• Alexa, Siri, and Google Home record you more often than you think - Vox
    https://www.vox.com/recode/2020/2/21/21032140/alexa-amazon-google-home-siri-apple-microsoft-cortana-recording

    You’re not imagining it. Smart speakers inadvertently listen to you all the time. How often do Alexa and her ilk listen to your conversations ? Maybe more than you think. According to a new report from Northeastern University, smart speakers accidentally activate as many as 19 times a day, recording as much as 43 seconds of audio each time. There’s plenty of anecdotal evidence that voice-activated assistants aren’t perfect and will wake up accidentally and start recording if they think (...)

    #Apple #Google #Microsoft #Amazon #Home #Alexa #Cortana #domotique #Siri #data #écoutes #microtargeting (...)

    ##profiling

  • Amazon : How Bezos built his data machine
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/extra/CLQYZENMBI/amazon-data

    Why Amazon knows so much about you You might call me an Amazon super-user. I’ve been a customer since 1999, and rely on it for everything from grass seed to birthday gifts. There are Echo speakers dotted throughout my home, Ring cameras inside and out, a Fire TV set-top box in the living room and an ageing Kindle e-reader by my bedside. I submitted a data subject access request, asking Amazon to disclose everything it knows about me Scanning through the hundreds of files I received in (...)

    #Ring #Target #Amazon #algorithme #Alexa #domotique #Echo #Fire_TV #Kindle #domination #bénéfices #BigData #data #DataBrokers #profiling #santé (...)

    ##santé ##microtargeting

  • AI can read your emotions. Should it ? | Technology | The Guardian
    https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/aug/17/emotion-ai-artificial-intelligence-mood-realeyes-amazon-facebook-emotie

    Advertisers, tech giants and border forces are using face tracking software to monitor our moods – whether we like it or not It is early July, almost 30C outside, but Mihkel Jäätma is thinking about Christmas. In a co-working space in Soho, the 39-year-old founder and CEO of Realeyes, an “emotion AI” startup which uses eye-tracking and facial expression to analyse mood, scrolls through a list of 20 festive ads from 2018. He settles on The Boy and the Piano, the offering from John Lewis that (...)

    #Mars #Apple #Coca-Cola #NTT #algorithme #Alexa #domotique #iBorderCtrl #biométrie #migration #émotions #facial #reconnaissance #frontières #mouvement #surveillance (...)

    ##vidéo-surveillance
    https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/ac506cc1e79119d0302d1909feecd1cbfa9e2a4e/0_0_2560_1536/master/2560.jpg

  • OK Google, essaie de m’écouter derrière ce bracelet qui brouille tes micros - Cyberguerre
    https://cyberguerre.numerama.com/3056-ok-google-essaie-de-mentendre-derriere-ce-bracelet-brouil

    Des chercheurs de l’Université de Chicago ont développé un prototype de bracelet capable de parasiter les micros. Leur objectif : s’assurer de la confidentialité des conversations les plus privées, dans un monde où les appareils connectés sont autant d’oreilles tendues. L’appareil sort tout droit d’un scénario dystopique de rébellion contre la technologie. Criblé de 24 haut-parleurs, l’imposant bracelet diffuse des ultrasons dans toutes les directions. Son rôle : neutraliser les appareils connectés dotés (...)

    #Apple #Google #Amazon #Assistant #Alexa #domotique #Siri #reconnaissance #écoutes #surveillance (...)

    ##voix
    //c2.lestechnophiles.com/cyberguerre.numerama.com/content/uploads/sites/2/2020/02/BRACELET.jpg

  • Activate This ‘Bracelet of Silence,’ and Alexa Can’t Eavesdrop - The New York Times
    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/14/technology/alexa-jamming-bracelet-privacy-armor.html?emc=rss&partner=rss

    Microphones and cameras lurk everywhere. You may want to slip on some privacy armor. Last year, Ben Zhao decided to buy an Alexa-enabled Echo speaker for his Chicago home. Mr. Zhao just wanted a digital assistant to play music, but his wife, Heather Zheng, was not enthused. “She freaked out,” he said. Ms. Zheng characterized her reaction differently. First she objected to having the device in their house, she said. Then, when Mr. Zhao put the Echo in a work space they shared, she made her (...)

    #Apple #Google #Nest #Ring #Amazon #Alexa #CCTV #domotique #Echo #Siri #sonnette #reconnaissance #vidéo-surveillance #écoutes #surveillance (...)

    ##voix

  • Automating societies : Nine predictions for 2020 – AlgorithmWatch
    https://algorithmwatch.org/en/9-predictions-for-2020

    A few days before 2020, AlgorithmWatch makes nine predictions for the new year. Twelve months from now, we will come back to them and assess our forecasting skills. In May 2020, Hawaii’s Mauna Loa observatory will record the highest carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere since at least 2 million years ago. The observatory is one of the world’s primary benchmark sites for greenhouse gas monitoring. In May, carbon dioxide readings reach their yearly maximum. A new record has been set (...)

    #Apple #Google #Amazon #Facebook #algorithme #Alexa #domotique #biométrie #écologie #manipulation #police #élections #facial #reconnaissance #sexisme #discrimination #pauvreté #santé (...)

    ##pauvreté ##santé ##surveillance

  • Will we just accept our loss of privacy, or has the techlash already begun ? | Alan Rusbridger | Opinion | The Guardian
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/feb/02/will-we-just-accept-our-loss-of-privacy-or-has-the-techlash-already-beg

    Not so long ago we searched Google. Now we seem quite happy to let Google search us ‘As always in the digital world… everything could be disrupted in the blink of an eye.’ Probably too late to ask, but was the past year the moment we lost our technological innocence ? The Alexa in the corner of the kitchen monitoring your every word ? The location-betraying device in your pocket ? The dozen trackers on that web page you just opened ? The thought that a 5G network could, in some hazily (...)

    #Apple #CambridgeAnalytica #Facebook #Amazon #algorithme #Alexa #domotique #Siri #Google #smartphone #5G #biométrie #géolocalisation (...)

    ##[fr]Règlement_Général_sur_la_Protection_des_Données__RGPD_[en]General_Data_Protection_Regulation__GDPR_[nl]General_Data_Protection_Regulation__GDPR_ ##facial ##reconnaissance ##CCPA ##data ##BigData ##écoutes ##GAFAM ##hacking ##surveillance ##FTC ##animaux
    https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/682f1c25c6dbb446ee6b2cbbf7071292b4318962/0_175_5400_3240/master/5400.jpg

  • Cookie consent tools are being used to undermine EU privacy rules, study suggests | TechCrunch
    https://techcrunch.com/2020/01/10/cookie-consent-tools-are-being-used-to-undermine-eu-privacy-rules-study-suggests/?guccounter=1

    Most cookie consent pop-ups served to internet users in the European Union — ostensibly seeking permission to track people’s web activity — are likely to be flouting regional privacy laws, a new study by researchers at MIT, UCL and Aarhus University suggests. “The results of our empirical survey of CMPs [consent management platforms] today illustrates the extent to which illegal practices prevail, with vendors of CMPs turning a blind eye to — or worse, incentivising — clearly illegal (...)

    #Quantcast #algorithme #Alexa #cookies #consentement #législation #[fr]Règlement_Général_sur_la_Protection_des_Données_(RGPD)[en]General_Data_Protection_Regulation_(GDPR)[nl]General_Data_Protection_Regulation_(GDPR) (...)

    ##[fr]Règlement_Général_sur_la_Protection_des_Données__RGPD_[en]General_Data_Protection_Regulation__GDPR_[nl]General_Data_Protection_Regulation__GDPR_ ##CJUE

  • Your Health Data Are a Gold Mine for Advertisers
    https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2019/03/flu-google-kinsa-sick-thermometer-smart/584077

    In the hospital and at home, illness data can be lucrative. Hospitals across the nation are piloting voice-enabled smart speakers in patients’ rooms, including Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles and Boston Children’s Hospital. These institutions are hoping that smart speakers will make patients more comfortable, help staff stay organized, and, in some cases, keep people out of hospitals and emergency rooms altogether. Early results are promising, but health-care providers are still (...)

    #Google #Amazon #domotique #Alexa #BigData #data #santé #enfants

    ##santé

  • Xiaomi, Amazon, Wyze : la sécurité des caméras domestiques en plein débâcle
    https://cyberguerre.numerama.com/2100-xiaomi-amazon-wyze-la-securite-des-cameras-domestiques-mi

    En moins d’un mois, trois modèles de caméra domestique fabriqués par des entreprises plus ou moins connues ont fait l’objet de problèmes de sécurité. Entre fuite de données massives, mots de passe exposés et bug vidéo, la mauvaise publicité s’accumule au fil des affaires pour ce type d’objet connecté. Depuis décembre 2019, les failles de sécurité liées aux caméras connectées font les choux gras des médias généralistes et spécialistes. Il faut dire que les produits concernés appartiennent en premier lieu à des (...)

