• Rückführung illegaler MigrantenNGOs üben scharfe Kritik an Nehammers Balkan-Plänen

    Österreich hat mit Bosnien die Rückführung illegaler Migranten vereinbart, Nehammer sagte Unterstützung zu. Laut NGOs mache sich Österreich damit „zum Komplizen eines Völkerrechtsbruches“.

    Innenminister #Karl_Nehammer (ÖVP) hat am Mittwoch seine Westbalkanreise fortgesetzt und mit Bosnien einen Rückführungsplan für irreguläre Migranten vereinbart. Mit dem Sicherheitsminister von Bosnien und Herzegowina, #Selmo_Cikotić, unterzeichnete er eine Absichtserklärung. Scharfe Kritik äußerten mehrere Initiativen in Österreich. Außerdem kündigte Nehammer an, dass Österreich für das abgebrannte Camp #Lipa 500.000 Euro bereitstellt, damit dieses winterfest gemacht wird.

    Die Arbeiten dazu haben laut dem Innenministerium bereits begonnen, mit dem Geld sollen ein Wasser- und Abwassernetz sowie Stromanschlüsse errichtet werden. Im Dezember war die Lage in Bihać eskaliert, nachdem das Camp Lipa im Nordwesten des Landes kurz vor Weihnachten von der Internationalen Organisation für Migration (IOM) geräumt worden war – mit der Begründung, dass es die bosnischen Behörden nicht winterfest gemacht hätten. Kurz darauf brannten die Zelte aus, den damaligen Berichten zufolge hatten Bewohner das Feuer selbst gelegt. Beobachter gehen davon aus, dass auch die Einheimischen das Feuer aus Wut auf die Flüchtenden gelegt haben könnten.

    Charterflüge für Migranten ohne Bleibechancen

    Zentrales Ziel der Balkanreise von Innenminister Nehammer ist die Erarbeitung von Rückführungsplänen mit den besuchten Ländern. Migranten ohne Bleibewahrscheinlichkeit, die laut Nehammer auch ein Sicherheitsproblem sind, sollen bereits von den Balkanländern in die Herkunftsländer zurückgebracht werden. Mit Bosnien wurde bereits ein Charterflug vereinbart. Damit zeige man den Menschen, dass es nicht sinnvoll sei, Tausende Euro in die Hände von Schleppern zu legen, ohne die Aussicht auf eine Bleibeberechtigung in der EU zu haben, betonte Nehammer.

    Die geplanten Rückführungen sollen über die im vergangenen Sommer bei der Ministerkonferenz in Wien angekündigte „Plattform gegen illegale Migration“ operativ organisiert werden. In die Koordinierungsplattform für Migrationspolitik mehrerer EU-Länder – darunter Deutschland – sowie der Westbalkanstaaten wird auch die EU-Kommission miteinbezogen.
    Beamte sollen im „Eskortentraining“ geschult werden

    Bosnien hat bereits auch konkrete Anliegen für Unterstützung vorgebracht. So sollen 50 sogenannte „Rückführungsspezialisten“ in Österreich trainiert werden. Diese sind bei Abschiebungen und freiwilligen Ausreisen für die Sicherheit in den Flugzeugen zuständig. Bei diesem sogenannten Eskortentraining werden die bosnischen Beamten theoretisch und praktisch geschult, in Absprache mit Frontex und unter Miteinbeziehung der Cobra, berichtete Berndt Körner, stellvertretender Exekutivdirektor von Frontex.

    „Wir helfen bei der Ausbildung, vermitteln Standards, das ändert aber nichts an der Verantwortlichkeit, die bleibt in den jeweiligen Ländern“, sagte er im Gespräch mit der APA. Es gehe darum, dass „alle internationalen Standards eingehalten werden“, betonte der österreichische Spitzenbeamte.
    NGOs sehen „falsches Zeichen“

    Scharfe Kritik an dem von Nehammer geplanten „Rückführungsplan“ übten unterdessen zahlreiche Initiativen aus der Zivilgesellschaft. „Wenn Österreich den Westbalkanländern helfen will, dann soll es diese Länder beim Aufbau von rechtsstaatlichen Asylverfahren unterstützen. Wenn allerdings Menschen, die in diesen Ländern keine fairen Verfahren erwarten können, einfach abgeschoben werden sollen und Österreich dabei hilft, macht es sich zum Komplizen eines Völkerrechtsbruches“, kritisierte etwa Maria Katharina Moser, Direktorin der Diakonie Österreich, in einer Aussendung.

    „Die Vertiefung der Zusammenarbeit mit der EU-Agentur Frontex ist ein falsches Zeichen“, erklärte Lukas Gahleitner-Gertz, Sprecher der NGO Asylkoordination Österreich. „Die Vorwürfe gegen Frontex umfassen inzwischen unterschiedlichste Bereiche von unterlassener Hilfeleistung über Beteiligung an illegalen Push-backs bis zur Verschwendung von Steuergeldern bei ausufernden Betriebsfeiern. Statt auf die strikte Einhaltung der völker- und menschenrechtlichen Verpflichtungen zu pochen, stärkt Österreich der umstrittenen Grenztruppe den Rücken.“

    „Im Flüchtlingsschutz müssen wir immer die Menschen im Auge haben, die Schutz suchen. Ich habe bei meiner Reise nach Bosnien selbst gesehen, unter welchen Bedingungen Geflüchtete leben müssen. Für mich ist klar: Diejenigen, die Schutz vor Verfolgung brauchen, müssen durch faire Asylverfahren zu ihrem Recht kommen“, sagte Erich Fenninger, Direktor der Volkshilfe Österreich und Sprecher der Plattform für eine menschliche Asylpolitik.

    https://www.kleinezeitung.at/politik/innenpolitik/5972469/Rueckfuehrung-illegaler-Migranten_NGOs-ueben-scharfe-Kritik-an

    #Autriche #Bosnie #accord #accord_bilatéral #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Balkans #renvois #route_des_Balkans #expulsions #Nehammer #Selmo_Cikotic #externalisation #camp_de_réfugiés #encampement #IOM #OIM #vols #charter #dissuasion #Plattform_gegen_illegale_Migration #machine_à_expulsion #Rückführungsspezialisten #spécialistes_du_renvoi (tentative de traduction de „Rückführungsspezialisten“) #avions #Eskortentraining #Frontex #Cobra #Berndt_Körner

  • #Campagnes de #dissuasion massive

    Pour contraindre à l’#immobilité les candidats à la migration, jugés indésirables, les gouvernements occidentaux ne se contentent pas depuis les années 1990 de militariser leurs frontières et de durcir leur législation. Aux stratégies répressives s’ajoutent des méthodes d’apparence plus consensuelle : les campagnes d’information multimédias avertissant des #dangers du voyage.

    « Et au lieu d’aller de l’avant, il pensa à rentrer. Par le biais d’un serment, il dit à son cousin décédé : “Si Dieu doit m’ôter la vie, que ce soit dans mon pays bien-aimé.” » Cette #chanson en espagnol raconte le périple d’un Mexicain qui, ayant vu son cousin mourir au cours du voyage vers les États-Unis, se résout à rebrousser chemin. Enregistrée en 2008 grâce à des fonds gouvernementaux américains, elle fut envoyée aux radios de plusieurs pays d’Amérique centrale par une agence de #publicité privée, laquelle se garda bien de révéler l’identité du commanditaire (1).

    Arme de découragement typiquement américaine ? Plusieurs États européens recourent eux aussi à ces méthodes de #communication_dissuasive, en particulier depuis la « crise » des réfugiés de l’été 2015. En #Hongrie comme au #Danemark, les pouvoirs publics ont financé des publicités dans des quotidiens libanais et jordaniens. « Les Hongrois sont hospitaliers, mais les sanctions les plus sévères sont prises à l’encontre de ceux qui tentent d’entrer illégalement en Hongrie », lisait-on ici. « Le Parlement danois vient d’adopter un règlement visant à réduire de 50 % les prestations sociales pour les réfugiés nouvellement arrivés », apprenait-on là (2). En 2017, plusieurs #artistes ouest-africains dansaient et chantaient dans un #clip intitulé #Bul_Sank_sa_Bakane_bi (« Ne risque pas ta vie »). « L’immigration est bonne si elle est légale », « Reste en Afrique pour la développer, il n’y a pas mieux qu’ici », « Jeunesse, ce que tu ignores, c’est qu’à l’étranger ce n’est pas aussi facile que tu le crois », clamait cette chanson financée par le gouvernement italien dans le cadre d’une opération de l’#Organisation_internationale_pour_les_migrations (#OIM) baptisée « #Migrants_conscients » (3).

    « Pourquoi risquer votre vie ? »

    Ces campagnes qui ciblent des personnes n’ayant pas encore tenté de rejoindre l’Occident, mais susceptibles de vouloir le faire, insistent sur l’inutilité de l’immigration irrégulière (ceux qui s’y essaient seront systématiquement renvoyés chez eux) et sur les rigueurs de l’« État-providence ». Elles mettent en avant les dangers du voyage, la dureté des #conditions_de_vie dans les pays de transit et de destination, les #risques de traite, de trafic, d’exploitation ou tout simplement de mort. Point commun de ces mises en scène : ne pas évoquer les politiques restrictives qui rendent l’expérience migratoire toujours plus périlleuse. Elles cherchent plutôt à agir sur les #choix_individuels.

    Déployées dans les pays de départ et de transit, elles prolongent l’#externalisation du contrôle migratoire (4) et complètent la surveillance policière des frontières par des stratégies de #persuasion. L’objectif de #contrôle_migratoire disparaît sous une terminologie doucereuse : ces campagnes sont dites d’« #information » ou de « #sensibilisation », un vocabulaire qui les associe à des actions humanitaires, destinées à protéger les aspirants au départ. Voire à protéger les populations restées au pays des mensonges de leurs proches : une vidéo financée par la #Suisse (5) à destination du Cameroun enjoint ainsi de se méfier des récits des émigrés, supposés enjoliver l’expérience migratoire (« Ne croyez pas tout ce que vous entendez »).

    Initialement appuyées sur des médias traditionnels, ces actions se développent désormais via #Facebook, #Twitter ou #YouTube. En #Australie, le gouvernement a réalisé en 2014 une série de petits films traduits dans une quinzaine de langues parlées en Asie du Sud-Est, en Afghanistan et en Indonésie : « Pas question. Vous ne ferez pas de l’Australie votre chez-vous. » Des responsables militaires en treillis exposent d’un ton martial la politique de leur pays : « Si vous voyagez par bateau sans visa, vous ne pourrez jamais faire de l’Australie votre pays. Il n’y a pas d’exception. Ne croyez pas les mensonges des passeurs » (6).

    Les concepteurs ont sollicité YouTube afin que la plate-forme diffuse les #vidéos sous la forme de publicités précédant les contenus recherchés par des internautes susceptibles d’émigrer. Le recours aux #algorithmes permet en effet de cibler les utilisateurs dont le profil indique qu’ils parlent certaines langues, comme le farsi ou le vietnamien. De même, en privilégiant des vidéos populaires chez les #jeunes, YouTube facilite le #ciblage_démographique recherché. Par la suite, ces clips ont envahi les fils d’actualités Facebook de citoyens australiens issus de l’immigration, sélectionnés par l’#algorithme car ils parlent l’une des langues visées par la campagne. En s’adressant à ces personnes nées en Australie, les autorités espéraient qu’elles inviteraient elles-mêmes les ressortissants de leur pays d’origine à rester chez eux (7).

    C’est également vers Facebook que se tourne le gouvernement de la #Norvège en 2015. Accusé de passivité face à l’arrivée de réfugiés à la frontière russe, il finance la réalisation de deux vidéos, « Pourquoi risquer votre vie ? » et « Vous risquez d’être renvoyés » (8). Les utilisateurs du réseau social avaient initialement la possibilité de réagir, par le biais des traditionnels « j’aime » ou en postant des commentaires, ce qui aurait dû permettre une circulation horizontale, voire virale, de ces vidéos. Mais l’option fut suspendue après que la page eut été inondée de commentaires haineux issus de l’extrême droite, suscitant l’embarras de l’État.

    Ici encore, Facebook offre — ou plutôt, commercialise — la possibilité de cibler des jeunes hommes originaires d’Afghanistan, d’Éthiopie et d’Érythrée, dont le gouvernement norvégien considère qu’ils ne relèvent pas du droit d’asile. L’algorithme sélectionne en particulier les personnes situées hors de leur pays d’origine qui ont fait des recherches sur Internet dénotant leur intérêt pour l’Europe et la migration. Il s’agit de toucher des migrants en transit, qui hésitent quant à leur destination, et de les dissuader de choisir la Norvège. Les Syriens ne font pas partie des nationalités visées, afin de ne pas violer le droit d’asile. De même, le message mentionne explicitement que seuls les adultes seront refoulés, afin de ne pas contester le droit des enfants à être pris en charge.

    À plusieurs reprises, depuis 2015, les autorités belges ont elles aussi utilisé Facebook pour ce type d’initiatives (9). En 2018, des photographies de centres de détention et d’un jeune migrant menotté, assorties du slogan « Non à l’immigration illégale. Ne venez pas en #Belgique » (10), furent relayées à partir d’une page Facebook créée pour l’occasion par l’Office des étrangers. Cette page n’existait toutefois qu’en anglais, ce qui a fait croire à un faux (y compris parmi les forces de l’ordre), poussant le gouvernement belge à la supprimer au profit d’un site plus classique, humblement intitulé « Faits sur la Belgique » (11).

    Si de telles initiatives prolifèrent, c’est que les États européens sont engagés dans une course à la dissuasion qui les oppose les uns aux autres. Le 30 mai 2018, en France, M. Gérard Collomb, alors ministre de l’intérieur, affirmait lors d’une audition au Sénat que les migrants faisaient du « #benchmarking » pour identifier les pays les plus accueillants. Cette opinion semble partagée par ses pairs, et les États se montrent non seulement fermes, mais soucieux de le faire savoir.

    Le recours aux plates-formes de la Silicon Valley s’impose d’autant plus aisément que les autorités connaissent l’importance de ces outils dans le parcours des migrants. Une très large majorité d’entre eux sont en effet connectés. Ils dépendent de leur #téléphone_portable pour communiquer avec leur famille, se repérer grâce au #GPS, se faire comprendre par-delà les barrières linguistiques, conserver des photographies et des témoignages des atrocités qui justifient leur demande d’asile, appeler au secours en cas de naufrage ou de danger, ou encore retrouver des connaissances et des compatriotes dispersés.

    Un doute taraudait les autorités des États occidentaux : en connectant les individus et en leur facilitant l’accès à diverses sources d’information, les #technologies_numériques ne conféraient-elles pas une plus grande #autonomie aux migrants ? Ne facilitaient-elles pas en définitive l’immigration irrégulière (12) ? Dès lors, elles s’emploieraient à faire de ces mêmes outils la solution au problème : ils renseignent sur la #localisation et les caractéristiques des migrants, fournissant un canal privilégié de communication vers des publics ciblés.

    Systématiquement financées par les États occidentaux et impliquant de plus en plus souvent les géants du numérique, ces campagnes mobilisent aussi d’autres acteurs. Adopté sous les auspices de l’Organisation des Nations unies en 2018, le pacte mondial pour des migrations sûres, ordonnées et régulières (ou pacte de Marrakech) recommande ainsi de « mener des campagnes d’information multilingues et factuelles », d’organiser des « réunions de sensibilisation dans les pays d’origine », et ce notamment pour « mettre en lumière les risques qu’il y a à entreprendre une migration irrégulière pleine de dangers ». Le Haut-Commissariat pour les réfugiés (HCR) et l’OIM jouent donc le rôle d’intermédiaires privilégiés pour faciliter le financement de ces campagnes des États occidentaux en dehors de leur territoire.

    Efficacité douteuse

    Interviennent également des entreprises privées spécialisées dans le #marketing et la #communication. Installée à Hongkong, #Seefar développe des activités de « #communication_stratégique » à destination des migrants potentiels en Afghanistan ou en Afrique de l’Ouest. La société australienne #Put_It_Out_There_Pictures réalise pour sa part des vidéos de #propagande pour le compte de gouvernements occidentaux, comme le #téléfilm #Journey, qui met en scène des demandeurs d’asile tentant d’entrer clandestinement en Australie.

    Enfin, des associations humanitaires et d’aide au développement contribuent elles aussi à ces initiatives. Créée en 2015, d’abord pour secourir des migrants naufragés en Méditerranée, l’organisation non gouvernementale (ONG) #Proactiva_Open_Arms s’est lancée dans des projets de ce type en 2019 au Sénégal (13). Au sein des pays de départ, des pans entiers de la société se rallient à ces opérations : migrants de retour, journalistes, artistes, dirigeants associatifs et religieux… En Guinée, des artistes autrefois engagés pour l’ouverture des frontières militent à présent pour l’#immobilisation de leurs jeunes compatriotes (14).

    Le #discours_humanitaire consensuel qui argue de la nécessité de protéger les migrants en les informant facilite la coopération entre États, organisations internationales, secteurs privé et associatif. La plupart de ces acteurs sont pourtant étrangers au domaine du strict contrôle des frontières. Leur implication témoigne de l’extension du domaine de la lutte contre l’immigration irrégulière.

    Avec quelle #efficacité ? Il existe très peu d’évaluations de l’impact de ces campagnes. En 2019, une étude norvégienne (15) a analysé leurs effets sur des migrants en transit à Khartoum, avec des résultats peu concluants. Ils étaient peu nombreux à avoir eu connaissance des messages gouvernementaux et ils s’estimaient de toute manière suffisamment informés, y compris à propos des aspects les plus sombres de l’expérience migratoire. Compte tenu de la couverture médiatique des drames de l’immigration irrégulière, il paraît en effet vraisemblable que les migrants potentiels connaissent les risques… mais qu’ils migrent quand même.

    https://www.monde-diplomatique.fr/2021/03/PECOUD/62833
    #migrations #réfugiés #privatisation #Italie #humanitaire #soft_power

    –-

    Ajouté à la métaliste sur les #campagnes de #dissuasion à l’#émigration :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/763551

    ping @isskein @karine4 @_kg_ @rhoumour @etraces

  • The Death of Asylum and the Search for Alternatives

    March 2021 saw the announcement of the UK’s new post-Brexit asylum policy. This plan centres ‘criminal smuggling gangs’ who facilitate the cross border movement of people seeking asylum, particularly in this case, across the English Channel. It therefore distinguishes between two groups of people seeking asylum: those who travel themselves to places of potential sanctuary, and those who wait in a refugee camp near the place that they fled for the lottery ticket of UNHCR resettlement. Those who arrive ‘spontaneously’ will never be granted permanent leave to remain in the UK. Those in the privileged group of resettled refugees will gain indefinite leave to remain.

    Resettlement represents a tiny proportion of refugee reception globally. Of the 80 million displaced people globally at the end of 2019, 22,800 were resettled in 2020 and only 3,560 were resettled to the UK. Under the new plans, forms of resettlement are set to increase, which can only be welcomed. But of course, the expansion of resettlement will make no difference to people who are here, and arriving, every year. People who find themselves in a situation of persecution or displacement very rarely have knowledge of any particular national asylum system. Most learn the arbitrary details of access to work, welfare, and asylum itself upon arrival.

    In making smugglers the focus of asylum policy, the UK is inaugurating what Alison Mountz calls the death of asylum. There is of course little difference between people fleeing persecution who make the journey themselves to the UK, or those who wait in a camp with a small chance of resettlement. The two are often, in fact, connected, as men are more likely to go ahead in advance, making perilous journeys, in the hope that safe and legal options will then be opened up for vulnerable family members. And what makes these perilous journeys so dangerous? The lack of safe and legal routes.

    Britain, and other countries across Europe, North America and Australasia, have gone to huge efforts and massive expense in recent decades to close down access to the right to asylum. Examples of this include paying foreign powers to quarantine refugees outside of Europe, criminalising those who help refugees, and carrier sanctions. Carrier sanctions are fines for airlines or ferry companies if someone boards an aeroplane without appropriate travel documents. So you get the airlines to stop people boarding a plane to your country to claim asylum. In this way you don’t break international law, but you are certainly violating the spirit of it. If you’ve ever wondered why people pay 10 times the cost of a plane ticket to cross the Mediterranean or the Channel in a tiny boat, carrier sanctions are the reason.

    So government policy closes down safe and legal routes, forcing people to take more perilous journeys. These are not illegal journeys because under international law one cannot travel illegally if one is seeking asylum. Their only option becomes to pay smugglers for help in crossing borders. At this point criminalising smuggling becomes the focus of asylum policy. In this way, government policy creates the crisis which it then claims to solve. And this extends to people who are seeking asylum themselves.

    Arcane maritime laws have been deployed by the UK in order to criminalise irregular Channel crossers who breach sea defences, and therefore deny them sanctuary. Specifically, if one of the people aboard a given boat touches the tiller, oars, or steering device, they become liable to be arrested under anti-smuggling laws. In 2020, eight people were jailed on such grounds, facing sentences of up to two and a half years, as well as the subsequent threat of deportation. For these people, there are no safe and legal routes left.

    We know from extensive research on the subject, that poverty in a country does not lead to an increase in asylum applications elsewhere from that country. Things like wars, genocide and human rights abuses need to be present in order for nationals of a country to start seeking asylum abroad in any meaningful number. Why then, one might ask, is the UK so obsessed with preventing people who are fleeing wars, genocide and human rights abuses from gaining asylum here? On their own terms there is one central reason: their belief that most people seeking asylum today are not actually refugees, but economic migrants seeking to cheat the asylum system.

    This idea that people who seek asylum are largely ‘bogus’ began in the early 2000s. It came in response to a shift in the nationalities of people seeking asylum. During the Cold War there was little concern with the mix of motivations in relation to fleeing persecution or seeking a ‘better life’. But when people started to seek asylum from formerly colonised countries in the ‘Third World’ they began to be construed as ‘new asylum seekers’ and were assumed to be illegitimate. From David Blunkett’s time in the Home Office onwards, these ‘new asylum seekers’, primarily black and brown people fleeing countries in which refugee producing situations are occurring, asylum has been increasingly closed down.

    The UK government has tended to justify its highly restrictive asylum policies on the basis that it is open to abuse from bogus, cheating, young men. It then makes the lives of people who are awaiting a decision on their asylum application as difficult as possible on the basis that this will deter others. Forcing people who are here to live below the poverty line, then, is imagined to sever ‘pull factors’ for others who have not yet arrived. There is no evidence to support the idea that deterrence strategies work, they simply costs lives.

    Over the past two decades, as we have witnessed the slow death of asylum, it has become increasingly difficult to imagine alternatives. Organisations advocating for people seeking asylum have, with diminishing funds since 2010, tended to focus on challenging specific aspects of the system on legal grounds, such as how asylum support rates are calculated or whether indefinite detention is lawful.

    Scholars of migration studies, myself included, have written countless papers and books debunking the spurious claims made by the government to justify their policies, and criticising the underlying logics of the system. What we have failed to do is offer convincing alternatives. But with his new book, A Modern Migration Theory, Professor of Migration Studies Peo Hansen offers us an example of an alternative strategy. This is not a utopian proposal of open borders, this is the real experience of Sweden, a natural experiment with proven success.

    During 2015, large numbers of people were displaced as the Syrian civil war escalated. Most stayed within the region, with millions of people being hosted in Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon. A smaller proportion decided to travel onwards from these places to Europe. Because of the fortress like policies adopted by European countries, there were no safe and legal routes aboard aeroplanes or ferries. Horrified by the spontaneous arrival of people seeking sanctuary, most European countries refused to take part in burden sharing and so it fell to Germany and Sweden, the only countries that opened their doors in any meaningful way, to host the new arrivals.

    Hansen documents what happened next in Sweden. First, the Swedish state ended austerity in an emergency response to the challenge of hosting so many refugees. As part of this, and as a country that produces its own currency, the Swedish state distributed funds across the local authorities of the country to help them in receiving the refugees. And third, this money was spent not just on refugees, but on the infrastructure needed to support an increased population in a given area – on schools, hospitals, and housing. This is in the context of Sweden also having a welfare system which is extremely generous compared to Britain’s stripped back welfare regime.

    As in Britain, the Swedish government had up to this point spent some years fetishizing the ‘budget deficit’ and there was an assumption that spending so much money would worsen the fiscal position – that it would lead both to inflation, and a massive national deficit which must later be repaid. That this spending on refugees would cause deficits and hence necessitate borrowing, tax hikes and budget cuts was presented by politicians and the media in Sweden as a foregone conclusion. This foregone conclusion was then used as part of a narrative about refugees’ negative impact on the economy and welfare, and as the basis for closing Sweden’s doors to people seeking asylum in the future.

    And yet, the budget deficit never materialised: ‘Just as the finance minister had buried any hope of surpluses in the near future and repeated the mantra of the need to borrow to “finance” the refugees, a veritable tidal wave of tax revenue had already started to engulf Sweden’ (p.152). The economy grew and tax revenue surged in 2016 and 2017, so much that successive surpluses were created. In 2016 public consumption increased 3.6%, a figure not seen since the 1970s. Growth rates were 4% in 2016 and 2017. Refugees were filling labour shortages in understaffed sectors such as social care, where Sweden’s ageing population is in need of demographic renewal.

    Refugees disproportionately ended up in smaller, poorer, depopulating, rural municipalities who also received a disproportionately large cash injections from the central government. The arrival of refugees thus addressed the triple challenges of depopulation and population ageing; a continuous loss of local tax revenues, which forced cuts in services; and severe staff shortages and recruitment problems (e.g. in the care sector). Rather than responding with hostility, then, municipalities rightly saw the refugee influx as potentially solving these spiralling challenges.

    For two decades now we have been witnessing the slow death of asylum in the UK. Basing policy on prejudice rather than evidence, suspicion rather than generosity, burden rather than opportunity. Every change in the asylum system heralds new and innovative ways of circumventing human rights, detaining, deporting, impoverishing, and excluding. And none of this is cheap – it is not done for the economic benefit of the British population. It costs £15,000 to forcibly deport someone, it costs £95 per day to detain them, with £90 million spent each year on immigration detention. Vast sums of money are given to private companies every year to help in the work of denying people who are seeking sanctuary access to their right to asylum.

    The Swedish case offers a window into what happens when a different approach is taken. The benefit is not simply to refugees, but to the population as a whole. With an economy to rebuild after Covid and huge holes in the health and social care workforce, could we imagine an alternative in which Sweden offered inspiration to do things differently?

    https://discoversociety.org/2021/04/07/the-death-of-asylum-and-the-search-for-alternatives

    #asile #alternatives #migrations #alternative #réfugiés #catégorisation #tri #réinstallation #death_of_asylum #mort_de_l'asile #voies_légales #droit_d'asile #externalisation #passeurs #criminalisation_des_passeurs #UK #Angleterre #colonialisme #colonisation #pull-factors #pull_factors #push-pull_factors #facteurs_pull #dissuasion #Suède #déficit #économie #welfare_state #investissement #travail #impôts #Etat_providence #modèle_suédois

    ping @isskein @karine4

    –-

    ajouté au fil de discussion sur le lien entre économie et réfugiés/migrations :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/705790

    • A Modern Migration Theory. An Alternative Economic Approach to Failed EU Policy

      The widely accepted narrative that refugees admitted to the European Union constitute a fiscal burden is based on a seemingly neutral accounting exercise, in which migrants contribute less in tax than they receive in welfare assistance. A “fact” that justifies increasingly restrictive asylum policies. In this book Peo Hansen shows that this consensual cost-perspective on migration is built on a flawed economic conception of the orthodox “sound finance” doctrine prevalent in migration research and policy. By shifting perspective to examine migration through the macroeconomic lens offered by modern monetary theory, Hansen is able to demonstrate sound finance’s detrimental impact on migration policy and research, including its role in stoking the toxic debate on migration in the EU. Most importantly, Hansen’s undertaking offers the tools with which both migration research and migration policy could be modernized and put on a realistic footing.

      In addition to a searing analysis of EU migration policy and politics, Hansen also investigates the case of Sweden, the country that has received the most refugees in the EU in proportion to population. Hansen demonstrates how Sweden’s increased refugee spending in 2015–17 proved to be fiscally risk-free and how the injection of funds to cash-strapped and depopulating municipalities, which received refugees, boosted economic growth and investment in welfare. Spending on refugees became a way of rediscovering the viability of welfare for all. Given that the Swedish approach to the 2015 refugee crisis has since been discarded and deemed fiscally unsustainable, Hansen’s aim is to reveal its positive effects and its applicability as a model for the EU as a whole.

      https://cup.columbia.edu/book/a-modern-migration-theory/9781788210553
      #livre #Peo_Hansen

  • The big wall


    https://thebigwall.org/en

    An ActionAid investigation into how Italy tried to stop migration from Africa, using EU funds, and how much money it spent.

    There are satellites, drones, ships, cooperation projects, police posts, repatriation flights, training centers. They are the bricks of an invisible but tangible and often violent wall. Erected starting in 2015 onwards, thanks to over one billion euros of public money. With one goal: to eliminate those movements by sea, from North Africa to Italy, which in 2015 caused an outcry over a “refugee crisis”. Here we tell you about the (fragile) foundations and the (dramatic) impacts of this project. Which must be changed, urgently.

    –---

    Ready, Set, Go

    Imagine a board game, Risk style. The board is a huge geographical map, which descends south from Italy, including the Mediterranean Sea and North Africa and almost reaching the equator, in Cameroon, South Sudan, Rwanda. Places we know little about and read rarely about.

    Each player distributes activity cards and objects between countries and along borders. In Ethiopia there is a camera crew shooting TV series called ‘Miraj’ [mirage], which recounts the misadventures of naive youth who rely on shady characters to reach Europe. There is military equipment, distributed almost everywhere: off-road vehicles for the Tunisian border police, ambulances and tank trucks for the army in Niger, patrol boats for Libya, surveillance drones taking off from Sicily.

    There is technology: satellite systems on ships in the Mediterranean, software for recording fingerprints in Egypt, laptops for the Nigerian police. And still: coming and going of flights between Libya and Nigeria, Guinea, Gambia. Maritime coordination centers, police posts in the middle of the Sahara, job orientation offices in Tunisia or Ethiopia, clinics in Uganda, facilities for minors in Eritrea, and refugee camps in Sudan.

    Hold your breath for a moment longer, because we still haven’t mentioned the training courses. And there are many: to produce yogurt in Ivory Coast, open a farm in Senegal or a beauty salon in Nigeria, to learn about the rights of refugees, or how to use a radar station.

    Crazed pawns, overlapping cards and unclear rules. Except for one: from these African countries, more than 25 of them, not one person should make it to Italy. There is only one exception allowed: leaving with a visa. Embassy officials, however, have precise instructions: anyone who doesn’t have something to return to should not be accepted. Relationships, family, and friends don’t count, but only incomes, properties, businesses, and titles do.

    For a young professional, a worker, a student, an activist, anyone looking for safety, future and adventure beyond the borders of the continent, for people like me writing and perhaps like you reading, the only allies become the facilitators, those who Europe calls traffickers and who, from friends, can turn into worst enemies.

    We called it The Big Wall. It could be one of those strategy games that keeps going throughout the night, for fans of geopolitics, conflicts, finance. But this is real life, and it’s the result of years of investments, experiments, documents and meetings. At first disorderly, sporadic, then systematized and increased since 2015, when United Nations agencies, echoed by the international media, sounded an alarm: there is a migrant crisis happening and Europe must intervene. Immediately.

    Italy was at the forefront, and all those agreements, projects, and programs from previous years suddenly converged and multiplied, becoming bricks of a wall that, from an increasingly militarized Mediterranean, moved south, to the travelers’ countries of origin.

    The basic idea, which bounced around chancelleries and European institutions, was to use multiple tools: development cooperation, support for security forces, on-site protection of refugees, repatriation, information campaigns on the risks of irregular migration. This, in the language of Brussels, was a “comprehensive approach”.

    We talked to some of the protagonists of this story — those who built the wall, who tried to jump it, and who would like to demolish it — and we looked through thousands of pages of reports, minutes, resolutions, decrees, calls for tenders, contracts, newspaper articles, research, to understand how much money Italy has spent, where, and what impacts it has had. Months of work to discover not only that this wall has dramatic consequences, but that the European – and Italian – approach to international migration stems from erroneous premises, from an emergency stance that has disastrous results for everyone, including European citizens.
    Libya: the tip of the iceberg

    It was the start of the 2017/2018 academic year and Omer Shatz, professor of international law, offered his Sciences Po students the opportunity to work alongside him on the preparation of a dossier. For the students of the faculty, this was nothing new. In the classrooms of the austere building on the Rive Gauche of Paris, which European and African heads of state have passed though, not least Emmanuel Macron, it’s normal to work on real life materials: peace agreements in Colombia, trials against dictators and foreign fighters. Those who walk on those marble floors already know that they will be able to speak with confidence in circles that matter, in politics as well as diplomacy.

    Shatz, who as a criminal lawyer in Israel is familiar with abuses and rights violations, launched his students a new challenge: to bring Europe to the International Criminal Court for the first time. “Since it was created, the court has only condemned African citizens – dictators, militia leaders – but showing European responsibility was urgent,” he explains.

    One year after first proposing the plan, Shatz sent an envelope to the Court’s headquarters, in the Dutch town of The Hague. With his colleague Juan Branco and eight of his students he recounted, in 245 pages, cases of “widespread and systematic attack against the civilian population”, linked to “crimes against humanity consciously committed by European actors, in the central Mediterranean and in Libya, in line with Italian and European Union policies”.

    The civilian population to which they refer comprises migrants and refugees, swallowed by the waves or intercepted in the central Mediterranean and brought back to shore by Libyan assets, to be placed in a seemingly endless cycle of detention. Among them are the 13.000 dead recorded since 2015, in the stretch of sea between North Africa and Italy, out of 523.000 people who survived the crossing, but also the many African and Asian citizens, who are rarely counted, who were tortured in Libya and died in any of the dozens of detention centers for foreigners, often run by militias.

    “At first we thought that the EU and Italy were outsourcing dirty work to Libya to block people, which in jargon is called ‘aiding and abetting’ in the commission of a crime, then we realized that the Europeans were actually the conductors of these operations, while the Libyans performed”, says Shatz, who, at the end of 2020, was preparing a second document for the International Criminal Court to include more names, those of the “anonymous officials of the European and Italian bureaucracy who participated in this criminal enterprise”, which was centered around the “reinvention of the Libyan Coast Guard, conceived by Italian actors”.

    Identifying heads of department, office directors, and institution executives in democratic countries as alleged criminals might seem excessive. For Shatz, however, “this is the first time, after the Nuremberg trials, after Eichmann, that Europe has committed crimes of this magnitude, outside of an armed conflict”. The court, which routinely rejects at least 95 percent of the cases presented, did not do so with Shatz and his students’ case. “Encouraging news, but that does not mean that the start of proceedings is around the corner”, explains the lawyer.

    At the basis of the alleged crimes, he continues, are “regulations, memoranda of understanding, maritime cooperation, detention centers, patrols and drones” created and financed by the European Union and Italy. Here Shatz is speaking about the Memorandum of Understanding between Italy and Libya to “reduce the flow of illegal migrants”, as the text of the document states. An objective to be achieved through training and support for the two maritime patrol forces of the very fragile Libyan national unity government, by “adapting” the existing detention centers, and supporting local development initiatives.

    Signed in Rome on February 2, 2017 and in force until 2023, the text is grafted onto the Treaty of Friendship, Partnership and Cooperation signed by Silvio Berlusconi and Muammar Gaddafi in 2008, but is tied to a specific budget: that of the so-called Africa Fund, established in 2016 as the “Fund for extraordinary interventions to relaunch dialogue and cooperation with African countries of priority importance for migration routes” and extended in 2020 — as the Migration Fund — to non-African countries too.

    310 million euros were allocated in total between the end of 2016 and November 2020, and 252 of those were disbursed, according to our reconstruction.

    A multiplication of tools and funds that, explains Mario Giro, “was born after the summit between the European Union and African leaders in Malta, in November 2015”. According to the former undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, from 2013, and Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs between 2016 and 2018, that summit in Malta “sanctioned the triumph of a European obsession, that of reducing migration from Africa at all costs: in exchange of this containment, there was a willingness to spend, invest”. For Giro, the one in Malta was an “attempt to come together, but not a real partnership”.

    Libya, where more than 90 percent of those attempting to cross the central Mediterranean departed from in those years, was the heart of a project in which Italian funds and interests support and integrate with programs by the European Union and other member states. It was an all-European dialogue, from which powerful Africans — political leaders but also policemen, militiamen, and the traffickers themselves — tried to obtain something: legitimacy, funds, equipment.

    Fragmented and torn apart by a decade-long conflict, Libya was however not alone. In October 2015, just before the handshakes and the usual photographs at the Malta meeting, the European Commission established an Emergency Trust Fund to “address the root causes of migration in Africa”.

    To do so, as Dutch researcher Thomas Spijkerboer will reconstruct years later, the EU executive declared a state of emergency in the 26 African countries that benefit from the Fund, thus justifying the choice to circumvent European competition rules in favor of direct award procedures. However “it’s implausible – Spijkerboeker will go on to argue – that there is a crisis in all 26 African countries where the Trust Fund operates through the duration of the Trust Fund”, now extended until the end of 2021.

    However, the imperative, as an advisor to the Budget Commission of the European Parliament explains, was to act immediately: “not within a few weeks, but days, hours“.

    Faced with a Libya still ineffective at stopping flows to the north, it was in fact necessary to intervene further south, traveling backwards along the routes that converge from dozens of African countries and go towards Tripolitania. And — like dominoes in reverse — raising borders and convincing, or forcing, potential travelers to stop in their countries of origin or in others along the way, before they arrived on the shores of the Mediterranean.

    For the first time since decolonization, human mobility in Africa became the keystone of Italian policies on the continent, so much so that analysts began speaking of migration diplomacy. Factors such as the number of migrants leaving from a given country and the number of border posts or repatriations all became part of the political game, on the same level as profits from oil extraction, promises of investment, arms sales, or trade agreements.

    Comprising projects, funds, and programs, this migration diplomacy comes at a cost. For the period between January 2015 and November 2020, we tracked down 317 funding lines managed by Italy with its own funds and partially co-financed by the European Union. A total of 1.337 billion euros, spent over five years and destined to eight different items of expenditure. Here Libya is in first place, but it is not alone.

