza e all’integrazione.

      A subire le conseguenze più gravi sono neo-maggiorenni, madri con bimbi piccoli, persone in fuga dall’orrore di guerre, persecuzioni e torture che saranno semplicemente tagliate fuori dal sistema di accoglienza, sottolineano gli osservatoi. «Con un futuro di fronte che, nella migliore delle ipotesi, si presenta pieno di incognite e un percorso di integrazione lasciato a metà. Vittime quasi sempre due volte della disumanità delle politiche migratorie adottate dall’Italia e dall’Europa: prima con l’accordo Italia – Libia e adesso con le politiche introdotte dal Governo». “Su 18mila permessi per protezione umanitaria concessi da gennaio a settembre nel nostro paese, solo una minoranza potrà continuare a seguire un percorso di integrazione virtuoso all’interno dei centri Sprar – ha detto Giulia Capitani, policy advisor per la crisi migratoria di Oxfam Italia - Le Prefetture di tutta Italia nei giorni scorsi hanno inviato agli enti gestori dei Centri di Accoglienza Straordinaria disposizioni per la cessazione immediata dell’accoglienza dei titolari di protezione umanitaria. Migranti vulnerabili sono stati semplicemente gettati in strada, in pieno inverno, senza nessun riguardo per la loro condizione e in totale assenza di soluzioni alternative. Una situazione incredibile da tutti i punti di vista. Ne è riprova la notizia, di queste ore, di una parziale e frettolosa retromarcia del Governo che ha dato “indicazioni verbali” ai Prefetti di sospendere momentaneamente le revoche dell’accoglienza e di attendere una circolare ministeriale in proposito”.

      Oxfam ricorda inoltre che non si stanno interrompendo gli arrivi nel nostro paese, anche in inverno: «Oltre 2 mila da inizio ottobre ad oggi. Persone che, in un sistema di accoglienza che privilegia la gestione puramente emergenziale, andranno ad aggravare la situazione». “Il paradosso è che la nuova legge non aumenterà la sicurezza, né produrrà un risparmio per le casse dello Stato. - sottolinea Alessandro Bechini, direttore dei programmi in Italia di Oxfam - Buttando in strada migliaia di persone si pongono le basi per un drammatico incremento del conflitto sociale, della marginalità, del risentimento, della povertà. Si darà nuova linfa al lavoro nero e alla criminalità organizzata, che avrà gioco facile nel reclutare i più disperati. Allo stesso tempo l’aumento del disagio avrà un enorme impatto sui bilanci comunali, stimato da Anci in ben 280 milioni euro annui. Ebbene di fronte a tutto questo chiediamo con forza di riconsiderare l’approccio definito nella riforma, che di fatto nega i diritti delle persone più deboli, tradendo lo spirito della nostra Costituzione, della Dichiarazione universale dei diritti umani, per la quale si sono accese migliaia di fiaccole in tutta Italia solo qualche giorno fa”.

      Il rapporto raccoglie diverse videotestimonianze. Come quella di Ibrahim Salifu, richiedente asilo accolto da Oxfam in un Centro di accoglienza straordinaria (Cas). Ricorda gli abusi subiti per 7 anni nell’inferno libico: “Quando sono arrivato in Libia sono stato rapito e portato in prigione. Lì le persone ogni giorno vengono picchiate e molti sono stati uccisi davanti ai miei occhi solo perché chiedevano di essere pagati per il lavoro che avevano svolto”. Per i traumi e gli abusi fisici e psicologici di cui è stato vittima, a Ibrahim è stata da poco riconosciuta la protezione umanitaria, ma dopo il 5 ottobre ossia dopo l’entrata in vigore del Decreto immigrazione e sicurezza, da poco convertito in legge: «Rischia nel prossimo futuro di ritrovarsi per strada, perché non potrà più entrare in un Centro di protezione per richiedenti asilo e rifugiati (Sprar), dove avrebbe dovuto concludere il suo percorso di integrazione».
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sbFu4tltStg

      E’ inmvece la storia di un’accoglienza forse ancora possibile quella di Beauty Isimhenmhen. “Non mi aspettavo di sopravvivere, né che la mia bambina si salvasse. Per questo l’ho chiamata Miracle…che vuole dire miracolo”. La mamma di 25 anni costretta a fuggire dalle persecuzioni in Nigeria mentre era incinta, ricorda la paura di non farcela, durante il suo viaggio verso l’Italia e l’Europa. La tragedia del suo passaggio obbligato in Libia, durante cui ha perso il marito ed è rimasta sola. Arrivata in Italia al nono mese di gravidanza è riuscita a salvare sua figlia appena in tempo. Oggi sta imparando un lavoro, la lingua, ma famiglie come la sua hanno ancora la possibilità di essere accolte nei centri Sprar, solo perché hanno ottenuto il trasferimento dal Cas in cui si trovavano prima del 5 ottobre, data in cui è entrato in vigore il Decreto immigrazione e sicurezza.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IUvakCk1w24

      “È un’assurda lotteria dell’accoglienza, che la nuova legge ha aggravato a dismisura. Non si tiene più conto della condizione dei richiedenti asilo, del loro percorso di integrazione. – sottolinea Bechini – Ci sono capitati casi di persone in grande difficoltà – famiglie con bambini piccoli, vittime di torture, ragazzi e ragazze appena maggiorenni - a cui dopo il riconoscimento dello stato di protezione umanitaria è stata revocata la possibilità di entrare nei centri SPRAR, il giorno stesso dell’entrata in vigore del Decreto. Cosa facciamo con queste persone? Le buttiamo per strada? Per noi operatori del settore è una decisione impossibile da prendere”.

      http://www.redattoresociale.it/Notiziario/Articolo/612325/Migranti-riforma-accoglienza-In-120-mila-destinati-a-diventare-irre

    • En supprimant les « titres de séjour humanitaires », Salvini contraint des réfugiés à retourner dans l’illégalité

      Depuis l’adoption du décret-loi durcissant la politique migratoire en Italie, des milliers de migrants devraient perdre leur statut de "protection humanitaire", qui leur permettait de rester légalement en Italie. Des milliers de personnes légales risquent de se retrouver à nouveau sans-papiers, sans travail.

      Le ministre de l’Intérieur et vice-Premier ministre Matteo Salvini, également à la tête de la Ligue (extrême droite) a fait adopter fin novembre, un décret-loi dont la principale mesure est d’abolir les permis de séjour humanitaires. Ce statut était jusque-là accordé aux personnes vulnérables, familles ou femmes seules avec enfants, victimes de traumatismes pendant leur périple vers l’Italie.

      Les conséquences sont graves, s’alarment les ONG d’aide aux migrants. Depuis 2008, plus de 120 000 personnes en ont bénéficié. "Et 40 000 personnes depuis deux ans", rappelle Marine de Haas de la Cimade. Ce statut était valable deux ans et renouvelable.

      Comment la suppression de ces titres de séjour va-t-elle fonctionner ? "C’est au moment de renouveler leur permis humanitaire que les migrants vont perdre leur ‘régularité’ », rappelle Marine de Haas. Les primo-arrivants, eux, n’en bénéficieront plus. "En perdant ce statut légal, beaucoup vont perdre leur logement" et leur accès au marché du travail.

      Ces dernières années et jusqu’en août, les commissions d’asile ont accordé en moyenne le permis humanitaire à 25% des demandeurs. Suite à des consignes de fermeté de Matteo Salvini, elles ont anticipé la fin des permis humanitaires, qui sont passés à 17% en septembre, 13% en octobre et 5% seulement en novembre.

      Expulsion des personnes en situation irrégulière

      Conséquence direct de la perte de ce statut : l’expulsion des centres d’accueil. Le 30 novembre, 24 migrants ont en effet été expulsés de leur structure d’hébergement d’urgence (CARA d’Isola Capo Rizzuto) à la demande de la préfecture de Crotone. "Les personnes qui avaient ce statut humanitaire perdent le droit d’aller dans les centres d’accueil. Elles repassent en situation irrégulière", explique Marine de Haas.

      >> À relire : "En Italie, des migrants hébergés en centre d’accueil jetés à la rue après le ’décret Salvini’"

      Matteo Salvini considère que ces personnes ne sont pas des ‘réfugiés’, "qu’elles doivent être expulsées", précise de son côté Eleonora Camilli, journaliste italienne, spécialiste de l’immigration, contactée par InfoMigrants.

      Pour rester légalement en Italie, les migrants devraient convertir leur "statut humanitaire" en d’autres titres de séjour (séjour pour motif de travail par exemple), une procédure particulièrement complexe. "Ils peuvent aussi demander l’asile, mais vu le contexte politique, peu de dossiers ont de chances d’aboutir", précise Eleonora Camilli, la journaliste italienne.

      La Cimade dénonce "l’hypocrisie" de Matteo Salvini

      La Cimade et la journaliste italienne sont sceptiques face aux résultats de cette politique migratoire. "Les personnes en situation irrégulière ne vont pas être toutes renvoyées" précise encore Eleonora Camilli. "L’Italie n’a pas toujours d’accords de rapatriement avec des pays tiers". En effet, l’Italie dispose d’accords bilatéraux avec 24 pays non-européens pour rapatrier les migrants, mais beaucoup refusent de les reconnaître comme leur concitoyens et refusent de les ré-accepter sur leur territoire. Conséquence : l’Italie n’a procédé qu’à 6 514 reconduites à la frontière en 2017 et il n’est pas garanti que ce chiffre soit atteint cette année.

      Les associations craignent donc une hausse de la clandestinité sur le sol italien. Beaucoup de migrants installés depuis plusieurs mois voire plusieurs années resteront sans doute en Italie, sans papiers. "Nous dénonçons l’hypocrisie de cette politique qui ‘invisibilise’ les migrants, qui les pousse à retourner dans la clandestinité, qui les pousse à se précariser durement", ajoute Marine de Haas.

      >> À relire : "Le bon temps pour les clandestins est fini", affirme Matteo Salvini

      Des associations françaises, comme Tous migrants, redoutent, elles, un pic de départ vers les pays limitrophes de l’Italie. "On s’attend à des arrivées prochaines via les Alpes", a expliqué Michel Rousseau, porte-parole de l’association de Briançon, ville non loin de la frontière italienne. Un avis partagé par Rafael Flichman, de la Cimade. "Des personnes avec un titre humanitaire qui expire dans quelques jours ou quelques mois peuvent décider de partir et de prendre la route vers la France".

      Au total, entre les permis actuels qui ne seront pas renouvelés et ceux qui ne seront plus accordés, le chiffre de "100 000 clandestins en plus est une estimation basse", explique Valeria Carlini, porte-parole du Conseil italien pour les réfugiés (CIR).


      http://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/13986/en-supprimant-les-titres-de-sejour-humanitaires-salvini-contraint-des-

    • Cambiamenti del “decreto sicurezza e immigrazione”

      Quali sono i cambiamenti principali del decreto sicurezza? Cosa cambierà nel mondo dell’accoglienza? Quali saranno le conseguenze? Le risposte nella nuova infografica di Carta di Roma.

      Approvato in via definitiva alle fine di novembre, il cosiddetto “decreto sicurezza” produce e produrrà i suoi effetti su tutta la filiera dell’immigrazione in Italia: dall’identificazione all’accoglienza, dalle procedure per la protezione internazionale all’integrazione. Nell’infografica che pubblichiamo oggi abbiamo riassunto alcuni punti fondamentali.

      Fine dell’“umanitaria”

      Senza addentrasi troppo nell’analisi della norma, alcuni punti importanti si possono segnalare. Fino all’autunno 2018 l’Italia poteva riconoscere 3 tipi di protezione a chi ne facesse richieste: status di rifugiato, protezione sussidiaria e umanitaria (qui ne abbiamo dato una sintetica descrizione). Distribuite così a fine novembre: 6467 status di rifugiato, 3888 protezione sussidiaria e 19841 protezione umanitaria. Oggi, la situazione è cambiata.

      Chi ha presentato domanda di protezione internazionale DOPO il 5 ottobre ha due esiti possibili davanti a sé: 1. Se viene riconosciuto il rischio di persecuzione, e gli altri requisiti per lo status di rifugiato, oppure tortura, trattamento inumano e degradante, pena di morte o rischi legati a violenza generalizzata, allora riceverà il permesso per protezione internazionale. 2. E chi godeva della protezione umanitaria in quella fatidica data? Da una parte potrà convertire il permesso in uno per lavoro, altrimenti dovrà tornare davanti a una commissione territoriale per venire valutato secondo la nuova norma. 3. Può ottenere un permesso per casi speciali, per esempio per calamità naturali, per valore civile, per cure mediche, ecc.

      Aumentano gli irregolari?

      Secondo molti osservatori, il cambiamento della normativa avrà l’effetto di aumentare il numero degli irregolari presenti in Italia. Secondo le stime di Matteo Villa, analista dell’Ispi, in due anni e mezzo questi potrebbero crescere fino a quasi 140mila, tra i cosiddetti “diniegati” – coloro che in virtù della nuova legge non hanno ricevuto alcun tipo di protezione – e coloro che non hanno ottenuto il rinnovo in virtù delle modifiche alla norma. In totale 137mila migranti che dal giugno 2018 al dicembre 2020 sarebbero a spasso in Italia in attesa di un rimpatrio che di fatto è impraticabile senza gli accordi necessari con i paesi di provenienza.

      «Il rischio di un’esplosione del numero degli irregolari è concreto, tuttavia io invito a essere molto cauti con le stime» nota Francesco Di Pietro, avvocato e membro dell’Associazione per gli studi giuridici sull’immigrazione. «La situazione è in evoluzione, leggiamo sui giornali di questi giorni di “stop alle espulsioni” e le cronache riportano i casi di famiglie lasciate per strada che devono essere tutelate e dovranno in qualche modo poter rientrare in qualche programma di protezione». È il caso dei migranti del Cara di Mineo o di Crotone e di molte famiglie ospitate in varie regioni italiane che sarebbero dovute uscire dalle strutture di accoglienza e che, per ora, hanno visto bloccato il provvedimento.

      C’è un altro aspetto che dovrebbe calmierare, almeno parzialmente, l’aumento di irregolari. Coloro che hanno in mano il permesso umanitario hanno diritto a convertire quel permesso in uno di lavoro. «Tuttavia – nota Di Pietro – il rischio molto concreto con la nuova normativa è che si possa creare un mercato di permessi di lavoro fittizi, finte occupazioni che garantirebbero la permanenza nel nostro paese».

      Cambiano gli Sprar

      Il sistema Sprar (Sistema di protezione per richiedenti asilo e rifugiati) è stato in questi anni un fiore all’occhiello dell’accoglienza in Italia. Nel luglio 2018 aveva 35.881 posti assegnati (dai 25 in Valle d’Aosta agli oltre 4mila del Lazio e ai quasi 5mila della Sicilia) in 654 comuni italiani pari a 877 progetti in corso. Con la nuova norma firmata Salvini le cose cambiano. Con la scomparsa della protezione umanitaria, gli ospiti dei piccoli centri di accoglienza saranno solo i titolari di protezione internazionale (quindi asilo e sussidiaria) e i minori non accompagnati. Quindi niente più richiedenti asilo che rimarranno nei Cara e nei Cas fino alla decisione.

      https://www.cartadiroma.org/news/in-evidenza/cambiamenti-del-decreto-sicurezza-e-immigrazione/amp/?__twitter_impression=true

    • No way back: New law adds pressure on asylum seekers in Italy

      Over the last five years, some two million migrants and refugees have made it from the north coast of Africa by sea to the perceived promise and safety of Europe. Almost 650,000 people have survived the longest, most dangerous crossing via the central Mediterranean to Italy.
      Saidykhan fled difficult conditions in his home country in 2016, hoping to find a better life in Italy. But things have not been easy. The recent repeal of two-year “humanitarian protection” status for a broad class of asylum seekers leaves people like him even more vulnerable.
      From 2015 to 2017, almost 26,000 Gambians sought asylum in Italy. Under the old law, those who didn’t immediately qualify for asylum could still stay in Italy for a certain period and receive some social benefits. But the rules were tightened late last year to include only victims of human trafficking, domestic violence, and other very specific criteria.

      Prominent Italians, including the mayors of Milan and Naples, have publicly opposed the new measures on ethical grounds, while the governors of Tuscany and Piedmont have said they will challenge them in court.

      But dozens of migrants and asylum seekers have already been evicted from state-organised housing, and thousands more remain concerned. Unwilling to return home and unable to build a future in Italy, they fear they may end up on the street with no access to services or support.

      https://www.irinnews.org/video/2019/01/08/no-way-back-new-law-adds-pressure-asylum-seekers-italy

    • En supprimant les « titres de séjour humanitaires », Salvini contraint des réfugiés à retourner dans l’illégalité

      Depuis l’adoption du décret-loi durcissant la politique migratoire en Italie, des milliers de migrants devraient perdre leur statut de "protection humanitaire", qui leur permettait de rester légalement en Italie. Des milliers de personnes légales risquent de se retrouver à nouveau sans-papiers, sans travail.

      Le ministre de l’Intérieur et vice-Premier ministre Matteo Salvini, également à la tête de la Ligue (extrême droite) a fait adopter fin novembre, un décret-loi dont la principale mesure est d’abolir les permis de séjour humanitaires. Ce statut était jusque-là accordé aux personnes vulnérables, familles ou femmes seules avec enfants, victimes de traumatismes pendant leur périple vers l’Italie.

      Les conséquences sont graves, s’alarment les ONG d’aide aux migrants. Depuis 2008, plus de 120 000 personnes en ont bénéficié. "Et 40 000 personnes depuis deux ans", rappelle Marine de Haas de la Cimade. Ce statut était valable deux ans et renouvelable.

      Comment la suppression de ces titres de séjour va-t-elle fonctionner ? "C’est au moment de renouveler leur permis humanitaire que les migrants vont perdre leur ‘régularité’ », rappelle Marine de Haas. Les primo-arrivants, eux, n’en bénéficieront plus. "En perdant ce statut légal, beaucoup vont perdre leur logement" et leur accès au marché du travail.

      Ces dernières années et jusqu’en août, les commissions d’asile ont accordé en moyenne le permis humanitaire à 25% des demandeurs. Suite à des consignes de fermeté de Matteo Salvini, elles ont anticipé la fin des permis humanitaires, qui sont passés à 17% en septembre, 13% en octobre et 5% seulement en novembre.

      Expulsion des personnes en situation irrégulière

      Conséquence direct de la perte de ce statut : l’expulsion des centres d’accueil. Le 30 novembre, 24 migrants ont en effet été expulsés de leur structure d’hébergement d’urgence (CARA d’Isola Capo Rizzuto) à la demande de la préfecture de Crotone. "Les personnes qui avaient ce statut humanitaire perdent le droit d’aller dans les centres d’accueil. Elles repassent en situation irrégulière", explique Marine de Haas.

      >> À relire : "En Italie, des migrants hébergés en centre d’accueil jetés à la rue après le ’décret Salvini’"

      Matteo Salvini considère que ces personnes ne sont pas des ‘réfugiés’, "qu’elles doivent être expulsées", précise de son côté Eleonora Camilli, journaliste italienne, spécialiste de l’immigration, contactée par InfoMigrants.

      Pour rester légalement en Italie, les migrants devraient convertir leur "statut humanitaire" en d’autres titres de séjour (séjour pour motif de travail par exemple), une procédure particulièrement complexe. "Ils peuvent aussi demander l’asile, mais vu le contexte politique, peu de dossiers ont de chances d’aboutir", précise Eleonora Camilli, la journaliste italienne.

      La Cimade dénonce "l’hypocrisie" de Matteo Salvini

      La Cimade et la journaliste italienne sont sceptiques face aux résultats de cette politique migratoire. "Les personnes en situation irrégulière ne vont pas être toutes renvoyées" précise encore Eleonora Camilli. "L’Italie n’a pas toujours d’accords de rapatriement avec des pays tiers". En effet, l’Italie dispose d’accords bilatéraux avec 24 pays non-européens pour rapatrier les migrants, mais beaucoup refusent de les reconnaître comme leur concitoyens et refusent de les ré-accepter sur leur territoire. Conséquence : l’Italie n’a procédé qu’à 6 514 reconduites à la frontière en 2017 et il n’est pas garanti que ce chiffre soit atteint cette année.

      Les associations craignent donc une hausse de la clandestinité sur le sol italien. Beaucoup de migrants installés depuis plusieurs mois voire plusieurs années resteront sans doute en Italie, sans papiers. "Nous dénonçons l’hypocrisie de cette politique qui ‘invisibilise’ les migrants, qui les pousse à retourner dans la clandestinité, qui les pousse à se précariser durement", ajoute Marine de Haas.

      >> À relire : "Le bon temps pour les clandestins est fini", affirme Matteo Salvini

      Des associations françaises, comme Tous migrants, redoutent, elles, un pic de départ vers les pays limitrophes de l’Italie. "On s’attend à des arrivées prochaines via les Alpes", a expliqué Michel Rousseau, porte-parole de l’association de Briançon, ville non loin de la frontière italienne. Un avis partagé par Rafael Flichman, de la Cimade. "Des personnes avec un titre humanitaire qui expire dans quelques jours ou quelques mois peuvent décider de partir et de prendre la route vers la France".

      Au total, entre les permis actuels qui ne seront pas renouvelés et ceux qui ne seront plus accordés, le chiffre de "100 000 clandestins en plus est une estimation basse", explique Valeria Carlini, porte-parole du Conseil italien pour les réfugiés (CIR).

      http://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/13986/en-supprimant-les-titres-de-sejour-humanitaires-salvini-contraint-des-

    • GDB: Profughi, a #Brescia 1300 “in strada” e 250 giovani licenziati

      “Insieme a queste persone alle quali non verrà riconosciuta alcuna forma di protezione – il permesso umanitario, prima dell’entrata in vigore della legge, veniva rilasciato al 40% circa dei richiedenti – rimarranno senza lavoro anche 250 operatori dei Cas e degli Sprar. Italiani giovani e qualificati.
      Le 118 persone che vengono espulse in questi giorni dai Centri di accoglienza straordinaria sono in possesso di un permesso di soggiorno umanitario, che può essere convertito in permesso di soggiorno per lavoro. E proprio in questi giorni, come funghi, sono spuntati sedicenti datori di lavoro che, in ambio di denaro – dai 400 ai mille euro – stipulano falsi contratti di lavoro. La questura, tuttavia, per convertire il permesso, verifica che esista un contratto reale e, non trovandolo, ovviamente non procede alla conversione. Per i migranti, la beffa è doppia.
      Per “attenuare l’impatto sociale della legge sicurezza” alcuni rappresentanti delle realtà che nella nostra provincia in questi anni si sono occupati di accoglienza di richiedenti asilo e rifugiati, sia nell’ambito dei progetti Sprar sia nella gestione dei Cas stanno valutando un coordinamento tra società civile ed enti locali.”

      http://www.adl-zavidovici.eu/profughi-brescia-strada

    • Italy evicts more than 500 people from refugee centre

      Move is first major eviction since rightwing government enacted hardline migration law.
      A further 75 were removed on Wednesday, with the remaining 430 to be evicted before the centre’s closure on 31 January.


      https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/jan/23/italy-evicts-more-than-500-people-refugee-centre-near-rome

      #Castelnuovo_di_Porto

    • Uncertain future for refugees after Italy shuts asylum centre

      Funding cuts led to imminent closure of Italy’s second-largest centre for asylum seekers amid local protests.

      The eviction of refugees from Italy’s second-largest centre for asylum seekers has continued for a second day amid protests from locals and opposition politicians over the way the transfers are being carried out.

      The reception centre is located in Castelnuovo di Porto, a town near Rome, and the vast majority of the 540 people there are asylum seekers, including women and children.

      The centre, chosen by the pope in 2016 for the traditional Holy Thursday mass, in which the pontiff performs a foot-washing ceremony, is due to close by the end of the month following funding cuts.

      The evictions began on Tuesday when 30 people were taken away and another 75, including 10 women, were seen getting on buses on Wednesday without any knowledge of where they were headed.

      According to UN’s refugee agency, UNHCR, at least 10 people who hold “humanitarian protection” permits will be left without a roof over their heads.

      The recently passed “Salvini law” cracks down on asylum rights by abolishing such permits - issued to people who did not qualify for refugee status but were deemed as vulnerable - and barring those who hold them from receiving aid.

      The law is set to leave thousands of people undocumented and without rights in the next two years.

      Other centres across Italy are set to close in the coming months as well, including Italy’s largest in Mineo, Sicily.

      Observers have criticised the way the government decided to carry out the transfers by sending in the police and the army with barely 48 hours of notice, and without prior coordination with the local authorities or the cooperative running the centre.

      The transfers to other areas of the country will inevitably disrupt the lives of asylum seekers, some of whom have lived in Castelnuovo for over a year.

      They will also affect asylum applications that must be reviewed by local commissions.

      “Fourteen children will have to interrupt their school year,” UNHCR’s spokesperson for southern Europe, Carlotta Sami, told Al Jazeera.

      “There’s no clarity on where they will be taken and what will happen to hundreds of asylum applications that were being examined by the local commission.”

      More than 100 people, who were employed at the centre as language teachers or psychologists, are also set to lose their jobs.

      The centre had been open for over a decade, hosting at one stage up to 1,000 people.

      “The centre had become an integral part of Castelnuovo di Porto,” the town’s mayor, Riccardo Travaglini, told a local newspaper.

      “I’m not saying the centre shouldn’t be closed, but it should have been coordinated. Castelnuovo has been at the forefront of this emergency for 10 years, 8,000 people came through here. Some respect was due to a community that has done much not only for Italy, but for Europe as well.”

      Trade unions have scheduled protests to take place on Thursday. Some locals, including the town’s mayor, took part in a silent march on Tuesday to protest the closure of what many considered a model centre.

      Italy’s interior minister and Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini defended the eviction, arguing that a drop in arrivals had freed places in other centres across the country.

      “It is a question of common sense and good administration that will save Italians six million euros a year, without taking away the rights of anyone,” Salvini told a local radio station.

      “All the guests who have the right to, will be transferred with as much generosity and with as many rights to other structures,” he said in a Facebook Live video.


      https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/01/uncertain-future-refugees-italy-shuts-asylum-centre-190123182046502.html

    • Chiusura del C.A.R.A. di Castelnuovo di Porto: il commento del Tavolo asilo

      Con un comunicato ufficiale le organizzazioni che compongono il Tavolo Asilo nazionale esprimono sconcerto e indignazione per la modalità con cui è gestita la chiusura del secondo centro più grande d’Italia.

      Tra i punti evidenziati nella nota stampa, il “brevissimo preavviso” dato agli oltre 300 persone ospiti del centro, tra cui 14 minorenni.

      I primi trasferimenti fuori regione, iniziati il 22 gennaio, non prevedono dei percorsi d’inclusione, scolastici, lavorativi e di formazione già intrapresi. Tra gli ospiti del centro, inoltre, ci sono uomini e donne ai quali, a causa del trasferimento, sarà impedito di proseguire i percorsi di riabilitazione e di cura per le violenze subite in Libia.

      Un altro punto critico legato alla decisione di chiudere il centro di Castelnuovo è legato all’accoglienza: sono circa 150 i titolari di permesso di soggiorno per motivi umanitari ai quali la legge non garantisce alcuna soluzione alternativa e che rischiano di finire nella marginalità, lasciati per strada, tra questi diversi vulnerabili. Spiace costatare che ancora una volta non è tenuto in alcuna considerazione l’interesse delle persone e delle comunità coinvolte.

      “Facciamo appello al Presidente del Consiglio, al Governo e al Parlamento, oltre che alle istituzioni locali – conclude il comunicato – affinché sia garantita a tutte le persone coinvolte una valutazione individuale dei percorsi di integrazione avviati ai fini del trasferimento in strutture nel territorio e non fuori regione; che sia garantita a tutti i minorenni iscritti a scuola la continuità del percorso di istruzione e che nessuno sia lasciato per strada“.

      Amnesty International Italia aderisce al Tavolo asilo nazionale insieme a: A Buon Diritto, ACLI, ActionAid, ARCI, ASGI, Associazione Papa Giovanni XXIII, Casa dei Diritti Sociali, Centro Astalli, CIR, CNCA, Comunità di Sant’Egidio, Emergency, Federazione Chiese Evangeliche in Italia, Intersos, Legambiente, Mèdicins du Monde Missione Italia, Medici per i Diritti Umani, Medici Senza Frontiere, Oxfam Italia, Save the Children, Senza Confine del Tavolo Asilo Nazionale.

      https://www.amnesty.it/chiusura-del-c-r-castelnuovo-porto-commento-del-tavolo-asilo

    • Castelnuovo di Porto, «non difendiamo i grandi centri, ma così è inumano»

      Secondo giorno di trasferimenti. Tensione nella mattinata quando la parlamentare Rossella Muroni ha bloccato uno dei pullman. Il sindaco: «Notizie solo dalla stampa, nessuna comunicazione ufficiale. Noi per primi abbiamo chiesto superamento del Cara ma non accettiamo queste modalità». Il parroco: «Poco dignitoso, si pensa ai soldi e non alle persone»

      ROMA - Lamin ha 24 anni e arriva dal Gambia. Da due anni vive nel Cara di Castelnuovo di Porto, ha frequentato un corso sui materiali edili a basso impatto ambientale e iniziato uno stage in una fabbrica a Roma. Domani un pullman, che lo porterà nelle Marche, interromperà questo percorso: “Non so niente di più, non mi hanno detto niente”, racconta da dietro la rete di recinzione che separa gli ospiti di Castelnuovo di Porto dai giornalisti, arrivati per raccontare il secondo giorno di trasferimenti voluti da Viminale, da uno dei Cara più grandi in Italia. Lamin, saluta gli amici che salgono sul pullman che partirà oggi con destinzaione Ancona, poi torna verso la rete: “Mi dispiace, eravamo diventati amici. E’ tutto molto triste”.

      I trasferimenti sono iniziati ieri e continueranno per tutta la settimana. Stamattina uno dei pullman con 30 persone a bordo è stato fermato dalla parlamentare di Leu, Rossella Muroni: “Voglio sapere dove vanno queste persone, se sono state prese in considerazione le loro esigenze”, ha detto mettendosi davanti il mezzo, poco dopo la partenza. Il pullman è rientrato nel centro, tra gli applausi delle persone presenti. Poi, dopo circa un’ora è ripartito. “Ho chiesto solo di sapere la destinazione delle persone: da quanto ci è stato detto alla cooperativa è stata fatta solo una suddivisione numerica, ma qui ci sono anche casi vulnerabili e famiglie. Non voglio discutere la legittimità dei trasferimenti - spiega - voglio che siano fatti da paese civile, nel rispetto delle persone. Su ogni pullman che parte ci sono delle storie, che vanno rispettate e tenute in considerazione”.

      Il terzo pullman parte intorno alle 12. Il sindaco di Castelnuovo di Porto, Riccardo Travaglini dice di aver appreso della chiusura del centro, gestito dalla cooperativa Auxilium, dagli organi di stampa. “Non siamo stati avvisati ufficialmente né dal prefetto né dal ministero degli Interni - afferma -. Non c’è stato nessun passaggio formale, il ministro Salvini continua a dire che è una scelta che si basa sul risparmio dell’affitto, ma queste persone erano inserite nel tessuto sociale, non si può parlare solo di soldi ma si dovrebbe parlare di valore culturale e sociale, di integrazione. Noi per primi abbiamo detto che il Cara andava superato, non siamo qui a difendere i grandi centri, ma non accettiamo questo tipo di modalità che non tiene conto delle persone - aggiunge -. La scelta non è stata concertata con l’ente locale, noi avevamo fatto anche richiesta per lo Sprar e per un’accoglienza in piccoli numeri”. Anche secondo il parroco della chiesa di Santa Lucia, Josè Manuel Torres, quello che sta succedendo a Castelnuovo di Porto è “poco dignitoso”. “Si tronca un cammino di promozione umane e di integrazione - sottolinea -. Qualcuno di loro aveva iniziato a lavorare, un ragazzo la prossima settimana ha l’esame della patente, un altro mi ha chiesto di portare i documenti al suo avvocato perché non sa dove va a finire. Questo modo brusco non condivisibile, non c’è nessun dialogo. Si parla solo di soldi, non si pensa alle persone”.

      Davanti al centro in presidio anche diversi lavoratori che ora rischiano il posto di lavoro. Gli operatori mercoledì saranno in sit-in sotto il ministero dello Sviluppo economico. Rispetto agli ospiti presenti, per ora i trasferimenti riguardano circa 300 persone sulle 500 presenti. 20 persone in possesso della protezione umanitaria non verranno accolte “finiranno in strada - dicono gli operatori - le faranno uscire quando si saranno spente le telecamere. Delle altre 180 che resteranno nella struttura non sappiamo niente”. Dopo i primi trasferimenti, che hanno riguardato solo gli uomini, nei prossimi giorni verranno spostati anche i nuclei familiari. Le regioni di destinazione sono Albruzzo, Basilicata, Molise, Campania, Marche, Piemonte, Lombardia, Toscana, Umbria ed Emilia Romagna. (Eleonora Camilli)

      http://www.redattoresociale.it/Notiziario/Articolo/616619/Castelnuovo-di-Porto-non-difendiamo-i-grandi-centri-ma-cosi-e-inuma

    • The New Irregulars in Italy

      After the spike in irregular migration to Europe in 2014-2017, many Western European countries have started to restrict the rights they grant to asylum seekers. Sweden tightened its laws already in 2016. In early 2018, France also adopted restrictive asylum laws. And this December, news broke that Denmark is planning to confine rejected asylum seekers to a remote island.

      But what happens when a government lowers the level of protection for asylum seekers, especially if it is unable to increase returns of migrants to their countries of origin? The answer seems straightforward: an increase in undocumented migrants stuck in the country. That is precisely what is probably going to happen in Italy over the next two years.

      Long story short. Between June 2018 and December 2020, the number of irregulars in Italy will increased by at least 140,000. Part of this increase (about 25,000) has already happened over the past months. But much of it is expected to take place between today and end-2020.

      In a “baseline scenario” in which Italy retained its three layers of international protection (refugee status, subsidiary protection, and humanitarian protection), irregulars in Italy would rise by around 60,000. But an October 2018 decree-law (now converted into law) is estimated to add another 70,000 irregular migrants to the baseline scenario, more than doubling the number of new irregulars in Italy. At the current rate, returns of irregular migrants to their countries of origin will only marginally limit such an increase.

      This means that, by 2020, the number of irregular migrants in Italy may exceed 670,000. This is more than double the number of irregular migrants that were estimated to be in Italy just five years ago, which was lower than 300,000. It is also the second highest figure ever, second only to the 750,000 irregulars estimated to be present in the country in 2002.

      For a quick snapshot, see this figure:

      Still here? Great, then you are interested in the longer version. Here you go!

      In early October, the Italian government introduced a decree-law (Decreto-Legge n. 113, 4 October 2018) that was converted into law in early December (Legge n. 132, 1 December 2018). Among other things, the law does away with one of three layers of protection for asylum seekers in Italy.

      Before the decree-law entered into force, the Italian system of protection offered three layers of protection:

      a. Refugee status. Resulting directly from the 1951 Geneva Convention, the status is assigned to asylum seekers who can make the case they have a well-founded fear of being personally persecuted “for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion” (art. 1 of the Convention). To these, two EU Directives have added persecutions for reasons of gender and sexual orientation.

      b. Subsidiary protection. Resulting from EU legislation, it is a second, EU-wide layer of protection. It applies to people who, while not qualifying as refugees, “would face a real risk of suffering serious harm” if they returned to their country of origin. This includes the risk of death penalty or execution, the risk of torture or inhumane treatment, and the risk of threat of life by reasons of indiscriminate violence during an armed conflict.

      c. Humanitarian protection. This is the third layer of protection, legislated at national level. Many EU countries have alternative forms of protection after refugee and subsidiary protection, but they vary widely across Europe. In Italy, “humanitarian protection” is used as a residual category, and this protection was attributed for different and quite discretionary reasons, ranging from health issues to harsh economic conditions in the applicants’ country of origin. The maximum length of the residence permit tied to humanitarian protection is two years.

      The current Italian government has decided to abolish humanitarian protection. The rationale behind this change is that, the government believes, the humanitarian protection layer was too benevolent towards irregular migrants who filed an asylum application. In its place, the government introduced six “special cases” (see table below).

      Despite this seemingly vast range of cases, in practice the new “special cases” will probably be applicable to a very small minority of those who were granted humanitarian protection beforehand. On the one hand, it may take some time before the Italian protection system adjusts to a new context in which one layer of protection is almost entirely missing. On the other hand, provisional data seems to point to a scenario in which “special cases” will be very marginal. In the first two months of application of the decree law, humanitarian protection rates dropped from 25% in the previous months, to 12% in October and to just 5% in November.

      To assess the effect of the disappearance of humanitarian protection in Italy on the presence of irregular foreigners, I made some quick simulations.

      Clearly, I have to make some assumptions:

      1. No new irregular entries or overstays. I assume that, between today and December 2020, nobody else will enter Italy irregularly, either by sea, by land or by air, and will therefore not apply for asylum. Also, I assume that no one entering regularly in Italy will overstay their visa. This is highly unrealistic. To stick to asylum applications, this November around 3,800 people applied for asylum in Italy, and while this is a much lower number than the average 11,000 per month that applied for asylum in 2017, it would still amount to almost another 100,000 new asylum seekers between here and December 2020. However, as sea arrivals have remained very low in Italy since mid-July 2017, the volatility of such estimates would be tricky to incorporate into my simulations. Also, these persons would still need to have their asylum request processed before becoming irregulars, so that they may still be regularly residing in Italy as asylum seekers by end-2020. Ultimately, this assumption will lead me to underestimate the number of irregular migrants in Italy in the near future.

      2. No irregular migrant leaves Italy. This is an unrealistic assumption as well. But, again, it is hard to estimate how many irregular migrants would leave Italy in a two-year timeframe, especially as border countries in Europe continue to find ways to suspend Schengen rules and tightly control their borders. By official accounts, over the past year more migrants have been intercepted crossing from Austria into Italy than in the opposite direction. Despite this, we could say that this could lead to an overestimate of the number of irregular migrants in Italy in the near future.

      3. Protection rates remain the same as in recent past (bar the policy change eliminating humanitarian protection). This is realistic, as protection rates have remained remarkably stable in the past three years.

      4. Return rates do not improve substantially. This is realistic: despite electoral promises of rapidly increasing returns of irregulars to their countries of origin, in the first six months of the Conte government, returns have been 20% lower than during the same period of 2017.

      For this simulation, I first need to split the June 2018 – December 2020 period into two time windows: the first is the past, between June and end-October 2018. In this period, about 26,000 asylum seekers in Italy were denied protection, thus becoming irregulars. Meanwhile, just 2,165 persons were returned to their countries of origin. The result is that irregulars in Italy increased by almost 24,000.

      I can now turn to the present and future, during which humanitarian protection is being eliminated: November 2018 – December 2020. For my baseline scenario, recall that, in the past three years, about 55% of asylum applicants have been denied protection in Italy. In the face of this, as of October 2018, Italy had 107,500 pending asylum applications. This means that just short of 60,000 of these persons will likely become irregulars in the country, even before any policy change. Therefore, this estimate will act as my baseline.

      I can then contrast the baseline with the estimated effects of the policy change. The abolition of humanitarian protection will have two effects:

      a. Asylum seekers whose request is still pending will no more be able to receive a humanitarian protection, and will be at a higher risk of having their application denied, thus becoming irregulars;

      b. Current beneficiaries of humanitarian protection will not be able to renew their protection, thus becoming irregulars.

      With regards to (a), in the months before the start of the current government, about 28% received the humanitarian protection. So, out of the pending 107,500 cases, a bit more than 30,000 would have received a humanitarian protection in the baseline scenario, but will now see their application rejected, becoming irregulars.

      As to (b), it is not possible to know with certainty how many persons are currently benefitting from humanitarian protection. However, given that this protection usually lasted two years, and that it could be renewed, a conservative estimate is to consider as beneficiaries all those persons that were granted humanitarian protection over the past two years. They amount to just short of 40,000. All these persons will not be able to renew their humanitarian protection once it expires, and will therefore become irregulars in Italy within the next two years.

      By adding (a) and (b) together, I arrive at 69,751. Therefore, about 70,000 persons are at risk of becoming irregulars in Italy by end-2020 due to the elimination of humanitarian protection. Compared to my baseline estimate of 60,000 new irregulars by 2020, this is a more than doubling in numbers.

      Finally, to get to the full number of new irregulars in Italy by end-2020, I need to subtract those migrants that will be probably returned to their countries of origin. As stated above, in the first 6 months, returns under the current government have been 20% lower than the same period last year.

      The full picture is summarized here:

      To get a sense of what this means for the total number of irregulars in Italy, take a look at the figure below, which is based on estimates by ISMU. Irregular foreigners in Italy had been declining between 2010-2013, but the increase in sea arrivals and in (rejected) asylum applications have reversed the trend between 2013 and today. ISMU estimates that, on 1 January 2018, irregular foreigners in Italy were around 530,000.

      In the baseline scenario, the number of irregulars in Italy would increase again, to around 600,000 in two years. But the abolition of humanitarian protection will bring it to around 670,000 by 2020. The latter is equivalent to a 26% increase from 2018 numbers.

      In absolute terms, 670,000 is not a totally unprecedented number. Similar figures have been reached or exceeded in 2002, 2006, and 2008. When this happened, however, the Italian governments of the time decided to proceed with mass regularizations: in 2002-2003, about 700,000 foreigners were regularized; in 2006, regularizations hovered at around 350,000; and, in 2009, they numbered 300,000. The rationale behind regularizations is that irregular foreigners can only make it through the day by relying on illegal employment or criminal activities, and are also exposed to much higher levels of marginalization. This is also why irregularity is associated with very high crime rate proxies.

      It is time to ask: when will the next mass regularization in Italy take place?

      https://www.ispionline.it/en/publication/new-irregulars-italy-21813

      #statistiques #chiffres #renvois #expulsions

    • Rome veut définitivement faire disparaître le camp de San Ferdinando en Italie

      Le bidonville de San Ferdinando dans le sud de l’Italie a été démantelé à grands renforts de bulldozers mercredi 6 mars. Près d’un millier de personnes y avaient élu domicile. Le gouvernement veut à tout prix éviter que le campement se reforme comme c’est le cas régulièrement.

      Le campement de San Ferdinando, en Calabre dans l’extrême sud de l’Italie, est connu des autorités depuis des années. Régulièrement démantelé, il se reforme à chaque fois accueillant des migrants dans une extrême précarité dont beaucoup ont un travail saisonnier, parfois au noir, dans les exploitations agricoles de la région.

      Mais cette fois-ci, c’est la bonne, à en croire Matteo Salvini, le ministre italien de l’Intérieur et patron de la Ligue (extrême droite antimigrants). Près d’un millier de migrants ont ainsi été évacués mercredi matin dans le calme et leurs baraquements de fortune détruits par des bulldozers. "Comme promis [...] nous sommes passés des paroles aux actes", a réagi l’homme fort du gouvernement populiste italien précisant que 600 policiers et 18 autocars avaient été dépêchés sur place.

      Bien que Matteo Salvini ait promis le relogement des migrants dans des centres d’accueil, plusieurs d’entre eux interrogés mercredi après le démantèlement par les médias locaux ne semblaient pas savoir où ils seraient conduits et où ils passeraient la nuit. Le Premier ministre s’est contenté de répondre, toujours sur Twitter, qu’il se félicitait de parvenir à “soustraire [ces migrants] de la mafia et de la criminalité en les répartissant dans des structures plus petites et contrôlables, ainsi qu’en accroissant la transparence” de sa politique migratoire.

      Les problèmes sécuritaires étaient très courant dans le bidonville de San Ferdinando. Quatre migrants y ont trouvé la mort, assassinés ou morts dans des incendies accidentels ou volontaires, depuis un an, souligne l’association Médecins pour les droits de l’Homme, présente sur place depuis des années. C’est d’ailleurs la mort d’un Sénégalais de 29 ans, Moussa Ba, qui avait conduit les autorités italiennes à ordonner une nouvelle fois la démolition de ce bidonville.

      Une mesure qui ne répond pas au problème, selon les associations de défense. Médecins pour les droits de l’Homme estime que cette "énième" évacuation a été menée "sans prendre en considération ni les droits individuels de ces travailleurs migrants, ni les engagements pris par les institutions et associations régionales et locales en faveur d’actions à long terme destinées à favoriser (leur) insertion sociale".

      Sur les réseaux sociaux, de nombreux citoyens et militants ont aussi fait part de leur colère estimant que les bulldozers n’allaient rien changer au fait que ces migrants évacués étaient bien souvent exploités par des patrons du secteur agricole. "Se débarrasser du bidonville n’est pas la solution, mais plutôt le moyen le plus simple [pour le gouvernement] d’obtenir des votes. Et dans tout ça, personne ne combat les exploiteurs", dénonce ainsi Angelo, un militant actif sur Twitter, vidéo à l’appui.

      La préfecture de Reggio Calabria a assuré de son côté qu’elle prendrait toutes les mesures nécessaires pour empêcher la reconstruction de ce bidonville, qui certaines années a accueilli jusqu’à 5 000 personnes.

      Attirés par le travail saisonnier, des centaines de migrants ont pris l’habitude depuis des années de s’installer dans cette région agricole de la Calabre. La Coldiretti, principal syndicat agricole italien, a d’ailleurs lancé mardi un appel aux autorités pour qu’ils autorisent rapidement l’entrée de travailleurs étrangers en Italie, en raison de l’avancement de la date de certaines récoltes après des températures inhabituellement élevées.

      https://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/15573/rome-veut-definitivement-faire-disparaitre-le-camp-de-san-ferdinando-e

    • Il decreto sicurezza fa aumentare i migranti senza fissa dimora, minando la sicurezza di tutti, dei migranti e delle nostre città.

      Nessun supporto per chi aveva un permesso umanitario e ora deve lasciare i Centri. La situazione descritta nel terzo lavoro di monitoraggio dell’Osservatorio dell’associazione Naga, che garantisce assistenza a cittadini stranieri.

      L’impatto maggiore del decreto Salvini sulla sicurezza varato dallo scorso governo legastellato è quello dell’aumento dei senza fissa dimora. Sì, perché attraverso il taglio dei fondi ai progetti dei centri di accoglienza, ovvero passando dai tanto famigerati 35 euro a un massimo di 19- 26 euro, si risparmia tantissimo sugli alloggi. Nessun supporto è previsto per coloro che sono costretti a lasciare i centri, ad esempio le persone che avevano un permesso umanitario e che da un giorno all’altro si ritrovano senza più diritto all’accoglienza e quindi per strada.