    #Google #Nest #Xiaomi #Amazon #Alexa #CCTV #WiFi #data #hacking #Wyze #bug

    //c1.lestechnophiles.com/cyberguerre.numerama.com//content/uploads/sites/2/2020/01/priscilla-du-preez-I3zZSqxeiVA-unsplash.jpg

  • Demain, l’humain connecté : que préparent vraiment les GAFAM ?
    https://www.franceculture.fr/numerique/demain-lhumain-connecte-que-preparent-vraiment-les-gafam

    Piloter un ordinateur directement depuis son cerveau ! De premiers tests sur des humains devraient avoir lieu cette année au service d’une société d’Elon Musk. Et Facebook a racheté une jeune entreprise capable de décrypter nos intentions via un bracelet connecté. Jusqu’où ira l’hyperconnexion ? Les échos de la Silicon Valley provoquent parfois des frissons. L’un des derniers exemples en date : le rachat de Control Labs par Facebook le 25 septembre dernier pour un montant compris entre 500 millions et (...)

    #Apple #Google #Microsoft #Nest #Tesla #Amazon #Facebook #Instagram #iTunes #WhatsApp #algorithme #bracelet #Home #Alexa #iPad #iPhone #Portal #transhumanisme #BATX #GAFAM #InternetOfThings (...)

    ##technologisme

  • How we survive the surveillance apocalypse
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2019/12/31/how-we-survive-surveillance-apocalypse

    Online privacy is not dead, but you have to be angry enough to demand it. Go, go gadgets has long been the attitude in my house. Perhaps yours, too : A smartphone made it easier to stay in touch. A smart TV streamed a zillion more shows. A smart speaker let you talk to a smart thermostat without getting out of bed. That’s progress, right ? Now I’ve got a new attitude : It’s not just what I can get out of technology — I want to know what the technology gets out of me. For the past year, I’ve (...)

    #Apple #GoldmanSachs #Google #MasterCard #Amazon #Facebook #algorithme #Chrome #Alexa #carte #cookies #domotique #iPhone #smartphone #thermostat #voiture #WiFi #VPN (...)

    ##[fr]Règlement_Général_sur_la_Protection_des_Données__RGPD_[en]General_Data_Protection_Regulation__GDPR_[nl]General_Data_Protection_Regulation__GDPR_ ##BigData ##CCPA ##data ##écoutes ##profiling ##publicité ##santé

  • Amazon : Alexa ou la tentation totalitaire
    https://korii.slate.fr/et-caetera/amazon-alexa-ou-tentation-totalitaire

    La firme américaine souhaite vous accompagner dans chacun des instants de votre quotidien. À quel prix ? Alexa est déjà présente dans des millions de foyers. En juin, le cabinet Loup Venture estimait qu’Amazon vendrait aux États-Unis 72 millions de ses assistants vocaux en 2019, contrôlant ainsi 58% du marché. Alexa n’est pourtant pas partout. Si la firme de Seattle a su inventer le marché en lançant la première, dès 2014, son assistant personnel, elle s’est depuis fait griller la priorité par Google (...)

    #Google #Ring #Amazon #algorithme #robotique #Alexa #Android #domotique #Echo #Look #Ring_ #sonnette #géolocalisation #reconnaissance #data #profiling #surveillance (...)

    ##données

  • Think Alexa Is Too Creepy For Your Kitchen ? Don’t Give It to Aunty Mary.
    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/25/opinion/location-tracking-gifts.html

    As 2019 comes to a close, millions of new spying devices are headed for American homes. The grass-roots surveillance network in the United States is poised for yet another major expansion this Christmas season. Think of each new Ring video doorbell, discount DNA test, WiFi-equipped clothes dryer, smart speaker and mobile phone as a new node on the world’s most advanced and pervasive effort at human monitoring. All that data is collected by someone, somewhere. It was hard not to cast a (...)

    #Ring #algorithme #Alexa #domotique #smartphone #sonnette #WiFi #génétique #géolocalisation #InternetOfThings (...)

    ##surveillance

  • Qu’ont en tête les assistants personnels intelligents ?
    https://www.lemonde.fr/economie/article/2019/12/28/qu-ont-en-tete-les-assistants-personnels-intelligents_6024276_3234.html

    Google, Amazon et Apple cherchent à « humaniser » ces interfaces vocales de plus en plus performantes. Un samedi soir, lors d’un dîner entre amis. Arrive ce moment où l’on parle de cette actrice : « Tu sais, celle qui joue la mère dans [le film du réalisateur canadien Xavier] Dolan » ; « Dans Mommy ? Un nom qui commence par un B ou un D, non ? » Après deux minutes de tentatives infructueuses, le maître de céans met fin aux débats, couvrant le brouhaha ambiant : « OK Google, qui joue la mère dans Mommy ? » (...)

    #Apple #Google #Amazon #algorithme #Assistant #Alexa #domotique #Echo #Siri #technologisme #reconnaissance #surveillance (...)

    ##voix

  • Est-il encore possible d’arrêter Amazon ?
    https://korii.slate.fr/biz/tech-amazon-jeff-bezos-croissance-omnipresence-pouvoir-danger-democratie

    Deux articles soulignent la puissance exorbitante et universelle qu’ont pris Jeff Bezos et son entreprise, ainsi que le risque qu’elle fait peser sur les démocraties. Est-il possible d’arrêter Amazon ? C’est la question posée par un article publié par The New Yorker, qui permet de découvrir la trajectoire de l’entreprise, l’étendue de ses activités, ses controverses les plus médiatisées ainsi que l’avenir du commerce américain. L’auteur de l’article, Charles Duhigg, explore surtout une idée (...)

    #Amazon #algorithme #Echo #Alexa #Kindle #FirePhone #domotique #Fire_TV #domination #bénéfices (...)

    ##FTC

  • Sudanese refugees in Niger protest, demand relocation

    December 17, 2019 (KHARTOUM) - Sudanese refugees in Niger have staged a sit-in outside the UNHCR office #Agadez town in central Niger to protest their tough conditions and to demand their relocation from the Sahel country.

    For years Agadez on the edge of the Sahara, has been a key stop for refugees and travellers mostly young men in search of better opportunities abroad heading north Africa countries and Europe.

    In a report released in May 2019, the UNHCR estimated that 1,584 persons, mostly Sudanese, are currently registered by UNHCR in Agadez. 23.8% are minors and 126 are unaccompanied or separated children.

    Rights activists from Agadez told Sudan Tribune that all the Sudanese refugees in the refugees camp 15 km outside Agadez decided to leave their camps and to stage a sit-in at the UNHCR office in the area on Monday, December 16, 2019.

    Since Monday, the refugees say resolved to continue their peaceful protest until the UN refugees agency settle their situation.

    Some of the refugees say they can even accept a return to their areas of origin in Darfur but they would not regain the camp.

    Activists pointed out to their poor living conditions and lack of basic health service and education for the children of the refugees who are in the camp since 2017.

    “There is an increase of chronic and serious diseases, there is racism, corruption, and discrimination against Sudanese refugees and other nationalities from other countries and the delay in the legal procedures for asylum,” wrote in an email sent to the Sudan Tribune on Tuesday.

    Many of the Sudanese refugees fled Libya following the increase of attacks on refugees and foreigners by the various militias and armed gunmen who demand ransom for their release.

    https://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article68720
    #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Niger #réinstallation #manifestation #résistance #réfugiés_soudanais

    ping @isskein @pascaline @karine4

    • Niger : des migrants incendient un centre d’hébergement en signe de protestation

      Des demandeurs d’asile de retour de Libye ont incendié leur centre d’hébergement près d’#Agadez, où vivent un millier de personnes dans l’attente de la délivrance d’une carte de réfugiés.

      Amenés de force après un #sit-in de #protestation de plusieurs jours devant les locaux du Haut-Commissariat des Nations unies pour les refugiés (HCR) d’Agadez, des demandeurs d’asile ont mis le feu à leur #centre_d’hébergement, un camp situé à 15 km d’Agadez et où vivent un millier de personnes dans l’attente d’une éventuelle #carte_de_réfugiés.