    A long story, in short

    For simplicity’s sake, we can say that it all started in the hot summer of 2002, with an almost surrealist lightning war over a barren rock on the edge of the Mediterranean: the Isla de Persejil, the island of parsley. A little island in the Strait of Gibraltar, disputed for decades between Morocco and Spain, which had its ephemeral moment of glory when in July of that year the Moroccan monarchy sent six soldiers, some tents and a flag. Jose-Maria Aznar’s government quickly responded with a reconquista to the sound of fighter-bombers, frigates, and helicopters.

    Peace was signed only a few weeks later and the island went back to being a land of shepherds and military patrols. Which from then on, however, were joint ones.

    “There was talk of combating drug trafficking and illegal fishing, but the reality was different: these were the first anti-immigration operations co-managed by Spanish and Moroccan soldiers”, explains Sebastian Cobarrubias, professor of geography at the University of Zaragoza. The model, he says, was the one of Franco-Spanish counter-terrorism operations in the Basque Country, exported from the Pyrenees to the sea border.

    A process of externalization of Spanish and European migration policy was born following those events in 2002, and culminating years later with the crisis de los cayucos, the pirogue crisis: the arrival of tens of thousands of people – 31,000 in 2006 alone – in the Canary Islands, following extremely dangerous crossings from Senegal, Mauritania and Morocco.

    In close dialogue with the European Commission, which saw the Spanish border as the most porous one of the fragile Schengen area, the government of José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero reacted quickly. “Within a few months, cooperation and repatriation agreements were signed with nine African countries,” says Cobarrubias, who fought for years, with little success, to obtain the texts of the agreements.

    The events of the late 2000s look terribly similar to what Italy will try to implement a decade later with its Mediterranean neighbors, Libya first of all. So much so that in 2016 it was the Spanish Minister of the Interior himself, Jorge Fernández Díaz, who recalled that “the Spanish one is a European management model, reproducible in other contexts”. A vision confirmed by the European Commission officials with whom we spoke.

    At the heart of the Spanish strategy, which over a few short years led to a drastic decrease of arrivals by sea, was the opening of new diplomatic offices in Africa, the launch of local development projects, and above all the support given to the security forces of partner countries.

    Cobarrubias recounts at least four characteristic elements of the Madrid approach: the construction of new patrol forces “such as the Mauritanian Coast Guard, which did not exist and was created by Spain thanks to European funds, with the support of the newly created Frontex agency”; direct and indirect support for detention centers, such as the infamous ‘Guantanamito’, or little Guantanamo, denounced by civil society organizations in Mauritania; the real-time collection of border data and information, carried out by the SIVE satellite system, a prototype of Eurosur, an incredibly expensive intelligence center on the EU’s external borders launched in 2013, based on drones, satellites, airplanes, and sensors; and finally, the strategy of working backwards along migration routes, to seal borders, from the sea to the Sahara desert, and investing locally with development and governance programs, which Spain did during the two phases of the so-called Plan Africa, between 2006 and 2012.

    Replace “Spain” with “Italy”, and “Mauritania” with “Libya”, and you’ll have an idea of what happened years later, in an attempt to seal another European border.

    The main legacy of the Spanish model, according to the Italian sociologist Lorenzo Gabrielli, however, is the negative conditionality, which is the fact of conditioning the disbursement of these loans – for security forces, ministries, trade agreements – at the level of the African partners’ cooperation in the management of migration, constantly threatening to reduce investments if there are not enough repatriations being carried out, or if controls and pushbacks fail. An idea that is reminiscent both of the enlargement process of the European Union, with all the access restrictions placed on candidate countries, and of the Schengen Treaty, the attempt to break down internal European borders, which, as a consequence, created the need to protect a new common border, the external one.
    La externalización europea del control migratorio: ¿La acción española como modelo? Read more

    At the end of 2015, when almost 150,000 people had reached the Italian coast and over 850,000 had crossed Turkey and the Balkans to enter the European Union, the story of the maritime migration to Spain had almost faded from memory.

    But something remained of it: a management model. Based, once again, on an idea of crisis.

    “We tried to apply it to post-Gaddafi Libya – explains Stefano Manservisi, who over the past decade has chaired two key departments for migration policies in the EU Commission, Home Affairs and Development Cooperation – but in 2013 we soon realized that things had blown up, that that there was no government to talk to: the whole strategy had to be reformulated”.

    Going backwards, through routes and processes

    The six-month presidency of the European Council, in 2014, was the perfect opportunity for Italy.

    In November of that year, Matteo Renzi’s government hosted a conference in Rome to launch the Khartoum Process, the brand new initiative for the migration route between the EU and the Horn of Africa, modeled on the Rabat Process, born in 2006, at the apex of the crisis de los cayucos, after pressure from Spain. It’s a regional cooperation platform between EU countries and nine African countries, based on the exchange of information and coordination between governments, to manage migration.
    Il processo di Khartoum: l’Italia e l’Europa contro le migrazioni Read more

    Warning: if you start to find terms such as ‘process’ and ‘coordination platform’ nebulous, don’t worry. The backbone of European policies is made of these structures: meetings, committees, negotiating tables with unattractive names, whose roles elude most of us. It’s a tendency towards the multiplication of dialogue and decision spaces, that the migration policies of recent years have, if possible, accentuated, in the name of flexibility, of being ready for any eventuality. Of continuous crisis.

    Let’s go back to that inter-ministerial meeting in Rome that gave life to the Khartoum Process and in which Libya, where the civil war had resumed violently a few months earlier, was not present.

    Italy thus began looking beyond Libya, to the so-called countries of origin and transit. Such as Ethiopia, a historic beneficiary of Italian development cooperation, and Sudan. Indeed, both nations host refugees from Eritrea and Somalia, two of the main countries of origin of those who cross the central Mediterranean between 2013 and 2015. Improving their living conditions was urgent, to prevent them from traveling again, from dreaming of Europe. In Niger, on the other hand, which is an access corridor to Libya for those traveling from countries such as Nigeria, Gambia, Senegal, and Mali, Italy co-financed a study for a new law against migrant smuggling, then adopted in 2015, which became the cornerstone of a radical attempt to reduce movement across the Sahara desert, which you will read about later.

    A year later, with the Malta summit and the birth of the EU Trust Fund for Africa, Italy was therefore ready to act. With a 123 million euro contribution, allocated from 2017 through the Africa Fund and the Migration Fund, Italy became the second donor country, and one of the most active in trying to manage those over 4 billion euros allocated for five years. [If you are curious about the financing mechanisms of the Trust Fund, read here: https://thebigwall.org/en/trust-fund/].

    Through the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (AICS), born in 2014 as an operational branch of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Italy immediately made itself available to manage European Fund projects, and one idea seemed to be the driving one: using classic development programs, but implemented in record time, to offer on-site alternatives to young people eager to leave, while improving access to basic services.

    Local development, therefore, became the intervention to address the so-called root causes of migration. For the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the newborn AICS, it seemed a winning approach. Unsurprisingly, the first project approved through the Trust Fund for Africa was managed by the Italian agency in Ethiopia.

    “Stemming irregular migration in Northern and Central Ethiopia” received 19.8 million euros in funding, a rare sum for local development interventions. The goal was to create job opportunities and open career guidance centers for young people in four Ethiopian regions. Or at least that’s how it seemed. In the first place, among the objectives listed in the project sheet, there is in fact another one: to reduce irregular migration.

    In the logical matrix of the project, which insiders know is the presentation – through data, indicators and figures – of the expected results, there is no indicator that appears next to the “reduction of irregular migration” objective. There is no way, it’s implicitly admitted, to verify that that goal has been achieved. That the young person trained to start a micro-enterprise in the Wollo area, for example, is one less migrant.

    Bizarre, not to mention wrong. But indicative of the problems of an approach of which, an official of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs explains to us, “Italy had made itself the spokesperson in Europe”.

    “The mantra was that more development would stop migration, and at a certain point that worked for everyone: for AICS, which justified its funds in the face of political landscape that was scared by the issue of landings, and for many NGOs, which immediately understood that migrations were the parsley to be sprinkled on the funding requests that were presented”, explains the official, who, like so many in this story, prefers to remain anonymous.

    This idea of the root causes was reproduced, as in an echo chamber, “without programmatic documents, without guidelines, but on the wave of a vague idea of political consensus around the goal of containing migration”, he adds. This makes it almost impossible to talk about, so much so that a proposal for new guidelines on immigration and development, drawn up during 2020 by AICS, was set aside for months.

    Indeed, if someone were to say, as evidenced by scholars such as Michael Clemens, that development can also increase migration, and that migration itself is a source of development, the whole ‘root causes’ idea would collapse and the already tight cooperation budgets would risk being cut, in the name of the same absolute imperative as always: reducing arrivals to Italy and Europe.

    Maintaining a vague, costly and unverifiable approach is equally damaging.

    Bram Frouws, director of the Mixed Migration Center, a think-tank that studies international mobility, points out, for example, how the ‘root cause’ approach arises from a vision of migration as a problem to be eradicated rather than managed, and that paradoxically, the definition of these deep causes always remains superficial. In fact, there is never talk of how international fishing agreements damage local communities, nor of land grabbing by speculators, major construction work, or corruption and arms sales. There is only talk of generic economic vulnerability, of a country’s lack of stability. An almost abstract phenomenon, in which European actors are exempt from any responsibility.

    There is another problem: in the name of the fight against irregular migration, interventions have shifted from poorer and truly vulnerable countries and populations to regions with ‘high migratory rates’, a term repeated in dozens of project descriptions funded over the past few years, distorting one of the cardinal principles of development aid, codified in regulations and agreements: that of responding to the most urgent needs of a given population, and of not imposing external priorities, even more so if it is countries considered richer are the ones doing it.

    The Nigerien experiment

    While Ethiopia and Sudan absorb the most substantial share of funds destined to tackle the root causes of migration — respectively 47 and 32 million euros out of a total expenditure of 195 million euros — Niger, which for years has been contending for the podium of least developed country on the planet with Central African Republic according to the United Nations Human Development Index — benefits from just over 10 million euros.

    Here in fact it’s more urgent, for Italy and the EU, to intervene on border control rather than root causes, to stop the flow of people that cross the country until they arrive in Agadez, to then disappear in the Sahara and emerge, days later — if all goes well — in southern Libya. In 2016, the International Organization for Migration counted nearly 300,000 people passing through a single checkpoint along the road to Libya. The figure bounced between the offices of the European Commission, and from there to the Farnesina, the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs: faced with an uncontrollable Libya, intervening in Niger became a priority.

    Italy did it in great style, even before opening an embassy in the country, in February 2017: with a contribution to the state budget of Niger of 50 million euros, part of the Africa Fund, included as part of a maxi-program managed by the EU in the country and paid out in several installments.

    While the project documents list a number of conditions for the continuation of the funding, including increased monitoring along the routes to Libya and the adoption of regulations and strategies for border control, some local and European officials with whom we have spoken think that the assessments were made with one eye closed: the important thing was in fact to provide those funds to be spent in a country that for Italy, until then, had been synonymous only with tourism in the Sahara dunes and development in rural areas.

    Having become a priority in the New Partnership Framework on Migration, yet another EU operational program, launched in 2016, Niger seemed thus exempt from controls on the management of funds to which beneficiaries of European funds are normally subject to.

    “Our control mechanisms, the Court of Auditors, the Parliament and the anti-corruption Authority, do not work, and yet the European partners have injected millions of euros into state coffers, without imposing transparency mechanisms”, reports then Ali Idrissa Nani , president of the Réseau des Organizations pour la Transparence et l’Analyse du Budget (ROTAB), a network of associations that seeks to monitor state spending in Niger.

    “It leaves me embittered, but for some years we we’ve had the impression that civil liberties, human rights, and participation are no longer a European priority“, continues Nani, who —- at the end of 2020 — has just filed a complaint with the Court of Niamey, to ask the Prosecutor to open an investigation into the possible disappearance of at least 120 million euros in funds from the Ministry of Defense, a Pandora’s box uncovered by local and international journalists.

    For Nani, who like other Nigerien activists spent most of 2018 in prison for encouraging demonstrations against high living costs, this explosion of European and Italian cooperation didn’t do the country any good, and in fact favoured authoritarian tendencies, and limited even more the independence of the judiciary.

    For their part, the Nigerien rulers have more than others seized the opportunity offered by European donors to obtain legitimacy and support. Right after the Valletta summit, they were the first to present an action plan to reduce migration to Libya, which they abruptly implemented in mid-2016, applying the anti-trafficking law whose preliminary study was financed by Italy, with the aim of emptying the city of #Agadez of migrants from other countries.

    The transport of people to the Libyan border, an activity that until that point happened in the light of day and was sanctioned at least informally by the local authorities, thus became illegal from one day to the next. Hundreds of drivers, intermediaries, and facilitators were arrested, and an entire economy crashed

    But did the movement of people really decrease? Almost impossible to tell. The only data available are those of the International Organization for Migration, which continues to record the number of transits at certain police posts. But drivers and foreign travelers no longer pass through them, fearing they will be arrested or stopped. Routes and journeys, as always happens, are remodeled, only to reappear elsewhere. Over the border with Chad, or in Algeria, or in a risky zigzagging of small tracks, to avoid patrols.

    For Hamidou Manou Nabara, a Nigerien sociologist and researcher, the problems with this type of cooperation are manifold.

    On the one hand, it restricted the free movement guaranteed within the Economic Community of West African States, a sort of ‘Schengen area’ between 15 countries in the region, making half of Niger, from Agadez to the north, a no-go areas for foreign citizens, even though they still had the right to move throughout the national territory.

    Finally, those traveling north were made even more vulnerable. “The control of borders and migratory movements was justified on humanitarian grounds, to contrast human trafficking, but in reality very few victims of trafficking were ever identified: the center of this cooperation is repression”, explains Nabara.

    Increasing controls, through military and police operations, actually exposes travelers to greater violations of human rights, both by state agents and passeurs, making the Sahara crossings longer and riskier.

    The fight against human trafficking, a slogan repeated by European and African leaders and a central expenditure item of the Italian intervention between Africa and the Mediterranean — 142 million euros in five years —- actually risks having the opposite effect. Because a trafiicker’s bread and butter, in addition to people’s desire to travel, is closed borders and denied visas.

    A reinvented frontier

    Galvanized by the activism of the European Commission after the launch of the Trust Fund but under pressure internally, faced with a discourse on migration that seemed to invade every public space — from the front pages of newspapers to television talk-shows — and unable to agree on how to manage migration within the Schengen area, European rulers thus found an agreement outside the continent: to add more bricks to that wall that must reduce movements through the Mediterranean.

    Between 2015 and 2016, Italian, Dutch, German, French and European Union ministers, presidents and senior officials travel relentlessly between countries considered priorities for migration, and increasingly for security, and invite their colleagues to the European capitals. A coming and going of flights to Niger, Mali, Burkina Faso, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Sudan, Tunisia, Senegal, Chad, Guinea, to make agreements, negotiate.

    “Niamey had become a crossroads for European diplomats”, remembers Ali Idrissa Nani, “but few understood the reasons”.

    However, unlike the border with Turkey, where the agreement signed with the EU at the beginning of 2016 in no time reduced the arrival of Syrian, Afghan, and Iraqi citizens in Greece, the continent’s other ‘hot’ border, promises of speed and effectiveness by the Trust Fund for Africa did not seem to materialize. Departures from Libya, in particular, remained constant. And in the meantime, in the upcoming election in a divided Italy, the issue of migration seemed to be tipping the balance, capable of shifting votes and alliances.

    It is at that point that the Italian Ministry of the Interior, newly led by Marco Minniti, put its foot on the accelerator. The Viminale, the Italian Ministry of the Interior, became the orchestrator of a new intervention plan, refined between Rome and Brussels, with German support, which went back to focusing everything on Libya and on that stretch of sea that separates it from Italy.

    “In those months the phones were hot, everyone was looking for Marco“, says an official of the Interior Ministry, who admits that “the Ministry of the Interior had snatched the Libyan dossier from Foreign Affairs, but only because up until then the Foreign Ministry hadn’t obtained anything” .

    Minniti’s first move was the signing of the new Memorandum with Libya, which gave way to a tripartite plan.

    At the top of the agenda was the creation of a maritime interception device for boats departing from the Libyan coast, through the reconstruction of the Coast Guard and the General Administration for Coastal Security (GACS), the two patrol forces belonging to the Ministry of Defense and that of the Interior, and the establishment of a rescue coordination center, prerequisites for Libya to declare to the International Maritime Organization that it had a Search and Rescue Area, so that the Italian Coast Guard could ask Libyan colleagues to intervene if there were boats in trouble.

    Accompanying this work in Libya is a jungle of Italian and EU missions, surveillance systems and military operations — from the European Frontex, Eunavfor Med and Eubam Libya, to the Italian military mission “Safe Waters” — equipped with drones, planes, patrol boats, whose task is to monitor the Libyan Sea, which is increasingly emptied by the European humanitarian ships that started operating in 2014 (whose maneuvering spaces are in the meantime reduced to the bone due to various strategies) to support Libyan interception operations.

    The second point of the ‘Minniti agenda’ was to progressively empty Libya of migrants and refugees, so that an escape by sea would become increasingly difficult. Between 2017 and 2020, the Libyan assets, which are in large part composed of patrol boats donated by Italy, intercepted and returned to shore about 56,000 people according to data released by UN agencies. The Italian-European plan envisages two solutions: for economic migrants, the return to the country of origin; for refugees, the possibility of obtaining protection.

    There is one part of this plan that worked better, at least in terms of European wishes: repatriation, presented as ‘assisted voluntary return’. This vision was propelled by images, released in October 2017 by CNN as part of a report on the abuse of foreigners in Libya, of what appears to be a slave auction. The images reopened the unhealed wounds of the slave trade through Atlantic and Sahara, and helped the creation of a Joint Initiative between the International Organization for Migration, the European Union, and the African Union, aimed at returning and reintegrating people in the countries of origin.

    Part of the Italian funding for IOM was injected into this complex system of repatriation by air, from Tripoli to more than 20 countries, which has contributed to the repatriation of 87,000 people over three years. 33,000 from Libya, and 37,000 from Niger.

    A similar program for refugees, which envisages transit through other African countries (Niger and Rwanda gave their availability) and from there resettlement to Europe or North America, recorded much lower numbers: 3,300 evacuations between the end of 2017 and the end of 2020. For the 47,000 people registered as refugees in Libya, leaving the country without returning to their home country, to the starting point, is almost impossible.

    Finally, there is a third, lesser-known point of the Italian plan: even in Libya, Italy wants to intervene on the root causes of migration, or rather on the economies linked to the transit and smuggling of migrants. The scheme is simple: support basic services and local authorities in migrant transit areas, in exchange for this transit being controlled and reduced. The transit of people brings with it the circulation of currency, a more valuable asset than usual in a country at war, and this above all in the south of Libya, in the immense Saharan region of Fezzan, the gateway to the country, bordering Algeria, Niger, and Chad and almost inaccessible to international humanitarian agencies.

    A game in which intelligence plays central role (as also revealed by the journalist Lorenzo D’Agostino on Foreign Policy), as indeed it did in another negotiation and exchange of money: those 5 million euros destined — according to various journalistic reconstructions — to a Sabratha militia, the Anas Al-Dabbashi Brigade, to stop departures from the coastal city.

    A year later, its leader, Ahmed Al-Dabbashi, will be sanctioned by the UN Security Council, as leader for criminal activities related to human trafficking.

    The one built in record time by the ministry led by Marco Minniti is therefore a complicated and expensive puzzle. To finance it, there are above all the Trust Fund for Africa of the EU, and the Italian Africa Fund, initially headed only by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and unpacked among several ministries for the occasion, but also the Internal Security Fund of the EU, which funds military equipment for all Italian security forces, as well as funds and activities from the Ministry of Defense.

    A significant part of those 666 million euros dedicated to border control, but also of funds to support governance and fight traffickers, converges and enters this plan: a machine that was built too quickly, among whose wheels human rights and Libya’s peace process are sacrificed.

    “We were looking for an immediate result and we lost sight of the big picture, sacrificing peace on the altar of the fight against migration, when Libya was in pieces, in the hands of militias who were holding us hostage”. This is how former Deputy Minister Mario Giro describes the troubled handling of the Libyan dossier.

    For Marwa Mohamed, a Libyan activist, all these funds and interventions were “provided without any real clause of respect for human rights, and have fragmented the country even more, because they were intercepted by the militias, which are the same ones that manage both the smuggling of migrants that detention centers, such as that of Abd el-Rahman al-Milad, known as ‘al-Bija’ ”.

    Projects aimed at Libyan municipalities, included in the interventions on the root causes of migration — such as the whole detention system, invigorated by the introduction of people intercepted at sea (and ‘improved’ through millions of euros of Italian funds) — offer legitimacy, when they do not finance it directly, to the ramified and violent system of local powers that the German political scientist Wolfram Lacher defines as the ‘Tripoli militia cartel‘. [for more details on the many Italian funds in Libya, read here].
    Fondi italiani in Libia Read more

    “Bringing migrants back to shore, perpetuating a detention system, does not only mean subjecting people to new abuses, but also enriching the militias, fueling the conflict”, continues Mohamed, who is now based in London, where she is a spokesman of the Libyan Lawyers for Justice organization.

    The last few years of Italian cooperation, she argues, have been “a sequence of lost opportunities”. And to those who tell you — Italian and European officials especially — that reforming justice, putting an end to that absolute impunity that strengthens the militias, is too difficult, Mohamed replies without hesitation: “to sign the Memorandum of Understanding, the authorities contacted the militias close to the Tripoli government one by one and in the meantime built a non-existent structure from scratch, the Libyan Coast Guard: and you’re telling me that you can’t put the judicial system back on its feet and protect refugees? ”

    The only thing that mattered, however, in that summer of 2017, were the numbers. Which, for the first time since 2013, were falling again, and quickly. In the month of August there were 80 percent fewer landings than the year before. And so it would be for the following months and years.

    “Since then, we have continued to allocate, renewing programs and projects, without asking for any guarantee in exchange for the treatment of migrants”, explains Matteo De Bellis, researcher at Amnesty International, remembering that the Italian promise to modify the Memorandum of Understanding, introducing clauses of protection, has been on stop since the controversial renewal of the document, in February 2020.

    Repatriations, evacuations, promises

    We are 1500 kilometers of road, and sand, south of Tripoli. Here Salah* spends his days escaping a merciless sun. The last three years of the life of the thirty-year-old Sudanese have not offered much else and now, like many fellow sufferers, he does not hide his fatigue.

    We are in a camp 15 kilometers from Agadez, in Niger, in the middle of the Sahara desert, where Salah lives with a thousand people, mostly Sudanese from the Darfur region, the epicenter of one of the most dramatic and lethal conflicts of recent decades.

    Like almost all the inhabitants of this temporary Saharan settlement, managed by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and — at the end of 2020 — undergoing rehabilitation also thanks to Italian funds, he passed through Libya and since 2017, after three years of interceptions at sea and detention, he’s been desperately searching for a way out, for a future.

    Salah fled Darfur in 2016, after receiving threats from pro-government armed militias, and reached Tripoli after a series of vicissitudes and violence. In late spring 2017, he sailed from nearby Zawiya with 115 other people. They were intercepted, brought back to shore and imprisoned in a detention center, formally headed by the government but in fact controlled by the Al-Nasr militia, linked to the trafficker Al-Bija.

    “They beat us everywhere, for days, raped some women in front of us, and asked everyone to call families to get money sent,” Salah recalls. Months later, after paying some money and escaping, he crossed the Sahara again, up to Agadez. UNHCR had just opened a facility and from there, as rumour had it, you could ask to be resettled to Europe.

    Faced with sealed maritime borders, and after experiencing torture and abuse, that faint hope set in motion almost two thousand people, who, hoping to reach Italy, found themselves on the edges of the Sahara, along what many, by virtue of investments and negotiations, had started to call the ‘new European frontier’.

    Three years later, a little over a thousand people remain of that initial group. Only a few dozen of them had access to resettlement, while many returned to Libya, and to all of its abuses.

    Something similar is also happening in Tunisia, where since 2017, the number of migrants and refugees entering the country has increased. They are fleeing by land and sometimes by sea from Libya, going to crowd UN structures. Then, faced with a lack of real prospects, they return to Libya.

    For Romdhane Ben Amor, spokesman for the Tunisian Federation for Economic and Social Rights, “in Tunisia European partners have financed a non-reception: overcrowded centers in unworthy conditions, which have become recruitment areas for traffickers, because in fact there are two options offered there: go home or try to get back to the sea “.

    In short, even the interventions for the protection of migrants and refugees must be read in a broader context, of a contraction of mobility and human rights. “The refugee management itself has submitted to the goal of containment, which is the true original sin of the Italian and European strategy,” admits a UNHCR official.

    This dogma of containment, at any cost, affects everyone — people who travel, humanitarian actors, civil society, local governments — by distorting priorities, diverting funds, and undermining future relationships and prospects. The same ones that European officials call partnerships and which in the case of Africa, as reiterated in 2020 by President Ursula Von Der Leyen, should be “between equals”.

    Let’s take another example: the Egypt of President Abdel Fetah Al-Sisi. Since 2016, it has been increasingly isolated on the international level, also due to violent internal repression, which Italy knows something about. Among the thousands of people who have been disappeared or killed in recent years, is researcher Giulio Regeni, whose body was thrown on the side of a road north of Cairo in February 2016.

    Around the time of the murder, in which the complicity and cover-ups by the Egyptian security forces were immediately evident, the Italian Ministry of the Interior restarted its dialogue with the country. “It’s absurd, but Italy started to support Egypt in negotiations with the European Union,” explains lawyer Muhammed Al-Kashef, a member of the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Right and now a refugee in Germany.

    By inserting itself on an already existing cooperation project that saw italy, for example, finance the use of fingerprint-recording software used by the Egyptian police, the Italian Ministry of the Interior was able to create a police academy in Cairo, inaugurated in 2018 with European funds, to train the border guards of over 20 African countries. Italy also backed Egyptian requests within the Khartoum Process and, on a different front, sells weapons and conducts joint naval exercises.

    “Rome could have played a role in Egypt, supporting the democratic process after the 2011 revolution, but it preferred to fall into the migration trap, fearing a wave of migration that would never happen,” says Al-Kashef.

    With one result: “they have helped transform Egypt into a country that kills dreams, and often dreamers too, and from which all young people today want to escape”. Much more so than in 2015 or that hopeful 2011.

    Cracks in the wall, and how to widen them

    If you have read this far, following personal stories and routes of people and funds, you will have understood one thing, above all: that the beating heart of this strategy, set up by Italy with the participation of the European Union and vice versa, is the reduction of migrations across the Mediterranean. The wall, in fact.

    Now try to add other European countries to this picture. Since 2015 many have fully adopted — or returned to — this process of ‘externalization’ of migration policies. Spain, where the Canary Islands route reopened in 2019, demonstrating the fragility of the model you read about above; France, with its strategic network in the former colonies, the so-called Françafrique. And then Germany, Belgium, Holland, United Kingdom, Austria.

    Complicated, isn’t it? This great wall’s bricks and builders keep multiplying. Even more strategies, meetings, committees, funds and documents. And often, the same lack of transparency, which makes reconstructing these loans – understanding which cement, sand, and lime mixture was used, i.e. who really benefited from the expense, what equipment was provided, how the results were monitored – a long process, when it’s not impossible.

    The Pact on Migration and Asylum of the European Union, presented in September 2020, seems to confirm this: cooperation with third countries and relaunching repatriations are at its core.

    Even the European Union budget for the seven-year period 2021-2027, approved in December 2020, continues to focus on this expenditure, for example by earmarking for migration projects 10 percent of the new Neighborhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument, equipped with 70 billion euros, but also diverting a large part of the Immigration and Asylum Fund (8.7 billion) towards support for repatriation, and foreseeing 12.1 billion euros for border control.

    While now, with the new US presidency, some have called into question the future of the wall on the border with Mexico, perhaps the most famous of the anti-migrant barriers in the world, the wall built in the Mediterranean and further south, up to the equator, has seemingly never been so strong.

    But economists, sociologists, human rights defenders, analysts and travelers all demonstrate the problems with this model. “It’s a completely flawed approach, and there are no quick fixes to change it,” says David Kipp, a researcher at the German Institute for International Affairs, a government-funded think-tank.

    For Kipp, however, we must begin to deflate this migration bubble, and go back to addressing migration as a human phenomenon, to be understood and managed. “I dream of the moment when this issue will be normalized, and will become something boring,” he admits timidly.

    To do this, cracks must be opened in the wall and in a model that seems solid but really isn’t, that has undesirable effects, violates human rights, and isolates Europe and Italy.

    Anna Knoll, researcher at the European Center for Development Policy Management, explains for example that European policies have tried to limit movements even within Africa, while the future of the continent is the freedom of movement of goods and people, and “for Europe, it is an excellent time to support this, also given the pressure from other international players, China first of all”.

    For Sabelo Mbokazi, who heads the Labor and Migration department of the Social Affairs Commission of the African Union (AU), there is one issue on which the two continental blocs have divergent positions: legal entry channels. “For the EU, they are something residual, we have a much broader vision,” he explains. And this will be one of the themes of the next EU-AU summit, which was postponed several times in 2020.

    It’s a completely flawed approach, and there are no quick fixes to change it
    David Kipp - researcher at the German Institute for International Affairs

    Indeed, the issue of legal access channels to the Italian and European territory is one of the most important, and so far almost imperceptible, cracks in this Big Wall. In the last five years, Italy has spent just 15 million euros on it, 1.1 percent of the total expenditure dedicated to external dimensions of migration.

    The European Union hasn’t done any better. “Legal migration, which was one of the pillars of the strategy born in Valletta in 2015, has remained a dead letter, but if we limit ourselves to closing the borders, we will not go far”, says Stefano Manservisi, who as a senior official of the EU Commission worked on all the migration dossiers during those years.

    Yet we all know that a trafficker’s worst enemy are passport stamps, visas, and airline tickets.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=HmR96ySikkY

    Helen Dempster, who’s an economist at the Center for Global Development, spends her days studying how to do this: how to open legal channels of entry, and how to get states to think about it. And there is an effective example: we must not end up like Japan.

    “For decades, Japan has had very restrictive migration policies, it hasn’t allowed anyone in”, explains Dempster, “but in recent years it has realized that, with its aging population, it soon won’t have enough people to do basic jobs, pay taxes, and finance pensions”. And so, in April 2019, the Asian country began accepting work visa applications, hoping to attract 500,000 foreign workers.

    In Europe, however, “the hysteria surrounding migration in 2015 and 2016 stopped all debate“. Slowly, things are starting to move again. On the other hand, several European states, Italy and Germany especially, have one thing in common with Japan: an increasingly aging population.

    “All European labor ministries know that they must act quickly, but there are two preconceptions: that it is difficult to develop adequate projects, and that public opinion is against it.” For Dempster, who helped design an access program to the Belgian IT sector for Moroccan workers, these are false problems. “If we want to look at it from the point of view of the security of the receiving countries, bringing a person with a passport allows us to have a lot more information about who they are, which we do not have if we force them to arrive by sea”, she explains.

    Let’s look at some figures to make it easier: in 2007, Italy made 340,000 entry visas available, half of them seasonal, for non-EU workers, as part of the Flows Decree, Italy’s main legal entry channel adopted annually by the government. Few people cried “invasion” back then. Ten years later, in 2017, those 119,000 people who reached Italy through the Mediterranean seemed a disproportionate number. In the same year, the quotas of the Flow decree were just 30,000.

    Perhaps these numbers aren’t comparable, and building legal entry programs is certainly long, expensive, and apparently impractical, if we think of the economic and social effects of the coronavirus pandemic in which we are immersed. For Dempster, however, “it is important to be ready, to launch pilot programs, to create infrastructures and relationships”. So that we don’t end up like Japan, “which has urgently launched an access program for workers, without really knowing how to manage them”.

    The Spanish case, as already mentioned, shows how a model born twenty years ago, and then adopted along all the borders between Europe and Africa, does not really work.

    As international mobility declined, aided by the pandemic, at least 41,000 people landed in Spain in 2020, almost all of them in the Canary Islands. Numbers that take us back to 2006 and remind us how, after all, this ‘outsourcing’ offers costly and ineffective solutions.

    It’s reminiscent of so-called planned obsolescence, the production model for which a technological object isn’t built to last, inducing the consumer to replace it after a few years. But continually renewing and re-financing these walls can be convenient for multinational security companies, shipyards, political speculators, authoritarian regimes, and international traffickers. Certainly not for citizens, who — from the Italian and European institutions — would expect better products. May they think of what the world will be like in 10, 30, 50 years, and avoid trampling human rights and canceling democratic processes in the name of a goal that — history seems to teach — is short-lived. The ideas are not lacking. [At this link you’ll find the recommendations developed by ActionAid: https://thebigwall.org/en/recommendations/].

    https://thebigwall.org/en
    #Italie #externalisation #complexe_militaro-industriel #migrations #frontières #business #Afrique #budget #Afrique_du_Nord #Libye #chiffres #Niger #Soudan #Ethiopie #Sénégal #root_causes #causes_profondes #contrôles_frontaliers #EU_Trust_Fund_for_Africa #Trust_Fund #propagande #campagne #dissuasion

    –—

    Ajouté à la métaliste sur l’externalisation :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/731749
    Et plus précisément :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/731749#message765328

    ping @isskein @karine4 @rhoumour @_kg_

  • LES ENFANTS DE LA CLARÉE

    #Raphaël_Krafft part à la rencontre de ceux qui accueillent et de ceux qui s’exilent. Un reportage littéraire et humain.

    En novembre 2017, Raphaël Krafft part en reportage dans les Alpes à la frontière franco-italienne. Il accompagne un habitant de la région parti en maraude à la rencontre d’éventuels migrants perdus dans la montagne. Les premières neiges viennent de tomber. Ce soir-là, ils découvrent cachés dans un bosquet quatre #mineurs . Alors qu’ils les emmènent dans un lieu dédié à l’accueil des personnes migrantes, la gendarmerie les arrête avant d’abandonner les adolescents dans la montagne au niveau de la borne frontière. Trois d’entre eux sont guinéens, comme la majorité des jeunes migrants qui passent par ce col.

    Marqué par cette expérience, Raphaël Krafft se lie d’amitié avec les habitants du village de #Névache situé juste en dessous du col et propose aux enfants de l’école communale de partir en Guinée réaliser des reportages et les aider ainsi à comprendre pourquoi tant de jeunes décident de quitter leur foyer. Là-bas, il découvre un pays démuni, marqué par des années de dictature.

    https://editions-marchialy.fr/livre/les-enfants-de-la-claree

    #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Hautes-Alpes #Briançonnais #France #sauvetage #montagne #Alpes #frontières

    –—

    Un reportage de Raphaël Krafft, passé sur France Culture en 2017 :
    Quand les mineurs africains sont abandonnés dans la montagne
    https://www.franceculture.fr/emissions/le-magazine-de-la-redaction/quand-les-mineurs-africains-sont-abandonnes-dans-la-montagne

    Et signalé sur seenthis :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/642301#message645671
    https://seenthis.net/messages/645699

    • Raphaël Krafft part à la rencontre de ceux qui accueillent et de ceux qui s’exilent

      En novembre 2017, Raphaël Krafft part en reportage dans les Alpes à la frontière franco-italienne. Il accompagne un habitant de la région parti en maraude à la rencontre d’éventuels migrants perdus dans la montagne. Les 1ères neiges viennent de tomber. Ce soir-là, ils découvrent ,cachés dans un bosquet, 4 mineurs....

      Disparu durant l’été 2018, Bernard Liger était un personnage respecté du village de Névache, près de la frontière italienne. Ancien officier d’active, installé dans les Hautes Alpes à sa retraite, il avait mis en place ces dernières années un véritable réseau d’aide aux migrants tentant de passer en France par le #Col_de_l’Echelle. Exactement comme les marins sur les océans, les #montagnards ne peuvent en effet pas imaginer ne pas porter #secours à des humains mourant de froid dans leurs montagnes. Guides, pompiers, médecins ou simples citoyens, ceux qui recueillent, réchauffent, nourrissent et tentent d’amener à Briançon les réfugiés désireux de demander asile en France, savent qu’ils s’exposent aux tracasseries des forces de police qui traquent les clandestins et les Français accusés de #délit_de_solidarité.

      En 2017 Raphaël Krafft, grand reporter, dont l’on entend souvent les documentaires sur les ondes de France Culture, se fera lui-même arrêter par la gendarmerie après avoir participé au sauvetage en montagne de quatre mineurs africains, dont trois guinéens. Choqué d’apprendre que les policiers les avaient ramené la nuit même en Italie par le col de l’Echelle, sans prendre en considération leur statut de mineur isolé, Raphaël Krafft va raconter l’histoire et enquêter jusqu’en Guinée pour tenter de comprendre ce qui pousse ces enfants à entreprendre une telle odyssée. Ses reportages sont à écouter en ligne sur le site de France Culture et de France Inter et son livre, Les enfants de La Clarée, vient de paraître aux éditions Marchialy.

      https://www.franceinter.fr/emissions/l-humeur-vagabonde/l-humeur-vagabonde-27-fevrier-2021
      #solidarité #accueil #religion #catholicisme #dissuasion #politique_de_dissuasion

    • Un autre livre de Raphaël Krafft, à la frontière dite « basse » (#Alpes-Maritimes, #Vintimille, #Menton)

      Passeur

      Automne 2015. Raphaël Krafft, journaliste indépendant, est à la frontière franco-italienne des Alpes-Maritimes, entre Menton et Vintimille. Il réalise un reportage sur les exilés bloqués là dans l’attente de passer en France pour demander l’asile ou de continuer vers un autre pays.

      Il rencontre tour à tour des militants, des policiers, des fonctionnaires, une avocate spécialiste des Droits de l’homme pour constater le drame de la situation. Et décide, par un acte de désobéissance civile, d’aider deux Soudanais, « Satellite » et Adeel, à franchir la frontière.

      À pied, Raphaël Krafft, son ami Thomas et les deux réfugiés entreprennent une ascension dans le #parc_du_Mercantour, jusqu’au #col_de_Fenestre, qui culmine à 2 474 mètres, pour atteindre la France.

      http://www.buchetchastel.fr/passeur-raphael-krafft-9782283029572

  • Analysis: Hezbollah rockets put Israel in trap it can’t end, or endure - Business Insider
    https://www.businessinsider.com/analysis-hezbollah-rockets-israel-trap-cant-end-or-endure-2020-7

    “This is why the most serious people in national security know that only negotiations with Iran over time can diminish this threat, in this case the Iranians and Hezbollah have established a level of deterrence that would have been unimaginable to the Israel of the 1970s.”