      Questo meccanismo è fortemente patogeno: ritrovarsi per strada comporta i rischi e il degrado psico-fisico che ben si conoscono dagli studi sui senza fissa dimora, riscontrati anche tra i migranti nelle stesse condizioni. In generale, le persone che chiedono asilo arrivano in buona salute, fatte salve le conseguenze delle torture e delle privazioni subite durante i vari episodi di prigionia e lavoro forzato a cui sono stati sottoposti lungo il viaggio per arrivare in Italia.

      Ciò è conosciuto come il cosiddetto «healthy migrant effect»: partono le persone più sane, con più probabilità di farcela. Una volta arrivate si scontrano con quello che la ex primo ministro britannica Theresa May chiamò nel 2012 «hostile enviromnent», cioè condizioni che scoraggiano l’integrazione di una data popolazione in un determinato ambiente.

      Da qui le condizioni di alloggio spesso proibitive, i lavori precari, saltuari e senza forme di protezione, la salute che via via si deteriora. Senza contare l’impatto psicologico dato dall’isolamento e dalla mancanza dei legami familiari, le conseguenze fisiche ancora attuali e lo stress delle torture subite e l’incertezza per le lungaggini nell’ottenere un permesso di soggiorno pur non definitivo.

      Allo stato attuale, se un migrante è senza alloggio è un «senza fissa dimora» e dunque non può avere una residenza. Senza certificato di residenza non può trovare un lavoro regolare. Senza un lavoro regolare non può pensare di poter affittare regolarmente una casa, o nemmeno una stanza. È in una situazione senza vie d’uscita descritta dal terzo lavoro di monitoraggio e analisi compiuto dall’Osservatorio del Naga, un’associazione composta da numerosi volontari che garantiscono assistenza sanitaria, legale e sociale gratuita a cittadini stranieri irregolari e non, a rom, sinti, richiedenti asilo, rifugiati e vittime della tortura, oltre a portare avanti attività di formazione, documentazione e lobbying sulle Istituzioni.

      Tale lavoro ha come obiettivo di comprendere i cambiamenti nel sistema di accoglienza per richiedenti asilo e rifugiati con particolare attenzione all’area di Milano in cui il Naga opera dal 1987. E, infatti, proprio a Milano sarebbero almeno 2.608 i senza fissa dimora. I volontari e le volontarie del Naga hanno visitato nel corso della ricerca diverse tipologie di insediamenti informali (strutture coperte abbandonate, spazi all’aperto, palazzine abbandonate e giardini pubblici) per fornire un identikit delle persone fuori dal sistema di accoglienza e restituire una fotografia di queste marginalità.

      Le persone incontrate hanno provenienze diverse e status giuridici eterogenei: da stranieri in attesa o nell’iter di formalizzazione della richiesta di protezione internazionale, a titolari di protezione, a stranieri con permesso di soggiorno in corso di validità, a cittadini italiani.

      Il minimo comune denominatore sembra essere l’instabilità abitativa, la precarietà occupazionale e salariale e la quasi totale assenza di tutele. Per quanto riguarda chi si trova al di fuori dell’accoglienza, il report descrive anche le risposte istituzionali, che si concretizzano prevalentemente in interventi numericamente insufficienti a favore dei senza fissa dimora e nella pratica costante degli sgomberi senza soluzioni alternative e giustificati dalla retorica della sicurezza e del decoro.

      https://www.diritti-umani.org/2019/12/il-decreto-sicurezza-fa-aumentare-i.html?m=1

    • Imposta l’estromissione dal sistema d’accoglienza dei titolari di protezione umanitaria

      Ieri, 19 dicembre, il Servizio Centrale Sipromi ha inviato una circolare agli enti locali titolari dei progetti Sprar in scadenza al 31/12 (MA prorogati al 30/06/2020) per “sollecitare” l’uscita dal sistema di accoglienza entro il 31 dicembre 2019 dei titolari di protezione umanitaria in accoglienza.

      Con una lettera il Centro Immigrazione Asilo Cooperazione onluns di Parma, ente che da 20 anni accoglie persone per i loro diritti e per i loro bisogni, denuncia una situazione ritenuta inaccettabile ed ingiusta.

      “Non possiamo e non vogliamo accettare questa ingiustizia che interrompe percorsi di vita, cura, studio, lavoro, relazione. Per i titolari di protezione umanitaria che sono ancora in accoglienza deve valere il principio per cui un atto amministrativo non può interrompere un percorso di vita”, dicono al CIAC.

      «Infatti - ribadisce la onlus - per i titolari di protezione umanitaria, tra cui donne, bambini, nuclei familiari, possibili vittime di tratta, persone con disagio mentale non è prevista nessuna altra possibilità di accoglienza. Uscendo dello Sprar, per una norma palesemente ingiusta e insensata, sono messi in strada, in pieno inverno, interrompendo tutela, cura, lavoro, formazione appunto».

      Secondo i dati forniti da CIAC solo in Emilia Romagna sono circa 300 le persone che dovrebbero essere fatte uscire dalle strutture di accoglienza a fine anno. Nella sola provincia di Parma più di 20 persone, tra cui 5 nuclei mamma-bambino.

      «Noi - afferma il CIAC - non applicheremo questa direttiva nelle nostre case, sulle persone con le quali abbiamo un patto di tutela e un dovere professionale e morale di accoglienza. Con loro, quale che sia il permesso di soggiorno, abbiamo contratto un patto che ci vincola – esattamente come lo chiediamo a loro - al rispetto del loro progetto individuale di accoglienza. Che questo potesse essere interrotto dall’interpretazione – ribadiamo una interpretazione - di un comma, di un articolo, di una legge palesemente volta a colpire le tutele dei rifugiati non era nelle regole iniziali. E noi i patti li rispettiamo, come dagli accolti ne esigiamo il rispetto».

      L’associazione spiega che non ci sono solo ragioni etiche, professionali e morali, ed elenca i punti sui quali si basa la volontà di non mettere in strada nessuno.

      Il primo è che «i progetti Sprar/siproimi attivi sono prorogati con decreto del ministro dell’Interno del 13/12/19 sino al giugno 2020 e quanto dice la circolare, giuridicamente è quanto meno opinabile: i progetti non possono dirsi cessati al 31/12/19».

      Il secondo è che la circolare «non considera che è appurata la non retroattività della legge 132/18».

      «Per tutte queste ragioni - conclude CIAC onlus - profondamente stupiti che l’ufficio che governa il sistema di protezione assecondi una interpretazione che nega i principi stessi sui quali l’accoglienza integrata e diffusa si regge (individualizzazione dei percorsi, emancipazione dall’accoglienza, patto di accoglienza), affermiamo con grande convinzione che, solleciti o non solleciti, a fronte di una crescente marginalità sui territori, a fronte di tanti posti vuoti nel sistema che per quella stessa legge che il Servizio Centrale Siproimi cita e che non possono dare sollievo, accoglienza e integrazione a chi in tutta Italia ne avrebbe bisogno».

      http://www.vita.it/it/article/2019/12/20/imposta-lestromissione-dal-sistema-daccoglienza-dei-titolari-di-protez/153674

    • Rapporto “La sicurezza dell’esclusione - Centri d’Italia 2019”

      Le prevedibili conseguenze della legge sicurezza: maggiore irregolarità e smantellamento del sistema d’accoglienza.

      Aumento consistente del numero di cittadini stranieri irregolari e difficoltà nell’applicazione dei nuovi bandi per la gestione dei centri da parte delle Prefetture. È il quadro che emerge dal rapporto “La sicurezza dell’esclusione – Centri d’Italia 2019”, realizzato da Action Aid e Openpolis che offre una prima valutazione dell’impatto delle politiche migratorie del primo Governo Conte.

      Gran parte del lavoro di analisi, suddiviso in due parti, si sofferma sulle conseguenze che la legge sicurezza immigrazione sta producendo sul sistema d’accoglienza nel suo complesso, denunciando nel contempo quanto sia difficile raccogliere le informazioni necessarie per monitorare il sistema dell’accoglienza e le sue evoluzioni per un’assenza quasi totale di trasparenza.
      Indicazioni sul disfacimento complessivo di un sistema e delle tutele dei richiedenti asilo che già molti attivisti, enti del terzo settore e operatori coinvolti nel sistema d’accoglienza avevano ampiamente previsto e che i movimenti avevano cercato di contrastare con mobilitazioni territoriali e di carattere nazionale. Ma nonostante un ampio fermento sociale la legge Salvini è ancora lì a far danni, e, a oggi, la sua abrogazione non è tra le priorità del governo 5stelle-PD.

      «La soppressione della protezione umanitaria, la forma di protezione maggiormente diffusa per chi fino al decreto sicurezza chiedeva asilo in Italia, - si legge nella prima parte dell’inchiesta - espande sempre più la macchia degli stranieri irregolari, che diventa un’emergenza reale con i conseguenti costi umani, sociali e di illegalità diffusa. Un’emergenza per la quale, in assenza di un meccanismo di regolarizzazione, la soluzione dei rimpatri appare nel caso più ottimistico un’illusione».
      Secondo le stime del rapporto sono 40.000 le persone che si sono ritrovate irregolari nel 2019 a causa della soppressione della protezione umanitaria. E queste cifre sono inevitabilmente destinate ad aumentare nel 2020 poiché la legge ha generato una perversa stretta anche nelle procedure e nei responsi delle Commissioni territoriali, sempre più restìe a concedere una forma di protezione. Del resto i rimpatri, che non sono mai stati una reale soluzione ma un altro strumento di propaganda politica, sono stati nel 2018 circa 5.615. A questo ritmo si stima che per rimpatriare i 680mila cittadini stranieri irregolari servirebbero oltre 100 anni, senza contare il costo economico di una tale contestabile operazione.

      Il rapporto si sofferma ampiamente anche sulle conseguenze delle nuove regole delle gare di appalto per la gestione dei centri. Regole «volute per razionalizzare il sistema e tagliare i costi e i servizi di inclusione, si scontrano con la difficoltà, anche di natura politica, dei gestori di farvi fronte e delle prefetture di applicarle. Diversi i bandi deserti, quelli ripetuti o che non riescono a coprire il fabbisogno dei posti nei centri». E’ di fatto un ritorno alla logica dei grandi centri di parcheggio per richiedenti asilo, perlopiù dislocati in periferia, e il totale abbandono di un’idea di accoglienza diffusa non solo funzionale alla distribuzione dei richiedenti asilo su tutto il territorio nazionale, ma soprattutto ad una loro inclusione sociale e una reciproca conoscenza con le comunità locali.
      «Un affare - continua l’inchiesta - che attrae i gestori a carattere industriale, grandi soggetti privati anche esteri in grado di realizzare economie di scala, e allontana i piccoli con vocazione sociale e personale qualificato». E - aggiungiamo noi - è anche un modello che attrae il malaffare e la criminalità organizzata, la quale è tranquillamente in grado di fare profitto nonostante la fetta di guadagno si sia a prima vista ridotta.

      Una totale assenza di programmazione. Il sistema di accoglienza sembra gestito giorno per giorno senza nessuna programmazione strategica.

      Nella seconda parte di «La sicurezza dell’esclusione – Centri d’Italia 2019» viene ulteriormente analizzato l’impatto dei nuovi capitolati di gara collegati al decreto sicurezza sul funzionamento della macchina dell’accoglienza. Sistema che al 31 dicembre 2019 accoglie in totale 91.424 persone, delle quali 66.958 con richiesta di protezione internazionale sono accolte nei CAS e 24.388, già riconosciute come titolari di protezione internazionale o protezione umanitaria, nei progetti ex SPRAR, rinominati dal decreto sicurezza SIPROIMI. Su questi ultimi, inoltre, si è abbattuta la scure della circolare del ministero dell’interno di Natale, che prevede la loro uscita forzata o tutt’al più il trasferimento in servizi di bassa soglia. Persone vulnerabili e famiglie che da un giorno all’altro si ritroveranno senza alloggio e assistenza, costretti a rivolgersi ai servizi sociali territoriali, senza trovare poi grandi risposte, o immediatamente a ingrossare le file dei senza tetto.
      Nella carrellata di numeri va infine ricordato che tra le conseguenze della legge ci sono anche i 5.000 posti di lavoro persi. Ma al governo Conte bis tutto ciò non sembra destare così grande preoccupazione.

      https://www.meltingpot.org/Rapporto-La-sicurezza-dell-esclusione-Centri-d-Italia-2019.html
      #rapport #Stefano_Bleggi

    • Les lois anti-migrants de Salvini sont toujours d’actualité en Italie

      Fin 2018, l’ancien ministre de l’Intérieur et chef de la Ligue, Matteo Salvini, a fait adopter des mesures anti-migrants très restrictives, parmi lesquelles l’abolition de la protection humanitaire qui représentait 28% des permis de séjour délivrés aux demandeurs d’asile. Ces mesures n’ont pas été modifiées par la coalition formée du Mouvement Cinq étoiles et du Parti démocrate, au pouvoir depuis cinq mois. Et c’est maintenant que leurs effets commencent à être visibles. Quelle est la situation actuelle des migrants qui ne peuvent plus bénéficier du permis de séjour humanitaire ?

      C’est une situation qui risque de devenir explosive. Les organisations non gouvernementales estiment à 70 000 le nombre demandeurs d’asile qui vont rejoindre les rangs des clandestins, soit environ 600 000 personnes. C’est en effet maintenant que l’on voit les effets des mesures sécuritaires adoptées il y a plus d’un an. Jusqu’alors, le permis de séjour humanitaire était délivré pour une durée de deux ans, renouvelable. Désormais, s’il arrive à échéance, cela implique le retour à la rue et à l’irrégularité, pour deux raisons : les migrants adultes doivent quitter les centres d’accueil institutionnels et ils n’ont plus accès au travail légal, car un employeur qui embauche, ou maintient à son poste, une personne qui n’a pas de papiers en règle risque des sanctions pénales.

      Concrètement, cela signifie donc que ceux qui avaient un contrat de travail en bonne et due forme doivent être licenciés ?

      On peut citer à titre d’exemple le cas d’une entreprise de Parme, en Émilie-Romagne, spécialisée dans la logistique, la Number 1 Logistics qui emploie 4 000 salariés. En 2017, elle avait recruté 120 personnes provenant du Ghana, du Nigéria, du Sénégal et du Venezuela et titulaires d’un permis de séjour humanitaire. L’entreprise les a formées, leur a offert un contrat de travail régulier avec une paie de 1 200 euros par mois, qui correspond à ce que perçoit un ouvrier non spécialisé. Mais elles ont dû être licenciées comme l’a récemment déploré le patron de Number 1 Logistics, lors d’une réunion de la Commission parlementaire chargée des affaires constitutionnelles.

      Un cas tristement exemplaire. Le nouveau gouvernement, formé il y a cinq mois, envisage-t-il d’abroger ou de modifier les décrets sécuritaires de Matteo Salvini ?

      En fait, les divergences entre le Mouvement Cinq étoiles et le Parti démocrate sur un dossier aussi important que celui des migrants cristallisent la situation. Certes, on en est plus à l’époque du Salvini tout puissant et des ports fermés. Mais concernant les politiques d’intégration, on ne note encore aucun changement. Cela dit, la ministre de l’Intérieur, Lucia Lamorgese, une technicienne soutenue par le centre gauche, a annoncé qu’elle voulait assouplir les conditions de régularisation, notamment pour les demandeurs d’asile obtenant un contrat de travail. Un projet en ce sens devrait être présenté devant le Parlement, après les élections régionales du 26 janvier en Émilie-Romagne et en Calabre.

      https://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/22186/les-lois-anti-migrants-de-salvini-sont-toujours-d-actualite-en-italie?

    • La sicurezza dell’esclusione

      Aumento consistente del numero di stranieri irregolari e difficoltà nell’applicazione dei nuovi bandi per la gestione dei centri da parte delle Prefetture. È il quadro che emerge dal rapporto “La sicurezza dell’esclusione – Centri d’Italia 2019”, che abbiamo realizzato con openpolis e che offre una prima valutazione dell’impatto delle politiche migratorie del primo Governo Conte.

      https://www.actionaid.it/app/uploads/2020/05/CentridItalia_2019.pdf

      Pour télécharger le #rapport:
      La sicurezza dell’esclusione


      https://www.actionaid.it/app/uploads/2020/05/CentridItalia_2019.pdf

    • Migranti, così i decreti Salvini hanno fatto scivolare 140 mila persone nell’irregolarità

      Anticipazione del Dossier statistico 2020. Per la prima volta dopo anni diminuiscono di ben 100 mila unità gli stranieri extra Ue regolarmente soggiornanti in Italia. Effetto in particolare del primo decreto sicurezza, oltre che della perdurante mancanza di programmazione degli ingressi stabili

      https://www.redattoresociale.it/article/notiziario/migranti_cosi_i_decreti_salvini_hanno_fatto_scivolare_140mila_perso

  • Words matter. Is it @AP style to call migrants an “army”—above a photo of mothers tending to their infants and toddlers, no less? This is not only incorrect, but it enables a racist narrative sold by this @POTUS and his supporters. Armies invade. These people are running away.


    https://twitter.com/JamilSmith/status/1054163071785037824
    #armée #terminologie #préjugés #invasion #afflux #mots #vocabulaire #migrations #réfugiés #médias #journalisme #presse

    • #Polly_Pallister-Wilkins sur la marche de migrants qui a lieu en Amérique centrale...

      Dear media reporting on the Central American migrant caravan, can you please be attentive to how you talk about it? 1/n
      People are walking, walking not pouring, flowing, or streaming. Walking. They are walking along roads, they will be tired, hungry, their feet will hurt, they will have blisters and sore joints. They are not a natural liquid phenomenon governed by the force of gravity. 2/n
      Their walking is conditioned by the infrastructures they move along like roads, the physical geographies they traverse like hills and rivers and the human controls they encounter like border controls and police checkpoints. 3/n
      All of these things are risky, they make the walk, the journey more difficult and dangerous, esepcially the police checkpoints and the border controls. These risks are the reason they are travelling as a caravan, as a large group attempting to minimise the risks of controls 4/n
      And the risks from gangs and criminals that migrants on their journeys routinely face. Their journey is a deeply embodied one, and one that is deeply conditioned both by the violence they are leaving and the violence of the journey itself. 5/n
      So media please try and reflect this in your storytelling. These people are not a river obeying gravity. They have made an active yet conditioned choice to move. When they encounter a block in their path this can be deadly. It can detain, deport, injure, rape, or kill. 6/n
      And these blockages are not boulders in a riverbed around which the river flows. These blockages, these #checkpoints, border controls or police patrols are human blockages, they are not natural. So please try and reflect the political structures of this journey. Please. End/
      Addendum: there is a long history of caravans as a form political resistance in Central America.

      https://twitter.com/PollyWilkins/status/1054267257944227840
      #marche #migrations #Honduras #Amérique_centrale #mots #vocabulaire #terminologie #média #journalisme #presse #caravane #métaphores_liquides #risque #gravité #mouvement #contrôles_frontaliers #blocages #barrières #résistance #Mexique

    • Migrants travel in groups for a simple reason: safety

      A caravan of Central American migrants traveling to through Mexico to the United States to seek asylum is about halfway through its journey.

      The caravan began on Oct. 13 in Honduras with 200 people. As it has moved through Honduras, Guatemala and now Mexico, its ranks have grown to over 7,000, according to an estimate by the International Organization of Migration.

      The migrants have been joined by representatives from humanitarian organizations like the Mexican Red Cross providing medical assistance and human rights groups that monitor the situation.

      Journalists are there, too, and their reporting has caught the attention of President Donald Trump.

      He has claimed that the caravan’s ranks probably hide Middle Eastern terrorists. Trump later acknowledged there is no evidence of this, but conservative media outlets have nevertheless spread the message.

      It is reasonable for Americans to have security concerns about immigration. But as a scholar of forced migration, I believe it’s also important to consider why migrants travel in groups: their own safety.
      Safety in numbers

      The Central Americans in the caravan, like hundreds of thousands of people who flee the region each year, are escaping extreme violence, lack of economic opportunity and growing environmental problems, including drought and floods, back home.

      Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico have some of the world’s highest murder rates. According to Doctors Without Borders, which provides medical care in crisis zones, 68 percent of the migrants and refugees it surveyed in Mexico had experienced violence. Nearly one-third of women were sexually abused.

      Whether crossing Central America, the Sahara desert or the mountains of Afghanistan, migrants are regularly extorted by criminals, militias and corrupt immigration officials who know migrants make easy targets: They carry cash but not weapons.

      Large groups increase migrants’ chance of safe passage, and they provide some sense of community and solidarity on the journey, as migrants themselves report.
      Publicizing the dangers they flee

      Large groups of migrants also attract media coverage. As journalists write about why people are on the move, they shed light on Central America’s many troubles.

      Yet headlines about huge migrant caravans may misrepresent trends at the U.S.-Mexico border, where migration is actually decreasing.

      While the number of Central American families and children seeking asylum in the U.S. has increased in the past two years, Mexican economic migrants are crossing the border at historically low levels.

      And while most migrant caravan members hope to seek asylum in the U.S., recent history shows many will stay in Mexico.

      In response to Trump’s immigration crackdown, Mexican president-elect Andrés Manuel López Obrador has promised to welcome Central American refugees — and try to keep them safe.


      https://theconversation.com/migrants-travel-in-groups-for-a-simple-reason-safety-105621

      #sécurité

    • Trump’s Caravan Hysteria Led to This

      The president and his supporters insisted that several thousand Honduran migrants were a looming menace—and the Pittsburgh gunman took that seriously.

      On Tuesday, October 16, President Donald Trump started tweeting.

      “The United States has strongly informed the President of Honduras that if the large Caravan of people heading to the U.S. is not stopped and brought back to Honduras, no more money or aid will be given to Honduras, effective immediately!”

      “We have today informed the countries of Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador that if they allow their citizens, or others, to journey through their borders and up to the United States, with the intention of entering our country illegally, all payments made to them will STOP (END)!”

      Vice President Mike Pence also tweeted:

      “Spoke to President Hernandez of Honduras about the migrant caravan heading to the U.S. Delivered strong message from @POTUS: no more aid if caravan is not stopped. Told him U.S. will not tolerate this blatant disregard for our border & sovereignty.”

      The apparent impetus for this outrage was a segment on Fox News that morning that detailed a migrant caravan thousands of miles away in Honduras. The caravan, which began sometime in mid-October, is made up of refugees fleeing violence in their home country. Over the next few weeks, Trump did his best to turn the caravan into a national emergency. Trump falsely told his supporters that there were “criminals and unknown Middle Easterners” in the caravan, a claim that had no basis in fact and that was meant to imply that terrorists were hiding in the caravan—one falsehood placed on another. Defense Secretary James Mattis ordered more troops to the border. A Fox News host took it upon herself to ask Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen whether there was “any scenario under which if people force their way across the border they could be shot at,” to which Nielsen responded, “We do not have any intention right now to shoot at people.”

      Pence told Fox News on Friday, “What the president of Honduras told me is that the caravan was organized by leftist organizations, political activists within Honduras, and he said it was being funded by outside groups, and even from Venezuela … So the American people, I think, see through this—they understand this is not a spontaneous caravan of vulnerable people.”

      The Department of Homeland Security’s Twitter account “confirmed” that within the caravan are people who are “gang members or have significant criminal histories,” without offering evidence of any such ties. Trump sought to blame the opposition party for the caravan’s existence. “Every time you see a Caravan, or people illegally coming, or attempting to come, into our Country illegally, think of and blame the Democrats for not giving us the votes to change our pathetic Immigration Laws!” Trump tweeted on October 22. “Remember the Midterms! So unfair to those who come in legally.”

      In the right-wing fever swamps, where the president’s every word is worshipped, commenters began amplifying Trump’s exhortations with new details. Representative Matt Gaetz of Florida wondered whether George Soros—the wealthy Jewish philanthropist whom Trump and several members of the U.S. Senate blamed for the protests against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, and who was recently targeted with a bomb—was behind the migrant caravan. NRATV, the propaganda organ of the National Rifle Association, linked two Republican obsessions, voter fraud and immigration. Chuck Holton told NRATV’s viewers that Soros was sending the caravan to the United States so the migrants could vote: “It’s telling that a bevy of left-wing groups are partnering with a Hungarian-born billionaire and the Venezuelan government to try to influence the 2018 midterms by sending Honduran migrants north in the thousands.” On CNN, the conservative commentator Matt Schlapp pointedly asked the anchor Alisyn Camerota, “Who’s paying for the caravan? Alisyn, who’s paying for the caravan?,” before later answering his own question: “Because of the liberal judges and other people that intercede, including George Soros, we have too much chaos at our southern border.” On Laura Ingraham’s Fox News show, one guest said, “These individuals are not immigrants—these are people that are invading our country,” as another guest asserted they were seeking “the destruction of American society and culture.”

      Peter Beinart: Trump shut programs to counter violent extremists

      In the meantime, much of the mainstream press abetted Trump’s effort to make the midterm election a referendum on the caravan. Popular news podcasts devoted entire episodes to the caravan. It remained on the front pages of major media websites. It was an overwhelming topic of conversation on cable news, where Trumpists freely spread disinformation about the threat the migrants posed, while news anchors displayed exasperation over their false claims, only to invite them back on the next day’s newscast to do it all over again.

      In reality, the caravan was thousands of miles and weeks away from the U.S. border, shrinking in size, and unlikely to reach the U.S. before the election. If the migrants reach the U.S., they have the right under U.S. law to apply for asylum at a port of entry. If their claims are not accepted, they will be turned away. There is no national emergency; there is no ominous threat. There is only a group of desperate people looking for a better life, who have a right to request asylum in the United States and have no right to stay if their claims are rejected. Trump is reportedly aware that his claims about the caravan are false. An administration official told the Daily Beast simply, “It doesn’t matter if it’s 100 percent accurate … this is the play.” The “play” was to demonize vulnerable people with falsehoods in order to frighten Trump’s base to the polls.

      Nevertheless, some took the claims of the president and his allies seriously. On Saturday morning, Shabbat morning, a gunman walked into the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh and killed 11 people. The massacre capped off a week of terrorism, in which one man mailed bombs to nearly a dozen Trump critics and another killed two black people in a grocery store after failing to force his way into a black church.

      Before committing the Tree of Life massacre, the shooter, who blamed Jews for the caravan of “invaders” and who raged about it on social media, made it clear that he was furious at HIAS, founded as the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, a Jewish group that helps resettle refugees in the United States. He shared posts on Gab, a social-media site popular with the alt-right, expressing alarm at the sight of “massive human caravans of young men from Honduras and El Salvador invading America thru our unsecured southern border.” And then he wrote, “HIAS likes to bring invaders in that kill our people. I can’t sit by and watch my people get slaughtered. Screw your optics, I’m going in.”

      The people killed on Saturday were killed for trying to make the world a better place, as their faith exhorts them to do. The history of the Jewish people is one of displacement, statelessness, and persecution. What groups like HIAS do in helping refugees, they do with the knowledge that comes from a history of being the targets of demagogues who persecute minorities in pursuit of power.

      Ordinarily, a politician cannot be held responsible for the actions of a deranged follower. But ordinarily, politicians don’t praise supporters who have mercilessly beaten a Latino man as “very passionate.” Ordinarily, they don’t offer to pay supporters’ legal bills if they assault protesters on the other side. They don’t praise acts of violence against the media. They don’t defend neo-Nazi rioters as “fine people.” They don’t justify sending bombs to their critics by blaming the media for airing criticism. Ordinarily, there is no historic surge in anti-Semitism, much of it targeted at Jewish critics, coinciding with a politician’s rise. And ordinarily, presidents do not blatantly exploit their authority in an effort to terrify white Americans into voting for their party. For the past few decades, most American politicians, Republican and Democrat alike, have been careful not to urge their supporters to take matters into their own hands. Trump did everything he could to fan the flames, and nothing to restrain those who might take him at his word.

      Many of Trump’s defenders argue that his rhetoric is mere shtick—that his attacks, however cruel, aren’t taken 100 percent seriously by his supporters. But to make this argument is to concede that following Trump’s statements to their logical conclusion could lead to violence against his targets, and it is only because most do not take it that way that the political violence committed on Trump’s behalf is as limited as it currently is.

      The Tree of Life shooter criticized Trump for not being racist or anti-Semitic enough. But with respect to the caravan, the shooter merely followed the logic of the president and his allies: He was willing to do whatever was necessary to prevent an “invasion” of Latinos planned by perfidious Jews, a treasonous attempt to seek “the destruction of American society and culture.”

      The apparent spark for the worst anti-Semitic massacre in American history was a racist hoax inflamed by a U.S. president seeking to help his party win a midterm election. There is no political gesture, no public statement, and no alteration in rhetoric or behavior that will change this fact. The shooter might have found a different reason to act on a different day. But he chose to act on Saturday, and he apparently chose to act in response to a political fiction that the president himself chose to spread and that his followers chose to amplify.

      As for those who aided the president in his propaganda campaign, who enabled him to prey on racist fears to fabricate a national emergency, who said to themselves, “This is the play”? Every single one of them bears some responsibility for what followed. Their condemnations of anti-Semitism are meaningless. Their thoughts and prayers are worthless. Their condolences are irrelevant. They can never undo what they have done, and what they have done will never be forgotten.

      https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2018/10/caravan-lie-sparked-massacre-american-jews/574213

    • Latin American asylum seekers hit US policy “wall”

      Trump’s new restrictions mean long waits simply to register claims.

      The movement of thousands of Central American asylum seekers and migrants north from Honduras towards the southern border of the United States has precipitated threats from US President Donald Trump – ahead of next week’s midterm elections – to block the group’s entry by deploying troops to the US-Mexican border.

      Under international law the United States is obligated to allow asylum seekers to enter and file claims. However, immigration officials at the country’s southern border have for months been shifting toward legally dubious practices that restrict people’s ability to file asylum claims.

      “Make no mistake, the administration is building a wall – one made of restrictionist policy rather than brick and mortar,” said Jason Boyd, policy counsel at the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA).

      As a result, hundreds, possibly thousands, of asylum seekers have been left waiting for extended periods of time on the Mexican side of the border in need of shelter and basic services. Firm numbers for those affected are difficult to come by because no one is counting.

      Some of those turned away explore potentially dangerous alternatives. Aid and advocacy groups as well as the Department of Homeland Security say the wait has likely pushed some to attempt to enter the United States illegally, either with smugglers or on their own via perilous desert routes.

      While some of those in the so-called “migrant caravan” are searching for economic opportunity, others are fleeing gang violence, gender-based violence, political repression or unrest – all increasingly common factors in Central America and Mexico that push people to leave their homes.
      Menacing phone calls

      When people from the migrant caravan reach the southern border of the United States, they may find themselves in a similar position to Dolores Alzuri, 47, from Michoacan, a state in central Mexico.

      In late September, she was camped out with her husband, daughter, granddaughter, and aunt on the Mexican side of the DeConcini port of entry separating the twin cities of Nogales – one in the Mexican state of Sonora, the other in the US state of Arizona.

      Alzuri and her family were waiting for their turn to claim asylum in the United States, with only a police report in hand as proof of the threats they faced back home. Camping beside them on the pedestrian walkway just outside the grated metal door leading to the United States, nine other families waited to do the same.

      Over the preceding month Alzuri had received several menacing phone calls from strangers demanding money. In Michoacan, and many other parts of Mexico where criminal gangs have a strong presence, almost anybody can receive calls like these. You don’t know who’s on the other end of the line, Alzuri explained, but you do know the consequences of not following their orders.

      “If you do not give [money] to them, they kidnap you or they kidnap your family,” Alzuri said. “They destroy you. They kill you. That is why it is so scary to be in this country.”

      Other people she knew had received similar calls. She also knew that those who didn’t pay ended up dead – pictures of their bodies posted on Facebook as a macabre warning of what happens to those who resist.

      Fearing a similar fate, Alzuri packed her bags and her family and travelled north to ask for asylum in the United States. A friend had been granted asylum about nine months ago, and she had seen on television that other people were going, too. It seemed like the only way out.

      “I had a problem,” she said, referring to the phone calls. “They asked us for money, and since we did not give them money, they threatened us.”

      Before leaving her home, Alzuri said she filed a police report. But the authorities didn’t care enough to act on it, she said. “They are not going to risk their life for mine.”
      No way out

      Despite the danger at home, Alzuri and others in similar situations face an increasingly difficult time applying for asylum in the United States. At the Nogales crossing, asylum seekers must now wait up to a month simply to be allowed to set foot inside a border office where they can register their claims, aid workers there say.

      Those waiting are stuck in territory on the Mexican side that is controlled by gangs similar to the ones many are fleeing, though local aid groups have scrambled to find space in shelters, especially for women and children, so people will be safer while they wait.

      The situation hasn’t always been like this.

      In the past, asylum seekers were almost always admitted to register their claims the same day they arrived at the border. Since May, however, there has been a marked slowdown in registration.

      US Custom and Border Protection (CBP), the federal law enforcement agency responsible for screening people as they enter the country, says delays are due to a lack of capacity and space. But asylum advocates say similar numbers have arrived in previous years without causing a delay and the real reason for the slowdown is that CBP has shifted resources away from processing asylum seekers – not just in Nogales but across the southern US border – resulting in people being forced to wait for long periods or turned away altogether.

      This is happening despite the insistence of high-ranking Trump administration officials that asylum seekers present themselves at ports of entry or face criminal prosecution for crossing the border irregularly. Such contradictory policies, asylum advocates argue, are part of a broad-based effort by the Trump administration to dramatically reduce the number of people able to seek protection in the United States.

      “Our legal understanding is that they have the legal obligation to process asylum seekers as they arrive,” said Joanna Williams, director of education and advocacy at the Kino Border Initiative (KBI), a Nogales-based NGO. “There’s no room in the law for what they are doing right now.”
      A system in crisis

      In the past decade, migration across the southern border of the United States has undergone a dramatic change. Every year since the late 1970s US Border Patrol agents apprehended close to a million or more undocumented migrants entering the country. In 2007, that number began to fall, and last year there were just over 310,000 apprehensions – the lowest number since 1971.

      At the same time, the proportion of people entering the United States from the southern border to claim asylum has increased. Ten years ago, one out of every 100 people crossing the border was seeking humanitarian protection, according to a recent report published by the Migration Policy Institute (MPI), a non-partisan think tank in Washington DC. Today that number is about one in three.

      According to Boyd of AILA, the increase is being driven by ongoing humanitarian emergencies in El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala, an area of Central America known as the Northern Triangle. These countries have some of the highest homicide rates in the world and are wracked by gang violence, gender-based violence, extortion, and extra-judicial killings. “Many of the individuals and families arriving at the US southern border are literally fleeing for their lives,” said Boyd.

      But the system that is supposed to provide them protection is in crisis. Beginning in 2010 the number of asylum requests lodged in the United States started to balloon, mirroring an upward trend in global displacement. Last year, 79,000 people approached the US border saying they had a credible fear of returning to their home country, compared to 9,000 at the beginning of the decade.

      The increase in credible-fear claims, as well as asylum requests made by people already in the United States, has strained the system to a “crisis point”, according to the MPI report. This has led to a backlog of around 320,000 cases in US immigration courts and people having to wait many months, if not years, to receive a hearing and a decision.
      Crackdown

      Senior officials in the Trump administration, including the president, have consistently lumped asylum seekers and economic migrants together, positing that the United States is being “invaded” by a “massive influx of illegal aliens” across the southern border, and that the asylum system is subject to “systematic abuse” by people looking to gain easy entry to the country.

      People working on the ground with asylum seekers refute this. Eduardo Garcia is a communication coordinator at SOA Watch, an organisation that monitors the humanitarian impact of US policy in Latin America. He has spent time in Nogales speaking with people waiting to claim asylum.

      “The stories of many of the people we have talked to… are stories of people fleeing gang violence, are stories of people fleeing because one of their sons was killed, because one of their sons was threatened, because one of their family members [was] raped,” he said. “They have said they cannot go back to their countries. If they are sent back they are going to be killed.”

      Still, the Trump administration’s zero-tolerance policy on immigration – responsible for the recent child-separation crisis – has also included measures that have restricted access to asylum in the United States.

      In May, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the Justice Department would begin criminally prosecuting everyone who irregularly crossed the US southern border, including asylum seekers. In June, that policy was followed by a decision that the United States would no longer consider gang and sexual violence – precisely the reasons so many people flee the Northern Triangle – as legitimate grounds for asylum. Around the same time, CBP appears to have deprioritised the processing of asylum seekers at ports of entry in favour of other responsibilities, leading to the long waits and people being turned away, according to humanitarian workers and a recent report by the DHS’s Office of Inspector General.

      And even as these restrictive policies were being put in place, Trump administration officials have been encouraging asylum seekers to try. “If you’re seeking asylum, go to a port of entry,” Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen said in an 18 June press conference. “You do not need to break the law of the United States to seek asylum.”

      Nogales, Mexico

      “I came here with the hope that if I asked for asylum I could be in the United States,” said Modesto, a 54-year-old from Chimaltenango, Guatemala. In mid-September he was sitting in a mess hall run a couple hundred meters from the US border run by KBI, which provides humanitarian assistance to migrants and asylum seekers.

      Modesto had already been in Nogales, Sonora for several months. Like Dolores Alzuri, he fled his home because criminal gangs had tried to extort money from him. “I worked a lot and was making a living in my country,” Modesto explained. “The problem in particular with the gangs is that they don’t let you work… If you have money they extort you. If you don’t have money they want to recruit you.” And people who don’t cooperate: “They’re dead,” he added.

      The situation Modesto found when he arrived in Nogales, Sonora was far from what he expected. For starters, there was the long wait at the border. But he also discovered that – as an adult travelling with his 18-year-old son – even once he entered the United States he would likely end up in a detention centre while his case slowly made its way through the overburdened immigration courts – a practice that has also increased under the Trump administration. “I don’t want to cross… and spend a year in prison when my family needs my help,” he said.

      Modesto is in some ways an exception, according to Williams of KBI. Many of the people arriving in Nogales, Sonora are families with children. Once in the United States they will likely be released from immigration detention with ankle monitoring bracelets to track their movements. These people often choose to wait and to claim asylum at the port of entry when there is space.

      After more than 100 people piled up to wait at the border in May, local humanitarian groups set up a system to organise and keep track of whose turn it was to submit an asylum claim to US immigration officials. They also scrambled to find spaces in shelters so people were not sleeping on the walkway over the weeks they needed to wait.

      Now, only people who are likely to enter soon are camped on the walkway. When IRIN visited, about 40 asylum seekers – mostly women and children – sat on one side of the walkway as a steady stream of people heading to the United States filtered by on the other. Some of the asylum seekers were new arrivals waiting to be taken to a shelter, while others had been sleeping there for days on thin mats waiting for their turn. Volunteers handed out clean clothing and served pasta, as a CBP agent opened and closed the metal gate leading to the United States, just a few tantalisingly short feet away.

      The slowdown of processing “leaves people stranded – in really dangerous situations sometimes – on the other side of the border, and completely violates our obligations under both domestic and international law,” said Katharina Obser, a senior policy adviser at the Women’s Refugee Commission, an NGO that advocates for women, children, and youth displaced by conflict and crisis.

      As a result, some people arrive, find out about the wait, and leave. “We’re fairly certain that those are individuals who then end up crossing the border through other means,” Williams said.

      The DHS Office of the Inspector General came to a similar conclusion, finding that the contradiction between Trump administration rhetoric and policy “may have led asylum seekers at ports of entry to attempt illegal border crossings.”
      Border-wide

      The situation in Nogales, Sonora is far from isolated, according to Boyd of the AILA. “Recent turnbacks of vulnerable asylum seekers have been documented throughout the US southern border,” he said, including at many ports of entry in Texas and California. In those states, asylum seekers have reported being stopped as they approach the border and told they cannot enter because immigration officials don’t have the capacity to process their claims.

      “Turnbacks form part of a comprehensive set of practices and policies advanced under this administration that appears aimed at shutting out asylum seekers from the United States,” Boyd continued.

      Meanwhile, people like Dolores Alzuri – and most likely some of the thousands of Central Americans who are travelling north from Honduras in the hope of claiming asylum – are left with little choice but to wait. Moving somewhere else in Mexico or returning home is not an option, said Alzuri. “The violence is the same in every state,” she said. And crossing the desert, “that’s a big danger.”

      She and her family don’t have a back-up plan. “Let’s hope that I do get [asylum], because I really do need it,” she said. “You don’t live comfortably in your own country anymore. You live in fear that something will happen to you. You can’t walk around on the streets because you feel that you’re being followed.”

      https://www.irinnews.org/news-feature/2018/10/29/latin-american-asylum-seekers-hit-us-policy-wall
      #USA #Etats-Unis #fermeture_des_frontières #Mexique

      Commentaire Emmanuel Blanchar via la mailing-list Migreurop:

      Un article intéressant car il rappelle opportunément que la « caravane des migrants » en route vers les Etats-Unis est également composée de nombreuses personnes qui souhaiteraient pouvoir déposer des demandes d’asile. Or, si la frontières Mexique-USA est loin d’être encore mûrées, un mur administratif empêche déjà que les demandes d’asile puisse être déposées et traitées dans le respect des droits des requérant.e.s.

      #mur_administratif #asile

    • No es una caravana, es un dolor que camina

      La caravana de migrantes es sólo la primera manifestación pública y masiva de la crisis humanitaria en la que vive la mayoría de la población; negada por el gobierno, por la oligarquía, embajadas, organizaciones de la sociedad civil y por algunas agencias de cooperación que le hacen comparsa a la dictadura.

      Esta crisis humanitaria es provocada por el modelo económico neoliberal impuesto a sangre y fuego, que sólo pobreza y violencia ha llevado a las comunidades, que ante la ausencia de oportunidades y ante el acoso de los grupos criminales no tienen otra alternativa que la peligrosa e incierta ruta migratoria; prefieren morir en el camino que en sus barrios y colonias.

      El infierno en que se ha convertido Honduras tiene varios responsables. En primer el lugar el imperialismo, que a través de su embajada promueve la inestabilidad política en el país con el apoyo directo al dictador, que para granjearse ese apoyo les ha entregado el país, hasta el grado del despojo y de la ignominia, como puede observarse en los foros internacionales.

      Otro responsable es el dictador, que además de la incertidumbre que genera en lo económico, en lo político y en lo social, ha profundizado y llevado al extremo las políticas neoliberales, despojando de sus recursos a comunidades enteras, para dárselas a las transnacionales, principalmente norteamericanas y canadienses.

      La oligarquía corrupta, mediocre, salvaje, inepta y rapaz también es responsable de esta crisis humanitaria, quien se ha acostumbrado a vivir del presupuesto nacional a tal grado de convertir al Estado en su patrimonio, por medio de un ejército de ocupación, de diputados y presidentes serviles y títeres, que toman las decisiones no para el pueblo, sino que para sus insaciables intereses.

      Hay otro actor importante en esta crisis y es el Ejército Nacional, fiel sirviente de los intereses imperiales y de la oligarquía, que sólo sirve para consumir una gran tajada del presupuesto nacional y más que un ejército defensor y garante de la soberanía nacional es una fuerza de ocupación; listo para asesinar, torturar y matar aquellos que se oponen al dictador, al imperio y la oligarquía.

      Desgraciadamente esta caravana la conforman los miserables, los desheredados de la tierra, los parias: “los que crían querubes para el presidio y serafines para el burdel” como dijo en su poema, Los Parias, el poeta mexicano Salvador Díaz Mirón.

      Estos miserables y desheredados no huyen de la patria, la aman, la adoran y la llevan convertida en un dolor sobre sus hombros, huyen de los verdugos y carniceros que nos gobiernan y de los otros responsables de esta crisis humanitaria. Los que huyen aman a esta tierra más que los que nos quedamos.

      https://criterio.hn/2018/10/29/no-es-una-caravana-es-un-dolor-que-camina
      #douleur

    • WALKING, NOT FLOWING : THE MIGRANT CARAVAN AND THE GEOINFRASTRUCTURING OF UNEQUAL MOBILITY

      In 2015 our TV screens, newspapers and social media were full of stories about ‘flows’ of migrants ‘pouring’ into Europe, set alongside photos and videos of people packed into boats at sea or meandering in long lines across fields. This vocabulary, and the images that accompanied it, suggested that migration was a natural force: like a flow of water that cannot be stopped, governed only by the forces of gravity. Now, this same language is being used to describe the ‘migrant caravan’ of the thousands of Hondurans leaving the violence of their home country and attempting to journey to the US.

      This essay began life as an angry Twitter thread, hastily tapped out with my morning coffee. I argued that people were not flowing, but rather walking. In this Twitter thread, I tried to forge a connection between the how of the journey—noting both the material and geographical aspects impacting and structuring how people move—and the physical impacts of that journey on the bodies of those on the move. I called attention to the travelers’ tired, blistered feet in an attempt to weave a thread between the material (and political) geographies of the journey and the embodied experiences of those making it. The Twitter thread drew some attention and solicited an invitation to write a short intervention for the small Dutch critical-journalism platform De Nieuwe Reporterwhere it appeared in Dutch with the title: “Dit is waarom media niet moeten schrijven over ‘migrantenstromen’” (“This is why the media should not write about ‘migrant flows’”).

      Time has passed since I wrote the intervention. Since then, the caravan has journeyed to the US-Mexico border. US and Mexican authorities have responded with tear gas and closures, highlighting in clear terms the violence of the border and corresponding mobility governance. This violence is too often obscured by talk of flows: in the intervention, I worked hard to make visible what watery metaphors of ‘flow’ do to shape how we think about migrant mobilities and what is lost in their usage. I attempted to highlight the uneven politics of mobility that is shaped by and made visible through a consideration of what I want to call geoinfrastructuring, alongside the embodied effects of this uneven mobility. Here, in contrast to modernity’s quest for faster, more convenient, more efficient modes of travel to overcome the limits of the body as it encounters and moves through space, the migrant caravan’s mode(s) of travel—walking, stopping, starting, bus hopping, sitting, waiting, sleeping—bring into sharp relief the ways that for those excluded from privileged mobility regimes, the body is in intimate concert with the material world it encounters.

      The remainder of this essay will first reproduce the short intervention I wrote for De Nieuwe Reporter before thinking through more conceptually how this opinion piece relates to scholarly work on mobility and infrastructures.

      What we call things matters (while often invisibilizing how they matter). A Reuters report on the status of the migrant caravan in English from October 21st had the headline “Thousands in U.S.-bound migrant caravan pour into Mexican city”, while two days earlier a report by Reuters had talked about a “bedraggled” migrant “surge” attempting to “breach” the Mexican border. Meanwhile in other news outlets, the watery theme continued with a migrant “storm” in the UK’s Daily Mail, and a “wave” in USA Today. And lest we think this was a something restricted to reporting in the Global North, the Latin American press has not been immune, with Venezuela’s Telesur talking of a “second wave of migration.” Meanwhile in the Dutch language media, De Telegraafwrote of “Grote migrantenstromen trekken naar VS”, the headline handily highlighted in red in case the emergency nature of these “migrantenstromen” was not clear.