      « 80% du #centre_d'accueil détruit par une minorité de réfugiés du Darfour à Agadez qui ne veulent entendre parler que de #réinstallation en Europe. Détruire l’espace d’asile au Niger ou ailleurs est plus facile que de le construire et de le protéger. C’est un triste jour pour la protection des réfugiés au Niger », écrit sur son compte Twitter Vincent Cochetel, envoyé spécial du HCR pour la situation en Méditerranée centrale.


      https://twitter.com/cochetel/status/1213519641563320322?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E12
      http://www.rfi.fr/afrique/20200104-niger-migrants-incendie-camp-hebergement-agadez

      Selon plusieurs sources, les demandeurs d’asile exigent, entre autres, un statut de réfugiés avec délivrance immédiate de leur carte, des soins de qualité et une meilleure collaboration avec le HCR et les autres partenaires humanitaires.

      Le gouverneur d’Agadez estime que les migrants ont posé de « faux problèmes ». Le centre dispose d’eau, de nourriture, d’un médecin. Toujours selon le gouverneur, plus de 160 cartes de réfugiés ont récemment été délivrées. « Le processus de détermination est très avancé », indique le #HCR. D’autres cartes seront bientôt distribuées par les autorités nigériennes, apprend-on.

      Après l’#incendie de ce camp, le gouverneur de la région a dénoncé « l’ingratitude des réfugiés ». Une enquête est en cours pour déterminer l’ampleur des dégâts. Les auteurs de cet acte seront poursuivis. Malgré cet incident, précise une source du HCR, plusieurs centaines de réfugiés à la merci de l’harmattan seront relogés. Il a fait cinq degrés à Agadez ce samedi.

      http://www.rfi.fr/afrique/20200104-niger-migrants-incendie-camp-hebergement-agadez
      #feu

    • Commentaire de #Sophia_Bisio sur FB :

      Non, Monsieur Cochetel, un camp qui brûle n’est pas un jour triste plus triste que les autres pour la protection des réfugiés.

      Comme tout système de camp où l’on trie et isole les indésirables, le camp HCR d’Agadez était une prison à ciel ouvert pour le millier de réfugié.e.s soudanais.es qui y vivaient, ou plutôt y survivaient.

      Car ces camps ne sont pas des lieux de vie mais bien des lieux de survie.

      Lorsque j’avais visité ce camp en décembre 2018, plusieurs centaines de personnes y survivaient péniblement, après avoir fui la guerre dans leur pays et le chaos libyen pour la plupart d’entre elles. Installé en plein désert, isolé de tout, à 15 km de la ville, le camp était exposé au vent et aux tempêtes de sable, déclenchant chez de nombreuses personnes des troubles respiratoires. Les conditions sanitaires étaient épouvantables. Des familles entières s’entassaient sous des tentes en plastiques inadaptées au climat désertique, dans lesquelles, l’été, la température pouvait atteindre 70 degrés. Pas d’eau courante. Pas de travail. Pas d’école pour les enfants. Pas de perspectives d’avenir.

      Déjà en 2018, des résidents du camp se joignaient aux manifestations devant les bureaux du HCR dans la ville d’Agadez pour protester contre leurs conditions de vie et la lenteur de la procédure de réinstallation. En décembre 2019, après un an de plus d’attente dans la poussière du désert, ce sont plusieurs centaines de résident.e.s du camp qui se sont rassemblés pour une grande marche jusqu’au centre-ville afin d’organiser à nouveau un sit-in devant les bureaux du HCR, avant d’être une fois de plus renvoyé.e.s à la poussière.

      Hier, le camp brûlait, incendié, selon la version relayée par le HCR, par une minorité énervée de Soudanais du Darfour. Représentant spécial du Haut Commissariat aux réfugiés pour la Méditerranée centrale, Monsieur Cochetel s’indignait alors contre ces personnes qui « détruisent l’espace d’asile », ajoutant : « c’est un triste jour pour la protection des réfugiés au Niger ».

      Non, Monsieur Cochetel, un camp qui brûle n’est pas un jour triste plus triste que les autres pour la protection des réfugiés.

      C’est un signal.

      Le signal que ces hommes et ces femmes qu’on tente d’invisibiliser et de réduire au silence peuvent encore se rendre visibles.

      Le signal que ces politiques migratoires, par lesquelles l’humanitaire tend à devenir le cheval Troie des pires politiques sécuritaires, doivent être dénoncées et combattues avec celles et ceux qui les subissent.

      https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2538844326358556&set=a.1562653620644303&type=3&theater
      #Vincent_Cochetel #Cochetel

    • More than a thousand asylum seekers take part in mass sit-in in Niger

      More than a thousand asylum seekers have been taking part in a mass sit-in in front of the offices of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Agadez in northern Niger since December 16. They are protesting the terrible living conditions that they are forced to endure while waiting for the UNHCR to examine their cases, and are calling for better conditions and an acceleration to the entire process.

      A majority of the residents of the UN camp for asylum seekers in Agadez in northern Niger walked the 15 kilometres into town to take part in a protest on December 16.

      Nearly 1,600 asylum seekers are still waiting for refugee status. The large majority of them — more than 1,400 — are Sudanese. Others hail from the Central African Republic, Chad and Pakistan. Most of them arrived in 2017 and they blame both the UNHCR and Nigerien authorities for the extremely difficult conditions in the camp.

      https://observers.france24.com/en/20191224-niger-asylum-seekers-take-part-mass-sit-protest

    • Thread de Eric Reidy sur twitter, 05.01.2019

      Security forces forcefully dispersed a peaceful sit-in in front of #UNHCR's office in Agadez, Niger yesterday (Jan. 4). Many people were injured & 100s of people’s phones & belongings were confiscated.
      2/ Sudanese asylum seekers, many from Darfur, have staged a sit-in in front of the #UNHCR office in since Dec. 16 when they walked out en masse from a UNHCR administered camp 15km outside of #Agadez.
      3/ In a statement the asylum seekers said they had been completely neglected. Many suffered from psychological conditions & chronic diseases worsened by the harsh desert environment & that treatment by UNHCR staff & the handling of their asylum claims led to a total loss of trust

      4/ The Sudanese asylum seekers started arriving in Agadez in late 2017, seeking safe-haven from war & exploitation in #Libya. The population peeked at around 2,000. Tensions arose w the host population & the Nigerien gov viewed the Sudanese w suspicion & as a security threat.

      5/ In May 2018, the Nigerien gov deported 135 ppl back to Libya in violation of int law. UNHCR lobbied hard to prevent any further deportations & reached an agreement w authorities in #Niger to establish the camp outside of Agadez to reduce tensions

      https://www.thenewhumanitarian.org/special-report/2018/07/05/destination-europe-deportation

      6/ At some point, the relationship between the asylum seekers & UNHCR appears to have broken down leading to the recent protests, which have now ended with security forces using violence & the camp outside of #Agadez being burned down.

      7/ I’m still piecing everything together, but it’s important to keep in mind that this is a vulnerable population. Many have been displaced multiple times & experienced violence & tragedy in the past. They have been seeking safety for yrs & still haven’t found it. (Will update)

      https://twitter.com/Eric_Reidy/status/1213802520490831872

    • Niger breaks up Sudanese refugees sit-in as fire destroys their camp

      …jpg

      Niger’s authorities forcibly broke up a sit-in of Sudanese refugees outside UNHCR office in the arid area of Agadez, while some of them reportedly set ablaze the camp once returned by the police.

      Hundreds of Sudanese refugees in Niger had staged a sit-in outside the office of the UN agency for refugees in Agadez on 16 December to protest the bad conditions in the camp. Also, they blamed the UNHCR officials for neglecting them pointing to the long delay in the processing of asylum requests.

      For their part, the international officials asked the refugees to end the protest and return to their camps first before to deal with their demands. However, the Sudanese who had fled the insecurity in Libya refused to regain the camp.

      On Saturday morning, local officials and police and security officers surrounded the sit-inners and asked them to take the vehicles they brought with them to return to their camp 15 km from Agadez.

      Refugees who requested anonymity told Sudan Tribune that the security forces beat the refugees and shoved them to the vehicles when they refused the orders to evacuate the site.

      Photos and videos of the raid showed protesters severely injured on the head and legs.

      Aid workers in the area said the local authorities three days ago had informed the UNHRC of their plan to disperse the sit-in.

      Tragic development

      Once the authority forcibly moved the first batch of protesters back to the camp, a huge fire tore through the refugee camp and reduced it to ashes.

      When asked about the authors of the blaze some refugees said “irresponsible” refugees were desperate and set fire on the camp to protest the forced return to the camp.

      The tents were highly flammable, aid workers said.

      For his part, Vincent Cochetel, UNHCR Special Envoy for the Central Mediterranean Situation, said in a tweet on Saturday that the Sudanese refugees destroyed the camp because they demand to be resettled in Europe.

      “80% of the reception centre destroyed by a minority of refugees from Darfur in Agadez who only want to hear about resettlement to Europe,” said Cochetel.

      “Destroying the asylum space in Niger or elsewhere is easier than building and protecting it. It is a sad day for refugee protection in Niger,” he added.