    #dissuasion #agression #Liban #négociations

  • L’État décide de frapper au porte-monnaie les départements qui résistent au fichage des #enfants

    Tout juste sorti de cette période de confinement, et alors que la crise sanitaire a fortement impacté la situation des mineur⋅es isolé⋅es, le gouvernement reprend l’offensive réglementaire à l’encontre de leurs droits.

    Un #décret daté du 23 juin 2020 vient d’autoriser l’État à réduire sa #contribution_financière aux #départements qui refusent de faire intervenir les #préfectures dans le processus d’évaluation et d’#identification de ces enfants.

    Pour mémoire, ce sont la #loi_Collomb de septembre 2018 et son décret d’application du 30 janvier 2019 qui ont institué un #fichier des mineur⋅es isolé⋅es permettant aux départements d’associer les préfectures à la détermination de leur #minorité, et de faciliter l’éloignement de celles et ceux qui auront fait l’objet d’une décision provisoire de non-admission à l’#aide_sociale_à_l’enfance.

    L’ensemble du secteur de la #protection_de_l’enfance – et en particulier le #Conseil_national_de_la_protection_de_l’enfance –, ainsi que la totalité des organisations qui se sont exprimées sur le sujet, ont dénoncé la confusion entre protection de l’enfance et lutte contre l’immigration irrégulière organisée par ce dispositif. Malgré quelques réserves, le Conseil constitutionnel et le Conseil d’État l’ont malheureusement validé.

    Un an après son entrée en vigueur, environ un tiers des départements, pour des motifs divers et variés, continue à refuser d’appliquer ce dispositif.

    Aussi, à défaut de pouvoir contraindre l’ensemble des départements à conclure avec les préfectures une convention permettant de vérifier si ces enfants figurent déjà dans deux #fichiers destinés au contrôle migratoire (#Visabio et #AGDREF) et de les inscrire dans un troisième, dénommé « #appui_à_l’évaluation_de_la_minorité » (#AEM), le gouvernement a décidé de les frapper au porte-monnaie.

    Ainsi, il recourt à présent au #chantage_financier pour contraindre les derniers départements réfractaires à ce mélange des genres. Ce faisant, il fait montre de son acharnement pour imposer sa logique du #soupçon et du #contrôle à la question de l’#accueil et de la protection des mineur⋅es isolé⋅es.

    Nos organisations demandent l’abrogation de ce décret, la mise en œuvre du premier accueil, l’accompagnement socio-éducatif des jeunes isolé⋅es, sans discrimination et dans le strict cadre de la protection de l’enfance.

    https://www.gisti.org/spip.php?article6438

    #France #fichage #migrations #asile #réfugiés #MNA #mineurs_non_accompagnés #enfance #renvois #expulsions #dissuasion #âge #catégorisation #tri #résistance

    ping @karine4 @isskein @etraces

  • Migrants : les échecs d’un #programme_de_retour_volontaire financé par l’#UE

    Alors qu’il embarque sur un vol de la Libye vers le Nigeria à la fin 2018, James a déjà survécu à un naufrage en Méditerranée, traversé une demi-douzaine d’États africains, été la cible de coups de feu et passé deux ans à être maltraité et torturé dans les centres de détention libyens connus pour la brutalité qui y règne.

    En 2020, de retour dans sa ville de Benin City (Etat d’Edo au Nigéria), James se retrouve expulsé de sa maison après n’avoir pas pu payer son loyer. Il dort désormais à même le sol de son salon de coiffure.

    Sa famille et ses amis l’ont tous rejeté parce qu’il n’a pas réussi à rejoindre l’Europe.

    « Le fait que tu sois de retour n’est source de bonheur pour personne ici. Personne ne semble se soucier de toi [...]. Tu es revenu les #mains_vides », raconte-t-il à Euronews.

    James est l’un des quelque 81 000 migrants africains qui sont rentrés dans leur pays d’origine avec l’aide de l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations (OIM) des Nations unies et le #soutien_financier de l’Union européenne, dans le cadre d’une initiative conjointe de 357 millions d’euros (https://migrationjointinitiative.org). Outre une place sur un vol au départ de la Libye ou de plusieurs autres pays de transit, les migrants se voient promettre de l’argent, un #soutien et des #conseils pour leur permettre de se réintégrer dans leur pays d’origine une fois rentrés chez eux.

    Mais une enquête d’Euronews menée dans sept pays africains a révélé des lacunes importantes dans ce programme, considéré comme la réponse phare de l’UE pour empêcher les migrants d’essayer de se rendre en Europe.

    Des dizaines de migrants ayant participé au programme ont déclaré à Euronews qu’une fois rentrés chez eux, ils ne recevaient aucune aide. Et ceux qui ont reçu une aide financière, comme James, ont déclaré qu’elle était insuffisante.

    Nombreux sont ceux qui envisagent de tenter à nouveau de se rendre en Europe dès que l’occasion se présente.

    « Je ne me sens pas à ma place ici », confie James. « Si l’occasion se présente, je quitte le pays ».

    Sur les 81 000 migrants qui ont été rapatriés depuis 2017, près de 33 000 ont été renvoyés de Libye par avion. Parmi eux, beaucoup ont été victimes de détention, d’abus et de violences de la part de passeurs, de milices et de bandes criminelles. Les conditions sont si mauvaises dans le pays d’Afrique du Nord que le programme est appelé « retour humanitaire volontaire » (VHR), plutôt que programme de « retour volontaire assisté » (AVR) comme ailleurs en Afrique.

    Après trois ans passés en Libye, Mohi, 24 ans, a accepté l’offre d’un vol de retour en 2019. Mais, une fois de retour dans son pays, son programme de réintégration ne s’est jamais concrétisé. « Rien ne nous a été fourni ; ils continuent à nous dire ’demain’ », raconte-t-il à Euronews depuis le nord du Darfour, au Soudan.

    Mohi n’est pas seul. Les propres statistiques de l’OIM sur les rapatriés au Soudan révèlent que seuls 766 personnes sur plus de 2 600 ont reçu un soutien économique. L’OIM attribue cette situation à des taux d’inflation élevés et à une pénurie de biens et d’argent sur place.

    Mais M. Kwaku Arhin-Sam, spécialiste des projets de développement et directeur de l’Institut d’évaluation Friedensau, estime de manière plus générale que la moitié des programmes de réintégration de l’OIM échouent.

    « La plupart des gens sont perdus au bout de quelques jours », explique-t-il.
    Deux tiers des migrants ne terminent pas les programmes de réintégration

    L’OIM elle-même revoit cette estimation à la baisse : l’agence des Nations unies a déclaré à Euronews que jusqu’à présent, seul un tiers des migrants qui ont commencé à bénéficier d’une aide à la réintégration sont allés au bout du processus. Un porte-parole a déclaré que l’initiative conjointe OIM/EU étant un processus volontaire, « les migrants peuvent décider de se désister à tout moment, ou de ne pas s’engager du tout ».

    Un porte-parole de l’OIM ajoute que la réintégration des migrants une fois qu’ils sont rentrés chez eux va bien au-delà du mandat de l’organisation, et « nécessite un leadership fort de la part des autorités nationales », ainsi que « des contributions actives à tous les niveaux de la société ».

    Entre mai 2017 et février 2019, l’OIM a aidé plus de 12 000 personnes à rentrer au Nigeria. Parmi elles, 9 000 étaient « joignables » lorsqu’elles sont rentrées chez elles, 5 000 ont reçu une formation professionnelle et 4 300 ont bénéficié d’une « aide à la réintégration ». Si l’on inclut l’accès aux services de conseil ou de santé, selon l’OIM Nigéria, un total de 7 000 sur 12 000 rapatriés – soit 58 % – ont reçu une aide à la réintégration.

    Mais le nombre de personnes classées comme ayant terminé le programme d’aide à la réintégration n’était que de 1 289. De plus, les recherches de Jill Alpes, experte en migration et chercheuse associée au Centre de recherche sur les frontières de Nimègue, ont révélé que des enquêtes visant à vérifier l’efficacité de ces programmes n’ont été menées qu’auprès de 136 rapatriés.

    Parallèlement, une étude de Harvard sur les Nigérians de retour de Libye (https://cdn1.sph.harvard.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/2464/2019/11/Harvard-FXB-Center-Returning-Home-FINAL.pdf) estime que 61,3 % des personnes interrogées ne travaillaient pas après leur retour, et que quelque 16,8 % supplémentaires ne travaillaient que pendant une courte période, pas assez longue pour générer une source de revenus stable. À leur retour, la grande majorité des rapatriés, 98,3 %, ne suivaient aucune forme d’enseignement régulier.

    La commissaire européenne aux affaires intérieures, Ylva Johansson, a admis à Euronews que « c’est un domaine dans lequel nous avons besoin d’améliorations ». Mme Johansson a déclaré qu’il était trop tôt pour dire quelles pourraient être ces améliorations, mais a maintenu que l’UE avait de bonnes relations avec l’OIM.

    Sandrine, Rachel et Berline, originaires du Cameroun, ont elles accepté de prendre un vol de l’OIM de Misrata, en Libye, à Yaoundé, la capitale camerounaise, en septembre 2018.

    En Libye, elles disent avoir subi des violences, des abus sexuels et avoir déjà risqué leur vie en tentant de traverser la Méditerranée. À cette occasion, elles ont été interceptées par les garde-côtes libyens et renvoyées en Libye.

    Une fois rentrées au Cameroun, Berline et Rachel disent n’avoir reçu ni argent ni soutien de l’OIM. Sandrine a reçu environ 900 000 fcfa (1 373,20 euros) pour payer l’éducation de ses enfants et lancer une petite entreprise – mais cela n’a pas duré longtemps.

    « Je vendais du poulet au bord de la route à Yaoundé, mais le projet ne s’est pas bien déroulé et je l’ai abandonné », confie-t-elle.

    Elle se souvient aussi d’avoir accouché dans un centre de détention de Tripoli avec des fusillades comme fond sonore.

    Toutes les trois ont affirmé qu’au moment de leur départ pour le Cameroun, elles n’avaient aucune idée de l’endroit où elles allaient dormir une fois arrivées et qu’elles n’avaient même pas d’argent pour appeler leur famille afin de les informer de leur retour.

    « Nous avons quitté le pays, et quand nous y sommes revenues, nous avons trouvé la même situation, parfois même pire. C’est pourquoi les gens décident de repartir », explique Berline.

    En novembre 2019, moins de la moitié des 3 514 migrants camerounais qui ont reçu une forme ou une autre de soutien de la part de l’OIM étaient considérés comme « véritablement intégrés » (https://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/ENG_Press%20release%20COPIL_EUTF%20UE_IOM_Cameroon.pdf).

    Seydou, un rapatrié malien, a reçu de l’argent de l’OIM pour payer son loyer pendant trois mois et les factures médicales de sa femme malade. Il a également reçu une formation commerciale et un moto-taxi.

    Mais au Mali, il gagne environ 15 euros par jour, alors qu’en Algérie, où il travaillait illégalement, il avait été capable de renvoyer chez lui plus de 1 300 euros au total, ce qui a permis de financer la construction d’une maison pour son frère dans leur village.

    Il tente actuellement d’obtenir un visa qui lui permettrait de rejoindre un autre de ses frères en France.

    Seydou est cependant l’un des rares Maliens chanceux. Les recherches de Jill Alpes, publiées par Brot für die Welt et Medico (l’agence humanitaire des Églises protestantes en Allemagne), ont révélé que seuls 10 % des migrants retournés au Mali jusqu’en janvier 2019 avaient reçu un soutien quelconque de l’OIM.

    L’OIM, quant à elle, affirme que 14 879 Maliens ont entamé le processus de réintégration – mais ce chiffre ne révèle pas combien de personnes l’ont achevé.
    Les stigmates du retour

    Dans certains cas, l’argent que les migrants reçoivent est utilisé pour financer une nouvelle tentative pour rejoindre l’Europe.

    Dans un des cas, une douzaine de personnes qui avaient atteint l’Europe et avaient été renvoyées chez elles ont été découvertes parmi les survivants du naufrage d’un bateau en 2019 (https://www.infomigrants.net/en/post/21407/mauritanian-coast-guard-intercepts-boat-carrying-around-190-migrants-i se dirigeait vers les îles Canaries. « Ils étaient revenus et ils avaient décidé de reprendre la route », a déclaré Laura Lungarotti, chef de la mission de l’OIM en Mauritanie.

    Safa Msehli, porte-parole de l’OIM, a déclaré à Euronews que l’organisation ne pouvait pas empêcher des personnes de tenter de repartir vers l’Europe une fois revenues.

    « C’est aux gens de décider s’ils veulent ou non émigrer et dans aucun de ses différents programmes, l’OIM ne prévoit pas d’empêcher les gens de repartir », a-t-elle expliqué.

    Qu’est-ce que l’OIM ?

    A partir de 2016, l’OIM s’est redéfinie comme agence des Nations unies pour les migrations, et en parallèle son budget a augmenté rapidement (https://governingbodies.iom.int/system/files/en/council/110/C-110-10%20-%20Director%20General%27s%20report%20to%20the%20110). Il est passé de 242,2 millions de dollars US (213 millions d’euros) en 1998 à plus de 2 milliards de dollars US (1,7 milliard d’euros) à l’automne 2019, soit une multiplication par huit. Bien qu’elle ne fasse pas partie des Nations unies, l’OIM est désormais une « organisation apparentée », avec un statut similaire à celui d’un prestataire privé.

    L’UE et ses États membres sont collectivement les principaux contributeurs au budget de l’OIM (https://governingbodies.iom.int/system/files/en/council/110/Statements/EU%20coordinated%20statement%20-%20Point%2013%20-%20final%20IOM), leurs dons représentant près de la moitié de son financement opérationnel.

    De son côté, l’OIM tient à mettre en évidence sur son site web les cas où son programme de retour volontaire a été couronné de succès, notamment celui de Khadeejah Shaeban, une rapatriée soudanaise revenue de Libye qui a pu monter un atelier de couture.

    –-
    Comment fonctionne le processus d’aide à la réintégration ?
    Les migrants embarquent dans un avion de l’OIM sur la base du volontariat et retournent dans leur pays ;
    Ils ont droit à des conseils avant et après le voyage ;
    Chaque « rapatrié » peut bénéficier de l’aide de bureaux locaux, en partenariat avec des ONG locales ;
    L’assistance à l’accueil après l’arrivée peut comprendre l’accueil à l’aéroport, l’hébergement pour la nuit, une allocation en espèces pour les besoins immédiats, une première assistance médicale, une aide pour le voyage suivant, une assistance matérielle ;
    Une fois arrivés, les migrants sont enregistrés et vont dans un centre d’hébergement temporaire où ils restent jusqu’à ce qu’ils puissent participer à des séances de conseil avec le personnel de l’OIM. Des entretiens individuels doivent aider les migrants à identifier leurs besoins. Les migrants en situation vulnérable reçoivent des conseils supplémentaires, adaptés à leur situation spécifique ;
    Cette assistance est généralement non monétaire et consiste en des cours de création d’entreprise, des formations professionnelles (de quelques jours à six mois/un an), des salons de l’emploi, des groupes de discussion ou des séances de conseil ; l’aide à la création de micro-entreprises. Toutefois, pour certains cas vulnérables, une assistance en espèces est fournie pour faire face aux dépenses quotidiennes et aux besoins médicaux ;
    Chaque module comprend des activités de suivi et d’évaluation afin de déterminer l’efficacité des programmes de réintégration.

    –-

    Des migrants d’#Afghanistan et du #Yémen ont été renvoyés dans ces pays dans le cadre de ce programme, ainsi que vers la Somalie, l’Érythrée et le Sud-Soudan, malgré le fait que les pays de l’UE découragent tout voyage dans ces régions.

    En vertu du droit international relatif aux Droits de l’homme, le principe de « #non-refoulement » garantit que nul ne doit être renvoyé dans un pays où il risque d’être torturé, d’être soumis à des traitements cruels, inhumains ou dégradants ou de subir d’autres préjudices irréparables. Ce principe s’applique à tous les migrants, à tout moment et quel que soit leur statut migratoire.

    L’OIM fait valoir que des procédures sont en place pour informer les migrants pendant toutes les phases précédant leur départ, y compris pour ceux qui sont vulnérables, en leur expliquant le soutien que l’organisation peut leur apporter une fois arrivés au pays.

    Mais même lorsque les migrants atterrissent dans des pays qui ne sont pas en proie à des conflits de longue durée, comme le Nigeria, certains risquent d’être confrontés à des dangers et des menaces bien réelles.

    Les principes directeurs du Haut Commissariat des Nations unies pour les réfugiés (HCR) sur la protection internationale considèrent que les femmes ou les mineurs victimes de trafic ont le droit de demander le statut de réfugié. Ces populations vulnérables risquent d’être persécutées à leur retour, y compris au Nigeria, voire même d’être à nouveau victime de traite.
    Forcer la main ?

    Le caractère volontaire contestable des opérations de retour s’étend également au Niger voisin, pays qui compte le plus grand nombre de migrants assistés par l’OIM et qui est présenté comme la nouvelle frontière méridionale de l’Europe.

    En 2015, le Niger s’est montré disposé à lutter contre la migration en échange d’un dédommagement de l’UE, mais des centaines de milliers de migrants continuent de suivre les routes à travers le désert en direction du nord pendant que le business du trafic d’êtres humains est florissant.

    Selon le Conseil européen sur les réfugiés et les exilés, une moyenne de 500 personnes sont expulsées d’Algérie vers le Niger chaque semaine, au mépris du droit international.

    La police algérienne détient, identifie et achemine les migrants vers ce qu’ils appellent le « #point zéro », situé à 15 km de la frontière avec le Niger. De là, les hommes, femmes et enfants sont contraints de marcher dans le désert pendant environ 25 km pour atteindre le campement le plus proche.

    « Ils arrivent à un campement frontalier géré par l’OIM (Assamaka) dans des conditions épouvantables, notamment des femmes enceintes souffrant d’hémorragies et en état de choc complet », a constaté Felipe González Morales, le rapporteur spécial des Nations unies, après sa visite en octobre 2018 (https://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=23698%26LangID).

    Jill Alpes, au Centre de recherche sur les frontières de Nimègue, estime que ces expulsions sont la raison principale pour laquelle les migrants acceptent d’être renvoyés du Niger. Souvent repérés lors d’opérations de recherche et de sauvetage de l’OIM dans le désert, ces migrants n’ont guère d’autre choix que d’accepter l’aide de l’organisation et l’offre de rapatriement qui s’ensuit.

    Dans ses travaux de recherche, Mme Alpes écrit que « seuls les migrants qui acceptent de rentrer au pays peuvent devenir bénéficiaire du travail humanitaire de l’OIM. Bien que des exceptions existent, l’OIM offre en principe le transport d’Assamakka à Arlit uniquement aux personnes expulsées qui acceptent de retourner dans leur pays d’origine ».

    Les opérations de l’IOM au Niger

    M. Morales, le rapporteur spécial des Nations unies, semble être d’accord (https://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=23698%26LangID). Il a constaté que « de nombreux migrants qui ont souscrit à l’aide au retour volontaire sont victimes de multiples violations des droits de l’Homme et ont besoin d’une protection fondée sur le droit international », et qu’ils ne devraient donc pas être renvoyés dans leur pays. « Cependant, très peu d’entre eux sont orientés vers une procédure de détermination du statut de réfugié ou d’asile, et les autres cas sont traités en vue de leur retour ».

    « Le fait que le Fonds fiduciaire de l’Union européenne apporte un soutien financier à l’OIM en grande partie pour sensibiliser les migrants et les renvoyer dans leur pays d’origine, même lorsque le caractère volontaire est souvent douteux, compromet son approche de la coopération au développement fondée sur les droits », indique le rapporteur spécial des Nations unies.
    Des contrôles insuffisants

    Loren Landau, professeur spécialiste des migrations et du développement au Département du développement international d’Oxford, affirme que le travail de l’OIM souffre en plus d’un manque de supervision indépendante.

    « Il y a très peu de recherches indépendantes et beaucoup de rapports. Mais ce sont tous des rapports écrits par l’OIM. Ils commandent eux-même leur propre évaluation , et ce, depuis des années », détaille le professeur.

    Dans le même temps, le Dr. Arhin-Sam, spécialiste lui de l’évaluation des programmes de développement, remet en question la responsabilité et la redevabilité de l’ensemble de la structure, arguant que les institutions et agences locales dépendent financièrement de l’OIM.

    « Cela a créé un haut niveau de dépendance pour les agences nationales qui doivent évaluer le travail des agences internationales comme l’OIM : elles ne peuvent pas être critiques envers l’OIM. Alors que font-elles ? Elles continuent à dire dans leurs rapports que l’OIM fonctionne bien. De cette façon, l’OIM peut ensuite se tourner vers l’UE et dire que tout va bien ».

    Selon M. Arhin-Sam, les ONG locales et les agences qui aident les rapatriés « sont dans une compétition très dangereuse entre elles » pour obtenir le plus de travail possible des agences des Nations unies et entrer dans leurs bonnes grâces.

    « Si l’OIM travaille avec une ONG locale, celle-ci ne peut plus travailler avec le HCR. Elle se considère alors chanceuse d’être financée par l’OIM et ne peuvent donc pas la critiquer », affirme-t-il.

    Par ailleurs, l’UE participe en tant qu’observateur aux organes de décision du HCR et de l’OIM, sans droit de vote, et tous les États membres de l’UE sont également membres de l’OIM.

    « Le principal bailleur de fonds de l’OIM est l’UE, et ils doivent se soumettre aux exigences de leur client. Cela rend le partenariat très suspect », souligne M. Arhin-Sam. « [Lorsque les fonctionnaires européens] viennent évaluer les projets, ils vérifient si tout ce qui est écrit dans le contrat a été fourni. Mais que cela corresponde à la volonté des gens et aux complexités de la réalité sur le terrain, c’est une autre histoire ».
    Une relation abusive

    « Les États africains ne sont pas nécessairement eux-mêmes favorables aux migrants », estime le professeur Landau. « L’UE a convaincu ces États avec des accords bilatéraux. S’ils s’opposent à l’UE, ils perdront l’aide internationale dont ils bénéficient aujourd’hui. Malgré le langage du partenariat, il est évident que la relation entre l’UE et les États africains ressemble à une relation abusive, dans laquelle un partenaire est dépendant de l’autre ».

    Les chercheurs soulignent que si les retours de Libye offrent une voie de sortie essentielle pour les migrants en situation d’extrême danger, la question de savoir pourquoi les gens sont allés en Libye en premier lieu n’est jamais abordée.

    Une étude réalisée par l’activiste humanitaire libyenne Amera Markous (https://www.cerahgeneve.ch/files/6115/7235/2489/Amera_Markous_-_MAS_Dissertation_2019.pdf) affirme que les migrants et les réfugiés sont dans l’impossibilité d’évaluer en connaissance de cause s’ils doivent retourner dans leur pays quand ils se trouvent dans une situation de détresse, comme par exemple dans un centre de détention libyen.

    « Comment faites-vous en sorte qu’ils partent parce qu’ils le veulent, ou simplement parce qu’ils sont désespérés et que l’OIM leur offre cette seule alternative ? » souligne la chercheuse.

    En plus des abus, le stress et le manque de soins médicaux peuvent influencer la décision des migrants de rentrer chez eux. Jean-Pierre Gauci, chercheur principal à l’Institut britannique de droit international et comparé, estime, lui, que ceux qui gèrent les centres de détention peuvent faire pression sur un migrant emprisonné pour qu’il s’inscrive au programme.

    « Il existe une situation de pouvoir, perçu ou réel, qui peut entraver le consentement effectif et véritablement libre », explique-t-il.

    En réponse, l’OIM affirme que le programme Retour Humanitaire Volontaire est bien volontaire, que les migrants peuvent changer d’avis avant d’embarquer et décider de rester sur place.

    « Il n’est pas rare que des migrants qui soient prêts à voyager, avec des billets d’avion et des documents de voyage, changent d’avis et restent en Libye », déclare un porte-parole de l’OIM.

    Mais M. Landau affirme que l’initiative UE-OIM n’a pas été conçue dans le but d’améliorer la vie des migrants.

    « L’objectif n’est pas de rendre les migrants heureux ou de les réintégrer réellement, mais de s’en débarrasser d’une manière qui soit acceptable pour les Européens », affirme le chercheur.

    « Si par ’fonctionner’, nous entendons se débarrasser de ces personnes, alors le projet fonctionne pour l’UE. C’est une bonne affaire. Il ne vise pas à résoudre les causes profondes des migrations, mais crée une excuse pour ce genre d’expulsions ».

    https://fr.euronews.com/2020/06/22/migrants-les-echecs-d-un-programme-de-retour-volontaire-finance-par-l-u
    #retour_volontaire #échec #campagne #dissuasion #migrations #asile #réfugiés #IOM #renvois #expulsions #efficacité #réintégration #EU #Union_européenne #Niger #Libye #retour_humanitaire_volontaire (#VHR) #retour_volontaire_assisté (#AVR) #statistiques #chiffres #aide_à_la_réintégration #Nigeria #réfugiés_nigérians #travail #Cameroun #migrerrance #stigmates #stigmatisation #Assamaka #choix #rapatriement #Fonds_fiduciaire_de_l'Union européenne #fonds_fiduciaire #coopération_au_développement #aide_au_développement #HCR #partenariat #pouvoir

    –---
    Ajouté à la métaliste migrations & développement (et plus précisément en lien avec la #conditionnalité_de_l'aide) :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/733358#message768702

    ping @rhoumour @karine4 @isskein @_kg_

  • Cyprus to launch #SMS campaign to stem migrant arrivals

    Cyprus is launching a multilingual SMS campaign to head off more migrant arrivals by dispelling the mistaken belief the European Union member country is a gateway to the continent, the Cypriot interior minister said Sunday.

    Nicos Nouris told the Associated Press the text-message blitz aims to counter “disinformation” propagated by people traffickers that securing asylum status in Cyprus will grant would-be migrants a “passport” to other EU countries.

    Nouris said arriving migrants are effectively “trapped” in Cyprus because the island nation isn’t part of the Schengen area — those 26 European nations that have abolished their borders and permit unrestricted travel between them.

    The minister said Cyprus, with a population of roughly 880,000, has “by a wide margin” the largest number of migrants relative to its population in the 27-member bloc.

    He said 3.8% of those living on Cyprus are asylum seekers, while that number is under 1% in other front-line EU states, like Greece, Italy, Spain and Malta.

    It’s estimated that 25-30% of all migrants currently in Cyprus are refugees fleeing conflict.

    According Asylum Service Statistics, Syrians filled the most asylum applications last year, followed by people from Georgia, India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Cameroon, Vietnam, Egypt, Nigeria and Sri Lanka.

    Nouris had previously said that most migrants arrive to ethnically divided Cyprus’ breakaway north and cross a United Nations-controlled buffer zone to seek asylum in the internationally recognized south.

    Meanwhile, Nouris said around 700 migrants will remain confined to a reception center on the outskirts of the capital Nicosia until a small scabies infestation there is completely eliminated.

    The minister said he expects confinement measures to be lifted “soon” after all those with scabies have been treated.

    The migrants were confined to the center since late March when the government enacted a strict, stay-at-home order to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Those restrictions were lifted May 23, but the migrants weren’t allowed to leave the center.

    https://www.ekathimerini.com/253269/article/ekathimerini/news/cyprus-to-launch-sms-campaign-to-stem-migrant-arrivals

    #campagne #dissuasion #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Chypre

    –—

    Ajouté à la #métaliste de #campagnes de #dissuasion à l’#émigration :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/763551

  • Lesbos en quarantaine, la situation des réfugiés

    Dans le camp de Mória sur l’île de Lesbos, des travailleurs humanitaires apportent leur soutien à des dizaines de milliers de migrants malgré le confinement et les conditions sanitaires catastrophiques. « ARTE Regards » lève le voile sur la situation désespérée dans ce site surpeuplé, considéré comme l’un des plus dangereux d’Europe.

    Leurs histoires ne font pas la une mais elles émeuvent, surprennent et donnent à réfléchir. En prise avec un thème d’actualité, les reportages choisis par ARTE Regards vont à la rencontre de citoyens européens et proposent une plongée inédite dans leurs réalités quotidiennes.

    https://www.arte.tv/fr/videos/090637-059-A/arte-regards-lesbos-en-quarantaine-la-situation-des-refugies
    #Moria #Lesbos #asile #migrations #réfugiés #distanciation_sociale #camps_de_réfugiés #coronavirus #covid-19 #Team_Humanity #humanitaire #solidarité #Grèce #délit_de_solidarité #dissuasion
    #film #vidéo #documentaire #campement #bagarres #agressions #queue #déchets #liberté_de_mouvement #hygiène #eau #accès_à_l'eau #eaux_usées #sécurité #insécurité #toilettes #résistance #relocalisation #
    ping @luciebacon

  • En #France, l’État appelé à « moderniser » sa #politique_migratoire

    #Travail, #asile, #expulsions... La #Cour_des_comptes préconise, dans un rapport publié ce mardi 5 mai, une « #modernisation » de la politique migratoire française, réhabilitant au passage les #quotas.

    Les expulsions ? « Peu efficaces. » L’enregistrement de la demande d’asile ? Trop lente. L’immigration de travail ? Doit s’inspirer du modèle canadien. Le rapport de la Cour des comptes utilise trente fois le mot « modernisation » pour revoir la politique migratoire française.

    Dans ce document intitulé « L’entrée, le séjour et le premier accueil des personnes étrangères » (https://www.ccomptes.fr/fr/publications/lentree-le-sejour-et-le-premier-accueil-des-personnes-etrangeres), la Cour dresse l’état des lieux d’une politique dont le triptyque, maîtrise de l’immigration, garantie du droit d’asile et intégration, nécessite « des objectifs plus tangibles, plus précis et plus réalistes ».

    À commencer par ceux impartis aux délais d’#enregistrement des #demandes_d'asile. « Depuis plusieurs années, les cibles de délais assignées par l’État sont plus strictes que les obligations légales, car elles sont en partie conçues comme des signaux supposés décourager les #demandes_infondées », relève l’autorité administrative indépendante, pointant en particulier les procédures dites « accélérées », qui doivent être traitées en 15 jours mais dont les délais réels constatés sont de 121 jours.

    Allonger la durée de certains titres de séjour

    Parmi ses 14 recommandations pour la France, qui « accueille sensiblement moins de personnes étrangères que les autres grands pays occidentaux par la voie de l’immigration régulière », la juridiction financière suggère également de « simplifier le régime du séjour en allongeant la durée de certains titres, en automatisant le renouvellement de ceux qui s’y prêtent et en allégeant les formalités procédurales ».

    En 2018, selon le rapport, plus des trois quarts des premiers titres avaient une validité d’un an, sans que ce ne soit « le gage d’une plus grande sélectivité », avec des refus de renouvellement de 1% seulement.

    Modèle canadien pour l’immigration professionnelle

    La filière d’immigration professionnelle, elle, « pourrait être modernisée et diversifiée en s’inspirant du modèle canadien, fondé sur des cibles quantitatives pluriannuelles » et « un système de sélection individuel ». La Cour reprend à son compte la notion controversée de quotas pour la migration de travail, qui s’était effondrée en France entre 2011 et 2017, avant de se redresser.

    Elle rappelle que la liste des « métiers en tension », censée déterminer les professions pour lesquelles l’immigration professionnelle est ouverte, est « aujourd’hui dépassée ». Une obsolescence qui fait consensus jusqu’au gouvernement, qui a prévu de la réviser.

    Scepticisme au ministère de l’Intérieur

    Dans une réponse à la Cour des comptes, le ministère de l’Intérieur s’est montré sceptique, évoquant une hypothèse « avant tout adaptée à un pays ayant d’importants besoins de main-d’œuvre sans possibilité de mobiliser des actifs déjà installés » sur le territoire. « Cette situation n’est pas celle de la France [...] qui doit parallèlement assurer l’insertion dans l’emploi de personnes résidant en France, qu’elles soient Françaises ou étrangères. »

    Par ailleurs, l’autorité administrative a jugé « peu efficace » la politique d’éloignement du gouvernement, lui suggérant de « mettre en place les moyens nécessaires à l’augmentation du nombre de départs aidés ». Sur ce point, la Place Beauvau n’a pas repris la Cour.

    http://www.rfi.fr/fr/france/20200505-%C3%A9tat-appel%C3%A9-moderniser-politique-migratoire-cour-comptes-rapp
    #procédure_accélérée #découragement #dissuasion #droit_d'asile #migrations #réfugiés #titres_de_séjour #renouvellement #étrangers #modèle_canadien #travailleurs_étrangers #immigration_professionnelle #sélection_individuelle #métiers_en_tension #renvois #départs_aidés #sans-papiers #efficacité

    Renvois peu efficaces ? La solution envisagée par la cour des comptes, des "renvois aidés" (au lieu de papiers !) :

    l’autorité administrative a jugé « peu efficace » la politique d’éloignement du gouvernement, lui suggérant de « mettre en place les moyens nécessaires à l’augmentation du nombre de départs aidés ».

    Lien pour télécharger le #rapport :


    https://www.ccomptes.fr/system/files/2020-05/20200505-rapport-entree-sejour-premier-accueil-personnes-etrangeres.pdf

    ping @karine4 @isskein

  • La #Slovénie érige de nouvelles barrières à sa frontière avec la #Croatie


    https://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/24082/la-slovenie-erige-de-nouvelles-barrieres-a-sa-frontiere-avec-la-croati

    La Slovénie a décidé de renforcer sa frontière avec la Croatie afin d’éviter des franchissements illégaux par des migrants, a annoncé mardi le ministère de l’Intérieur. En cinq ans, près de 200 kilomètres de clôtures ont déjà été construits dans cette zone.

    La Slovénie a déclaré, mardi 14 avril, qu’elle allait ajouter 40 kilomètres de nouvelles barrières à sa frontière avec la Croatie afin d’empêcher des migrants de la franchir clandestinement, rapporte l’agence de presse Reuters. Depuis 2015, le pays a fait construire progressivement quelque 196 kilomètres de clôtures sur les 670 kilomètres de frontière commune entre la Slovénie et la Croatie.

    Le ministère n’a pas précisé où les nouvelles barrières seront installées, mais a indiqué que leur construction serait effective dans le courant de l’année. Une annonce similaire portant également sur 40 kilomètres de nouvelles barrières avait été faite en juillet dernier pour l’année 2019.

    Bien que la Croatie et la Slovénie soient membres de l’Union européenne, la première n’appartient pas à l’espace Schengen de libre circulation. Les autorités slovènes ont donc expliqué l’an dernier qu’elles comptaient installer de nouvelles clôtures « dans les zones où il est urgent d’empêcher le franchissement illégal des frontières et de protéger les citoyens et leurs biens ».

    Explosion du nombre de tentatives de franchissement de la frontière

    Sur les deux premiers mois de l’année 2020, la police slovène a dénombré 1 165 tentatives de passage clandestin, soit près de 80% de plus qu’à la même période l’an dernier. Elle avait notamment annoncé, le mois dernier, avoir découvert une trentaine de migrants cachés dans un train de marchandises (https://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/23225/slovenie-la-police-decouvre-trente-migrants-caches-sous-de-l-argile-da).

    Revenu fin février dans le fauteuil de Premier ministre, Janez Jansa avait promis lors de sa campagne de durcir sa politique en matière d’asile, d’ajouter de nouvelles barrières frontalières et de renforcer les contrôles aux frontières de ce petit pays de deux millions d’habitants situé sur le route migratoire des Balkans (https://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/23045/slovenie-le-conservateur-janez-jansa-revient-au-pouvoir-en-durcissant-).

    Durant le pic de la crise migratoire en 2015 et 2016, un demi million de migrants clandestins avait traversé la Slovénie en six mois afin d’atteindre les pays d’Europe occidentale plus riches, comme la France, l’Allemagne ou le Royaume-Uni.

    #barrières_frontalières #asile #migrations #réfugiés #murs #route_des_balkans #frontière_sud-alpine #frontières #clôture

    • C’était 2019...
      En Slovénie, une clôture « de la honte » à la frontière croate (1/3)

      Depuis 2015, le gouvernement slovène érige le long de sa frontière sud une clôture de #barbelés pour tenter d’endiguer le flux de migrants en provenance de la Croatie voisine. Les villages slovènes traversés par les fils barbelés supportent mal l’installation de ce grillage qui, selon eux, abîme le #paysage et n’empêche pas la traversée des migrants.

      « Qui aime se réveiller le matin avec des #fils_barbelés devant sa fenêtre ? » Rudy ne décolère pas. Cet habitant de #Slavski_Laz, un village perdu dans les #montagnes slovènes, frontalier avec la Croatie, ne s’explique toujours pas pourquoi le gouvernement a construit, ici, au bord de la #rivière_Kolpa, une clôture de barbelés.

      « Ils disent que ce grillage est fait pour nous protéger… Mais nous protéger de quoi ? Je n’ai #peur de rien… », continue ce retraité qui vit depuis des années dans la région encore largement sauvage. L’argument de « l’#invasion_migratoire » brandi par le gouvernement pour justifier la construction de ce mur de métal ne le convainc pas.

      « Les migrants ici, ils passent, c’est tout », explique-t-il. « Ils transitent par la Slovénie et puis s’en vont vers d’autres pays, vers le nord de l’Europe généralement ».

      Les amis de Rudy acquiescent, tous attablés dans le seul café encore ouvert à 19h de #Kostel, un village de moins de 650 habitants non loin d’une des rares routes menant à la Croatie. Selon eux, la clôture est inutile, elle abîme le paysage, et son rôle de #dissuasion est largement surestimé. « Ils disent que les barbelés vont empêcher le passage de migrants… Mais tout le monde passe quand même ! », sourit Marco, un ami de Rudy, habitant dans le village voisin de Fara, en déclenchant l’hilarité de l’assemblée.