      A counterpoint was offered by oneworld.nl, who talked of the dehumanizing effects of such language use. Indeed, what we call things matters, because politicians also echo the language of the media creating a self-re-enforcing migration language. Unsurprisingly Trump has talked of flows in his condemnation of the Honduran migrant caravan, while Mark Rutte earlier this year talked about Europe not being ready for a new “migrantenstroom” (“migrant flow”). However, what we call things also matters as much for what it reveals as what it conceals. The widespread use of watery and other natural metaphors when talking about migration journeys hides both the realities of and the reasons for the people’s journeys. To talk of rivers, streams, floods, and flows masks the experiences of the thousands of people who are walking thousands of kilometers. They are walking along roads, up hills and across borders; they are tired and hungry, and their feet hurt. Many are travelling with children as people are leaving lives of poverty and deadly gang violence and looking for a safe future in the United States. Just as the British-Somali refugee poet Warshan Shire urges us to consider that “No one would put their children in a boat unless the water is safer than the land”, in the case of the Honduran migrant caravan it’s very unlikely that anyone would walk thousands of kilometers unless the road was safer than their homes.

      One of those travelling is Orellana, an unemployed domestic worker travelling with her two five-year-old grandsons. She declared she had no choice after the boys’ father was murdered and she “[Could not] feed them anymore”, and she is too old to get a job herself. Orellana has decided to try and get to Texas where her daughter, who migrated three years before, now lives.

      What the watery metaphors also hide is the agency of Hondurans like Orellana in attempting the journey and what the decision to travel in such a large group tells us about the realities of the journey itself. While the migrant caravan is walking to ostensible safety, the northbound journeys of Central American migrants through Mexico to the US are not safe. Many thousands attempt this journey every year, encountering detention and extortion by the police and drug cartels, physical violence, rape, and death. The policing of Mexico’s southern border, undertaken with the support of the US, does not only capture migrants in its net. Mexicans of indigenous appearance, suspected of being from Guatemala, Honduras or El Salvador because of crude processes of racial profiling, are routinely caught up in and detained in police patrols and at police checkpoints. In all this, women and teenagers are at particular risk. The risks of the journey are the reasons underpinning the choice of the Hondurans to travel in a caravan—the idea being that the greater the number of people, the lower the risk of capture and deportation, of physical harm from police, cartels and criminals along the route, and of being stopped by border controls. Moving in a caravan also removes the need to employ the services of smugglers who are often linked to cartels and are a source of the violence migrants face. In other words, people are reclaiming the right to move without paying large sums of money.

      Talk of “flows” also hides the way the journeys of migrants are shaped by the infrastructures of their travel. Roads direct migrants in particular directions and border controls interrupt their movement and divert them into using different paths. Unlike a river, they are not a force of nature that can make their way to their metaphorical sea by the quickest and most efficient route possible. The obstacles migrants encounter on their journey are not only natural obstacles like rivers, deserts, or mountains, but also human-made obstacles like police roadblocks, border control points and migrant prisons.

      And yet in the face of all this, they still walk. Faced with the difficulties of the journey and the promise of repatriation, some have already returned to Honduras. But many in the caravan have now crossed two national borders, with Guatemala and Mexico. Their numbers are growing as many people see the strength in numbers and the difficulty, both practically and politically, of preventing passage. Many others still are left sleeping on bridges, hungry and thirsty with little access to sanitation or shelter as they wait to enter Mexico. And yet they walk, they wait, and more join because “It’s even worse in Honduras.”

      In my work on humanitarian borderwork I have begun to argue for a deeper focus on the ways infrastructures and geographies intimately shape not only the risks faced by those excluded from safe and legal travel but also how the excluded move (Pallister-Wilkins, 2018, 2019). This builds on William Walter’s earlier demand that studies of migration take the journey seriously:

      The vehicle, its road, its route—these particular materialities are not entirely missing from scholarship on migration politics. But… they rarely feature as a central focus in theorisation and investigation of migration worlds. This is surely a paradox. All migrations involve journeys and those journeys are more often than not mediated by complex transport infrastructures, authorities and norms of transportation. Granted, in many instances those journeys may be rather uneventful and not in the least bit life-changing or politically salient… Nevertheless, in many other instances, the journey is politically salient, perhaps even a life-or-death experience. (2015: 270)

      Alongside taking the journey seriously, Mimi Sheller’s important work has shone a light on systems of ‘motility’, differential mobility capability, and mobility justice (2018) and Vicki Squire has drawn our attention to the biophysical role of deserts and seas in governing mobility (2016). Therefore, a focus on the journey and differential mobility capabilities challenges the watery metaphor of ‘flow,’ compelling us instead to understand how infrastructures and geographies—roads, bridges, deserts, mountains, border controls, police patrols, walls and fences, time and speed — make possible and condition particular types of mobility with embodied effects.

      Infrastructures here, following Lauren Berlant (2016), are defined by use (and movement) coming to pattern social life. They are what organizes life. As such they are agents in the (re)production of social inequalities (Donovan, 2015) and uneven geographies (Chua et. al, 2018). Alongside the way infrastructures pattern social life, consideration of infrastructuring offers a dynamic way of understanding the how of unequal mobility beyond the crafting of policy, enabling a greater consideration of infrastructure as something dynamic and mutable in the context of use. Infrastructures are not all encountered or utilized equally. A road driven is not the same as a road walked. Moreover, in thinking about context and use, Deborah Cowen (2014) has drawn our attention to the ways infrastructure, such as complex systems of just-in-time logistics, not only works to overcome the limits of space and time, but also offers opportunities for disruption and resistance. The essays in the “Investigating Infrastructures” Forum on this site show the role of infrastructures in crafting and reinforcing uneven geographies.

      With this in mind, I also want to consider the role of physical geography as an active agent working along with border, policing, and transport infrastructures in conditioning the how of unequal mobility as well as the embodied risks migrants face. The exclusive and privileged nature of various (safer) transport infrastructures and the growth of differential mobility regimes results in physical geographies and their attendant risks coming to matter to what Karen Barad would call matter (2003), in this instance to human life and well-being. In these instances, physical geographies have been politically made to matter through various policies underpinning mobility access and they come to matter at the level of the individual migrant bodies that encounter them.

      Infrastructural projects—roads, railways, and shipping routes—are all attempts to overcome the limits of physical geography. Planes and their attendant infrastructures of airports, airlines, runways and air traffic control make the traversal of great distance and the geographies of seas, mountains, and deserts possible and less risky. By making air travel exclusive, not through cost alone but through border regimes that deny access to those without the correct documentation, physical geography comes to matter more. Those seeking life through movement are increasingly prevented from accessing such transport. Thus, at the level of individual bodies and the journeys they make, the physical geography of the route comes to play a greater constitutive role. As Mimi Sheller makes clear, “There is a relation between personal bodily vulnerabilities, the struggle for shelter, the splintering of infrastructural systems, and the management of citizenship regimes and borders” (2018: xiv).

      Infrastructural projects such as roads, railways, and runways suggest attempts to overcome the limits of physical geography and yet are also intimately shaped by them. Mountain roads, for example, contain hairpin bends necessitated by the gradient of the slopes they cross. Bridges span rivers where such engineering can practically and safely take place. Meanwhile, a lack of roads or bridges impedes mobility, encouraging migrants to use boats, to swim, or like the Rohingya’s journeys from Rakhine into Bangladesh, to use the small narrow dykes that have shaped the environment of the wetlands of the Naf River delta.

      As John Law noted in his study of the possibilities that the Portuguese ship created for long distance control and an apparent human-technological triumph over space, the physical geographies of the ocean—“the winds and currents”—are an ever-present actor working in concert with infrastructure networks (1986). According to Law, it is not possible to think about these infrastructural networks and the social, political, and economic forces they represent and bring into being without a consideration of what he calls the natural, or what I am calling physical geography. The nature of concern to Law is very different from the natural world evoked by discussion of migrant flows and the wide variety of attendant watery metaphors. In these discussions, flow is a description. For Law, flow would have and perform a relational role. This relational ontology becomes even more politically pressing when the natural has embodied effects on the lives of migrants bound up in such a relational system. Put simply, the physical geography alongside infrastructures affects how people move and the risks they encounter on their journeys.

      Therefore, geoinfrastructuring, I argue, is important in considering how people exercise mobility. Geoinfrastructuring both conditions the journey of the migrant caravan and creates particular embodied effects, such as sore feet, blisters, joint pain, sprained muscles, and dehydration. Moments of enforced waiting on the journey, such as at border crossing points, generate their own embodied risks due to poor sanitation, lack of access to clean drinking water, and exposure to extreme weather, which in turn creates the need for as well as the time and space for limited humanitarian relief (see Pallister-Wilkins, 2018). However, as the migrant caravan attests, geoinfrastructure also creates the possibility for a (conditioned) resistance to exclusionary political-material mobility regimes. Infrastructural spaces and systems—roads, transit areas, buses and pick-up trucks—are being claimed and used by Honduran migrants in their journeys to the United States. In Europe and in the context of my own research, one of the key architects of Médecins Sans Frontiéres’ Search and Rescue operations has impressed upon me the important interrelation of the sea, infrastructures of surveillance and visibility, and the boat in making possible humanitarian efforts not only at saving lives but in addition the “activist” element of such search and rescue. Here, the dynamics of the sea, in concert with European border surveillance systems such as EUROSUR and the boat, make possible certain political interventions and disruptions that, it is argued, are not possible in other environments such as the Sahara and speak to Law’s idea of a relational ontology.[1]

      Away from the migrant caravan and my own research on search and rescue in the Mediterranean, I have become interested in exploring the relationship between physical, infrastructural and border geographies in how migrants choose to cross the Alps from Italy into France. These crossings occur at only a few points along the border, at crossing points that are manageable to migrants with differential mobility capabilities. Importantly, they are less risky than other crossing points due to lower altitude, better transport connections and a reduced police presence, such as at the Col de l’Échelle between the Italian town of Bardonecchia and the French city of Briançon. People do not cross through these places for lack of other routes. The town of Bardonecchia, for example, is located at the Italian entrance of both the Fréjus tunnel linking France and Italy, carrying motor vehicles under the Alps, and the older Mont Cenis tunnel linking France and Italy by rail. The entry point to the Fréjus and the trains using the Mont Cenis are heavily policed. The policing of the Fréjus tunnel is further made easier by traffic having to stop and pass through toll booths. And yet, the presence of the railway and its attendant station in Bardonecchia means that it is relatively accessible for migrants travelling from the rest of Italy. Its proximity to the French border, only 7km and a relatively gentle walk away, means that this particular border region has become a particularly popular passage point for migrants wanting to leave Italy for France.

      I have come to know this region well through its additional and complimentary infrastructures of tourism. The cross-border region is a popular holiday destination for people like me who are drawn there by the geoinfrastructure that makes for excellent cycling terrain. This tourism infrastructure for both summer and winter Alpine sports and outdoor activities means that the area is comparatively heavily populated for the Hautes-Alpes. This has resulted in services capable and willing to assist migrants with their journeys, from dedicated and well-equipped teams of mountain rescuers, to a large hospital specializing in mountain injuries, and solidarity activists offering food and shelter. In this region of the Hautes-Alpes, geoinfrastructuring, like with the migrant caravan, shapes not only how and why migrants make their journeys in particular ways: it also facilitates the exercising of political resistance to exclusionary border regimes by both migrants themselves and those who stand in solidarity with them.

      With this short essay I have attempted to challenge the language of flows and in so doing drawn attention to the constitutive role of infrastructures and their embodied effects in how migrants, excluded from safe and legal forms of transportation, exercise mobility. I have argued that as political geographers we should also consider the role of physical geography in making a difference in these journeys that occur in concert with roads, rivers, mountains, deserts, tunnels, bridges and vehicles. These physical geographies, as Vicki Squire argues, have biophysical effects. This is not to normalize the very real bodily dangers faced by migrants in their journeys by seeking to lay blame at the foot of the mountain, so to speak. Instead, it is to suggest that these physical geographies come to matter and have very real effects because of the political role ascribed to them by human decision-making concerned with (re)producing unequal mobility. It is to make the case for what I have termed here geoinfrastructuring—the assemblage of physical, material and political geographies—that shape how migrants move and the risks they face.

      http://societyandspace.org/2019/02/21/walking-not-flowing-the-migrant-caravan-and-the-geoinfrastructuring

    • Quand les caravanes passent…

      Depuis l’intégration du Mexique à l’Espace de libre-échange nord- américain, la question migratoire est devenue centrale dans ses relations avec les États-Unis, dans une perspective de plus en plus sécuritaire. Sa frontière méridionale constitue le point de convergence des migrations des pays du sud vers les pays nord-américains. Les caravanes de migrants, qui traversent son territoire depuis la fin 2018, traduisent une façon de rompre avec la clandestinité autant qu’une protection contre les périls de la traversée ; elles sont aussi l’expression d’une geste politique.

      Le Mexique occupe dans la stratégie de sécurisation des frontières américaines un rôle pivot, à la fois un État tampon et un relais du processus d’externalisation du contrôle des frontières dans l’espace méso-américain. Si l’attention médiatique tend à se focaliser sur les 3 000 kilomètres de frontières qu’il partage avec son voisin du nord, sa frontière sud catalyse les enjeux géopolitiques du contrôle des flux dans la région.

      Depuis son intégration à l’espace de libre-échange nord-américain au cours des années 1990, le Mexique a vu s’imposer la question migratoire dans ses relations diplomatiques avec les États-Unis. L’objectif d’une régulation du passage des frontières par le blocage des flux illicites, de biens ou de personnes, est devenu un élément central de la coopération bilatérale, a fortiori après le 11 septembre 2001. La frontière sud, longue de près de 1 000 kilomètres, circonscrit l’espace de libre circulation formé en 2006 par le Nicaragua, le Honduras, le Salvador et le Guatemala. Elle constitue le point de convergence des migrations en direction des pays nord-américains.
      Faire frontière

      Dans les années 2000, les autorités mexicaines ont donc élaboré une stratégie de surveillance fondée sur la mise en place de cordons sécuritaires [1], depuis l’isthme de Tehuantepec jusqu’à la frontière sud, bordée par une zone forestière difficilement contrôlable. Responsable de l’examen du droit au séjour, l’Institut national de migration (INM) est devenu en 2005 une « agence de sécurité nationale » : la question migratoire est depuis lors envisagée dans cette optique sécuritaire. Des « centres de gestion globale du transit frontalier » [centro de atención integral al tránsito fronterizo] ont été construits à une cinquantaine de kilomètres de la frontière sud. Chargées de filtrer les marchandises comme les individus, ces mégastructures regroupent des agents de l’armée, de la marine, de la police fédérale, de la migration et du bureau fédéral du Procureur général. En 2014, la surveillance des déplacements a été confortée par l’adoption du « Programme Frontière sud », à l’issue d’une rencontre entre le président Peña Nieto et son homologue américain, mécontent de l’inaction du Mexique face à l’afflux de mineurs à leur frontière commune. Derrière le vernis humanitaire de la protection des personnes, la détention et l’expulsion sont érigées en objectifs politiques. Fin 2016, les placements en rétention avaient augmenté de 85 %, les expulsions doublé. Proche de la frontière guatémaltèque, le centre de rétention de Tapachula, décrit comme le plus moderne et le plus grand d’Amérique centrale [2], concentre près de la moitié des expulsions organisées par le Mexique. Avec ceux des États de Tabasco et de Veracruz, ce sont plus de 70 % des renvois qui sont mis en œuvre depuis cette région. De multiples rapports associatifs font état de l’augmentation des drames humains liés à ces dispositifs qui aboutissent, de fait, à une clandestinisation de la migration et rendent les routes migratoires plus dangereuses.

      La migration a également été incorporée aux multiples programmes américains de coopération visant à lutter contre les trafics illicites, la criminalité transfrontalière et le terrorisme. Ces programmes n’ont eu d’autre effet que de faire des personnes en route vers le nord une nouvelle manne financière pour les organisations criminelles qui contrôlent ces espaces de circulation transnationale. La traversée de la frontière américaine guidée par un passeur coûterait 3 500 dollars, les prix variant en fonction de la « méthode ». Le passage par la « grande porte », à l’un des points officiels d’entrée sur le territoire américain, s’achèterait 18 000 dollars. Mais les cartels recrutent aussi des migrant·es pour convoyer plusieurs dizaines de kilos de drogue sur le territoire américain, des « mules » payées 2 000 dollars si elles y parviennent. L’extorsion, la prise d’otages et le travail forcé des migrant·es en transit vers les États-Unis figurent parmi les pratiques des cartels, avec parfois la complicité des agents de l’État. En 2011, des personnes en instance d’expulsion ont ainsi été vendues par des fonctionnaires de l’INM au cartel des Zetas contre 400 dollars par personne.

      Se donnant entre autres objectifs de « construire la frontière du xxiesiècle », l’Initiative Mérida a investi plus de 2,8 milliards de dollars depuis 2007 dans le renforcement d’infrastructures, la technologie du contrôle – dont l’échange avec la partie nord-américaine des données biométriques des personnes placées en rétention – et l’organisation d’opérations policières à la frontière avec le Guatemala. Ce programme finance aussi l’expulsion de ressortissants centraméricains ou extracontinentaux par le Mexique (20 millions de dollars en 2018).

      Dans une certaine mesure, ces dispositifs font système, au point que certains chercheurs [3] parlent du corridor migratoire mexicain comme d’une « frontière verticale ».
      Des caravanes pas comme les autres

      Du premier groupe constitué d’une centaine de personnes parties du Honduras en octobre 2018 aux divers collectifs formés en cours de route vers la frontière nord-américaine par des milliers d’individus venant d’Amérique centrale, de la Caraïbe et, dans une moindre mesure, des continents africain et asiatique, ce qu’il est désormais convenu d’appeler des « caravanes de migrants » constitue un phénomène inédit.

      Dans l’histoire centraméricaine, la notion renvoie à une pluralité de mobilisations, telle celle des mères de migrant·es disparu·es au cours de la traversée du Mexique, qui chaque année parcourent cette route à la recherche de leurs fils ou filles. Le Viacrucis migrante, « chemin de croix du migrant », réunit annuellement des sans-papiers centraméricain·es et des organisations de droits de l’Homme afin de réclamer la poursuite des auteur·es de violations des droits des migrant·es en transit au Mexique, séquestrations, racket, assassinats, viols, féminicides, exploitation ou tous autres abus.

      La première caravane de migrants du Honduras et celles qui lui ont succédé s’inscrivent dans une autre démarche. Elles traduisent une façon de rompre avec la clandestinité imposée par les politiques autant qu’une forme de protection contre les périls de la traversée. Le nombre des marcheurs a créé un nouveau rapport de force dans la remise en cause des frontières. Entre octobre 2018 et février 2019, plus de 30 000 personnes réunies en caravanes ont été enregistrées à la frontière sud du Mexique mais, chaque jour, elles sont des milliers à entrer clandestinement. Entre janvier et mars 2019, les États-Unis ont recensé plus de 234 000 entrées sur leur territoire, le plus souvent hors des points d’entrée officiels.

      Ces caravanes ont aussi révélé un phénomène jusqu’alors peu visible : l’exode centraméricain. Depuis les années 2000, près de 400 000 personnes par an, originaires du Honduras, du Salvador, du Guatemala, migrent aux États- Unis. Fuyant des États corrompus et autoritaires, une violence endé- mique et multiforme, dont celle des maras (gangs) et des cartels, ainsi que les effets délétères du modèle extractiviste néolibéral, elles quittent des pays qui, selon elles, n’ont rien à leur offrir.

      Ces migrations ne doivent pas être appréhendées de façon monolithique : les caravanes constituent une juxtaposition de situations diverses ; les groupes se font et se transforment au cours de la route, au gré des attentes de chacun. Certains ont préféré régulariser leur situation dès l’entrée sur le territoire mexicain quand d’autres ont choisi de pousser jusqu’à la frontière nord, d’où ils ont engagé des démarches auprès des autorités mexicaines et américaines.
      Du Nord au Sud, la fabrique d’une « crise migratoire »

      En réaction à ces différentes mobilités, le Mexique et les États-Unis ont déployé leurs armées, le premier oscillant entre un accueil humanitaire ad hoc, des pratiques de contention et l’expulsion, ou la facilitation des traversées en direction des États-Unis. Les mesures adoptées tant par les États-Unis que par le Mexique ont participé à l’engorgement des frontières, du sud au nord, créant ainsi la situation de « crise migratoire » qu’ils prétendaient prévenir.

      Sollicité par le gouvernement mexicain avant même l’arrivée de la première caravane sur le territoire des États-Unis, le Haut-Commissariat pour les réfugiés (HCR) a obtenu des fonds de ces derniers pour faciliter l’accès à la procédure d’asile mexicaine. Les États-Unis ont également mobilisé l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations (OIM) pour qu’elle mette en place des campagnes de sensibilisation sur les risques de la traversée, et d’encouragement au retour. Écartant d’emblée la revendication des marcheurs de pouvoir solliciter collectivement l’asile à la frontière américaine, les agents du HCR ont insisté sur la complexité des procédures et la faible probabilité d’obtenir l’asile aux États-Unis, confortant le discours porté par l’OIM. Les organisations mexi- caines de défense des droits des étrangers ne se sont pas saisies du droit comme d’une arme politique de soutien à l’appel des marcheurs à une libre circulation au Mexique et au refuge pour tous aux États-Unis. L’ensemble des discours en direction des caravanes ont convergé en faveur de la promotion de l’installation au Mexique. « À chaque fois, on nous parle de la détention, de l’expulsion… Mais nous, on est là et on va continuer d’avancer ! » a observé l’un des marcheurs.

      Depuis plusieurs années, les obstacles à la traversée clandestine du Mexique ont contribué à l’accroissement des demandes d’asile qui sont, avec la carte de visiteur pour raison humanitaire délivrée par l’INM, l’unique option de régularisation. Entre 2013 et 2018, le nombre de requêtes a augmenté de 2 332 %, passant de 1 269 à 29 600. Cette tendance se poursuit. Au premier semestre 2019, la Commission mexicaine d’aide aux réfugiés (Comar) – équivalent de l’Ofpra français – enregistrait une hausse de 182 % par rapport à la même période en 2018, sans que n’augmentent ses moyens. Elle ne disposait en 2017 que de 28 officiers de protection chargés d’instruire les dossiers. L’année suivante, le HCR a soutenu le recrutement de 29 autres officiers tandis que le gouvernement votait une diminution du budget alloué à la Comar. En février 2018, la Commission nationale des droits de l’Homme révélait que des demandes d’asile déposées en 2016 n’avaient toujours pas été examinées, de même que près de 60 % des requêtes formées en 2017. Aux 33 650 dossiers en attente de traitement, se sont ajoutées plus de 12 700 demandes depuis le début 2019.

      Pour éviter d’être expulsées, les personnes n’ont d’autre choix que de « faire avec » ce système en pleine déliquescence. En décembre 2018, il fallait compter jusqu’à six semaines avant de pouvoir déposer une requête à la Comar de Tapachula, et six mois à l’issue de l’audition pour obtenir une réponse. En attendant, les postulant·es doivent, chaque semaine, attester du maintien de leur demande et, pour survivre, s’en remettre à l’assistance humanitaire offerte dans les lieux d’hébergement tenus par des ecclésiastiques. Conséquence de cette précarisation croissante, le taux d’abandon des demandes d’asile déposées à la Comar dans l’État du Chiapas atteignait 43% en 2017. Nombreux sont ceux et celles qui sollicitent l’asile et le visa humanitaire dans le même temps et, une fois le second obtenu, partent chercher un travail au nord du pays. Afin de réduire l’abandon des demandes d’asile, le HCR verse un pécule durant quatre mois aux personnes jugées « vulnérables », une appréciation subordonnée à son budget. En plus des pointages hebdomadaires auprès des administrations, les bénéficiaires doivent chaque mois attester de leur présence au bureau du HCR pour recevoir ce pécule. Dans cette configuration, la distinction entre les logiques sécuritaire et humanitaire se brouille. Parmi les personnes rencontrées à Tapachula, nombreuses sont celles qui ont souligné l’artifice d’une politique d’assistance qui n’en porte que le nom, à l’exemple de Guillermo, originaire du Salvador : « Pour demander des papiers aujourd’hui, il faut passer d’abord par la mafia des organisations. Tout le monde te parle, chacun te propose son petit discours. Cela me fait penser aux prestidigitateurs au cirque, c’est une illusion.[...] Le HCR dit que la procédure d’asile est longue et qu’on peut en profiter pour faire des formations pour apprendre un nouveau métier [...]. Mais déjà, la plupart ici n’a pas l’argent pour ça et se bat pour vivre et trouver un logement ! Ensuite moi, je dois aller signer chaque mardi à la Comar et chaque vendredi à l’INM, le HCR me propose deux jours de cours de langue par semaine pour apprendre l’anglais, mais ça veut dire quoi ? Cela veut dire qu’on peut juste aller travailler un jour par semaine ?! [...] Ils te font miroiter des choses, ils t’illusionnent ! [...] Le HCR te dit : "Tu ne peux pas sortir du Chiapas." La Comar te dit : "Tu ne peux pas sortir de Tapachula." L’INM te dit : "Si on te chope, on t’expulse." »

      La formation d’un espace de contention au bord de l’implosion au sud du Mexique fait écho à la situation de blocage à la frontière nord du pays, renforcée en novembre 2018 par le plan « Reste au Mexique », mal renommé depuis « Protocole de protection de la migration ». Les États-Unis, qui obligeaient déjà les demandeurs d’asile à s’enregistrer et attendre à la frontière, ont unilatéralement décidé de contraindre les non-Mexicains à retourner au Mexique durant le traitement de leur demande d’asile, à moins qu’ils ne démontrent les risques qu’ils y encourraient.
      Frontières et corruption : une rébellion globale

      Ces derniers mois, les entraves et dénis des droits ont engendré de nouvelles formes de mobilisation des migrant·es originaires de la Caraïbe, d’Afrique et d’Asie, jusqu’alors peu visibles. Les personnes en quête de régularisation se heurtent à la corruption qui gangrène les arcanes de l’État : toute démarche, du franchissement de la frontière en passant par la possibilité d’entrer dans les locaux de l’INM jusqu’à l’obtention d’un formulaire, est sujette à extorsion. La délivrance de l’oficio de salida, permettant à certain·es [4] de traverser le pays en direction des États-Unis, est devenue l’objet d’un racket en 2018. Les agents de l’INM disposent d’intermédiaires chargés de récolter l’argent auprès des migrant·es pour la délivrance de ce sauf-conduit, qui donne une vingtaine de jours pour parvenir à la frontière nord. Les montants varient en fonction des nationalités : un Cubain devra payer 400 dollars, un Pakistanais 200 quand un jeune Congolais parviendra à négocier 70 dollars, 100 étant demandés aux autres Africains. Pour tenter de contourner ce système, des personnes sont restées des journées entières devant l’entrée du centre de rétention, dans l’espoir d’y accéder : le plus souvent, seules les familles finissaient par entrer. En mars 2019, des Cubains, exaspérés d’attendre depuis plusieurs mois, ont tenté d’entrer en force à la délégation de l’INM. Rejoints par des personnes originaires de Haïti, d’Amérique centrale, d’Afrique et d’Asie, ils ont été plus de 2 000 à faire le siège des locaux de l’INM, avant de décider, après plusieurs semaines d’attente vaine, de former la caravane centraméricaine et de la Caraïbe vers la frontière nord.

      Aujourd’hui, l’élan de solidarité qui avait accueilli la première caravane de Honduriens est retombé. Celles et ceux qui continuent leur route en direction du Mexique et des États-Unis ne bénéficient ni de la même couverture médiatique ni du même traitement politique. Les promesses gouvernementales d’accueil sont restées lettre morte. En janvier 2019, l’INM annonçait avoir délivré 11 823 cartes de visiteurs pour raisons humanitaires au cours du mois. En mars, on n’en comptait plus que 1 024. Outre une recrudescence des expulsions, un nouveau « plan de contention » prévoit le renforcement de la présence policière dans l’isthme de Tehuantepec. Cette stratégie se déploie aussi par-delà le territoire puisque les demandes de visa humanitaire devraient désormais se faire depuis le Honduras, le Salvador et le Guatemala.

      Si certains voient dans les caravanes un nouveau paradigme migratoire, une chose est sûre : la contestation des frontières et la défiance envers les États portées par ces mouvements sont l’expression d’une geste politique longtemps déniée à une migration jusqu’alors confinée au silence.

      https://www.gisti.org/spip.php?article6226

    • Primer vuelo “exprés” con 129 hondureños retornados de México

      Tras meses de espera en la frontera norte de México, los hondureños solicitantes de asilo en Estados Unidos comienzan a desesperarse y están pidiendo retornar de forma voluntaria al país, tal y como lo hicieron 129 compatriotas que llegaron hoy por vía aérea a #San_Pedro_Sula.

      El vuelo, organizado por la embajada de Honduras en México y financiado por la Organización Internacional para las Migraciones (#OIM), salió de la ciudad de #Matamoros (Tamaulipas), donde los hondureños llevaban varios meses de espera.

      El embajador de Honduras en México, Alden Rivera Montes, informó que los retornados venían en 55 grupos familiares, constituidos por 32 hombres, 30 mujeres y 65 menores acompañados de sus padres; además, retornaron dos adultos solos.

      Rivera Montes detalló que el nuevo Consulado Móvil de Honduras en Matamoros expidió los salvoconductos para que los compatriotas pudieran salir de México mediante la modalidad de Retorno Voluntario Asistido (AVR) a través de la OIM.

      Aseguró que debido a los altos índices de violencia de esa ciudad mexicana se están haciendo las gestiones para que los hondureños que son devueltos por las autoridades estadounidenses a México, sean trasladados a puntos fronterizos menos vulnerables.

      De la misma manera las autoridades de la embajada de Honduras en México anunciaron que los procesos de atención a los migrantes en situación de espera que deseen regresar voluntariamente a Honduras seguirán abiertos durante los próximos meses y que pronto se habilitará esta misma opción de retorno voluntario desde Nuevo Laredo, Ciudad Juárez y Tijuana.

      ATENCIÓN DIGNA

      El vuelo llegó al aeropuerto sampedrano a las 3:00 de la tarde y posteriormente los compatriotas fueron trasladados Centro de Atención para la Niñez y Familias Migrantes Belén, ubicado en San Pedro Sula.

      En Belén los compatriotas fueron recibidos con un plato de sopa caliente; posteriormente hicieron el Control Biométrico con personal del Instituto Nacional de Migración (INM) y llenaron una ficha socioeconómica para optar a los diferentes programas de reinserción social y de oportunidades que ofrece el gobierno.

      Los menores retornados también reciben atención médica y psicológica; posteriormente, si son menores no acompañados, un grupo de especialistas de la Dirección de Niñez, Adolescencia y Familia (Dinaf) les brinda seguimiento para garantizar que se cumplan sus derechos.

      Asimismo, con el apoyo de la Cruz Roja Hondureña se les brinda una llamada para que puedan comunicarse con sus familiares acá en Honduras, se les proporciona un ticket para que puedan trasladarse a sus lugares de origen y si lo requieren se les brinda un albergue temporal.

      https://www.latribuna.hn/2019/10/09/primer-vuelo-expres-con-129-hondurenos-retornados-de-mexico
      #renvois #expulsions #réfugiés_honduriens #IOM #retour_volontaire

    • Honduran Migrants Return from Mexico with IOM support

      The International Organization for Migration (IOM) organized a charter flight for 126 migrants who expressed their decision to return voluntarily to their country of origin. Fifty-three family groups comprising 33 men, 29 women and 64 children flew on Wednesday (09/10) from the city of Matamoros (Tamaulipas, Mexico) to San Pedro Sula (Honduras).

      IOM deployed all efforts and collaborated closely with the Honduran Embassy in Mexico and with the National Migration Institute of Mexico to arrange for this first charter flight in its Assisted Voluntary Return (AVR) programme.

      In the days preceding departure, with the support of its Shelter Support programme and local partners, IOM provided migrants with accommodation and food. According to its internal protocols, IOM ensured that all migrants were made aware of all processes so that all decisions could be taken based on complete information. Further, IOM verifies that persons who express a desire to return do not face any immediate risks upon arrival.

      “I made the decision to return to my country because of the situation I faced with my son; because promises made to us by the ‘coyotes’ are not fulfilled, and we risk our lives along the way,” said a young mother on board the flight. “When we finally crossed the border into the USA, they took us back to Matamoros in Mexico, where I spent eight days in a shelter. There, we saw IOM and we learned about different options. But I want to see my other daughter now, so I decided to return home.”

      “Something I want to say is that if I ever migrate again, I will look for information before leaving, because many people simply give money which we do not really have to ‘coyotes’ or guides, who takes advantage of us,” said another Honduran migrant who decided to return due to the difficult conditions in the Mexican border city. “After considering our options, we found the shelter supported by IOM who helped us out by giving us food and a place to stay, and the possibility of return.”

      “IOM has been providing support to shelters to increase their capacity along with the option of assisted voluntary returns by bus and commercial flights over the last months,” explained Christopher Gascon, IOM Chief of Mission in Mexico. “This is the first return by charter flight, which offers a better service to migrants who want to return home. We hope to provide many more charter flights in the weeks to come.”

      The IOM Assisted Voluntary Return (AVR) programme offers an alternative for an orderly, safe and dignified voluntary return for migrants. IOM offers humanitarian assistance to those who cannot or do not wish to remain in Mexico. Voluntariness is a key principle of IOM #AVR programmes worldwide.


      https://www.iom.int/news/honduran-migrants-return-mexico-iom-support

  • Il decreto immigrazione cancellerà lo Sprar, «sistema modello» di accoglienza

    Le scelte del governo: stretta su rifugiati e nuove cittadinanze. Vie accelerate per costruire nuovi centri per i rimpatri. Permessi umanitari cancellati. Hotspot chiusi per 30 giorni anche i richiedenti asilo.

    Permessi umanitari cancellati. Stretta su rifugiati e nuove cittadinanze. Vie accelerate per costruire nuovi centri per i rimpatri. Possibilità di chiudere negli hotspot per 30 giorni anche i richiedenti asilo. Trattenimento massimo nei centri prolungato da 90 a 180 giorni. E poi addio alla rete Sprar. I 17 articoli e 4 capi dell’ultima bozza del decreto migranti, che il governo si prepara a varare, promettono di ridisegnare il volto del «pianeta immigrazione». Soprattutto sul fronte accoglienza, abrogando di fatto un modello, quello dello Sprar, che coinvolge oggi oltre 400 comuni ed è considerato un modello in Europa.

    A denunciarlo è l’Associazione studi giuridici sull’immigrazione (Asgi): «Cancellare l’unico sistema pubblico di accoglienza che funziona appare come uno dei più folli obiettivi politici degli ultimi anni, destinato in caso di attuazione a produrre enormi conseguenze negative in tutta Italia, tanto nelle grandi città che nei piccoli centri, al Nord come al Sud».

    Ventitremila migranti accolti. «Lo Sprar - spiega a Repubblica Gianfranco Schiavone, vicepresidente dell’Asgi - è un sistema di accoglienza e protezione sia dei richiedenti asilo che dei titolari di protezione internazionale e umanitaria nato nel lontano 2002 con le modifiche al testo unico immigrazione della cosiddetta Bossi-Fini. Nei sedici anni della sua esistenza lo Sprar si è enormemente rafforzato passando da alcune decine di comuni coinvolti e meno di duemila posti di accoglienza nel 2002, ai circa ventitremila posti attuali con coinvolgimento di oltre 400 comuni».

    Un modello in Europa. «In ragione dei suoi successi nel gestire l’accoglienza dei richiedenti asilo e dei rifugiati in modo ordinato con capacità di coinvolgimento dei territori, lo Sprar è sempre stato considerato da tutti i governi di qualunque colore politico il fiore all’occhiello del sistema italiano, da presentare in Europa in tutti gli incontri istituzionali, anche per attenuare agli occhi degli interlocutori, le gravi carenze generali dell’Italia nella gestione dei migranti».

    Il ruolo centrale dei comuni. «Il presupposto giuridico su cui si fonda lo Sprar è tanto chiaro quanto aderente al nostro impianto costituzionale: nella gestione degli arrivi e dell’accoglienza dei migranti allo Stato spettano gli aspetti che richiedono una gestione unitaria (salvataggio, arrivi e prima accoglienza, piano di distribuzione, definizione di standard uniformi), ma una volta che il migrante ha formalizzato la sua domanda di asilo la gestione effettiva dei servizi di accoglienza, protezione sociale, orientamento legale e integrazione non spetta più allo Stato, che non ha le competenze e l’articolazione amministrativa per farlo in modo adeguato, ma va assicurata (con finanziamenti statali) dalle amministrazioni locali, alle quali spettano in generale tutte le funzioni amministrative in materia di servizi socio-assistenziali nei confronti tanto della popolazione italiana che di quella straniera».
    Il business dei grandi centri. «Lo Sprar (gestito oggi da Comuni di centrosinistra come di centrodestra) ha assicurato ovunque una gestione dell’accoglienza concertata con i territori, con numeri contenuti e assenza di grandi concentrazioni, secondo il principio dell’accoglienza diffusa, di buona qualità e orientata ad inserire quanto prima il richiedente asilo nel tessuto sociale. Inoltre lo Sprar ha assicurato un ferreo controllo della spesa pubblica grazie a una struttura amministrativa centrale di coordinamento e all’applicazione del principio della rendicontazione in base alla quale non sono ammessi margini di guadagno per gli enti (associazioni e cooperative) che gestiscono i servizi loro affidati. Invece, da oltre un decennio, il parallelo sistema di accoglienza a diretta gestione statale-prefettizia, salvo isolati casi virtuosi, sprofonda nel caos producendo un’accoglienza di bassa o persino bassissima qualità con costi elevati, scarsi controlli e profonde infiltrazioni della malavita organizzata che ha ben fiutato il potenziale business rappresentato dalla gestione delle grandi strutture (come caserme dismesse, ex aeroporti militari) al riparo dai fastidiosi controlli sulla spesa e sulla qualità presenti nello Sprar».

    La fine dello Sprar. «Cancellare l’unico sistema pubblico di accoglienza che funziona appare come uno dei più folli obiettivi politici degli ultimi anni. Che ne sarà di quelle piccole e funzionanti strutture di accoglienza già esistenti e delle migliaia di operatori sociali, quasi tutti giovani, che con professionalità, lavorano nello Sprar? Qualcuno potrebbe furbescamente sostenere che in fondo lo Sprar non verrebbe interamente abrogato ma trasformato in un sistema di accoglienza dei soli rifugiati e non più anche dei richiedenti asilo i quali rimarrebbero confinati nei centri governativi. È una spiegazione falsa, che omette di dire che proprio la sua caratteristica di sistema unico di accoglienza sia dei richiedenti che dei rifugiati dentro un’unica logica di gestione territoriale è ciò che ha reso lo Sprar un sistema efficiente e razionale. Senza questa unità non rimane più nulla».

    https://www.repubblica.it/solidarieta/immigrazione/2018/09/21/news/migrazioni-206997314/?ref=RHPPLF-BH-I0-C8-P2-S2.4-T1
    #sprar (fin de -) #réfugiés #accueil #migrations #asile #Italie #hébergement #hotspot #décret #détention_administrative #rétention #protection_humanitaire #politique_d'asile #hotspots #it_has_begun #decreto_Salvini

    via @isskein

    • Publié sur la page FB de Filippo Furri :

      « Mi permetto di riprendere il commento della splendida Rosanna Marcato che è stata uno degli attori fondamentali di un percorso di sviluppo e crescita di un modello di accoglienza innovativo, che è alle fondamenta del mio lungo lavoro di ricerca sulla nozione di CITTà RIFUGIO : le città, le comunità locali, dove può realizzarsi la solidarietà concreta e reciproca, sono e devono rimanere luoghi di resistenza ai poteri fascisti che si diffondono dovunque, alla paranoia identitaria costruita a tavolino e iniettata nei cervelli e negli spiriti di spettatori impauriti e paranoici. lo SPRAR nasceva da forme di azione sperimentale «dal basso» e solidale (antifascista, antirazzista), che i governi autoritari e fascisti detestano e combattono.

      «L 11 settembre 2001 Venezia tra le prime città italiane ha dato il via ad un sistema di accoglienza (pna) che si è poi trasformato nello SPRAR. Era il frutto di esperienze di accoglienza, di saperi professionali e della volontà di costruire un sistema di accoglienza territoriale stabile e moderno. Un servizio sociale a tutti gli effetti con regole certe e rendicontazioni esatte e controllabili. Molte delle regole, degli strumenti e delle metodologie di lavoro che ancora funzionano furono elaborati da questa città e dal servizio che dirigevo. 27 anni di lavoro buttati nel cesso. Siate maledetti voi e anche quelli di prima che ci hanno ficcato in questa situazione di merda»

    • Immigrazione, Andrea Maestri: “Nel decreto Salvini tradisce il contratto di governo”

      Andrea Maestri critica il decreto Immigrazione: “Fino a oggi lo Sprar rappresentava un modello pubblico e trasparente nella gestione delle risorse. Chi adesso non rientra nel sistema Sprar non sparisce magicamente dal territorio. E quindi finirà nei Centri d’accoglienza straordinari, i Cas, che sono tutti privati”.

      Dopo aver licenziato l’atteso Dl Immigrazione, il ministro degli Interni Matteo Salvini, a proposito del futuro degli Sprar (Sistema di protezione per richiedenti asilo e rifugiati) e del ridimensionamento di questi centri in favore dei Cas, ha dichiarato: «Il rischio è inesistente, anche qui viene messo ordine in un sistema. Da quando sono ministro abbiamo ridotto di circa 20 mila unità le presenze in tutti questi tipi di strutture. Coloro che sono nel giusto come amministratori locali e come profughi non hanno nulla a che temere da questo provvedimento». In conferenza stampa il ministro degli Interni ha spiegato che il sistema Sprar continua a sopravvivere «limitatamente ai casi di protezione internazionale e dei minori non accompagnati». Ma stanno davvero così le cose? Ne abbiamo parlato con Andrea Maestri, della segreteria nazionale di Possibile.

      Nel contratto di governo si parlava di una diminuzione della capacità d’azione dei privati nella gestione dell’accoglienza. Con questo decreto la promessa non è stata mantenuta.

      Assolutamente no. Credo che qualunque osservatore attento non possa che gridare allo scandalo per questo gravissimo inadempimento, nei confronti soprattutto dei cittadini che hanno creduto nella buona fede di chi ha firmato il contratto di governo. Secondo quel contratto sembrava si volesse puntare sul modello pubblico e diffuso. E’ in corso al contrario una privatizzazione hard del sistema dell’accoglienza. Fino a oggi lo Sprar, anche se in modo minoritario, coinvolgendo gli enti locali, rappresentava un modello pubblico e trasparente nella gestione delle risorse, che venivano rendicontate. Nel momento in cui diventa uno strumento ulteriormente residuale, perché si rivolge solo a coloro che hanno già ottenuto la protezione internazionale – si parla appunto solo dei ‘titolari’, non più di richiedenti asilo che hanno fatto domanda – comincia a riguardare solo un numero ridotto di persone. Ma chi non rientra nel sistema Sprar non sparisce magicamente dal territorio, e quindi bisognerà trovargli un’altra collocazione: cioè nei Centri d’accoglienza straordinari, i Cas, che sono appunto tutti privati, gestiti dalle prefetture, ognuna con modalità diverse di scelta del contraente, con modalità di rendicontazione a macchia di leopardo.

      Ma Salvini sostiene l’opposto, cioè che questo rischio è inesistente.

      Se avesse ragione Salvini aumenterebbe il numero di persone che vivono per strada in una condizione di fragilità sociale umana ed esistenziale: se questi migranti non vengono accolti dai Comuni all’interno degli Sprar, se non se ne occupano le prefetture attarverso gli appaltatori privati all’interno dei Cas, vorrà dire che saranno in giro. Sono persone prive di documenti, che non possono fare contratti regolari di locazione, e nemmeno condividere contratti di locazione con altri. E questo sì che farà aumentare l’irregolarità e la criminalità organizzata e disorganizzata. Con un’unica conseguenza: aumenterà la percezione di insicurezza diffusa.

      Nel testo definitivo, all’articolo 2 è confermata la norma sugli appalti per i lavori nei centri, che possono essere affidati senza previa pubblicazione del bando di gara. E’ in linea con la Costituzione?

      C’è questa norma, ma con alcuni ritocchi. In pratica la procedura negoziata, senza previa pubblicazione di un bando pubblico, può essere fatta per gli appalti sotto soglia comunitaria. Ma se si considera che la soglia comunitaria per lavori, dal primo gennaio 2018 è di circa 5 milioni e mezzo di euro, è evidente che con quella somma più che un Cas si può fare un vero e proprio carcere. Sono importi molto elevati che consentono al governo di fare procedure negoziate, limitando il confronto concorrenziale solo a 5 ditte scelte discrezionalmente dall’amministrazione. Qui c’è una lesione del principio di trasparenza e di concorrenza. Poi hanno scritto che verranno rispettati alcuni criteri, come quello di rotazione, però la sostanza rimane. L’articolo 63 del codice degli Appalti dovrebbe essere limitato a casi del tutto eccezionali: ad esempio una data amministrazione può avere l’interesse a trattare con un determinato soggetto se vuole commissionargli un’opera d’arte per una piazza pubblica; oppure sono previsti casi straordinari d’urgenza, in cui è ammissibile una deroga del genere. Ma non siamo in nessuno di questi due campi. Il governo per i prossimi tre anni sta stabilendo una procedura in deroga alle norme dell’evidenza pubblica. E’ piuttosto grave che si apra una parentesi del genere per un lasso così lungo di tempo. La prima bozza che era circolata negli ambienti dell’Anci, era spudorata, un colpo allo stomaco. Poi ci sarà stato un intervento da parte forse degli uffici ministeriali di Palazzo Chigi, o da parte dello stesso Presidente della Repubblica, che probabilmente hanno limitato un po’ il danno. Ma rimane uno degli aspetti più discutibili e negativi dell’intero provvedimento, perché è proprio uno di quegli ambiti su cui Salvini ha fatto sempre propaganda, contestando il modello del Cara di Mineo. Qui si sta dicendo che il ministero sta prospettando appalti senza evidenza publica. E la Corte Costituzionale se sarà chiamata a intervenire non mancherà di censurare quest’aspetto.

      Dal momento che il testo prevede il raddoppio dei tempi di trattenimento nei Cpr, da 90 a 180 giorni, vuol dire che ne serviranno di più? Qual è la ratio?