      The authorities arrested many refugees while others fled in the desert and their whereabouts are unknown.

      Also, it is not clear what the Nigerien authorities will do for the over 200 refugees who were waiting outside the UNHCR office to be transported to the camp.

      Refugees say they fear that they would be transported to Madama on the border between Niger and Libya.

      On 7 May 2018, Nigerien police deported 135 Sudanese refugees to Madama and expelled to Libya as they had already protested the bad conditions in Agadez camp. The move had been denounced by critics as a violation of international law.

      https://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article68808

    • Niger: Sudan refugee sit-in violently dispersed

      Niger security forces broke up the sit-in set up by Sudanese refugees in front of the offices of the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) in Agadez on Saturday, reportedly using excessive violence.

      Speaking to Radio Dabanga from Agadez, a refugee reported that 453 refugees were detained. 230 refugees suffered various injuries. Army officers and policemen stole 670 mobile phones from them.

      Their camp reportedly burned down completely. Hundreds of refugees, among them children, women, disabled, and seniors, spent Sunday night in the arid desert in the freezing cold. There are shortages of water, food, and medicines.

      The refugees called on the international community to intervene urgently and save them from the conditions in which they live. They also demand their resettlement procedures be completed.

      Three weeks ago, thousands of refugees left the refugee camp in Agadez in protest against the failure to complete their resettlement procedures and the deteriorating conditions in the camp.

      The Sudanese refugees in Niger have been a topic in the peace talks in Juba during the past weeks.

      Last year, Niger’s authorities sent Sudanese refugees back to Libya, the country they fled from to Niger.

      https://www.dabangasudan.org/en/all-news/article/niger-sudan-refugee-sit-in-violently-dispersed

    • Agadez/Incendie #centre_humanitaire : 335 demandeurs d’asile interpellés

      Après l’incendie du centre d’hébergement survenu hier matin et attribué à un groupe de demandeurs d’asile, M.Seini, Procureur de la République près le tribunal de grande instance d’Agadez a tenu un point de presse auquel la presse privée n’était pas conviée.

      Dans le souci d’informer nos lecteurs, nous vous livrons son contenu.

       » le 16 décembre 2019, plusieurs dizaines de demandeurs d’asile ont entrepris une marche de protestation qui les a conduit devant le bureau local du HCR Agadez. Ils avaient décidé d’occuper illégalement les espaces publics aux abords dudit bureau et maintenu un sit-in qui a perduré jusqu’au 4 janvier 2020.
      Vu qu’ils occupaient ces espaces en violation de la loi, la question a été inscrite au menu de la réunion du conseil de sécurité régional du 2 janvier 2020. Au cours de cette réunion, il a été décidé de faire respecter la loi notamment de les faire déguerpir. Et au besoin de les ramener sur leur site d’hébergement. C’est ainsi que le 4 janvier 2020, les autorités régionales et municipales se sont déplacées sur les lieux accompagnées des forces de sécurité. Après sommation donnée par le maire, les agents de sécurité ayant constaté que ces gens n’ont pas obtempéré, ont alors intervenu pour les embarquer et ramener sur leur site d’hébergement. Une fois là-bas, dès qu’ils étaient descendus des bus et camions qui les transportaient, ils ont mis le feu au centre et en même temps s’en sont pris aux forces de l’ordre en leur jetant des projectiles. Il ressort des constatations faites par les services que sur les 331 habitations qu’ils appellent RHU, 290 sont complétement calcinées. Ainsi que l’infirmerie. Des pare-brises de bus ont été cassés et deux personnes légèrement blessées. 162 téléphones portables, 31 couteaux et 12 barres de fer ont été pris sur les manifestants. Parmi eux, 335 identifiés comme meneurs de l’incendie ont été interpellés et mis à la disposition des enquêteurs de la police.
      Voyez-vous ! Ces gens qui sont sensés être là pour avoir la protection se comportent ainsi jusqu’à commetre des infractions graves à la loi pénale notamment attroupement non armé sur la voie publique, la rébellion, la destruction volontaire des biens meubles et immeubles, publics, et l’incendie volontaire de lieu servant d’habitation.
      Donc, malgré leur nombre très élevé, et au vu de la gravité des faits qui leur sont reprochés, nous avons décidé de les poursuivre pour qu’ils répondent de leurs actes. Compte tenu du fait qu’ils sont des étrangers, des avis de poursuite seront notifiées aux autorités compétentes ».

      A Agadez, beaucoup de gens s’inquiètent du sort de centaines d’autres demandeurs d’asile qui n’ont plus de toit et parmi eux des femmes et des enfants.

      Pour Athan, un de ces demandeurs d’asile : » le Haut Commissariat aux Réfugiés (HCR) d’Agadez est l’unique responsable de ce qui nous arrive à Agadez ».

      La visite prévue demain mardi 7 janvier 2020 à Agadez de Mme Alexandra Morelli, représentante du HCR au Niger apportera t-elle une solution à ce problème ? Attendons de voir.


      https://airinfoagadez.com/2020/01/07/agadez-incendie-centre-humanitaire-335-demandeurs-dasile-interpelles

    • Demandeurs d’asile soudanais à Agadez : La grande désillusion

      L’installation d’une antenne du Haut Commissariat pour les Réfugiés à Agadez en Mai 2016 a contribué fortement à l’afflux de demandeurs d’asile de plusieurs nationalités. La majorité d’entre eux, après avoir fui leur pays en guerre, cas du Darfour au Soudan, se sont retrouvés piégés dans l’imbroglio libyen. C’est ainsi que près de 3000 soudanais ont cherché refuge à Agadez, une ville du nord Niger.
      Sur place, l’espoir d’une vie meilleure s’est peu à peu transformé en un véritable cauchemar. D’aucuns parmi ces prétendants à l’asile, las d’attendre, posent des actes désespérés sous forme des signaux.
      Le 14 avril dernier, un jeune soudanais a tenté de mettre fin à ses jours en se tailladant le cou. D’autres s’attaquent aux biens d’autrui pour se nourrir. Des actes contraires à la loi et au bon sens. Pourquoi et comment en est-on arrivé à ce stade ?
      APAC–Niger a mené l’enquête sur un drame que tente vaille que vaille de minimiser à l’opinion et les autorités en charge de la question et les ONG concernées.

      ----------------

      Depuis la dégradation de la situation sécuritaire en Libye les ressortissants soudanais ont connu des difficultés à mener une vie tranquille, ils ont alors choisi d’immigrer vers le Niger. « Notons que la première grande vague est arrivée à Agadez en 2017. Tous ces migrants ont transité par la frontière du sud libyen, Sebha et Mourzouk en passant par Madama et Dirkou à la frontière avec le Niger », selon M. Soukeyrajou Yacouba, responsable à la Direction régionale d’état civil.
      Dès leur arrivée à Agadez ils ont été pris en charge par l’Organisation Internationale pour la Migration (OIM) et le Haut Commissariat pour les Réfugiés (HCR) appuyés par des ONG comme l’APBE (Action pour le Bien-être) et COOPI une ONG Italienne.
      Après l’enregistrement et l’enrôlement biométrique, dénommé BIMS, les migrants qui le désirent font une demande d’asile au niveau de la Direction de l’état-civil. « L’asile est octroyé par l’état du Niger seul habilité à le faire car le Niger reste souverain sur cette question, les migrants ayant fui la guerre pour des raisons sécuritaires sont priorisés par rapport à ceux qui ont fui pour des raisons économiques, d’autre part les mineurs non accompagnés très vulnérables bénéficient d’un traitement particulier vu leur situation, on trouve très souvent des cas de tortures sur les migrants venant de la Libye », a expliqué à APAC M. Soukeyrajou Yacouba. « C’est un long processus qui demande de la patience », explique un commis du service de l’état-civil. Une patience que n’ont plus aujourd’hui les Soudanais présents à Agadez.

      Déception et désolation au quotidien

      Malgré tous les efforts des ONG pour leur venir en aide, leurs cris de détresse s’amplifient. Ils crient leur ras-le-bol à qui veut les écouter. Dans le camp ou dans les rues d’Agadez. Ils ne s’en cachent point. « Si j’avais su que je me retrouverai dans une telle situation à Agadez, j’aurais préféré rester d’où je viens. Au moins là bas, j’étais dans une communauté humaine, j’avais le moral. A Agadez, nous sommes loin de la ville. Comme si nous sommes des animaux. Nous sommes abandonnés à nous-mêmes ici. On n’a pas accès aux soins les plus élémentaires. On n’a pas une ambulance qui peut rapidement évacuer un malade vers la ville. Chaque soir, nous sommes dans la hantise que Boko Haram nous attaque. », nous a confié Mahmoud H, un jeune soudanais de 22 ans.