      « Par exemple, en ce moment, avec l’hiver et les forts courants, les rivages sont boueux, poreux, alors, les terrains bougent, la clôture s’effondre. Les migrants qui veulent passer n’ont même pas besoin de se fatiguer, ils ont juste à l’#enjamber », continue Marco en riant. « Il y a des endroits où des sillons se sont creusés. Ils peuvent aussi passer sous la barrière ! »

      116 km de #grillages

      Près de 14 000 migrants ont traversé la frontière depuis le début de l’année, « soit 70% de plus que l’année dernière », à la même période, affirment les autorités slovènes à InfoMigrants.

      Cet été, 40 km supplémentaires de grillages ont donc été construits à la frontière sud, le long de la rivière Kolpa. « Il faut empêcher le franchissement illégal des frontières », a indiqué le ministère de l’Intérieur dans un communiqué. En tout, depuis 2015, Ljulbjana a déjà érigé 116 km de grillages le long de la Kolpa qui parcourt les 670 km de frontière avec la Croatie.

      « Ces clôtures ne sont pas une baguette magique mais elles nous aident », ajoute, de son côté, un commandant de police slovène.

      Khaled, un demandeur d’asile érythréen, aujourd’hui à Ljubljana, a tenté trois fois le passage de la frontière slovène avant de réussir à entrer dans le pays. La clôture, il s’en souvient très bien. « J’ai traversé la frontière au mois de mai, quelque part vers #Ribnica. Je me souviens qu’une fois la rivière franchie, il a fallu passer ces barbelés. Alors j’ai grimpé, je me suis déchiré les mains, elles étaient pleines de sang, mais je suis passé ».

      Montagnes dangereuses, présence d’#ours, eau glaciale

      Au delà de sa dangerosité, Rudy, le villageois, voit dans cet alignement de barbelés, une « #clôture_de_la_honte » qui, selon lui, stigmatise les migrants. « On voit arriver des familles, parfois des enfants. Je ne vois pas bien en quoi, ce sont des ennemis », continue le retraité.

      « Cette barrière, c’est le début de l’enfer », explique à son tour une jeune fille qui énumère les dangers qui attendent les migrants juste après son franchissement : la montagne « très dangereuse quand on s’y perd », les températures « glaciales » et les ours, nombreux dans le pays. « Parfois, on entend des cris là-haut. Ce sont des migrants qui hurlent pour effrayer les animaux ».

      Ces dernières semaines, deux migrants sont décédés par #noyade dans la Kolpa et un autre a été retrouvé mort de froid et d’#épuisement dans la #forêt.

      Surtout, les migrants doivent éviter les patrouilles de #police. « La nuit, quand nous tentons la traversée, nous voyons les lumières des lampes torche, derrière la clôture. Les #policiers sont partout. C’est ça qui nous effraie le plus », se souvient Khaled. « On fait tout pour les éviter. Quand la police vous attrape, elle vous renvoie en Croatie. Elle vous emmène rarement jusqu’à la capitale pour demander l’asile ».

      Depuis le début de l’année, sur les 14 000 entrées illégales, plus de 8 000 renvois – aussi appelés « pushbacks » - ont été effectués depuis les frontières slovènes, affirment les autorités.

      Patrouille de miliciens d’extrême-droite

      « C’est une #honte, il y a la police, l’armée, maintenant cette clôture et il y a même une milice ! », fulmine à son tour Katarina Bernad Sterva, directrice de l’association slovène d’aide aux réfugiés, qui se désespère de la situation à la frontière.

      Depuis quelques jours en effet, des miliciens en treillis militaires, visages cachés derrière des cagoules noires, patrouillent aussi le long de la rivière Kolpa. Dirigée par le leader d’extrême-droite, Andrej Sisko,cette milice se veut un « renfort » à l’armée régulière pour « défendre la frontière » et intercepter les migrants. « Nous sommes le point d’entrée de l’espace Schengen », se justifie Andrej Sisko. « Nous voulons faire passer un message. Nous voulons dire aux étrangers de rester chez eux. La clôture est fragile, elle ne permet pas de stopper les migrants alors nous venons contrôler les abords de la rivière nous-mêmes ».

      La milice d’#Andrej_Sisko n’a aucun mandat légal. Et visiblement, les villageois s’expliquent mal leur présence.

      Si certains rient à leur passage - « C’est le carnaval quand ils sont là », entend-t-on ici et là dans les villages frontaliers – d’autres comme Katarina Bernad Sterva regarde cette armée parallèle avec une inquiétude grandissante. « Ce qui m’effraie, c’est qu’ils existent. Publiquement, le gouvernement a condamné leurs actions, mais, dans les faits, les autorités ne font rien. Ces hommes sont fous, nous nous attendions à une réaction forte du gouvernement, comme par exemple l’annonce de la dissolution de ces patrouilles ».
      https://twitter.com/sarecmarjan/status/1036914541693755400?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E10

      Interrogée par InfoMigrants, la police reste muette sur le sujet. « Je n’ai rien à dire sur ces hommes. Ils n’ont pas le soutien de la police », déclare simplement Vicjem Toskan, l’un des commandants en chef de la police de Koper, à l’ouest du pays.

      Ce soir-là, à Kostel, les amis du café s’interrogent surtout sur le sort réservé aux migrants interceptés par cette milice d’extrême-droite. « On a déjà la police et l’armée pour intercepter les migrants. On a une clôture pour les empêcher de continuer leur route. Eux, qu’est-ce qui vont leur faire, la nuit, dans la montagne ? », s’inquiète Rudy. « Ils portent des masques, ils marchent dans la forêt. J’ai plus peur d’eux que des immigrés qui traversent la rivière », chuchote à son tour, une jeune fille en bout de table. « Si j’étais migrante, je n’aimerais vraiment pas tomber sur eux ».

      https://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/20807/en-slovenie-une-cloture-de-la-honte-a-la-frontiere-croate-1-3

      #milices #patrouilles #extrême_droite #Kolpa #efficacité #montagne #Alpes #décès #morts #mourir_aux_frontières #danger #dangers #push-back #refoulement #refoulements #militarisation_des_frontières #push-backs

      –---

      #Walls_don't_work :

      « Par exemple, en ce moment, avec l’hiver et les forts courants, les rivages sont boueux, poreux, alors, les terrains bougent, la clôture s’effondre. Les migrants qui veulent passer n’ont même pas besoin de se fatiguer, ils ont juste à l’#enjamber », continue Marco en riant. « Il y a des endroits où des sillons se sont creusés. Ils peuvent aussi passer sous la barrière ! »

      –-> voir la métaliste

    • Despite all the existing reports about the Croatian police violence and brutality, Slovenia continues to pushback migrants to Croatia. This was recently even recognized by the Italian court: an Italian court stopped deportation to Slovenia on the grounds that there is a risk for an asylum seeker to be subjected to inhumane and degrading treatment due to the high possibility of him (or her) being further expelled to Croatia and then to Bosnia or Serbia.
      More on that in AYS article from beginning of June:
      AYS Special: Italian Court StopsDeportation to Slovenia, Meanwhile Pushbacks Continue
      https://medium.com/are-you-syrious/ays-special-italian-court-stops-deportation-to-slovenia-meanwhile-pushbacks-

      Last week, the new Slovenian Minister of Interior Affair (of the new right wing government) frankly admitted in an interview that Slovenian police is sending migrants back to Croatia and consequently into the refugees centres in Bosnia and Serbia:
      Notranji minister Aleš Hojs razkril migracijsko »skrivnost«
      https://www.dnevnik.si/1042931634 (only in Slovenian)

      Currently, the government is also preparing a new Aliens Act where they plan to severely restrict access to asylum (among many other things): this means that during what they call complex migration emergencies, proclaimed by the government, access to asylum can be completely limited.

      Message reçu via la mailing-list Migreurop, le 15.06.2020

    • Slovénie : une vingtaine de migrants « proches de la suffocation » découverts dans des camions

      La police slovène a annoncé avoir découvert 22 migrants cachés dans des camion-citernes, samedi, à la frontière croate. Les contrôles ont été fortement renforcés dans cette région avec notamment l’envoi de 1 000 nouveaux policiers début juin.

      « Ils étaient proches de la suffocation. » Vingt-deux migrants cachés dans deux camion-citernes alimentaires ont été découverts par la police slovène, samedi 20 juin, à la frontière avec la Croatie, rapporte l’agence de presse AP. Les deux poids-lourds avaient des plaques d’immatriculation provenant de Serbie.

      Un premier groupe de 13 migrants a été découvert lors d’un contrôle de police à la frontière. Le second groupe, composé de 9 personnes, a été trouvé peu après dans un autre camion appartenant à la même compagnie.

      Les migrants sont originaires du Bangladesh, d’Inde, de Turquie et de Syrie, indique la police.

      Des milliers de migrants empruntent chaque année la route dite « des Balkans » malgré sa dangerosité. Un grand nombre d’entre eux font appel à des passeurs afin de traverser les frontières vers l’Europe occidentale dans des camions, plutôt que de tenter leur chance à pied à travers les forêts et les montagnes de la région.

      Craignant une recrudescence des passages clandestins à la suite du déconfinement décrété dans différents pays européens, la Slovénie a annoncé, début juin, qu’elle envoyait 1000 officiers de police en renfort à sa frontière avec la Croatie. Ces effectifs sont équipés de #drones, de #caméras_thermiques et de #détecteurs_de_mouvements.


      https://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/25519/slovenie-une-vingtaine-de-migrants-proches-de-la-suffocation-decouvert

  • #Denis_Salas : « La #justice se trouve confrontée à un phénomène totalement inédit »

    Pour le magistrat et président de l’association française pour l’histoire de la justice, "l’#état_d'urgence_sanitaire" instauré pour deux mois doit nous inciter à réfléchir aux #libertés_individuelles et au maintien du #débat_démocratique.

    La France est officiellement en "état d’urgence sanitaire" pour une durée de deux mois. La loi publiée ce mardi au Journal Officiel encadre notamment le #confinement décidé par le gouvernement mais également un certain nombre de mesures de #restriction_des_libertés. Denis Salas, magistrat, essayiste et président de l’association française pour l’histoire de la justice se penche sur le rôle dévolu à l’institution judiciaire, son rapport au pouvoir politique et s’interroge également sur cette remise en question des libertés individuelles dictée par la nécessité sanitaire.

    Denis Salas, quel rôle particulier incombe à l’institution judiciaire dans ce contexte de pandémie ?

    L’institution judiciaire tourne actuellement au ralenti. Les tribunaux sont pratiquement à l’arrêt, même si subsistent des audiences en urgence, comme les comparutions immédiates ou certaines audiences en matière civile. En matière de politique pénale, on voit apparaître ce que l’on pourrait appeler une #justice_prophylactique qui cherche à prévenir les risques à travers des notions juridiques nouvelles comme la #mise_en_danger_de_la_vie_d’autrui, #infraction utilisée pour tous ceux qui sortent sans autorisation ou encore des sanctions relatives au marché noir, par exemple pour ceux qui revendent des masques ou des caducées. De nouveaux #délits apparaissent pour violation des règles de confinement avec des peines d’#amende aggravées, voire des peines d’#emprisonnement de six mois en cas de réitération des infractions.

    D’un point de vue philosophique, je dirais que c’est un usage de la #fonction_dissuasive_de_la_peine qui consiste à afficher une volonté répressive mais l’application avec des tribunaux à l’arrêt se situe au second plan.

    Autrement dit, des mesures difficiles à mettre en œuvre ?

    Oui. Les tribunaux étant à l’arrêt, même si certaines urgences sont maintenues, je ne vois pas comment obtenir une application réaliste de ces infractions. Je pense donc que la fonction d’annonce de ces nouvelles infractions est en soi un but recherché par le législateur. On espère que cet affichage va dissuader des personnes de se comporter de manière illicite face au confinement : un moyen pénal d’obtenir la docilité de la population. La dissuasion reste une fonction classique de la peine mais en l’occurrence elle est pleinement utilisée pour obtenir la docilité de la population.

    J’ignore ce que diront les historiens plus tard mais je pense que c’est une forme de criminalité nouvelle en période de pandémie qui apparaît sur fond d’urgence sanitaire.

    La justice a-t-elle déjà été confrontée dans le passé à une situation similaire ?

    Concernant une pandémie, il faut remonter au XIXe siècle, à la grippe espagnole durant la Première Guerre mondiale, mais en France, à des périodes beaucoup plus anciennes, voire au Moyen Âge. La justice se trouve confrontée à un phénomène totalement inédit, ce qui explique les hésitations, les types de réponses qui sont apportées et son fonctionnement même qui peut en être affecté.

    Une justice confrontée néanmoins à un certain nombre de situations d’urgence : comparutions immédiates ou encore situations de violences conjugales ou familiales pour lesquelles les associations ont tiré la sonnette d’alarme.

    Nous verrons quel contentieux va nourrir les comparutions immédiates, sans doute un contentieux lié aux infractions au confinement : attroupements, déplacements abusifs, usage du marché noir pour revendre des masques ou d’autres produits de ce type. C’est un contentieux qui rappelle celui de l’Occupation. En travaillant sur la justice des "années sombres", nous y avions trouvé nombre d’affaires issues de la répression de la Résistance mais beaucoup d’autres de la répression du marché noir, une analogie que l’on retrouve aujourd’hui.

    Concernant les violences conjugales et familiales, les procès en cours d’assises, que ce soient viols ou « féminicides », sont reportés. Ce qui constitue une non-réponse à la situation de fait. Mais certains tribunaux maintiennent des permanences au civil où des Juges aux Affaires familiales (JAF) peuvent décider d’éloigner par exemple un mari violent. Il appartient aux magistrats d’apprécier l’urgence des situations.

    Sur la question de la détention, vous avez co-signé une tribune publiée par le journal Le Monde la semaine dernière.

    Il s’agit d’une question très préoccupante. Des révoltes ont eu lieu dans plusieurs prisons françaises, des mutineries en Italie, notamment à Naples. Dans ce texte commun, nous demandons la réduction des courtes peines par le biais de circulaires de politique pénale prises par la Chancellerie, le juge restant libre de prendre la décision, ou encore l’examen de la sortie en libération conditionnelle des détenus malades ou âgés, afin de réduire la surpopulation carcérale. D’autant que nous avons été condamnés récemment par la Cour Européenne des Droits de l’Homme. La situation s’avère surtout préoccupante dans les maisons d’arrêt, avec le problème de la détention provisoire dont l’on pourrait dépasser exceptionnellement les délais légaux vu l’état d’urgence. Mais n’y a-t-il pas une violation des droits constitutionnels liés aux libertés individuelles si l’on prolonge les détentions provisoires au-delà du délai fixé par la loi ? L’état d’urgence autorise-t-il de telles dérogations qui pourraient porter atteinte gravement aux libertés individuelles ?

    Les dispositions prévues dans le texte sur l’état d’urgence sanitaire publié au Journal Officiel peuvent faire l’objet d’un recours devant le juge administratif.

    On se demandait s’il n’y allait pas y avoir des recours « liberté » pour protester contre le confinement. Or, c’est l’inverse qui s’est produit avec ce recours devant le Conseil d’Etat, formulé par un syndicat de jeunes médecins qui réclamait un durcissement des mesures actuelles et un confinement total. Le juge n’est donc pas sollicité comme un défenseur des libertés mais comme un agent de durcissement des atteintes aux libertés. Et en l’occurrence, le Conseil d’Etat décide de ne pas aller jusqu’à un confinement total mais enjoint le gouvernement à durcir certaines dispositions, relatives à la pratique des activités sportives ou les marchés ouverts. Le Conseil d’Etat considère que c’est l’atteinte à la vie qui est en jeu, atteinte grave et manifeste à la sécurité et à la vie des personnes, article 2 de la Convention européenne des droits de l’homme.

    En fait, le juge ne se positionne pas par rapport aux libertés classiques d’aller et venir, actuellement très restreintes mais par rapport à une autre liberté fondamentale qui est l’atteinte à la vie. En cette période exceptionnelle, il se positionne non pas comme un agent de contrôle d’activités gouvernementales au nom des libertés en général mais comme un agent de défense de la société.

    La justice avait eu à traiter récemment d’un autre état d’urgence, celui lié à la menace terroriste en novembre 2015.

    Oui et on peut se poser cette question : allons-nous vers un état d’exception permanent ? Car les principales mesures de l’état d’urgence promulgué en 2015 sont depuis inscrites dans le droit commun. Questionnement soulevé par le philosophe italien Giorgio Agamben qui théorise l’état d’exception. Pour lui, nous vivons dans des sociétés confrontées au risque en permanence et la tentation des gouvernements peut être de s’installer dans un régime d’exception permanent afin de neutraliser ces risques. Le principe de précaution devient alors déterminant.

    Dans la vision d’un état d’exception permanent, il n’existe plus d’infractions, seulement des menaces, plus de délinquants mais des groupes-cibles, les personnes infectées par exemple et des territoires concernés. Il y a là quelque chose d’extrêmement périlleux pour les libertés.

    Il s’agit donc d’un risque important selon vous ?

    Le risque de pérenniser l’exception dans le droit existe parce que l’état d’exception s’étend considérablement pour des raisons légitimes évidemment. Il est limité par le fait que les institutions de contrôle subsistent et par la notion de proportionnalité. Toutes les mesures doivent être proportionnelles par rapport aux exigences sanitaires et des contre feux, des contre-pouvoirs peuvent être soulevés.

    Je voudrais citer l’exemple de la Corée du Sud qui ne pratique pas le confinement mais le dépistage massif et le traçage de la population dépistée, en repérant les cercles de proximité où la personne a pu contaminer ses proches. Le contrôle sanitaire ne porte que sur cette population à risque avec une géolocalisation, une traçabilité, une visibilité de tous ses déplacements, via une plateforme numérique. Cela a représenté un travail très long car il y a 51 millions d’habitants en Corée du Sud. La population vit dans la sécurité, l’activité économique globale continue. Le suivi des personnes confinées est extrêmement pointu et offre en même temps une visibilité à l’ensemble de la population. Quand on va travailler, on sait qui est contaminé, qui ne l’est pas, à proximité. On a donc un modèle alternatif de gestion de l’épidémie, opposé au confinement mais au prix d’une atteinte grave aux libertés individuelles pour une durée indéterminée.

    La lecture de Michel Foucault vous inspire également une réflexion particulière.

    Je suis en train de relire les Anormaux, un cours au Collège de France de 1975. Dans sa première leçon, il oppose deux grands modèles de leçon à l’épidémie : celui de la lèpre, dès le Moyen Âge, où l’on exclut les personnes infectées aux marches de la cité, et celui de la peste, à la fin du Moyen Âge, qui est à l’inverse un modèle d’inclusion. On n’exclut pas les malades des villes, on les garde avec nous, afin d’accumuler un savoir biomédical sur cette population ciblée afin de lutter contre l’épidémie. Cette fresque de Foucault est lumineuse pour expliquer dans quelle mesure nous sommes aujourd’hui dans le modèle de la peste, un modèle presque mondialisé. "La peste, écrit Foucault, c’est le moment où le quadrillage d’une population se fait jusqu’à son point extrême. Où rien des communications dangereuses, des communautés confuses, des contacts interdits, ne peut se produire. Le moment de la peste est celui du quadrillage exhaustif d’une population par un pouvoir politique dont les ramifications atteignent sans arrêt le grain des individus eux-mêmes, leur temps, leur habitat, leur localisation, leur corps. La peste porte aussi le rêve politique d’un pouvoir exhaustif, d’un pouvoir sans obstacle, d’un pouvoir entièrement transparent à son objet, d’un pouvoir qui s’exerce à plein."

    Cette citation explique ce que Foucault appelle la biopolitique. Actuellement, nous assistons à une médicalisation du pouvoir politique et judiciaire, y compris pour la politique pénale avec des savoirs médicaux, statistiques, juridiques, des mesures qui sont prises au nom d’une logique prophylactique afin d’éliminer le danger. Et ce que craint Foucault, c’est que cette biopolitique, cette gestion massive d’une population, au nom de sa santé, crée un pouvoir exorbitant des politiques où le savoir scientifique et le pouvoir politique s’additionnent. Au nom du bien public, bien sûr, mais c’est un pouvoir énorme qui se crée, un pouvoir disciplinaire qui s’étend à l’ensemble de la population.

    La lecture de Foucault, en cette période de pandémie, nous invite à nous interroger, à rester vigilants du point de vue des libertés car ce pouvoir démesuré accordé aux politiques et aux scientifiques sur notre vie quotidienne peut susciter des inquiétudes, même si sur le moment il est nécessaire. Tenons compte des avertissements de Michel Foucault et de son analyse. Il faut absolument que cet état d’urgence sanitaire soit limité dans le temps, contrôlé par le Parlement et le juge et qu’au lieu d’une seule liberté fondamentale, l’atteinte à la vie, l’ensemble des libertés soit considéré comme devant être protégé, que l’on recherche davantage l’adhésion de la population que sa soumission passive. Dans ce contexte d’atteinte massive aux libertés, au nom de l’état de nécessité sanitaire, il faut que le débat démocratique reste vivant.

    https://www.franceculture.fr/droit-justice/denis-salas-la-justice-se-trouve-confrontee-a-un-phenomene-totalement-
    #coronavirus #état_d'urgence #urgence #répression #dissuasion #docilité #criminalité #pandémie #histoire #comparutions_immédiates #marché_noir #tribunaux #prisons #détention #maisons_d’arrêt #détention_provisoire #confinement_total #atteinte_à_la_vie #état_d’exception_permanent #état_d’exception #Agamben #Giorgio_Agamben #principe_de_précaution #menaces #exception #proportionnalité #Corée_du_Sud #traçage #dépistage_massif #cercles_de_proximité #géolocalisation #contrôle_sanitaire #Michel_Foucault #Foucault #lèpre #peste #quadrillage #biopolitique #médicalisation #santé #savoir_scientifique #pouvoir_politique #bien_public #pouvoir_disciplinaire #débat_démocratique

    –---

    Citation pour @etraces :

    Je voudrais citer l’exemple de la Corée du Sud qui ne pratique pas le confinement mais le dépistage massif et le traçage de la population dépistée, en repérant les cercles de proximité où la personne a pu contaminer ses proches. Le contrôle sanitaire ne porte que sur cette population à risque avec une géolocalisation, une traçabilité, une visibilité de tous ses déplacements, via une plateforme numérique. Cela a représenté un travail très long car il y a 51 millions d’habitants en Corée du Sud. La population vit dans la sécurité, l’activité économique globale continue. Le suivi des personnes confinées est extrêmement pointu et offre en même temps une visibilité à l’ensemble de la population. Quand on va travailler, on sait qui est contaminé, qui ne l’est pas, à proximité. On a donc un modèle alternatif de gestion de l’épidémie, opposé au confinement mais au prix d’une atteinte grave aux libertés individuelles pour une durée indéterminée.

    • Dans le miroir obscur de la pandémie. L’état d’exception de la pandémie semble avoir accompli, au moins en partie, le rêve du capitalisme

      Je parlais avec un ami qui habite à Bergame, ville au Nord de l’Italie où j’ai vécu et étudié et qui est aujourd’hui l’une des plus affectées par l’épidémie du Coronavirus. Celui-là m’a décrit la situation comme « un épisode infini de Black Mirror ». Effectivement, il est difficile d’écarter la sensation que nous vivons une dystopie, comme celles qui sont représentées dans tant de séries du genre. Ce n’est pas un hasard si Black Mirror, peut-être la plus célèbre parmi ces séries, comporte le mot « miroir » dans son titre. Ses épisodes ne représentent pas un monde lointain – une époque distante, des galaxies éloignées, des univers parallèles – mais un futur proche de datation incertaine. À la fois étranges et familières, ses intrigues nous laissent imaginer à quoi mènerait le renforcement de tendances déjà présentes dans notre quotidien. Ce que nous vivons en ce moment peut être appréhendé de la même manière, la modification de nos habitudes semblant annoncer un futur déjà là. Que peut-on comprendre du monde où nous vivons à partir de cet « épisode infini » ? Les moments exceptionnels ou de crise peuvent aider à porter un regard critique sur ce que chacun considère comme « normal ». J’ai proposé ailleurs qu’on se regarde dans le « miroir de la terreur » pour mieux comprendre la société du capitalisme tardif qui avait engendré les formes nouvelles de terrorisme[1]. De façon analogue, je crois pertinent de réfléchir aux temps présents à partir de l’image en train de se former sur le miroir obscur de la pandémie.

      La situation nous invite à penser sur plusieurs plans : l’organisation politique, la reproduction économique, le rapport à la nature ou les usages de la science. Je veux problématiser ici seulement l’idée de « distanciation sociale », rapidement acceptée en tant que norme autour du globe, entraînant la progressive interdiction des rencontres et la normalisation d’une vie quotidienne menée en confinement. La situation pandémique repose sur une contradiction qu’il faut souligner. La rapide expansion de la maladie résulte des flux globaux qui ont unifié les populations à l’échelle planétaire. De la pandémie naît le paradoxe d’une population globale unifiée en un statut égal de confinement. Il y a, en somme, un isolement concret des individus dans un monde entièrement connecté. Ce paradoxe n’est pas un paradoxe exclusif de la pandémie, mais un paradoxe que la pandémie a mené à l’extrême, le rendant par là visible. En réalité, la dialectique entre séparation et unification (de ce qui est séparé) est à la base du développement du capitalisme occidental ayant unifié le globe.

      Guy Debord avait déjà remarqué cette contradiction structurante lorsqu’il a essayé de comprendre la phase « spectaculaire » du capitalisme, qui s’annonçait au siècle dernier. Ce qu’il a appelé la « Société du Spectacle » était une forme sociale basée sur le principe de la séparation. Ce qui a été souvent décrit comme une société de communication des masses pouvait être compris à l’inverse comme une société où la faculté de communiquer était massivement perdue. La communication au sens fort était l’apanage de la vie en communauté, un langage commun engendré par une existence en commun. Ce qui arrivait aux sociétés du capitalisme avancé était précisément le contraire. L’expansion dans l’espace – grandes villes, banlieues écartées, circulation économique globale – et la rationalisation du travail, à partir de l’hyperspécialisation des tâches individuelles, ont signifié l’éloignement concret entre les personnes et la perte de l’entendement commun, facteur amplifié par le monopole de l’Etat sur l’organisation de la vie collective. La disparition progressive de la communauté et de ses formes de communication était la condition préalable au surgissement des médias de masse – lesquels étaient le contraire des moyens de communication, puisqu’ils étaient fondés sur l’isolement réel croissant. Les millions de spectateurs prostrés devant des appareils télé, en consommant les mêmes images sans pouvoir s’en parler, restaient une figuration assez claire du fait que le spectacle, comme l’a écrit Debord, « réunit le séparé, mais il le réunit en tant que séparé » (§29). Certains croient que cette critique serait devenue désuète grâce à l’avènement de l’internet et des technologies qui en découlent. Au lieu de spectateurs prostrés devant les appareils télé d’hier, on aurait aujourd’hui des spectateurs « actifs », qui s’échangent des messages, produisent et diffusent leurs propres contenus. Mais la vérité est que rien dans le dernier demi-siècle n’a mis en question la séparation fondamentale sous-jacente au développement même des technologies de communication. La scène très habituelle d’amis autour d’une table de restaurant, qui au lieu de se parler regardent les écrans de ses propres portables, devrait suffire pour démontrer cette vérité. De nos jours, le séparé est réuni comme séparé là même où il occupe le même espace physique.

      Ce qui nous a été dérobé en ce moment de pandémie a été la possibilité de cohabiter l’espace physique. Dans les conditions présentes, l’interdiction des rencontres et l’obligation du confinement semblent plus aisément acceptables pour la population mondiale que ne l’auraient été l’interdiction ou une panne de l’internet ou des réseaux sociaux. Ironiquement, la « distanciation sociale » est maintenant revendiquée pour le sauvetage d’une société qui a toujours été fondée sur la distanciation. Le seul endroit de rencontre existant dans une société productrice de marchandise est, en vérité, le marché – c’est là que les marchandises entraînent par la main ses producteurs et consommateurs et c’est pour son compte que les hommes se rencontrent. C’est l’absence de ces rencontres, maintenant interdites, qui étonne tout le monde – la fermeture des espaces de travail et de consommation. Mais le capitalisme, qui était un rapport social médiatisé par des choses, s’est dédoublé dans un rapport social médiatisé par des images. Et il est désormais possible d’être dans un lieu sans y être. Il est possible de travailler (jusqu’à un certain degré) et consommer (sans limite) sans qu’on ait besoin de sortir de chez soi. Tout peut être à la portée de la main (ou plutôt du doigt qui touche l’écran), on peut tout avoir sans sortir de chez nous – la promesse du bonheur offert par le marché et réitéré par chaque publicité n’était-elle déjà la promesse d’une vie en confinement ?

      L’état d’exception de la pandémie semble alors avoir réalisé, au moins en partie, le rêve du capitalisme. Dans le cas où l’épisode dystopique que nous vivons en ce moment se révèle un « épisode infini », il serait aisé d’imaginer une population totalement habituée aux rapports virtuels, au confinement nourri par Netflix et les services de livraison. Les voyages seraient interdits, restreints aux flux des marchandises, fruit d’un secteur productif majoritairement automatisé. Le spectacle, qui depuis longtemps s’efforçait de détruire la rue, d’abolir la rencontre et de faire disparaître tous les espaces de dialogue – pour anéantir les alternatives à la pseudo-communication spectaculaire – aurait finalement atteint son but. L’espace réel, délaissé par les êtres humains confinés et obligés de s’enfuir dans la virtualité, n’appartiendrait plus qu’aux marchandises. La circulation humaine, « sous-produit de la circulation des marchandises », serait finalement devenue superflue, et le monde en entier livré aux « marchandises et leurs passions » (Debord, §168 et §66).

      Ceci n’est qu’un exercice d’imagination – un scénario improbable pour l’instant. Il est aisé d’anticiper pourtant que dans l’avenir nous assisterons à une augmentation du contrôle des flux globaux et de la circulation de personnes sous des prétextes sanitaires, avec une progressive normalisation des procédés d’exception actuels (de façon analogue à ce que nous avons connu pour le terrorisme après le 11 septembre 2001). De toute façon, faire des pronostics dans un contexte tellement incertain est toujours hasardeux. Mais le moment demande de la réflexion et penser à ce qu’on connaît est ce qu’on peut faire de mieux. Ce que nous ressentons comme le moins problématique en ce moment est sans doute ce qui exige précisément d’être problématisé. Reste à espérer que la distanciation sociale se convertisse en distanciation ou « effet de distanciation » (Verfremdungseffekt) dans le sens attribué par Brecht – celui de rupture avec la représentation autonomisée de la société du spectacle et ses illusions (dont la plus grande de toutes : celle de l’économie capitaliste, reproduction insensée et incessante de valeur abstraite en dépit de la vie). Une distanciation par rapport à cette forme de société : une occasion nécessaire pour repenser de manière critique les séparations qui la fondent, et les limites imposées par le capitalisme à la vie quotidienne.

      Mars 2020.

      #Gabriel_Zacarias est MCF à l’Université de Campinas au Brésil.

      http://www.palim-psao.fr/2020/04/dans-le-miroir-obscur-de-la-pandemie.l-etat-d-exception-de-la-pandemie-se

  • Comment l’Europe contrôle ses frontières en #Tunisie ?

    Entre les multiples programmes de coopération, les accords bilatéraux, les #équipements fournis aux #gardes-côtes, les pays européens et l’Union européenne investissent des millions d’euros en Tunisie pour la migration. Sous couvert de coopération mutuelle et de “#promotion_de_la mobilité”, la priorité des programmes migratoires européens est avant tout l’externalisation des frontières. En clair.

    À la fois pays de transit et pays de départ, nœud dans la région méditerranéenne, la Tunisie est un partenaire privilégié de l’Europe dans le cadre de ses #politiques_migratoires. L’Union européenne ou les États qui la composent -Allemagne, France, Italie, Belgique, etc.- interviennent de multiples manières en Tunisie pour servir leurs intérêts de protéger leurs frontières et lutter contre l’immigration irrégulière.

    Depuis des années, de multiples accords pour réadmettre les Tunisien·nes expulsé·es d’Europe ou encore financer du matériel aux #gardes-côtes_tunisiens sont ainsi signés, notamment avec l’#Italie ou encore avec la #Belgique. En plus de ces #partenariats_bilatéraux, l’#Union_européenne utilise ses fonds dédiés à la migration pour financer de nombreux programmes en Tunisie dans le cadre du “#partenariat_pour_la_mobilité”. Dans les faits, ces programmes servent avant tout à empêcher les gens de partir et les pousser à rester chez eux.

    L’ensemble de ces programmes mis en place avec les États européens et l’UE sont nombreux et difficiles à retracer. Dans d’autres pays, notamment au Nigeria, des journalistes ont essayé de compiler l’ensemble de ces flux financiers européens pour la migration. Dans leur article, Ils et elle soulignent la difficulté, voire l’impossibilité de véritablement comprendre tous les fonds, programmes et acteurs de ces financements.

    “C’est profondément préoccupant”, écrivent Maite Vermeulen, Ajibola Amzat et Giacomo Zandonini. “Bien que l’Europe maintienne un semblant de transparence, il est pratiquement impossible dans les faits de tenir l’UE et ses États membres responsables de leurs dépenses pour la migration, et encore moins d’évaluer leur efficacité.”

    En Tunisie, où les investissements restent moins importants que dans d’autres pays de la région comme en Libye, il a été possible d’obtenir un résumé, fourni par la Délégation de l’Union européenne, des programmes financés par l’UE et liés à la migration. Depuis 2016, cela se traduit par l’investissement de près de 58 millions d’euros à travers trois différents fonds : le #FFU (#Fonds_Fiduciaire_d’Urgence) de la Valette, l’#AMIF (Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund) et l’Instrument européen de voisinage (enveloppe régionale).

    Mais il est à noter que ces informations ne prennent pas en compte les autres investissements d’#aide_au_développement ou de soutien à la #lutte_antiterroriste dont les programmes peuvent également concerner la migration. Depuis 2011, au niveau bilatéral, l’Union européenne a ainsi investi 2,5 billions d’euros en Tunisie, toutes thématiques confondues.

    L’écrasante majorité de ces financements de l’UE - 54 200 000 euros - proviennent du #Fond_fiduciaire_d'urgence_pour_l'Afrique. Lancé en 2015, lors du #sommet_de_la_Valette, ce FFU a été créé “en faveur de la stabilité et de la lutte contre les #causes_profondes de la migration irrégulière et du phénomène des personnes déplacées en Afrique” à hauteur de 2 milliards d’euros pour toute la région.

    Ce financement a été pointé du doigt par des associations de droits humains comme Oxfam qui souligne “qu’une partie considérable de ses fonds est investie dans des mesures de #sécurité et de #gestion_des_frontières.”

    “Ces résultats montrent que l’approche des bailleurs de fonds européens vis-à-vis de la gestion des migrations est bien plus axée sur des objectifs de #confinement et de #contrôle. Cette approche est loin de l’engagement qu’ils ont pris (...) de ‘promouvoir des canaux réguliers de migration et de mobilité au départ des pays d’Europe et d’Afrique et entre ceux-ci’ (...) ou de ‘Faciliter la migration et la mobilité de façon ordonnée, sans danger, régulière et responsable’”, détaille plus loin le rapport.

    Surveiller les frontières

    Parmi la vingtaine de projets financés par l’UE, la sécurité des frontières occupe une place prépondérante. Le “#Programme_de_gestion_des_frontières_au_Maghreb” (#BMP_Maghreb) est, de loin, le plus coûteux. Pour fournir de l’équipement et des formations aux gardes-côtes tunisiens, l’UE investit 20 millions d’euros, près d’un tiers du budget en question.

    Le projet BMP Maghreb a un objectif clairement défini : protéger, surveiller et contrôler les #frontières_maritimes dans le but de réduire l’immigration irrégulière. Par exemple, trois chambres d’opération ainsi qu’un système pilote de #surveillance_maritime (#ISmariS) ont été fournis à la garde nationale tunisienne. En collaboration avec le ministère de l’Intérieur et ses différents corps - garde nationale, douane, etc. -, ce programme est géré par l’#ICMPD (#Centre_international_pour_le_développement_des_politiques_migratoires).

    “Le BMP Maghreb est mis en place au #Maroc et en Tunisie. C’est essentiellement de l’acquisition de matériel : matériel informatique, de transmission demandé par l’Etat tunisien”, détaille Donya Smida de l’ICMPD. “On a fait d’abord une première analyse des besoins, qui est complétée ensuite par les autorités tunisiennes”.

    Cette fourniture de matériel s’ajoute à des #formations dispensées par des #experts_techniques, encore une fois coordonnées par l’ICMPD. Cette organisation internationale se présente comme spécialisée dans le “renforcement de capacités” dans le domaine de la politique migratoire, “loin des débat émotionnels et politisés”.

    "Cette posture est symptomatique d’un glissement sémantique plus général. Traiter la migration comme un sujet politique serait dangereux, alors on préfère la “gérer” comme un sujet purement technique. In fine, la ’gestionnaliser’ revient surtout à dépolitiser la question migratoire", commente #Camille_Cassarini, chercheur sur les migrations subsahariennes en Tunisie. “L’ICMPD, ce sont des ‘techniciens’ de la gestion des frontières. Ils dispensent des formations aux États grâce à un réseau d’experts avec un maître-mot : #neutralité politique et idéologique et #soutien_technique."

    En plus de ce programme, la Tunisie bénéficie d’autres fonds et reçoit aussi du matériel pour veiller à la sécurité des frontières. Certains s’inscrivent dans d’autres projets financés par l’UE, comme dans le cadre de la #lutte_antiterroriste.

    Il faut aussi ajouter à cela les équipements fournis individuellement par les pays européens dans le cadre de leurs #accords_bilatéraux. En ce qui concerne la protection des frontières, on peut citer l’exemple de l’Italie qui a fourni une douzaine de bateaux à la Tunisie en 2011. En 2017, l’Italie a également soutenu la Tunisie à travers un projet de modernisation de bateaux de patrouille fournis à la garde nationale tunisienne pour environ 12 millions d’euros.

    L’#Allemagne est aussi un investisseur de plus en plus important, surtout en ce qui concerne les frontières terrestres. Entre 2015 et 2016, elle a contribué à la création d’un centre régional pour la garde nationale et la police des frontières. A la frontière tuniso-libyenne, elle fournit aussi des outils de surveillance électronique tels que des caméras thermiques, des paires de jumelles nocturnes, etc…

    L’opacité des #accords_bilatéraux

    De nombreux pays européens - Allemagne, Italie, #France, Belgique, #Autriche, etc. - coopèrent ainsi avec la Tunisie en concluant de nombreux accords sur la migration. Une grande partie de cette coopération concerne la #réadmission des expulsé·es tunisien·nes. Avec l’Italie, quatre accords ont ainsi été signés en ce sens entre 1998 et 2011. D’après le FTDES* (Forum tunisien des droits économiques et sociaux), c’est dans le cadre de ce dernier accord que la Tunisie accueillerait deux avions par semaine à l’aéroport d’Enfidha de Tunisien·nes expulsé·es depuis Palerme.