      E’ tutto collegato, c’è una coerenza, negativa ovviamente. Nel momento in cui tu trasformi lo Sprar, e lo snaturi, visto che non si tratta più di un sistema di accoglienza per i richiedenti asilo, ma solo per i rifugiati, avremo sempre più persone disperse nel territorio, o nei Cas. E quindi viene privilegiata una gestione emergenziale. Questo farà aumentare il numero delle persone espulse dal sistema, ma non dal territorio. Ci saranno sempre più persone irregolari, e quindi una maggiore necessità di Cpr. Quelli attuali sicuramente non basteranno, quindi se ne dovranno fare degli altri. Per alimentare la narrazione emergenziale si dirà che bisogna fare in fretta, e da qui proviene il vincolo dei tre anni per la deroga per i bandi di gara per le imprese. Quando costruiranno un nuovo centro sarà a quel punto interessante vedere quali aziende verranno chiamate a concorrere, e con quali criteri. Questa è l’economia dell’emergenza, che si deve autoalimentare non solo nella propaganda, ma anche nella sostanza.

      Cosa ne pensa del permesso di soggiorno per atti di valore civile?

      Siamo alla banalità del male. Togliendo la protezione umanitaria come istituto generale, tantissime persone che ricadevano in zone grigie, non facilmente ascrivibili ad una categoria giuridica, ma che rientravano comunque in quell’ambito di tutela ampia dei diritti umani fondamentali, si trovano adesso in difficoltà. E mi riferisco soprattutto a quelle persone vulnerabili, che arrivano in Italia deprivati, fisicamente e moralmente, dopo aver attraversato per esempio l’inferno libico. Adesso per loro non ci sarà più nessuna tutela. Ci sono al loro posto queste sei categorie molto rigide che lasciano poco spazio all’attenzione di cui necessitano invece alcuni casi particolari. Un po’ per caso, come in una lotteria, se uno è in una condizione di irregolarità, ma gli capita di salvare una persona durante un incidente stradale da una macchina in fiamme, o ipotizziamo, con un po’ di fantasia, se quest’immigrato salvasse il ministro Salvini che annaspa in mare, potrebbe ottenere il permesso di soggiorno in virtù della sua azione di valore civile. Mi sembrano delle restrizioni cieche e ottuse che non migliorano minimamente lo stato delle cose. Perché la via maestra sarebbe una riforma organica del testo unico sull’immigrazione, che rendesse trasparenti e legali i canali di ingresso in Italia. Sarebbe fortemente depotenziato il canale della protezione internazionale, che ovviamente è sotto pressione perché non esiste altro modo per entrare in Italia legalmente. Ma ovviamente questo decreto crea un consenso molto più immediato.

      https://www.fanpage.it/immigrazione-maestri-nel-decreto-salvini-tradisce-il-contratto-di-governo

    • Cosa prevede il decreto Salvini su immigrazione e sicurezza

      Il 24 settembre il consiglio dei ministri ha approvato all’unanimità il cosiddetto decreto Salvini su immigrazione e sicurezza. Il decreto si compone di tre titoli: il primo si occupa di riforma del diritto d’asilo e della cittadinanza, il secondo di sicurezza pubblica, prevenzione e contrasto della criminalità organizzata; e l’ultimo di amministrazione e gestione dei beni sequestrati e confiscati alla mafia.

      Nei giorni precedenti all’approvazione si erano diffuse delle voci su possibili dissidi tra i due partiti di maggioranza, Lega e Movimento 5 stelle, ma il ministro dell’interno Matteo Salvini durante la conferenza stampa a palazzo Chigi ha voluto sottolineare che i cinquestelle hanno approvato senza riserve il suo progetto di riforma.

      All’inizio i decreti avrebbero dovuto essere due: il primo sull’immigrazione e il secondo sulla sicurezza e sui beni confiscati alle mafie, poi nel corso dell’ultima settimana sono state fatte delle “limature” e i due decreti sono stati accorpati in un unico provvedimento. Il decreto dovrà ora essere inviato al presidente della repubblica Sergio Mattarella che a sua volta deve autorizzare che la norma sia presentata alle camere. Ecco in sintesi cosa prevede.

      Abolizione della protezione umanitaria. Il primo articolo contiene nuove disposizioni in materia della concessione dell’asilo e prevede di fatto l’abrogazione della protezione per motivi umanitari che era prevista dal Testo unico sull’immigrazione. Oggi la legge prevede che la questura conceda un permesso di soggiorno ai cittadini stranieri che presentano “seri motivi, in particolare di carattere umanitario o risultanti da obblighi costituzionali o internazionali dello stato italiano”, oppure alle persone che fuggono da emergenze come conflitti, disastri naturali o altri eventi di particolare gravità in paesi non appartenenti all’Unione europea.

      La protezione umanitaria può essere riconosciuta anche a cittadini stranieri che non è possibile espellere perché potrebbero essere oggetto di persecuzione nel loro paese (articolo 19 della legge sull’immigrazione) o in caso siano vittime di sfruttamento lavorativo o di tratta. In questi casi il permesso ha caratteristiche differenti. La durata è variabile da sei mesi a due anni ed è rinnovabile. Questa tutela è stata introdotta in Italia nel 1998.

      https://www.internazionale.it/bloc-notes/annalisa-camilli/2018/09/24/decreto-salvini-immigrazione-e-sicurezza

    • Italy: The security decree that makes everyone more insecure

      JRS Italy (Centro Astalli) is concerned about the effects that the new measures introduced by the ’Salvini decree’ on migration and security – unanimously approved on the 24th of September by the Italian Council of Ministers – will have on the lives of migrants and on the social cohesion of the whole country.

      The combination of the Security Decree and the Immigration Decree in a single piece of legislation is misleading as it associates security issues, such as organised crime and terrorism, with the issue of managing migration, in particular forced migration. This is particularly wrong knowing that a completely different legislative approach is needed to deal with migration challenges, particularly in terms of programmes, general management and migrants’ integration.

      For JRS Italy, the reform of the Protection System for Asylum Seekers and Refugees (SPRAR) foreseen by the decree represent a fundamental step back for the Italian reception system. By excluding applicants for international protection from this type of reception the reform is in clear contradiction with the principle that a successful integration process starts from the first reception, as the current Integration Plan for refugees of the Italian Ministry of the Interior also states.

      The SPRAR, recognized as a qualitative system also by international observers, is therefore cut down, despite being the only reception system that guarantees maximum transparency in the management of resources. At the same time, the large collective centres for asylum seekers are strengthened even though the experience on the ground largely shows that, also due to the lack of involvement of local administrations, establishing such centres often encounters resistance and generates social tensions.

      According to Camillo Ripamonti SJ, JRS Italy’s president, “It is a step backwards that does not take into account on the one hand the lives and stories of the people, and on the other hand the work that for decades many humanitarian organizations and civil society have done in close collaboration with the institutions - in particular with local authorities”.

      “Criminalising migrants” – Ripamonti concludes – “is not the right way to deal with the presence of foreign citizens in Italy. Enlarging grey zones that are not regulated by law and making legal procedures less accessible and more complicated, contributes to make our country less secure and more fragile."

      http://jrseurope.org/news_detail?TN=NEWS-20180925084854

    • Decreto Salvini, Mattarella firma ma ricorda a Conte gli obblighi fissati dalla Costituzione

      Il provvedimento è quello che riguarda sicurezza e immigrazione. Il presidente della Repubblica invia al premier una lettera in cui richiama l’articolo 10 della Carta. La replica di Salvini: «ciapa lì e porta a cà». Polemica dei medici sulla norma per i presidi sanitari

      https://www.repubblica.it/politica/2018/10/04/news/dl_sicurezza_mattarella_firma_lettera_a_conte_obblighi_costituzione-20814

    • “I grandi centri di accoglienza vanno superati”. Anzi no. Se Salvini contraddice se stesso

      Ad agosto il ministero dell’Interno ha trasmesso al Parlamento una relazione molto dura sul modello straordinario dei Cas, presentati come “luoghi difficili da gestire e da vivere che attirano gli interessi criminali”. Proponendo l’alternativa dello SPRAR. Ma nonostante le evidenze e gli elogi per il sistema di protezione diffuso, il “decreto immigrazione” va nella direzione opposta.

      grandi centri di accoglienza in Italia sono “luoghi difficili da gestire e da vivere”, producono “effetti negativi oltre che nell’impatto con le collettività locali anche sull’efficienza dei servizi forniti ai migranti”, e per il loro “rilevante onere finanziario” rappresentano una “fonte di attrazione per gli interessi criminali”. Per questo è necessario un loro “alleggerimento progressivo” puntando sulle “progettualità SPRAR” (Sistema di protezione per richiedenti asilo e rifugiati), autentico “ponte necessario all’inclusione e punto di riferimento per le reti territoriali di sostegno”. Garanzia di “processi più solidi e più facili di integrazione”.

      Recita così la “Relazione sul funzionamento del sistema di accoglienza predisposto al fine di fronteggiare le esigenze straordinarie connesse all’eccezionale afflusso di stranieri nel territorio nazionale”, relativa al 2017, trasmessa alla Camera dei deputati il 14 agosto di quest’anno e presentata da un ministro che sostiene pubblicamente il contrario: Matteo Salvini.

      Ad agosto, in quella relazione, il titolare dell’Interno ha infatti riconosciuto come nel circuito SPRAR, “oltre al vitto e alloggio”, venga “garantito ai richiedenti asilo un percorso qualificato, finalizzato alla conquista dell’autonomia individuale” grazie alla “realizzazione di progetti territoriali di accoglienza”. Un modello da promuovere per merito delle “qualità dei servizi resi ai beneficiari che non si limitano ad interventi materiali di base (vitto e alloggio) ma assicurano una serie di attività funzionali alla riconquista dell’autonomia individuale, come l’insegnamento della lingua italiana, la formazione e la qualificazione professionale, l’orientamento legale, l’accesso ai servizi del territorio, l’orientamento e l’inserimento lavorativo, abitativo e sociale, oltre che la tutela psico socio-sanitaria”. Ma ancora nel 2017, su 183.681 migranti ospitati nelle strutture temporanee, hotspot, centri di prima accoglienza e SPRAR, appena 24.471 occupavano l’accoglienza virtuosa del Sistema di protezione per richiedenti asilo e rifugiati. Da lì la corretta intenzione di alleggerire i grandi centri a favore dell’approccio diffuso e integrato.

      Poi però il governo ha smentito se stesso: nonostante le riconosciute qualità dello SPRAR, l’esecutivo ha messo mano alla materia attraverso il recente decreto legge su immigrazione e sicurezza (Dl 113), licenziato dal governo ed emanato dal Capo dello Stato a inizio ottobre, puntando in direzione opposta. In quella che Gianfranco Schiavone, vice presidente dell’Associazione studi giuridici sull’immigrazione, ha definito la “destrutturazione del sistema di accoglienza”.

      L’articolo 12 del “decreto Salvini”, infatti, trasforma l’attuale SPRAR in un sistema per soli titolari di protezione internazionale, un terzo degli attuali accolti, tagliando fuori così i richiedenti asilo, i beneficiari di protezione umanitaria (sostanzialmente abrogata) e coloro che avessero fatto ricorso contro la decisione di diniego delle Commissioni territoriali sulla loro domanda. Per gli esclusi si apriranno le porte degli attuali centri governativi di prima accoglienza o dei centri di accoglienza straordinaria (CAS), proprio quelli di cui la relazione presentata dal ministro Salvini, poche settimane prima, auspicava il superamento.
      “La riforma pare fotografare la realtà della prassi precedente al decreto legge -ha evidenziato l’ASGI in un documento che mette in fila i profili di manifesta illegittimità costituzionale del decreto-. I CAS sono il ‘non’ sistema di accoglienza per la generalità dei richiedenti asilo, in violazione della Direttiva Ue sull’accoglienza che consente simili riduzioni di standard soltanto per periodi temporanei e per eventi imprevedibili, mentre le strutture dello SPRAR sono sempre più riservate a minori (non sempre), a titolari di protezione internazionale e spesso a chi si trova in condizioni (spesso familiari) disperate”.

      Non solo. Come ha ricordato l’Associazione nazionale dei Comuni italiani (ANCI), il 43% degli accolti nello SPRAR “ha concluso positivamente il proprio percorso di accoglienza ed ha raggiunto uno stato di autonomia, e un ulteriore 31% ha acquisito gli strumenti indispensabili per ‘camminare sulle proprie gambe’”. “Lo SPRAR riesce a rendere autonome le persone in un lasso di tempo indubbiamente inferiore rispetto a ciò che accade nei CAS. Nello SPRAR il tempo medio di permanenza è infatti di 6 mesi, questo significa che in un posto SPRAR vengono mediamente accolte all’anno 2 persone. Nei Comuni dove esiste un progetto SPRAR, i costi economici e sociali subiscono una notevole flessione”. Motivo per cui a metà ottobre l’ANCI ha presentato alcuni emendamenti in vista dell’iter parlamentare che porterà alla conversione del decreto. Uno di questi chiede proprio di consentire l’accesso dei “richiedenti asilo vulnerabili (compresi nuclei familiari con figli minori) all’interno dei progetti SPRAR, per evitare che ricadano, inevitabilmente, sui bilanci dei Comuni e delle Regioni i costi dei servizi socio-sanitari che sarà in ogni caso necessario erogare senza poter accedere ad alcun rimborso da parte dello Stato (stimati circa 286 milioni di euro annui”.

      Posto di fronte alla contraddizione tra la relazione di agosto e il decreto di ottobre, il ministero dell’Interno ha fatto sapere ad Altreconomia che la Relazione non è altro che un “adempimento richiesto dalla normativa” e che questa “si riferisce, nel merito, al periodo cui la stessa fa riferimento”. Come se nell’arco di otto mesi lo SPRAR fosse cambiato.

      Ed ecco quindi che il “ponte necessario all’inclusione” è diventato la “pacchia” da interrompere: la graduatoria dei progetti avanzati dagli enti locali ed esaminati dal Viminale, per ulteriori 3.500 posti da aggiungersi ai 32mila attualmente finanziati, di cui era prevista la pubblicazione a luglio 2018, non ha mai visto la luce. E le nuove richieste di adesione al Sistema da parte dei territori -altri 2.500 nuovi posti- non sono state nemmeno prese in considerazione. Il risultato è che 6mila potenziali nuovi posti SPRAR sono stati “sacrificati” sull’altare della linea Salvini. Quella di ottobre, però, non quella di agosto.

      https://altreconomia.it/decreto-salvini-cas

    • Beyond closed ports: the new Italian Decree-Law on Immigration and Security

      In the past months, Italian migration policies have been in the spotlight with regard to the deterrence measures adopted to prevent sea arrivals of migrants. After the closure of ports to vessels transporting migrants and the reduction of search and rescue operations at sea, the government adopted a restrictive approach to the internal norms, reforming the architecture of the Italian system of protection.

      On 24 September 2018, the Italian Council of Ministers unanimously adopted a new Decree-Law on Immigration and Security. Strongly endorsed by the Minister of the Interior Matteo Salvini, the final text of the Decree contains ‘urgent measures’ on international protection and immigration, as well as on public security, prevention of terrorism and organised crime. Following the approval of the President of Republic, the bill has come into force on October 5. The future of the Decree now lays in the hands of the Parliament, which will have to transpose it into law within sixty days of its publication or it will retrospectively lose its effect.

      The securitarian approach adopted sparked strong criticism within civil society and the President of the Republic himself accompanied his signature with an accompanying letter addressed to the President of the Council, reminding that all ‘constitutional and international obligations’ assumed by Italy remain binding, even if there is no explicit reference to them in the Decree. This blog post provides an overview of the first two Chapters of the Decree-Law, dedicated to immigration and asylum. It will further analyze their impact on the rights of protection seekers and their compatibility with European law, International law as well as the Italian Constitution.

      1. Provisions on humanitarian residence permits and fight against irregular migration

      1.1 The abrogation of ‘humanitarian protection’

      The main change introduced by the first Chapter of the Decree-Law concerns what is commonly referred to as ‘humanitarian protection’, namely a residence permit issued to persons who are not eligible to refugee status or subsidiary protection but cannot be expelled from the country because of ‘serious reasons of humanitarian nature, or resulting from constitutional or international obligations of the State’ (art. 5(6) of the Consolidated Act on Immigration).

      The humanitarian residence permit was introduced as a safeguard clause in the Italian legislation, complementing international protection within the meaning of article 10 paragraph 3 of the Constitution, which stipulates that: ‘[a] foreigner who, in his home country, is denied the actual exercise of the democratic freedoms guaranteed by the Italian Constitution shall be entitled to the right of asylum under the conditions established by law.’ The important role of ‘humanitarian protection’ has been further clarified by the Italian highest court (Court of Cassation), which stated that the right to be issued a humanitarian permit, together with refugee status and subsidiary protection, constitutes a fundamental part of the right of asylum enshrined in the Constitution (see for example judgement 22111/2014).

      In practice, humanitarian residence permits were a ‘flexible instrument’ which could cover several circumstances emerging from forced displacement where there was no sufficient evidence of an individual risk of persecution or serious harm. As explained by the Court of Cassation, prior to the entry into force of the Decree, humanitarian protection was granted to persons suffering from an ‘effective deprivation of human rights’ upon the fulfilment of two interrelated conditions: the ‘objective situation in the country of origin of the applicant’ and ‘the applicant’s personal condition that determined the reason for departure’ (see judgement 4455/2018). The Court further presented as possible example of human rights deprivation the situation of a person coming from a country where the political or environmental situation exposes her to extreme destitution and does not allow her to attain a minimum standard of dignified existence. As noted by the Court, the definition of environmental issues does not only contain natural disasters but it may also include non-contingent events, such as droughts or famines, which deprive the person from having a basic livelihood.

      However, as already mentioned, the grounds for obtaining humanitarian protection were relatively open and could be adjusted to other situations entailing a deprivation of basic human rights, such as the inability of the country of origin to protect the right to health of applicants affected by serious conditions, or the family situation of the applicant interpreted in light of article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights. Also, the level of social integration reached by an applicant during her stay in Italy, together with the situation of poverty or instability in the country of origin, were also to be considered as a ground to grant humanitarian protection.

      By radically transforming article 5(6) and severely restricting the possibility for rejected asylum applicants to be granted residence permits in light of constitutional and international obligations or for humanitarian reasons, article 1 of the Decree-Law substantially abrogates ‘humanitarian protection’. Instead, the Decree provides for the creation of a ‘special protection’ residence permit, which can be issued only to those persons who cannot be expelled due to the non-refoulement obligations defined in article 19 of the Consolidated Act on Immigration unless the applicant can be returned to a country where she could receive ‘equivalent protection’.

      The first article of the Decree-Law further creates new residence permits that can be granted in restricted ‘special cases’, as for example: persons affected by ‘exceptionally serious’ medical conditions; persons who cannot return to their home countries due to ‘exceptional natural disasters’; and persons who have carried out ‘exceptional civil acts’. The Decree, however, does not modify the grounds for granting special residence permits to victims of trafficking, violence or labour exploitation, as already provided for in arts. 18 and 18-bis of the Consolidated Act on Immigration.

      The new Decree reduces not only the scope of protection and the number of potential beneficiaries but also the duration of the stay for third-country nationals falling into the above-mentioned ‘special’ categories. Whilst persons granted the ‘humanitarian’ status were provided with a two-year renewable residence permit, the permits issued in the new ‘special cases’ allow residence in Italy for shorter periods: six months for exceptional natural disasters or violence and one year in the other for ‘special protection’, ‘medical reasons’ and other ‘special cases’. Such permits are renewable and allow the holder to work but – differently from the humanitarian residence permit – they cannot be converted into a work permit when the circumstances for which they were issued cease to exist. Only in the event that the foreigner has accomplished exceptional civil acts, whose nature is not further specified, the person – at the discretion the Minister of the Interior – can be issued a residence permit lasting two years.

      A final important amendment contained in article 1 of the Decree is related to those persons who are already beneficiaries of humanitarian residence permits at the time in which the Decree enters into force: their permits will not be renewable anymore on humanitarian grounds, even if the circumstances for which the permit was granted in the first place still exist. Therefore, unless the beneficiary is granted a conversion of her humanitarian permit into a work or study permit, or she falls under the new special cases listed in the decree law, she will find herself in an irregular situation and will risk being returned.

      The abrogation of the ‘humanitarian’ residence permit is of particular concern as, since its creation in 1998, it has been an important legal instrument allowing to protect and regularise all third-country nationals who could not be returned to a third country. Suffice it to say that, in 2017 only, Italy has granted 20,166 residence permits on ‘humanitarian’ grounds, whereas only 6,827 persons were granted asylum and 6,880 subsidiary protection. To counter this trend, last July, the Minister of the Interior had already sent a letter to all administrative authorities involved in the asylum procedure, requesting them to adopt a stricter approach when granting protection on humanitarian grounds. Such decision has been justified with the rationale of conforming Italy to European standards, which do not provide for this third form of protection. Arguably, even if humanitarian protection is not harmonised at the EU level under the Qualification Directive, there are obligations imposed on all Member States by international refugee law and human rights law that prevent them from returning third-country nationals under certain circumstances. Looking at the practice of EU-28 Member States, in the course of 2017, 63 thousand asylum seekers were given authorisation to stay for humanitarian reasons under national law. This number could be even higher as it only encompasses first instance decisions for those persons who have been previously reported as asylum applicants, and does not take into account those who have been granted a permission to stay for humanitarian reasons without having lodged an asylum application.

      Moreover, the abrogation of humanitarian protection is likely to open a protection gap under article 10 paragraph 3 of the Italian Constitution. As noted by the Italian Association for Juridical Studies on Immigration (ASGI), the substitution of humanitarian protection with a restricted list of ‘special’ residence permits, means that the right to asylum set out by the Constitution is ‘no longer fully implemented by the legislator’. This could open the possibility to bring legal actions to ascertain the right of asylum guaranteed by article 10 – which can be invoked directly in front of an ordinary court even in the absence of implementing legislation – or raise questions of constitutionality.

      1.2 Making returns more effective

      The second part of the first Chapter of the Decree-Law focuses on improving returns and facilitating the return of third-country nationals in an irregular situation. In order to achieve these objectives, article 2 of the Decree extends the maximum duration of the foreigner’s detention in return centres from 90 to 180 days. Article 4 further foresees that, in case the reception capacity of pre-removal centres is exhausted and prior to authorization of a judicial authority, foreigners may also be held in other ‘appropriate facilities’ and in border offices. In addition, article 3 of the new Decree-Law modifies the Decree Implementing the Reception Conditions Directive and the Procedures Directive (Decree-Law 18 August 2015, n. 142), by expanding grounds for detention in hotspots. Thus, foreigners who have been found in an irregular situation on the national territory or rescued during search and rescue operations at sea may be subject to detention in order to determine their identity and nationality. The maximum duration of detention is set to 30 days. In case it is impossible to verify such information, the person concerned can be transferred in a return center for a maximum of 180 days. Finally, article 6 increments the funding for returns, providing for the re-allocation of 3,5 million euros between 2018 and 2020. These funds – originally provided for assisted voluntary return and reintegration – will now be allocated to facilitate not further described ‘return measures’.

      Even if the possibility to detain applicants for international protection in order to ascertain their identity and nationality is provided for in the Reception Conditions Directive, deprivation of liberty in such cases could be inconsistent with international refugee law read in conjunction with the Italian Constitution. According to ASGI, provisions connected to the deprivation of liberty in order to verify the identity and nationality are in violation of article 31 of the 1951 Geneva Convention and of article 13 of the Italian Constitution. In fact, since it is common to almost all asylum seekers not to possess valid documents proving their identity, such circumstances would not be proportionate to the ‘conditions of necessity and urgency’ required by article 13 of the Constitution to deprive someone of their liberty without judicial authorization. That been said, the debate on the lack of documentation to prove asylum seekers’ identity is likely to be of interest in the near future, as it is also fuelled by the European Commission recent proposal for a recast of the Return Directive, where the lack of documentation is included among the criteria establishing the existence of a risk of absconding to avoid return procedures.

      2. Provisions on international protection

      2.1 Provisions on asylum seekers who committed serious crimes

      The second chapter of the new Decree reforms, with a restrictive turn, the rules on the revocation of and exclusion from international protection. Article 7 extends the list of crimes that, in case of final conviction amount to the exclusion from or to the revocation of international protection. These include: production, trafficking and possession of drugs; injuries or threats made to officers in performance of their duties; serious personal injury offence; female genital mutilation; robbery, extortion, burglary and theft, if compounded by the possession of weapons or drugs; slavery; exploitation of child prostitution.

      Furthermore, article 10 of the new Decree introduces an accelerated procedure in the event that an asylum seeker is convicted – even prior to a final sentence – for one of the above-mentioned criminal offences and for the other serious crimes amounting to the exclusion from international protection already provided for in articles 12 and 16 Decree 251/2017. Thus, when the applicant is convicted in first instance, the Territorial Commissions for the Recognition of International Protection has to immediately examine the asylum claim and take a decision. In case the decision of the Commission rejects the request for international protection, the applicant is required to leave the country, even if the person concerned lodges an appeal against the asylum decision.

      The Decree Law, by abrogating the suspensive effect of the appeal for a person who has been convicted in first instance arguably goes against article 27 of the Italian Constitution, which considers the defendant not guilty ‘until a final sentence has been passed.’ Moreover, pursuant Article 45 Asylum Procedure Directive, as a general rule Member States shall allow applicants to remain in the territory pending the outcome of the remedy. An exception might be allowed under article 46(6)(a) of the Asylum Procedures Directive, if the application is determined to be unfounded on grounds that the applicant is ‘for serious reasons’ considered to be a danger to the national security or public order of the Member State. However, article 46(6) also stipulates that even in such case there is no automatism and the decision whether or not the applicant may remain on the territory of the Member State should be taken by a court or tribunal. Therefore, insofar as the Decree provides for the automatic return of rejected asylum seekers pending an appeal, without a judicial decision authorising their removal, it is incompatible with the right to an effective remedy provided for by the Procedures Directive and enshrined in article 47 of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights.

      In any instance, the return of a person – regardless of the fact that she may have committed a crime – cannot be performed when the individual concerned is at risk of refoulement as defined by article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights and Article 19 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights. As follows from the jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), the prohibition of non-refoulement has an absolute character. The conduct of the person is irrelevant and even the involvement in serious crimes, such as terrorism, does not affect the prohibition to return individuals to states in which they faced a risk of torture, inhuman or degrading treatment (see ECtHR judgements in Saadi, Chahal, and Soering).

      2.2 Provisions on subsequent applications and border procedures

      Article 9 of the Decree implements into Italian legislation some restrictive provisions on subsequent applications that are allowed under the Asylum Procedures Directive (APD) but that had so far been regulated in a more favourable manner.

      First of all, the Decree provides for new grounds of exclusion from the right to remain in the Italian territory, following almost verbatim the exception from the right to remain contained in article 41 of the APD. This includes all persons who have lodged a first subsequent application merely in order to delay or frustrate the enforcement of a decision which would result in their imminent removal, or make another subsequent application after their first subsequent application has been considered inadmissible or unfounded.

      Secondly, article 9 establishes new rules on accelerated procedures for applicants who have introduced a subsequent application for international protection without new elements or findings supporting their claim. In case that the applicant was stopped following an attempt to elude border controls, this procedure also applies in border or transit zones. This is a novelty in Italian law, that until now did not provide for the possibility of carrying out the evaluation of an asylum claim at the border. According to the explanatory note to the Decree, this amendment follows the rationale of article 31(8)(g) APD. This article, however, provides for the possibility to apply accelerated and border procedure in case an application is lodged to avoid an earlier removal decision – which appears to be a stricter ground than the one provided for by the Italian decree.

      Also, the Decree sets out a new ground for the inadmissibility of an asylum application: a subsequent application is inadmissible if it is lodged to prevent the enforcement of a decision which would result in her imminent removal and it shall be dismissed without being further examined. This is not consistent with article 40 APD, which provides at least for a preliminary examination on the presence of new elements substantiating the asylum claim.

      Lastly, following the definitions of article 41 APD APD, the Decree limits the suspensive effect of appeals lodged in two circumstances. First, by all persons who have lodged a first subsequent application to delay the enforcement of a decision which would result in his or her imminent removal. Second, by asylum seekers whose application has been considered inadmissible as a subsequent application where no new elements or findings have arisen or have been presented by the applicant, whilst prior to the entry into force of the Decree-Law this only happened when an application was assessed as inadmissible for the second time.

      2.3 Reception conditions for asylum seekers

      One of the most discussed provisions of the Decree on immigration concerns the reception of asylum seekers, which undergoes substantive changes. The decree de facto abrogates the possibility for asylum seekers to access reception provided under the System for the Protection of Asylum Seekers and Refugees (SPRAR). The system, operated by local institutions, in cooperation with non-governmental and voluntary organizations, had not only the aim to provide basic reception but also to favour the social integration of asylum seekers and beneficiaries of protection. With the amendments introduced by article 12 of the new decree, only already recognized refugees and beneficiaries of subsidiary protection, as well as unaccompanied minors, will be granted accommodation within the SPRAR. Asylum seekers will, therefore, be only hosted in collective reception centres (CARA, CDA). In case of unavailability of places, applicants can also be hosted in temporary reception centres (CAS) where, according to the law, only basic levels of reception conditions have to be met.

      These amendments fail to take into account the pre-existent structure of the Italian reception system. As a matter of law, the SPRAR was the only durable solution provided for asylum seekers, while the other types of reception centres have been designed only for initial or temporary reception (see articles 9 and 11 of the Decree implementing the Reception Conditions Directive). Considering the length of asylum procedures in the country, asylum seekers will be left with no alternative than remaining for months (or in some cases even years) in facilities which are often inadequate in terms of both capacity and structural and safety conditions.

      This decision is of great concern as it is likely to put further strain on the Italian reception system, which already has a record of not providing an adequate standard of reception conditions to asylum applicants – as recognised in 2014 by the European Court of Human Rights. More recently, a Dutch court annulled a transfer to Italy pointing out that the new Decree raises questions about the structural deficiencies in the Italian reception system, in particular as it restricts access to adequate reception conditions to vulnerable asylum seekers.

      Final remarks

      Whilst the number of arrivals to Italy is at the lowest level registered in the past few years, the phenomenon of migration has reached the dimension of an emergency in the internal public debate, with the Decree-Law on Immigration and Security representing a major downturn in the architecture of the Italian system of protection.

      The implementation of further grounds for exclusion and withdrawal of protection, the reduction of procedural guarantees, and the general restrictive approach on the rights of migrants and asylum seekers adopted in the Decree generate serious concerns. Above all, some of the provisions contained in the Decree may entail a risk of violation of the principle of non–refoulement, which is not only a cornerstone of the international refugee regime but also a fundamental guarantee that protects all human beings from being subject to torture, inhuman or degrading treatment. What is more, some of the changes introduced with the Decree might have far-reaching practical consequences on the rights of the migrants who are already present or will arrive in the country. In particular, the repeal of ‘humanitarian’ residence permits, which have been widely used in the past years, is likely to have the unintended side-effect of increasing the number of migrants who will find themselves in an irregular situation. The new bill has been presented by the Interior Minister Matteo Salvini as ‘a step forward to make Italy safer’ – however it will arguably increase the number of cases of destitution, vulnerability, and exploitation.

      It remains to be seen whether the Parliament will confirm the text of the Decree when ultimately converting it into law. However, considering that the time for discussion is limited (60 days only) it is doubtful that the bill will undergo substantial improvement. Also, as the Decree has become one of the flagship measures of the current Government, it is unlikely that it will be repealed in toto. The choice itself of the Government to use a decree having force of law – rather than of the ordinary legislative procedure – does not seem to stem from a situation of ‘obvious necessity and urgency’ as provided for by the Constitution. Rather, it appears to be a shortcut to obtain immediate results on matters where it is difficult to achieve political consensus through democratic debate. Against this backdrop, the new bill on Immigration and Security – with questionable democratic legitimacy – restricts the rights of asylum seekers and people displaced, making protection increasingly inaccessible.

      http://eumigrationlawblog.eu/beyond-closed-ports-the-new-italian-decree-law-on-immigration-and

    • Decreto immigrazione, le brutte novità nascoste sotto la fiducia

      Il governo ha presentato in aula un “emendamento interamente sostitutivo” del testo finora discusso. La “sorpresa” sono elementi di gran lunga più restrittivi in tema di diritto d’asilo. Tra questi, la nozione di “Paesi di origine sicuri”, un “cavallo di Troia” per smontare il sistema della protezione internazionale, come denunciano studiosi dell’Asgi

      Con 163 voti a favore e 59 contrari, il 7 novembre il Senato della Repubblica ha approvato la fiducia al cosiddetto “decreto sicurezza e immigrazione” promosso in particolare dal ministro dell’Interno Matteo Salvini. Il testo votato da Palazzo Madama e inviato alla Camera, però, è stato modificato rispetto all’originario attraverso un “emendamento interamente sostitutivo” del Ddl (il numero 1.900), sulla cui approvazione il Governo aveva appunto posto la questione di fiducia 24 ore prima. Non si è trattato di interventi meramente formali quanto invece profondamente sostanziali. Tanto da non lasciare praticamente più nulla del precedente sistema di asilo, incardinato al principio costituzionale che all’articolo 10 della Carta riconosce quella tutela allo “straniero al quale sia impedito nel suo Paese l’effettivo esercizio delle libertà democratiche garantite dalla Costituzione italiana”.

      Le 28 pagine di modifiche e integrazioni avanzate dall’esecutivo, secondo Gianfranco Schiavone, vicepresidente dell’Associazione per gli studi giuridici sull’immigrazione (Asgi, www.asgi.it), assumono infatti la forma di un “cavallo di Troia” -blindato dalla fiducia- utile a “introdurre novità di taglio iper restrittivo che nella prima versione del decreto non c’erano”. Creando così un provvedimento che è un “vero e proprio mostro”, senza peraltro dare troppo nell’occhio.
      Alla già nota abrogazione della protezione umanitaria, allo stravolgimento dell’ex Sistema di protezione per richiedenti asilo e rifugiati (SPRAR), alle illegittimità costituzionali già evidenziate nelle scorse settimane dall’Asgi, si aggiungono nuovi elementi preoccupanti.

      Schiavone ha il testo del maxi emendamento del governo sotto mano e scorre alle introdotte “Disposizioni in materia di Paesi di origine sicuri e manifesta infondatezza della domanda di protezione internazionale”.
      Il primo punto riguarda i “Paesi di origine sicuri”, il caso cioè di uno “Stato non appartenente all’Unione europea” che stando al nuovo articolato potrà “essere considerato Paese di origine sicuro se, sulla base del suo ordinamento giuridico, dell’applicazione della legge all’interno di un sistema democratico e della situazione politica generale, si può dimostrare che, in via generale e costante, non sussistono atti di persecuzione […] né tortura o altre forme di pena o trattamento inumano o degradante, né pericolo a causa di violenza indiscriminata in situazioni di conflitto armato interno o internazionale. La designazione di un Paese di origine sicuro può essere fatta con l’eccezione di parti del territorio o di categorie di persone”.

      Per “accertare” che uno Stato sia o meno “di origine sicuro” ed eventualmente iscriverlo nell’elenco adottato per decreto dal ministro degli Esteri (“Di concerto con i Ministri dell’Interno e della Giustizia) ci si dovrà basare “sulle informazioni fornite dalla Commissione nazionale per il diritto di asilo”. La domanda di protezione del richiedente proveniente da quel Paese verrà sì esaminata ma, se rigettata sarà “considerata manifestamente infondata”.

      “Dove è stata introdotta, la nozione di Paese di origine sicuro, che le direttive europee prevedono quale misura normativa solo facoltativa per gli Stati -riflette Schiavone- ha sempre prodotto gravissimi problemi poiché le domande di protezione sono per definizione individuali ovvero legate alla condizione specifica di un richiedente. Esaminare invece una domanda ritenendo già che un Paese di origine sia ‘sicuro’ crea una situazione di pregiudizio sostanziale nell’esame della domanda stessa e dà ampi margini per l’esercizio di un’influenza politica molto forte del potere esecutivo sull’organo di valutazione”. Ciò vale soprattutto per l’Italia oggi. Perché? “Perché chi stabilisce che il Paese di origine sia ‘sicuro’ sarà di fatto la Commissione nazionale per il diritto d’asilo, che non è organo amministrativo indipendente ed è fortemente connesso per composizione e struttura organizzativa al potere politico”. Tradotto: il Governo di turno potrà decidere che un Paese venga considerato di “origine sicuro” con obiettivi di carattere politico che nulla hanno a che fare con le domande di protezione. Schiavone pensa a casi come il Bangladesh, la Tunisia, il Senegal e così via.
      Il rigetto della domanda per manifesta infondatezza comporta un forte indebolimento della tutela giurisdizionale -continua Schiavone- poiché il ricorso ha tempi di impugnazione più brevi e non c’è un’automatica sospensiva durante il contenzioso. Molte ragioni mi inducono a pensare, anche se ancora a caldo e riservandomi approfondimenti -conclude lo studioso- che la nozione di ‘Paese di origine sicuro’ sia del tutto estranea alla nozione di asilo delineata dalla nostra Costituzione”.

      Tra le altre “novità” rispetto all’originario “decreto Salvini” c’è poi quella della cosiddetta “protezione interna” nel Paese terzo di provenienza del richiedente. “Se in una parte del territorio del Paese di origine, il richiedente non ha fondati motivi di temere di essere perseguitato o non corre rischi effettivi di subire danni gravi o ha accesso alla protezione contro persecuzioni o danni gravi e può legalmente e senza pericolo recarvisi ed essere ammesso e si può ragionevolmente supporre che vi si ristabilisca”, la sua domanda di protezione è “rigettata”. “Anche su questa norma, del tutto facoltativa nel diritto dell’Unione e che l’Italia, fin dal 2008, con saggezza, aveva evitato sono molti i dubbi di conformità rispetto all’articolo 10 della nostra Costituzione -riflette Schiavone-. È possibile segmentare un Paese in aree, evidenziando peraltro una situazione che è già di grande instabilità, visto che un Paese è diviso in due o più parti?. Cosa vuol dire in concreto che è ragionevole supporre che la persona si trasferisca nell’area del Paese considerata sicura? Quali i parametri di valutazione? È sufficiente solo la mancanza di rischio o è necessario che alla persona venga fornita una protezione effettiva e una assistenza materiale? La norma, genericissima, non fornisce alcuna risposta”. Ciò che è chiaro è che è scontata la tendenza, come ribadisce il vicepresidente Asgi, di considerare l’asilo come fosse una sorta di “extrema ratio” cui ricorrere quando nessuna altra soluzione, anche precaria e parziale all’interno di quel Paese sia possibile. “Che cosa ha a che fare tutto ciò con il diritto all’asilo garantito dalla Costituzione a coloro cui sia impedito nel suo Paese l’effettivo esercizio delle libertà democratiche? La distanza è abissale”.
      Utilizzare la nozione di area interna sicura nel Paese di origine è solo un altro modo per respingere domande di asilo che tradizionalmente vengono accolte. “Pensiamo al caso dei cittadini afghani o iracheni e riteniamo per l’appunto che le persone possano spostarsi in una presunta ‘area sicura’ del Paese. Quanto è sicura? Come si valuta? Per quanto tempo? Che tipo di stabilità e assistenza deve provvedere ad assicurare lo Stato allo sfollato interno? Domande che rimangono senza risposta”.

      Accanto al tema dei “Paesi di origine sicuri” e delle zone di “protezione interna”, il maxi emendamento interviene -come già il decreto 113- a proposito di cittadinanza. L’avvocato Livio Neri, socio di Asgi, elenca brevemente alcune delle misure del decreto legge governativo. “C’è l’aumento del contributo da versare per presentare ‘istanze o dichiarazioni di elezione, acquisto, riacquisto, rinuncia o concessione della cittadinanza’, che passa da 200 a 250 euro. C’è l’incredibile allungamento del ‘termine di definizione dei procedimenti’, da 24 a 48 mesi dalla data di presentazione della domanda. E c’è il brutto precedente della ‘revoca’ della cittadinanza prevista in caso di condanna definitiva per gravi reati”. Precedente che creerà peraltro nuova apolidia, dal momento che -come fa notare Neri- la norma così come è scritta (ed è rimasta) non prevede la circostanza che dopo la revoca sorga appunto una condizione di apolidia per l’interessato ed è perciò in contrasto con la Convenzione di New York sulla materia.

      L’emendamento del governo aggiunge a questi (e altri) elementi un termine di sei mesi per il rilascio di estratti e certificati di stato civile “occorrenti ai fini del riconoscimento della cittadinanza italiana”, che significa secondo Neri “che lo stesso documento (ad esempio il certificato di nascita di un congiunto, ndr) ha termini diversi a seconda di chi lo richiede”. E pone poi come condizione necessaria alla “concessione della cittadinanza” il “possesso, da parte dell’interessato, di un’adeguata conoscenza della lingua italiana, non inferiore al livello B1 del Quadro comune europeo di riferimento per le lingue (QCER)”, salvo per chi abbia sottoscritto l’accordo di integrazione o sia titolare di permesso di soggiorno Ue per “soggiornanti di lungo periodo”. “Questa previsione -commenta amaramente Neri- avrà un durissimo impatto sulle persone con minori strumenti culturali a disposizione e che per questo non saranno riusciti a imparare l’italiano”.

      https://altreconomia.it/decreto-immigrazione-novita

    • What will change for migrants under Italy’s new immigration and security decree?

      As the decree passed the Senate, Italy’s upper house, Matteo Salvini tweeted it was an “historic day.” The decree still needs to pass the lower house by the end of November before it is enshrined in law. At the moment, that looks likely, so what will change for migrants if it is passed?

      Like all decrees, Italy’s new security and immigration decree is composed of many complicated clauses and paragraphs. In short, it is intended to regulate immigration and public security. It has been pushed by Italy’s deputy prime minister and Minister of the Interior, Matteo Salvini, who is also leader of the anti-immigration party, La Lega (The Northern League).

      Essentially, it will change the laws under which foreign migrants have been staying in the country since 1998. It is set to repeal the right to stay for humanitarian reasons. “Humanitarian protection” is a lower level of asylum status that is based on Italian rather than international law. Up until now, this right has been conceded for up to two years on serious humanitarian grounds and allowed migrants and refugees to access the job market, health services and social welfare.

      The new decree will take this catch-all definition ’on humanitarian grounds’ away in favor of six new specific categories which applicants will need to fulfill. Has the applicant been smuggled or exploited? Are they subject to domestic violence? Do they need specific medical attention? Was there some kind of calamity in their country of origin or have they contributed in a special way to Italian civil society which would merit a right to stay?

      Article two of the law doubles the length of time that migrants can be kept in repatriation centers whilst their cases are looked at. It will allow the authorities to build more centers too. Repatriations are expected to increase with more money being assigned to making sure they happen; three and a half million euros in total up to 2020.

      Revoking refugee status

      There will be a longer list of crimes that, if committed will lead to a refugee being refused asylum or having their refugee status revoked. The crimes include murder, armed robbery, extortion, violence towards public officials, people found to be practicing genital mutilation, armed theft and burglary, possession of drugs, slavery, sexual violence or kidnapping. Anyone found guilty of terrorist acts or trying to overturn the constitution provides another reason for expulsion under the new law.

      The new decree is expected to weaken the SPRAR networks which were set up to protect refugees and asylum seekers in 2002. Only unaccompanied migrants and those who qualify for international protection will come under the future auspices of SPRAR. Everyone else will be sent to ’welcome centers’ or CARA (Welcome center for those requesting asylum). Social cooperatives assigned asylum seekers and migrants will be required to report to the authorities every three months with a list of people that they support. The decree is also expected to slash the budget assigned for food and lodging for migrants in CARA centers from 30 euros per person per day to 15 euros.

      Anyone who marries an Italian will now have to wait four years instead of the current two before applying for citizenship. In addition, like in Germany, migrants hoping to remain in Italy will be required to pass a B1 language test.

      Jubilation and condemnation

      Matteo Salvini was pictured looking jubilant as the decree was passed by the Senate with 163 votes to 59. Not everyone was happy though. Roberto Saviano, an anti-Mafia writer who opposes the current Italian government called the decree “criminal” saying it was “self harming, [and] suicidal.” He pointed out that it would be impossible to repatriate more than 500,000 migrants without papers who are currently present in the country. “Much better,” he said “give them papers and allow them to work and pay taxes to the state.” He said the law would only serve to increase the number of “irregular migrants” in the country feeding organized crime networks.

      The Democratic Party (PD) leader in the Senate, Andrea Marcucci contests the decree too. He was quoted in the left-leaning daily newspaper, La Repubblica, saying it “creates insecurity, not security and would make 100s of thousands more migrants clandestine in Italy.” He concluded: “This is a decree against Italy, against Italians and against security.”

      Salvini disagrees. In interviews prior to the Senate vote, he said that the decree was not just about immigration but increasing security for everyone in Italy. “It’s about strengthening the anti-mafia organizations and anti-racket laws. It will make everything more serious and rigorous. […] It is a decree which will bring more money and power to the police, to mayors; will introduce more surveillance cameras.” He added that once the law has passed, he will be looking to reform the justice system too. That way, cases dragging on for years, until they enter proscription, will be a thing of the past.

      The decree is scheduled to be put before the lower house on the November 22. With the Five Star Movement and the League holding a majority there too, (along with other right-leaning parties like Forza Italia and Fratelli D’Italia,) it is expected to pass without too many problems and enter law before the end of the year.


      http://www.infomigrants.net/en/post/13210/what-will-change-for-migrants-under-italy-s-new-immigration-and-securi

    • Message de Sara Prestianni, via la mailing-list Migreurop, 28.11.2018:

      Hier la Chambre des Deputé- avec un vote blindé de confiance - a approuvé le DL sécurité migration.
      Le #vote_de_confiance a permis au Gouvernement de le faire passer en toute vitesse et de balayer tout tentatif de l’opposition de faire des amendements qui pouvaient limiter les déjà tragiques dégâts.
      Nombreuses les déclaration préoccupé et les mobilisation des associations italiennes pour cette loi de la honte

      Ici le CP publié par ARCI -> Le secret loi immigration et sécurité est loi : Injustice est fait : https://www.arci.it/il-ddl-sicurezza-e-immigrazione-e-legge-ingiustizia-e-fatta

      où nous expliquons nos inquiétudes face aux dégâts sociaux d’une loi qui ne fera que créer encore plus de personnes sans documents qui seront exclu du système d’accueil en les rendant encore plus exploitables. Un énième, tragique, étape vers la violation systématique des droits de migrants et réfugiés.