      Venus d’abord par petits groupes à Agadez, le nombre de demandeurs d’asile soudanais n’a fait que croitre au fil de mois jusqu’à atteindre presque 3000 personnes. Toutes sont en quête de protection et d’un mieux-être au Niger après avoir fui la guerre au Darfour et les sévices en Libye. Mais hélas, pour beaucoup, c’est la grande désillusion : « nous avons quitté l’enfer libyen pour tomber dans l’enfer d’Agadez. Ici aussi nous sommes mal vus ! C’est la suspicion et la haine dans tous les regards », disent-ils.

      Assis à même le sol d’un des hangars du centre d’accueil pour les réfugiés inauguré en mars 2017, Aly, est démoralisé. Il ne parle pas. Il observe. Dans ses yeux, aucune lueur. Ni de joie, ni d’espoir. Il refuse de regarder ses “ cochambriers”.
      Il nous confie en aparté. “ Ma place n’est pas ici. Pas sous ce hangar. Pas avec ces gens-là. On se bagarre tous les temps. Je ne suis pas comme eux et personne ne veut me comprendre. J’ai un statut que je n’ai pas choisi et qui fait que bien qu’étant homme, ma place n’est pas avec les hommes”.

      L’aveu d’Aly est clair mais non encore avoué. Un de ceux avec qui il partage le hangar balance le secret d’Aly : “ C’est un pédé ! C’est haram ! On ne veut pas de lui sous le même toit que nous”, dit-il rageur. Comble de cynisme ! Summum de l’intolérance, il dit menaçant à notre adresse : “On ne mange pas avec lui ! Il est malade. C’est un fils de Sheitan ! ”.

      Comment se fait-il que Aly, bien qu’ayant un statut particulier soit mis avec des hommes qui n’ont aucun respect pour son choix de vie ? “ Où voulez-vous qu’il soit ? Avec les femmes ? ”, nous répond calmement un agent du centre. “ Est-ce qu’il a même avoué au HCR son statut ! Je ne crois pas ! », a fait remarquer l’agent.
      Joint par le reporter de APAC Niger, le service du HCR Agadez dit ceci : « nous n’avons pas eu de cas pareil ! »

      Assiatou, est elle aussi une jeune femme du Darfour. Sa vie est un drame grandeur nature. Elle a tout perdu au Soudan du sud. Parents et conjoint.
      En Libye, elle a souffert vingt-sept mois les affres de violences sexuelles. “Les hommes sont cruels. Le sexe, partout et toujours le sexe. Comment puis-je me protéger quand on ne te demande aucune permission avant d’abuser de ton propre corps ? Dites-moi comment dire non à un homme drogué et violent qui a le droit de vie et de mort sur toi ? Mon corps de femme m’a permis de survivre jusqu’à aujourd’hui mais au prix de maints viols et supplices. De 2012 à aujourd’hui, j’ai porté trois grossesses que je n’ai jamais désirées. Deux sont mortes en Libye et j’ai le dernier ici avec moi ! Ne me demandez pas qui en est le père, je vous jure que je l’ignore !”.
      Son statut de femme éprouvée et allaitante fait qu’elle est mieux traitée que les autres. « Elle a beaucoup besoin de soutien surtout moral », fait remarquer une volontaire humanitaire trouvée sur place.

      À Agadez, Aly et Assiatou ont trouvé plusieurs centaines d’autres demandeurs d’asile. Tout comme eux, ils ont fui dans la douleur. Le Soudan d’abord, et la Libye ensuite. Hélas, leur rêve de liberté, leur espoir d’un lendemain meilleur se meurt aujourd’hui à Agadez.
      Au contact de dures réalités, Aly et Assiatou ne croient plus aux organisations internationales d’Agadez. « Elles font de la discrimination entre nous et les Erythréens ! Ce n’est pas normal », a fait le jeune soudanais Aly.

      « Ces soudanais ne sont pas reconnaissants…. »

      Ces demandeurs d’asile ignorent-ils que depuis la fin d’année 2017, 1.450 réfugiés, dont 1.292 Soudanais, sont arrivés dans la cité du nord du Niger jusqu’à atteindre le chiffre record de 3000 aujourd’hui ? Bien-sûr que non ! Devant leur afflux, et prises au dépourvu, les organisations humanitaires présentes à Agadez ne savent plus où donner de la tête. « On ne peut que s’occuper des personnes considérées comme « les plus vulnérables ». C’est-à-dire les femmes, les enfants et les malades », explique un agent du HCR en poste à Agadez.

      Et pourtant de l’avis d’un agent de la Direction de l’Etat-civil, « Leur situation s’améliore de plus en plus. Tenez bien ! Au début, les hommes vivaient en pleine rue, juste en face de nos locaux, des fois sous 42° de chaleur. Ils n’avaient même pas accès aux toilettes et faisaient leurs besoins à l’air libre ou dans des parcelles vides. Mais aujourd’hui, ils mangent bien, dorment bien et se promènent sans problème dans la ville d’Agadez ».

      Mais bon nombre de soudanais joints par APAC réfutent ces dires. Ils soulignent « qu’ils manquent de tout : nourriture, soins de santé, espaces sanitaires adéquats et même qu’ils n’ont droit à aucune intimité ».
      « C’est un site temporaire », nous a répondu à ce sujet Davies Kameau, chef de bureau UNHCR Agadez. « Nous attendons que les soudanais soient d’abord reconnus comme demandeurs d’asile par le Niger », a t-il poursuivi.

      Pour beaucoup de ces soudanais, le droit à l’asile leur est refusé au Niger et : « ce n’est pas normal. C’est un déni de droit clair et simple ! On fait des faveurs aux autres mais pas nous ! », a dénoncé lui aussi Hadji, un soudanais trentenaire.

      Le statut de réfugié peine à leur être accordé

      « Vous n’êtes pas sans savoir qu’il n’y a pas encore eu de session de la Commission nationale d’éligibilité (CNE) pour le cas d’Agadez mais il y a eu une commission d’éligibilité délocalisée à Tahoua pour statuer sur le cas de demandes jugées urgentes. Six ont été accordées et une rejetée. (…). C’est vrai que les gens ont l’impression que ça traîne mais en vérité c’est le souci de bien faire qui fait que le processus prend du temps », affirme. Soukeyrajou Yacouba à APAC.

      D’après nos sources jusqu’à à cette date, le Niger refuse de se prononcer sur la finalité de ces demandes d’asile.
      Pourquoi alors ? Joint par le reporter de APAC, Lawali Oudou, acteur de la société civile d’Agadez a expliqué : « Cela fait plusieurs mois que les négociations concernant le statut à accorder aux soudanais peinent à aboutir. C’est parce que les autorités du Niger ont peur de prendre cette lourde responsabilité surtout au sujet d’Agadez, une région instable et qui a connu deux rébellions armées ».
      En effet, le prétexte de la sécurité explique le refus de l’Etat du Niger d’accorder le droit d’asile à ces soudanais. « Ils sont en lien avec des pays en guerre : la Libye, le Tchad, le Soudan. Ils sont arabophones, tout comme la majorité des terroristes. On a peur qu’ils installent des bases terroristes ici », a affirmé à notre confrère Le Point le député Mano Aghali. « Les populations d’Agadez commencent à manifester contre la présence de ces gens dans la ville d’Agadez. C’est pourquoi nous prions le HCR d’accélérer le processus pour trouver une solution », s’est alarmé quant à lui Rhissa Feltou, alors maire d’Agadez.
      Mansour B. un jeune nigérien qui habite non loin du centre pour les réfugiés fait partie de ceux qui ne veulent plus des soudanais à Agadez. Et il le dit sans ambages : « ces soudanais ne sont pas reconnaissants vis-à-vis du Niger ». Il explique qu’ : « ils doivent remercier le Niger car aucun pays ne peut accepter ce qu’ils font ici à Agadez. Ils draguent nos femmes et nos filles souvent devant nos yeux ; ils coupent nos arbres et partent vendre le bois au marché pour acheter de l’alcool et de la drogue. Trop, c’est trop ! ».

      Des griefs infondés selon les soudanais

      Pour les soudanais, tous ces griefs sont infondés. « Nous sommes des civils et non des militaires. Nous n’avons aucun contact avec des groupes mafieux. Les autorités et même les populations locales nous comparent à des rebelles soudanais, pas comme des réfugiés. Si nous étions des combattants, on allait rester au pays pour nous défendre mais pas fuir comme des lâches », explique Al-Hassan.
      En attendant que leur cas soit clair, les soudanais se rongent les ongles à une quinzaine de kilomètres d’Agadez. Des couacs surviennent des fois entre eux mais aussi avec les populations riveraines du centre.