    “Ces accords jouent beaucoup sur le caractère réciproque mais dans les faits, il y a un rapport inégal et asymétrique. En termes de réadmission, il est évident que la majorité des #expulsions concernent les Tunisiens en Europe”, commente Jean-Pierre Cassarino, chercheur et spécialiste des systèmes de réadmission.

    En pratique, la Tunisie ne montre pas toujours une volonté politique d’appliquer les accords en question. Plusieurs pays européens se plaignent de la lenteur des procédures de réadmissions de l’Etat tunisien avec qui “les intérêts ne sont pas vraiment convergents”.

    Malgré cela, du côté tunisien, signer ces accords est un moyen de consolider des #alliances. “C’est un moyen d’apparaître comme un partenaire fiable et stable notamment dans la lutte contre l’extrémisme religieux, l’immigration irrégulière ou encore la protection extérieure des frontières européennes, devenus des thèmes prioritaires depuis environ la moitié des années 2000”, explique Jean-Pierre Cassarino.

    Toujours selon les chercheurs, depuis les années 90, ces accords bilatéraux seraient devenus de plus en plus informels pour éviter de longues ratifications au niveau bilatéral les rendant par conséquent, plus opaques.

    Le #soft_power : nouvel outil d’externalisation

    Tous ces exemples montrent à quel point la question de la protection des frontières et de la #lutte_contre_l’immigration_irrégulière sont au cœur des politiques européennes. Une étude de la direction générale des politiques externes du Parlement européen élaborée en 2016 souligne comment l’UE “a tendance à appuyer ses propres intérêts dans les accords, comme c’est le cas pour les sujets liés à l’immigration.” en Tunisie.

    Le rapport pointe du doigt la contradiction entre le discours de l’UE qui, depuis 2011, insiste sur sa volonté de soutenir la Tunisie dans sa #transition_démocratique, notamment dans le domaine migratoire, tandis qu’en pratique, elle reste focalisée sur le volet sécuritaire.

    “La coopération en matière de sécurité demeure fortement centrée sur le contrôle des flux de migration et la lutte contre le terrorisme” alors même que “la rhétorique de l’UE en matière de questions de sécurité (...) a évolué en un discours plus large sur l’importance de la consolidation de l’État de droit et de la garantie de la protection des droits et des libertés acquis grâce à la révolution.”, détaille le rapport.

    Mais même si ces projets ont moins de poids en termes financiers, l’UE met en place de nombreux programmes visant à “développer des initiatives socio-économiques au niveau local”, “ mobiliser la diaspora” ou encore “sensibiliser sur les risques liés à la migration irrégulière”. La priorité est de dissuader en amont les potentiel·les candidat·es à l’immigration irrégulière, au travers de l’appui institutionnel, des #campagnes de #sensibilisation...

    L’#appui_institutionnel, présenté comme une priorité par l’UE, constitue ainsi le deuxième domaine d’investissement avec près de 15% des fonds.

    Houda Ben Jeddou, responsable de la coopération internationale en matière de migration à la DGCIM du ministère des Affaires sociales, explique que le projet #ProgreSMigration, créé en 2016 avec un financement à hauteur de 12,8 millions d’euros, permet de mettre en place “ des ateliers de formations”, “des dispositifs d’aides au retour” ou encore “des enquêtes statistiques sur la migration en Tunisie”.

    Ce projet est en partenariat avec des acteurs étatiques tunisiens comme le ministère des Affaires Sociales, l’observatoire national des migrations (ONM) ou encore l’Institut national de statistiques (INS). L’un des volets prioritaires est de “soutenir la #Stratégie_nationale_migratoire_tunisienne”. Pour autant, ce type de projet ne constitue pas une priorité pour les autorités tunisiennes et cette stratégie n’a toujours pas vu le jour.

    Houda Ben Jeddou explique avoir déposé un projet à la présidence en 2018, attendant qu’elle soit validée. "Il n’y a pas de volonté politique de mettre ce dossier en priorité”, reconnaît-elle.

    Pour Camille Cassarini, ce blocage est assez révélateur de l’absence d’une politique cohérente en Tunisie. “Cela en dit long sur les stratégies de contournement que met en place l’État tunisien en refusant de faire avancer le sujet d’un point de vue politique. Malgré les investissements européens pour pousser la Tunisie à avoir une politique migratoire correspondant à ses standards, on voit que les agendas ne sont pas les mêmes à ce niveau”.

    Changer la vision des migrations

    Pour mettre en place tous ces programmes, en plus des partenariats étatiques avec la Tunisie, l’Europe travaille en étroite collaboration avec les organisations internationales telles que l’#OIM (Organisation internationale pour les migrations), l’ICMPD et le #UNHCR (Haut Commissariat des Nations unies pour les réfugiés), les agences de développement européennes implantées sur le territoire - #GiZ, #Expertise_France, #AfD - ainsi que la société civile tunisienne.

    Dans ses travaux, Camille Cassarini montre que les acteurs sécuritaires sont progressivement assistés par des acteurs humanitaires qui s’occupent de mener une politique gestionnaire de la migration, cohérente avec les stratégies sécuritaires. “Le rôle de ces organisations internationales, type OIM, ICMPD, etc., c’est principalement d’effectuer un transfert de normes et pratiques qui correspondent à des dispositifs de #contrôle_migratoire que les Etats européens ne peuvent pas mettre directement en oeuvre”, explique-t-il.

    Contactée à plusieurs reprises par Inkyfada, la Délégation de l’Union européenne en Tunisie a répondu en fournissant le document détaillant leurs projets dans le cadre de leur partenariat de mobilité avec la Tunisie. Elle n’a pas souhaité donner suite aux demandes d’entretiens.

    En finançant ces organisations, les Etats européens ont d’autant plus de poids dans leur orientation politique, affirme encore le chercheur en donnant l’exemple de l’OIM, une des principales organisations actives en Tunisie dans ce domaine. “De par leurs réseaux, ces organisations sont devenues des acteurs incontournables. En Tunisie, elles occupent un espace organisationnel qui n’est pas occupé par l’Etat tunisien. Ça arrange plus ou moins tout le monde : les Etats européens ont des acteurs qui véhiculent leur vision des migrations et l’État tunisien a un acteur qui s’en occupe à sa place”.

    “Dans notre langage académique, on les appelle des #acteurs_épistémologiques”, ajoute Jean-Pierre Cassarino. A travers leur langage et l’étendue de leur réseau, ces organisations arrivent à imposer une certaine vision de la gestion des migrations en Tunisie. “Il n’y a qu’à voir le #lexique de la migration publié sur le site de l’Observatoire national [tunisien] des migrations : c’est une copie de celui de l’OIM”, continue-t-il.

    Contactée également par Inkyfada, l’OIM n’a pas donné suite à nos demandes d’entretien.

    Camille Cassarini donne aussi l’exemple des “#retours_volontaires”. L’OIM ou encore l’Office français de l’immigration (OFII) affirment que ces programmes permettent “la réinsertion sociale et économique des migrants de retour de façon à garantir la #dignité des personnes”. “Dans la réalité, la plupart des retours sont très mal ou pas suivis. On les renvoie au pays sans ressource et on renforce par là leur #précarité_économique et leur #vulnérabilité", affirme-t-il. “Et tous ces mots-clés euphémisent la réalité d’une coopération et de programmes avant tout basé sur le contrôle migratoire”.

    Bien que l’OIM existe depuis près de 20 ans en Tunisie, Camille Cassarini explique que ce système s’est surtout mis en place après la Révolution, notamment avec la société civile. “La singularité de la Tunisie, c’est sa transition démocratique : l’UE a dû adapter sa politique migratoire à ce changement politique et cela est passé notamment par la promotion de la société civile”.

    Dans leur ouvrage à paraître “Externaliser la gouvernance migratoire à travers la société tunisienne : le cas de la Tunisie” [Externalising Migration Governance through Civil Society : Tunisia as a Case Study], Sabine Didi et Caterina Giusa expliquent comment les programmes européens et les #organisations_internationales ont été implantées à travers la #société_civile.

    “Dans le cas des projets liés à la migration, le rôle déterminant de la société civile apparaît au niveau micro, en tant qu’intermédiaire entre les organisations chargées de la mise en œuvre et les différents publics catégorisés et identifiés comme des ‘#migrants_de_retour’, ‘membres de la diaspora’, ou ‘candidats potentiels à la migration irrégulière’", explique Caterina Giusa dans cet ouvrage, “L’intérêt d’inclure et et de travailler avec la société civile est de ‘faire avaler la pilule’ [aux populations locales]”.

    “Pour résumer, tous ces projets ont pour but de faire en sorte que les acteurs tunisiens aient une grille de lecture du phénomène migratoire qui correspondent aux intérêts de l’Union européenne. Et concrètement, ce qui se dessine derrière cette vision “gestionnaire”, c’est surtout une #injonction_à_l’immobilité”, termine Camille Cassarini.

    https://inkyfada.com/fr/2020/03/20/financements-ue-tunisie-migration
    #externalisation #asile #migrations #frontières #Tunisie #EU #UE #Europe #contrôles_frontaliers #politique_de_voisinage #dissuasion #IOM #HCR #immobilité

    Ajouté à la métaliste sur l’externalisation des frontières :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/731749#message765330

    Et celle sur la conditionnalité de l’aide au développement :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/733358#message768701

    ping @karine4 @isskein @_kg_

  • Hongrie : des #tirs de sommation pour dissuader des dizaines de migrants à la frontière avec la #Serbie

    Plusieurs dizaines de migrants ont tenté, mardi, de forcer la frontière grillagée serbo-hongroise afin de gagner l’Europe de l’Ouest. La police hongroise a répondu par des tirs de sommation pour les dissuader. Fait “rarissime” qui traduit un nouvel afflux sur la route migratoire des Balkans qui n’était quasi plus empruntée depuis 2015, explique un spécialiste.

    “De jeunes hommes organisés et agressifs”. C’est ainsi que les autorités hongroises ont décrit le groupe de 60 à 70 migrants qui a tenté de franchir la frontière entre la Serbie et la Hongrie, au petit matin du mardi 28 janvier. “C’est la première fois qu’un groupe de cette envergure est interpellé après avoir découpé les grillages” de cette frontière, indique Peter Van der Auweraert, le représentant de l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations (OIM), contacté par InfoMigrants. L’incident s’est produit précisément au niveau du poste-frontière d’#Horgos 2 près de la ville hongroise de #Röszke.

    Les forces de l’ordre sur place ont procédé à des #tirs_de_sommation afin de dissuader les migrants d’entrer en Hongrie. “C’est aussi une première à notre connaissance”, souligne l’OIM. Joint également par InfoMigrants, Philippe Bertinchamps, rédacteur en chef adjoint du Courrier des Balkans et spécialiste de la zone, confirme la rareté du geste. “Je ne suis toutefois pas surpris”, nuance-t-il. “La #police hongroise s’est déjà fait connaître par le passé pour des faits de violences envers les migrants, il y a des témoignages de personnes battues ou des téléphones volontairement cassés, par exemple.”

    D’après l’OIM, une quarantaine de migrants a été immédiatement renvoyée de l’autre côté de la frontière, en Serbie. Quatre hommes ont également été interpellés sur le territoire hongrois et placés en garde à vue. D"autres" sont parvenus à entrer en Hongrie, a indiqué à l’AFP un porte parole de la police locale, sans donner de précision sur le chiffre. Côté serbe, la police frontalière a intercepté “37 migrants qui tentaient de franchir illégalement la frontière pour pénétrer en Hongrie aux alentours de 5h du matin”, a sobrement déclaré le ministère de l’Intérieur.

    Explosion du nombre de tentatives de passages à la frontière serbo-hongroise

    Située sur la route migratoire dite des Balkans ainsi que sur l’une des frontières extérieures de l’espace Schengen, la Hongrie a érigé dès 2015 des clôtures partiellement électrifiées rendant le franchissement de ses frontières beaucoup plus périlleux pour les migrants espérant rejoindre l’Europe de l’Ouest. “Cette route s’était nettement tarie, mais de plus en plus de migrants actuellement bloqués en Bosnie sont brutalement refoulés par la police croate. Les conditions de vie étant infernales en Bosnie et le passage impossible vers la Croatie, les migrants se mettent naturellement à retenter l’ancienne route des Balkans via la Hongrie”, analyse Philippe Bertinchamps.

    Les chiffres parlent d’eux mêmes : quelque 3 400 tentatives de passages clandestins ont eu lieu depuis le début de l’année, a affirmé lors d’une conférence de presse mardi, Gyorgy Bakondi, le conseiller du Premier ministre souverainiste Viktor Orban. Il s’agit d’une très forte hausse comparativement à 2019 dont la moyenne mensuelle des tentatives de passages était d’environ un millier.

    Dirigé par une majorité politique hostile à l’accueil de réfugiés, le gouvernement hongrois n’a eu de cesse de marteler ces dernières années que les candidats à l’exil se devaient de déposer leur demande d’asile dans le premier pays européen par lequel ils sont passés, en vertu du Règlement Dublin qu’une partie des pays membres de l’Union européenne veut réformer pour plus plus d’équité. Mais la Hongrie s’y oppose fermement et refoule systématiquement vers la Serbie les candidats arrivant par voie terrestre. Elle refuse également d’accueillir sur son sol les rescapés de la Méditerranée qui font désormais l’objet d’un mécanisme de répartition européen entre certains des États membres.

    https://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/22420/hongrie-des-tirs-de-sommation-pour-dissuader-des-dizaines-de-migrants-
    #Hongrie #frontières #migrations #asile #réfugiés #Route_des_Balkans #dissuasion #push-backs #push-back #refoulement
    #armes #armes_à_feu #arme_à_feu

  • Why ’stronger borders’ don’t work

    Thousands of people die annually trying to cross borders. It’s often argued stronger borders and more checks would deter people from making dangerous crossings. But how accurate is this? Maya Goodfellow explores what the current border regime means for people seeking asylum

    https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/video/2020/jan/21/why-stronger-borders-dont-work
    #fermeture_des_frontières #asile #migrations #réfugiés #walls_don't_work #dissuasion #frontières #problème #solution #vidéo #externalisation #vulnérabilité #danger #péril #militarisation_des_frontières #ressources_pédagogiques #pull_factor #facteur_pull #stéréotypes #préjugés #pull-factor #audition #voies_légales #réinstallation

    Cette carte


    #cartographie #visualisation #frontières_intérieures #Schengen (fin de -)
    ping @karine4 @isskein

  • #Côte_d’Ivoire : World-Renowned Photojournalist Reza Trains #Returned_Migrants, Journalists in Photography

    “Photography is a universal language which can help express feelings and convey emotions without using words,” said #Reza_Deghati, the internationally acclaimed news photographer, who began his celebrated career 40 years ago, after he left his native Iran.

    This month, he is sharing his expertise, and his enthusiasm, with migrants returning to their African homeland after hard journeys abroad. “Photography allows returnees to gain self-confidence and rediscover themselves,” he explained. “Learning how to take a good picture of their daily lives helps them value their life and show us their side of their own story.”

    During the dates 6-8 December, Reza Deghati worked in collaboration with the International Organization for Migration (#IOM) which organized a three-day photography training event in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. Six young photographers participated in the training here in the Ivorian capital.

    After learning the technical aspects of photography, the participants trained their newly acquired skills on by visiting reintegration and recreational activities organized by IOM for returned migrants and community members. For instance, the participants attended a street art painting performed by returned migrants on the walls of a school rehabilitated by other returnees.

    The aim of this pilot project was to offer returned migrants an opportunity to become visual storytellers of their daily life back home and help local journalists change the narrative on migration in the country.

    “I couldn’t finish the first level of high school last year because I left for Algeria,” said 17-year-old Laciné who now is back at school as part of the reintegration assistance he received from IOM after returning to Côte d’Ivoire.

    “For me, this training is a new start as it can help me show others what I have experienced and what I am experiencing without using words,” Laciné explained.

    The training will be followed by a three-month coaching by IOM photographer Mohamed Diabaté, and the photographs taken by the participants will be exhibited in Spring 2020.

    “Learning photography means learning to look at the world in a different way,” Diabaté said. The IOM Côte d’Ivoire photographer and filmmaker added: “It also gives a new dimension to the returnees’ daily lives and it shows a reality that someone else cannot grasp. It enables us to see through their eyes.”

    This training is the first of a series that will be organized by IOM across West Africa in 2020. It was organized in the frame of an EU-IOM Joint Initiative for Migrant Protection and Reintegration in the Sahel and Lake Chad regions.

    One participant, reporter Benjamin B., explained what he gained from the sessions with Reza Deghati this way: “As a journalist, I have a pen, and I can write. Words can explain reality. But the pictures will show it. If I have both skills, I can better write about migration.”

    https://www.iom.int/news/cote-divoire-world-renowned-photojournalist-reza-trains-returned-migrants-journ
    #photographie #photojournalisme #asile #migrations #réfugiés #renvois #réfugiés_ivoiriens #réintégration #OIM #returnees #expulsion #art #Mohamed_Diabaté #cours_de_photo #Afrique_de_l'Ouest

    Il n’y a pas de limites à l’indécence de l’OIM :

    The aim of this pilot project was to offer returned migrants an opportunity to become visual storytellers of their daily life back home and help local journalists change the narrative on migration in the country.
    This training is the first of a series that will be organized by IOM across West Africa in 2020. It was organized in the frame of an #EU-IOM_Joint_Initiative_for_Migrant_Protection_and_Reintegration_in_the_Sahel_and_Lake_Chad_regions (https://migrationjointinitiative.org).

    ping @albertocampiphoto @philippe_de_jonckheere @_kg_ @isskein @karine4 @reka

    Ajouté à cette métaliste sur les campagnes de #dissuasion à l’émigration (intégré à la métaliste plus générale sur l’externalisation des frontières) :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/731749#message765326

  • The business of building walls

    Thirty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Europe is once again known for its border walls. This time Europe is divided not so much by ideology as by perceived fear of refugees and migrants, some of the world’s most vulnerable people.

    Who killed the dream of a more open Europe? What gave rise to this new era of walls? There are clearly many reasons – the increasing displacement of people by conflict, repression and impoverishment, the rise of security politics in the wake of 9/11, the economic and social insecurity felt across Europe after the 2008 financial crisis – to name a few. But one group has by far the most to gain from the rise of new walls – the businesses that build them. Their influence in shaping a world of walls needs much deeper examination.

    This report explores the business of building walls, which has both fuelled and benefited from a massive expansion of public spending on border security by the European Union (EU) and its member states. Some of the corporate beneficiaries are also global players, tapping into a global market for border security estimated to be worth approximately €17.5 billion in 2018, with annual growth of at least 8% expected in coming years.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CAuv1QyP8l0&feature=emb_logo

    It is important to look both beyond and behind Europe’s walls and fencing, because the real barriers to contemporary migration are not so much the fencing, but the vast array of technology that underpins it, from the radar systems to the drones to the surveillance cameras to the biometric fingerprinting systems. Similarly, some of Europe’s most dangerous walls are not even physical or on land. The ships, aircrafts and drones used to patrol the Mediterranean have created a maritime wall and a graveyard for the thousands of migrants and refugees who have no legal passage to safety or to exercise their right to seek asylum.

    This renders meaningless the European Commission’s publicized statements that it does not fund walls and fences. Commission spokesperson Alexander Winterstein, for example, rejecting Hungary’s request to reimburse half the costs of the fences built on its borders with Croatia and Serbia, said: ‘We do support border management measures at external borders. These can be surveillance measures. They can be border control equipment...But fences, we do not finance’. In other words, the Commission is willing to pay for anything that fortifies a border as long as it is not seen to be building the walls themselves.

    This report is a sequel to Building Walls – Fear and securitization in the European Union, co-published in 2018 with Centre Delàs and Stop Wapenhandel, which first measured and identified the walls that criss-cross Europe. This new report focuses on the businesses that have profited from three different kinds of wall in Europe:

    The construction companies contracted to build the land walls built by EU member states and the Schengen Area together with the security and technology companies that provide the necessary accompanying technology, equipment and services;

    The shipping and arms companies that provide the ships, aircraft, helicopters, drones that underpin Europe’s maritime walls seeking to control migratory flows in the Mediterranean, including Frontex operations, Operation Sophia and Italian operation Mare Nostrum;
    And the IT and security companies contracted to develop, run, expand and maintain EU’s systems that monitor the movement of people – such as SIS II (Schengen Information System) and EES (Entry/Exit Scheme) – which underpin Europe’s virtual walls.

    Booming budgets

    The flow of money from taxpayers to wall-builders has been highly lucrative and constantly growing. The report finds that companies have reaped the profits from at least €900 million spent by EU countries on land walls and fences since the end of the Cold War. The partial data (in scope and years) means actual costs will be at least €1 billion. In addition, companies that provide technology and services that accompany walls have also benefited from some of the steady stream of funding from the EU – in particular the External Borders Fund (€1.7 billion, 2007-2013) and the Internal Security Fund – Borders Fund (€2.76 billion, 2014-2020).

    EU spending on maritime walls has totalled at least €676.4 million between 2006 to 2017 (including €534 million spent by Frontex, €28.4 million spent by the EU on Operation Sophia and €114 million spent by Italy on Operation Mare Nostrum) and would be much more if you include all the operations by Mediterranean country coastguards. Total spending on Europe’s virtual wall equalled at least €999.4m between 2000 and 2019. (All these estimates are partial ones because walls are funded by many different funding mechanisms and due to lack of data transparency).

    This boom in border budgets is set to grow. Under its budget for the next EU budget cycle (2021–2027) the European Commission has earmarked €8.02 billion to its Integrated Border Management Fund (2021-2027), €11.27bn to Frontex (of which €2.2 billion will be used for acquiring, maintaining and operating air, sea and land assets) and at least €1.9 billion total spending (2000-2027) on its identity databases and Eurosur (the European Border Surveillance System).
    The big arm industry players

    Three giant European military and security companies in particular play a critical role in Europe’s many types of borders. These are Thales, Leonardo and Airbus.

    Thales is a French arms and security company, with a significant presence in the Netherlands, that produces radar and sensor systems, used by many ships in border security. Thales systems, were used, for example, by Dutch and Portuguese ships deployed in Frontex operations. Thales also produces maritime surveillance systems for drones and is working on developing border surveillance infrastructure for Eurosur, researching how to track and control refugees before they reach Europe by using smartphone apps, as well as exploring the use of High Altitude Pseudo Satellites (HAPS) for border security, for the European Space Agency and Frontex. Thales currently provides the security system for the highly militarised port in Calais. Its acquisition in 2019 of Gemalto, a large (biometric) identity security company, makes it a significant player in the development and maintenance of EU’s virtual walls. It has participated in 27 EU research projects on border security.
    Italian arms company Leonardo (formerly Finmeccanica or Leonardo-Finmeccanica) is a leading supplier of helicopters for border security, used by Italy in the Mare Nostrum, Hera and Sophia operations. It has also been one of the main providers of UAVs (or drones) for Europe’s borders, awarded a €67.1 million contract in 2017 by the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) to supply them for EU coast-guard agencies. Leonardo was also a member of a consortium, awarded €142.1 million in 2019 to implement and maintain EU’s virtual walls, namely its EES. It jointly owns Telespazio with Thales, involved in EU satellite observation projects (REACT and Copernicus) used for border surveillance. Leonardo has participated in 24 EU research projects on border security and control, including the development of Eurosur.
    Pan-European arms giant Airbus is a key supplier of helicopters used in patrolling maritime and some land borders, deployed by Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Lithuania and Spain, including in maritime Operations Sophia, Poseidon and Triton. Airbus and its subsidiaries have participated in at least 13 EU-funded border security research projects including OCEAN2020, PERSEUS and LOBOS.
    The significant role of these arms companies is not surprising. As Border Wars (2016), showed these companies through their membership of the lobby groups – European Organisation for Security (EOS) and the AeroSpace and Defence Industries Association of Europe (ASD) – have played a significant role in influencing the direction of EU border policy. Perversely, these firms are also among the top four biggest European arms dealers to the Middle East and North Africa, thus contributing to the conflicts that cause forced migration.

    Indra has been another significant corporate player in border control in Spain and the Mediterranean. It won a series of contracts to fortify Ceuta and Melilla (Spanish enclaves in northern Morocco). Indra also developed the SIVE border control system (with radar, sensors and vision systems), which is in place on most of Spain’s borders, as well as in Portugal and Romania. In July 2018 it won a €10 million contract to manage SIVE at several locations for two years. Indra is very active in lobbying the EU and is a major beneficiary of EU research funding, coordinating the PERSEUS project to further develop Eurosur and the Seahorse Network, a network between police forces in Mediterranean countries (both in Europe and Africa) to stop migration.

    Israeli arms firms are also notable winners of EU border contracts. In 2018, Frontex selected the Heron drone from Israel Aerospace Industries for pilot-testing surveillance flights in the Mediterranean. In 2015, Israeli firm Elbit sold six of its Hermes UAVs to the Switzerland’s Border Guard, in a controversial €230 million deal. It has since signed a UAV contract with the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA), as a subcontractor for the Portuguese company CEIIA (2018), as well as contracts to supply technology for three patrol vessels for the Hellenic Coast Guard (2019).
    Land wall contractors

    Most of the walls and fences that have been rapidly erected across Europe have been built by national construction companies, but one European company has dominated the field: European Security Fencing, a Spanish producer of razor wire, in particular a coiled wire known as concertinas. It is most known for the razor wire on the fences around Ceuta and Melilla. It also delivered the razor wire for the fence on the border between Hungary and Serbia, and its concertinas were installed on the borders between Bulgaria and Turkey and Austria and Slovenia, as well as at Calais, and for a few days on the border between Hungary and Slovenia before being removed. Given its long-term market monopoly, its concertinas are very likely used at other borders in Europe.

    Other contractors providing both walls and associated technology include DAT-CON (Croatia, Cyprus, Macedonia, Moldova, Slovenia and Ukraine), Geo Alpinbau (Austria/Slovenia), Indra, Dragados, Ferrovial, Proyectos Y Tecnología Sallén and Eulen (Spain/Morocco), Patstroy Bourgas, Infra Expert, Patengineeringstroy, Geostroy Engineering, Metallic-Ivan Mihaylov and Indra (Bulgaria/Turkey), Nordecon and Defendec (Estonia/Russia), DAK Acélszerkezeti Kft and SIA Ceļu būvniecības sabiedrība IGATE (Latvia/Russia), Gintrėja (Lithuania/Russia), Minis and Legi-SGS(Slovenia/Croatia), Groupe CW, Jackson’s Fencing, Sorhea, Vinci/Eurovia and Zaun Ltd (France/UK).

    In many cases, the actual costs of the walls and associated technologies exceed original estimates. There have also been many allegations and legal charges of corruption, in some cases because projects were given to corporate friends of government officials. In Slovenia, for example, accusations of corruption concerning the border wall contract have led to a continuing three-year legal battle for access to documents that has reached the Supreme Court. Despite this, the EU’s External Borders Fund has been a critical financial supporter of technological infrastructure and services in many of the member states’ border operations. In Macedonia, for example, the EU has provided €9 million for patrol vehicles, night-vision cameras, heartbeat detectors and technical support for border guards to help it manage its southern border.
    Maritime wall profiteers

    The data about which ships, helicopters and aircraft are used in Europe’s maritime operations is not transparent and therefore it is difficult to get a full picture. Our research shows, however, that the key corporations involved include the European arms giants Airbus and Leonardo, as well as large shipbuilding companies including Dutch Damen and Italian Fincantieri.

    Damen’s patrol vessels have been used for border operations by Albania, Belgium, Bulgaria, Portugal, the Netherlands, Romania, Sweden and the UK as well as in key Frontex operations (Poseidon, Triton and Themis), Operation Sophia and in supporting NATO’s role in Operation Poseidon. Outside Europe, Libya, Morocco, Tunisia and Turkey use Damen vessels for border security, often in cooperation with the EU or its member states. Turkey’s €20 million purchase of six Damen vessels for its coast guard in 2006, for example, was financed through the EU Instrument contributing to Stability and Peace (IcSP), intended for peace-building and conflict prevention.

    The sale of Damen vessels to Libya unveils the potential troubling human costs of this corporate trade. In 2012, Damen supplied four patrol vessels to the Libyan Coast Guard, sold as civil equipment in order to avoid a Dutch arms export license. Researchers have since found out, however, that the ships were not only sold with mounting points for weapons, but were then armed and used to stop refugee boats. Several incidents involving these ships have been reported, including one where some 20 or 30 refugees drowned. Damen has refused to comment, saying it had agreed with the Libyan government not to disclose information about the ships.

    In addition to Damen, many national shipbuilders play a significant role in maritime operations as they were invariably prioritised by the countries contributing to each Frontex or other Mediterranean operation. Hence, all the ships Italy contributed to Operation Sophia were built by Fincantieri, while all Spanish ships come from Navantia and its predecessors. Similarly, France purchases from DCN/DCNS, now Naval Group, and all German ships were built by several German shipyards (Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft, HDW, Lürssen Gruppe). Other companies in Frontex operations have included Greek company, Motomarine Shipyards, which produced the Panther 57 Fast Patrol Boats used by the Hellenic Coast Guard, Hellenic Shipyards and Israel Shipyards.

    Austrian company Schiebel is a significant player in maritime aerial surveillance through its supply of S-100 drones. In November 2018, EMSA selected the company for a €24 million maritime surveillance contract for a range of operations including border security. Since 2017, Schiebel has also won contracts from Croatia, Denmark, Iceland, Italy, Portugal and Spain. The company has a controversial record, with its drones sold to a number of countries experiencing armed conflict or governed by repressive regimes such as Libya, Myanmar, the UAE and Yemen.

    Finland and the Netherlands deployed Dornier aircraft to Operation Hermes and Operation Poseidon respectively, and to Operation Triton. Dornier is now part of the US subsidiary of the Israeli arms company Elbit Systems. CAE Aviation (Luxembourg), DEA Aviation (UK) and EASP Air (Netherlands) have all received contracts for aircraft surveillance work for Frontex. Airbus, French Dassault Aviation, Leonardo and US Lockheed Martin were the most important suppliers of aircraft used in Operation Sophia.

    The EU and its member states defend their maritime operations by publicising their role in rescuing refugees at sea, but this is not their primary goal, as Frontex director Fabrice Leggeri made clear in April 2015, saying that Frontex has no mandate for ‘proactive search-and-rescue action[s]’ and that saving lives should not be a priority. The thwarting and criminalisation of NGO rescue operations in the Mediterranean and the frequent reports of violence and illegal refoulement of refugees, also demonstrates why these maritime operations should be considered more like walls than humanitarian missions.
    Virtual walls

    The major EU contracts for the virtual walls have largely gone to two companies, sometimes as leaders of a consortium. Sopra Steria is the main contractor for the development and maintenance of the Visa Information System (VIS), Schengen Information System (SIS II) and European Dactyloscopy (Eurodac), while GMV has secured a string of contracts for Eurosur. The systems they build help control, monitor and surveil people’s movements across Europe and increasingly beyond.

    Sopra Steria is a French technology consultancy firm that has to date won EU contracts worth a total value of over €150 million. For some of these large contracts Sopra Steria joined consortiums with HP Belgium, Bull and 3M Belgium. Despite considerable business, Sopra Steria has faced considerable criticism for its poor record on delivering projects on time and on budget. Its launch of SIS II was constantly delayed, forcing the Commission to extend contracts and increase budgets. Similarly, Sopra Steria was involved in another consortium, the Trusted Borders consortium, contracted to deliver the UK e-Borders programme, which was eventually terminated in 2010 after constant delays and failure to deliver. Yet it continues to win contracts, in part because it has secured a near-monopoly of knowledge and access to EU officials. The central role that Sopra Steria plays in developing these EU biometric systems has also had a spin-off effect in securing other national contracts, including with Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Romania and Slovenia GMV, a Spanish technology company, has received a succession of large contracts for Eurosur, ever since its testing phase in 2010, worth at least €25 million. It also provides technology to the Spanish Guardia Civil, such as control centres for its Integrated System of External Vigilance (SIVE) border security system as well as software development services to Frontex. It has participated in at least ten EU-funded research projects on border security.

    Most of the large contracts for the virtual walls that did not go to consortia including Sopra Steria were awarded by eu-LISA (European Union Agency for the Operational Management of Large-Scale IT Systems in the Area of Freedom, Security and Justice) to consortia comprising computer and technology companies including Accenture, Atos Belgium and Morpho (later renamed Idema).
    Lobbying

    As research in our Border Wars series has consistently shown, through effective lobbying, the military and security industry has been very influential in shaping the discourse of EU security and military policies. The industry has succeeded in positioning itself as the experts on border security, pushing the underlying narrative that migration is first and foremost a security threat, to be combatted by security and military means. With this premise, it creates a continuous demand for the ever-expanding catalogue of equipment and services the industry supplies for border security and control.

    Many of the companies listed here, particularly the large arms companies, are involved in the European Organisation for Security (EOS), the most important lobby group on border security. Many of the IT security firms that build EU’s virtual walls are members of the European Biometrics Association (EAB). EOS has an ‘Integrated Border Security Working Group’ to ‘facilitate the development and uptake of better technology solutions for border security both at border checkpoints, and along maritime and land borders’. The working group is chaired by Giorgio Gulienetti of the Italian arms company Leonardo, with Isto Mattila (Laurea University of Applied Science) and Peter Smallridge of Gemalto, a digital security company recently acquired by Thales.

    Company lobbyists and representatives of these lobby organisations regularly meet with EU institutions, including the European Commission, are part of official advisory committees, publish influential proposals, organise meetings between industry, policy-makers and executives and also meet at the plethora of military and security fairs, conferences and seminars. Airbus, Leonardo and Thales together with EOS held 226 registered lobbying meetings with the European Commission between 2014 and 2019. In these meetings representatives of the industry position themselves as the experts on border security, presenting their goods and services as the solution for ‘security threats’ caused by immigration. In 2017, the same group of companies and EOS spent up to €2.65 million on lobbying.

    A similar close relationship can be seen on virtual walls, with the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission arguing openly for public policy to foster the ‘emergence of a vibrant European biometrics industry’.
    A deadly trade and a choice

    The conclusion of this survey of the business of building walls is clear. A Europe full of walls has proved to be very good for the bottom line of a wide range of corporations including arms, security, IT, shipping and construction companies. The EU’s planned budgets for border security for the next decade show it is also a business that will continue to boom.

    This is also a deadly business. The heavy militarisation of Europe’s borders on land and at sea has led refugees and migrants to follow far more hazardous routes and has trapped others in desperate conditions in neighbouring countries like Libya. Many deaths are not recorded, but those that are tracked in the Mediterranean show that the proportion of those who drown trying to reach Europe continues to increase each year.

    This is not an inevitable state of affairs. It is both the result of policy decisions made by the EU and its member states, and corporate decisions to profit from these policies. In a rare principled stand, German razor wire manufacturer Mutanox in 2015 stated it would not sell its product to the Hungarian government arguing: ‘Razor wire is designed to prevent criminal acts, like a burglary. Fleeing children and adults are not criminals’. It is time for other European politicians and business leaders to recognise the same truth: that building walls against the world’s most vulnerable people violates human rights and is an immoral act that history will judge harshly. Thirty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, it is time for Europe to bring down its new walls.

    https://www.tni.org/en/businessbuildingwalls

    #business #murs #barrières_frontalières #militarisation_des_frontières #visualisation #Europe #UE #EU #complexe_militaro-industriel #Airbus #Leonardo #Thales #Indra #Israel_Aerospace_Industries #Elbit #European_Security_Fencing #DAT-CON #Geo_Alpinbau #Dragados #Ferrovial, #Proyectos_Y_Tecnología_Sallén #Eulen #Patstroy_Bourgas #Infra_Expert #Patengineeringstroy #Geostroy_Engineering #Metallic-Ivan_Mihaylov #Nordecon #Defendec #DAK_Acélszerkezeti_Kft #SIA_Ceļu_būvniecības_sabiedrība_IGATE #Gintrėja #Minis #Legi-SGS #Groupe_CW #Jackson’s_Fencing #Sorhea #Vinci #Eurovia #Zaun_Ltd #Damen #Fincantieri #Frontex #Damen #Turquie #Instrument_contributing_to_Stability_and_Peace (#IcSP) #Libye #exernalisation #Operation_Sophia #Navantia #Naval_Group #Flensburger_Schiffbau-Gesellschaft #HDW #Lürssen_Gruppe #Motomarine_Shipyards #Panther_57 #Hellenic_Shipyards #Israel_Shipyards #Schiebel #Dornier #Operation_Hermes #CAE_Aviation #DEA_Aviation #EASP_Air #French_Dassault_Aviation #US_Lockheed_Martin #murs_virtuels #Sopra_Steria #Visa_Information_System (#VIS) #données #Schengen_Information_System (#SIS_II) #European_Dactyloscopy (#Eurodac) #GMV #Eurosur #HP_Belgium #Bull #3M_Belgium #Trusted_Borders_consortium #économie #biométrie #Integrated_System_of_External_Vigilance (#SIVE) #eu-LISA #Accenture #Atos_Belgium #Morpho #Idema #lobby #European_Organisation_for_Security (#EOS) #European_Biometrics_Association (#EAB) #Integrated_Border_Security_Working_Group #Giorgio_Gulienetti #Isto_Mattila #Peter_Smallridge #Gemalto #murs_terrestres #murs_maritimes #coût #chiffres #statistiques #Joint_Research_Centre_of_the_European_Commission #Mutanox

    Pour télécharger le #rapport :


    https://www.tni.org/files/publication-downloads/business_of_building_walls_-_full_report.pdf

    déjà signalé par @odilon ici :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/809783
    Je le remets ici avec des mots clé de plus

    ping @daphne @marty @isskein @karine4

    • La costruzione di muri: un business

      Trent’anni dopo la caduta del Muro di Berlino, l’Europa fa parlare di sé ancora una volta per i suoi muri di frontiera. Questa volta non è tanto l’ideologia che la divide, quanto la paura di rifugiati e migranti, alcune tra le persone più vulnerabili al mondo.