      Ici les principaux changement dans le système italien (sorry only in FR) dont beaucoup intéressent les thématiques de travail du réseau :

      1- Abolition de la “#protection_humanitaire
      La protection humanitaire avait été introduit en 1998 et était attribué pour “serieux motivation de caractère humanitaire ou dérivant de obligation constitutionnels ou internationales de l’Etat Italien ; à ceux qui fuyaient des conflits, désastres naturels ou situations de particulières gravité dans les pays d’origine ou encore ceux qui ne pouvaient pas être expulsés ou encore à victime de traite ou autre type d’exploitation. En 2017 ont été présenté 130 000 demandes de protection en Italie : le 52% a été rejeté. Dans le 25% des cas a été attribué une protection humanitaire ; le 8% ont obtenu un statut de réfugié et un autre 8% la protection subsidiaire. Le 7% a obtenu un autre type de protection.
      Cela veut dire que ce permis ne sera plus donné mais aussi que ceux qui l’ont obtenu ne le pourront plus renouveler
      A sa place cette nouvelle loi a intégré un titre de séjour pour “#cas_spéciaux” : victimes de #violences_domestiques ou grave #exploitation du #travail ou pour des #raisons_médicales ou qui s’est distingué pour “actes de particulier valeur civile”. Ce permis aura une durée de deux ans et ne pourra pas être renouveler

      – Prolongation de la durée de détention dans les #CPR (centre pour le retour -> les cra italiens) -> Aujourd’hui les migrants peuvent être enfermé pour un max de 90 jours. La nouvelle loi prolonge la durée maximale de détention à 180 jours.

      – Permanence dans les #hotspot et points de frontière -> Selon l’article 3 de la nouvelle loi les demandeurs d’asile peuvent être enfermés pour une période de max 30 jours dans les hotspot et structure de “premier accueil” (#Cas et #Cara) pour l’identification. Si dans les 30 jours n’a pas été possible proceder à l’identification aussi les demandeurs d’asile pourront être enfermés dans un CPR pour 180 jours. De cette façon un demandeur d’asile pour être enfermé pour 210 jours pour vérifier et déterminer son identité. Cela sera aussi appliqué aux mineurs en famille.
      De plus est prévu que le juge de paix puisse valider la détention en “#locaux_adaptes” auprès les bureau de frontière jusqu’à’ l’expulsion pour max 48 heures.

      – Plus de fonds pour les expulsions -> A l’article 6 a été prévu un augmentation du budget pour les #expulsions : 500 000 euro en 2018 ; 1,5 million euro en 2019 et autre 1.5 millions en 2020.

      – Retrait ou refus de la protection international en cas de condamnation pour menaces ou violences à officiers public ; lésions personales graves ou vol

      – Ceux qui sont en procedure penale (meme si pas condamné en voi definitive verront leur demande d’asile analysé en procedure accelleré

      – Listes des pays sures -> La loi prévoit l’institution d’une liste de pays d’origine sure et la procedure de demande de protection internationale manifestement infondé. La liste sera stilé par le Ministere des Affaires Etrangers avec le Ministere de l’Interieur et de la Justice sur la base des info fournies par la Commissione Nationales du Droit d’Asile et les agences européennes et internationales. Les demandeurs d’asile en provenance d’un pays present dans la liste des pays sures devrait démontrer de avoir graves motivation qui justifient sa demande et elle sera analyse en procedure accellerée.

      – Restriction du système d’accueil -> Le système d’accueil pour demandeurs d’asile et réfugié (#SPRAR) - le système ordinaire géré par les mairies - sera limité à ceux qui sont déjà titulaire de protection internationales et aux mineurs isolés. Les autres demandeurs seront accueilli dans les CAS et CARA (en parallele le Gouvernement a annoncé une diminution des fonds pour demandeurs d’asile par jour de 35 à 19 euro rendent ainsi impossible donner aucun type de service - juridiques, sociale, intégration et psychologique - dans le parcours d’accueil)

      #pays_sûr #rétention #détention_administrative

    • L’Italie adopte la loi anti-migrants de Matteo Salvini

      Ce texte durcit la politique italienne en matière d’immigration, remplaçant les permis de séjour humanitaires par d’autres permis plus courts.

      L’Italie a adopté mercredi un décret-loi controversé durcissant sa politique d’immigration, voulu par Matteo Salvini, ministre de l’Intérieur et chef de la Ligue (extrême droite). La Chambre des députés a adopté le texte - après le Sénat début novembre et dans les mêmes termes - par 396 oui contre 99 non.

      Le gouvernement populiste formé par la Ligue et le Mouvement 5 Etoiles (M5S, antisystème) avait posé la question de confiance dans les deux chambres sur ce décret-loi. Quatorze députés du M5S n’ont pas pris part au vote mercredi.

      Le texte durcit la politique italienne en matière d’immigration. Il remplace en particulier les permis de séjour humanitaires, actuellement octroyés à 25% des demandeurs d’asile et d’une durée de deux ans, par divers autres permis, comme « protection spéciale », d’une durée d’un an, ou « catastrophe naturelle dans le pays d’origine », d’une durée de six mois, entre autres.
      Refus de signer le pacte de l’ONU sur les migrations

      Il prévoit une procédure d’urgence afin de pouvoir expulser tout demandeur se montrant « dangereux ». Il réorganise aussi le système d’accueil des demandeurs d’asile, qui étaient encore 146 000 fin octobre et seront regroupés dans de grands centres par mesures d’économies. Dans le volet sécurité, il généralise l’utilisation des pistolets électriques et facilite l’évacuation des bâtiments occupés.

      Le gouvernement italien a annoncé mercredi qu’il ne signerait pas le pacte de l’ONU sur les migrations (Global Compact for Migration) comme s’y était engagé en 2016 le précédent exécutif de centre-gauche dirigé à l’époque par Matteo Renzi.

      Le gouvernement ne participera pas au sommet prévu les 10 et 11 décembre à Marrakech où doit être définitivement adopté ce pacte « se réservant d’adhérer ou non au document seulement une fois que le parlement se sera prononcé », a déclaré le président du Conseil Giuseppe Conte. Non contraignant, ce texte de 25 pages, premier du genre sur ce sujet, vise à réguler les flux migratoires au plan mondial.

      https://www.letemps.ch/monde/litalie-adopte-loi-antimigrants-matteo-salvini

    • Il decreto immigrazione è legge: cambierà in peggio la vita di migliaia di persone.

      Con il voto di fiducia di ieri alla Camera, il decreto immigrazione è stato convertito in legge. Refugees Welcome Italia esprime nuovamente la propria contrarietà ad un provvedimento che cambia, in negativo, la vita di migliaia di persone, rendendole ancora più vulnerabili ed esponendole al rischio di vivere ai margini della società. Come già ribadito, lontano dal garantire “l’ordine e la sicurezza pubblica”, questo decreto va nella direzione opposta, acuendo il disagio sociale e aumentando l’insicurezza per tutta la popolazione, migrante e italiana, con pesanti ricadute anche sulla coesione sociale. Secondo alcune stime, la sola abolizione della protezione umanitaria – un permesso di soggiorno che lo Stato italiano riconosce a coloro che, pur non avendo i requisiti per ottenere la protezione internazionale, presentano comunque delle vulnerabilità tali da richiedere una forma di tutela – produrrà 60 mila nuovi irregolari nei prossimi due anni. Migliaia di nuovi senza tetto, persone senza diritti, che rischiano di diventare facile preda di sfruttamento e criminalità.
      “Un decreto di tale portata avrebbe meritato una discussione approfondita, in fase di approvazione, per tentare almeno di introdurre qualche miglioria, invece il testo è passato con la fiducia”, sottolinea Fabiana Musicco, presidente dell’associazione. “A pagare il prezzo di questo nuovo assetto normativo saranno, ad esempio, migliaia di ragazzi arrivati in Italia da minori soli che sono prossimi a compiere 18 anni. Molti di loro hanno fatto richiesta di asilo e qualora ricevessero un diniego di protezione internazionale, una volta diventati maggiorenni, non avrebbero alcun titolo per rimanere in modo regolare in Italia. Per non parlare dei tanti neo-maggiorenni che hanno già ottenuto la protezione umanitaria e che, non potendo accedere al sistema Sprar a causa del decreto, non hanno un posto dove andare. In questo ultimo mese ci sono arrivate diverse segnalazioni di ragazzi in questa situazione: diciottenni che si sono iscritti sul nostro sito per chiedere di essere ospitati in famiglia e proseguire il loro percorso di inclusione. Il rischio, per loro, è che finiscano per strada”.
      Oltre all’abolizione della protezione umanitaria, sono tante altre le misure discutibili che incideranno negativamente sull’architettura del sistema di accoglienza in Italia. Invece di potenziare l’accoglienza diffusa gestita dagli enti locali, che ha favorito, in questi anni, reali processi di inclusione per richiedenti asilo e titolari di protezione, si è scelto, con questo decreto, di rafforzare la logica emergenziale dei grandi centri che, oltre a non garantire alcuna integrazione, genera spesso, a causa dei pochi controlli, abusi e malversazioni. “Molte disposizioni del decreto, oltre a ridurre lo spazio di esercizio di alcuni diritti fondamentali, come quello all’asilo, sono contrarie al buon senso e renderanno il nostro Paese un posto meno sicuro per tutti, migranti e italiani”.

      https://refugees-welcome.it/decreto-immigrazione-legge-cambiera-peggio-la-vita-migliaia-persone

    • Azzariti: «Il Decreto sicurezza sarà bocciato dalla Consulta»

      Il costituzionalista critica il decreto Salvini votato al Senato, non celando la speranza che alla Camera venga modificato

      «Innanzitutto il provvedimento impressiona per il segno culturalmente regressivo perché appiattisce l’immigrazione ad un problema di esclusiva sicurezza pubblica: dalla legge Bossi Fini in poi c’è una progressione in questo senso di criminalizzazione del problema migratorio». Il costituzionalista Gaetano Azzariti critica il decreto Salvini votato al Senato, non celando la speranza che alla Camera venga modificato: «Così com’è è una summa di incostituzionalità, auspico si intervenga per cambiarlo in Parlamento».

      Professore, perché il decreto sicurezza sarebbe incostituzionale? Ci vuole spiegare le ragioni?
      Penso di peggio: nel testo ci sono una summa di incostituzionalità. Dallo strumento utilizzato, il decreto legge, al contenuto del provvedimento che va in conflitto coi principi della nostra Carta.

      Lei critica la formula del decreto perché dice che in questo momento non esiste un’emergenza tale da giustificare un provvedimento simile? Però posso ribattere, facendo l’avvocato del diavolo, che da anni è prassi che i nostri governi adottino la formula del decreto esautorando il Parlamento…
      C’è una sentenza della Corte Costituzionale del 2007 che ci spiega come non sia sufficiente che il governo dichiari la necessità di urgenza per emanare un decreto. Illegittimo è quindi l’uso del decreto legge per regolare fenomeni – quali le migrazioni – di natura strutturale che non rivestono alcun carattere di straordinarietà ed urgenza. In questo caso la palese mancanza dei requisiti costituzionali è dimostrata dal fatto di cui il governo si vanta di aver ridotto dell’80 per cento il problema dell’immigrazione. E allora non le sembra una contraddizione logica dichiarare l’emergenza quando lo stesso governo festeggia per i risultati ottenuti? Il governo ha pieno diritto di legiferare in materia, anche secondo il principio di contenimento dei flussi, ma tramite un disegno di legge.

      Al di là, quindi, della formula del decreto che lei reputa inopportuna, entrando nel merito, quali sono gli articoli della Costituzione che vengono violati?
      In primis, l’articolo 10 terzo comma stabilisce un diritto fondamentale che riguarda non i cittadini ma gli stranieri. A questi viene assegnato la possibilità di chiedere asilo politico allo Stato italiano. La stessa Cassazione, con diverse sentenze emesse dal 2012 al 2018, e le disposizioni internazionali ci parlano di permessi per “protezione umanitaria” come mezzi di attuazione della disposizione costituzionale. Bene, col decreto si passa all’eliminazione totale di questo status: la protezione umanitaria viene abrogata e sostituita da ipotesi specifiche. Cos’è questa se non una violazione dell’articolo 10 della nostra Carta?

      E che ne pensa della sospensione della concessione della domanda se si è sottoposti a procedimento penale?
      La presunzione di non colpevolezza è un principio di civiltà che è sancito dall’articolo 27 della nostra Costituzione. E non si fa certo differenza tra cittadini e stranieri (si riferisce in generale all’«imputato»). C’è poco altro da aggiungere: una sospensione della concessione della domanda mi sembra chiaramente violativa di questo principio.

      Si parla anche di revoca della cittadinanza in caso di condanna, anche questo aspetto secondo lei è incostituzionale?
      Si afferma per legge che qualora l’immigrato riuscisse, dopo il lungo iter burocratico, ad ottenere la cittadinanza italiana, non sarà comunque mai considerato alla pari degli altri. Come se dovesse pagare per l’eternità una pecca originaria. Questo aspetto è in contrasto con due principi: quello d’eguaglianza, introducendo nel nostro ordinamento una irragionevole discriminazione tra cittadini, e contravvenendo all’espressa indicazione di divieto della perdita della cittadinanza per motivi politici (articoli 3 e 22).

      In pratica, persone che commettono lo stesso reato avrebbero sanzioni diverse?
      Esatto, chi ha acquisito la cittadinanza è penalizzato rispetto a chi la tiene per ius sanguinis. Inoltre l’articolo 22 della Carta stabilisce che non si può perdere la cittadinanza per motivi politici. Ma se vuole continuo, gli elementi di incostituzionalità sono ancora altri.

      Ce li dica…
      Il decreto sicurezza estende la cosiddetta detenzione amministrativa cioè l’obbligo di stare in questi centri di permanenza e di rimpatrio da 90 a 180 giorni. Qui abbiamo una giurisprudenza con zone d’ombra ma che su un punto è chiarissima: la sentenza 105 del 2001 della Corte Costituzionale stabilisce che “il trattamento dello straniero presso i centri di permanenza temporanea è misura incidente sulla libertà personale”. Il governo dovrebbe dimostrare che in questi luoghi non ci sia limitazione di libertà personale, la vedo difficile.

      E sul taglio degli Sprar che ne pensa?
      È una delle parti più odiose del decreto. Si cancella quella normativa che definiva le politiche di integrazione cercando di realizzare anche un altro principio fondamentale: quello di solidarietà (articolo 2 della Costituzione).

      A questo punto, crede veramente che il testo verrà migliorato alla Camera oppure teme che Lega e M5S abbiano blindato il provvedimento con il voto di fiducia?
      La speranza è l’ultima a morire. Non posso auspicare che questa maggioranza cambi idea sull’ordine pubblico o sul nesso immigrazione-sicurezza o che faccia un provvedimento che regoli i flussi. Qui il tema di discussione non è l’indirizzo politico del governo ma il rispetto della Carta e dei limiti costituzionali. Ricordo, inoltre, che il presidente della Repubblica quando ha firmato il decreto, ha anche scritto una lettera a Conte rilevando nell’auspicio del rispetto dei principi internazionali. Il Parlamento ha l’onore di prendere in considerazione almeno questi moniti.

      E nel caso, invece, rimanga così com’è ci sarebbe l’altolà della Consulta? È un’ipotesi realistica?
      Sono certo che se dovesse essere approvato in questi termini, magari con l’aggravante della mancanza della discussione in Parlamento, tutta l’attenzione non politica ma costituzionale si riverserà sui due guardiani della Costituzione. In primo luogo sul Capo dello Stato in sede di promulgazione – che dovrà in qualche modo verificare se il Parlamento ha tenuto conto dei rilievi da lui stesso formulati – e in secondo luogo sulla Corte Costituzionale.

      La sento abbastanza convinto sulla possibilità che la Consulta bocci alcune parti del provvedimento…
      Gli elementi di incostituzionalità di questo decreto mi sembrano abbastanza evidenti.

      http://www.vita.it/it/article/2018/11/22/azzariti-il-decreto-sicurezza-sara-bocciato-dalla-consulta/149839

    • Italien verschärft seine Einwanderungsgesetze drastisch

      In Italien hat Innenminister Salvini sein Einwanderungsdekret durchgesetzt. Die Vergabe von humanitären Aufenthaltsgenehmigungen wird eingeschränkt, die Ausweisung von Migranten erleichtert.

      Drei Wochen nach dem italienischen Senat hat auch die Abgeordnetenkammer das umstrittene Einwanderungsdekret von Innenminister Matteo Salvini angenommen.

      Durch das Gesetz wird

      – die Vergabe von humanitären Aufenthaltsgenehmigungen massiv eingeschränkt und
      – die Ausweisung von Migranten erleichtert.
      – Auch die Verteilung und Unterbringung von Asylbewerbern wird neu geregelt: Die meisten sollen künftig in großen Auffangzentren untergebracht werden.
      – Als „gefährlich“ eingeschätzte Asylbewerber sollen in Eilverfahren abgeschoben werden können.
      – Migranten, die bereits die italienische Staatsbürgerschaft haben, sollen diese wieder verlieren, wenn sie in Terrorverfahren verurteilt werden.
      – Als sicherheitspolitische Neuerung ist in dem Gesetz unter anderem vorgesehen, den Einsatz von Elektroschockpistolen auszuweiten und die Räumung besetzter Gebäude zu erleichtern.

      Die Regierung hatte in beiden Parlamentskammern die Vertrauensfrage gestellt, um die Gesetzesänderung zügig durchzubringen. Einige Parlamentarier der populistischen Fünf-Sterne-Bewegung, die zusammen mit Salvinis fremdfeindlicher Lega-Partei regiert, hatten aus Protest gegen die geplanten Verschärfungen Dutzende Änderungsanträge eingereicht.

      396 Abgeordnete stimmten schließlich für die drastische Verschärfung des Einwanderungsrechts, 99 votierten dagegen. 14 Abgeordnete der Fünf-Sterne-Bewegung, die sich gegen die Pläne ausgesprochen hatten, nahmen nicht an der Abstimmung teil.

      „Ein denkwürdiger Tag“

      Salvini äußerte sich angesichts des Ergebnisses zufrieden. „Heute ist ein denkwürdiger Tag“, sagte der Innenminister, der zugleich Vizeregierungschef ist. Kritik an den Gesetzesverschärfungen wies er als Bedenken von Linken zurück, „die finden, dass illegale Einwanderung kein Problem ist“.

      Das Uno-Flüchtlingshilfswerks (UNHCR) hatte sich Anfang November besorgt zu den Gesetzesverschärfungen geäußert. Diese böten keine „angemessenen Garantien“, insbesondere für Menschen, die besonderer Fürsorge bedürften, etwa Opfer von Vergewaltigung oder Folter.

      Die italienische Regierung vertritt seit ihrem Amtsantritt im Sommer eine harte Haltung in der Flüchtlings- und Einwanderungspolitik. Schiffen mit geretteten Flüchtlingen an Bord verweigerte Salvini das Einlaufen in italienische Häfen. Der Schwerpunkt der Flüchtlingskrise im Mittelmeer hat sich seitdem stärker nach Spanien verlagert: Spanien ist in diesem Jahr zum Hauptankunftsland von Flüchtlingen in Europa geworden, weit vor Italien und Griechenland.

      http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/fluechtlinge-italien-verschaerft-seine-einwanderungsgesetze-drastisch-a-1241

    • Decreto immigrazione e sicurezza, la circolare ai Prefetti del 18 dicembre 2018

      Il Gabinetto del ministero dell’Interno ha diramato in queste settimane ai Prefetti la CM del 18 dicembre 2018 per «illustrare… le principali disposizioni d’insieme» del DL 4 ottobre 2018, il cosiddetto decreto immigrazione e sicurezza. Il testo è disponibile a questo link: http://viedifuga.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Circolare_m_18_12_2018.pdf. Il Viminale ha predisposto anche un documento divulgativo dal titolo Immigrazione e sicurezza pubblica. Le risposte per conoscere il nuovo decreto: qui (http://viedifuga.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/FAQ_Decreto_immigrazione_e_sicurezza_definitivo_3_1_2018.pdf) la versione aggiornata al 3 gennaio 2019.

      Qui invece (www.redattoresociale.it/Notiziario/Articolo/612656/Dl-Salvini-la-circolare-del-Viminale-che-tenta-di-rassicurare-i-sindaci), da Redattore sociale, il giudizio dell’ASGI sulla circolare ministeriale e le pericolose ricadute del DL (convertito in legge con la 132/2018: viedifuga.org/approvato-alla-camera-il-decreto-sicurezza-e-immigrazione-e-una-pessima-legge/) secondo Oxfam Italia e secondo l’ISPI (Istituto per gli studi di politica internazionale).

      http://viedifuga.org/decreto-immigrazione-e-sicurezza-la-circolare-ai-prefetti-del-18-dicembre

    • La stretta sulla residenza è uno dei problemi del decreto sicurezza

      Il decreto immigrazione e sicurezza, diventato legge il 27 novembre del 2018 con l’approvazione in parlamento, suscita divisioni e critiche sia all’interno della maggioranza sia tra le file dell’opposizione. Dopo l’attacco del sindaco di Palermo Leoluca Orlando e del sindaco di Napoli Luigi De Magistris – che hanno annunciato di non voler applicare la legge, perché “è un testo inumano che viola i diritti umani” – molti altri sindaci hanno detto che boicotteranno la norma. Una mappa compilata dalla ricercatrice Cristina Del Biaggio raccoglie tutte le adesioni degli amministratori locali contro il decreto, in totale un centinaio.

      Uno dei punti più contestati della legge è l’esclusione dei richiedenti asilo dall’iscrizione anagrafica. Leoluca Orlando, con una nota inviata al capoarea dei servizi al cittadino, ha chiesto d’indagare i profili giuridici anagrafici derivanti dall’applicazione del decreto sicurezza e di sospendere qualsiasi procedura “che possa intaccare i diritti fondamentali della persona con particolare, ma non esclusivo, riferimento alla procedura di iscrizione della residenza anagrafica”. Ma perché è così importante essere iscritti all’anagrafe e cosa comporta esserne esclusi? E infine, ha senso sospendere l’applicazione del decreto o basta applicare correttamente le norme esistenti?

      Cosa prevede il decreto
      La legge 113/2018 (anche detta decreto sicurezza e immigrazione o decreto Salvini) prevede delle modifiche all’articolo 4 del decreto legislativo 142/2015 attraverso un comma secondo cui “il permesso di soggiorno per richiesta d’asilo non costituisce titolo per l’iscrizione anagrafica”. Secondo Enrico Gargiulo, docente di fondamenti di politica sociale all’università Ca’ Foscari di Venezia, il decreto introduce una “rivoluzione nel campo del diritto all’anagrafe”, perché “per la prima volta si nega in maniera chiara a una categoria di persone un diritto soggettivo perfetto”, contravvenendo alla costituzione e ad altre norme generali sull’immigrazione come il Testo unico del 1998.

      Dello stesso orientamento l’Associazione studi giuridici sull’immigrazione (Asgi) che in un comunicato ha ribadito l’incostituzionalità di questo punto e ha annunciato di aver già presentato diversi ricorsi, impugnando in sede giudiziaria alcuni dinieghi all’iscrizione anagrafica. “Riteniamo infatti che non sussista alcuna ragione che giustifichi sotto il profilo costituzionale una diversità di trattamento nell’iscrizione anagrafica che colpisce una sola categoria di stranieri legalmente soggiornanti (i titolari di permesso di soggiorno per richiesta di asilo), violando il principio di parità di trattamento coi cittadini italiani prevista dall’articolo 6 del Testo unico sull’immigrazione( legge 286/1998)”, si legge nel comunicato. I ricorsi che saranno portati davanti a un giudice chiameranno in causa la corte costituzionale per violazione dell’articolo 3 della costituzione. La consulta a sua volta dovrà stabilire se questa parte del decreto è in linea con la carta fondamentale.

      Di fatto nella norma non si vieta espressamente l’iscrizione dei richiedenti asilo all’anagrafe

      Tuttavia alcuni giuristi invitano a un’interpretazione diversa del decreto. Le avvocate dell’Asgi Nazzarena Zorzella e Daniela Consolo ritengono che il decreto “non pone nessun esplicito divieto, ma si limita a escludere che la particolare tipologia di permesso di soggiorno possa essere documento utile per formalizzare la domanda di residenza”. Intervistata al telefono da Internazionale Zorzella ribadisce che “anche se il decreto ha come obiettivo l’esclusione dei richiedenti asilo dalla residenza, tuttavia di fatto nella norma non si vieta espressamente l’iscrizione dei richiedenti asilo all’anagrafe, ma si sostiene che il permesso di soggiorno per richiesta di asilo non costituisca un titolo valido per l’iscrizione all’anagrafe”.

      Per l’avvocata, quindi, i sindaci potrebbero con una circolare informare gli uffici anagrafici di accettare come documento valido per l’iscrizione all’anagrafe il modulo C3 e cioè la domanda di asilo presentata in questura dal richiedente asilo al momento dell’arrivo in Italia, assumendo quel titolo come prova del soggiorno regolare del cittadino straniero in Italia. “Il decreto sicurezza coesiste con il Testo unico sull’immigrazione, in particolare con l’articolo 6 comma 7 che non è stato modificato dal decreto e prevede che allo straniero regolarmente soggiornante sia consentita l’iscrizione anagrafica”. Secondo l’avvocata i sindaci potrebbero provare a interpretare la norma in senso meno restrittivo, continuando a consentire l’iscrizione dei richiedenti asilo all’anagrafe usando un altro documento come prova del loro soggiorno nel paese.

      Cosa implica l’iscrizione all’anagrafe
      L’iscrizione anagrafica è necessaria per il rilascio del certificato di residenza e del documento d’identità. Questi due documenti di prassi sono il presupposto per il godimento di alcuni servizi pubblici, in particolare dei servizi sociali, per esempio la presa in carico da parte degli assistenti sociali, l’accesso all’edilizia pubblica, la concessione di eventuali sussidi, per l’iscrizione al servizio sanitario nazionale (per la fruizione dei servizi ordinari come il medico di base, mentre l’assistenza sanitaria d’urgenza è per principio garantita anche agli irregolari), per l’iscrizione a un centro per l’impiego. Inoltre un documento d’identità valido è richiesto per sottoscrivere un contratto di lavoro, per prendere in affitto una casa o per aprire un conto corrente bancario. La situazione in realtà è molto disomogenea sul territorio italiano, da anni molti comuni hanno stabilito che sia necessaria la residenza per accedere a questi servizi, mentre in altri municipi è consentito accedere ai servizi con il domicilio o la residenza fittizia, ma il decreto introdurrà ancora più ambiguità in questa materia e c’è da aspettarsi un aumento dei contenziosi. “Chi non ha accesso ai diritti anagrafici diventa invisibile, è una specie di fantasma dal punto di vista amministrativo”, afferma il ricercatore Enrico Gargiulo. “Anche se una persona rimane titolare di certi diritti, senza l’iscrizione anagrafica di fatto ne è esclusa”, conclude il ricercatore.

      Anche su questo punto le avvocate dell’Asgi, Zorzella e Consolo, ritengono che l’iscrizione all’anagrafe non sia necessaria per garantire l’accesso ai servizi dei richiedenti asilo. Zorzella e Consolo ricordano che lo stesso decreto sicurezza prevede che sia assicurato agli stranieri “l’accesso ai servizi comunque erogati sul territorio ai sensi delle norme vigenti”. In questo senso, secondo loro, i sindaci e gli amministratori locali dovrebbero chiarire in una circolare che è sufficiente il domicilio per accedere ai servizi pubblici territoriali senza dover esibire l’iscrizione all’anagrafe, e lo stesso varrebbe per i servizi privati (banche, poste, assicurazioni, agenzie immobiliari).

      https://www.internazionale.it/bloc-notes/annalisa-camilli/2019/01/09/residenza-anagrafe-decreto-sicurezza

    • La delibera per iscrivere all’anagrafe i richiedenti asilo. Dalle parole ai fatti, smontiamo il decreto Salvini

      Il 2019 è iniziato con numerosi Sindaci che hanno manifestato la loro volontà di disobbedire al decreto legge “immigrazione e sicurezza” di Salvini.
      Tra tutti, Leoluca Orlando, sindaco di Palermo con una nota inviata al Capo Area dei Servizi al Cittadino, ha conferito mandato per indagare i profili giuridici anagrafici derivanti dall’applicazione della legge n.132/2018 e, nelle more, ha impartito di sospendere qualsiasi procedura “che possa intaccare i diritti fondamentali della persona con particolare, ma non esclusivo, riferimento alla procedura di iscrizione della residenza anagrafica”.

      Si tratta del primo vero atto che tenta di opporsi alle previsioni contenute nel d.l. n. 113/2018 dopo la sua conversione in legge. Precedentemente, infatti, alcuni Comuni avevano dichiarato di sospendere gli effetti del decreto ma solo fino alla sua approvazione definitiva.
      In ogni caso, il fronte che, speriamo, si stia aprendo a livello territoriale contro questo provvedimento è di fondamentale importanza.

      Le leggi razziste, securitarie e repressive come, prima, i decreti di Minniti ed , ora, il decreto di Salvini agiscono anche e soprattutto sullo spazio delle nostre città, creano sacche di esclusione e di diritti negati.

      Dalle nostre città, dunque, deve partire una nuova resistenza.

      Per questo abbiamo pensato di elaborare un primo modello di delibera che smonti un pezzetto della legge n.113/2018 proprio nella parte in cui prevedendo l’impossibilità per il richiedente, titolare di un permesso di soggiorno per richiesta asilo, di iscriversi all’anagrafe si pone in piena violazione dell’articolo 26 della Convenzione di Ginevra e comporta una grave limitazione al godimento di quei diritti che la nostra Carta Costituzionale individua come diritti fondamentali.
      L’iscrizione all’anagrafe, infatti, rimane lo strumento tramite il quale si consente ai poteri pubblici di pianificare i servizi da erogare alla popolazione; inoltre essa è da sempre presupposto per l’accesso ad altri diritti sociali e civili, come l’iscrizione al Servizio Sanitario Nazionale; l’accesso all’assistenza sociale e concessione di eventuali sussidi previsti dagli enti locali.

      Nel modello di delibera si richiama la competenza comunale in materia di istituzione di un albo anagrafico (art. 14 del d. lgs. 18 agosto 2000, n. 267), i casi in cui i Comuni hanno già esercitato tale potere istitutivo (si vedano i registri per le unioni civili); la Convezione di Ginevra; gli articoli della nostra Costituzione che tutelano l’iscrizione anagrafica e la consolidata giurisprudenza della Corte di Cassazione che ha riconosciuto un diritto alla residenza qualificato come “diritto soggettivo”.
      Il tutto per dire una sola cosa alle istituzioni locali: se volete, avete tutto il potere di istituire quest’albo e garantire ai richiedenti asilo l’iscrizione anagrafica. Avete dalla vostra, la forza della ragione e la forza del Diritto.

      Si tratta, dunque, di un modello di delibera che mettiamo nelle mani dei Comuni solidali che realmente vogliono contrastare gli effetti di questo decreto.
      Un modello di delibera che mettiamo nelle mani degli attivisti e degli abitanti delle nostre città, piccole o grandi che siano, per fare pressione sui loro governanti e sfidarli ad istituire l’albo per l’iscrizione dei richiedenti asilo.

      Un modello di delibera che è solo uno dei tanti strumenti che intendiamo mettere a disposizione di questa battaglia per la giustizia e la dignità.
      La partita per la gestione dei centri Sprar e per i regolamenti di polizia locale dei nostri Comuni è ,infatti, ancora aperta.
      Anche in quel caso gli amministratori potranno decidere da che parte stare: se dalla parte della cieca obbedienza a delle leggi disumane, che condannano migliaia di persone alla marginalità rendendole carne da cannone per le Mafie, oppure dalla parte della “sicurezza dei diritti” di tutti e tutte noi.

      https://www.meltingpot.org/La-delibera-per-iscrivere-all-anagrafe-i-richiedenti-asilo.html

    • Une nouvelle loi anti-immigration controversée adoptée en Italie

      Le parlement italien a adopté une loi introduisant des restrictions pour les demandeurs d’asile, mais aussi des mesures pour la sécurité publique et contre les mafias. Un article d’Euroefe.

      La Chambre des représentants a approuvé le projet de loi par 336 voix pour et 249 abstentions, concluant ainsi sa trajectoire après son approbation au Sénat le 7 novembre par 163 voix pour, 59 contre et 19 abstentions.

      Cette mesure a été amenée par le chef de file de la Ligue de l’extrême droite et ministre de l’Intérieur, Matteo Salvini, et présentée dans les deux chambres parlementaires comme une motion de confiance au gouvernement, une technique utilisée pour éviter les amendements et écourter leur approbation.

      Quelque 200 personnes ont manifesté devant le parlement pour manifester leur rejet de cette loi controversée, et ont organisé des funérailles pour les droits, dénonçant le racisme.

      Salvini célèbre sa loi controversée

      Matteo Salvini a exprimé lors d’une conférence de presse sa « grande satisfaction, non pas en tant que ministre, mais en tant que citoyen italien », car, a-t-il assuré, la loi « donnera plus de tranquillité, d’ordre, de règles et de sérénité aux villes ».

      La nouvelle loi repose sur trois piliers : l’immigration, la sécurité publique et la lutte contre la criminalité organisée.

      Dans le domaine de l’immigration, les permis de séjour pour des raisons humanitaires seront suspendus. Ceux-ci ont été accordés pour deux ans et ont permis aux réfugiés d’accéder au monde du travail et à la sécurité sociale. Au lieu de cela, des permis de « protection spéciale » d’un an seront octroyés.

      En outre, la protection internationale sera refusée ou rejetée en cas de condamnation définitive de l’immigré, notamment pour viol, vente de drogue, vol ou extorsion. La mutilation génitale est mentionnée dans le texte et considérée comme « crime particulièrement alarmant ».

      La nouvelle loi allongera de 90 à 180 jours la période pendant laquelle les immigrants pourront rester dans les centres d’identification, période que le gouvernement du Mouvement 5 étoiles et la Ligue considère appropriée pour identifier le demandeur.

      Par ailleurs, davantage de fonds sont prévus pour le rapatriement volontaire des immigrants et la protection sera retirée à ceux qui retournent dans leur pays d’origine, sinon pour des « raisons graves et avérées ».

      Utilisation expérimentale du Taser

      En matière de sécurité publique, la nouvelle loi stipule que les sociétés de location de voitures communiquent à la police les données de leurs clients pour vérifier leurs antécédents et éviter ainsi d’éventuels attentats à la voiture bélier comme ce fut le cas à Nice, Berlin ou Londres.

      Elle permettra aussi aux agents des villes de plus de 100 000 habitants d’expérimenter le pistolet électrique Taser, et les clubs de football devront accroître leur contribution, en allouant entre 5 et 10 % des ventes de billets à la sécurité des stades.

      La loi étend par ailleurs le « Daspo », l’interdiction d’accès aux manifestations sportives aux foires, marchés et hôpitaux pour les personnes qui ont manifesté un comportement agressif ou dangereux.

      Enfin, en ce qui concerne la mafia, les nouvelles mesures augmentent les ressources destinées à l’entité qui gère les biens saisis aux criminels et libéralise ces biens, qui peuvent désormais être achetés par des particuliers « avec des contrôles rigoureux » afin qu’ils ne reviennent pas entre les mains des clans.

      https://www.euractiv.fr/section/migrations/news/une-nouvelle-loi-anti-immigration-controversee-adoptee-en-italie

    • Decreto immigrazione e sicurezza: tutti i dubbi sulla costituzionalità

      Le Regioni contro il decreto Salvini. Piemonte, Umbria, Toscana, Emilia Romagna, Lazio, Marche, Basilicata. Di ora in ora si allarga la squadra dei governatori contro il decreto sicurezza e immigrazione di Matteo Salvini.

      La strada passa per il ricorso alla Corte costituzionale e a guidare il tutto sarà la Regione Piemonte, che ha dato mandato al docente di Diritto internazionale, Ugo Mattei, e all’avvocatura della Regione di preparare il ricorso che “

      seguirà l’esempio di quanto fatto da Apple, Facebook, Google, e altri colossi della Silicon Valley quando presero posizione e presentarono ricorso contro il decreto attuativo anti-immigrazione e il blocco dei visti voluto dal Presidente degli Stati Uniti, Donald Trump” ha spiegato l’assessora all’immigrazione della regione Piemonte Monica Cerutti

      “Ugo Mattei, insieme all’avvocatura della Regione Piemonte, si occuperà del ricorso in Corte Costituzionale contro il decreto sicurezza che rischia di creare un danno all’economia piemontese” ha spiegato Monica Cerutti. “Il decreto farà finire nell’irregolarità migliaia di migranti che quindi non potranno più contribuire alla vita economica del territorio”.

      “La nostra avvocatura sta anche lavorando con le avvocature delle altre ‘regioni rosse’” ha aggiunto l’assessora della Regione Piemonte “perché ci sia coordinamento nella presentazione dei ricorsi. Stiamo infatti pensando di aggiungere un nuovo profilo di incostituzionalità, che va sommarsi a quelli che riguardano le competenze regionali in materia di sanità e politiche sociali. Questo decreto manda del resto a gambe all’aria tutto il lavoro fatto sull’immigrazione in questi anni, rendendo inutili gli investimenti messi in campo dalla nostra Regione”.

      Il professor Mattei, si precisa dalla Regione, “si è reso disponibile a portare avanti questa battaglia a titolo gratuito. Quindi il suo intervento non costituirà una spesa per il Piemonte”.

      In precedenza anche il Quirinale aveva valutato eventuali profili di incostituzionalità del decreto, ponendo l’accento – nonostante la firma arrivata dopo la fiducia ottenuta alla Camera mercoledì 28 novembre 2018 – su alcune questioni.

      Vediamo quali sono:

      Necessità e urgenza – Il primo nodo è sulla natura dello strumento scelto dal governo. Secondo la Costituzione, il decreto deve rispettare i criteri di necessità e urgenza, oltre a non essere palesemente incostituzionale. La presidenza della Repubblica aveva già manifestato le proprie perplessità sull’urgenza di un intervento del governo su questa materia.

      Revoca del diritto d’asilo – Si allunga l’elenco di reati che comportano la sospensione della domanda di asilo e causano l’espulsione immediata dello straniero. Tra questi sono stati inclusi la violenza sessuale, la detenzione e il traffico di stupefacenti, il furto, la minaccia o la violenza a pubblico ufficiale. Nel decreto è prevista la revoca dello status dopo la sola condanna di primo grado: nella nostra Costituzione è però prevista la presunzione di innocenza fino al terzo grado di giudizio. Questa disposizione potrebbe essere in contrasto con i principi costituzionali.

      Revoca della cittadinanza – È prevista la revoca della cittadinanza italiana acquisita dagli stranieri condannati in via definitiva per reati di terrorismo. La revoca sarà possibile entro tre anni dalla condanna definitiva, per decreto del presidente della Repubblica su proposta del ministro dell’Interno. Anche questa norma è in contrasto con principi della Corte Costituzionale, che considera la cittadinanza un diritto inviolabile.

      Inizialmente i decreti dovevano essere due, uno sull’immigrazione e uno sulla sicurezza e i beni confiscati alle mafie. Poi sono stati accorpati in un unico provvedimento. Ecco gli altri punti del documento:

      Abolizione della protezione umanitaria – Il decreto prevede l’abolizione della concessione del permesso di soggiorno per motivi umanitari previsto dal Testo unico sull’immigrazione (legge 286/98).

      Trattenimento nei Cpr – Gli immigrati con i documenti non in regola potranno essere trattenuti nei Centri per il rimpatrio fino a 180 giorni. Ad oggi il limite era 90 giorni.

      Sicurezza urbana – Viene prevista la sperimentazione dei taser di parte della municipale nei comuni con più di 100 mila abitanti e inasprite le pene contro chi promuove o organizza occupazioni.

      Lotta alle mafie – Per contrastare le infiltrazioni mafiose nella pubblica amministrazione, il decreto prevede la nomina di un Commissario straordinario in caso di segnalazioni di situazioni anomale o di condotte illecite da parte di un Prefetto.

      https://www.tpi.it/2019/01/08/decreto-sicurezza-incostituzionalita-regioni/amp
      #constitutionnalité

    • Protezione umanitaria, la pronuncia della Cassazione n. 4890/2019

      Pubblichiamo la decisione n. 4890/2019 della Corte di cassazione, che risolve i dubbi in tema di regime intertemporale della nuova disciplina sulla protezione umanitaria.

      In argomento, questa Rubrica ha già ospitato la requisitoria del procuratore generale presso la Corte di cassazione, l’articolo di Carlo Padula (Quale sorte per il permesso di soggiorno umanitario dopo il dl 113/2018?) contenente l’orientamento dei Tribunali di Ancona, Bari, Bologna, Brescia, Catania, Firenze, Genova, Milano, Napoli, Palermo, Perugia, Torino, Trento e della dottrina in punto di regime intertemporale della nuova disciplina della protezione umanitaria.

      http://questionegiustizia.it/articolo/protezione-umanitaria-la-pronuncia-della-cassazione-n-48902019_19
      #protection_humanitaire

  • Bosnian police block 100 migrants from reaching Croatia

    Bosnian border police on Monday stopped about 100 migrants from reaching the border with European Union member Croatia amid a rise in the influx of people heading through the Balkans toward Western Europe.

    Police blocked the migrants near the Maljevac border crossing in northwestern Bosnia, which was briefly closed down. The group has moved toward Croatia from the nearby town of #Velika_Kladusa, where hundreds have been staying in makeshift camps while looking for ways to move on.

    Migrants have recently turned to Bosnia in order to avoid more heavily guarded routes through the Balkans. Authorities in the war-ravaged country have struggled with the influx of thousands of people from the Mideast, Africa and Asia.

    Peter Van der Auweraert, from the International Organization for Migration, tweeted the attempted group crossing on Monday was a “very worrying development that risks” creating a backlash.

    Van der Auweraert told The Associated Press that the migrant influx has already put pressure on Bosnia and any incidents could further strain the situation, making Bosnians view migrants as “troublemakers” rather than people in need of help, he said.

    Migrants arrive in Bosnia from Serbia or Montenegro after traveling from Greece to Albania, Bulgaria or Macedonia.

    Also Monday, a migrant was stabbed in a fight with another migrant in an asylum center in southern Bosnia, police said.

    The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies said Monday that more than 5,600 migrants have reached Bosnia and Herzegovina so far this year, compared with only 754 in all of 2017.

    Hundreds of thousands of people passed through the Balkans toward Europe at the peak of the mass migration in 2015. The flow eased for a while but has recently picked up a bit with the new route through Bosnia.

    http://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/article213373449.html
    #Bosnie #fermeture_des_frontières #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Croatie #frontières #route_des_Balkans #Bosnie-Herzégovine

    • Migrants en Croatie : « on ne nous avait encore jamais tiré dessus »

      Le 30 mai, la police croate ouvrait le feu sur une camionnette qui venait de forcer un barrage près de la frontière avec la Bosnie-Herzégovine. À l’intérieur, 29 migrants. Bilan : deux enfants et sept adultes blessés. Reportage sur le lieu du drame, nouvelle étape de la route de l’exil, où des réfugiés désœuvrés errent dans des villages désertés par l’exode.

      https://www.courrierdesbalkans.fr/Migrants-en-Croatie-nulle-part-ailleurs-on-ne-nous-avait-tire-des
      #police #violences_policières

    • Refugees stranded in Bosnia allege Croatian police brutality

      Croatian officers accused of physical and verbal abuse, along with harassment including theft, but deny all allegations.

      Brutally beaten, mobile phones destroyed, strip-searched and money stolen.

      These are some of the experiences refugees and migrants stranded in western Bosnia report as they describe encounters with Croatian police.

      The abuse, they say, takes place during attempts to pass through Croatia, an EU member, with most headed for Germany.

      Bosnia has emerged as a new route to Western Europe, since the EU tightened its borders. This year, more than 13,000 refugees and migrants have so far arrived in the country, compared with only 755 in 2017.

      In Velika Kladusa, Bosnia’s most western town beside the Croatian border, hundreds have been living in makeshift tents on a field next to a dog kennel for the past four months.

      When night falls, “the game” begins, a term used by refugees and migrants for the challenging journey to the EU through Croatia and Slovenia that involves treks through forests and crossing rivers.

      However, many are caught in Slovenia or Croatia and are forced to return to Bosnia by Croatian police, who heavily patrol its EU borders.

      Then, they have to start the mission all over again.

      Some told Al Jazeera that they have attempted to cross as many as 20 times.

      The use of violence is clearly not acceptable. It is possible to control borders in a strict matter without violence.

      Peter Van der Auweraert, Western Balkans coordinator for the International Organization for Migration

      All 17 refugees and migrants interviewed by Al Jazeera said that they have been beaten by Croatian police - some with police batons, others punched or kicked.

      According to their testimonies, Croatian police have stolen valuables and money, cut passports, and destroyed mobile phones, hindering their communication and navigation towards the EU.

      “Why are they treating us like this?” many asked as they narrated their ordeals.

      “They have no mercy,” said 26-year-old Mohammad from Raqqa, Syria, who said he was beaten all over his body with batons on the two occasions he crossed into the EU. Police also took his money and phone, he said.

      “They treat babies and women the same. An officer pressed his boot against a woman’s head [as she was lying on the ground],” Mohammad said. “Dogs are treated better than us … why are they beating us like this? We don’t want to stay in Croatia; we want to go to Europe.”

      Mohammad Abdullah, a 22-year-old Algerian, told Al Jazeera that officers laughed at a group of migrants as they took turns beating them.

      "One of them would tell the other, ’You don’t know how to hit’ and would switch his place and continue beating us. Then, another officer would say, ’No, you don’t know how to hit’ and would take his place.

      “While [one of them] was beating me, he kissed me and started laughing. They would keep taking turns beating us like this, laughing,” Abdullah said.

      Croatia’s Interior Ministry told Al Jazeera that it “strongly dismisses” allegations of police brutality.

      In an emailed statement, it said those attempting to cross borders know they are acting outside of the law, and claimed that “no complaint so far has proved to be founded.”

      At a meeting in late August with Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic, German Chancellor Angela Merkel praised Croatia for its control over its borders.

      “You are doing a great job on the borders, and I wish to commend you for that,” Merkel said.

      But according to a new report, the UNHCR received information about 1,500 refugees being denied access to asylum procedures, including over 100 children. More than 700 people reported violence and theft by Croatian police.

      Al Jazeera was unable to independently verify all of the claims against police, because many of the refugees and migrants said their phones - which held evidence - were confiscated or smashed. However, the 17 people interviewed separately reported similar patterns of abuse.

      Shams and Hassan, parents of three, have been trying to reach Germany to apply for asylum, but Croatian authorities have turned them back seven times over the past few months.

      Four years ago, they left their home in Deir Az Zor, Syria, after it was bombed.

      Shams, who worked as a lawyer in Syria, said Croatian policemen strip-searched her and her 13-year-old daughter Rahma on one occasion after they were arrested.

      The male officers handled the women’s bodies, while repeating: “Where’s the money?”

      They pulled off Shams’ headscarf, threw it on the ground and forced her to undress, and took Rahma into a separate room.

      “My daughter was very afraid,” Shams said. "They told her to take off all her clothes. She was shy, she told them, ’No.’

      "They beat her up and stripped her clothes by force, even her underwear.

      “She kept telling them ’No! No! There isn’t [any money]!’ She was embarrassed and was asking them to close the window and door so no one would see her. [The officer] then started yelling at her and pulled at her hair. They beat her up.”