      Jusqu’à quand cette situation peut-elle tenir ? Un vent nouveau souffle au Soudan avec le changement de régime survenu. Peut-il augurer un lendemain meilleur pour tous ces jeunes soudanais bloqués aujourd’hui à Agadez ? L’Europe leur ouvrira t-elle un jour les bras ? Seront-ils laissés à Agadez pour qu’au fil du temps ils puissent se fondre à la population ?
      Telles sont les questions qui taraudent les esprits à Agadez et auxquelles des réponses doivent être données.


      https://airinfoagadez.com/2019/08/29/demandeurs-dasile-soudanais-a-agadez-la-grande-desillusion

    • Refugees in Niger Protest Against Delay of Resettlement and Dire Conditions

      Almost 1000 people have protested in front of the office of the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) in Agadez, Niger, against the poor conditions in the UNHCR-run facility and the delay of resettlement procedures. The systemic isolation in the centre is considered a model for “outsourcing of the asylum system outside Europe”.

      Hundreds of people, among them many refugees from Sudan, marched 18 km from the humanitarian centre where they are accommodated to the UNHCR headquarters to submit a memorandum bearing their demands to expedite their resettlement procedures and denounce the deteriorating humanitarian conditions in the facility. The march turned into a sit-in and is part of on-going series of refugee protests in Niger since early 2019.

      According to one of the protesters the facility is located in the middle of the desert lacking “the simplest means of life” as well as adequate education. Chronic disease is spreading among the refugees, many of which are unaccompanied who have been waiting in the facility for over two years, he added.

      In 2017, UNHCR established an Emergency Transit Mechanism (ETM) in Niger for the evacuation of vulnerable people from Libya identified for resettlement to Europe and elsewhere. As of November 2019, 2,143 out of 2,913 of those evacuated by UNHCR have been resettled.

      An increasing number of self-evacuated refugees have also arrived in Agadez from Libya with the hope of being resettled. Niger agreed to the ETM under the condition that all refugees would be resettled in Europe. However, as stated in a MEDAM police brief, for the self-evacuees, resettlement becomes increasingly unlikely and they were moved to a refugee camp outside the capital, which hampers local integration and their economic autonomy.

      The network Alarm Phone Sahara commented. “This situation occurs in a context where European states are seeking to outsource the processing of cases of refugees, who have fled wars and persecution in countries like in East Africa, to countries far from the borders of Europe. The state of Niger is currently serving as a model for the outsourcing of the asylum system towards outside Europe, receiving considerable amounts of money from EU member states.”

      Since 2017, a total of 4,252 persons have been evacuated from Libya: 2,913 to Niger, 808 to Italy and 531 to through the Emergency Transit Centre to Romania.

      https://www.ecre.org/refugees-in-niger-protest-against-delay-of-resettlement-and-dire-conditions

    • Agadez/Incendie centre humanitaire : » Je me suis sentie trahie… », affirme #Alexandra_Morelli, représentante du HCR au Niger

      En visite ce matin à Agadez, Mme Alexandra Morelli, représentante du HCR au Niger a répondu aux questions de Aïr Info :

      Extrait :


       » Je suis ici à Agadez pour apporter toute ma solidarité aux autorités locales et pour gérer ensemble cette crise. Pour comprendre profondément la nature et s’assurer qu’on continue à s’assurer qu’on continue à protéger et à donner de l’assistance aux victimes même parmi les soudanais de cet acte de vandalisme qui n’a pas de commentaires. Après l’incendie du site humanitaire ma réaction est celle d’une femme, d’une mère qui a cru en ses enfants, qui a tout fait avec le gouvernement du Niger pour leur garantir un espace de paix et de protection. Je me suis sentie trahie. C’est la première émotion humaine que j’ai eue, une émotion de douleur. Mais aujourd’hui, nous mettons les émotions de côté et on travaille avec le pragmatisme et la lucidité guidés par la solidarité et la loi du Niger ».

      Interview réalisée par
      Anicet Karim

      https://airinfoagadez.com/2020/01/07/agadez-incendie-centre-humanitaire-je-me-suis-sentie-trahie-affirme-a

    • A protest dispersed, a camp burned: Asylum seekers in Agadez face an uncertain future

      ‘Nobody can believe this is happening… because there [are] children, there are women that are sleeping inside the camp.’

      Early in the morning on 4 January, security forces carrying long, wooden sticks arrived outside the office of the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) in the city of Agadez, Niger: 600 or more asylum seekers, mostly from Sudan, were gathered in the street in front of the office.

      Since mid-December, they had been staging a sit-in to protest what they said was UNHCR’s “complete neglect” of their living conditions and the slow processing and mishandling of their asylum cases.

      By the end of the day, security forces had dispersed the sit-in, dozens of demonstrators were allegedly injured, more than 330 were arrested, and the camp set up to house asylum seekers outside the city was almost entirely burned to the ground.

      The events were only the latest in the more than two-year saga of the Sudanese in Agadez – a story that has always been part of a bigger picture.

      The arrival of the Sudanese to the long-time migration hub in northern Niger, beginning in November 2017, followed on the heels of European policies aimed at curbing the movement of people from West Africa to Libya and onward to Italy, as well as the initiation of a programme by the EU and UNHCR – the Emergency Transit Mechanism (ETM) – to evacuate people from Libyan detention centres, bringing them to Niamey, Niger’s capital, to await resettlement to Europe.

      Against this backdrop, some Sudanese in Libya, facing violence, rampant abuse, exploitation, and even slavery, turned south to escape, spurred on by rumours of aid and safety in Niger, and the vague possibility of a legal way to reach Europe. But authorities in Niger, itself focal point of EU efforts to stem migration in recent years, were not enthusiastic about the arrival of the Sudanese and worried that the presence of UNHCR in Agadez was acting as a “pull factor”, attracting people to the city from Libya.

      UNHCR is in a complicated position in Niger, according to Johannes Claes, an independent consultant and migration researcher who has followed the situation in Agadez since 2017.

      The organisation has had to navigate between allaying government fears of a “pull factor” while providing protection and services to the Sudanese, running the ETM – the “human face” of the EU’s otherwise harsh migration policies – and responding to a growing number of refugees and Nigeriens displaced by conflicts along the country’s borders. “It hasn’t been easy for them to manage this,” Claes said. “That is quite obvious.”

      Underlying the entire situation is a global shortage of refugee resettlement spots. UNHCR projects that 1.4 million refugees are in need of resettlement this year out of a population of nearly 26 million refugees worldwide. Last year, around 63,000 refugees were resettled through UNHCR-facilitated programmes, down from a high of 126,000 in 2016.

      “UNHCR everywhere is just overwhelmed by the numbers because they are completely dependent on slots allocated in Europe and North America, and those are really very, very few,” said Jérôme Tubiana, an independent researcher focusing on conflict and refugees in Sudan and Niger.
      Global resonance, local grievance

      Caught between restrictive EU migration policies and the global lack of resettlement spots, UNHCR’s struggle to provide services, protection, and long-term stability to asylum seekers and refugees has not been limited to Niger.

      In the past year, asylum seekers and refugees have protested in front of UNHCR offices in Libya, Lebanon, and elsewhere, and African asylum seekers in particular, including many Sudanese from Darfur, have accused UNHCR of discrimination and neglect. “[The protest in Agadez] was part of… a global story of frustration and a feeling of being, really, not treated as victims of war or mass crimes,” Tubiana said.

      Despite the global resonance, the trigger for the protest in Agadez appears to have been a local incident that took on symbolic significance as it spun through the rumour mill of a population that was already angry about the slow pace at which their asylum cases were being heard and desperate for information about their futures.

      “The core of the problem is why the procedures are slow and why some people were informed… that their files had been lost,” a Sudanese asylum seeker in Agadez told TNH on 17 December, the day after around 600 people walked out of the camp where they were housed and set up the sit-in in front of the UNHCR office. “There is a complete lack of credibility… represented by the loss of the files,” the protesters said in a statement that circulated via text message.

      “We know that these people are fighters, soldiers, and they came here because now they expect to go to Europe.”

      UNHCR Niger confirmed that the government agency responsible for processing asylum requests had misplaced around five files several months earlier, but it said the files had been reconstituted and resubmitted for consideration. “From UNHCR’s side, we can strongly confirm that no registration files nor resettlement requests have been lost and that no one has to re-conduct interviews,” UNHCR Niger told TNH.

      But by the time news about the files spread, the Sudanese had already been growing frustrated, disillusioned, and distrustful for quite some time, and UNHCR’s reassurances fell on deaf ears.
      A shaky beginning

      From the beginning, the position of the Sudanese in Agadez has rested on shaky ground.

      Hundreds of thousands of West Africans, sharing a common language and cultural background with Nigeriens, have passed through the city en route to Libya over the years.