      Riassunto del rapporto «The Business of Building Walls» [1]:

      Chi ha ucciso il sogno di un’Europa più aperta? Cosa ha dato inizio a questa nuova era dei muri?
      Ci sono evidentemente molte ragioni: il crescente spostamento di persone a causa di conflitti, repressione e impoverimento, l’ascesa di politiche securitarie sulla scia dell’11 settembre, l’insicurezza economica e sociale percepita in Europa dopo la crisi finanziaria del 2008, solo per nominarne alcune. Tuttavia, c’è un gruppo che ha di gran lunga da guadagnare da questo innalzamento di nuovi muri: le imprese che li costruiscono. La loro influenza nel dare forma ad un mondo di muri necessita di un esame più profondo.

      Questo rapporto esplora il business della costruzione di muri, che è stato alimentato e ha beneficiato di un aumento considerevole della spesa pubblica dedicata alla sicurezza delle frontiere dall’Unione Europea (EU) e dai suoi Stati membri. Alcune imprese beneficiarie sono delle multinazionali che approfittano di un mercato globale per la sicurezza delle frontiere che si stima valere approssimativamente 17,5 miliardi di euro nel 2018, con una crescita annuale prevista almeno dell’8% nei prossimi anni.

      È importante guardare sia oltre che dietro i muri e le barriere d’Europa, perché i reali ostacoli alla migrazione contemporanea non sono tanto le recinzioni, quanto la vasta gamma di tecnologie che vi è alla base, dai sistemi radar ai droni, dalle telecamere di sorveglianza ai sistemi biometrici di rilevamento delle impronte digitali. Allo stesso modo, alcuni tra i più pericolosi muri d’Europa non sono nemmeno fisici o sulla terraferma. Le navi, gli aerei e i droni usati per pattugliare il Mediterraneo hanno creato un muro marittimo e un cimitero per i migliaia di migranti e di rifugiati che non hanno un passaggio legale verso la salvezza o per esercitare il loro diritto di asilo.

      Tutto ciò rende insignificanti le dichiarazioni della Commissione Europea secondo le quali essa non finanzierebbe i muri e le recinzioni. Il portavoce della Commissione, Alexander Winterstein, per esempio, nel rifiutare la richiesta dell’Ungheria di rimborsare la metà dei costi delle recinzioni costruite sul suo confine con la Croazia e la Serbia, ha affermato: “Noi sosteniamo le misure di gestione delle frontiere presso i confini esterni. Queste possono consistere in misure di sorveglianza o in equipaggiamento di controllo delle frontiere... . Ma le recinzioni, quelle non le finanziamo”. In altre parole, la Commissione è disposta a pagare per qualunque cosa che fortifichi un confine fintanto che ciò non sia visto come propriamente costruire dei muri.

      Questo rapporto è il seguito di “Building Walls - Fear and securitizazion in the Euopean Union”, co-pubblicato nel 2018 con Centre Delàs e Stop Wapenhandel, che per primi hanno misurato e identificato i muri che attraversano l’Europa.

      Questo nuovo rapporto si focalizza sulle imprese che hanno tratto profitto dai tre differenti tipi di muro in Europa:
      – Le imprese di costruzione ingaggiate per costruire i muri fisici costruiti dagli Stati membri UE e dall’Area Schengen in collaborazione con le imprese esperte in sicurezza e tecnologia che provvedono le tecnologie, l’equipaggiamento e i servizi associati;
      – le imprese di trasporto marittimo e di armamenti che forniscono le navi, gli aerei, gli elicotteri e i droni che costituiscono i muri marittimi dell’Europa per tentare di controllare i flussi migratori nel Mediterraneo, in particolare le operazioni di Frontex, l’operazione Sophia e l’operazione italiana Mare Nostrum;
      – e le imprese specializzate in informatica e in sicurezza incaricate di sviluppare, eseguire, estendere e mantenere i sistemi dell’UE che controllano i movimento delle persone, quali SIS II (Schengen Information System) e EES (Entry/Exii Scheme), che costituiscono i muri virtuali dell’Europa.
      Dei budget fiorenti

      Il flusso di denaro dai contribuenti ai costruttori di muri è stato estremamente lucrativo e non cessa di aumentare. Il report rivela che dalla fine della guerra fredda, le imprese hanno raccolto i profitti di almeno 900 milioni di euro di spese dei paesi dell’UE per i muri fisici e per le recinzioni. Con i dati parziali (sia nella portata e che negli anni), i costi reali raggiungerebbero almeno 1 miliardo di euro. Inoltre, le imprese che forniscono la tecnologia e i servizi che accompagnano i muri hanno ugualmente beneficiato di un flusso costante di finanziamenti da parte dell’UE, in particolare i Fondi per le frontiere esterne (1,7 miliardi di euro, 2007-2013) e i Fondi per la sicurezza interna - Fondi per le Frontiere (2,76 miliardi di euro, 2014-2020).

      Le spese dell’UE per i muri marittimi hanno raggiunto almeno 676,4 milioni di euro tra il 2006 e il 2017 (di cui 534 milioni sono stati spesi da Frontex, 28 milioni dall’UE nell’operazione Sophia e 114 milioni dall’Italia nell’operazione Mare Nostrum) e sarebbero molto superiori se si includessero tutte le operazioni delle guardie costiera nazionali nel Mediterraneo.

      Questa esplosione dei budget per le frontiere ha le condizioni per proseguire. Nel quadro del suo budget per il prossimo ciclo di bilancio dell’Unione Europea (2021-2027), la Commissione europea ha attribuito 8,02 miliardi di euro al suo fondo di gestione integrata delle frontiere (2021-2027), 11,27 miliardi a Frontex (dei quali 2,2 miliardi saranno utilizzati per l’acquisizione, il mantenimento e l’utilizzo di mezzi aerei, marittimi e terrestri) e almeno 1,9 miliardi di euro di spese totali (2000-2027) alle sue banche dati di identificazione e a Eurosur (il sistemo europeo di sorveglianza delle frontiere).
      I principali attori del settore degli armamenti

      Tre giganti europei del settore della difesa e della sicurezza giocano un ruolo cruciale nei differenti tipi di frontiere d’Europa: Thales, Leonardo e Airbus.

      – Thales è un’impresa francese specializzata negli armamenti e nella sicurezza, con una presenza significativa nei Paesi Bassi, che produce sistemi radar e sensori utilizzati da numerose navi della sicurezza frontaliera. I sistemi Thales, per esempio, sono stati utilizzati dalle navi olandesi e portoghesi impiegate nelle operazioni di Frontex.
      Thales produce ugualmente sistemi di sorveglianza marittima per droni e lavora attualmente per sviluppare una infrastruttura di sorveglianza delle frontiere per Eurosus, che permetta di seguire e controllare i rifugiati prima che raggiungano l’Europa con l’aiuto di applicazioni per Smartphone, e studia ugualmente l’utilizzo di “High Altitude Pseudo-Satellites - HAPS” per la sicurezza delle frontiere, per l’Agenzia spaziale europea e Frontex. Thales fornisce attualmente il sistema di sicurezza del porto altamente militarizzato di Calais.
      Con l’acquisto nel 2019 di Gemalto, multinazionale specializzata nella sicurezza e identità (biometrica), Thales diventa un attore importante nello sviluppo e nel mantenimento dei muri virtuali dell’UE. L’impresa ha partecipato a 27 progetti di ricerca dell’UE sulla sicurezza delle frontiere.

      – La società di armamenti italiana Leonardo (originariamente Finmeccanica o Leonardo-Finmeccanica) è uno dei principali fornitori di elicotteri per la sicurezza delle frontiere, utilizzati dalle operazioni Mare Nostrum, Hera e Sophia in Italia. Ha ugualmente fatto parte dei principali fornitori di UAV (o droni), ottenendo un contratto di 67,1 milioni di euro nel 2017 con l’EMSA (Agenzia europea per la sicurezza marittima) per fornire le agenzie di guardia costiera dell’UE.
      Leonardo faceva ugualmente parte di un consorzio che si è visto attribuire un contratto di 142,1 milioni di euro nel 2019 per attuare e assicurare il mantenimento dei muri virtuali dell’UE, ossia il Sistema di entrata/uscita (EES). La società detiene, con Thales, Telespazio, che partecipa ai progetti di osservazione dai satelliti dell’UE (React e Copernicus) utilizzati per controllare le frontiere. Leonardo ha partecipato a 24 progetti di ricerca dell’UE sulla sicurezza e il controllo delle frontiere, tra cui lo sviluppo di Eurosur.

      – Il gigante degli armamenti pan-europei Airbus è un importante fornitore di elicotteri utilizzati nella sorveglianza delle frontiere marittime e di alcune frontiere terrestri, impiegati da Belgio, Francia, Germania, Grecia, Italia, Lituania e Spagna, in particolare nelle operazioni marittime Sophia, Poseidon e Triton. Airbus e le sue filiali hanno partecipato almeno a 13 progetti di ricerca sulla sicurezza delle frontiere finanziati dall’UE, tra cui OCEAN2020, PERSEUS e LOBOS.

      Il ruolo chiave di queste società di armamenti in realtà non è sorprendente. Come è stato dimostrato da “Border Wars” (2016), queste imprese, in quanto appartenenti a lobby come EOS (Organizzazione europea per la sicurezza) e ASD (Associazione delle industrie aerospaziali e della difesa in Europa), hanno ampiamente contribuito a influenzare l’orientamento della politica delle frontiere dell’UE. Paradossalmente, questi stessi marchi fanno ugualmente parte dei quattro più grandi venditori europei di armi al Medio Oriente e all’Africa del Nord, contribuendo così ad alimentare i conflitti all’origine di queste migrazioni forzate.

      Allo stesso modo Indra gioca un ruolo non indifferente nel controllo delle frontiere in Spagna e nel Mediterraneo. L’impresa ha ottenuto una serie di contratti per fortificare Ceuta e Melilla (enclavi spagnole nel Nord del Marocco). Indra ha ugualmente sviluppato il sistema di controllo delle frontiere SIVE (con sistemi radar, di sensori e visivi) che è installato nella maggior parte delle frontiere della Spagna, così come in Portogallo e in Romania. Nel luglio 2018, Indra ha ottenuto un contratto di 10 milioni di euro per assicurare la gestione di SIVE su più siti per due anni. L’impresa è molto attiva nel fare lobby presso l’UE. È ugualmente una dei grandi beneficiari dei finanziamenti per la ricerca dell’UE, che assicurano il coordinamento del progetto PERSEUS per lo sviluppo di Eurosur e il Seahorse Network, la rete di scambio di informazioni tra le forze di polizia dei paesi mediterranei (in Europa e in Africa) per fermare le migrazioni.

      Le società di armamenti israeliane hanno anch’esse ottenuto numerosi contratti nel quadro della sicurezza delle frontiere in UE. Nel 2018, Frontex ha selezionato il drone Heron delle Israel Aerospace Industries per i voli di sorveglianza degli esperimenti pilota nel Mediterraneo. Nel 2015, la società israeliana Elbit Systems ha venduto sei dei suoi droni Hermes al Corpo di guardie di frontiera svizzero, nel quadro di un contratto controverso di 230 milioni di euro. Ha anche firmato in seguito un contratto per droni con l’EMSA (Agenzia europea per la sicurezza marittima), in quanto subappaltatore della società portoghese CEIIA (2018), così come dei contratti per equipaggiare tre navi di pattugliamento per la Hellenic Coast Guard (2019).
      Gli appaltatori dei muri fisici

      La maggioranza di muri e recinzioni che sono stati rapidamente eretti attraverso l’Europa, sono stati costruiti da società di BTP nazionali/società nazionali di costruzioni, ma un’impresa europea ha dominato nel mercato: la European Security Fencing, un produttore spagnolo di filo spinato, in particolare di un filo a spirale chiamato “concertina”. È famosa per aver fornito i fili spinati delle recinzioni che circondano Ceuta e Melilla. L’impresa ha ugualmente dotato di fili spinati le frontiere tra l’Ungheria e la Serbia, e i suoi fili spinati “concertina” sono stati installati alle frontiere tra Bulgaria e Turchia e tra l’Austria e la Slovenia, così come a Calais e, per qualche giorno, alla frontiera tra Ungheria e Slovenia, prima di essere ritirati. Dato che essi detengono il monopolio sul mercato da un po’ di tempo a questa parte, è probabile che i fili spinati “concertina” siano stati utilizzati presso altre frontiere in Europa.

      Tra le altre imprese che hanno fornito i muri e le tecnologie ad essi associate, si trova DAT-CON (Croazia, Cipro, Macedonia, Moldavia, Slovenia e Ucraina), Geo Alpinbau (Austria/Slovenia), Indra, Dragados, Ferrovial, Proyectos Y Tecnología Sallén e Eulen (Spagna/Marocco), Patstroy Bourgas, Infra Expert, Patengineeringstroy, Geostroy Engineering, Metallic-Ivan Mihaylov et Indra (Bulgaria/Turchia), Nordecon e Defendec (Estonia/Russia), DAK Acélszerkezeti Kft e SIA Ceļu būvniecības sabiedrība IGATE (Lettonia/Russia), Gintrėja (Lituania/Russi), Minis e Legi-SGS (Slovenia/Croazia), Groupe CW, Jackson’s Fencing, Sorhea, Vinci/Eurovia e Zaun Ltd (Francia/Regno Unito).

      I costi reali dei muri e delle tecnologie associate superano spesso le stime originali. Numerose accuse e denunce per corruzione sono state allo stesso modo formulate, in certi casi perché i progetti erano stati attribuiti a delle imprese che appartenevano ad amici di alti funzionari. In Slovenia, per esempio, accuse di corruzione riguardanti un contratto per la costruzione di muri alle frontiere hanno portato a tre anni di battaglie legali per avere accesso ai documenti; la questione è passata poi alla Corte suprema.

      Malgrado tutto ciò, il Fondo europeo per le frontiere esterne ha sostenuto finanziariamente le infrastrutture e i servizi tecnologici di numerose operazioni alle frontiere degli Stati membri. In Macedonia, per esempio, l’UE ha versato 9 milioni di euro per finanziare dei veicoli di pattugliamento, delle telecamere a visione notturna, dei rivelatori di battito cardiaco e sostegno tecnico alle guardie di frontiera nell’aiuto della gestione della sua frontiera meridionale.
      Gli speculatori dei muri marittimi

      I dati che permettono di determinare quali imbarcazioni, elicotteri e aerei sono utilizzati nelle operazioni marittime in Europa mancano di trasparenza. È dunque difficile recuperare tutte le informazioni. Le nostre ricerche mostrano comunque che tra le principali società implicate figurano i giganti europei degli armamenti Airbus e Leonardo, così come grandi imprese di costruzione navale come l’olandese Damen e l’italiana Fincantieri.

      Le imbarcazioni di pattugliamento di Damen sono servite per delle operazioni frontaliere portate avanti da Albania, Belgio, Bulgaria, Portogallo, Paesi Bassi, Romania, Svezia e Regno Unito, così come per le vaste operazioni di Frontex (Poseidon, Triton e Themis), per l’operazione Sophia e hanno ugualmente sostento la NATO nell’operazione Poseidon.

      Al di fuori dell’Europa, la Libia, il Marocco, la Tunisia e la Turchia utilizzano delle imbarcazioni Damen per la sicurezza delle frontiere, spesso in collaborazione con l’UE o i suoi Stati membri. Per esempio, le sei navi Damen che la Turchia ha comprato per la sua guardia costiera nel 2006, per un totale di 20 milioni di euro, sono state finanziate attraverso lo strumento europeo che contribuirebbe alla stabilità e alla pace (IcSP), destinato a mantenere la pace e a prevenire i conflitti.

      La vendita di imbarcazioni Damen alla Libia mette in evidenza l’inquietante costo umano di questo commercio. Nel 2012, Damen ha fornito quattro imbarcazioni di pattugliamento alla guardia costiera libica, che sono state vendute come equipaggiamento civile col fine di evitare la licenza di esportazione di armi nei Paesi Bassi. I ricercatori hanno poi scoperto che non solo le imbarcazioni erano state vendute con dei punti di fissaggio per le armi, ma che erano state in seguito armate ed utilizzate per fermare le imbarcazioni di rifugiati. Numerosi incidenti che hanno implicato queste imbarcazioni sono stati segnalati, tra i quali l’annegamento di 20 o 30 rifugiati. Damen si è rifiutata di commentare, dichiarando di aver convenuto col governo libico di non divulgare alcuna informazione riguardante le imbarcazioni.

      Numerosi costruttori navali nazionali, oltre a Damen, giocano un ruolo determinante nelle operizioni marittime poiché sono sistematicamente scelti con priorità dai paesi partecipanti a ogni operazione di Frontex o ad altre operazioni nel Mediterraneo. Tutte le imbarcazioni fornite dall’Italia all’operazione Sophia sono state costruite da Fincantieri e tutte quelle spagnole sono fornite da Navantia e dai suoi predecessori. Allo stesso modo, la Francia si rifornisce da DCN/DCNS, ormai Naval Group, e tutte le imbarcazioni tedesche sono state costruite da diversi cantieri navali tedeschi (Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft, HDW, Lürssen Gruppe). Altre imprese hanno partecipato alle operazioni di Frontex, tra cui la società greca Motomarine Shipyards, che ha prodotto i pattugliatori rapidi Panther 57 utilizzati dalla guardia costiera greca, così come la Hellenic Shipyards e la Israel Shipyards.

      La società austriaca Schiebel, che fornisce i droni S-100, gioca un ruolo importante nella sorveglianza aerea delle attività marittime. Nel novembre 2018, è stata selezionata dall’EMSA per un contratto di sorveglianza marittima di 24 milioni di euro riguardante differenti operazioni che includevano la sicurezza delle frontiere. Dal 2017, Schiebel ha ugualmente ottenuto dei contratti con la Croazia, la Danimarca, l’Islanda, l’Italia, il Portogallo e la Spagna. L’impresa ha un passato controverso: ha venduto dei droni a numerosi paesi in conflitto armato o governati da regimi repressivi come la Libia, il Myanmar, gli Emirati Arabi Uniti e lo Yemen.

      La Finlandia e i Paesi Bassi hanno impiegato degli aerei Dornier rispettivamente nel quadro delle operazioni Hermès, Poseidon e Triton. Dornier appartiene ormai alla filiale americana della società di armamenti israeliana Elbit Systems.
      CAE Aviation (Lussemburgo), DEA Aviation (Regno Unito) e EASP Air (Paesi Bassi) hanno tutte ottenuto dei contratti di sorveglianza aerea per Frontex.
      Airbus, Dassault Aviation, Leonardo e l’americana Lockheed Martin hanno fornito il più grande numero di aerei utilizzati per l’operazione Sophia.

      L’UE e i suoi Stati membri difendono le loro operazioni marittime pubblicizzando il loro ruolo nel salvataggio dei rifugiati in mare. Ma non è questo il loro obiettivo principale, come sottolinea il direttore di Frontex Fabrice Leggeri nell’aprile 2015, dichiarando che “le azioni volontarie di ricerca e salvataggio” non fanno parte del mandato affidato a Frontex, e che salvare delle vite non dovrebbe essere una priorità. La criminalizzazione delle operazioni di salvataggio da parte delle ONG, gli ostacoli che esse incontrano, così come la violenza e i respingimenti illegali dei rifugiati, spesso denunciati, illustrano bene il fatto che queste operazioni marittime sono volte soprattutto a costituire muri piuttosto che missioni umanitarie.
      I muri virtuali

      I principali contratti dell’UE legati ai muri virtuali sono stati affidati a due imprese, a volte in quanto leader di un consorzio.
      Sopra Steria è il partner principale per lo sviluppo e il mantenimento del Sistema d’informazione dei visti (SIV), del Sistema di informazione Schengen (SIS II) e di Eurodac (European Dactyloscopy) e GMV ha firmato una serie di contratti per Eurosur. I sistemi che essi concepiscono permettono di controllare e di sorvegliare i movimenti delle persone attraverso l’Europa e, sempre più spesso, al di là delle sue frontiere.

      Sopra Steria è un’impresa francese di servizi per consultazioni in tecnologia che ha, ad oggi, ottenuto dei contratti con l’UE per un valore totale di più di 150 milioni di euro. Nel quadro di alcuni di questi grossi contratti, Sopra Steria ha formato dei consorzi con HP Belgio, Bull e 3M Belgio.

      Malgrado l’ampiezza di questi mercati, Sopra Steria ha ricevuto importanti critiche per la sua mancanza di rigore nel rispetto delle tempistiche e dei budget. Il lancio di SIS II è stato costantemente ritardato, costringendo la Commissione a prolungare i contratti e ad aumentare i budget. Sopra Steria aveva ugualmente fatto parte di un altro consorzio, Trusted Borders, impegnato nello sviluppo del programma e-Borders nel Regno Unito. Quest’ultimo è terminato nel 2010 dopo un accumulo di ritardi e di mancate consegne. Tuttavia, la società ha continuato a ottenere contratti, a causa del suo quasi monopolio di conoscenze e di relazioni con i rappresentanti dell’UE. Il ruolo centrale di Sopra Steria nello sviluppo dei sistemi biometrici dell’UE ha ugualmente portato alla firma di altri contratti nazionali con, tra gli altri, il Belgio, la Bulgaria, la Repubblica ceca, la Finlandia, la Francia, la Germania, la Romania e la Slovenia.

      GMV, un’impresa tecnologica spagnola, ha concluso una serie di grossi contratti per Eurosur, dopo la sua fase sperimentale nel 2010, per almeno 25 milioni di euro. Essa rifornisce ugualmente di tecnologie la Guardia Civil spagnola, tecnologie quali, ad esempio, i centri di controllo del suo Sistema integrato di sorveglianza esterna (SIVE), sistema di sicurezza delle frontiere, così come rifornisce di servizi di sviluppo logistico Frontex. L’impresa ha partecipato ad almeno dieci progetti di ricerca finanziati dall’UE sulla sicurezza delle frontiere.

      La maggior parte dei grossi contratti riguardanti i muri virtuali che non sono stati conclusi con consorzi di cui facesse parte Sopra Steria, sono stati attribuiti da eu-LISA (l’Agenzia europea per la gestione operazionale dei sistemi di informazione su vasta scale in seno allo spazio di libertà, di sicurezza e di giustizia) a dei consorzi di imprese specializzate nell’informazione e nelle nuove tecnologie, tra questi: Accenture, Atos Belgium e Morpho (rinominato Idemia).
      Lobby

      Come testimonia il nostro report “Border Wars”, il settore della difesa e della sicurezza, grazie ad una lobbying efficace, ha un’influenza considerabile nell’elaborazione delle politiche di difesa e di sicurezza dell’UE. Le imprese di questo settore industriale sono riuscite a posizionarsi come esperti della sicurezza delle frontiere, portando avanti il loro discorso secondo il quale la migrazione è prima di tutto una minaccia per la sicurezza che deve essere combattuta tramite mezzi militari e securitari. Questo crea così una domanda continua del catalogo sempre più fornito di equipaggiamenti e servizi che esse forniscono per la sicurezza e il controllo delle frontiere.

      Un numero alto di imprese che abbiamo nominato, in particolare le grandi società di armamenti, fanno parte dell’EOS (Organizzazione europea per la sicurezza), il più importante gruppo di pressione sulla sicurezza delle frontiere.

      Molte imprese informatiche che hanno concepito i muri virtuali dell’UE sono membri dell’EAB (Associazione Europea per la Biometria). L’EOS ha un “Gruppo di lavoro sulla sicurezza integrata delle frontiere” per “permettere lo sviluppo e l’adozione delle migliori soluzioni tecnologiche per la sicurezza delle frontiere sia ai checkpoint che lungo le frontiere marittime e terrestri”.
      Il gruppo di lavoro è presieduto da Giorgio Gulienetti, della società di armi italiana Leonardo, Isto Mattila (diplomato all’università di scienze applicate) e Peter Smallridge di Gemalto, multinazionale specializzata nella sicurezza numerica, recentemente acquisita da Thales.

      I lobbisti di imprese e i rappresentanti di questi gruppi di pressione incontrano regolarmente le istituzioni dell’UE, tra cui la Commissione europea, nel quadro di comitati di consiglio ufficiali, pubblicano proposte influenti, organizzano incontri tra il settore industriale, i policy-makers e i dirigenti e si ritrovano allo stesso modo in tutti i saloni, le conferenze e i seminari sulla difesa e la sicurezza.

      Airbus, Leonardo e Thales e l’EOS hanno anche assistito a 226 riunioni ufficiali di lobby con la Commissione europea tra il 2014 e il 2019. In queste riunioni, i rappresentanti del settore si presentano come esperti della sicurezza delle frontiere, e propongono i loro prodotti e servizi come soluzione alle “minacce alla sicurezza” costituite dall’immigrazione. Nel 2017, queste stesse imprese e l’EOS hanno speso fino a 2,56 milioni di euro in lobbying.

      Si constata una relazione simile per quanto riguarda i muri virtuali: il Centro comune della ricerca della Commissione europea domanda apertamente che le politiche pubbliche favoriscano “l’emergenza di una industria biometrica europea dinamica”.
      Un business mortale, una scelta

      La conclusione di questa inchiesta sul business dell’innalzamento di muri è chiara: la presenza di un’Europa piena di muri si rivela molto fruttuosa per una larga fetta di imprese del settore degli armamenti, della difesa, dell’informatica, del trasporto marittimo e delle imprese di costruzioni. I budget che l’UE ha pianificato per la sicurezza delle frontiere nei prossimi dieci anni mostrano che si tratta di un commercio che continua a prosperare.

      Si tratta altresì di un commercio mortale. A causa della vasta militarizzazione delle frontiere dell’Europa sulla terraferma e in mare, i rifugiati e i migranti intraprendono dei percorsi molto più pericolosi e alcuni si trovano anche intrappolati in terribili condizioni in paesi limitrofi come la Libia. Non vengono registrate tutte le morti, ma quelle che sono registrate nel Mediterraneo mostrano che il numero di migranti che annegano provando a raggiungere l’Europa continua ad aumentare ogni anno.

      Questo stato di cose non è inevitabile. È il risultato sia di decisioni politiche prese dall’UE e dai suoi Stati membri, sia dalle decisioni delle imprese di trarre profitto da queste politiche. Sono rare le imprese che prendono posizione, come il produttore tedesco di filo spinato Mutinox che ha dichiarato nel 2015 che non avrebbe venduto i suoi prodotti al governo ungherese per il seguente motivo: “I fili spinati sono concepiti per impedire atti criminali, come il furto. Dei rifugiati, bambini e adulti, non sono dei criminali”.

      È tempo che altri politici e capi d’impresa riconoscano questa stessa verità: erigere muri contro le popolazioni più vulnerabili viola i diritti umani e costituisce un atto immorale che sarà evidentemente condannato dalla storia.

      Trent’anni dopo la caduta del muro di Berlino, è tempo che l’Europa abbatta i suoi nuovi muri.

      https://www.meltingpot.org/La-costruzione-di-muri-un-business.html

    • How the arms industry drives Fortress Europe’s expansion

      In recent years, rising calls for deterrence have intensified the physical violence migrants face at the EU border. The externalization of the border through deals with sending and transit countries signals the expansion of this securitization process. Financial gains by international arms firms in this militarization trend form an obstacle for policy change.

      In March, April, and May of this year, multiple European countries deployed military forces to their national borders. This was done to assist with controls and patrols in the wake of border closures and other movement restrictions due to the Covid-19 crisis. Poland deployed 1,460 soldiers to the border to support the Border Guard and police as part of a larger military operation in reaction to Covid-19. And the Portuguese police used military drones as a complement to their land border checks. According to overviews from NATO, the Czech Republic, Greece, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands (military police), Slovakia, and Slovenia all stationed armed forces at their national borders.

      While some of these deployments have been or will be rolled back as the Corona crisis dies down, they are not exceptional developments. Rather, using armed forces for border security and control has been a common occurrence at EU external borders since the so-called refugee crisis of 2015. They are part of the continuing militarisation of European border and migration policies, which is known to put refugees at risk but is increasingly being expanded to third party countries. Successful lobbying from the military and security industry has been an important driver for these policies, from which large European arms companies have benefited.

      The militarization of borders happens when EU member states send armies to border regions, as they did in Operation Sophia off the Libyan coast. This was the first outright EU military mission to stop migration. But border militarization also includes the use of military equipment for migration control, such as helicopters and patrol vessels, as well as the the EU-wide surveillance system Eurosur, which connects surveillance data from all individual member states. Furthermore, EU countries now have over 1,000 kilometers of walls and fences on their borders. These are rigged with surveillance, monitoring, and detection technologies, and accompanied by an increasing use of drones and other autonomous systems. The EU also funds a constant stream of Research & Technology (R&T) projects to develop new technologies and services to monitor and manage migration.

      This process has been going on for decades. The Schengen Agreement of 1985, and the subsequent creation of the Schengen Area, which coupled the opening of the internal EU borders with robust control at the external borders, can be seen as a starting point for these developments. After 2011, when the so-called ‘Arab Spring’ led to fears of mass migration to Europe, and especially since the ‘refugee crisis’ of 2015, the EU accelerated the boosting and militarising of border security, enormously. Since then, stopping migration has been at the top of the EU agenda.

      An increasingly important part of the process of border militarization isn’t happening at the European borders, but far beyond them. The EU and its member states are incentivizing third party countries to help stop migrants long before they reach Europe. This externalising of borders has taken many forms, from expanding the goals of EUCAP missions in Mali and Niger to include the prevention of irregular migration, to funding and training the Libyan Coast Guard to return refugees back to torture and starvation in the infamous detention centers in Libya. It also includes the donation of border security equipment, for example from Germany to Tunisia, and funding for purchases, such as Turkey’s acquisition of coast guard vessels to strengthen its operational capacities.

      Next to the direct consequences of European border externalisation efforts, these policies cause and worsen problems in the third party countries concerned: diverting development funds and priorities, ruining migration-based economies, and strengthening authoritarian regimes such as those in Chad, Belarus, Eritrea, and Sudan by providing funding, training and equipment to their military and security forces. Precisely these state organs are most responsible for repression and abuses of human rights. All this feeds drivers of migration, including violence, repression, and unemployment. As such, it is almost a guarantee for more refugees in the future.

      EU border security agency Frontex has also extended its operations into non-EU-countries. Ongoing negotiations and conclusions of agreements with Balkan countries resulted in the first operation in Albania having started in May 2019. And this is only a small part of Frontex’ expanding role in recent years. In response to the ‘refugee crisis’ of 2015, the European Commission launched a series of proposals that saw large increases in the powers of the agency, including giving member states binding advice to boost their border security, and giving Frontex the right to intervene in member states’ affairs (even without their consent) by decision of the Commission or Council.

      These proposals also included the creation of a 10,000 person strong standing corps of border guards and a budget to buy or lease its own equipment. Concretely, Frontex started with a budget of €6 million in 2005, which grew to €143 million in 2015. This was then quickly increased again from €239 million in 2016 to €460 million in 2020. The enormous expansion of EU border security and control has been accompanied by rapidly increasing budgets in general. In recent years, billions of euros have been spent on fortifying borders, setting up biometric databases, increasing surveillance capacities, and paying non-EU-countries to play their parts in this expansion process.

      Negotiations about the next seven-year-budget for the EU, the Multiannual Financial Framework 2021-2027, are still ongoing. In the European Commission’s latest proposal, which is clearly positioned as a response to the Covid-19 pandemic, the fund for strengthening member states’ border security, the Integrated Border Management Fund, has been allotted €12.5 billion. Its predecessors, the External Borders Fund (2007-2013) and the Internal Security Fund – Borders (2014-2020), had much smaller budgets: €1.76 billion and €2.70 billion, respectively. For Frontex, €7.5 billion is reserved, with €2.2 billion earmarked for purchasing or leasing equipment such as helicopters, drones, and patrol vessels. These huge budget increases are exemplary of the priority the EU attaches to stopping migration.

      The narrative underlying these policies and budget growths is the perception of migration as a threat; a security problem. As researcher, Ainhoa Ruiz (Centre Delàs) writes, “the securitisation process also includes militarisation,” because “the prevailing paradigm for providing security is based on military principles: the use of force and coercion, more weapons equating to more security, and the achievement of security by eliminating threats.”

      This narrative hasn’t come out of the blue. It is pushed by right wing politicians and often followed by centrist and leftist parties afraid of losing voters. Importantly, it is also promoted by an extensive and successful industrial lobby. According to Martin Lemberg-Pedersen (Assistant Professor in Global Refugee Studies, Aalborg University), arms companies “establish themselves as experts on border security, and use this position to frame immigration to Europe as leading to evermore security threats in need of evermore advanced [security] products.” The narrative of migration as a security problem thus sets the stage for militaries, and the security companies behind the commercial arms lobby, to offer their goods and services as the solution. The range of militarization policies mentioned so far reflects the broad adoption of this narrative.

      The lobby organizations of large European military and security companies regularly interact with the European Commission and EU border agencies. They have meetings, organise roundtables, and see each other at military and security fairs and conferences. Industry representatives also take part in official advisory groups, are invited to present new arms and technologies, and write policy proposals. These proposals can sometimes be so influential that they are adopted as policy, almost unamended.

      This happened, for instance, when the the Commission decided to open up the Instrument contributing to Security and Peace, a fund meant for peace-building and conflict prevention. The fund’s terms were expanded to cover provision of third party countries with non-lethal security equipment, for example, for border security purposes. The new policy document for this turned out to be a step-by-step reproduction of an earlier proposal from lobby organisation, Aerospace and Defence Industries Association of Europe (ASD). Yet, perhaps the most far-reaching success of this kind is the expansion of Frontex, itself, into a European Border Guard. Years before it actually happened, the industry had already been pushing for this outcome.

      The same companies that are at the forefront of the border security and control lobby are, not surprisingly, also the big winners of EU and member states’ contracts in these areas. These include three of the largest European (and global) arms companies, namely, Airbus (Paneuropean), Leonardo (Italy) and Thales (France). These companies are active in many aspects of the border security and control market. Airbus’ and Leonardo’s main product in this field are helicopters, with EU funds paying for many purchases by EU and third countries. Thales provides radar, for example, for border patrol vessels, and is heavily involved in biometric and digital identification, especially after having acquired market leader, Gemalto, last year.

      These three companies are the main beneficiaries of the European anti-migration obsession. At the same time, these very three companies also contribute to new migration streams to Europe’s shores through their trade in arms. They are responsible for significant parts of Europe’s arms exports to countries at war, and they provide the arms used by parties in internal armed conflicts, by human rights violators, and by repressive regimes. These are the forces fueling the reasons for which people are forced to flee in the first place.

      Many other military and security companies also earn up to hundreds of millions of euros from large border security and control projects oriented around logistics and transport. Dutch shipbuilder Damen provided not only many southern European countries with border patrol vessels, but also controversially sold those to Libya and Turkey, among others. Its ships have also been used in Frontex operations, in Operation Sophia, and on the Channel between Calais and Dover.

      The Spanish company, European Security Fencing, provided razor wire for the fences around the Spanish enclaves, Ceuta and Melilla, in Morocco, as well as the fence at Calais and the fences on the borders of Austria, Bulgaria, and Hungary. Frontex, the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA), and Greece leased border surveillance drones from Elbit and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI). These are Israeli military companies that routinely promote their products as ‘combat-proven’ or ‘battlefield tested’ against Palestinians.

      Civipol, a French public-private company owned by the state, and several large arms producers (including Thales, Airbus, and Safran), run a string of EU-/member state-funded border security projects in third party countries. This includes setting up fingerprint databases of the whole populations of Mali and Senegal, which facilitates identification and deportation of their nationals from Europe. These are just a few examples of the companies that benefit from the billions of euros that the EU and its member states spend on a broad range of purchases and projects in their bid to stop migration.

      The numbers of forcibly displaced people in the world grew to a staggering 79.5 million by the end of last year. Instead of helping to eliminate the root causes of migration, EU border and migration policies, as well as its arms exports to the rest of the world, are bound to lead to more refugees in the future. The consequences of these policies have already been devastating. As experts in the field of migration have repeatedly warned, the militarisation of borders primarily pushes migrants to take alternative migration routes that are often more dangerous and involve the risks of relying on criminal smuggling networks. The Mediterranean Sea has become a sad witness of this, turning into a graveyard for a growing percentage of refugees trying to cross it.

      The EU approach to border security doesn’t stand on its own. Many other countries, in particular Western ones and those with authoritarian leaders, follow the same narrative and policies. Governments all over the world, but particularly those in the US, Australia, and Europe, continue to spend billions of euros on border security and control equipment and services. And they plan to increase budgets even more in the coming years. For military and security companies, this is good news; the global border security market is expected to grow by over 7% annually for the next five years to a total of $65 billion in 2025. It looks like they will belong to the very few winners of increasingly restrictive policies targeting vulnerable people on the run.

      https://crisismag.net/2020/06/27/how-the-arms-industry-drives-fortress-europes-expansion
      #industrie_militaire #covid-19 #coronavirus #frontières_extérieures #Operation_Sophia #Eurosur #surveillance #drones #technologie #EUCAP #externalisation #Albanie #budget #Integrated_Border_Management_Fund #menace #lobby_industriel #Instrument_contributing_to_Security_and_Peace #conflits #paix #prévention_de_conflits #Aerospace_and_Defence_Industries_Association_of_Europe (#ASD) #Airbus #Leonardo #Thales #hélicoptères #radar #biométrie #identification_digitale #Gemalto #commerce_d'armes #armement #Damen #European_Security_Fencing #barbelé #European_Maritime_Safety_Agency (#EMSA) #Elbit #Israel_Aerospace_Industries (#IAI) #Civipol #Safran #base_de_données

      –—

      Pour @etraces :

      Civipol, a French public-private company owned by the state, and several large arms producers (including Thales, Airbus, and Safran), run a string of EU-/member state-funded border security projects in third party countries. This includes setting up fingerprint databases of the whole populations of Mali and Senegal, which facilitates identification and deportation of their nationals from Europe

    • GUARDING THE FORTRESS. The role of Frontex in the militarisation and securitisation of migration flows in the European Union

      The report focuses on 19 Frontex operations run by the European Border and Coast Guard Agency (hereafter Frontex) to explore how the agency is militarising borders and criminalising migrants, undermining fundamental rights to freedom of movement and the right to asylum.