      Rahma screamed for her mother but Shams said she couldn’t do anything.

      “They took 1,500 euros ($1,745) from me and they took my husband’s golden ring. They also broke five of our mobiles and took all the SIM cards … They detained us for two days in prison and didn’t give us any food in the beginning,” Shams said, adding they cut her Syrian passport into pieces.

      “They put my husband in solitary confinement. I didn’t see him for two days; I didn’t know where he was.”

      A senior policeman told Shams that she and her children could apply for asylum, but Hassan would have to return to Bosnia.

      When she refused, she said the police drove the family for three hours to a forest at night and told them to walk back to Bosnia.

      They did not have a torch or mobile phone.

      She said they walked through the forest for two days until they reached a small town in western Bosnia.

      “No nation has the right to treat people this way,” Shams said.

      In another instance, they said they were arrested in a forest with a group of refugees and migrants. All 15 of them were forced into a van for two hours, where it was difficult to breathe.

      “It was closed like a box, but [the officer] refused to turn on the air conditioning so we could breathe. My younger son Mohammad - he’s eight years old - he has asthma and allergies, he was suffocating. When we knocked on the window to ask if he could turn on the air conditioning, [the officer] beat my husband with the baton,” Shams said.

      No Name Kitchen, a volunteer organisation that provides assistance to refugees and migrants on the Balkan route, has been documenting serious injuries on Instagram.

      In one post, the group alleges that Croatian police twice crushed a refugee’s orthopaedic leg.

      Peter Van der Auweraert, the Western Balkans coordinator for the International Organization for Migration, says he has heard stories of police brutality, but called for an independent investigation to judge how alleged victims sustained injuries.

      “Given the fact that there are so many of these stories, I think it’s in everyone’s interest to have an independent inquiry to see what is going on, on the other side of the border,” Van der Auweraert said.

      “The use of violence is clearly not acceptable. It’s not acceptable under European human rights law, it’s not acceptable under international human rights law and it is to my mind also, not necessary. It is possible to control borders in a strict matter without violence.”

      Shams’ family journey from Syria was traumatic from the get-go, and they have spent and lost several thousand euros.

      While travelling in dinghies from Turkey to Greece, they saw dead bodies along the way.

      “We call upon Merkel to help us and open the borders for us. At least for those of us stuck at the borders,” she said. “Why is the EU paying Croatia to prevent our entry into the EU, yet once we reach Germany, after spending a fortune with lives lost on the way, we’ll be granted asylum?”

      “We have nothing,” said her husband Hassan. “Our houses have been destroyed. We didn’t have any problems until the war started. We had peace in our homes. Is there a single country that accepts refugees?”

      “There are countries but there’s no way to reach them,” Shams replied. “This is our misery.”


      https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/refugees-stranded-bosnia-report-campaign-police-brutality-180915100740024

    • Le Conseil de l’Europe somme la Croatie d’enquêter sur les violences policières

      Le Commissariat aux droits de l’Homme du Conseil de l’Europe a appelé la Croatie à ouvrir rapidement des enquêtes sur les allégations de violences policières et de vol à l’encontre de « demandeurs d’asile et autres migrants », ainsi que sur les cas d’expulsions collectives.

      Dans un courrier publié vendredi 5 octobre et adressé au Premier ministre croate Andrej Plenkovic, la commissaire aux droits de l’Homme du Conseil de l’Europe, Dunja Mijatovic, a déclaré être « préoccupée » par les informations « cohérentes et corroborées » fournies par plusieurs organisations attestant « d’un grand nombre d’expulsions collectives de la Croatie vers la Serbie et vers la Bosnie-Herzégovine de migrants en situation irrégulière, dont de potentiels demandeurs d’asile ».

      Elle s’inquiète particulièrement du « recours systématique à la violence des forces de l’ordre croates à l’encontre de ces personnes », y compris les « femmes enceintes et les enfants ». La responsable s’appuie sur les chiffres du Haut-Commissariat de l’ONU aux réfugiés (UNHCR), selon lesquels sur 2 500 migrants expulsés par la Croatie, 700 ont accusé la police de violences et de vols.

      « Consciente des défis auxquels la Croatie est confrontée dans le domaine des migrations », Dunja Mijatovic souligne cependant que les « efforts pour gérer les migrations » doivent respecter les principes du droit international. « Il s’agit notamment de l’interdiction absolue de la torture et des peines ou traitements inhumains prévue à l’article 3 de la Convention européenne des droits de l’homme et l’interdiction des expulsions collectives », qui s’appliquent « aux demandeurs d’asile comme aux migrants en situation irrégulière », écrit-elle.

      Une « violence systématique » selon les associations

      Pour la commissaire, Zagreb doit « entamer et mener rapidement à leur terme des enquêtes rapides, efficaces et indépendantes sur les cas connus d’expulsions collectives et sur les allégations de violence contre les migrants ». Elle somme également le gouvernement croate de « prendre toutes les mesures nécessaires pour mettre fin à ces pratiques et éviter qu’elles ne se reproduisent ».

      « Aucun cas de mauvais de traitement policier à l’encontre de migrants (...) ni aucun vol n’ont été établis », s’est défendu le ministre croate de l’Intérieur Davor Bozinovic dans une lettre de réponse au Conseil de l’Europe.

      Pourtant, dans un rapport intitulé « Games of violence », l’organisation Médecins sans frontières MSF alertait déjà en octobre 2017 sur les violences perpétrées par les polices croates, hongroises et bulgares envers les enfants et les jeunes migrants.

      Sur sa page Facebook, l’association No Name Kitchen a également rappelé qu’elle documentait les cas de violences aux frontières croates depuis 2017 sur le site Border violence.
      En août dernier, cette association qui aide les réfugiés à Sid en Serbie et dans le nord-ouest de la Bosnie expliquait à InfoMigrants que la violence était « systématique » pour les migrants expulsés de Croatie. « Il y a un ou deux nouveaux cas chaque jour. Nous n’avons pas la capacité de tous les documenter », déclarait Marc Pratllus de No Name Kitchen.


      http://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/12518/le-conseil-de-l-europe-somme-la-croatie-d-enqueter-sur-les-violences-p

    • Bosnie-Herzégovine : des réfugiés tentent de passer en force en Croatie

      Alors que les températures ont brutalement chuté ces derniers jours, des réfugiés bloqués en Bosnie-Herzégovine ont tenté de franchir la frontière croate. Des rixes ont éclaté, des policiers croates ont été blessés, des réfugiés aussi.

      Environ 150 à 200 réfugiés ont essayé, mercredi après-midi, de traverser en force le pont reliant la Bosnie-Herzégovine au poste-frontière croate de Mlajevac. Des échauffourées ont éclaté entre la police et les réfugiés, parmi lesquels des femmes et des enfants. Au moins deux policiers croates ont été blessés par des jets de pierres, selon le ministère croate de l’Intérieur. Les réfugiés ont depuis organisé un sit-in devant la frontière, dont ils demandent l’ouverture.

      « Les réfugiés se sont déplacés jusqu’à la frontière croate où la police leur a refusé l’entrée, illégale et violente, sur le territoire », a rapporté le ministère croate de l’Intérieur. « Les réfugiés ont ensuite jeté des pierres sur les agents de la police croate, dont deux ont été légèrement blessé et ont demandé une aide médicale. »

      Après avoir passé la nuit près de la frontière de Velika Kalduša – Maljevac, les réfugiés s’attendaient à pouvoir entrer en Croatie depuis la Bosnie-Herzégovine et ont franchi un premier cordon de la police bosnienne aux frontières. « La police croate n’a pas réagi après que les réfugiés eurent passé le premier cordon de police en direction de la Croatie, car il y avait un second cordon de la police bosnienne », a déclaré la cheffe du département des relations publiques du ministère croate de l’Intérieur, Marina Mandić, soulignant que la police croate, en poste à la frontière, n’est intervenue à aucun moment et n’a donc pas pénétré sur le territoire de la Bosnie-Herzégovine, comme l’ont rapporté certains médias.

      Selon l’ONG No Name Kitchen, la police bosnienne aurait fait usage de gaz lacrymogènes. Au moins trois réfugiés ont été blessés et pris en charge par Médecins sans frontières.

      Mardi, plus de 400 réfugiés sont arrivés à proximité de la frontière où la police a déployé une bande jaune de protection pour les empêcher de passer en Croatie. Parmi les réfugiés qui dorment dehors ou dans des tentes improvisées, on compte beaucoup de femmes et d’enfants. Ils ont ramassé du bois et allumé des feux, alors que la température atteint à peine 10°C.

      Le commandant de la police du canton d’Una-Sana, en Bosnie-Herzégovine, Mujo Koričić, a confirmé mercredi que des mesures d’urgence étaient entrées en vigueur afin d’empêcher l’escalade de la crise migratoire dans la région, notamment l’afflux de nouveaux réfugiés.

      Mise à jour, jeudi 25 octobre, 17h – Environ 120 réfugiés stationnent toujours près du poste-frontière de Velika Kalduša–Maljevac après avoir passé une deuxième nuit sur place, dehors ou dans des tentes improvisées. La police aux frontières de Bosnie-Herzégovine assure que la situation est sous contrôle et pacifiée. La circulation est toujours suspendue. Des enfants portent des banderoles avec des inscriptions demandant l’ouverture de la frontière.

      En réaction, le secrétaire général aux Affaires étrangères de l’UE, l’autrichien Johannes Peterlik, a déclaré jeudi 25 octobre en conférence de presse : « Les migrations illégales ne sont pas la voie à suivre. Il y a des voies légales et cela doit être clair ».

      Le nombre de migrants dans le canton d’Una-Sana est actuellement estimé à 10500.


      https://www.courrierdesbalkans.fr/Bosnie-Herzegovine-des-refugies-tentent-un-passage-en-force-en-Cr
      #violence

      v. aussi :

      Sulla porta d’Europa. Scontri e feriti oggi alla frontiera fra Bosnia e Croazia. Dove un gruppo di 200 migranti ha cercato di passare il confine. Foto Reuters/Marko Djurica

      https://twitter.com/NiccoloZancan/status/1055070667710828545

    • Bleak Bosnian winter for migrants camped out on new route to Europe

      Shouting “Open borders!”, several dozen migrants and asylum seekers broke through a police cordon last week at the Maljevac border checkpoint in northwestern Bosnia and Herzegovina and tried to cross into Croatia.

      After being forced back by Croatian police with teargas, they set up camp just inside Bosnian territory. They are in the vanguard of a new wave of migrants determined to reach wealthier European countries, often Germany. Stalled, they have become a political football and face winter with little assistance and inadequate shelter.

      The old Balkan route shut down in 2016 as a raft of European countries closed their borders, with Hungary erecting a razor-wire fence. But a new route emerged this year through Bosnia (via Albania and Montenegro or via Macedonia and Serbia) and on to Croatia, a member of the EU. The flow of travellers has been fed by fresh streams of people from the Middle East and Central and South Asia entering Greece from Turkey, notably across the Evros River.

      By the end of September, more than 16,000 asylum seekers and migrants had entered Bosnia this year, compared to just 359 over the same period last year, according to official figures. The real number is probably far higher as more are smuggled in and uncounted. Over a third of this year’s official arrivals are Pakistani, followed by Iranians (16 percent), Syrians (14 percent), and Iraqis (nine percent).

      This spike is challenging Bosnia’s ability to provide food, shelter, and other aid – especially to the nearly 10,000 people that local institutions and aid organisations warn may be stranded at the Croatian border as winter begins. Two decades after the Balkan wars of the 1990s, the situation is also heightening tensions among the country’s Muslim, Serb, and Croat communities and its often fraught tripartite political leadership.

      How to respond to the unexpected number of migrants was a key issue in the presidential election earlier this month. Nationalist Bosnian Serb leader Milorad Dodik, who won the Serb seat in the presidency, charged that it was a conspiracy to boost the country’s Muslim population. The outgoing Croat member of the presidency, Dragan Čović, repeatedly called for Bosnia’s borders to be closed to stem the migrant flow.

      Maja Gasal Vrazalica, a left-wing member of parliament and a refugee herself during the Bosnian wars, accuses nationalist parties of “misusing the topic of refugees because they want to stoke up all this fear through our nation.”
      “I’m very scared”

      Most migrants and asylum seekers are concentrated around two northwestern towns, Bihać and nearby Velika Kladuša. Faris Šabić, youth president of the Bihać Red Cross, organises assistance for the some 4,000 migrants camped in Bihać and others who use the town as a way station.

      Since the spring and throughout the summer, as arrivals spiked, several local volunteers joined his staff to provide food, hygiene items, and first aid. But now, as winter draws in, they fear the scale of the crisis is becoming untenable.

      “I have to be honest, I’m very scared,” Šabić told IRIN, examining a notebook filled with the names of new arrivals. “Not only for migrants, I’m scared for my locals as well. We are a generous and welcoming people, but I fear that we will not be able to manage the emergency anymore.”

      The Bihać Red Cross, along with other aid organisations and human rights groups, is pushing the government to find long-term solutions. But with an economy still recovering from the legacy of the war and a youth unemployment rate of almost 55 percent, it has been hard-pressed to find answers.

      Hope that the end of the election season might improve the national debate around migration appears misguided. Around 1,000 Bihać locals staged protests for three consecutive days, from 20-22 October, demanding the relocation of migrants outside the town centre. On the Saturday, Bihać residents even travelled to the capital, Sarajevo, blocking the main street to protest the inaction of the central government.

      The local government of the border district where most migrants and asylum seekers wait, Una-Sana, complains of being abandoned by the central government in Sarajevo. “We do not have bad feelings towards migrants, but the situation is unmanageable,” the mayor of Bihać, Šuhret Fazlić, told IRIN.

      To begin with most residents openly welcomed the migrants, with volunteers providing food and medical help. But tensions have been growing, especially as dozens of the latest newcomers have started occupying the main public spaces in the town.

      “They turned our stadium into a toilet and occupied children’s playgrounds,” said Fazlić. “I would like to understand why they come here, but what is important at the moment is to understand where to host them in a dignified manner.”
      Beatings and abuse

      Those camped near the Croatian border have all entered Bosnia illegally. Each night, they wait to enter “The Game” – as they refer to attempts to cross the frontier and strike out into dense forests.

      Most are detained and pushed back into Bosnia by the Croatian police. Some reach Slovenia before being deported all the way back. Abuse is rife, according to NGOs and human rights groups. Those who have attempted to cross say Croatian police officers destroy their phones to prevent them from navigating the mountains, beat them with electric batons, unleash dogs, steal their money, and destroy their documents and personal belongings. Croatia’s interior ministry has strongly denied allegations of police brutality.

      No Name Kitchen, a group of activists that provides showers, soap, and hygiene products to migrants in Velika Kladuša, has been documenting cases of violence allegedly committed by the Croatian police. In August alone the organisation collected accounts from 254 deportees. Most claimed to have suffered physical violence. Of those cases, 43 were minors.

      Croatian media has reported cases of shootings, too. In late May, a smuggler’s van bringing migrants and asylum seekers from Bosnia was shot at and three people including a boy and a girl, both 12, were wounded.

      A report earlier this year from the UN’s refugee agency, UNHCR, collated accounts from 2,500 refugees and migrants allegedly pushed back from Croatia to Serbia and Bosnia. In more than 1,500 cases – 100 of them relating to children – asylum procedures were denied, and over 700 people made allegations of violence or theft.
      Winter housing needed

      In Velika Kladuša, two kilometres from the Maljevac border checkpoint, around 1,000 people live in a makeshift tent camp that turns into a swamp every time it rains. Temperatures here will soon plummet below zero at night. Finding a new place for them "is a race against time and the key challenge,” said Stephanie Woldenberg, senior UNHCR protection officer.

      Already, life is difficult.

      “Nights here are unsustainable,” Emin, a young Afghan girl who tried twice to cross the border with her family and is among those camped in Velika Kladuša, told IRIN. “Dogs in the kennel are treated better than us.”

      Bosnian police reportedly announced last week that migrants are no longer allowed to travel to the northwest zone, and on 30 October said they had bussed dozens of migrants from the border camps to a new government-run facility near Velika Kladuša. Another facility has been set up near Sarajevo since the election. Together, they have doubled the number of beds available to migrants to 1,700, but it’s still nowhere near the capacity needed.

      The federal government has identified a defunct factory, Agrokomerc, once owned by the mayor of Velika Kladuša, Fikret Abdić, as a potential site to house more migrants. Abdić was convicted on charges of war crimes during the Balkan wars and sentenced to 20 years imprisonment. He became mayor in 2016, after his 2012 release. His local government is strongly opposed to the move and counters that the migrants and asylum seekers should be equally distributed throughout Bosnia.

      For now, around 800 people live inside a former student dormitory in Velika Kladuša that is falling apart due to damage sustained during the Bosnian wars. Holes in the floor and the absence of basic fixtures and of a proper heating system make it highly unsuitable to house migrants this winter. Clean water and bathing facilities are scarce, and the Red Cross has registered several cases of scabies, lice, and other skin and vector-borne diseases.

      Throughout the three-storey building, migrants and asylum seekers lie sprawled across the floor on mattresses, waiting their turn to charge their phones at one of the few electrical sockets. Many are young people from Lahore, Pakistan who sold their family’s homes and businesses to pay for this trip. On average they say they paid $10,000 to smugglers who promised to transport them to the EU. Several display bruises and abrasions, which they say were given to them by Croatian border patrol officers as they tried to enter Croatia.

      The bedding on one mattress is stained with blood. Witnesses told IRIN the person who sleeps there was stabbed by other migrants trying to steal his few belongings. “It happens frequently here,” one said.


      https://www.irinnews.org/news-feature/2018/10/31/bleak-bosnian-winter-migrants-camped-out-new-route-europe

    • ’They didn’t give a damn’: first footage of Croatian police ’brutality’

      Migrants who allegedly suffer savage beatings by state officials call it ‘the game’. But as shocking evidence suggests, attempting to cross the Bosnia-Croatia border is far from mere sport.

      As screams ring out through the cold night air, Sami, hidden behind bushes, begins to film what he can.

      “The Croatian police are torturing them. They are breaking people’s bones,’’ Sami whispers into his mobile phone, as the dull thumps of truncheons are heard.

      Then silence. Minutes go by before Hamdi, Mohammed and Abdoul emerge from the woods, faces bruised from the alleged beating, mouths and noses bloody, their ribs broken.

      Asylum seekers from Algeria, Syria and Pakistan, they had been captured by the Croatian police attempting to cross the Bosnia-Croatia border into the EU, and brutally beaten before being sent back.

      Sami, 17, from Kobane, gave the Guardian his footage, which appears to provide compelling evidence of the physical abuses, supposedly perpetrated by Croatian police, of which migrants in the Bosnian cities of Bihac and Velika Kladusa have been complaining.

      The EU border agency, Frontex, announced on Wednesday that this year is likely to produce the lowest number of unauthorised migrants arriving into Europe in five years.

      Frontex said that approximately 118,900 irregular border crossings were recorded in the first 10 months of 2018, roughly 31% lower than the same period in 2017.
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      Despite this steady decline in numbers, many states remain embroiled in political disputes that fuel anti-migrant sentiment across Europe.

      Frontex also noted that, while entries are declining, the number of people reaching Europe across the western Mediterranean, mostly through Spain from Morocco, continues to rise. Nearly 9,400 people crossed in October, more than double the number for the same month last year.

      But the brutality of what is happening on Europe’s borders is not documented. Every night, migrants try to cross into Croatia. And, according to dozens of accounts received by the Guardian and charities, many end up in the hands of police, who beat them back to Bosnia.

      No Name Kitchen (NNK), an organisation consisting of volunteers from several countries that distributes food to asylum seekers in Serbia, Bosnia and Italy, registers 50-100 people a week who have been pushed back by the Croatian authorities. Roughly 70% of them claim to have been beaten.

      “In the last months our team in Bosnia and Herzegovina has regularly treated patients – sometimes even women and small children – with wounds allegedly inflicted by state authorities when attempting to cross into Croatia and Slovenia, where, according to their testimonies, their claims for asylum and protection are regularly ignored,” says Julian Koeberer, humanitarian affairs officer in the northern Balkans for Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF).
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      Since the turn of the year, the Bosnian authorities have registered the entry of about 21,000 people, coming from Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran or Syria. Of these, an estimated 5,000 remain in the country.

      Of 50 people to whom the Guardian spoke, mostly from Pakistan, 35 said they had been attacked by Croatian police. The majority of them arrived in Bosnia through Turkey, hoping to reach Slovenia, a Schengen country, before heading to Italy, Austria or Germany.

      ‘‘The Iranian police broke all my teeth, the Croatian ones broke my nose and ribs,” says Milad, 29, an Iranian asylum seeker who since September has lived in Bihac. “Yet everyone talks about the violence in Iran and nobody talks about the violence perpetrated by a European country.”

      Adeel, 27, from Pakistan, claims he had his ankle broken with a truncheon. ‘‘Where are the human rights?” he asks.

      Anees, 43, also from Pakistan, says he begged the police not to beat him after he was stopped in the woods on the border with Velika Kladusa. ‘‘I have a heart disease, I told them to stop because they could have killed me,’’ explains Anees, whose medical conditions are detailed in a clinical file.

      On 9 June 2018, he had heart surgery at the Zdravstveni centre hospital in the Serbian city of Uzice. After the operation, he continued his journey. He struggles to breathe as he tells his story: ‘‘I told him I was sick, I showed them the clinical file. They did not give a damn. They started beating me and sent us back to Bosnia. But it does not matter. Tomorrow I will try the game again.’’

      That’s what migrants call it: ‘the game”. But there is nothing fun about it. They set off in groups: 70 or 80 people, or sometimes as few as five to 10. Police, armed with truncheons, pistols and night vision goggles, patrol Europe’s longest border between Bosnia and Croatia. According to accounts provided by more than 10 migrants, some officers wear paramilitary uniforms with a badge depicting a sword upraised by two lightning bolts. This is the badge of Croatian special police.

      “They stop us and, before beating us, they frisk us”, says Hamdi, 35, An Algerian language teacher. “If they find money, they steal it. If they find mobile phones, they destroy them to avoid being filmed or simply to stop us from contacting our friends. And then they beat us, four or five against one. They throw us to the ground, kick us, and beat us with their truncheons. Sometimes their dogs attack us. To them, we probably don’t seem much different from their dogs.”

      Hamdi is one of three men traveling with Sami. The screams in the video are his. His face is covered in blood when he reaches his friends. His nose is broken, his lips swollen.

      “After repeatedly being pushed back or forced to return to Bosnia on their own, asylum seekers find themselves in unsanitary, improvised settlements such as open fields and squats while formal government camps are full,” says Koeberer.

      “Those sites still offer alarmingly inadequate conditions due to only slow improvement in provision of winter shelter (food, hygiene, legal status and medical care), and these inhumane living conditions have severe impact on people’s physical and mental health. In winter, the lives of those who are forced to remain outside will seriously be at risk.’’

      At the camp in Velika Kladusa, where Hamdi lives, dozens of people sit in the mud and on piles of rubbish, awaiting the arrival of the doctors. On man has a cast on his arm and leg, the result, he says, of a police beating. Others show black eyes, bruises on their backs and legs, lumps and wounds on their heads, split lips, and scars on their legs.

      ‘‘There have been cases in which migrants claimed to have been stripped and forced to walk barefoot with temperatures below freezing,” said Stephane Moissaing, MSF’s head of mission in Serbia. “Cases where asylum seekers have told how police would beat children in front of their parents. From the information we have, up until now, it is a systematic and planned violence.”

      Karolina Augustova, an NKK volunteer, says violence has increased since October protests in which hundreds of asylum seekers marched from the north-western town of Velika Kladusa towards Croatia to object against pushbacks that violate the rights of people to seek asylum in Europe.

      The Bosnian police appear to be aware of the assaults. A Bosnian police agent guarding the camp in Velika Kladusa, who prefers to remain anonymous, points out a bruise on a boy’s leg. “You see this bruise?” he says. “It was the Croatian police. The Bosnian police know, but there is no clear and compelling evidence, just the accounts of the refugees and their wounds.”

      The majority of Bosnians live in peace with migrants and view them as refugees. The scars from the war that ravaged this area in the early 1990s are everywhere, in the abandoned homes riddled with machine gun fire and in the collective memory of Bosnians. People from Bihac and Velika Kladusa know what it means to flee from war. The minarets of the numerous mosques along the border are a reminder that Bosnia is the closest Muslim community in Europe.

      “I feel sorry for these people,’’ says the policeman on guard. ‘‘They remind me of the Bosnians when the war devastated our country.’’

      MSF, NNK and a number of other organisations have repeatedly reported and denounced violence perpetrated by the security forces in the Balkans, but Croatian police deny all the allegations.

      The Guardian has contacted the Croatian interior minister, the police and the Croatian government for comment, but has received no response.

      Abdul, 33, recently arrived in Velika Klaudusa after a journey that lasted over a year. He comes from Myanmar and has lost everything: his wife and children were killed, and he has no news of his father, mother and sisters. Abdul has heard about the violence and is worried. The migrants around him, with bandaged legs and noses and bleeding mouths, cause fear.

      “I lost everything, yes, it’s true,” he says. “But I have to get to Europe, one way or another. To make sense of what I lost. I owe it to my dead children. To my wife who was killed. To those who have not had the good fortune to have arrived here safe and sound.”

      https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2018/nov/14/didnt-give-a-damn-refugees-film-croatian-police-brutality-bosnia

    • A la frontière bosno-croate, des matraques pour les migrants

      Les policiers croates violentent les exilés bloqués entre les deux pays, nouveau point de passage de la route des Balkans. Mais dans la région, la #solidarité s’organise.

      L’intervention de la police bosnienne est fixée à 18 heures au poste frontière de Maljevac, entre la Bosnie-Herzégovine et la Croatie. Des dizaines de riverains s’y sont massées, ce jour-là, pour assister à cette opération qui va déloger les migrants qui campent depuis une semaine à 300 mètres de la douane. « Je n’ai rien contre les réfugiés, mais 200 personnes ne peuvent pas bloquer toute une ville », explique un Bosnien d’une cinquantaine d’années. Deux heures plus tard le passage est rouvert. Nous sommes à Velika Kladusa, dans le canton d’Una-Sana, dans le nord-ouest de la Bosnie, le long de la dernière déviation de la « route des Balkans ». Depuis le début de l’année, plus de 21 000 personnes (venant du Pakistan, d’Afghanistan ou encore d’Iran) ont choisi de traverser la Bosnie-Herzégovine dans l’espoir d’atteindre l’ouest de l’Europe. Et alors que 5 000 d’entre eux seraient toujours bloqués dans le pays, Sarajevo a enregistré ces dernières semaines une hausse des arrivées, avec environ 1 000 nouvelles entrées hebdomadaires.

      Sachets à emporter

      Dans ce petit bourg, la situation a dégénéré fin octobre lorsque des centaines de migrants ont tenté d’entrer de force en Croatie, avant d’être repoussés par les policiers. A la suite de ces heurts qui ont fait plusieurs blessés, Zagreb a décidé de suspendre pendant une semaine le transit à Maljevac : une très mauvaise nouvelle pour cette ville qui vit du commerce avec la Croatie et dont les habitants commencent à s’agacer d’une situation qui s’enlise. « La Croatie est à moins de 2 kilomètres dans cette direction », indique Asim Latic en pointant du doigt la plaine qui s’étend derrière les buissons. Avant d’ajouter : « Mais les réfugiés, eux, passent par les bois, et cela prend plusieurs jours de marche. » Ce restaurateur de Velika Kladusa, propriétaire de la pizzeria Teferic, fait partie des habitants qui se sont engagés dans l’aide aux migrants dès février, lorsque des dizaines, puis des centaines de personnes sont arrivées dans ce coin de la Bosnie.

      Pendant neuf mois, il a offert chaque jour 400 repas à autant d’exilés. Début novembre, après une chute des dons de la communauté locale, il a bien cru devoir mettre la clé sous la porte. « Les Bosniens ont aussi connu la guerre, mais ils sont fatigués », explique ce grand gaillard que les réfugiés appellent « papa ». De temps en temps, il leur prépare de la nourriture dans des sachets à emporter, « pour qu’ils survivent dans la forêt ». Le chemin des bois est emprunté par tous ceux qui ne peuvent pas se permettre les tarifs des passeurs : 2 000 euros ou plus pour aller en voiture à Trieste en Italie, 1 200 euros pour descendre à Split en Croatie. A pied, il faut marcher environ une semaine, assurent les migrants : 80 kilomètres en Croatie, puis, une fois entrés en Slovénie, on se dirige vers l’Italie ou l’Autriche. Mais c’est sans compter sur l’intervention de la police croate, véritable inconnue dans le game - nom donné ici aux tentatives de passage de la frontière.

      Non loin de la séparation bosno-croate, Aadi a décidé de planter sur sa tente le drapeau bleu et jaune de la Bosnie-Herzégovine. « Les Bosniens sont des gens accueillants. Ce sont les policiers croates qui nous posent problème », dit-il. « Les policiers m’ont violemment frappé avec une matraque. Les conditions hygiéniques de ce camp ont fait le reste », renchérit Gabdar, un jeune Irakien qui arbore une plaie infectée à la main droite, où du pus s’est formé sous les croûtes. Youssef, un Tunisien trentenaire, se plaint que la police croate n’a pas seulement détruit son smartphone, mais aussi la powerbank, cette batterie externe indispensable à ceux qui passent de longs mois sur les routes.

      Ecrans brisés

      « Police, problem » est un refrain mille fois entendu. Dès que l’on mentionne les forces de l’ordre croates, les migrants sortent leurs portables. La multitude d’écrans brisés et les connecteurs d’alimentation rendus inutilisables avec des tournevis sont la preuve - disent-ils - des abus des policiers. Une accusation difficile à prouver, mais qui a attiré l’attention du Conseil de l’Europe (CoE). Début octobre, la commissaire aux droits de l’homme Dunja Mijatovic a invité Zagreb à faire la lumière sur ces allégations.

      D’après le CoE et le Haut Commissariat des Nations unies pour les réfugiés, la Croatie aurait expulsé collectivement 2 500 migrants depuis le début de 2018, « parmi eux, 1 500 personnes ont affirmé n’avoir pas pu soumettre une demande d’asile, tandis que 700 disent avoir été victimes de violences ou de vols de la part des policiers croates ». Joint par mail, le ministère de l’Intérieur de Zagreb assure que la police agit « dans le respect de la loi et des traités internationaux » et que « les vérifications effectuées jusque-là n’ont prouvé aucun cas de violence ».

      Au centre de Bihac, à 60 kilomètres au sud de Velika Kladusa, Ali, un Pakistanais de 17 ans se jette dans l’eau glaciale de la rivière Una et entreprend de se savonner les cheveux. Sur les bancs du parc alentour, d’autres migrants tuent le temps, cigarette ou smartphone à la main. La scène est devenue courante dans cette ville de 60 000 habitants, et la situation qui s’éternise agace certains locaux. Plusieurs pétitions ont fait leur apparition et quelques manifestations ont rassemblé un millier de personnes à Bihac, demandant aux autorités de trouver une solution à la présence des migrants en centre-ville.

      « Je n’ai rien contre les réfugiés, mais ces gens ne viennent pas de pays en guerre, ce sont des migrants économiques », affirme Sej Ramic, conseiller municipal à Bihac et professeur d’art, modérateur du groupe Facebook « Stop invaziji migranata ! Udruženje gradjana Bihaća » (« Stop à l’invasion des migrants ! Collectif de citoyens de Bihac »). Un argumentaire devenu habituel au sein de l’Union européenne, mais qu’on avait moins l’habitude d’entendre en Bosnie, pays lui-même marqué par une forte émigration.

      Face à cette opposition grandissante, le gouvernement du canton a entrepris d’arrêter les bus et les trains en provenance de Sarajevo et de renvoyer vers la capitale tous les migrants qui en descendent. Et dans le centre-ville de Biha, les policiers renvoient les migrants qui traînent vers le Dacki Dom. Cet ancien dortoir étudiant abandonné, dont la carcasse de béton nu se dresse au milieu des bois, héberge environ 1 000 personnes dans des conditions très précaires. Des centaines d’autres sont logées dans les environs, dans une ancienne usine de réfrigérateurs et dans un hôtel fermé depuis de nombreuses années. D’autres campent ou squattent des maisons abandonnées des alentours. L’objectif de l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations (OIM) est « d’atteindre, dans les prochains jours, une capacité d’hébergement de 5 000 personnes sur l’ensemble du territoire bosnien », indique Peter Van der Auweraert, coordinateur de l’OIM pour les Balkans occidentaux. Cependant, « si le flux actuel de 1 000 entrées par semaine devait continuer, nous serons bientôt dans une situation très compliquée », poursuit-il, et note qu’avec l’hiver qui arrive, « ce qui coince, c’est le timing ».

      L’UE a récemment débloqué 7,2 millions d’euros pour aider la Bosnie, l’un des pays les plus pauvres des Balkans, à gérer le flux migratoire. Alors qu’à Bihac les ouvriers s’affairent à sécuriser les bâtiments et que les ONG tentent de reloger les centaines de personnes toujours dans des tentes, Van der Auweraert souligne le manque de volonté politique des autorités locales. L’imbroglio institutionnel bosnien, hérité des accords de Dayton, complique davantage le processus décisionnel.

      Il est midi à Velika Kladusa, et la pizzeria Teferic est en pleine distribution. Des dizaines de migrants patientent pour s’asseoir devant une assiette de macaronis. Dans la cuisine, Halil et Refik - « c’est lui qui a arrêté le chauffeur de Mladic pendant la guerre », nous glisse Asim - s’affairent autour d’une énorme casserole. Deux jeunes Indiens et un Pakistanais de passage prêtent main forte à la petite équipe. Après neuf mois de travail bénévole dans la pizzeria, Asim est fatigué « physiquement et mentalement ». S’il a trouvé de l’aide auprès de l’association néerlandaise Lemon Foundation, l’avenir de leur activité reste fragile. Tout en contemplant le va-et-vient des migrants à l’extérieur, il secoue la tête : « Mais que vont faire ces gens ? »

      https://www.liberation.fr/planete/2018/11/20/a-la-frontiere-bosno-croate-des-matraques-pour-les-migrants_1693271

    • Croatia: Migrants Pushed Back to Bosnia and Herzegovina

      Croatian police are pushing migrants and asylum seekers back to Bosnia and Herzegovina, in some cases violently, and without giving them the possibility to seek asylum, Human Rights Watch said.

      Human Rights Watch interviewed 20 people, including 11 heads of families and 1 unaccompanied boy, who said that Croatian police deported them to Bosnia and Herzegovina without due process after detaining them deep inside Croatian territory. Sixteen, including women and children, said police beat them with batons, kicked and punched them, stole their money, and either stole or destroyed their mobile phones.

      “Croatia has an obligation to protect asylum seekers and migrants,” said Lydia Gall, Balkans and Eastern EU researcher at Human Rights Watch. “Instead, the Croatian police viciously beat asylum seekers and pushed them back over the border.”

      All 20 interviewees gave detailed accounts of being detained by people who either identified themselves as Croatian police or wore uniforms matching those worn by Croatian police. Seventeen gave consistent descriptions of the police vans used to transport them to the border. One mother and daughter were transported in what they described as a police car. Two people said that police had fired shots in the air, and five said that the police were wearing masks.

      These findings confirm mounting evidence of abuse at Croatia’s external borders, Human Rights Watch said. In December 2016, Human Rights Watch documented similar abuses by Croatian police at Croatia’s border with Serbia. The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) reported in August 2018 that it had received reports Croatia had summarily pushed back 2,500 migrants and asylum seekers to Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina since the beginning of the year, at times accompanied by violence and theft.

      In response to a call by the Council of Europe’s human rights commissioner to investigate the allegations, Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic in September denied any wrongdoing and questioned the sources of the information. Police in Donji Lapac, on the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina, refused to provide Croatia’s ombudswoman, Lora Vidović, access to police records on treatment of migrants and told her that police are acting in accordance with the law.

      In a December 4 letter, Interior Minister Davor Bozinovic responded to a detailed description of the Human Rights Watch findings. He said that the evidence of summary returns and violence was insufficient to bring criminal prosecutions, that the allegations could not be confirmed, and that migrants accuse Croatian police in the hope that it will help them enter Croatia. He said that his ministry does not support any type of violence or intolerance by police officers.

      Croatia has a bilateral readmission agreement with Bosnia and Herzegovina that allows Croatia to return third-country nationals without legal permission to stay in the country. According to the Security Ministry of Bosnia and Herzegovina, under the agreement, between January and November 27, Croatia returned 493 people to Bosnia and Herzegovina, 265 of whom were Turkish nationals. None of the people Human Rights Watch interviewed underwent any formal return procedure before being forced back over the border.

      The summary return of asylum seekers without consideration of their protection needs is contrary to European Union asylum law, the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, and the 1951 Refugee Convention.

      Croatian authorities should conduct thorough and transparent investigations of abuse implicating their officials and hold those responsible to account, Human Rights Watch said. They should ensure full cooperation with the Ombudswoman’s inquiry, as required by national law and best practice for independent human rights institutions. The European Commission should call on Croatia, an EU member state, to halt and investigate summary returns of asylum seekers to Bosnia and Herzegovina and allegations of violence against asylum seekers. The Commission should also open legal proceedings against Croatia for violating EU laws, Human Rights Watch said.

      As a result of the 2016 border closures on the Western Balkan route, thousands of asylum seekers were stranded, the majority in Serbia, and found new routes toward the EU. In 2018, migrant and asylum seeker arrivals increased in Bosnia and Herzegovina, from fewer than 1,000 in 2017 to approximately 22,400, according to the European Commission. The Commission estimates that 6,000 migrants and asylum seekers are currently in the country. Bosnia and Herzegovina has granted international protection to only 17 people since 2008. In 2017, 381 people applied for asylum there.

      Bosnia and Herzegovina has only one official reception center for asylum seekers near Sarajevo, with capacity to accommodate just 156 people. Asylum seekers and migrants in the border towns of Bihac and Velika Kladusa, where Human Rights Watch conducted the interviews, are housed in temporary facilities managed by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) – a dilapidated building, a refurbished warehouse, and former hotels – or they sleep outdoors. The IOM and UNHCR have been improving the facilities. The EU has allocated over €9 million to support humanitarian assistance for asylum seekers and migrants in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

      “Just because the EU is sending humanitarian aid to refugees in Bosnia and Herzegovina, that does not justify turning a blind eye to violence at the Croatian border,” Gall said. “Brussels should press Zagreb to comply with EU law, investigate alleged abuse, and provide fair and efficient access to asylum.”

      For detailed accounts by the people interviewed, please see below.

      Human Rights Watch interviewed 13 men, 6 women, and one 15-year-old unaccompanied boy. All interviewees’ names have been changed in order to protect their security and privacy. All interviews were conducted in English or with the aid of a Persian or Arabic speaking interpreter. Human Rights Watch informed interviewees of the purpose of the interview and its voluntary nature, and they verbally consented to be interviewed.

      Denied Access to Asylum Procedure, Summarily Returned

      All 20 people interviewed said that people who identified themselves as Croatian police or whom they described as police detained them well inside Croatian territory and subsequently returned them to Bosnia and Herzegovina without any consideration of asylum claims or human rights obstacles to their return.

      Nine said that police detained them and others and took them to a police station in Croatia. The others said that police officers took them directly to the border with Bosnia-Herzegovina and made them cross.

      Those taken to police stations said they were searched, photographed, and questioned about details such as their name, country of origin, age, and their route entering Croatia. They were not given copies of any forms. They said they were held there in rooms with limited or no seating for between 2 and 24 hours, then taken to the border. Three people said they asked for asylum at the police station but that the police ignored or laughed at them. Six others said they dared not speak because police officers told them to remain quiet.

      Faven F. and Kidane K., a married couple in their thirties from Eritrea, said they had been walking for seven days when they were detained on November 9, close to Rijeka, 200 kilometers from the border. They said that four men in green uniforms detained them in the forest and took them in a windowless white van without proper seats to a police station in Rijeka:

      They delivered us to new police. One was in plain clothes, the other one in dark blue uniform that said “Policija” on it…. At the station, they gave us a paper in English where we had to fill in name, surname, and place of birth…. A lady officer asked us questions about our trip, how we got there, who helped us. We told them that if Croatia can give us asylum, we would like to stay. The lady officer just laughed. They wrote our names on a white paper and some number and made us hold them for a mug shot. Then they kept us in the cell the whole night and didn’t give us food, but we could drink tap water in the bathroom.

      Yaran Y., a 19-year-old from Iraq, was carrying his 14-year old sister Dilva, who has a disability and uses a wheelchair, on his back when they were detained along with at least five others at night in the forest. Yaran Y. said he told officers he wanted asylum for his sister, but that the police just laughed. “They told us to go to Brazil and ask for asylum there,” Yaran Y. said.

      Ardashir A., a 33-year-old Iranian, was travelling with his wife and 7-year-old daughter in a group of 18 people, including 3 other children, the youngest of whom is under age 2. He said that Croatian police detained the group 12 kilometers inside Croatian territory on November 15 and took them to a police station:

      They [Croatian police] brought us to a room, like a prison. They took our bags and gave us only a few slices of bread. There were no chairs, we sat on the floor. Two people in civilian clothes came after a while, I don’t know if they were police, but they took a group picture of us and refused to let us go to the toilet. A 10-year-old child really needed to go but wasn’t allowed so he had to endure. After two hours they took us … to the border.

      Adal A., a 15-year-old boy from Afghanistan traveling on his own said that he was detained on November 15 near Zagreb and taken in a white windowless van to a police station:

      They searched us at the police station and took our phones, power banks, bags, and everything we had. They took three kinds of pictures: front, side, and back. We had to hold a paper with a number. I was asked questions about my name, where I am from, my age, and about the smuggler. I told them I’m 15. We then sat in a room for 24 hours and received no food but could get water from the tap in the toilet.

      Palmira P., a 45-year-old Iranian, said that a female police officer mistreated Palmira’s 11-year-old daughter during a body search in a police station courtyard on the outskirts of Rijeka in early November: “She pulled my daughter’s pants down in front of everyone. My daughter still has nightmares about this policewoman, screaming out in the middle of the night, ‘Don’t do it, don’t do it!’”

      Everyone interviewed said that Croatian police confiscated and never returned or destroyed their phones and destroyed power banks and phone chargers. Four people said that Croatian police forced them to unlock their phones before stealing them.

      Madhara M., a 32-year-old from Iran, said a police officer found a €500 bill in his pocket on November 15: “He looked at it, inspected it, and admired it and then demonstratively put it in his pocket in front of me.”

      Accounts of Violence and Abuse

      Seventeen people described agonizing journeys ranging from 15 minutes to five hours in windowless white police vans to the border. In two cases, people described the vans with a deep dark blue/black stripe running through the middle and a police light on top. A Human Rights Watch researcher saw a police van matching that description while driving through Croatia.

      Croatian roads close to the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina cross windy, mountainous terrain. People interviewed said they had experienced nausea, vomited, or felt extreme cold or heat in the van. A 23-year-old Syrian woman said she believed the difficult van ride and pushback caused her to miscarry her 7-week pregnancy. Amez A., a 28-year-old Iraqi, said police sprayed what he thought was teargas into the van before closing the back doors and driving off, making everyone in the car vomit and have difficulty breathing.

      Sixteen people, including women and children, said that they were slapped, pummelled with fists, beaten with police batons made of rubber or wood, or kicked by people they described as or who identified themselves as Croatian police during the pushbacks.

      In many cases, the violence was accompanied by abusive language in English. Human Rights Watch observed marks and bruises on nine people and viewed photographs of injuries on four more who said they were the result of beatings by Croatian police officers. Four people said that they required treatment at Bosnian hospitals.

      Adal A., the 15-year-old unaccompanied boy, described a particularly vicious beating on November 16:

      They wore dark blue uniforms with masks, and as I exited the van, both police hit me with their batons. I felt a blow to my neck and I fell forward and wanted to get up. At that point, I was on the Bosnian side of the border stones, where another six Croatian police officers stood waiting. They were all over me, beating me. I don’t know how they beat me, but it was hard and strong, and I tried to protect my face. I was so badly beaten on my back that I still can’t sleep on it properly because of the pain. When they saw that my nose was bleeding, and that my hand was injured and that I couldn’t walk, they stopped…. They yelled “Go!” and as I was trying to leave, they fired guns in the air.

      Human Rights Watch interviewed Adal A. four days after he said this had happened and observed marks and bruises on his legs and arms.

      Aftab A., 37, from Iran, said that police officers in dark blue uniforms beat him and his 12-year-old son in what he called the “Tunnel of Death:”

      They [police] make this tunnel [lined up on each side] and you have to pass. They took us out of the van one by one and they started beating me with batons from both sides. I was beaten on my arm, shoulder, and on my knee with batons. My son was beaten with batons on his back and on his head…We kept screaming ‘my son my son!’ or ‘my dad my dad!’ but they didn’t care. They kept beating at us until we crossed the border. Even my wife was struck across her back with a baton. The child was so scared and was crying for half an hour and then wouldn’t speak for a long time.

      Madhara M., 32, from Iran, was taken to the border on November 15 along with four others, including a married couple. He said that Croatian police beat him and then threw him into a ditch he said separates Croatia from Bosnia and Herzegovina:

      There were about eight police officers in front of the van. But there were more behind them making sure we can’t run away. The first punch broke my tooth… I fell, and the officer rolled me over, and punched me in the eye. It was so painful, I tried to escape by crawling, but the police struck me with the baton on my back. Suddenly, I received a second blow on the same eye. Then the police officers grabbed me and threw me into the ditch. All along, they were laughing and swearing in English, things like ‘I will fuck your mother.’

      Bahadur B. and Nabila N., both 32 and from Iran, are a married couple who were traveling with Madhara M. Nabila N., who was three-months’ pregnant at the time, described the violence at the border:

      They [Croatian police] were standing four on one side and four on the other side. We call it the ‘terror tunnel.’ They told us to get out. Bahadur tried to help me down from the van, as I was stiff from the ride. When he did, the police started beating him…I turned and screamed at them to stop beating my husband, but…. I stumbled on a bag in the darkness…When I got up, I was face-to-face with a police officer who was wearing a mask. I kept screaming, “Please don’t do it, we will leave” but he deliberately hit me hard with his baton across my hand. I kept screaming “baby, baby!” during the whole ordeal but they didn’t listen, they just laughed.

      Both Yaran Y., 19, and his sister Dilva, 14, who has a physical disability, said they required medical treatment after Croatian police used physical force during the pushback in early July. Yaran Y. said:

      I was carrying Dilva on my back the whole way while others pushed her wheelchair. Our family travelled with five other people. It was dark, when the police surprised us by firing shots in the air. They police wore dark or black color uniforms and there were six or seven of them. I asked one of the police officers for asylum but he harshly pushed me so I fell with my sister on my back. In the fall, my sister and I landed on a sharp wooden log which severely injured her foot and my hand.