      The Sudanese were the first group of outsiders to turn south from Libya in search of protection, and Nigerien authorities didn’t trust their motives. “We know that these people are fighters, soldiers, and they came here because now they expect to go to Europe,” Niger’s minister of interior, Mohamed Bazoum, told TNH in 2018.

      But UNHCR has maintained that the Sudanese are not fighters. For the most part, they had been driven from their homes in Darfur by conflict and government-sponsored ethnic cleansing that began in the early 2000s. They had lived in camps for the displaced in Sudan or Chad before humanitarian funding ebbed or conflict followed them and they began criss-crossing the region in search of safety, stable living conditions, and better prospects for their futures. In the process, many had been tortured, trafficked, raped, or had witnessed and suffered various forms of violence.

      At the peak in 2018, there were nearly 2,000 Sudanese in Agadez, and tensions with the local community simmered as they filled up limited UNHCR housing in the city and spilled into the streets. At the beginning of May, authorities arrested more than 100 of the Sudanese, trucked them to the Niger-Libya border, dropped them in the desert, and told them to leave.

      The incident was a major violation of the international laws protecting asylum seekers, and in its aftermath, UNHCR, which had been caught off guard by the arrival of the Sudanese in the first place, scrambled to make sure it wouldn’t happen again and to carve out a space where the Sudanese and other asylum seekers would be safe.
      ‘It was a bit existential’

      The government and UNHCR settled on a plan to open the camp – which UNHCR calls a humanitarian centre – 15 kilometres outside Agadez to de-escalate tensions, and the government eventually agreed to start hearing asylum claims from the Sudanese and others. But a message had already been sent: the number of Sudanese coming to Agadez slowed to a trickle and several hundred ended up returning to Libya or headed elsewhere on their own.

      By last December, there were around 1,600 asylum seekers, mostly Sudanese, in Agadez, and 1,200 of them were housed at the humanitarian centre. According to UNHCR, 223 people had already received refugee status in Niger, and around 500 were set to have their cases heard in the coming months. Thirty-one of the most vulnerable had been transferred to Italy as part of a humanitarian corridor, and around 100 others were in line for refugee resettlement or other humanitarian programmes that would take them out of Niger.

      “It’s not a humane situation.”

      “It was slowly, slowly ongoing, but there was a process,” Alessandra Morelli, UNHCR’s head of office in Niger, told TNH. “Nothing was in the air or in… limbo.”

      “We managed to stabilise a little bit a large group of people that for years were going from one place to another in [search] of protection,” Morelli added. “I think that was the success.”

      But many of the Sudanese in Agadez saw the situation differently. The humanitarian centre was isolated and on the edge of the desert. In the summer, the weather was very hot and in the winter, very cold. There was little shade, and the insides of the tents boiled. Storms carrying billowing clouds of sand would blow out of the desert, blocking out visibility and blanketing everything in dust. Attempts to drill wells for water failed. “It’s not a humane situation,” one asylum seeker told TNH last April. “The way they treat us here they wouldn’t treat any person.”

      “We saw… very high rates of mental illness, numerous suicide attempts, women miscarrying on a regular basis or having very, very… low-weight babies; people were wandering off into the middle of the desert due to mental illness or desperation,” a former UNHCR staff member, who worked for the organisation on and off for six years and spent eight months in Agadez, told TNH on condition of anonymity. “It was a bit existential.”

      UNHCR partnered with organisations to provide psychological support and medical care to the asylum seekers. “[But] the level of service and the treatment that these people have been receiving… has been very low,” said Claes, the migration researcher. “It is very hard to service that camp. It is not an easy area to be operating, but it’s also not impossible,” he added.
      Protest and dispersal

      The low level of service, slow processing of asylum requests and lack of clear information about what was happening with people’s cases grated on the Sudanese.

      “This is not the first time that people are expressing themselves as unhappy,” Claes said. “This was obviously the worst that we’ve seen so far, but it was not entirely unexpected that this would at some point get out of hand.”

      When the sit-in began, UNHCR in Niger said the asylum seekers were pushing to be resettled to Europe. “Resettlement is a protection tool for the most vulnerable, not a right,” UNHCR Niger told TNH. “Most asylum seekers currently in Agadez are not among the most vulnerable refugees, and other more vulnerable cases will be privileged for resettlement.”

      The claim that the protest was only about resettlement prompted the former UNHCR employee to speak out. “They keep rolling out resettlement as this kind of strawman to distract from the fact that these people have been neglected,” the former employee said. “They’ve been neglected because they’re not a priority for anybody.”

      As the sit-in wore on, the governor of Agadez, Sadou Soloke, warned in a radio broadcast that the sit-in would be dispersed – forcibly if necessary – if the protesters did not return to the camp outside the city. “We can no longer stand by and watch them trample on our laws while they are being hosted by us,” the governor said of the asylum seekers.

      The protesters did not seek the required authorisation before the sit-in began and “rejected any proposal for a friendly settlement”, Agadez mayor Maman Boukari told TNH in writing. “In accordance with the provisions of the law, we ordered the police to move the refugees,” he said.

      “Nobody can believe this is happening… because there [are] children, there are women that are sleeping inside the camp.”

      But the asylum seekers at the sit-in had no intention of returning to the camp before their grievances were addressed. The way they saw things, going back to the camp would only mean more waiting and uncertainty. “We expect disaster at any time because we have lost trust in the government and employees of UNHCR,” one demonstrater told TNH via text message on 3 January, anticipating the dispersal.

      The following morning, security forces arrived with lorries and buses to take people back to the camp.
      Aftermath

      As the smoke settled from the fire at the humanitarian site, different versions of what transpired emerged.

      According to asylum seekers at the sit-in, security forces forced people into the vehicles, beating those who didn’t comply, and severely injuring many. Mayor Boukari told TNH that no force was used to disperse the demonstration and that there were no recorded cases of injury.

      Cell phone videos taken by asylum seekers show several instances of security forces hitting people with sticks or batons, and dragging them across the ground. Photos taken afterward show people with bloody wounds on their heads and bandaged limbs. But it is unclear from the videos and photos how widespread or severe the violence was, or what injuries people sustained.

      Despite the different versions of events, one thing is certain: once back at the camp, a confrontation broke out between security forces and some of the asylum seekers. It appears – from accounts given to TNH by the mayor, UNHCR, and at least three asylum seekers – that an unknown number of people, angry at the dispersal of the sit-in, then started a blaze and burned most of the camp to the ground. Other accounts, that seem less credible, suggest the government used teargas at the camp and started the fire.

      “The discussion of what Agadez will become is still on going with the government.”

      “[Security forces] beat them… too much. When they’re back [from the sit-in], they hate everything and destroy it,” said one asylum seeker, who didn’t participate in the protest but was in the camp during the fire. “This is [a] crazy idea. Nobody can accept [it]. Nobody can believe this is happening… because there [are] children, there are women that are sleeping inside the camp,” the asylum seeker added.

      Miraculously, no one was seriously injured in the fire.

      In its aftermath, 336 people were arrested for arson and planning the sit-in. As of 30 January, 196 were still being held in custody, of which 61 had been formally charged, according to UNHCR. Other Sudanese who are not currently in custody are also expected to receive judicial summons, UNHCR added.

      After several weeks, the government gave UNHCR permission to install temporary shelter for the people still staying at the camp – they had been sleeping outside in rough shelters they cobbled together or in communal buildings on the site that survived the fire.

      But the future of the effort to create a space to protect asylum seekers and refugees in Agadez is still uncertain. UNHCR is transferring some asylum seekers from Agadez to housing in Niamey and another UNHCR centre near the capital. “The discussion of what Agadez will become is still on going with the government,” Morelli said.

      In the meantime, the asylum seekers still don’t have any more certainty about their futures than they did before the protest started, and some have told TNH they feel even more vulnerable and disillusioned. UNHCR said the government will respect the status of people who have already been recognised as refugees and continue to review asylum claims from people who have submitted files.

      That process has already dragged on for more than two years, and ambiguity about why it is taking so long and where exactly it is heading was at the root of the protest to begin with. Following the dispersal, one Sudanese asylum seeker told TNH that he feared persecution by authorities in Niger and had returned to Libya with two of his friends. Others do not want to return to the violence and chaos of Libya and feel they have no option but to stay in Niger.