      This report is set in a wider context in which more than 70.8 million people worldwide have been forcibly displaced, according to the 2018 figures from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) (UNHCR, 2019). Some of these have reached the borders of the European Union (EU), seeking protection and asylum, but instead have encountered policy responses that mostly aim to halt and intercept migration flows, against the background of securitisation policies in which the governments of EU Member States see migration as a threat. One of the responses to address migration flows is the European Border and Coast Guard Agency (hereafter Frontex), established in 2004 as the EU body in charge of guarding what many have called ‘Fortress Europe’, and whose practices have helped to consolidate the criminalisation of migrants and the securitisation of their movements.

      The report focuses on analysing the tools deployed by Fortress Europe, in this case through Frontex, to prevent the freedom of movement and the right to asylum, from its creation in 2004 to the present day.

      The sources used to write this report were from the EU and Frontex, based on its budgets and annual reports. The analysis focused on the Frontex regulations, the language used and its meaning, as well as the budgetary trends, identifying the most significant items – namely, the joint operations and migrant-return operations.

      A table was compiled of all the joint operations mentioned in the annual reports since the Agency was established in 2005 up to 2018 (see annexes). The joint operations were found on government websites but were not mentioned in the Frontex annual reports. Of these operations, we analysed those of the longest duration, or that have showed recent signs of becoming long-term operations. The joint operations are analysed in terms of their objectives, area of action, the mandates of the personnel deployed, and their most noteworthy characteristics.

      Basically, the research sought to answer the following questions: What policies are being implemented in border areas and in what context? How does Frontex act in response to migration movements? A second objective was to analyse how Frontex securitises the movement of refugees and other migrants, with the aim of contributing to the analysis of the process of border militarisation and the security policies applied to non-EU migrants by the EU and its Member States.

      https://www.tni.org/en/guarding-the-fortress

      Pour télécharger le rapport_
      https://www.tni.org/files/publication-downloads/informe40_eng_ok.pdf

      #rapport #TNI #Transnational_institute

    • #Frontex aircraft : Below the radar against international law

      For three years, Frontex has been chartering small aircraft for the surveillance of the EU’s external borders. First Italy was thus supported, then Croatia followed. Frontex keeps the planes details secret, and the companies also switch off the transponders for position display during operations.

      The European Commission does not want to make public which private surveillance planes Frontex uses in the Mediterranean. In the non-public answer to a parliamentary question, the EU border agency writes that the information on the aircraft is „commercially confidential“ as it contains „personal data and sensitive operational information“.

      Frontex offers EU member states the option of monitoring their external borders using aircraft. For this „Frontex Aerial Surveillance Service“ (FASS), Frontex charters twin-engined airplanes from European companies. Italy first made use of the service in 2017, followed a year later by Croatia. In 2018, Frontex carried out at least 1,800 flight hours under the FASS, no figures are yet available for 2019.

      Air service to be supplemented with #drones

      The FASS flights are carried out under the umbrella of „Multipurpose Aerial Surveillance“, which includes satellite surveillance as well as drones. Before the end of this year, the border agency plans to station large drones in the Mediterranean for up to four years. The situation pictures of the European Union’s „pre-frontier area“ are fed into the surveillance system EUROSUR, whose headquarter is located at Frontex in Warsaw. The national EUROSUR contact points, for example in Spain, Portugal and Italy, also receive this information.

      In addition to private charter planes, Frontex also uses aircraft and helicopters provided by EU Member States, in the central Mediterranean via the „Themis“ mission. The EU Commission also keeps the call signs of the state aircraft operating there secret. They would be considered „sensitive operational information“ and could not be disclosed to MEPs.

      Previously, the FOIA platform „Frag den Staat“ („Ask the State“) had also tried to find out details about the sea and air capacities of the member states in „Themis“. Frontex refused to provide any information on this matter. „Frag den Staat“ lost a case against Frontex before the European Court of Justice and is now to pay 23,700 Euros to the agency for legal fees.

      Real-time tracking with FlightAware

      The confidentiality of Frontex comes as a surprise, because companies that monitor the Mediterranean for the agency are known through a tender. Frontex has signed framework contracts with the Spanish arms group Indra as well as the charter companies CAE Aviation (Canada), Diamond-Executive Aviation (Great Britain) and EASP Air (Netherlands). Frontex is spending up to 14.5 million euros each on the contracts.

      Finally, online service providers such as FlightAware can also be used to draw conclusions about which private and state airplanes are flying for Frontex in the Mediterranean. For real-time positioning, the providers use data from ADS-B transponders, which all larger aircraft must have installed. A worldwide community of non-commercial trackers receives this geodata and feeds it into the Internet. In this way, for example, Italian journalist Sergio Scandura documents practically all movements of Frontex aerial assets in the central Mediterranean.

      Among the aircraft tracked this way are the twin-engined „DA-42“, „DA-62“ and „Beech 350“ of Diamond-Executive Aviation, which patrol the Mediterranean Sea on behalf of Frontex as „Osprey1“, „Osprey3“ and „Tasty“, in former times also „Osprey2“ and „Eagle1“. They are all operated by Diamond-Executive Aviation and take off and land at airports in Malta and Sicily.

      „Push-backs“ become „pull-backs“

      In accordance with the Geneva Convention on Refugees, the EU Border Agency may not return people to states where they are at risk of torture or other serious human rights violations. Libya is not a safe haven; this assessment has been reiterated on several occasions by the United Nations Commissioner for Refugees, among others.

      Because these „push-backs“ are prohibited, Frontex has since 2017 been helping with so-called „pull-backs“ by bringing refugees back to Libya by the Libyan coast guard rather than by EU units. With the „Multipurpose Aerial Surveillance“, Frontex is de facto conducting air reconnaissance for Libya. By November 2019, the EU border agency had notified Libyan authorities about refugee boats on the high seas in at least 42 cases.

      Many international law experts consider this practice illegal. Since Libya would not be able to track down the refugees without the help of Frontex, the agency must take responsibility for the refoulements. The lawyers Omer Shatz and Juan Branco therefore want to sue responsibles of the European Union before the International Criminal Court in The Hague.

      Frontex watches refugees drown

      This is probably the reason why Frontex disguises the exact location of its air surveillance. Private maritime rescue organisations have repeatedly pointed out that Frontex aircrafts occasionally switch off their transponders so that they cannot be tracked via ADS-B. In the answer now available, this is confirmed by the EU Commission. According to this, the visibility of the aircraft would disclose „sensitive operational information“ and, in combination with other kinds of information, „undermine“ the operational objectives.

      The German Ministry of the Interior had already made similar comments on the Federal Police’s assets in Frontex missions, according to which „general tracking“ of their routes in real time would „endanger the success of the mission“.

      However, Frontex claims it did not issue instructions to online service providers to block the real-time position display of its planes, as journalist Scandura described. Nonetheless, the existing concealment of the operations only allows the conclusion that Frontex does not want to be controlled when the deployed aircraft watch refugees drown and Italy and Malta, as neighbouring EU member states, do not provide any assistance.

      https://digit.site36.net/2020/06/11/frontex-aircraft-blind-flight-against-international-law
      #avions #Italie #Croatie #confidentialité #transparence #Frontex_Aerial_Surveillance_Service (#FASS) #Multipurpose_Aerial_Surveillance #satellites #Méditerranée #Thermis #information_sensible #Indra #CAE_Aviation #Diamond-Executive_Aviation #EASP_Air #FlightAware #ADS-B #DA-42 #DA-62 #Beech_350 #Osprey1 #Osprey3 #Tasty #Osprey2 #Eagle1 #Malte #Sicile #pull-back #push-back #refoulement #Sergio_Scandura

    • Walls Must Fall: Ending the deadly politics of border militarisation - webinar recording
      This webinar explored the trajectory and globalization of border militarization and anti-migrant racism across the world, the history, ideologies and actors that have shaped it, the pillars and policies that underpin the border industrial complex, the resistance of migrants, refugees and activists, and the shifting dynamics within this pandemic.

      - #Harsha_Walia, author of Undoing Border Imperialism (2013)
      - #Jille_Belisario, Transnational Migrant Platform-Europe (TMP-E)
      - #Todd_Miller, author of Empire of Borders (2020), Storming the Wall (2019) and TNI’s report More than A Wall (2019)
      - #Kavita_Krishnan, All India Progressive Women’s Association (AIPWA).
      https://www.tni.org/en/article/walls-must-fall
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T8B-cJ2bTi8&feature=emb_logo

      #conférence #webinar

    • Le business meurtrier des frontières

      Le 21ème siècle sera-t-il celui des barrières ? Probable, au rythme où les frontières nationales se renforcent. Dans un livre riche et documenté, publié aux éditions Syllepse, le géographe Stéphane Rosière dresse un indispensable état des lieux.

      Une nuit du mois de juin, dans un centre de rétention de l’île de Rhodes, la police grecque vient chercher une vingtaine de migrant·e·s, dont deux bébés. Après un trajet en bus, elle abandonne le groupe dans un canot de sauvetage sans moteur, au milieu des eaux territoriales turques. En août, le New York Times publie une enquête révélant que cette pratique, avec la combinaison de l’arrivée aux affaires du premier ministre conservateur Kyriakos Mitsotakis et de la diffusion de la pandémie de Covid-19, est devenue courante depuis mars.

      Illégales au regard du droit international, ces expulsions illustrent surtout le durcissement constant de la politique migratoire de l’Europe depuis 20 ans. Elles témoignent aussi d’un processus mondial de « pixellisation » des frontières : celles-ci ne se réduisent pas à des lignes mais à un ensemble de points plus ou moins en amont ou en aval (ports, aéroports, eaux territoriales…), où opèrent les polices frontalières.
      La fin de la fin des frontières

      Plus largement, le récent ouvrage de Stéphane Rosière, Frontières de fer, le cloisonnement du monde, permet de prendre la mesure d’un processus en cours de « rebordering » à travers le monde. À la fois synthèse des recherches récentes sur les frontières et résultats des travaux de l’auteur sur la résurgence de barrières frontalières, le livre est une lecture incontournable sur l’évolution contemporaine des frontières nationales.

      D’autant qu’il n’y a pas si longtemps, la mondialisation semblait promettre l’affaissement des frontières, dans la foulée de la disparition de l’Union soviétique et, corollairement, de la généralisation de l’économie de marché. La Guerre froide terminée annonçait la « fin de l’histoire » et, avec elle, la disparition des limites territoriales héritées de l’époque moderne. Au point de ringardiser, rappelle Stéphane Rosière, les études sur les frontières au sein de la géographie des années 1990, parallèlement au succès d’une valorisation tous azimuts de la mobilité dans le discours politique dominant comme dans les sciences sociales.

      Trente ans après, le monde se réveille avec 25 000 kilomètres de barrières frontalières – record pour l’Inde, avec plus de 3 000 kilomètres de clôtures pour prévenir l’immigration depuis le Bangladesh. Barbelés, murs de briques, caméras, détecteurs de mouvements, grilles électrifiées, les dispositifs de contrôle frontalier fleurissent en continu sur les cinq continents.
      L’âge des « murs anti-pauvres »

      La contradiction n’est qu’apparente. Les barrières du 21e siècle ne ferment pas les frontières mais les cloisonnent – d’où le titre du livre. C’est-à-dire que l’objectif n’est pas de supprimer les flux mondialisés – de personnes et encore moins de marchandises ni de capitaux – mais de les contrôler. Les « teichopolitiques », terme qui recouvre, pour Stéphane Rosière, les politiques de cloisonnement de l’espace, matérialisent un « ordre mondial asymétrique et coercitif », dans lequel on valorise la mobilité des plus riches tout en assignant les populations pauvres à résidence.

      De fait, on observe que les barrières frontalières redoublent des discontinuités économiques majeures. Derrière l’argument de la sécurité, elles visent à contenir les mouvements migratoires des régions les plus pauvres vers des pays mieux lotis économiquement : du Mexique vers les États-Unis, bien sûr, ou de l’Afrique vers l’Europe, mais aussi de l’Irak vers l’Arabie Saoudite ou du Pakistan vers l’Iran.

      Les dispositifs de contrôle frontalier sont des outils parmi d’autres d’une « implacable hiérarchisation » des individus en fonction de leur nationalité. Comme l’a montré le géographe Matthew Sparke à propos de la politique migratoire nord-américaine, la population mondiale se trouve divisée entre une classe hypermobile de citoyen·ne·s « business-class » et une masse entravée de citoyen·ne·s « low-cost ». C’est le sens du « passport index » publié chaque année par le cabinet Henley : alors qu’un passeport japonais ou allemand donne accès à plus de 150 pays, ce chiffre descend en-dessous de 30 avec un passeport afghan ou syrien.
      Le business des barrières

      Si les frontières revêtent une dimension économique, c’est aussi parce qu’elles sont un marché juteux. À l’heure où les pays européens ferment des lits d’hôpital faute de moyens, on retiendra ce chiffre ahurissant : entre 2005 et 2016, le budget de Frontex, l’agence en charge du contrôle des frontières de l’Union européenne, est passé de 6,3 à 238,7 millions d’euros. À quoi s’ajoutent les budgets colossaux débloqués pour construire et entretenir les barrières – budgets entourés d’opacité et sur lesquels, témoigne l’auteur, il est particulièrement difficile d’enquêter, faute d’obtenir… des fonds publics.

      L’argent public alimente ainsi une « teichoéconomie » dont les principaux bénéficiaires sont des entreprises du BTP et de la sécurité européennes, nord-américaines, israéliennes et, de plus en plus, indiennes ou saoudiennes. Ce complexe sécuritaro-industriel, identifié par Julien Saada, commercialise des dispositifs de surveillance toujours plus sophistiqués et prospère au rythme de l’inflation de barrières entre pays, mais aussi entre quartiers urbains.

      Un business d’autant plus florissant qu’il s’auto-entretient, dès lors que les mêmes entreprises vendent des armes. On sait que les ventes d’armes, alimentant les guerres, stimulent les migrations : un « cercle vertueux » s’enclenche pour les entreprises du secteur, appelées à la rescousse pour contenir des mouvements de population qu’elles participent à encourager.
      « Mourir aux frontières »

      Bénéfices juteux, profits politiques, les barrières font des heureux. Elles tuent aussi et l’ouvrage de Stéphane Rosière se termine sur un décompte macabre. C’est, dit-il, une « guerre migratoire » qui est en cours. Guerre asymétrique, elle oppose la police armée des puissances économiques à des groupes le plus souvent désarmés, venant de périphéries dominées économiquement et dont on entend contrôler la mobilité. Au nom de la souveraineté des États, cette guerre fait plusieurs milliers de victimes par an et la moindre des choses est de « prendre la pleine mesure de la létalité contemporaine aux frontières ».

      Sur le blog :

      – Une synthèse sur les murs frontaliers : http://geographiesenmouvement.blogs.liberation.fr/2019/01/28/lamour-des-murs

      – Le compte rendu d’un autre livre incontournable sur les frontières : http://geographiesenmouvement.blogs.liberation.fr/2019/08/03/frontieres-en-mouvement

      – Une synthèse sur les barricades à l’échelle intraurbaine : http://geographiesenmouvement.blogs.liberation.fr/2020/10/21/gated-communities-le-paradis-entre-quatre-murs

      http://geographiesenmouvement.blogs.liberation.fr/2020/11/05/le-business-meurtrier-des-frontieres

    • How Private Security Firms Profit Off the Refugee Crisis

      The UK has pumped money to corporations turning #Calais into a bleak fortress.

      Tall white fences lined with barbed wire – welcome to Calais. The city in northern France is an obligatory stop for anyone trying to reach the UK across the channel. But some travellers are more welcome than others, and in recent decades, a slew of private security companies have profited millions of pounds off a very expensive – an unattractive – operation to keep migrants from crossing.

      Every year, thousands of passengers and lorries take the ferry at the Port of Calais-Fréthun, a trading route heavily relied upon by the UK for imports. But the entrance to the port looks more like a maximum-security prison than your typical EU border. Even before Brexit, the UK was never part of the Schengen area, which allows EU residents to move freely across 26 countries. For decades, Britain has strictly controlled its southern border in an attempt to stop migrants and asylum seekers from entering.

      As early as 2000, the Port of Calais was surrounded by a 2.8 metre-high fence to prevent people from jumping into lorries waiting at the ferry departure point. In 1999, the Red Cross set up a refugee camp in the nearby town of Sangatte which quickly became overcrowded. The UK pushed for it to be closed in 2002 and then negotiated a treaty with France to regulate migration between the two countries.

      The 2003 Le Toquet Treaty allowed the UK to check travellers on French soil before their arrival, and France to do the same on UK soil. Although the deal looks fair on paper, in practice it unduly burdens French authorities, as there are more unauthorised migrants trying to reach the UK from France than vice versa.

      The treaty effectively moved the UK border onto French territory, but people still need to cross the channel to request asylum. That’s why thousands of refugees from conflict zones like Syria, Eritrea, Afghanistan, Sudan and Somalia have found themselves stranded in Calais, waiting for a chance to cross illegally – often in search of family members who’ve already made it to the UK. Many end up paying people smugglers to hide them in lorries or help them cross by boat.

      These underlying issues came to a head during the Syrian crisis, when refugees began camping out near Calais in 2014. The so-called Calais Jungle became infamous for its squalid conditions, and at its peak, hosted more than 7,000 people. They were all relocated to other centres in France before the camp was bulldozed in 2016. That same year, the UK also decided to build a €2.7 million border wall in Calais to block access to the port from the camp, but the project wasn’t completed until after the camp was cleared, attracting a fair deal of criticism. Between 2015 and 2018, the UK spent over €110 million on border security in France, only to top it up with over €56 million more in 2018.

      But much of this public money actually flows into the accounts of private corporations, hired to build and maintain the high-tech fences and conduct security checks. According to a 2020 report by the NGO Care4Calais, there are more than 40 private security companies working in the city. One of the biggest, Eamus Cork Solutions (ECS), was founded by a former Calais police officer in 2004 and is reported to have benefited at least €30 million from various contracts as of 2016.

      Stéphane Rosière, a geography professor at the University of Reims, wrote his book Iron Borders (only available in French) about the many border walls erected around the world. Rosière calls this the “security-industrial” complex – private firms that have largely replaced the traditional military-industrial sector in Europe since WW2.

      “These companies are getting rich by making security systems adaptable to all types of customers – individuals, companies or states,” he said. According to Rosière, three-quarters of the world’s border security barriers were built in the 21st century.

      Brigitte, a pensioner living close to the former site of the Calais Jungle, has seen her town change drastically over the past two decades. “Everything is cordoned off with wire mesh," she said. "I have the before and after photos, and it’s not a pretty sight. It’s just wire, wire, wire.” For the past 15 years, Brigitte has been opening her garage door for asylum seekers to stop by for a cup of tea and charge their phones and laptops, earning her the nickname "Mama Charge”.

      “For a while, the purpose of these fences and barriers was to stop people from crossing,” said François Guennoc, president of L’Auberge des Migrants, an NGO helping displaced migrants in Calais.

      Migrants have still been desperate enough to try their luck. “They risked a lot to get into the port area, and many of them came back bruised and battered,” Guennoc said. Today, walls and fences are mainly being built to deter people from settling in new camps near Calais after being evicted.

      In the city centre, all public squares have been fenced off. The city’s bridges have been fitted with blue lights and even with randomly-placed bike racks, so people won’t sleep under them.

      “They’ve also been cutting down trees for some time now,” said Brigitte, pointing to a patch near her home that was once woods. Guennoc said the authorities are now placing large rocks in areas where NGOs distribute meals and warm clothes, to prevent displaced people from receiving the donations. “The objective of the measures now is also to make the NGOs’ work more difficult,” he said.

      According to the NGO Refugee Rights Europe, about 1,500 men, women and minors were living in makeshift camps in and around Calais as of April 2020. In July 2020, French police raided a camp of over 500 people, destroying residents’ tents and belongings, in the largest operation since the Calais Jungle was cleared. An investigation by Slate found that smaller camps are cleared almost every day by the French police, even in the middle of winter. NGOs keep providing new tents and basic necessities to displaced residents, but they are frustrated by the waste of resources. The organisations are also concerned about COVID-19 outbreaks in the camps.

      As VICE World News has previously reported, the crackdown is only pushing people to take more desperate measures to get into the UK. Boat crossings reached record-highs in 2020, and four people have died since August 2020 while trying to cross, by land and sea. “When you create an obstacle, people find a way to get around it,” Guennoc said. “If they build a wall all the way along the coast to prevent boat departures, people will go to Normandy – and that has already started.” Crossing the open sea puts migrants at even greater risk.

      Rosière agrees security measures are only further endangering migrants.“All locks eventually open, no matter how complex they may be. It’s just a matter of time.”

      He believes the only parties who stand to profit from the status quo are criminal organisations and private security firms: “At the end of the day, this a messed-up use of public money.”

      https://www.vice.com/en/article/wx8yax/how-private-security-firms-profit-off-the-refugee-crisis

      En français:
      À Calais, la ville s’emmure
      https://www.vice.com/fr/article/wx8yax/a-calais-la-ville-semmure

    • Financing Border Wars. The border industry, its financiers and human rights

      This report seeks to explore and highlight the extent of today’s global border security industry, by focusing on the most important geographical markets—Australia, Europe, USA—listing the human rights violations and risks involved in each sector of the industry, profiling important corporate players and putting a spotlight on the key investors in each company.

      Executive summary

      Migration will be one of the defining human rights issues of the 21st century. The growing pressures to migrate combined with the increasingly militarised state security response will only exacerbate an already desperate situation for refugees and migrants. Refugees already live in a world where human rights are systematically denied. So as the climate crisis deepens and intersects with other economic and political crises, forcing more people from their homes, and as states retreat to ever more authoritarian security-based responses, the situation for upholding and supporting migrants’ rights looks ever bleaker.

      States, most of all those in the richest countries, bear the ultimate responsibility to uphold the human rights of refugees and migrants recognised under International Human Rights Law. Yet corporations are also deeply implicated. It is their finance, their products, their services, their infrastructure that underpins the structures of state migration and border control. In some cases, they are directly involved in human rights violations themselves; in other cases they are indirectly involved as they facilitate the system that systematically denies refugees and migrants their rights. Most of all, through their lobbying, involvement in government ‘expert’ groups, revolving doors with state agencies, it becomes clear that corporations are not just accidental beneficiaries of the militarisation of borders. Rather they actively shape the policies from which they profit and therefore share responsibility for the human rights violations that result.

      This state-corporate fusion is best described as a Border Industrial Complex, drawing on former US President Eisenhower’s warning of the dangers of a Military-Industrial Complex. Indeed it is noticeable that many of the leading border industries today are also military companies, seeking to diversify their security products to a rapidly expanding new market.

      This report seeks to explore and highlight the extent of today’s global border security industry, by focusing on the most important geographical markets—Australia, Europe, USA—listing the human rights violations and risks involved in each sector of the industry, profiling important corporate players and putting a spotlight on the key investors in each company.
      A booming industry

      The border industry is experiencing spectacular growth, seemingly immune to austerity or economic downturns. Market research agencies predict annual growth of the border security market of between 7.2% and 8.6%, reaching a total of $65–68 billion by 2025. The largest expansion is in the global Biometrics and Artificial Intelligence (AI) markets. Markets and Markets forecasts the biometric systems market to double from $33 billion in 2019 to $65.3 billion by 2024—of which biometrics for migration purposes will be a significant sector. It says that the AI market will equal US$190.61 billion by 2025.

      The report investigates five key sectors of the expanding industry: border security (including monitoring, surveillance, walls and fences), biometrics and smart borders, migrant detention, deportation, and audit and consultancy services. From these sectors, it profiles 23 corporations as significant actors: Accenture, Airbus, Booz Allen Hamilton, Classic Air Charter, Cobham, CoreCivic, Deloitte, Elbit, Eurasylum, G4S, GEO Group, IBM, IDEMIA, Leonardo, Lockheed Martin, Mitie, Palantir, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Serco, Sopra Steria, Thales, Thomson Reuters, Unisys.

      – The border security and control field, the technological infrastructure of security and surveillance at the border, is led by US, Australian, European and Israeli firms including Airbus, Elbit, Leonardo, Lockheed Martin, Airbus, Leonardo and Thales— all of which are among the world’s major arms sellers. They benefit not only from border contracts within the EU, US, and Australia but also increasingly from border externalisation programmes funded by these same countries. Jean Pierre Talamoni, head of sales and marketing at Airbus Defence and Space (ADS), said in 2016 that he estimates that two thirds of new military market opportunities over the next 10 years will be in Asia and the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. Companies are also trying to muscle in on providing the personnel to staff these walls, including border guards.

      - The Smart Borders sector encompasses the use of a broad range of (newer) technologies, including biometrics (such as fingerprints and iris-scans), AI and phone and social media tracking. The goal is to speed up processes for national citizens and other acceptable travellers and stop or deport unwanted migrants through the use of more sophisticated IT and biometric systems. Key corporations include large IT companies, such as IBM and Unisys, and multinational services company Accenture for whom migration is part of their extensive portfolio, as well as small firms, such as IDEMIA and Palantir Technologies, for whom migration-related work is central. The French public–private company Civipol, co-owned by the state and several large French arms companies, is another key player, selected to set up fingerprint databases of the whole population of Mali and Senegal.

      – Deportation. With the exception of the UK and the US, it is uncommon to privatise deportation. The UK has hired British company Mitie for its whole deportation process, while Classic Air Charter dominates in the US. Almost all major commercial airlines, however, are also involved in deportations. Newsweek reported, for example, that in the US, 93% of the 1,386 ICE deportation flights to Latin American countries on commercial airlines in 2019 were facilitated by United Airlines (677), American Airlines (345) and Delta Airlines (266).

      - Detention. The Global Detention Project lists over 1,350 migrant detention centres worldwide, of which over 400 are located in Europe, almost 200 in the US and nine in Australia. In many EU countries, the state manages detention centres, while in other countries (e.g. Australia, UK, USA) there are completely privatised prisons. Many other countries have a mix of public and private involvement, such as state facilities with private guards. Australia outsourced refugee detention to camps outside its territories. Australian service companies Broadspectrum and Canstruct International managed the detention centres, while the private security companies G4S, Paladin Solutions and Wilson Security were contracted for security services, including providing guards. Migrant detention in third countries is also an increasingly important part of EU migration policy, with the EU funding construction of migrant detention centres in ten non-EU countries.

      - Advisory and audit services are a more hidden part of public policies and practices, but can be influential in shaping new policies. A striking example is Civipol, which in 2003 wrote a study on maritime borders for the European Commission, which adopted its key policy recommendations in October 2003 and in later policy documents despite its derogatory language against refugees. Civipol’s study also laid foundations for later measures on border externalisation, including elements of the migration deal with Turkey and the EU’s Operation Sophia. Since 2003 Civipol has received funding for a large number of migration-related projects, especially in African countries. Between 2015 and 2017, it was the fourth most-funded organisation under the EU Trust Fund. Other prominent corporations in this sector include Eurasylum, as well as major international consultancy firms, particularly Deloitte and PricewaterhouseCoopers, for which migration-related work is part of their expansive portfolio.

      Financing the industry

      The markets for military and border control procurement are characterized by massively capital intensive investments and contracts, which would not be possible without the involvement of financial actors. Using data from marketscreener.com, the report shows that the world’s largest investment companies are also among the major shareholders in the border industry.

      – The Vanguard Group owns shares in 15 of the 17 companies, including over 15% of the shares of CoreCivic and GEO Group that manage private prisons and detention facilities.

      - Other important investors are Blackrock, which is a major shareholder in 11 companies, Capital Research and Management (part of the Capital Group), with shares in arms giants Airbus and Lockheed Martin, and State Street Global Advisors (SsgA), which owns over 15% of Lockheed Martin shares and is also a major shareholder in six other companies.

      - Although these giant asset management firms dominate, two of the profiled companies, Cobham and IDEMIA, are currently owned by the private equity firm Advent International. Advent specialises in buyouts and restructuring, and it seems likely that it will attempt to split up Cobham in the hope of making a profit by selling on the component companies to other owners.

      - In addition, three large European arms companies, Airbus, Thales and Leonardo, active in the border security market, are partly owned by the governments of the countries where they are headquartered.

      In all cases, therefore, the financing depends on our money. In the case of state ownership, through our taxes, and in terms of asset management funds, through the way individual savings, pension funds, insurance companies and university endowments are directly invested in these companies via the giant Asset Management Funds. This financing means that the border industry survives on at least the tacit approved use of the public’s funds which makes it vulnerable to social pressure as the human rights costs of the industry become ever more clear.
      Human rights and the border industry

      Universal human rights apply to every single human being, including refugees and migrants. While the International Bill of Human Rights provides the foundation, including defining universal rights that are important in the context of migration, such as the right to life, liberty and security of person, the right to freedom from torture or cruel or inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment, and freedom from discrimination, there are other instruments such as the United Nations Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees (Refugee Convention or Geneva Convention) of 1951 that are also relevant. There are also regional agreements, including the Organisation of African Unity Convention Governing the Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems in Africa and the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) that play a role relevant to the countries that have ratified them.

      Yet despite these important and legally binding human rights agreements, the human rights situation for refugees and migrants has become ever more desperate. States frequently deny their rights under international law, such as the right to seek asylum or non-refoulement principles, or more general rights such as the freedom from torture, cruel or inhumane treatment. There is a gap with regard to effective legal means or grievance mechanisms to counter this or to legally enforce or hold to account states that fail to implement instruments such as the UDHR and the Refugee Convention of 1951. A Permanent Peoples Tribunal in 2019 even concluded that ‘taken together, the immigration and asylum policies and practices of the EU and its Member States constitute a total denial of the fundamental rights of people and migrants, and are veritable crimes against humanity’. A similar conclusion can be made of the US and Australian border and immigration regime.

      The increased militarisation of border security worldwide and state-sanctioned hostility toward migrants has had a deeply detrimental impact on the human rights of refugees and migrants.

      – Increased border security has led to direct violence against refugees, pushbacks with the risk of returning people to unsafe countries and inhumane circumstances (contravening the principle of non-refoulement), and a disturbing rise in avoidable deaths, as countries close off certain migration routes, forcing migrants to look for other, often more dangerous, alternatives and pushing them into the arms of criminal smuggling networks.

      – The increased use of autonomous systems of border security such as drones threaten new dangers related to human rights. There is already evidence that they push migrants to take more dangerous routes, but there is also concern that there is a gradual trend towards weaponized systems that will further threaten migrants’ lives.

      – The rise in deportations has threatened fundamental human rights including the right to family unity, the right to seek asylum, the right to humane treatment in detention, the right to due process, and the rights of children’. There have been many instances of violence in the course of deportations, sometimes resulting in death or permanent harm, against desperate people who try to do everything to prevent being deported. Moreover, deportations often return refugees to unsafe countries, where they face violence, persecution, discrimination and poverty.

      - The widespread detention of migrants also fundamentally undermines their human rights . There have been many reports of violence and neglect by guards and prison authorities, limited access to adequate legal and medical support, a lack of decent food, overcrowding and poor and unhealthy conditions. Privatisation of detention exacerbates these problems, because companies benefit from locking up a growing number of migrants and minimising costs.

      – The building of major migration databases such as EU’s Eurodac and SIS II, VIS gives rise to a range of human rights concerns, including issues of privacy, civil liberties, bias leading to discrimination—worsened by AI processes -, and misuse of collected information. Migrants are already subject to unprecedented levels of surveillance, and are often now treated as guinea pigs where even more intrusive technologies such as facial recognition and social media tracking are tried out without migrants consent.

      The trend towards externalisation of migration policies raises new concerns as it seeks to put the human costs of border militarisation beyond the border and out of public sight. This has led to the EU, US and Australia all cooperating with authoritarian regimes to try and prevent migrants from even getting close to their borders. Moreover as countries donate money, equipment or training to security forces in authoritarian regimes, they end up expanding and strengthening their capacities which leads to a rise in human rights violations more broadly. Nowhere are the human rights consequences of border externalisation policies clearer than in the case of Libya, where the EU and individual member states (in particular Italy and Malta) funding, training and cooperation with security forces and militias have led to violence at the borders, murder, disappearances, rape, enslavement and abuse of migrants in the country and torture in detention centres.

      The 23 corporations profiled in this report have all been involved in or connected to policies and practices that have come under fire because of violations of the human rights of refugees and migrants. As mentioned earlier, sometimes the companies are directly responsible for human rights violations or concerns. In other cases, they are indirectly responsible through their contribution to a border infrastructure that denies human rights and through lobbying to influence policy-making to prioritize militarized responses to migration. 11 of the companies profiled publicly proclaim their commitment to human rights as signatories to the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs), but as these are weak voluntary codes this has not led to noticeable changes in their business operations related to migration.

      The most prominent examples of direct human rights abuses come from the corporations involved in detention and deportation. Classic Air Charter, Cobham, CoreCivic, Eurasylum, G4S, GEO Group, Mitie and Serco all have faced allegations of violence and abuse by their staff towards migrants. G4S has been one of the companies most often in the spotlight. In 2017, not only were assaults by its staff on migrants at the Brook House immigration removal centre in the UK broadcast by the BBC, but it was also hit with a class suit in Australia by almost 2,000 people who are or were detained at the externalised detention centre on Manus Island, because of physical and psychological injuries as a result of harsh treatment and dangerous conditions. The company eventually settled the case for A$70 million (about $53 million) in the largest-ever human rights class-action settlement. G4S has also faced allegations related to its involvement in deportations.

      The other companies listed all play a pivotal role in the border infrastructure that denies refugees’ human rights. Airbus P-3 Orion surveillance planes of the Australian Air Force, for example, play a part in the highly controversial maritime wall that prevents migrants arriving by boat and leads to their detention in terrible conditions offshore. Lockheed Martin is a leading supplier of border security on the US-Mexico border. Leonardo is one of the main suppliers of drones for Europe’s borders. Thales produces the radar and sensor systems, critical to patrolling the Mediterrean. Elbit Systems provides surveillance technologies to both the EU and US, marketed on their success as technologies used in the separation wall in the Palestinian occupied territories. Accenture, IDEMIA and Sopra Steria manage many border biometric projects. Deloitte has been one of the key consulting companies to the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency since 2003, while PriceWaterhouseCoopers provides similar consultancy services to Frontex and the Australian border forces. IBM, Palantir and UNISYS provide the IT infrastructure that underpins the border and immigration apparatus.
      Time to divest

      The report concludes by calling for campaigns to divest from the border industry. There is a long history of campaigns and movements that call for divestment from industries that support human rights violations—from the campaigns to divest from Apartheid South Africa to more recent campaigns to divest from the fossil fuel industry. The border industry has become an equally morally toxic asset for any financial institution, given the litany of human rights abuses tied to it and the likelihood they will intensify in years to come.

      There are already examples of existing campaigns targeting particular border industries that have borne fruit. A spotlight on US migrant detention, as part of former President Trump’s anti- immigration policies, contributed to six large US banks (Bank of America, BNP Paribas, Fifth Third Bancorp, JPMorgan Chase, SunTrust, and Wells Fargo) publicly announcing that they would not provide new financing to the private prison industry. The two largest public US pension funds, CalSTRS and CalPERS, also decided to divest from the same two companies. Geo Group acknowledged that these acts of ‘public resistance’ hit the company financially, criticising the banks as ‘clearly bow[ing] down to a small group of activists protesting and conducting targeted social media campaigns’.

      Every company involved or accused of human rights violations either denies them or says that they are atypical exceptions to corporate behavior. This report shows however that a militarised border regime built on exclusion will always be a violent apparatus that perpetuates human rights violations. It is a regime that every day locks up refugees in intolerable conditions, separates families causing untold trauma and heartbreak, and causes a devastating death toll as refugees are forced to take unimaginable dangerous journeys because the alternatives are worse. However well-intentioned, any industry that provides services and products for this border regime will bear responsibility for its human consequences and its human rights violations, and over time will suffer their own serious reputational costs for their involvement in this immoral industry. On the other hand, a widespread exodus of the leading corporations on which the border regime depends could force states to change course, and to embrace a politics that protects and upholds the rights of refugees and migrants. Worldwide, social movements and the public are starting to wake up to the human costs of border militarisation and demanding a fundamental change. It is time now for the border industry and their financiers to make a choice.

      https://www.tni.org/en/financingborderwars

      #TNI #rapport
      #industrie_frontalière #militarisation_des_frontières #biométrie #Intelligence_artificielle #AI #IA

      #Accenture #Airbus #Booz_Allen_Hamilton #Classic_Air_Charter #Cobham #CoreCivic #Deloitte #Elbit #Eurasylum #G4S #GEO_Group #IBM #IDEMIA #Leonardo #Lockheed_Martin #Mitie #Palantir #PricewaterhouseCoopers #Serco #Sopra_Steria #Thales #Thomson_Reuters #Unisys
      #contrôles_frontaliers #surveillance #technologie #Jean-Pierre_Talamoni #Airbus_Defence_and_Space (#ADS) #smart_borders #frontières_intelligentes #iris #empreintes_digitales #réseaux_sociaux #IT #Civipol #Mali #Sénégal #renvois #expulsions #déportations #Mitie #Classic_Air_Charter #compagnies_aériennes #United_Airlines #ICE #American_Airlines #Delta_Airlines #rétention #détention_administrative #privatisation #Broadspectrum #Canstruct_International #Paladin_Solutions #Wilson_Security #Operation_Sophia #EU_Trust_Fund #Trust_Fund #externalisation #Eurasylum #Deloitte #PricewaterhouseCoopers #Vanguard_Group #CoreCivic #Blackrock #investisseurs #investissement #Capital_Research_and_Management #Capital_Group #Lockheed_Martin #State_Street_Global_Advisors (#SsgA) #Cobham #IDEMIA #Advent_International #droits_humains #VIS #SIS_II #P-3_Orion #Accenture #Sopra_Steria #Frontex #Australie

    • Outsourcing oppression. How Europe externalises migrant detention beyond its shores

      This report seeks to address the gap and join the dots between Europe’s outsourcing of migrant detention to third countries and the notorious conditions within the migrant detention centres. In a nutshell, Europe calls the shots on migrant detention beyond its shores but is rarely held to account for the deeply oppressive consequences, including arbitrary detention, torture, forced disappearance, violence, sexual violence, and death.

      Key findings

      – The European Union (EU), and its member states, externalise detention to third countries as part of a strategy to keep migrants out at all costs. This leads to migrants being detained and subjected to gross human rights violations in transit countries in Eastern Europe, the Balkans, West Asia and Africa.