      A Human Rights Watch researcher observed scars on Dilva’s foot and Yaran’s hand and saw pictures of the fresh injuries.

      Sirvan S., 38, from Iraq, said Croatian police in dark blue uniforms beat him and his youngest son, age 6, during a pushback on November 14: “My son and I were beaten with a rubber baton. I was beaten in the head and on my leg. My son was beaten with a baton on his leg and head as well as he was running from the police.” Sirvan’s wife, 16-year-old daughter, and 14-year-old son witnessed the violence.

      Gorkem G., 30, travelling with his 25-year-old pregnant wife, 5-year-old son, and 2-year-old daughter, said that Croatian police pushed his son, so he fell hard to the ground. “He only wanted to say “hi” to the police,” Gorkem G. said

      Family members described the anger, frustration, and trauma they experienced seeing the police officers beat their loved ones. A 10-year-old Yazidi boy from Iraq said, “I saw how police kicked my father in his back and how they beat him all over. It made me angry.” His father, Hussein H., said that police officers had dragged him out of the van at the border and kicked and punched him when he was on the ground.

      Fatima F., 34, a Syrian mother of six, travelled with her husband’s 16-year-old brother and three of her children, ages 2, 4, and 10. She said that three police officers in dark uniforms beat her husband’s brother in front of her and her children:

      They were merciless […] One officer was by the van, one in the middle of the line of people, and one close to the path [into Bosnia and Herzegovina]. They kept beating the others with batons, and kicking. They [the officers] saw me and the kids but they just kept beating the men despite the kids crying. They didn’t beat me or the children, but the children were very afraid when they saw the men being beaten. My oldest girl kept screaming when she saw my husband’s brother get beaten…[she] screams out in the middle of the night.

      In three cases, people said they were forced to cross ice-cold rivers or streams even though they were near a bridge.

      Thirty-year-old Abu Hassan A. from Iran, travelling in a group of seven other single men, said:

      They [police] were wearing masks. There was a bridge about 50-60 meters away. More than six police were guarding the bridge. It [the stream] was about 5-6 meters wide and waist high and muddy. They told us we have to cross. Then the police… beat me with batons and kicked me, and the first handed me over to the second police who did the same thing, and then handed me over to the third, who did the same thing. After that, I was close to the riverbank, where two other police were waiting. The first one beat me again with baton and pushed me toward the other. They beat me on the legs, hands, arms, shoulders. This is what they did to force us to go into the water and across. I could barely stand or walk for a week after.

      https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/12/11/croatia-migrants-pushed-back-bosnia-and-herzegovina

    • Why are police in Croatia attacking asylum seekers trapped in the Balkans?

      Hearing increasing reports of police brutality against refugees on the Croatia-Bosnia border, Human Rights Watch is demanding action from Zagreb and the EU Commission.

      In November, I spent four days talking to migrants, including asylum seekers, in dilapidated, freezing buildings in Bihac and Velika Kladusa in Bosnia Herzegovina, an area close to the Croatian border. I heard the same story over and over: Croatian police officers beat and robbed them before illegally forcing them over the border to Bosnia and Herzegovina.

      Unfortunately, in my work as the Eastern Europe and Balkans researcher at Human Rights Watch, these stories are not new to me. But what really struck me this time around was the sheer brutality and cruelty of the police assaults.

      “They are merciless,” 34-year-old Fatima*, from Syria, said of Croatian police officers. She and her three young children, the youngest only two years old, were forced to watch Croatian police officers beat her 16-year-old brother-in-law. “My 10-year-old daughter suffered psychologically since it happened, having nightmares,” Fatima said.

      Nabila*, an Iranian woman who was three months pregnant at the time, told me a police officer struck her on her hand with a baton though she told him and other officers repeatedly that she was pregnant.

      Sirvan*, from Iraq, said a Croatian police officer beat his six-year-old son with a baton on his leg and his head as he was trying to run away from the police beatings.

      Yaran*, also from Iraq, was carrying his 14-year-old sister, Dilva*, who has a physical disability and uses a wheelchair, when Croatian police officers manhandled them. “When they captured us, I immediately told them ‘asylum’ but one police officer just pushed me hard so I fell backwards with my sister on my back.” They both required medical treatment after they were forced back to Bosnia and Herzegovina.

      Croatia’s interior ministry has denied any wrongdoing but testimonies from migrants continue to emerge.

      Since March 2016, when the Western Balkan route was closed, many people have found themselves stuck in the Balkans. After fleeing countries such as Syria, Afghanistan, Iran, Eritrea, Pakistan and Bangladesh, people had travelled through Turkey to Greece or Bulgaria, and onwards to Macedonia and Serbia.

      There are now between 6,000 and 8,000 people trapped in Serbia and around 6,000 in Bosnia and Herzegovina, who want to move onwards to EU states and particularly to Western Europe.

      Many have tried to cross to Hungary and Croatia but are met with violence from border guards. Most of the people I talked to had been walking for days inside Croatia by the time police detained them.

      Some were taken to police stations, where they were denied food for up to 24 hours; others were taken directly to the border. They were transported in windowless locked vans on winding mountainous roads on trips of up to five hours. People kept sliding off the narrow benches, bumping into each other, and throwing up.

      At the border, a “Tunnel of Terror” – as some called it — greeted them. A gauntlet of police officers beat them, pushing each person to the next officer and then to the next, laughing and mocking them on the way.

      Tired and beaten, migrants and asylum seekers were then chased down a slippery slope or thrown into a ditch four to five meters deep that is the de facto border between Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina or made to wade across an ice-cold stream.

      Most of the 20 people I interviewed, including parents with their children, the girl with a disability, and pregnant women, said they were brutally forced across the border in the cold of dark winter nights.

      Every person I interviewed also said that Croatian police robbed them of their phones and money. They kept the good phones, forcing people to surrender their passcodes, and smashed the rest. Money, if found, was stolen too.

      All this is going on at the EU’s borders. With total impunity.

      And it has been going on for some time. I documented similar abuses on Croatia’s border with Serbia two years ago. The government rejected our allegations and the EU didn’t act. In two years, rather than improving, the situation has got worse.

      More recently, the Croatian government dismissed concerns raised by UN refugee agency UNHCR and the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights and told us they didn’t have enough evidence to bring prosecutions and that allegations can’t be confirmed.

      The EU provides funds for humanitarian assistance to migrants and asylum seekers in Bosnia and Herzegovina that, while helpful, cannot justify turning a blind eye to neighbouring member state, Croatia, blatantly breaking EU laws and ignoring violence committed against those same people.

      Croatian authorities need to take these allegations seriously. They need to immediately open an investigation into the summary returns and violence by Croatian police against migrants and asylum seekers. And they need to hold those responsible to account.

      It’s also well past time for EU institutions to break their silence and send a strong message to Zagreb that pushbacks and violence flies in the face of Croatia’s legal obligations. The EU should make failure by Zagreb to address this issue come at a serious cost.

      *Names have been changed to protect identities.

      https://lacuna.org.uk/migration/why-police-croatia-attacking-asylum-seekers-trapped-in-the-balkans

      #Velika_Kladusa

    • Croatia violating EU law by sending asylum seekers back to Bosnia

      Hidden cameras capture apparent expulsions by Croatian border police in forest.

      Croatian police are returning groups of asylum seekers across the EU’s external border with Bosnia, a video obtained by the Guardian suggests, in an apparent breach of EU law.

      Footage shared by the watchdog organisation Border Violence Monitoring (BVM) shows a number of alleged collective expulsions or “pushbacks” of migrants in a forest near Lohovo, in Bosnian territory.

      The videos, filmed on hidden cameras between 29 September and 10 October, capture 54 incidents of people being pushed back in groups from Croatia into Bosnia with 368 people in total returned, according to the footage.

      Bosnia-Herzegovina’s security minister, Dragan Mektić, told the news channel N1 the behaviour of the Croatian police was “a disgrace for an EU country”.

      Croatian police are returning groups of asylum seekers across the EU’s external border with Bosnia, a video obtained by the Guardian suggests, in an apparent breach of EU law.

      Footage shared by the watchdog organisation Border Violence Monitoring (BVM) shows a number of alleged collective expulsions or “pushbacks” of migrants in a forest near Lohovo, in Bosnian territory.

      The videos, filmed on hidden cameras between 29 September and 10 October, capture 54 incidents of people being pushed back in groups from Croatia into Bosnia with 368 people in total returned, according to the footage.

      Bosnia-Herzegovina’s security minister, Dragan Mektić, told the news channel N1 the behaviour of the Croatian police was “a disgrace for an EU country”.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CAmdAjzcrcA


      https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/dec/17/croatia-violating-eu-law-by-sending-back-asylum-seekers-to-bosnia?CMP=s

    • ‘Unverifiable information from unknown migrants’? – First footage of push-backs on the Croatian-Bosnian border

      By now our database contains more than 150 push-back reports from the Bosnian-Croatian border. In light of this figure it seems hard to deny this illegal practice of collective expulsions of people seeking protection, perpetrated by the Croatian police and often accompanied by violence. The people returning from the border with broken arms or legs, or showing bloodshot eyes and marks of beatings with batons on their backs, are no isolated cases. Their injuries and testimonies prove irrefutably institutionalised and systematically applied practices – even if the Croatian Minister of the Interior [1] continues to deny these accusations and instead prefers to accuse refugees of self-injury [2]. Meanwhile, various large international media have taken up the topic and report on developments at the Bosnian-Croatian border. The Guardian, for example, recently published a video showing a refugee bleeding from several wounds just after a pushback [3]. Yet, for some reason, up to now the available evidence has not been enough to hold the responsible persons and institutions accountable. New video material provided to BVM by an anonymous group should now close this gap in evidence.

      VIDEO MATERIAL PROVES ILLEGAL PUSH-BACKS FROM CROATIA

      On 20 November we received a letter containing extensive video footage from the Bosnian-Croatian border area. For security reasons, the informants themselves prefer to remain anonymous; yet for the extensiveness and level of detail of the material in concordance with other reports, we consider it authentic. The footage was filmed by hidden cameras in a forest near Lohovo, Bosnia-Herzegovina, (Coordinates 44.7316124, 15.9133454) between 29 September and 10 October 2018 and show 54 push-backs.

      At least 350 refugees, including small children, minors and women, can clearly be seen on the video recordings as victims of these pushbacks, which take place several times a day and at night. Should they occur just as frequently as during the filmed period, the number of push-backs at this border crossing alone exceeds 150 per month. For the first time, the material can unambiguously prove that the Croatian police systematically conducts collective expulsions on Bosnian territory.

      The group’s report accompanying the material reads:

      “These push-backs are not conducted at an official border checkpoint and without the presence of Bosnian officials and are therefore illegal. In addition, documentation by various NGOs suggests that asylum applications by refugees were previously disregarded.”

      These expulsions over the green border do not follow formal return procedures [4] and can thus not be justified with the 2007 readmission agreement between the EU and Bosnia. The only legal way to return people would be through the readmission process at the official border crossing after a readmission application has been made to the Bosnian authorities.

      PROOF OF MULTIPLE CRIMINAL OFFENCES

      In not complying with these procedures, the police officers involved violate international law, in particular the prohibition of collective expulsions laid down in Article 4 of the Fourth Additional Protocol to the European Convention on Human Rights [5] and Article 19 of the European Charter of Fundamental Rights [6]. Similarly, the right to asylum, as agreed in the Geneva Convention on Refugees [7] and Article 18 of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, is not granted.

      “According to first-hand accounts, the officials inflict violence during approximately one in five push-backs in Lohovo, which is considerably less than on other push-back locations on the Bosnian-Croatian border. Here as in other locations, mobile phones are almost always destroyed and returned in a yellow plastic bag.”

      In the videos themselves, the violence becomes apparent in the form of kicks and insults. Shots and screams that can be heard at close range indicate that the beatings and humilliations which are extensively documented by various NGOs [8], take place nearby.

      Interestingly enough, the group seems to be planning to release even more video material from the border:

      “We already have more recordings from other locations and will publish them as soon as we have collected enough material. Since push-backs at other locations often take place at night, we work here with thermal cameras and other special equipment.”

      With their work, the group aims to contribute to the end of push-backs and police violence in Croatia, they state:

      “We demand that the human rights violations at the Bosnian-Croatian border stop immediately. For this it is necessary that they are examined in an official investigation both internally, by the Croatian Minister of the Interior, and by the European Commission, which co-finances Croatian border security from the Internal Security Fund (ISF).”

      BVM supports these demands. Now more than ever, the evidence is calling for immediate investigations by the Croatian authorities as well as by the European Union of which Croatia is a member state and which co-funds Croatian border security. The European Commission should call on Croatia to stop and investigate collective expulsions of asylum seekers to Bosnia and Herzegovina as well as allegations of violence perpetrated by Croatian officers. The EU Commission should also open legal proceedings against Croatia for violating EU laws.

      We would like to make the material that was sent to us available to the general public, in order to make them visible as evidence of the everyday events at the borders of the European Union.

      The data package, including the report, an overview of the content of the material and all the videos, can be accessed or downloaded here:

      https://files.borderviolence.eu/index.php/s/EYZdTo0OeGXrCqW

      In case of queries we can establish encrypted communication with the anonymous group.


      https://www.borderviolence.eu/proof-of-push-backs

    • Human rights group files complaint against Croatian police

      A Croatian NGO working with migrants has filed a complaint against police who it claims used excessive force and violence against migrants, illegally pushing them back at the border with Bosnia.
      A human rights organization in Croatia on Wednesday filed a complaint against several Croatian police officers, whose identities are unknown. The organization claims that they are guilty of using excessive force, violence and other illegal behavior against migrants and refugees that were pushed back at the border with Bosnia.

      The complaint by the Center for Peace Studies (CMS), a Zagreb-based NGO, is based on footage published in recent days by Border Violence Monitoring (BVM), an international organization that collects evidence of abuse and illegal push-backs against migrants on the Balkan route.

      Video and witness statements

      BVM received the footage from an anonymous source in November. The organization said that it had verified that the videos were credible. They also argued that the footage was in line with hundreds of witness statements from migrants collected over the past year, according to which Croatian police systematically push back migrants towards Bosnia.

      The footage was reportedly filmed in September and allegedly shows a group of migrants lined up and Croatian police forcing them to return to Bosnia, without giving them the possibility to ask for asylum or international humanitarian protection. BVM said that this was against international law, because the incidents occurred in the so-called “green zone,” in the forest between the two countries, not at border crossings, and without the presence of Bosnian border guards.

      The footage also shows some incidents of Croatian police kicking, threatening and insulting migrants.

      Collective forced push-backs

      The Center for Peace Studies said that, for the first time, the footage offers undeniable proof corroborating the many complaints against Croatian police presented in recent months by international organizations including the Council of Europe, UNHCR, and Human Rights Watch. “The footage shows collective forced push-backs and the use of unjustified violence,” CMS said.

      The NGO has asked for an investigation by the judiciary as well as the resignation of the interior minister and some high-ranking members of Croatian police.

      Croatian Interior Minister Davor Bozinovic said that he had not seen any video in which Croatian police made use of violence and that there was no substantial evidence that showed illegal conduct by the police. Croatia has always rejected accusations that its police engage in illegal behavior against migrants.

      http://www.infomigrants.net/en/post/14039/human-rights-group-files-complaint-against-croatian-police

    • En Bosnie, des milliers de réfugiés sont bloqués dans la neige aux frontières de l’Union européenne

      La Bosnie-Herzégovine est devenue un cul-de-sac aux portes de l’Union européenne, où sont bloqués plusieurs milliers d’exilés. Malgré les violences de la police croate et une neige redoutable, ils cherchent à continuer leur route vers l’Ouest.

      Depuis l’été, les témoignages et les rapports des organisations internationales s’accumulent : la police croate maltraite systématiquement les migrants et les réfugiés, et procède à des rapatriements forcés extra-légaux en Bosnie-Herzégovine. Le 16 décembre, le réseau Border violence monitoring a ainsi publié d’accablantes vidéos montrant comment les forces de l’ordre regroupaient des réfugiés arrêtés alors qu’ils tentaient d’entrer en Croatie et les forçaient à reprendre la route de la Bosnie-Herzégovine.

      Ces vidéos, réalisées en caméra cachée, documentent 54 cas de refoulement, effectués entre le 29 septembre et le 10 octobre dans la forêt de Lehovo, dans les régions montagneuses et très peuplées de Krajina, qui marquent la frontière entre les deux pays. Sur les vidéos, on peut dénombrer au moins 350 réfugiés, dont des femmes et des enfants. « Pour la première fois, des documents prouvent que la police croate mène systématiquement des expulsions collectives sur le territoire bosnien, note Border Violence Monitoring. Ces refoulements ne sont pas menés à un poste-frontière et ont lieu sans présence de représentants légaux de la Bosnie-Herzégovine, ils sont donc contraires au droit international. »

      https://twitter.com/Border_Violence/status/1074178137217478656

      Deux jours plus tôt, Human Rights Watch publiait un rapport accablant sur les actes de violence et de torture commis par la police croate. Zagreb interdit bien souvent aux réfugiés de déposer une demande d’asile, contrevenant ainsi à ses obligations internationales. L’organisation internationale affirme avoir recueilli les témoignages de 20 personnes, dont 16 évoquaient des brutalités systématiques, voire de véritables actes de torture commis par les forces de l’ordre croates, ainsi que des vols d’argent et de téléphones portables.

      Le Commissaire des Nations unies pour les réfugiés confirmait de son côté en août 2018 avoir reçu des rapports qui soulignaient que la Croatie avait illégalement refoulé 2 500 migrants et demandeurs d’asile vers la Bosnie-Herzégovine et la Serbie depuis le début de l’année dernière. Ces accusations ont été réfutées par le premier ministre croate Andrej Plenković, dans une réponse à une interpellation du Conseil de l’Europe.

      Depuis plusieurs mois, les associations et les collectifs croates de soutien aux réfugiés font d’ailleurs l’objet d’un véritable harcèlement : attaques de leurs locaux ou de leurs véhicules par des « inconnus », poursuites judiciaires contre plusieurs militants. Ces collectifs viennent d’ailleurs de publier une « Lettre ouverte aux citoyens de l’Union européenne depuis la périphérie », soulignant que les politiques de fermeture des frontières pourraient faire basculer tous ces pays de la périphérie européenne – membres ou non de l’Union – dans des régimes de plus en plus autoritaires.

      Dragan Mektić, le ministre de la sécurité de Bosnie-Herzégovine, a pourtant confirmé à la télévision N1 la réalité de ces mauvais traitements. « Le comportement de la police croate est une honte pour un pays membre de l’Union européenne. Les policiers se font les complices des trafiquants, en poussant les migrants dans les mains des réseaux criminels », a-t-il expliqué. Depuis la fermeture de la « route des Balkans », au printemps 2016, et l’édification d’un mur de barbelés le long de la frontière hongroise, les candidats à l’exil empruntent de nouvelles routes depuis la Grèce, transitant par l’Albanie, le Monténégro et la Bosnie-Herzégovine, ou directement depuis la Serbie vers la Bosnie-Herzégovine, devenue une étape obligatoire sur la route vers l’Union européenne.

      La région de Bihać constitue effectivement un cul-de-sac. Selon les chiffres officiels, 18 628 réfugiés ont été enregistrés en Bosnie-Herzégovine en 2018. Au 18 décembre, 5 300 se trouvaient dans le pays, dont au moins 4 000 dans le canton de Bihać, les autres étant répartis dans des centres d’accueil à proximité de la capitale Sarajevo ou de la ville de Mostar. La majorité d’entre eux ne fait que transiter, alors que des températures polaires et de fortes neiges se sont abattues sur la Bosnie-Herzégovine depuis la fin du mois de décembre.

      À Velika Kladuša, une petite ville coincée à la frontière occidentale du pays, le camp de Trnovi a été évacué mi-décembre et tous ses habitants relogés dans l’ancienne usine Miral, aménagée en centre d’hébergement d’urgence par l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations (OIM). « Les conditions sont très précaires, mais au moins, il y a du chauffage », se réjouit Husein Kličić, président du Comité cantonal de la Croix-Rouge.

      Les entrées en Bosnie-Herzégovine se sont ralenties avec l’arrivée de l’hiver, 450 par semaine en novembre contre 1 200 un mois plus tôt, selon Peter Van der Auweraert, directeur de l’OIM dans le pays, mais les flux ne se sont pas taris : en ce début janvier, de nouveaux groupes arrivent tous les jours au Monténégro, explique Sabina Talovic, volontaire dans la ville de Pljevlja, proche des frontières de la Bosnie-Herzégovine. Ces flux devraient recommencer à enfler une fois le printemps revenu.

      L’urgence est désormais de passer l’hiver. Selon Damir Omerdić, ministre de l’éducation du canton d’Una-Sana, une trentaine d’enfants installés avec leurs familles dans l’ancien hôtel Sreda, dans la ville de Cazin, devraient même pouvoir intégrer l’école primaire d’un petit village voisin et des négociations sont en cours avec un autre établissement. « Ils passeront deux ou trois heures par jour à l’école. Notre but est de leur permettre de faire connaissance avec d’autres enfants », explique-t-il à Radio Slobodna Evropa.

      La police du canton d’Una-Sana a observé, courant décembre, plusieurs groupes de réfugiés en train de s’engager dans le massif de Plješevica, qui fait frontière avec la Croatie. Non seulement, des secteurs n’ont toujours pas été déminés depuis la fin de la guerre, mais seuls des montagnards expérimentés et bien équipés peuvent s’engager en plein hiver dans ces montagnes dont les sommets culminent à plus de 1 600 mètres. Les policiers bosniens n’ont aucun mandat pour stopper les réfugiés qui prennent cette route dangereuse – mais si jamais ils parviennent à franchir ces montagnes, on peut hélas gager que la police croate les arrêtera.

      https://www.mediapart.fr/journal/international/130119/en-bosnie-des-milliers-de-refugies-sont-bloques-dans-la-neige-aux-frontier

    • Entre violences et désespoir, le quotidien des migrants oubliés en Bosnie-Herzégovine

      Ils sont plus de 3 500 dans les #camps surpeuplés à la frontière avec la Croatie, des centaines dans les squats insalubres à Sarajevo, et bien d’autres encore dans le reste du pays. Depuis plus d’un an, la Bosnie-Herzégovine subit afflux massif de migrants, auquel les autorités ont toutes les peines de faire face. Pour ces candidats à l’exil bloqués à la lisière de l’Union européenne, l’espoir de passer se fait de plus en plus ténu. « Entre violences et désespoir, le quotidien des migrants oubliés en Bosnie-Herzégovine », un Grand reportage de Jean-Arnault Dérens et Simon Rico.


      https://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/15228/entre-violences-et-desespoir-le-quotidien-des-migrants-oublies-en-bosn
      #campement

    • In Bosnia, a Migrant Way Station Is Becoming a Winter Prison

      For years, the country remained untouched by the global migrant crisis, but now, even in a place where many people were once refugees, tensions are on the rise.

      BIHAC, Bosnia and Herzegovina—Zohaib Ali, a 22-year-old student from Pakistan, has attempted to cross into the European Union through the mountainous border separating Bosnia and Herzegovina from Croatia 16 times. Many of the migrants he met during his repeated efforts have now made it to Italy or France. “I tried, and they tried. … [I had] bad luck,” he told Foreign Policy in December. But bad luck is not the only element to blame.

      Ali speculated that if he had come to Bosnia earlier in the spring of 2018, when the border with Croatia wasn’t so heavily guarded, he might have succeeded. Instead, he arrived in August, finding himself in one of the world’s most difficult migration bottlenecks.

      For years, the global migrant crisis was a remote concern for Bosnia. Migrants traveling along the Balkan corridor first arrived in Greece by sea from Turkey and then moved toward Macedonia and Serbia in order to enter Croatia and Hungary, both EU member states. As in 2015 and 2016, countries along the route have closed their borders, sending migrants fanning out across the Balkans.

      Now, migrants leaving Greece go through jagged mountains and dense woodland to reach Albania, then Montenegro, only to find themselves stuck in Bosnia. This small, ethnically divided country with a dearth of economic opportunities has found itself at the epicenter of the crisis, as more people make their way in and can no longer find a way out.

      Since January 2018, more than 23,000 migrants and asylum-seekers have arrived in Bosnia. The year before, there were fewer than 1,000.

      The shift has caught the country’s authorities flat-footed. Many international actors, including the Council of Europe’s commissioner for human rights, have expressed concerns over the slow and chaotic response to the needs of these new arrivals.

      Despite his determination to reach his brother in Germany or his sister in Canada, Ali has resolved to spend the winter in northwestern Bosnia before he attempts his next crossing in the spring. Maybe borders won’t be so heavily guarded and Croatian police so brutal, he speculates. He wasn’t beaten or attacked with dogs, as was the case for many less fortunate migrants, who have accused Croatian forces of systematic violence. But he was the victim of theft on multiple occasions. “They took my rucksack with belongings,” he recounted matter-of-factly.

      It’s an uncomfortable compromise. Ali’s efforts to find help to get out of Bosnia have been anything but fruitful. When a smuggler promised to get him a safe passage to Italy, Ali handed over 16,000 euros ($18,000), and in return, he received nothing.

      In Bosnia, he was told that he would need a visa. Then a smuggler took his passport and never gave it back, making his presence in Bihac—without documents or refugee status—completely illegal. “It’s not a problem,” Ali said. “There [are] too many migrants here. No one will notice.”

      Extreme temperatures are a factor, too. “The cold in the mountains is like ice going inside you, in your blood,” Ali said. In these conditions, around 4,000 others have made the same pragmatic decision—Bosnia will have to do, for now.

      For migrants and asylum-seekers stuck in Bosnia through the winter, options are limited. They’re allowed to stay in one of four refugee camps along the border with Croatia. The camps are temporary and were never intended for their current purpose.

      https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/02/20/in-bosnia-a-migrant-way-station-is-becoming-a-winter-prison-bihac-cro

    • Reçu via la mailing-list Inicijativa Dobrodosli, le 29.04.2019

      Since 18 July 2018, the border has been monitored by a Frontex airplane. Croatian border with Bosnia and Herzegovina is regularly patrolled by over 1,000 officers (out of a total of 6,500 border police officers) and there are additional 2,000 riot police officers deployed for border surveillance.

      #militarisation_des_frontières #Frontex #surveillance #surveillance_aérienne #police #Bosnie-Herzégovine #Croatie #frontières #surveillance_frontalière #contrôles_frontaliers

    • Kroatische Polizei bei illegaler Abschiebung gefilmt

      Kroatien schiebt Flüchtlinge an der grünen Grenze illegal nach Bosnien ab. Das verstösst gegen EU- und Völkerrecht.

      Ein verlassener Grenzabschnitt im Norden Bosniens Ende April. Aus dem Wald tauchen kroatische Uniformierte auf. Dahinter eine Gruppe von rund 30 Menschen mit Rucksäcken und Decken bepackt. Am Grenzstein zwischen Kroatien und Bosnien bleiben die Beamten stehen und schicken die Gruppe per Handbewegung nach Bosnien.

      Was aus der Ferne wie eine Grenzwanderung am Balkan aussieht, ist eine illegale Abschiebung von Flüchtlingen an der kroatischen EU-Aussengrenze. «Rundschau»-Reporter dokumentieren an zwei Tagen vier sogenannte Push-Backs. Die vier Aktionen betreffen rund 70 Menschen, hauptsächlich aus Pakistan, Algerien und Afghanistan.

      Knüppelhiebe und zerstörte Handys

      Die «Rundschau» konnte direkt nach den Push-Backs mit den betroffenen Migranten reden. Es ist das erste Mal, dass diese illegalen Ausschaffungen an der EU-Aussengrenze vollständig dokumentiert werden können.

      Die Betroffenen berichteten übereinstimmend, dass sie von der kroatischen Polizei ohne Verfahren an der grünen Grenze nach Bosnien zurückgeschafft worden seien. Bei den Push-Backs sei von kroatischen Beamten auch Gewalt angewendet worden.

      Ein junger Pakistani erzählt: «Sie haben uns im Wald aufgegriffen, alle in einen Van gesteckt und direkt zur Grenze gefahren. Die Fahrt dauerte etwa zwei Stunden. Dann haben sie unsere Handys zerstört und uns mit Knüppelhieben Richtung Bosnien geschickt».

      Das Geld, das einige dabeigehabt hätten, sei ihnen gestohlen worden. Diese und ähnliche Berichte über zum Teil brutales Vorgehen der kroatischen Grenzwächter dokumentieren NGO seit über einem Jahr.
      Asylanfragen ignoriert

      Eine afghanische Familie mit Kleinkindern berichtet, wie sie im Wald von kroatischen Polizisten gestoppt worden sei. «Sie richteten die Pistolen auf uns und sagten ‹Stopp›. Wir hatten grosse Angst und weinten», erzählt das älteste der Kinder. Als die Familie um Asyl gebeten habe, hätten die Beamten gelacht, man werde ihnen «bosnisches Asyl» geben – sie also nach Bosnien zurückschaffen.

      Die «Rundschau» sprach mit mehr als hundert weiteren Migranten und Flüchtlingen. Alle erklärten, dass sie daran gehindert worden seien, in Kroatien Asyl zu beantragen.

      Kein Einzelfall in Europa

      Die «Rundschau» legte die Filmaufnahmen Migrationsexperten und Menschenrechtsorganisationen vor. Der deutsche Migrationsforscher Marcus Engler ist deutlich: «Es ist ein Verstoss gegen EU-Recht und Völkerrecht.» Kroatien sei kein Einzelfall. «Diese Praxis wird an der ganzen EU-Aussengrenze angewendet.»

      András Léderer vom Hungarian Helsinki Committee (HHC), spricht von schweren Menschenrechtsverletzungen. Bei einer möglichen Rückführung von Migranten brauche es immer ein offizielles Verfahren – auch wenn diese illegal über die grüne Grenze eingereist seien. Jeder Mensch muss einzeln angehört, sein Fall einzeln geprüft werden.

      Aber das Video zeige klar: Hier finde eine kollektive Ausschaffung statt, was immer illegal sei. «Man darf Menschen nicht mitten im Wald oder auf einem Feld aus dem Land werfen», so Léderer. Dass die Zurückweisungen an der grünen Grenze inoffiziell stattfänden, also nicht in Gegenwart der bosnischen Behörden, sei eine klare Verletzung des Grenzabkommens.

      https://www.srf.ch/news/international/ausschaffung-ueber-gruene-grenze-kroatische-polizei-bei-illegaler-abschiebung-ge
      #vidéo

      Commentaire sur la vidéo de Inicijativa Dobrodosli, reçu par email, le 22.05.2019 :

      This week, the Swiss media SRF released a report containing recordings of police conduct on the Croatian border with Bosnia and Herzegovina. The aforementioned report brings us new testimonies and evidence of illegal conduct of the Croatian police at the border with BH. Footage concretely demonstrate collective expulsion on the green border and a police van transporting people from the depths of the Croatian territory, which confirms that this is not a “discouragement”, and all without the presence of the Bosnian-Herzegovinian police that would be there in case of lawful readmission process. The testimonies reaffirm that this is a European problem, not just a Croatian one because refugees speak of chain pushbacks from Slovenia (https://push-forward.org/porocilo/report-illegal-practice-collective-expulsion-slovene-croatian-border) through Croatia to BH. Footage also brings shocking testimonies of children (https://www.srf.ch/play/tv/news-clip/video/kinder-erzaehlen-wie-sie-mit-waffengewalt-zurueckgedraengt-worden-sind?id=090062) describing police threats with weapons, as well as testimonies of denial of asylum seeking. The Ministry of Interior, as usual, rejects the responsibility without any counter-evidence or legally justified arguments. We wonder how many more violations of human rights should happen in order for the Croatian authorities to take responsibility and stop the illegal conduct.

    • Prvi intervju u kojem hrvatski policajac tvrdi: šefovi nam naređuju da ilegalno protjerujemo migrante

      Telegram ekskluzivno objavljuje priču Barbare Matejčić, nastalu nakon iscrpnih razgovora s pripadnikom MUP-a

      "Početkom 2017. vratio sam prvu grupu migranata. Naredbe sam dobivao od šefa smjene. Dakle, nazovem šefa, kažem da imamo grupu migranata. Često nam građani dojave kada vide migrante, a nekada bismo ih i sami našli na ulici. Šef smjene mi onda kaže da će me nazvati za 10 minuta. Nazove me na privatni mobitel na kojemu se ne snimaju razgovori, kaže da ih vozimo na granicu. Migranti kažu: ’Azil’, a mi: ’No azil’ i stavimo ih u maricu u kojoj isključimo vezu, koja inače stalno odašilje GPS signal, da se ne bi znalo gdje smo’, detaljno prepričava hrvatski policajac kojem, zbog zaštite, nećemo otkriti identitet

      “I ja i moje kolege policajci provodili smo nezakonita vraćanja migranta iz Zagreba na granicu Hrvatske s Bosnom i Hercegovinom i Srbijom. Doveli bismo ih pred zelenu granicu i rekli im da prijeđu nazad u Bosnu ili Srbiju. Nismo ih evidentirali. Takve smo naredbe dobivali od nadređenih u policijskoj postaji, nisu se policajci toga sami sjetili”, rekao nam je zagrebački policajac u razgovorima koje smo s njim vodili tijekom lipnja 2019. Time je potvrdio ono na što međunarodne i domaće organizacije poput Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Are You Syrious i Centar za mirovne studije upozoravaju već duže od dvije i pol godine: hrvatska policija suprotno hrvatskim i međunarodnim zakonima sustavno i organizirano provodi grupna protjerivanja izbjeglica s teritorija Republike Hrvatske na teritorije Republike Srbije i Bosne i Hercegovine. Pri tome im ne dozvoljava da zatraže azil u Hrvatskoj.

      Unatoč stotinama svjedočanstava samih izbjeglica koje tvrde da ih je hrvatska policija nezakonito protjerala u Bosnu i Srbiju, anonimnoj pritužbi koju je od pripadnika granične policije nedavno primila pučka pravobraniteljica Lora Vidović, snimkama protjerivanja koje su prikupile nevladine organizacije i mediji, tvrdnjama stanovnika Bosne i Hercegovine koji su vidjeli hrvatsku policiju kako protjeruje izbjeglice, hrvatsko Ministarstvo unutarnjih poslova negira sve optužbe. Također, MUP tvrdi da se ne radi o protjerivanju, već o zakonitom odvraćanju na samoj granici. No ovo je prvi put da izvor iz policije osobno novinarki potvrđuje grupna protjerivanja tražitelja azila, i to iz Zagreba, daleko od hrvatske granice. Riječ je o policajcu s dugim stažem u zagrebačkoj policiji, kojem zbog zaštite ne otkrivamo identitet kao ni policijsku postaju kojoj pripada.

      ‘Šef me zove na privatni mobitel, jer se ne snima i kaže mi da ih vozimo’

      “Početkom 2017. vratio sam prvu grupu migranata. Naredbe sam dobivao od šefa smjene, jer o svemu što se dogodi na terenu moraš obavijestiti šefa smjene. Dakle, nazovem šefa smjene, kažem da imamo grupu migranata. Često nam građani dojave kada vide migrante, a nekada bismo ih i sami našli na ulici. Šef smjene mi onda kaže da će me nazvati za 10 minuta. Nazove me na privatni mobitel na kojemu se ne snimaju razgovori, kaže da ih vozimo na granicu. Migranti kažu: ‘Azil’, a mi: ‘No azil’ i stavimo ih u maricu u kojoj isključimo vezu, koja inače stalno odašilje GPS signal, da se ne bi znalo gdje smo.

      Napravimo im pretres, bez naloga naravno, da vidimo odakle su ušli u Hrvatsku, imaju li neki račun iz kafića, karticu za mobitel, ili nam oni sami kažu. Kada utvrdimo iz koje zemlje su došli, tamo ih vodimo. Na putu bi se pri svakom ulasku i izlasku iz područja policijske postaje trebalo prijaviti operativno-komunikacijskom centru. I putuje se s putnim nalogom na kojem sve piše, gdje ideš i zašto. Kod vraćanja migranata to se ništa nije radilo. Njih se vraćalo bez ikakve dokumentirane procedure. Kao da ih nikada nismo našli ni odveli do granice“, prepričava postupak nezakonitih vraćanja naš izvor.

      ‘Na internetu smo sami proučavali zakone i shvatili da to nije legalno’

      U početku nije znao da je takav postupak nezakonit. “Kada je krenuo onaj prvi val izbjeglica 2015., dolazili su organizirano i dobivali smo smjernice kako da postupamo. Kada su kasnije počeli ilegalni prelasci, nitko nam nije rekao koja je procedura. Tek kada smo ih trebali procesuirati, jer nismo sve automatski vraćali na granicu, onda smo na internetu proučavali zakone i gledali što treba raditi. Sami smo se educirali i tako smo shvatili da način na koji smo mi to obavljali nije po zakonu.”

      Takvim postupanjem, za koje naš izvor optužuje hrvatsku policiju, osim što se krši pravo izbjeglicama da zatraže međunarodnu zaštitu, krše se i propisi prema kojima se ne smiju provoditi grupna protjerivanja, već individualni povratci, i to u zakonom predviđenom postupku uz propisanu dokumentaciju te u dogovoru s policijom zemlje u koju ih se vraća. Redom, krši se UN-ova Konvencija o statusu izbjeglica, Europska konvencija o ljudskim pravima, Povelja EU o temeljnim pravima, direktive koje reguliraju sustav međunarodne zaštite i postupke povratka državljana trećih zemalja, Zakonik o schengenskim granicama, hrvatski Zakon o strancima i Zakon o međunarodnoj i privremenoj zaštiti.

      ‘Neki policajci su odbijali to raditi, njih su odmah kažnjavali’

      Naš izvor nije ni jednom obavijestio bosansku ili srpsku policiju, već bi odveo grupu na zelenu granicu i protjerao ih same preko. Također ne postoji nikakav pisani trag o takvom postupanju. Izvor, nadalje, tvrdi kako nisu vraćali sve migrante koje bi našli. “Ako bi u grupi bile žene i djeca, ili ako je puno građana prijavilo da je vidjelo migrante – jer ti pozivi ostaju zabilježeni – ili ako bi ih našli usred dana na cesti kada bi postojala mogućnost da netko fotografira policiju kako odvodi migrante i može kasnije pitati gdje su ti ljudi, onda se išlo po proceduri”, tvrdi. Odvelo bi ih se u policijsku postaju, pokrenulo postupak utvrđivanja identiteta, fotografiralo bi ih se, uzelo otiske prstiju i smjestilo u Porin (prihvatilište za azilante) gdje im se pruža utočište do odluke hoće li im se udovoljiti zahtjevu za azil ili ne.

      Također, izvor kaže da nije svaki šef smjene naređivao nezakonita vraćanja, kao što ni svi policajci nisu to htjeli raditi: “Bilo je policajaca koji su odbili takve naredbe pa su za kaznu završili na čuvanju objekata. Šest mjeseci čuvaš zgradu i dobiješ bitno manju plaću, ukupno oko 3500 do 4000 kuna. Nakon što bi im se to dogodilo, nitko više nije odbio vratiti migrante na granicu.

      Po pravilniku bismo morali odbiti naredbu ako je protuzakonita i obavijestiti o tome neposrednog nadređenog osobe koja je izdala protuzakonitu naredbu. Ali, nemaš se kome obratiti, jer su te naredbe dolazile od nadređenih kojima bi se ti, kao, trebao žaliti. Svi smo znali da su šefovi smjene naredbe dobivali od svojih nadređenih, to je javna tajna. Takva je hijerarhija MUP-a. Imaš načelnika postaje i trojicu pomoćnika načelnika, nije se ni jedan šef smjene sam toga sjetio”, priča.
      Isključivo usmene naredbe, nema pisanih tragova

      Sve naredbe su, kaže, bile usmene i naš izvor nije nikada vidio pisani trag o tome. Također, nikada nije dobio naredbu da primjenjuje silu ili da uništava imovinu izbjeglica, iako su zabilježena brojna svjedočanstva o nasilju policije nad izbjeglicama. “Svakakve priče su kolale o tome, ali osobno nisam ni dobio takvu naredbu ni vidio da je netko od policajaca tukao migrante ili im uništio mobitel.” On je obavio četiri vraćanja, odnosno tri jer je jedno bilo neuspješno – dva u Bosnu i Hercegovinu i jedno u Srbiju.

      Svaki put se radilo o grupama mlađih muškaraca. Jednom ih je bilo devetero otraga u marici, a dvaput četrnaestero. Po zakonu se u marici u stražnjem dijelu može voziti najviše šestero ljudi. Iako tri vraćanja ne zvuči kao da se radi o čestoj praksi, napominje da je to ono što ga je zapalo u njegovoj smjeni, a da treba uračunati sve policajce u svim zagrebačkim postajama te smjene kroz 365 dana u godini, čime bi se došlo do puno veće brojke nezakonitih vraćanja samo s područja Zagreba.
      Zašto je odlučio progovoriti, iako bi mogao završiti u zatvoru?

      Zna da bi, kada bi se saznalo o kome se radi, mogao završiti u istražnom zatvoru. Ovime što je radio počinio je kazneno djelo, a nadređeni u policiji bi, uvjeren je, tvrdili da nije bilo nikakve naredbe. Zbog čega je, usprkos tome, pristao istupiti u medije?

      “Ni jedan policajac nije se sam sjetio da tjera ljude preko granice. Gdje će policajcu iz Zagreba pasti na pamet da skupi u maricu migrante i vozi ih na granicu? Ali nitko od šefova neće preuzeti odgovornost ako se sazna za takvo ponašanje, nego će reći da je policajac to sam napravio. Nije, već mu je naredio šef smjene, pomoćnici načelnika, načelnik policijske postaje, načelnik uprave… Po tom lancu išla je naredba na niže, do policajaca. Ali, nitko to neće reći i nastradat će obični policajci koji su najmanje krivi”, objašnjava svoje motive.

      Pravobraniteljica: ‘Zaštita policajaca koji časno rade svoj posao’

      Komentar smo zatražili od pučke pravobraniteljice Lore Vidović: “Ovi navodi, na žalost, samo potvrđuju ono što mi govorimo i pišemo već godinama, a MUP demantira bez argumenata. Ponovno se nameće pitanje kako u ovakvim okolnostima utvrditi odgovornost onih koji takva postupanja naređuju i provode, između ostaloga i kako bi se zaštitili oni policijski službenici koji časno obavljaju svoj posao. Osim toga, jedan od ključnih argumenata koji MUP neprekidno ističe je i kako su policijski službenici educirani za postupanje s migrantima, a sada vidimo da to ipak nije tako”, kaže pravobraniteljica.

      Vidović napominje i da MUP njenom uredu protivno zakonu brani pristup podacima i informacijskom sustavu MUP-a dok se komunikacija s policijskim službenicima “svodi na kontrolirano i šablonizirano davanje podataka”. Amnesty International je u svom opsežnom izvještaju, objavljenom u ožujku 2019., također utvrdio da su sustavna grupna protjerivanja, ponekad popraćena nasiljem i zastrašivanjem, redovita na granici između Hrvatske i Bosne i Hercegovine.
      Nevladine procjene kažu da je 2018. bilo 10.000 protjerivanja iz RH

      Milena Zajović Milka iz nevladine organizacije Are You Syrious kaže da je prema njihovim procjenama u 2018. bilo čak 10.000 protjerivanja iz Hrvatske. “Nezakonite prakse hrvatske policije nadilaze svaku vjerodostojnu mogućnost poricanja. Razmjeri i dosljednost izvještaja, video snimaka i uznemirujućih svjedočenja ljudi koji su iskusili loše postupanje u rukama hrvatske policije, ukazuju na sustavnu i namjernu politiku hrvatskih vlasti, a ne na dobro organiziranu urotu izbjeglica i migranata kako bi dobili međunarodnu zaštitu, kao što hrvatsko Ministarstvo unutarnjih poslova često sugerira.

      Želeći zaštitom vanjske granice EU pokazati svoju spremnost za pridruživanje schengenskoj zoni 2020., Hrvatska je postala jedan od europskih marljivih čuvara vrata. U svom pristupu migracijama, hrvatske vlasti se opasno približavaju ponašanju mađarske vlade protiv koje je Europska komisija pokrenula postupak zbog povrede propisa EU-a”, komentirala nam je Jelena Sesar, autorica izvještaja Amnesty Internationala. Ona napominje da treba provesti neko vrijeme na bosanskoj strani granice kako bi se svjedočilo grupama ljudi protjeranih duboko s hrvatskog teritorija. To smo i napravili.
      Slovenska policija ih ne tuče, za našu kažu: ‘Croatian police very bad’

      U Velikoj Kladuši i Bihaću krajem lipnja 2019. čuli smo desetine podjednakih svjedočenja izbjeglica: prešli su hrvatsku granicu, policija ih je uhvatila, razbila im mobitele da ne mogu dokazati gdje su uhvaćeni, da ne mogu dokumentirati što su im policajci napravili, a i da im otežaju ponovni prelazak. Većinu ih je, tvrde, hrvatska policija i pretukla. Mnogi su nam pokazivali svježe ozljede, kao i zarasle ožiljke od, kako tvrde, hrvatske policije.

      Umar (18), Rizwan (18) i Ali (19) su iz Pakistana i više puta ih je u Bosnu, tvrde, vratila hrvatska policija. Pričaju kako su ih tukli palicom. Uzeli im novac. Papire koje su dobili u Bosni su im uništili. Stvari, uključujući vreću za spavanje, su im zapalili. Jednom su došli do Slovenije, ali ih je uhvatila slovenska policija i predala hrvatskoj policiji, koja ih je pak protjerala u Bosnu, kažu. Slovenska policija ih nije tukla. “Croatian police very bad”, ponavljaju, a Umar svaki put doda: “I’m sorry, madam”, jer sam iz Hrvatske pa da me ne uvrijedi njihovo loše mišljenje o hrvatskoj policiji.

      Gradonačelnik Bihaća koji je naletio na hrvatske policajce s migrantima

      Jelena Sesar potvrđuje da su dokumentirali brojne slučajeve prisilnog vraćanja iz Slovenije, pa čak i Italije u Bosnu i Hercegovinu: “Takva se vraćanja događaju na, čini se, dobro organiziran način i kroz učinkovitu suradnju talijanske, slovenske i hrvatske policije, iako se ne radi o sustavnoj praksi”. I gradonačelnik Bihaća Šuhret Fazlić nezadovoljan je postupanjem hrvatske policije. Razgovarali smo u blizini Bihaća gdje je tijekom lova u siječnju 2019., kaže, zatekao dvojicu naoružanih hrvatskih policajaca koji su doveli grupu od 30 do 40 migranata.