      “I’m still in UNHCR’s hands. What they tell me, I’m ready,” one asylum seeker told TNH. “People, they hate the situation… [but] there’s no other choice.”

      https://www.thenewhumanitarian.org/news-feature/2020/02/10/Sudanese-asylum-seekers-Niger-Agadez-protest-EU-migration-policy

  • Alexa d’Amazon se cache dans cet exosquelette
    https://www.tomsguide.fr/alexa-damazon-se-cache-dans-cet-exosquelette

    Alexa est présente sur de nombreux appareils allant des smartphones aux lampes futuristes comme celles de General Electric. Mais c’est la première fois que l’assistant personnel intelligent s’intègre à un matériel médical destiné à aider les personnes atteintes de troubles neurologiques. L’initiative vient de Bionik Laboratories, une firme spécialisée en robotique, qui a associé le logiciel d’Amazon à son exosquelette global tronc inférieur, connu sous le nom d’ARKE. L’intégration d’Alexa devrait permettre (...)

    #Amazon #algorithme #exosquelette #robotique #Alexa #santé #conditions #travail

    ##santé
    https://cdn.tomsguide.fr/content/uploads/sites/2/2017/08/arkealexa-1231-0.jpg

  • Alexa, what is hidden behind your contract with the NHS ?
    https://www.privacyinternational.org/long-read/3298/alexa-what-hidden-behind-your-contract-nhs

    Following a series of FOI requests from Privacy International and other organisations, the Department of Health and Social Care has now released its contract with Amazon, regarding the use of NHS content by Alexa, Amazon’s virtual assistant. The content of the contract is to a big extent redacted, and we contest the Department of Health’s take on the notion of public interest. Remember when in July this year the UK government announced a partnership with Amazon so that people would now be (...)

    #Amazon #algorithme #Alexa #BigData #data #BigPharma #santé #PrivacyInternational

    ##santé

  • Le gouvernement britannique autorise Amazon à accéder aux données de 40 millions de patients
    https://korii.slate.fr/tech/gouvernement-britannique-amazon-acces-donnees-medicales-40-millions-pati

    L’ONG Privacy International dénonce un accord passé entre le fabricant d’Alexa et le ministère de de la Santé qui va au-delà de l’annonce initiale. Outre-Manche, l’exécutif dirigé par Boris Jonhson essuie actuellement une pluie de critiques pour avoir validé une autorisation d’accès aux informations médicales stockées sur les serveurs du NHS (National Health Service) et mises à la disposition d’Amazon sans aucune compensation financière et sans l’accord des patient·es. En juillet dernier, Matt Hancock, (...)

    #Amazon #Alexa #BigData #BigPharma #data #NationalHealthSystem-NHS #santé

    ##santé

  • Bernie Sanders and AOC Want to Commit $180 Billion to Turn Public Housing Green – Mother Jones
    https://www.motherjones.com/environment/2019/11/bernie-sanders-and-aoc-just-unveiled-a-green-new-deal-for-public-housin

    On Thursday, New York Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders introduced a new bill that would dedicate billions of dollars to energy retrofits for America’s dilapidated public housing stock. The Green New Deal for Public Housing Act would commit up to $180 billion over 10 years to upgrading 1.2 million federally owned homes.

    At a press conference outside the Capitol on Thursday, Ocasio-Cortez said a bill focused on public housing reflects the larger aim of the Green New Deal to prioritize “frontline communities”—those that are most likely to be harmed by the climate crisis. “In the Bronx alone, 2,400 public housing residents may be going without heat tonight. That is inhumane,” she said. “That is environmental injustice.”

    The bill is an effort to bag two birds with one stone. America’s public housing portfolio is in a shambles, with deferred maintenance costs nationwide running into the billions. The bill introduced by AOC and Sanders would bring that backlog up to date while also reducing the energy consumption from this aging housing stock.

    Overall, buildings are responsible for about 39 percent of global carbon emissions, and about one-third of emissions in the U.S. That puts energy retrofits front and center in debates about how to arrest climate change.

    “If we have to do all of this work anyway, what would it cost to take this a step further and do deep energy retrofits that get the nation’s entire public housing stock at or near a net-zero standard?” Fleming said.

    The bill, which is cosponsored by Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, would create some 250,000 jobs—including high-paying jobs and union jobs, as the proposal’s backers are quick to point out. Some of these would benefit public housing residents themselves. A bill that would actually put severely delayed federal upgrades into motion would not only spur new opportunities, it would promote economies of scale to boost industries in weatherization and energy retrofits, its backers say.

    “Policies such as this which protect the needs of workers, taxpayers and community should be implemented wherever public funds are spent,” said Mike Prohaska, business manager for New York’s Construction & General Building Laborers Local 79, in a statement.

    The bill would have a seismic impact in New York City, where the nation’s largest public housing agency faces deferred maintenance costs of nearly $32 billion. Federal prosecutors accused the New York City Housing Authority of “systematic misconduct, indifference and outright lies” following an investigation into elevated blood lead levels among public housing residents. A local solution to the city’s public housing crisis looks impossible. In fact, earlier this year, HUD Secretary Ben Carson named a federal monitor to oversee the the New York City Housing Authority.

    The AOC–Sanders bill also promotes public housing as a goal in itself. A provision of the bill would repeal the Faircloth Amendment, a federal rule that caps the construction of new public housing units. Data for Progress has outlined a vision for a progressive housing agenda that leans heavily on public housing and other goals that current federal law (and federal funding levels) make difficult or impossible. People’s Action, a grassroots group, introduced a policy platform called the Homes Guarantee that outlines many of the same goals.

    Housing has emerged as a high-profile issue in the Democratic primary, with numerous candidates touting a range of plans and reforms. In the fall, Ocasio-Cortez produced her own suite of protections for tenants, immigrants, children, and others, most notably a proposal for a national rent control policy. The left has found a policy arena in which they have common ground with establishment Democrats—at least in terms of big-sky proposals.

    #Green_New_Deal#Logement #Alexandria_Ocasio_Cortez #Bernie_Sanders #Ecologie #Economie #Logement_social

  • Alexa, did he do it ? Smart device could be witness in suspicious Florida death
    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/nov/01/alexa-florida-death-witness-amazon-echo

    Sylvia Galva Crespo killed by spear to chest in own home Amazon Echo may hold evidence as husband charged Calling the witness – Alexa. Police in Florida are investigating whether they have stumbled on a silent witness to a possible murder and are trying to get the truth from “her”. Sylvia Galva Crespo, 32, was killed by a spear to the chest at home in Hallandale Beach, Florida, north of Miami, in July, which her husband, Adam Crespo, 43, has portrayed as a mysterious accident. But police (...)

    #Amazon #Alexa #domotique #criminalité #délation #écoutes

    ##criminalité
    https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/aa76598faf4bf5014dabaeb8ee16a50eb415bc63/0_224_6720_4032/master/6720.jpg

  • ’Alexa, are you invading my privacy ?’ – the dark side of our voice assistants
    https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/oct/09/alexa-are-you-invading-my-privacy-the-dark-side-of-our-voice-assistants

    There are more than 100m Alexa-enabled devices in our homes. But are they fun time-savers or the beginning of an Orwellian nightmare One day in 2017, Alexa went rogue. When Martin Josephson, who lives in London, came home from work, he heard his Amazon Echo Dot voice assistant spitting out fragmentary commands, seemingly based on his previous interactions with the device. It appeared to be regurgitating requests to book train tickets for journeys he had already taken and to record TV shows (...)

    #Google #Amazon #Echo #Alexa #domotique #biométrie #voix #surveillance #écoutes #EPIC (...)

    ##reconnaissance
    https://i.guim.co.uk/img/uploads/2019/10/08/Ear-At-The-Door-(Web).jpg

  • The Pioneering Maps of #Alexander_von_Humboldt | History | Smithsonian

    https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/pioneering-maps-alexander-von-humboldt-180973342

    The German naturalist and explorer Alexander von Humboldt was one of the most celebrated scientists of the 19th century. In 1869, on the 100th anniversary of his birth, 25,000 people gathered in New York’s Central Park to listen to speeches extolling his accomplishments and witness the unveiling of a large bronze bust of Humboldt, who had died ten years earlier. Flags and enormous posters showing Humboldt’s face lined the streets of Manhattan. Similar celebrations took place around the world—in Berlin, Humboldt’s birthplace, 80,000 admirers gathered in the chilly rain to listen to eulogies and songs sung in his honor.

    It’s hard to imagine any modern scientist achieving such celebrity, and now, 250 years after his birth, Humboldt himself has largely been forgotten by the general public. But as historian Andrea Wulf wrote in her 2015 biography of Humboldt, The Invention of Nature, his scientific legacy lives on in scores of geographic features and place names, from a glacier in Greenland to a mountain range in Antarctica. (The state of Nevada was almost named Humboldt, Wulf writes.) The Latin names of nearly 300 plants and more than 100 animals pay homage to him, including the aggressive, predatory Humboldt squid, which can grow up to eight feet long and weigh 100 pounds.

    #cartoexperiment #cartographie #précurseurs