      “Bili su otprilike 500 metara od granice s Hrvatskom. Predstavio sam se tim policajcima i rekao im da su na bosanskom teritoriju i da je to što rade nezakonito. Policajac je slegnuo ramenima i rekao da su dobili takve naredbe. Znam i ime tog policajca, ali mu ne želim stvarati probleme”, kaže gradonačelnik. Hrvatski ministar unutarnjih poslova Davor Božinović nazvao je čak i te gradonačelnikove tvrdnje “insinuacijama” i “lažnim optužbama”.
      Europska unija Hrvatskoj cijelo vrijeme šalje različite signale

      Ministar Božinović očigledno se osjeća dovoljno jakim i sigurnim da može opovrgavati sve dokaze o nezakonitostima policije kojom zapovijeda. Znači li to da ima potporu u EU u obrani njezine vanjske granice bez obzira na primijenjena sredstva? “Tvrdnje o zloporabama hrvatske policije daleko se ozbiljnije shvaćaju izvan Hrvatske. Povjerenica Vijeća Europe za ljudska prava, posebni izaslanik Vijeća Europe za migracije, Europski parlament i Europska komisija zatražili su od hrvatskih vlasti da istraže te tvrdnje i ustrajali na tome da Hrvatska mora nadzirati svoje granice u punoj suglasnosti s europskim zakonima.

      Europska komisija je također zatražila od hrvatskih vlasti da ojačaju trenutačno prilično neučinkovit nadzorni mehanizam nad svojim praksama na granici, što bi uključivalo neovisni nadzor nevladinih organizacija. No, istina je da su dužnosnici EU Hrvatskoj slali različite signale. Istovremeno su kritizirali dokumentirane nezakonitosti policije i hvalili vlasti za zaštitu vanjskih granica EU.

      Također, Europska komisija je u proteklih nekoliko godina Hrvatskoj dodijelila više od 100 milijuna eura, od čega je značajan dio namijenjen nadzoru i upravljanju granicom, uključujući financiranje plaća policijskih službenika, unatoč vjerodostojnim dokazima represivnih mjera koje koriste iste te snage. Osiguravajući sredstva te propuštajući da se hrvatske vlasti javno i odlučno prozovu zbog postupanja prema izbjeglicama i migrantima, EU je de facto odobrila takvo ponašanje”, kaže Jelena Sesar. Tražili smo od MUP-a očitovanje o našim saznanjima, no nismo dobili odgovor.

      https://www.telegram.hr/price/prvi-intervju-u-kojem-hrvatski-policajac-tvrdi-sefovi-nam-nareduju-da-ilega

      –------------------

      Reçu via la newsletter Inicijativa Dobrodosli, le 29.07.2019, avec ce commentaire:

      The new testimony of the policeman within which he describes the practice of pushbacks confirms countless testimonies of refugees who claimed that pushbacks are implemented even from the depths of the territory of the Republic of Croatia. In this text, written by Barbara Matejčić, you can read about methods and internal procedures that the policeman describes, and given the fact that he is already the second policeman who spoke about illegal, inhuman and immoral procedures that they have been seeking to do. It will be interesting to see what will be the next step taken by Minister Božinović, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Government of the Republic of Croatia. Until the writing of this report, five days after the publication, we did not receive any response from the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

      Et en plus:

      You can read about anonymous testimonies and the work of the State Attorney of the Republic of Croatia and the Parliamentary Committee on Internal Affairs as well as other events that followed the theme of pushbacks and violence at the border in a new interview with the Croatian Ombudswoman, Lora Vidović (https://www.jutarnji.hr/vijesti/hrvatska/pucka-pravobraniteljica-u-velikom-intervjuu-za-jutarnji-stat-cu-iza-svakog-policajca-koji-odluci-progovoriti-o-nasilju-nad-migrantima/9157892). You can also take a look at the TV report on police violence and refugee testimonies at the SRF (https://www.srf.ch/news/international/migration-auf-der-balkanroute-asyl-tuersteher-fuer-die-schweiz).

      Minister Božinović in his reaction that came a week later after the anonymous complaint of the policeman got published failed to address the content of the complaint. Additionally, following concerns show that state institutions did not approach seriously to these problems and that are no sufficient efforts to stop these practices and properly sanction them: the information that the Parliamentary Committee on Internal Affairs and National Security revealed the details of the above mentioned anonymous complaint to the Ministry of Internal Affairs as well as the fact of the insufficient capacity of the State Attorney of the Republic of Croatia to conduct an investigation within the Ministry of Internal Affairs without using the capacities of MoI.

      This week we could read numerous comments about the latest statement of the President in which she tried to explain what she meant when she addressed pushbacks and her admitting that they are carried out at the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina. While trying to justify illegal pushbacks, the President, strengthened the narrative of refugees as threats and instructed journalists to work in official propaganda service. In connection to this, we are sharing comments of Ladislav Tomčić (www.novilist.hr/Komentari/Kolumne/Ladovina-Ladislava-Tomicica/LADISLAV-TOMICIC-Spomenar-Kolinde-Grabar-Kitarovic), Boris Pavelić (novilist.hr/Komentari/Kolumne/Pronadena-zemlja-Borisa-Pavelica/Kuscevic-Maric-Zalac-A-Bozinovic-Trebao-je-prvi-otici), Slavica Lukić (https://www.jutarnji.hr/komentari/opasne-poruke-predsjednice-grabar-kitarovic/9138125), and Gordan Duhaček (https://www.index.hr/vijesti/clanak/eu-koristi-hrvatsku-za-obavljanje-prljavog-posla-s-migrantima/2103291.aspx).

    • Asyl-Türsteher für die Schweiz

      Mit umstrittenen Methoden weist Kroatien Asylsuchende ab. Die Schweiz profitiert. Welche Verantwortung hat die Politik?

      Der junge Afghane taucht mit einer Gruppe anderer junger Männer aus dem Niemandsland zwischen Kroatien und Bosnien auf. Den Migranten war es gelungen, bei Velika Kladuša über die grüne Grenze in die EU zu kommen. Nach sechs Tagen Fussmarsch wurden sie kurz vor dem Übergang nach Slowenien entdeckt: «Männer mit Masken übers ganze Gesicht haben uns weggeschleppt. An der Grenze haben sie mich geschlagen.» Offenbar haben ihn kroatische Polizisten zusammen mit seinen Kollegen ohne Verfahren über die EU-Aussengrenze ausgeschafft. Nach internationalem Recht wäre dies ein illegaler «push back».
      Fragen an den Bundesrat

      Derweil sinken in der Schweiz die Asylzahlen. Der Bund prüft gar den Verzicht auf einzelne Asylzentren. Auch im Wahlherbst dürften die Themen Asyl und Migration kaum eine Rolle spielen. Die Türsteher an der EU-Aussengrenzen erledigen ihren Job effektiv – auch im Interessen der Schweiz. So stellt sich die Frage: Welche Verantwortung trägt die Schweizer Politik für den Umgang mit Migranten und Flüchtlingen vor den Toren der europäischen Wohlstandszone?

      SP-Nationalrätin Samira Marti hat Fragen: «Ich will vom Bundesrat wissen, ob Flüchtlinge in Kroatien Zugang zum Rechtssystem und zum Asylverfahren haben. Es handelt sich schliesslich nicht einfach um eine Staatsgrenze, sondern um eine europäische Aussengrenze.» Der Bundesrat wird die Interpellation voraussichtlich im Herbst beantworten. Bis dann hält sich die Verwaltung mit öffentlichen Auftritten zum Thema zurück.

      «Push backs» auf Befehl

      Trotzdem gibt es indirekt eine Antwort: In einem Brief an ein Basler Bürgerforum von Ende Juni 2019 hält die zuständige EJPD-Chefin Karin Keller-Sutter fest: «Die Schweiz setzt sich (…) mit Nachdruck dafür ein, dass ein effektiver Grenzschutz nicht zu Lasten der internationalen und europäischen Menschenrechtsnormen gehen darf.» Schengen-Kandidat Kroatien betone, dass er sich an die geltenden Normen und Gesetze halte.

      Unterdessen sind in Kroatien mögliche Beweise aufgetaucht, dass illegale «push backs» durchaus System haben könnten: Ein Mann, der angeblich für die Polizei arbeitet, schreibt an die Ombudsfrau für Menschenrechte, dass es klare Befehle gebe, «die Flüchtlinge gewaltsam nach Bosnien zurückzuschicken». Die kroatische Polizeigewerkschaft HSP bestreitet die Echtheit des Briefs. Ihr Präsident Dubravko Jagić sagt zu SRF: «Wie soll die Polizei das Gesetz umsetzen, wenn sie nicht selbst dem Gesetz folgt.»

      8500 Asylsuchende allein in Bosnien

      In den nächsten Tagen erscheint allerdings auf dem Newsportal Telegram eine Recherche der renommierten Journalistin Barbara Matejčić. Sie hat einen kroatischen Polizisten interviewt, der bestätigt, dass die illegalen «push backs» von Migranten über die Befehlskette befohlen werden: «Wir führten sie ins Grenzgebiet. Dort wurden sie angewiesen, nach Bosnien oder Serbien zurückzukehren. Ohne Registrierung oder Asylantrag. Dies waren die Befehle unserer Vorgesetzten.»

      Während in Kroatien der Widerstand gegen das Vorgehen der Polizei wächst, warten in Bosnien nach Schätzungen des UNHCR rund 8500 Asylsuchende darauf, ihr Glück in der europäischen Wohlstandszone zu suchen. Dazu gehört auch die Schweiz. Das Staatsekretariat für Migration (SEM) bemüht sich, die Not vor Ort zu lindern und ist dabei, zusammen mit einer lokalen Organisation die Trinkwasseraufbereitung sicherzustellen. Auch wenn die Schweiz offiziell ihr Handeln auf die EU abstimmt: Als unabhängiger Kleinstaat kann sie ihre Chance nutzen, selbständig zu agieren.

      https://www.srf.ch/news/international/migration-auf-der-balkanroute-asyl-tuersteher-fuer-die-schweiz

      L’adresse URL de la vidéo:
      https://www.srf.ch/play/tv/rundschau/video/pruegel-an-der-eu-grenze-wie-kroatien-migranten-abschiebt?id=972c5996-ec49-4079-

    • Reçu via la newsletter Inicijativa Dobrodosli, le 12.08.2019:

      The accusations against the Croatian police and their execution of violent pushbacks continue. The Mayor of Bihac reiterated that Croatian police conducts violent pushbacks and is illegally entering the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina (https://m.vecernji.hr/vijesti/eurozastupnik-podupire-bih-sram-me-je-hrvatska-granicna-policija-se-ne-sm). The Greens - European Free Alliance MEP Eric Marquardt, condemned the execution of illegal pushbacks by Croatian police (https://m.vecernji.hr/vijesti/eurozastupnik-podupire-bih-sram-me-je-hrvatska-granicna-policija-se-ne-sm), saying that “the European Border Police act as a criminal gang robbing and beating people and illegally returning them to BiH from Croatia.” Another accusation (https://www.oslobodjenje.ba/vijesti/bih/potvrdeno-za-oslobodenje-povrijedeno-18-migranata-gpbih-ih-skupljala-uz in the series of testimonies arrived on Wednesday when Migrant Coordinator for the Municipality of Velika Kladuša Jasmin Čehić confirmed that a total of 18 injured refugees were brought to the Velika Kladuša Health Center. Border police found refugees beaten up at various locations along the border, and refugees later said in their statements that they had entered Croatian territory when they were intercepted by Croatian police, beaten up, the police seized their money, put them in a van and transferred to the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina. In their statement (http://hr.n1info.com/Vijesti/a425120/MUP-kaze-da-nisu-tukli-migrante-samo-su-ih-odvratili-od-prelaska-granice.), the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Croatia again rejected the conduct of violent pushbacks, stating that Croatian police intercepted the refugees as they crossed the border and that they were deterred from doing so without force. However, the content of a statement from the Interior Ministry was challenged by a local man from #Kladuša (http://hr.n1info.com/Vijesti/a425170/Mjestanin-Velike-Kladuse-kaze-da-je-vidio-2-kombija-iz-kojih-su-izasli-mi), who told reporters that he witnessed the arrival of two Croatian police vans and the expulsion of refugees into the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina. It is beyond dispute that the Ministry of the Interior systematically ignores the numerous testimonies of refugees about violence at the borders. Numerous foreign media such as the Guardian (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/jul/16/croatian-police-use-violence-to-push-back-migrants-says-president and the BBC (https://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-europe-49132735/beaten-and-robbed-how-croatia-is-policing-its-borders published the stories about illegal pushbacks. This week the German weekly magazine Der Spiegel (https://www.index.hr/vijesti/clanak/potresna-reportaza-iz-bih-hrvatski-policajci-su-se-smijali-dok-su-nas-tukli/2107078.aspx), published testimonies from refugees stating that Croatian police officers laughed while kicking them on the body and face, confiscating their cell phones and money and burning their personal belongings.

    • This week Croatia received from the European Commission the green light to enter the Schengen area (https://www.vecernji.hr/vijesti/europska-komisija-upravo-donijela-odluku-hrvatska-je-ispunila-uvjete-za-sch. The confirmation of the fulfillment of the requirements comes some months after the end of the European independent experts’ inspection who assessed that Croatia meets Schengen standards. Both the above-mentioned inspection and the Commission paid particular attention to the sphere of management and protection of the external borders, and especially to the control of the one with Bosnia and Herzegovina. The European Commission’s report states how Croatia needs to invest in the procurement of new technical equipment and training of special dogs that would support the border protection. The day after the European Commission’s positive decision, Dimitris Avramopoulos, the European Commissioner for Migration, Internal Affairs, and Citizenship, visited Zagreb and emphasized how “Croatia has to maintain a high level of control of its external borders and especially with Bosnia and Herzegovina” (https://www.slobodnaevropa.org/a/30232391.html.

      While EU officials, together with Croatian Government representatives, celebrate the European Commission’s approval for the admission to the Schengen area, civil society organisations at national and international level warn that Croatia cannot become a member of the Schengen area as long as it violates both human rights and the Schengen acquis (https://www.ecre.org/editorial-croatias-schengen-accession-reinforcing-legal-red-lines-not-borders). The European Council on Refugees and Exiles (ECRE) warned that the continuous practice of push-backs conducted by Croatian police officers at the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina represents a violation of Article 4 of the Schengen Borders Code. Welcome Initiative, together with the Border Violence Monitoring Network, the Centre for Peace Studies, Are you Syrious?, Rigardu, Mobile Info Team, Re:ports Sarajevo, the Asylum Protection Centre, and Refugee Aid Serbia, published a statement regarding the approval of the European Commission for Croatian entrance to the Schengen area. The statement highlights that “Croatia’s membership to the Schengen area should have been put on hold until the Government of the Croatian Republic does not stop the violent #push-backs” (https://www.cms.hr/hr/azil-i-integracijske-politike/hrvatska-ne-smije-uci-u-schengen-dok-krsi-ljudska-prava). In an interview for Faktograf (https://faktograf.hr/2019/10/23/zeleno-svjetlo-za-ulazak-hrvatske-u-schengen-ima-svoju-mracnu-stranu, the representative of the Centre for Peace Studies claimed that it is impossible that EU institutions do not know what is happening at the borders with Bosnia and Herzegovina, especially when not only many national and international organisations but also institutions such as the UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants (https://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=25088&LangID=E) and the Commissioner of Human Rights of the Council of Europe (https://rm.coe.int/09000016808d7db3) warned about violent push-backs. Paradoxically, the European Commission confirms in its report that the violence against refugees at the borders is acknowledged, and at the same time, it makes certain decisions that tacitly support these practices. If the European Union really wanted to dissociate itself from the policies which rely on beating the people who are in a search of safety, then it would have already taken some steps to urge the Croatian Government to take the necessary measures and to prevent daily violence.

      Reçu via la newsletter Inicijativa Dobrodosli, le 29.10.2019.

      Mise en évidence de ce passage :

      The European Commission’s report states how Croatia needs to invest in the procurement of new technical equipment and training of special dogs that would support the border protection.

      –-> #chiens #militarisation_des_frontières #technologie #protection_des_frontières #frontières_extérieures #refoulements

      #Schengen #adhésion #espace_Schengen #violence

      –-------------

      voir aussi en français :

      Adhésion à Schengen : la Croatie en bonne voie pour intégrer l’espace Schengen

      La Commission rend compte aujourd’hui des progrès accomplis par la Croatie en vue de satisfaire aux conditions nécessaires pour intégrer l’espace Schengen. La Commission européenne considère que, sur la base des résultats du processus d’évaluation Schengen lancé en 2016, la Croatie a pris les mesures requises pour que les conditions nécessaires à l’application intégrale des règles et normes Schengen soient remplies. La Croatie devra continuer à mettre en œuvre toutes les actions en cours, notamment en ce qui concerne la gestion des frontières extérieures, pour faire en sorte que les conditions précitées continuent d’être remplies. La Commission confirme également que la Croatie continue de remplir les engagements liés aux règles Schengen qu’elle a pris dans le cadre des négociations d’adhésion.

      https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/fr/IP_19_6140

  • Most Maps of the New Ebola Outbreak Are Wrong - The Atlantic
    https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2018/05/most-maps-of-the-new-ebola-outbreak-are-wrong/560777

    Almost all the maps of the outbreak zone that have thus far been released contain mistakes of this kind. Different health organizations all seem to use their own maps, most of which contain significant discrepancies. Things are roughly in the right place, but their exact positions can be off by miles, as can the boundaries between different regions.

    Sinai, a cartographer at UCLA, has been working with the Ministry of Health to improve the accuracy of the Congo’s maps, and flew over on Saturday at their request. For each health zone within the outbreak region, Sinai compiled a list of the constituent villages, plotted them using the most up-to-date sources of geographical data, and drew boundaries that include these places and no others. The maps at the top of this piece show the before (left) and after (right) images.

    #cartographie #santé #RDC #erreur #ebola

  • #Niger : En quête d’#alternatives pour les #passeurs

    Le Niger mène une campagne de répression contre les passeurs. Toutetois, les personnes arrêtées - lorsqu’elles transportent des migrants et des réfugiés à travers le Sahara - ont besoin d’alternatives économiques concrètes pour survivre.

    http://www.unhcr.org/fr/news/stories/2017/8/598c4178a/niger-quete-dalternatives-passeurs.html

    Toute cette quantité de mots pour expliquer quelles sont les alternatives pour lutter contre les passeurs... pourtant, il y aurait une solution facile : ouvrir les #frontières, arrêter le processus d’#externalisation des #contrôles_frontaliers...
    Mais le HCR ne semble pas capable d’assumer cela !

    cc @isskein

    • “Non sono un criminale”: storia di un ex passeur del Niger

      Il Niger - territorio principe della rotta sahariana - è uno dei paesi africani in cui più si avvertono i contraccolpi delle decisioni prese in Europa, e si giocano grandi partite su finanziamenti e aiuti. Qui le cose non sono mai bianche o nere, soprattutto se si guarda abbastanza da vicino, come ha fatto per noi Giacomo Zandonini. Qui ha incontrato l’ex passeur #Bazou_Ider, la cui vita attraversa la storia contemporanea del Niger.


      http://openmigration.org/analisi/non-sono-un-criminale-storia-di-un-ex-passeur-del-niger

      #Niger #passeurs #migrations #asile #réfugiés #témoignage

      And in English: http://openmigration.org/en/analyses/im-not-a-criminal-the-story-of-a-former-passeur-in-niger

    • The #Tebu: the little-known community at the heart of Libya’s people smuggling trade

      If you’re a migrant who has made your way into Libya, chances are you’ve met a Tebu. Nearly all the smugglers plying the busiest migration route from Agadez in Niger to the outskirts of the Libyan people smuggling hub of Sebha belong to this indigenous Saharan ethnic group, which since 2011 has become one of Libya’s most marginalised minorities.

      Although increasingly ashamed of the role their young men now play in illegal immigration and desperate to improve their situation, community leaders insist people smuggling will not stop unless there is significant local and regional development to help improve the dire economic situation in southern Libya and offer other opportunities.

      “Given that the bulk of illegal immigrants are being brought in by Tebu people smugglers, if Italy and the EU really want to reduce the flow, they must tackle the roots of the problem and work closely with municipalities in the south, where the influx of migrants arrive at the border,” said Libyan journalist Jamal Adel, who is Tebu.

      “Municipalities in the south can make real changes on the ground if they are sufficiently assisted, including supporting border guards with logistics and training and improving opportunities for young people,” Adel said. “With the deteriorating economic situation, for too many young unemployed Tebu, human trafficking has become the only way to make a living.”

      A senior Tebu figure in the southern Libyan town of Murzuq – on the main route from the Niger border crossing at Tummo to Sebha – Mohamed Ibrahim, described most smugglers as intelligent and resourceful people, including many undergraduates forced to abandon their studies.

      “No one wants to be a people smuggler, so a real and straightforward solution to illegal migration through Libya would be to provide funds for local development and offer alternative and sustainable opportunities to the smugglers themselves,” he said.

      “The international community needs to actually talk to these guys. If they want to study, help them access universities; if they want scholarships to study abroad, facilitate that; if they want to start a local business, offer funds and support, first making them sign contracts to renounce smuggling.”

      Ibrahim said this was something that could be done remotely through civil society organisations, if security concerns prevented the EU and the UN from working in Libya’s south. He estimated the costs of providing all Tebu people smugglers with their desired alternatives would be a fraction of the millions the EU and UN continue to plough into deportations, evacuations, and funding governments in Niger or Libya, which, he said, were largely powerless to control the vast Sahara desert.

      “If there were sustainable options and opportunities on the ground for these guys, I’m confident this smuggling door could be permanently closed,” he said. However, similar schemes in Niger’s smuggling hub of Agadez have had only limited success.

      Nori and Ahmed, two Tebu smugglers working the Niger-Sebhu route, both told IRIN they dream of travelling abroad and studying in a safe and peaceful environment – an aspiration ironically shared by many of those they are illegally transporting into Libya – and would welcome opportunities and support to pursue new careers.

      “Talking to the Tebu is the real key to stopping illegal immigration into Libya,” said Ibrahim, noting that any dialogue should include all aspects of society, not only smugglers.

      Basic security at the Tummo border crossing point and checkpoints along the road to Sebha – all easily avoided by smugglers – is provided by volunteer Tebu militias from some of Libya’s remotest desert towns. They say they haven’t received support from any of Libya’s competing governments for years.

      With no funding, few weapons, little fuel, and only a handful of battered vehicles, older and less powerful than those used by the smugglers, the volunteers are unable to attempt anti-immigration operations or undertake desert patrols. And, with no functioning detention centres anywhere in southern Libya, if they do stop smugglers, they can only order them back to Niger, from where the Toyotas can merely re-enter Libya via a different route.

      “Since the revolution, not one person from any government has been here, even though we are trying to protect our people and our land,” Tebu checkpoint commander Agi Lundi told IRIN during a visit to the south in 2015. “1,900 kilometres of desert border is manned by volunteers who don’t have vehicles, weapons, or even petrol.”

      He showed folders of immaculately kept records of desert deportations run between 2011 and 2013, explaining how these ceased after his militia stopped being reimbursed by the Libyan government for vehicle rental and petrol costs.

      At the Tummo border crossing in 2015, Commander Salah Galmah Saleh admitted that, with no government support, his forces were so powerless, smugglers could easily cross into Libya. He said they were waiting for the then nascent UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA) to take full control. Three years later, the GNA still has little control beyond the capital.

      Several local sources confirmed to IRIN that the situation remains the same now as it was in 2015: border guards still go unpaid, and their sole support is basic supplies provided by the local council and “gifts” of fuel from goods’ smugglers.


      https://www.irinnews.org/news-feature/2018/09/06/tebu-community-libya-people-smuggling-trade
      #cartographie #visualisation

    • Revue XXI et Cultures Mondes | A propos de “#Pirates_au_Sahara” de Jérôme Tubiana

      Jérôme Tubiana était l’invité de l’émission Culture Monde de Florian Delorme sur France Culture, vendredi 10 novembre 2017, pour parler de son reportage “Pirates au Sahara” publié dans le dernier numéro de la Revue XXI (n°40, / automne 2017). De retour du Niger, le journaliste et anthropologue raconte son enquête sur les réseaux de passeurs, l’évolution des rapports de force entre un Niger tentant à grand peine de retenir les migrants pour satisfaire aux pressions de l’Union européenne, le chaos libyen où armée et tribus se disputent voire se partagent le pouvoir, et le jeu trouble voire dangereux des Etats européens, dont la Suisse.


      https://asile.ch/2017/11/10/revue-xxi-cultures-mondes-a-propos-de-pirates-sahara-de-jerome-tubiana

    • #border_angels

      Border Angels is an all volunteer, non profit organisation that advocates for human rights, humane immigration reform, and social justice with a special focus on issues related to issues related to the US-Mexican border. Border Angels engages in community education and awareness programs that include guided trips to the desert to place water along migrant crossing routes as well as to the border to learn about the history of US-Mexico border policy and experience the border fence firsthand.

      Border Angels also works to serve San Diego County’s immigrant population through various migrant outreach programs such as Day Laborer outreach and our free legal assistance program held in our office every Tuesday. Border Angels works to dispel the various myths surrounding immigration in the United States and to bring back truth and justice.

      http://www.borderangels.org
      #solidarité #anges

    • Water in the desert. Inside the effort to prevent migrant deaths at the US-Mexico border

      “I had no idea how many people had died. I had no idea the extent of the humanitarian crisis.”

      In the lead-up to the US midterm elections, President Donald Trump has stoked fears about undocumented immigration. After repeatedly saying that immigrants from Latin America are criminals and peddling baseless claims that unidentified people from the Middle East are part of a “caravan of migrants” making its way north from Honduras, Trump ordered the deployment of more than 5,000 soldiers to the southern US border.

      Decades of acrimonious public debate over undocumented immigration in the United States has focused on security, crime, and economics while largely overlooking the people at the centre of the issue and the consequences of US attempts to prevent them from entering the country.

      One of the starkest facts about this humanitarian emergency is that at least 6,700 bodies have been found since 2000 – likely only a fraction of the actual number of people who have died trying to cross the southern US border over this period. More than a third of these bodies have been found in the Sonoran Desert in southern Arizona, where migration routes have been pushed into increasingly harsh and remote terrain.

      Seldom reported and virtually unheard of outside the border region, these bodies have become a cause for a small constellation of humanitarian groups in southern Arizona, spawning an unlikely effort to prevent deaths by placing drinking water along migration trails in the desert.

      “I found it shocking,” Brian Best, a volunteer who moved to Arizona a couple years ago, says of the situation in the desert. “I had no idea how many people had died. I had no idea the extent of the humanitarian crisis.”

      Trying to save lives in this way is not uncontroversial. Undocumented immigration is one of the most polarising issues in US politics and aid groups operate in the same areas that cartels use to smuggle drugs into the country. Inevitably, humanitarian efforts are caught up in the politics and paranoia surrounding these two issues.

      The intensity of the situation has led to a strained relationship between the humanitarians and the Border Patrol, the federal agency tasked with preventing undocumented immigration. Nearly two decades after aid efforts began, the numbers crossing the border have reached a historic low but the proportion of people dying is rising.

      Early on a Friday morning, Stephen Saltonstall, 74, sits behind the steering wheel of a flatbed pickup as it shakes and rattles towards the US-Mexico border. The back of the truck is loaded with equipment: a 300-gallon plastic tank of drinking water, a gas operated pump to pull the water out, and a long, lead-free hose to deliver it into barrels at the water stations Humane Borders, the NGO Saltonstall volunteers with, maintains across southern Arizona.

      It’s mid-September and the temperature is already climbing. By midday it will reach well over 100 degrees (38 celsius), and there are no clouds to interrupt the sun as it bakes the hardscrabble landscape of the Sonoran Desert, surprisingly green from the recently departed monsoon rains. Scraggly mesquite trees and saguaro cactuses with comically tubular arms whir past as Saltonstall guides the truck along Route 286 southwest of Tucson. A veteran of the civil rights movement with a lifelong commitment to social justice – like many others involved in the humanitarian aid effort here – he has made this drive more than 150 times in the three years since moving to Arizona from the northeastern United States.

      Around mile marker 38 – signifying 38 miles north of the border – 13 miles north of an inland US Border Patrol checkpoint, Saltonstall eases the truck off to the side of the road. Stepping out, he walks to the top of a small hill about 10 feet from where the asphalt ends. Stopping next to a small wooden cross planted in the cracked earth, he puts his hands together and offers a silent prayer.

      “I’m sorry that you died an awful death here,” Saltonstall says when he’s finished praying. “Wherever you are now, I hope you are in a better place.”

      The cross is painted red and draped with a strand of rosary beads. It marks the spot – on top of this small hill, in plain sight of the road – where the body of someone who irregularly crossed the border into the United States was found in July 2017. The person likely succumbed to thirst or hyperthermia after spending days trekking through this harsh, remote environment. But no one knows for sure. By the time someone came across the remains, scavenging birds and animals had stripped the body down to a skeleton. There’s no official cause of death and the person’s identity is unknown.

      Nearly 3,000 human remains like this one have been found in southern Arizona since the year 2000. Many more are probably lost in this vast and sparsely populated desert, lying in areas too remote and infrequently trafficked to be discovered before they decompose and end up being carried off in pieces by feasting animals, scattered and rendered invisible.

      Prevention through deterrence

      It wasn’t always like this in southern Arizona.

      The office of Pima County medical examiner Dr. Greg Hess receives all the human remains found near the migration trails in three of the four Arizonan counties that border Mexico.

      “In the 1990s we would average about 15 of these types of remains being recovered every year,” says Hess. Starting in 2002, that average jumped to 160 bodies per year, he adds.

      Most people irregularly crossing the border used to simply sneak over in urban areas where it wasn’t too dangerous. But things started to change in the mid 1990s with the introduction of a federal policy called “prevention through deterrence”. The policy directed Border Patrol to concentrate agents and resources in the urban areas where most people were crossing. The architects of the strategy predicted that “illegal traffic will be deterred, or forced over more hostile terrain, less suited for crossing and more suited for enforcement.”

      The construction of border walls between urban areas in northern Mexico and their neighbouring towns and cities in the United States soon followed. That funnelled the movement of migrants decisively into remote areas like the desert in southern Arizona, but had no discernible impact on the number of people irregularly entering the United States.

      Corlata Wray, 62, watched in the early 2000s as federal policy brought a humanitarian crisis to her back yard. Born in Durango, Mexico, Wray has lived in the small, rural town of Arivaca, Arizona, 12 miles from the border, for the better part of four decades. A slow trickle of people has always moved through Arivaca given its location, but in the late 1990s the number of people trekking across the desert close to Wray’s home dramatically increased.

      In the early years people would knock on the door and Wray would give them water and a little bit of food before they continued on their way. Helping migrants in this way was a normal part of life, according to many people IRIN spoke to living in the border region. But as enforcement efforts ramped up, “everything changed”, says Wray, who now volunteers regularly with organisations providing aid and support to migrants. “I started to see more suffering with the migrants.”

      Now the people who end up on her property are usually in a desperate situation – parched and sunburnt, with bloodied and blistered feet and twisted or broken limbs. “They don’t know which way to go, and that’s when their life is in danger because they’re lost. They have no water. They have no food. And then the desert is not beautiful anymore. Es mortal,” Wray says, switching into Spanish – “It’s deadly”.
      “We have to do something”

      As the “prevention through deterrence” policy came into full effect in the early 2000s, the fact that migrants were dying in the desert at an alarming rate was hard for some people to overlook. Ila Abernathy, a long-time resident of Tucson, 65 miles north of the border, remembers a point in July 2002 when a dozen or more bodies were found in one weekend.

      Fifty-nine at the time, Abernathy had moved to Tucson as a young adult and had been active in the waning years of the sanctuary movement, which sought to provide safe-haven to refugees fleeing civil wars in Central America in the 1980s as the US government restricted their ability to seek asylum. A decade and half later, the network from that movement was still intact.

      Following the news of the deaths in July 2002, a meeting was called at the Southside Presbyterian Church in Tucson. “This is a new crisis. We have to do something,” Abernathy recalls of the meeting’s conclusion. “We need to advocate and we need to get out there and search for people before they die.”

      In the beginning, that meant giving aid to people directly. Between 2002 and 2008, Border Patrol apprehended between 300,000 and 500,000 people every year in the area south of Tucson. “You’d just drive down the road early in the morning and there would be clusters of people either ready to give up or else already in Border Patrol capture,” Abernathy says.

      The group that formed out of the meeting at the Southside Presbyterian Church, the Tucson Samaritans, travelled the roads providing food, water, and medical aid to people in need. Two other groups, Humane Borders and No More Deaths, formed around the same time with similar missions. Their members tended to be active in multiple groups at the same time and were often veterans of the sanctuary or civil rights movements, like Abernathy and Saltonstall. Others were young people who came to the region on educational trips and decided to stay, or longtime residents of southern Arizona who had watched the crisis develop and felt compelled to try to help.

      But their work soon got harder. In 2006, the administration of US president George W. Bush announced a massive expansion of the Border Patrol. With nearly double the number of agents in the field and more resources, it became increasingly rare to find migrants along the roads, or even close to them, according to Abernathy. Unable to deliver aid to people directly, groups started hiking into the remote desert to find the trails migrants were using and leave behind gallon jugs of drinking water in the hope they would be found by people in need. It’s an effort that has continued now for close to 12 years.
      Into the desert

      On a Sunday morning, Best, 59, is picking his way along a migration trail deep in the Sonoran Desert with two other volunteers from the Tucson Samaritans. If you could travel in a straight line, the nearest paved road would be about 10 miles away. But moving in a straight line isn’t an option out here.

      Best and the other volunteers left their four wheel drive SUV behind some time ago after following the winding, rocky roads as far as they could. They are now hiking on foot towards the US-Mexico border. The landscape doesn’t distinguish between the two countries. In every direction, cactuses and mesquite trees carpet low, jagged hills. At the far limits of the vast, open expanse, towering mountains run like rows of crooked shark’s teeth along the horizon.

      This is the “hostile terrain” referred to by the architects of “prevention through deterrence” where migration routes have been pushed. There’s no man-made wall at the border here – just a rusted barbed wire fence. But someone would have to hike about 30 miles to make it north of the inland Border Patrol checkpoint on Route 286 to reach a potential pick-up point, or 60 miles to make it to Tucson. Humanitarian aid volunteers say the trip usually takes from three to 10 days.

      In the summertime the temperature reaches 120 degrees (49 celsius) and in the winter it drops low enough for people to die of hypothermia. There are 17 species of rattlesnakes in this desert, which is also home to the venomous gila monster lizard, tarantulas, scorpions, and other potentially dangerous animals. Natural water sources are few and far between, Border Patrol agents traverse the area in all-terrain vehicles and pickup trucks, on horseback and in helicopters; and there’s surveillance equipment laced throughout the landscape. “I’m really surprised that anybody gets through,” says one humanitarian volunteer, “but they do.”

      On the trail where Best is walking, the ground is uneven and rocks jut out at menacing angles. It’s easy to twist an ankle and impossible to move forward without getting scraped by mesquite branches or poked by cactus spines.

      Best has been visiting this area of the desert for a little over a year. In the beginning, there were a lot of signs that migrants were passing through – black plastic water bottles from Mexico, food wrappers with recent expiration dates, even discarded backpacks and clothing – so the Samaritans started putting jugs of water here hoping it would help fortify people against the dangers of the long journey ahead. But recently the jugs have been sitting untouched. It looks like the route has shifted elsewhere.

      During the second half of the morning Best will explore new territory – literally bushwhacking through the desert – to try to figure out where the route has moved to and where water should be placed. More than a decade after humanitarian aid groups started hiking out into the desert, there are still plenty of places they have yet to set foot in. Figuring out where people are moving and then putting out water is a time-consuming and labour-intensive process of trial and error. “It is very slow and inefficient in some ways, but I think really important,” Best says. “There’s no other way to do it.”

      In the 12 years since they started, over the course of innumerable hikes like this one, the Samaritans have mapped somewhere between 1,500 and 2,000 miles of trails south of Tucson, according to volunteers. Two different groups go out every day, bringing water to hundreds of locations over the course of any given week. In total in the past two years, according to one volunteer, the group has placed 3,295 gallon jugs of water in the desert. No More Deaths, which also relies on volunteers to hike water into the desert, says it has put out 31,558 gallons in past three years, 86 percent of which was used.

      Humane Borders, the organisation that Saltonstall volunteers with, operates using a slightly different model. It maintains fixed water stations at 51 locations on public and private land in southern Arizona that it services by truck. Each station consists of a 55-gallon barrel with a blue flag flying high in the sky to mark its location. Last year the group put 70,000 gallons of water into these stations. Between the three groups, comprised of a couple hundred active volunteers, that’s equivalent to about 10 backyard swimming pools full of water placed along migration trails in the desert, one bottle or barrel at a time.
      Not so straightforward

      The terrain where the humanitarian aid groups put water is some of the most politically charged in the US, at the heart of debates about both undocumented immigration and the movement of illicit drugs into the country. Needless to say, not everybody supports what the groups are doing.

      Cartels have a strong presence in the towns and cities of northern Mexico, and control and profit from the movement of both people and drugs across the border. Critics of the humanitarian groups say they are helping people break the law both by assisting migrants who are irregularly entering the United States and by putting water out that cartel drug runners and scouts can drink just as easily as anyone else.

      Humane Borders receives public funding from the Board of Supervisors in Pima County, but the vote to approve the funding is split: three Democratic members in favour and two Republican members against. Both Republican supervisors declined to comment when IRIN asked about their opposition to the funding – a spokesperson for one said the vote “speaks for itself.”

      The relationship between the humanitarian aid groups and Border Patrol has also been rocky. In particular, No More Deaths has been openly critical of Border Patrol, documenting agents destroying water drops and arguing that the agency’s tactics are contributing to deaths and disappearances in the desert. Border Patrol says it doesn’t condone the destruction of humanitarian aid drops and that it ultimately views its work as humanitarian as well.

      Nine members of No More Deaths have also been arrested on various charges related to their humanitarian work, ranging from trespassing and littering to harbouring illegal aliens, in what volunteers see as an effort to criminalise aid activities in the desert. One of those arrested faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted, and the Intercept has reported that court documents and other evidence suggest some of the arrests were retaliation against No More Deaths for publicising Border Patrol abuses.

      As far as whether water drops are benefitting cartel members or helping people break the law, the questions aren’t really important to many volunteers. “The real basic, humane argument is that nobody should be dying out here,” Best, the Samaritans volunteer, says.

      A more important question is whether the water drops are effective at saving lives. There’s anecdotal evidence from migrants who are caught by Border Patrol and later deported to northern Mexico that it is reaching people in need, but there’s no way to tell how many.

      There’s also the fact that, even as the number of people crossing the desert south of Tucson has decreased, the number of bodies found has remained relatively consistent. Also, not every death in the desert is caused by dehydration. “If somebody has heat stroke it may not be a process of having water available,” explains Hess, the medical examiner. “They may have water with them. It’s just that you’re too hot.”
      “What value can you put on saving even one life?”

      Considering that Border Patrol apprehended an average of over 100 people per day south of Tucson last year, and that an untold number of others crossed without being caught, and that the water isn’t necessarily in all of the places where people are trekking, the volunteers are aware of the limits of what they do. One estimated that over the course of an eight- to 10-hour hike a group of four people could only put enough water out to sustain 15 migrants for one day.

      “What we do is small, and we know it does some good,” Abernathy says. “We don’t want to delude ourselves into thinking this is the solution… [But] what value can you put on saving even one life?”

      Short of a major change to the “prevention through deterrence” policy, many don’t see an alternative to what they are doing. And humanitarian aid efforts have expanded over the years westward from the area south of Tucson to even more remote and sparsely populated parts of the desert where people have to walk 85 to 100 miles through nearly empty wilderness before reaching a point where they can be picked up.

      The old copper mining town of Ajo, Arizona – home to around 3,000 people – is in the heart of one of these far flung, desolate places. One hundred and thirty miles west of Tucson, this outpost of old clapboard and adobe houses is bordered by a national park, wildlife refuge, and US Air Force bombing range that combined constitute a relatively uninhabited and untouched area of desert the size of the state of Connecticut.

      On a warm dry night, volunteers from various humanitarian aid groups are gathered here in the town square, under the light of dim street lamps and a nearly full moon, to pay homage to what binds their community together: the people who have died in the desert.

      Some of the volunteers will wake at 4:45am to try to avoid the heat as best they can and hike out along the trails carrying their gallon jugs of water. But tonight at this vigil they form a line and one by one pick up white wooden crosses, holding them in front of their bodies. Each one represents the remains of a person that were found in the area surrounding Ajo in 2017 and is inscribed with a name or the word desconocido – Spanish for “unknown”. There are about 30 volunteers, and they have to pass through the line more than once. There are more crosses than people to hold them.

      https://www.irinnews.org/news-feature/2018/11/06/migrants-US-Mexico-caravan-elections-Trump-water-desert
      #eau #résistance #désert #frontières #mourir_aux_frontières #hostile_environment

    • Four women found guilty after leaving food and water for migrants in Arizona desert

      A federal judge on Friday reportedly found four women guilty of misdemeanors after they illegally entered a national wildlife refuge along the U.S.-Mexico border to leave water and food for migrants.

      According to The Arizona Republic, the four women were aid volunteers for No More Deaths, an advocacy group dedicated to ending the deaths of migrants crossing desert regions near the southern border.

      One of the volunteers with the group, Natalie Hoffman, was found guilty of three charges against her, including operating a vehicle inside the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge, entering a federally protected wilderness area without a permit and leaving behind gallons on water and bean cans.

      The charges reportedly stemmed from an August 2017 encounter with a U.S. Fish and Wildlife officer at the wildlife refuge.

      The three other co-defendants — Oona Holcomb, Madeline Huse and Zaachila Orozco-McCormick — were reportedly passengers in Hoffman’s truck at the time and were also charged with entering federally protected area without a permit and leaving behind personal property.

      Each of the women face up to six months in prison for the charges and a $500 fine after being found guilty.

      In his three-page order, U.S. Magistrate Judge Bernardo Velasco reportedly wrote that the defendants did not “get an access permit, they did not remain on the designated roads, and they left water, food, and crates in the Refuge."

      “All of this, in addition to violating the law, erodes the national decision to maintain the Refuge in its pristine nature,” he continued.

      He also criticized the No More Deaths group for failing to adequately warn the women of all of the possible consequences they faced for violating the protected area’s regulations, saying in his decision that “no one in charge of No More Deaths ever informed them that their conduct could be prosecuted as a criminal offense nor did any of the Defendants make any independent inquiry into the legality or consequences of their activities.”

      Another volunteer with No More Deaths, Catherine Gaffney, slammed Velasco’s ruling in a statement to The Arizona Republic.

      “This verdict challenges not only No More Deaths volunteers, but people of conscience throughout the country,” Gaffney said.

      “If giving water to someone dying of thirst is illegal, what humanity is left in the law of this country?” she continued.

      According to The Associated Press, the ruling marks the first conviction brought against humanitarian aid volunteers in 10 years.


      https://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/426185-four-women-found-guilty-after-leaving-food-and-water-for
      #délit_de_solidarité #solidarité
      signalé par @fil

    • Arizona: Four women convicted after leaving food and water in desert for migrants

      Federal judge finds activists guilty of entering a national wildlife refuge without a permit to give aid to migrants


      A federal judge has found four women guilty of entering a national wildlife refuge without a permit as they sought to place food and water in the Arizona desert for migrants.

      US magistrate Judge Bernardo Velasco’s ruling on Friday marked the first conviction against humanitarian aid volunteers in a decade.

      The four found guilty of misdemeanours in the recent case were volunteers for No More Deaths, which said in a statement the group had been providing life-saving aid to migrants.

      The volunteers include Natalie Hoffman, Oona Holcomb, Madeline Huse and Zaachila Orozco-McCormick.

      Hoffman was found guilty of operating a vehicle inside Cabeza Prieta national wildlife refuge, entering the federally protected area without a permit, and leaving water jugs and cans of beans there in August 2017.

      The others were found guilty of entering without a permit and leaving behind personal property.

      https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/jan/19/arizona-four-women-convicted-after-leaving-food-and-water-in-desert-for

    • Convicted for leaving water for migrants in the desert: This is Trump’s justice

      A FEW weeks ago, federal prosecutors in Arizona secured a conviction against four humanitarian aid workers who left water in the desert for migrants who might otherwise die of heat exposure and thirst. Separately, they dropped manslaughter charges against a U.S. Border Patrol agent who fired 16 times across the border, killing a teenage Mexican boy. The aid workers face a fine and up to six months in jail. The Border Patrol officer faces no further legal consequences.

      That is a snapshot of twisted frontier justice in the age of Trump. Save a migrant’s life, and you risk becoming a political prisoner. Kill a Mexican teenager, and you walk free.

      The four aid workers, all women, were volunteers in service to an organization, No More Deaths, whose religious views inform its mission to prevent undocumented migrants from dying during their perilous northward trek. They drove into the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge, about 100 miles southwest of Phoenix, to leave water jugs along with some canned beans.

      The women — Natalie Hoffman, Oona Holcomb, Madeline Huse and Zaachila Orozco-McCormick — made no effort to conceal their work. Confronted by a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officer, they said they believed everyone deserved access to basic survival needs. One of them, Ms. Orozco-McCormick, compared the wildlife refuge to a graveyard, such is the ubiquity of human remains there.

      Since the turn of the century, more than 2,100 undocumented migrants have died in that sun-scorched region of southern Arizona, according to Humane Borders, a nonprofit group that keeps track of the numbers. Last year, according to the Pima County Medical Examiner’s Office, the remains of 127 dead migrants were recovered there.

      In the past, prosecutors declined to press charges against the volunteers who try to help by leaving water and canned food in the desert. But the four women, arrested in August 2017, were tried for the misdemeanor offenses of entering a refuge without a permit, abandoning personal property and, in the case of Ms. Hoffman, driving in a restricted area. U.S. Magistrate Judge Bernardo Velasco, who presided over the bench trial, said their actions ran afoul of the “national decision to maintain the Reserve in its pristine nature.”

      In fact, prosecutors have broad discretion in deciding whether to press such minor charges — just as they do in more consequential cases such as the manslaughter charge against Lonnie Swartz, the Border Patrol agent who killed 16-year-old José Antonio Elena Rodríguez in October 2012. According to Mr. Swartz, he opened fire on the boy, shooting 16 times in what the agent said was self-defense, through the fence that divides the city of Nogales along the Arizona-Mexico border. He said the boy had been throwing stones at him across the frontier.

      Mr. Swartz was acquitted on second-degree murder charges last spring, but the jury deadlocked on manslaughter charges. In a second trial, last fall, the jury also failed to reach a verdict on manslaughter. Last month, prosecutors declined to seek a third trial.

      While the aid workers seek to avoid prison time, Americans may well wonder about a system in which justice is rendered so perversely.

      https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/convicted-for-leaving-water-for-migrants-in-the-desert--this-is-trumps-justice/2019/01/27/9d4b3104-2013-11e9-8b59-0a28f2191131_story.html?noredirect=on