      – Candidate countries wishing to join the EU are obligated to detain migrants and stop them from crossing into the EU as a prerequisite for accession to the Union. Funding is made available through pre-accession agreements specifically for the purpose of detaining migrants.

      – Beyond EU candidate countries, this report identifies 22 countries in Africa, Eastern Europe, the Balkans and West Asia where the EU and its member states fund the construction of detention centres, detention related activities such as trainings, or advocate for detention in other ways such as through aggressively pushing for detention legislation or agreeing to relax visa requirements for nationals of these countries in exchange for increased migrant detention.

      - The main goal of detention externalisation is to pre-empt migrants from reaching the external borders of the EU by turning third countries into border outposts. In many cases this involves the EU and its member states propping up and maintaining authoritarian regimes.

      – Europe is in effect following the ‘Australian model’ that has been highly criticised by UN experts and human rights organisations for the torturous conditions inside detention centres. Nevertheless, Europe continues to advance a system that mirrors Australia’s outsourced model, focusing not on guaranteeing the rights of migrants, but instead on deterring and pushing back would-be asylum seekers at all costs.

      - Human rights are systematically violated in detention centres directly and indirectly funded by the EU and its member states, including cases of torture, arbitrary and prolonged detention, sexual violence, no access to legal recourse, humanitarian assistance, or asylum procedures, the detention of victims of trafficking, and many other serious violations in which Europe is implicated.

      - Particularly horrendous is the case of Libya, which continues to receive financial and political support from Europe despite mounting evidence of brutality, enslavement, torture, forced disappearance and death. The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), implement EU policies in Libya and, according to aid officials, actively whitewash the consequences of European policies to safeguard substantial EU funding.

      - Not only does the EU deport and push back migrants to unsafe third countries, it actively finances and coercively pushes for their detention in these countries. Often they have no choice but to sign ‘voluntary’ agreements to be returned to their countries of origin as the only means of getting out of torturous detention facilities.

      - The EU implements a carrot and stick approach, in particular in its dealings with Africa, prolonging colonialist dynamics and uneven power structures – in Niger, for example, the EU pushed for legislation on detention, in exchange for development aid funding.

      – The EU envisages a greater role for migrant detention in third countries going forward, as was evidenced in the European Commission’s New Pact on Migration and Asylum.

      - The EU acts on the premise of containment and deterrence, namely, that if migrants seeking to reach Europe are intercepted and detained along that journey, they will be deterred from making the journey in the first place. This approach completely misses the point that people migrate to survive, often fleeing war and other forms of violence. The EU continues to overlook the structural reasons behind why people flee and the EU’s own role in provoking such migration.

      – The border industrial complex profits from the increased securitisation of borders. Far from being passive spectators, the military and security industry is actively involved in shaping EU border policies by positioning themselves as experts on the issue. We can already see a trend of privatising migrant detention, paralleling what is happening in prison systems worldwide.

      https://www.tni.org/en/outsourcingoppression

      pour télécharger le rapport :
      https://www.tni.org/files/publication-downloads/outsourcingoppression-report-tni.pdf

      #externalisation #rétention #détention #détention_arbitraire #violence #disparitions #disparitions_forcées #violence #violence_sexuelle #morts #mort #décès #Afrique #Europe_de_l'Est #Balkans #Asie #modèle_australien #EU #UE #Union_européenne #torture #Libye #droits_humains #droits_fondamentaux #HCR #UNHCR #OIM #IOM #dissuasion #privatisation

  • Quand les multinationales attaquent les États

    À l’automne 2016, des millions d’Européens descendent dans la rue pour protester contre le Ceta, le traité de libre-échange avec le Canada. Son rejet par la Wallonie, par la voix de son ministre-président Paul Magnette, plonge alors l’UE dans une grave crise et place les tribunaux d’arbitrage sous le feu des projecteurs – et des critiques. Ce dispositif, prévu dans le cadre de nombreux accords commerciaux internationaux, permet à des multinationales d’attaquer les États devant des juges privés – des avocats d’affaires –, afin de réclamer la compensation d’un manque à gagner réel ou potentiel induit par un changement de législation. En 2016, Cosigo Resources Ltd. a ainsi déposé une demande d’arbitrage contre la Colombie : en classant « parc naturel national » un territoire amazonien sacré, Bogotá a annulé la concession minière de la compagnie canadienne, laquelle estime son préjudice à 16 milliards de dollars, soit environ 20 % du budget national colombien...
    « L’arbitrage est un système profondément défaillant. Il n’est pas juste, pas indépendant, et il est loin d’être équilibré », assène le professeur de droit canadien Gus Van Harten. De la Colombie à l’Allemagne en passant par le Pérou, aux prises avec la multinationale Renco, dont la fonderie de plomb de La Oroya (la « Tchernobyl des Andes ») crache des fumées toxiques qui empoisonnent les enfants, Claire Alet et Cécile Ancieu (La Dette, une spirale infernale ?) ont enquêté dans les arcanes de cette justice opaque, au pouvoir démesuré. Créé par les États, dans l’objectif d’attirer des investisseurs, ce système fragilise leur capacité à légiférer sur l’environnement, la santé, les conditions de travail, le tout au détriment des citoyens, qui seront en outre amenés à payer l’addition.


    http://www.film-documentaire.fr/4DACTION/w_fiche_film/54819_1
    #film #documentaire
    #Etat #Etat-nation #arbitrage_international #multinationales #tribunaux_d'arbitrage_international #dédommagement #procès_en_arbitrage #justice #droits_fondamentaux #CETA #TIPP #Colombie #mines #or #extractivisme #peuples_autochtones #Cosigo_Resources #litiges_en_arbitrage #titres_miniers #traité_de_libre-échange #accord_de_libre-échange #développement #développementalisme #Makuna #réserve_naturelle #résistance #exploitation #sites_sacrés #Tanimuka #exploitation_minière #Tobie_mining_energy #environnement #responsabilité_des_entreprises #investissements_étrangers #ISDS #plainte #gains_potentiels #manque_à_gagner #exploitation_indirecte #globalisation #mondialisation #dissuasion #Gus_Van_Harten #secret #Vattenfall #Allemagne #nucléaire #La_Oroya #Pérou #Doe_Run #Renco

  • Traversées de la Manche par des migrants : les associations “révoltées” par une publicité du gouvernement
    La publicité diffusée par le Ministère de l’Intérieur appelle les citoyens à signaler tout comportement suspect ou matériel abandonné.

    "Hypocrite, odieux et insupportable" ... Ce sont les mots très durs utilisés pour décrire la dernière campagne du ministère de l’Intérieur pour empêcher les traversées de la Manche par des migrants, dans le communiqué d’un collectif de 18 associations œuvrant en faveur des migrants sur la Côte d’Opale.

    La campagne en question montre le dessin d’une embarcation, semblable à celles que des centaines de migrants ont pris pour tenter de rejoindre l’Angleterre depuis novembre 2018. Le gouvernement y enjoint : "Aidez-nous à sauver des vies" en appelant à signaler les rassemblements nocturnes sur les plages ou "tout comportement non marin".

    "Votre action peut contribuer à sauver des vies et à lutter contre le trafic d’êtres humains et les réseaux criminels" peut-on encore lire dans cette publication, diffusée à travers la presse locale et régionale depuis près d’un mois.

    "Cette publicité n’est ni plus ni moins qu’un appel à la délation, une tentative de transformer chaque citoyen en auxiliaire de la police" dénoncent les bénévoles, pour qui "c’est la politique hypocrite de non-accueil des gouvernements français et anglais qui pousse les exilés à prendre un maximum de risques".
    https://france3-regions.francetvinfo.fr/hauts-de-france/pas-calais/calais/traversees-manche-migrants-associations-revoltees-publi

    La réaction des associations à la campagne du ministère de l’Intérieur

    https://fr.scribd.com/document/419905527/La-reaction-des-associations-a-la-campagne-du-ministere-de-l-Interieur#fr
    #dissuasion #campagne #Manche #France #mer #asile #migrations #réfugiés

    Ajouté à cette métaliste sur les campagnes de dissuasion de différents pays :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/763551

  • USA : Dublin façon frontière Mexique/USA

    Faute d’accord avec le #Guatemala (pour l’instant bloqué du fait du recours déposé par plusieurs membres de l’opposition devant la Cour constitutionnelle) et le #Mexique les désignant comme des « #pays_sûr », les USA ont adopté une nouvelle réglementation en matière d’#asile ( « #Interim_Final_Rule » - #IFR), spécifiquement pour la #frontière avec le Mexique, qui n’est pas sans faire penser au règlement de Dublin : les personnes qui n’auront pas sollicité l’asile dans un des pays traversés en cours de route avant d’arriver aux USA verront leur demande rejetée.
    Cette règle entre en vigueur aujourd’hui et permet donc le #refoulement de toute personne « who enters or attempts to enter the United States across the southern border, but who did not apply for protection from persecution or torture where it was available in at least one third country outside the alien’s country of citizenship, nationality, or last lawful habitual residence through which he or she transited en route to the United States. »
    Lien vers le règlement : https://www.dhs.gov/news/2019/07/15/dhs-and-doj-issue-third-country-asylum-rule
    Plusieurs associations dont ACLU (association US) vont déposer un recours visant à le faire invalider.
    Les USA recueillent et échangent déjà des données avec les pays d’Amérique centrale et latine qu’ils utilisent pour débouter les demandeurs d’asile, par exemple avec le Salvador : https://psmag.com/social-justice/homeland-security-uses-foreign-databases-to-monitor-gang-activity

    Reçu via email le 16.07.2019 de @pascaline

    #USA #Etats-Unis #Dublin #Dublin_façon_USA #loi #Dublin_aux_USA #législation #asile #migrations #réfugiés #El_Salvador

    • Trump Administration Implementing ’3rd Country’ Rule On Migrants Seeking Asylum

      The Trump administration is moving forward with a tough new asylum rule in its campaign to slow the flow of Central American migrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border. Asylum-seeking immigrants who pass through a third country en route to the U.S. must first apply for refugee status in that country rather than at the U.S. border.

      The restriction will likely face court challenges, opening a new front in the battle over U.S. immigration policies.

      The interim final rule will take effect immediately after it is published in the Federal Register on Tuesday, according to the departments of Justice and Homeland Security.

      The new policy applies specifically to the U.S.-Mexico border, saying that “an alien who enters or attempts to enter the United States across the southern border after failing to apply for protection in a third country outside the alien’s country of citizenship, nationality, or last lawful habitual residence through which the alien transited en route to the United States is ineligible for asylum.”

      “Until Congress can act, this interim rule will help reduce a major ’pull’ factor driving irregular migration to the United States,” Homeland Security acting Secretary Kevin K. McAleenan said in a statement about the new rule.

      The American Civil Liberties Union said it planned to file a lawsuit to try to stop the rule from taking effect.

      “This new rule is patently unlawful and we will sue swiftly,” Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the ACLU’s national Immigrants’ Rights Project, said in a statement.

      Gelernt accused the Trump administration of “trying to unilaterally reverse our country’s legal and moral commitment to protect those fleeing danger.”

      The strict policy shift would likely bring new pressures and official burdens on Mexico and Guatemala, countries through which migrants and refugees often pass on their way to the U.S.

      On Sunday, Guatemala’s government pulled out of a meeting between President Jimmy Morales and Trump that had been scheduled for Monday, citing ongoing legal questions over whether the country could be deemed a “safe third country” for migrants who want to reach the U.S.

      Hours after the U.S. announced the rule on Monday, Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said it was a unilateral move that will not affect Mexican citizens.

      “Mexico does not agree with measures that limit asylum and refugee status for those who fear for their lives or safety, and who fear persecution in their country of origin,” Ebrard said.

      Ebrard said Mexico will maintain its current policies, reiterating the country’s “respect for the human rights of all people, as well as for its international commitments in matters of asylum and political refuge.”

      According to a DHS news release, the U.S. rule would set “a new bar to eligibility” for anyone seeking asylum. It also allows exceptions in three limited cases:

      “1) an alien who demonstrates that he or she applied for protection from persecution or torture in at least one of the countries through which the alien transited en route to the United States, and the alien received a final judgment denying the alien protection in such country;

      ”(2) an alien who demonstrates that he or she satisfies the definition of ’victim of a severe form of trafficking in persons’ provided in 8 C.F.R. § 214.11; or,

      “(3) an alien who has transited en route to the United States through only a country or countries that were not parties to the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees, the 1967 Protocol, or the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.”

      The DHS release describes asylum as “a discretionary benefit offered by the United States Government to those fleeing persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion.”

      The departments of Justice and Homeland Security are publishing the 58-page asylum rule as the Trump administration faces criticism over conditions at migrant detention centers at the southern border, as well as its “remain in Mexico” policy that requires asylum-seekers who are waiting for a U.S. court date to do so in Mexico rather than in the U.S.

      In a statement about the new rule, U.S. Attorney General William Barr said that current U.S. asylum rules have been abused, and that the large number of people trying to enter the country has put a strain on the system.

      Barr said the number of cases referred to the Department of Justice for proceedings before an immigration judge “has risen exponentially, more than tripling between 2013 and 2018.” The attorney general added, “Only a small minority of these individuals, however, are ultimately granted asylum.”

      https://www.npr.org/2019/07/15/741769333/u-s-sets-new-asylum-rule-telling-potential-refugees-to-apply-elsewhere

    • Le journal The New Yorker : Trump est prêt à signer un accord majeur pour envoyer à l’avenir les demandeurs d’asile au Guatemala

      L’article fait état d’un projet de #plate-forme_externalisée pour examiner les demandes de personnes appréhendées aux frontières US, qui rappelle à la fois une proposition britannique (jamais concrétisée) de 2003 de créer des processing centers extra-européens et la #Pacific_solution australienne, qui consiste à déporter les demandeurs d’asile « illégaux » de toute nationalité dans des pays voisins. Et l’article évoque la « plus grande et la plus troublante des questions : comment le Guatemala pourrait-il faire face à un afflux si énorme de demandeurs ? » Peut-être en demandant conseil aux autorités libyennes et à leurs amis européens ?

      –-> Message reçu d’Alain Morice via la mailling-list Migreurop.

      Trump Is Poised to Sign a Radical Agreement to Send Future Asylum Seekers to Guatemala

      Early next week, according to a D.H.S. official, the Trump Administration is expected to announce a major immigration deal, known as a safe-third-country agreement, with Guatemala. For weeks, there have been reports that negotiations were under way between the two countries, but, until now, none of the details were official. According to a draft of the agreement obtained by The New Yorker, asylum seekers from any country who either show up at U.S. ports of entry or are apprehended while crossing between ports of entry could be sent to seek asylum in Guatemala instead. During the past year, tens of thousands of migrants, the vast majority of them from Central America, have arrived at the U.S. border seeking asylum each month. By law, the U.S. must give them a chance to bring their claims before authorities, even though there’s currently a backlog in the immigration courts of roughly a million cases. The Trump Administration has tried a number of measures to prevent asylum seekers from entering the country—from “metering” at ports of entry to forcing people to wait in Mexico—but, in every case, international obligations held that the U.S. would eventually have to hear their asylum claims. Under this new arrangement, most of these migrants will no longer have a chance to make an asylum claim in the U.S. at all. “We’re talking about something much bigger than what the term ‘safe third country’ implies,” someone with knowledge of the deal told me. “We’re talking about a kind of transfer agreement where the U.S. can send any asylum seekers, not just Central Americans, to Guatemala.”

      From the start of the Trump Presidency, Administration officials have been fixated on a safe-third-country policy with Mexico—a similar accord already exists with Canada—since it would allow the U.S. government to shift the burden of handling asylum claims farther south. The principle was that migrants wouldn’t have to apply for asylum in the U.S. because they could do so elsewhere along the way. But immigrants-rights advocates and policy experts pointed out that Mexico’s legal system could not credibly take on that responsibility. “If you’re going to pursue a safe-third-country agreement, you have to be able to say ‘safe’ with a straight face,” Doris Meissner, a former commissioner of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, told me. Until very recently, the prospect of such an agreement—not just with Mexico but with any other country in Central America—seemed far-fetched. Yet last month, under the threat of steep tariffs on Mexican goods, Trump strong-armed the Mexican government into considering it. Even so, according to a former Mexican official, the government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador is stalling. “They are trying to fight this,” the former official said. What’s so striking about the agreement with Guatemala, however, is that it goes even further than the terms the U.S. sought in its dealings with Mexico. “This is a whole new level,” the person with knowledge of the agreement told me. “In my read, it looks like even those who have never set foot in Guatemala can potentially be sent there.”

      At this point, there are still more questions than answers about what the agreement with Guatemala will mean in practice. A lot will still have to happen before it goes into force, and the terms aren’t final. The draft of the agreement doesn’t provide much clarity on how it will be implemented—another person with knowledge of the agreement said, “This reads like it was drafted by someone’s intern”—but it does offer an exemption for Guatemalan migrants, which might be why the government of Jimmy Morales, a U.S. ally, seems willing to sign on. Guatemala is currently in the midst of Presidential elections; next month, the country will hold a runoff between two candidates, and the current front-runner has been opposed to this type of deal. The Morales government, however, still has six months left in office. A U.N.-backed anti-corruption body called the CICIG, which for years was funded by the U.S. and admired throughout the region, is being dismantled by Morales, whose own family has fallen under investigation for graft and financial improprieties. Signing an immigration deal “would get the Guatemalan government in the U.S.’s good graces,” Stephen McFarland, a former U.S. Ambassador to Guatemala, told me. “The question is, what would they intend to use that status for?” Earlier this week, after Morales announced that he would be meeting with Trump in Washington on Monday, three former foreign ministers of Guatemala petitioned the country’s Constitutional Court to block him from signing the agreement. Doing so, they said, “would allow the current president of the republic to leave the future of our country mortgaged, without any responsibility.”

      The biggest, and most unsettling, question raised by the agreement is how Guatemala could possibly cope with such enormous demands. More people are leaving Guatemala now than any other country in the northern triangle of Central America. Rampant poverty, entrenched political corruption, urban crime, and the effects of climate change have made large swaths of the country virtually uninhabitable. “This is already a country in which the political and economic system can’t provide jobs for all its people,” McFarland said. “There are all these people, their own citizens, that the government and the political and economic system are not taking care of. To get thousands of citizens from other countries to come in there, and to take care of them for an indefinite period of time, would be very difficult.” Although the U.S. would provide additional aid to help the Guatemalan government address the influx of asylum seekers, it isn’t clear whether the country has the administrative capacity to take on the job. According to the person familiar with the safe-third-country agreement, “U.N.H.C.R. [the U.N.’s refugee agency] has not been involved” in the current negotiations. And, for Central Americans transferred to Guatemala under the terms of the deal, there’s an added security risk: many of the gangs Salvadorans and Hondurans are fleeing also operate in Guatemala.

      In recent months, the squalid conditions at borderland detention centers have provoked a broad political outcry in the U.S. At the same time, a worsening asylum crisis has been playing out south of the U.S. border, beyond the immediate notice of concerned Americans. There, the Trump Administration is quietly delivering on its promise to redraw American asylum practice. Since January, under a policy called the Migration Protection Protocols (M.P.P.), the U.S. government has sent more than fifteen thousand asylum seekers to Mexico, where they now must wait indefinitely as their cases inch through the backlogged American immigration courts. Cities in northern Mexico, such as Tijuana and Juarez, are filling up with desperate migrants who are exposed to violent crime, extortion, and kidnappings, all of which are on the rise.This week, as part of the M.P.P., the U.S. began sending migrants to Tamaulipas, one of Mexico’s most violent states and a stronghold for drug cartels that, for years, have brutalized migrants for money and for sport.

      Safe-third-country agreements are notoriously difficult to enforce. The logistics are complex, and the outcomes tend not to change the harried calculations of asylum seekers as they flee their homes. These agreements, according to a recent study by the Migration Policy Institute, are “unlikely to hold the key to solving the crisis unfolding at the U.S. southern border.” The Trump Administration has already cut aid to Central America, and the U.S. asylum system remains in dire need of improvement. But there’s also little question that the agreement with Guatemala will reduce the number of people who reach, and remain in, the U.S. If the President has made the asylum crisis worse, he’ll also be able to say he’s improving it—just as he can claim credit for the decline in the number of apprehensions at the U.S. border last month. That was the result of increased enforcement efforts by the Mexican government acting under U.S. pressure.

      There’s also no reason to expect that the Trump Administration will abandon its efforts to force the Mexicans into a safe-third-country agreement as well. “The Mexican government thought that the possibility of a safe-third-country agreement with Guatemala had fallen apart because of the elections there,” the former Mexican official told me. “The recent news caught top Mexican officials by surprise.” In the next month, the two countries will continue immigration talks, and, again, Mexico will face mounting pressure to accede to American demands. “The U.S. has used the agreement with Guatemala to convince the Mexicans to sign their own safe-third-country agreement,” the former official said. “Its argument is that the number of migrants Mexico will receive will be lower now.”

      https://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/trump-poised-to-sign-a-radical-agreement-to-send-future-asylum-seekers-to
      #externalisation

    • After Tariff Threat, Trump Says Guatemala Has Agreed to New Asylum Rules

      President Trump on Friday again sought to block migrants from Central America from seeking asylum, announcing an agreement with Guatemala to require people who travel through that country to seek refuge from persecution there instead of in the United States.

      American officials said the deal could go into effect within weeks, though critics vowed to challenge it in court, saying that Guatemala is itself one of the most dangerous countries in the world — hardly a refuge for those fleeing gangs and government violence.

      Mr. Trump had been pushing for a way to slow the flow of migrants streaming across the Mexican border and into the United States in recent months. This week, the president had threatened to impose tariffs on Guatemala, to tax money that Guatemalan migrants in the United States send back to family members, or to ban all travel from the country if the agreement were not signed.

      Joined in the Oval Office on Friday by Interior Minister Enrique Degenhart of Guatemala, Mr. Trump said the agreement would end what he has described as a crisis at the border, which has been overwhelmed by hundreds of thousands of families fleeing violence and persecution in El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala.
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      “These are bad people,” Mr. Trump told reporters after a previously unannounced signing ceremony. He said the agreement would “end widespread abuse of the system and the crippling crisis on our border.”

      Officials did not release the English text of the agreement or provide many details about how it would be put into practice along the United States border with Mexico. Mr. Trump announced the deal in a Friday afternoon Twitter post that took Guatemalan politicians and leaders at immigration advocacy groups by surprise.

      Kevin K. McAleenan, the acting secretary of homeland security, described the document signed by the two countries as a “safe third” agreement that would make migrants ineligible for protection in the United States if they had traveled through Guatemala and did not first apply for asylum there.

      Instead of being returned home, however, the migrants would be sent back to Guatemala, which under the agreement would be designated as a safe place for them to live.

      “They would be removable, back to Guatemala, if they want to seek an asylum claim,” said Mr. McAleenan, who likened the agreement to similar arrangements in Europe.
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      The move was the latest attempt by Mr. Trump to severely limit the ability of refugees to win protection in the United States. A new regulation that would have also banned most asylum seekers was blocked by a judge in San Francisco earlier this week.

      But the Trump administration is determined to do everything it can to stop the flow of migrants at the border, which has infuriated the president. Mr. Trump has frequently told his advisers that he sees the border situation as evidence of a failure to make good on his campaign promise to seal the border from dangerous immigrants.

      More than 144,200 migrants were taken into custody at the southwest border in May, the highest monthly total in 13 years. Arrests at the border declined by 28 percent in June after efforts in Mexico and the United States to stop migrants from Central America.

      Late Friday, the Guatemalan government released the Spanish text of the deal, which is called a “cooperative agreement regarding the examination of protection claims.” In an earlier statement announcing the agreement, the government had referred to an implementation plan for Salvadorans and Hondurans. It does not apply to Guatemalans who request asylum in the United States.

      By avoiding any mention of a “safe third country” agreement, President Jimmy Morales of Guatemala appeared to be trying to sidestep a recent court ruling blocking him from signing a deal with the United States without the approval of his country’s congress.

      Mr. Morales will leave office in January. One of the candidates running to replace him, the conservative Alejandro Giammattei, said that it was “irresponsible” for Mr. Morales to have agreed to an accord without revealing its contents first.

      “It is up to the next government to attend to this negotiation,” Mr. Giammattei wrote on Twitter. His opponent, Sandra Torres, had opposed any safe-third-country agreement when it first appeared that Mr. Morales was preparing to sign one.

      Legal groups in the United States said the immediate effect of the agreement will not be clear until the administration releases more details. But based on the descriptions of the deal, they vowed to ask a judge to block it from going into effect.

      “Guatemala can neither offer a safe nor fair and full process, and nobody could plausibly argue otherwise,” said Lee Gelernt, an American Civil Liberties Union lawyer who argued against other recent efforts to limit asylum. “There’s no way they have the capacity to provide a full and fair procedure, much less a safe one.”

      American asylum laws require that virtually all migrants who arrive at the border must be allowed to seek refuge in the United States, but the law allows the government to quickly deport migrants to a country that has signed a “safe third” agreement.

      But critics said that the law clearly requires the “safe third” country to be a truly safe place where migrants will not be in danger. And it requires that the country have the ability to provide a “full and fair” system of protections that can accommodate asylum seekers who are sent there. Critics insisted that Guatemala meets neither requirement.

      They also noted that the State Department’s own country condition reports on Guatemala warn about rampant gang activity and say that murder is common in the country, which has a police force that is often ineffective at best.

      Asked whether Guatemala is a safe country for refugees, Mr. McAleenan said it was unfair to tar an entire country, noting that there are also places in the United States that are not safe.

      In 2018, the most recent year for which data is available, 116,808 migrants apprehended at the southwest border were from Guatemala, while 77,128 were from Honduras and 31,636 were from El Salvador.

      “It’s legally ludicrous and totally dangerous,” said Eleanor Acer, the senior director for refugee protection at Human Rights First. “The United States is trying to send people back to a country where their lives would be at risk. It sets a terrible example for the rest of the world.”

      Administration officials traveled to Guatemala in recent months, pushing officials there to sign the agreement, according to an administration official. But negotiations broke down in the past two weeks after Guatemala’s Constitutional Court ruled that Mr. Morales needed approval from lawmakers to make the deal with the United States.

      The ruling led Mr. Morales to cancel a planned trip in mid-July to sign the agreement, leaving Mr. Trump fuming.

      “Now we are looking at the BAN, Tariffs, Remittance Fees, or all of the above,” Mr. Trump wrote on Twitter on July 23.

      Friday’s action suggests that the president’s threats, which provoked concern among Guatemala’s business community, were effective.

      https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/26/world/americas/trump-guatemala-asylum.html

    • Este es el acuerdo migratorio firmado entre Guatemala y Estados Unidos

      Prensa Libre obtuvo en primicia el acuerdo que Guatemala firmó con Estados Unidos para detener la migración desde el Triángulo Norte de Centroamérica.

      Estados Unidos y Guatemala firmaron este 26 de julio un “acuerdo de asilo”, después de que esta semana el presidente Donald Trump amenazara a Guatemala con imponer aranceles para presionar por la negociación del convenio.

      Según Trump, el acuerdo “va a dar seguridad a los demandantes de asilo legítimos y a va detener los fraudes y abusos en el sistema de asilo”.

      El acuerdo fue firmado en el Despacho Oval de la Casa Blanca entre Kevin McAleenan, secretario interino de Seguridad Nacional de los Estados Unidos, y Enrique Degenhart, ministro de Gobernación de Guatemala.

      “Hace mucho tiempo que hemos estado trabajando con Guatemala y ahora podemos hacerlo de la manera correcta”, dijo el mandatario estadounidense.

      Este es el contenido íntegro del acuerdo:

      ACUERDO ENTRE EL GOBIERNO DE LOS ESTADOS UNIDOS DE AMÉRICA Y EL GOBIERNO DE LA REPÚBLICA DE GUATEMALA RELATIVO A LA COOPERACIÓN RESPECTO AL EXAMEN DE SOLICITUDES DE PROTECCIÓN

      EL GOBIERNO DE LOS ESTADOS UNIDOS DE AMÉRICA Y EL GOBIERNO DE LA REPÚBLICA DE GUATEMALA, en lo sucesivo de forma individual una “Parte” o colectivamente “las Partes”,

      CONSIDERANDO que Guatemala norma sus relaciones con otros países de conformidad con principios, reglas y prácticas internacionales con el propósito de contribuir al mantenimiento de la paz y la libertad, al respeto y defensa de los derechos humanos, y al fortalecimiento de los procesos democráticos e instituciones internacionales que garanticen el beneficio mutuo y equitativo entre los Estados; considerando por otro lado, que Guatemala mantendrá relaciones de amistad, solidaridad y cooperación con aquellos Estados cuyo desarrollo económico, social y cultural sea análogo al de Guatemala, como el derecho de las personas a migrar y su necesidad de protección;

      CONSIDERANDO que en la actualidad Guatemala incorpora en su legislación interna leyes migratorias dinámicas que obligan a Guatemala a reconocer el derecho de toda persona a emigrar o inmigrar, por lo que cualquier migrante puede entrar, permanecer, transitar, salir y retornar a su territorio nacional conforme a su legislación nacional; considerando, asimismo, que en situaciones no previstas por la legislación interna se debe aplicar la norma que más favorezca al migrante, siendo que por analogía se le debería dar abrigo y cuidado temporal a las personas que deseen ingresar de manera legal al territorio nacional; considerando que por estos motivos es necesario promover acuerdos de cooperación con otros Estados que respeten los mismos principios descritos en la política migratoria de Guatemala, reglamentada por la Autoridad Migratoria Nacional;

      CONSIDERANDO que Guatemala es parte de la Convención sobre el Estatuto de los Refugiados de 1951, celebrada en Ginebra el 28 de julio de 1951 (la “Convención de 1951″) y del Protocolo sobre el Estatuto de los Refugiados, firmado en Nueva York el 31 de enero de 1967 (el “Protocolo de 1967′), del cual los Estados Unidos son parte, y reafirmando la obligación de las partes de proporcionar protección a refugiados que cumplen con los requisitos y que se encuentran físicamente en sus respectivos territorios, de conformidad con sus obligaciones según esos instrumentos y sujetos . a las respectivas leyes, tratados y declaraciones de las Partes;

      RECONOCIENDO especialmente la obligación de las Partes respecto a cumplir el principio de non-refoulement de no devolución, tal como se desprende de la Convención de 1951 y del Protocolo de 1967, así como la Convención contra la Tortura y Otros Tratos o Penas Crueles, Inhumanos o Degradantes, firmada en Nueva York el 10 de diciembre de 1984 (la “Convención contra la Tortura”), con sujeción a las respectivas reservas, entendimientos y declaraciones de las Partes y reafirmando sus respectivas obligaciones de fomentar y proteger los derechos humanos y las libertades fundamentales en consonancia con sus obligaciones en el ámbito internacional;

      RECONOCIENDO y respetando las obligaciones de cada Parte de conformidad con sus leyes y políticas nacionales y acuerdos y arreglos internacionales;

      DESTACANDO que los Estados Unidos de América y Guatemala ofrecen sistemas de protección de refugiados que son coherentes con sus obligaciones conforme a la Convención de 1951 y/o el Protocolo de 1967;

      DECIDIDOS a mantener el estatuto de refugio o de protección temporal equivalente, como medida esencial en la protección de los refugiados o asilados, y al mismo tiempo deseando impedir el fraude en el proceso de solicitud de refugio o asilo, acción que socava su legitimo propósito; y decididos a fortalecer la integridad del proceso oficial para solicitar el estatuto de refugio o asilo, así como el respaldo público a dicho proceso;

      CONSCIENTES de que la distribución de la responsabilidad relacionada con solicitudes de protección debe garantizar en la práctica que se identifique a las personas que necesitan protección y que se eviten las violaciones del principio básico de no devolución; y, por lo tanto, comprometidos con salvaguardar para cada solicitante del estatuto de refugio o asilo que reúna las condiciones necesarias el acceso a un procedimiento completo e imparcial para determinar la solicitud;

      ACUERDAN lo siguiente:

      ARTÍCULO 1

      A efectos del presente Acuerdo:

      1. “Solicitud de protección” significa la solicitud de una persona de cualquier nacionalidad, al gobierno de una de las Partes para recibir protección conforme a sus respectivas obligaciones institucionales derivadas de la Convención de 1951, del Protocolo de 1967 o de la Convención contra la Tortura, y de conformidad con las leyes y políticas respectivas de las Partes que dan cumplimiento a esas obligaciones internacionales, así como para recibir cualquier otro tipo de protección temporal equivalente disponible conforme al derecho migratorio de la parte receptora.

      2. “Solicitante de protección” significa cualquier persona que presenta una solicitud de protección en el territorio de una de las partes.

      3. “Sistema para determinar la protección” significa el conjunto de políticas, leyes, prácticas administrativas y judiciales que el gobierno de cada parte emplea para decidir respecto de las solicitudes de protección.

      4. “Menor no acompañado” significa un solicitante de protección que no ha cumplido los dieciocho (18) años de edad y cuyo padre, madre o tutor legal no está presente ni disponible para proporcionar atención y custodia presencial en los Estados Unidos de América o en Guatemala, donde se encuentre el menor no acompañado.

      5. En el caso de la inmigración a Guatemala, las políticas respecto de leyes y migración abordan el derecho de las personas a entrar, permanecer, transitar y salir de su territorio de conformidad con sus leyes internas y los acuerdos y arreglos internacionales, y permanencia migratoria significa permanencia por un plazo de tiempo autorizado de acuerdo al estatuto migratorio otorgado a las personas.

      ARTÍCULO 2

      El presente Acuerdo no aplica a los solicitantes de protección que son ciudadanos o nacionales de Guatemala; o quienes, siendo apátridas, residen habitualmente en Guatemala.

      ARTÍCULO 3

      1. Para garantizar que los solicitantes de protección trasladados a Guatemala por los Estados Unidos tengan acceso a un sistema para determinar la protección, Guatemala no retornará ni expulsará a solicitantes de protección en Guatemala, a menos que el solicitante abandone la ‘solicitud o que esta sea denegada a través de una decisión administrativa.

      2. Durante el proceso de traslado, las personas sujetas al presente Acuerdo serán responsabilidad de los Estados Unidos hasta que finalice el proceso de traslado.

      ARTÍCULO 4

      1. La responsabilidad de determinar y concluir en su territorio solicitudes de protección recaerá en los Estados Unidos, cuando los Estados Unidos establezcan que esa persona:

      a. es un menor no acompañado; o

      b. llegó al territorio de los Estados Unidos:

      i. con una visa emitida de forma válida u otro documento de admisión válido, que no sea de tránsito, emitido por los Estados Unidos; o

      ii. sin que los Estados Unidos de América le exigiera obtener una visa.

      2. No obstante el párrafo 1 de este artículo, Guatemala evaluará las solicitudes de protección una por una, de acuerdo a lo establecido y autorizado por la autoridad competente en materia migratoria en sus políticas y leyes migratorias y en su territorio, de las personas que cumplen los requisitos necesarios conforme al presente Acuerdo, y que llegan a los Estados Unidos a un puerto de entrada o entre puertos de entrada, en la fecha efectiva del presente Acuerdo o posterior a ella. Guatemala evaluará la solicitud de protección, conforme al plan de implementación inicial y los procedimientos operativos estándar a los que se hace referencia en el artículo 7, apartados 1 y 5.

      3. Las Partes aplicarán el presente Acuerdo respecto a menores no acompañados de conformidad con sus respectivas leyes nacionales,

      4. Las Partes contarán con procedimientos para garantizar que los traslados de los Estados Unidos a Guatemala de las personas objeto del presente Acuerdo sean compatibles con sus obligaciones, leyes nacionales e internacionales y políticas migratorias respectivas.

      5. Los Estados Unidos tomarán la decisión final de que una persona satisface los requisitos para una excepción en virtud de los artículos 4 y 5 del presente Acuerdo.

      ARTÍCULO 5

      No obstante cualquier disposición del presente Acuerdo, cualquier parte podrá, según su propio criterio, examinar cualquier solicitud de protección que se haya presentado a esa Parte cuando decida que es de su interés público hacerlo.

      ARTÍCULO 6

      Las Partes podrán:

      1. Intercambiar información cuando sea necesario para la implementación efectiva del presente Acuerdo con sujeción a las leyes y reglamentación nacionales. Dicha información no será divulgada por el país receptor excepto de conformidad con sus leyes y reglamentación nacionales.

      2. Las Partes podrán intercambiar de forma habitual información respecto á leyes, reglamentación y prácticas relacionadas con sus respectivos sistemas para determinar la protección migratoria.

      ARTÍCULO 7

      1. Las Partes elaborarán procedimientos operativos estándar para asistir en la implementación del presente Acuerdo. Estos procedimientos incorporarán disposiciones para notificar por adelantado, a Guatemala, el traslado de cualquier persona conforme al presente Acuerdo. Los Estados Unidos colaborarán con Guatemala para identificar a las personas idóneas para ser trasladadas al territorio de Guatemala.

      2. Los procedimientos operativos incorporarán mecanismos para solucionar controversias que respeten la interpretación e implementación de los términos del presente Acuerdo. Los casos no previstos que no puedan solucionarse a través de estos mecanismos serán resueltos a través de la vía diplomática.

      3. Los Estados Unidos prevén cooperar para fortalecer las capacidades institucionales de Guatemala.

      4. Las Partes acuerdan evaluar regularmente el presente Acuerdo y su implementación, para subsanar las deficiencias encontradas. Las Partes realizarán las evaluaciones conjuntamente, siendo la primera dentro de un plazo máximo de tres (3) meses a partir de la fecha de entrada en operación del Acuerdo y las siguientes evaluaciones dentro de los mismos plazos. Las Partes podrán invitar, de común acuerdo, a otras organizaciones pertinentes con conocimientos especializados sobre el tema a participar en la evaluación inicial y/o cooperar para el cumplimiento del presente Acuerdo.

      5. Las Partes prevén completar un plan de implementación inicial, que incorporará gradualmente, y abordará, entre otros: a) los procedimientos necesarios para llevar a cabo el traslado de personas conforme al presente Acuerdo; b) la cantidad o número de personas a ser trasladadas; y c) las necesidades de capacidad institucional. Las Partes planean hacer operativo el presente Acuerdo al finalizarse un plan de implementación gradual.

      ARTÍCULO 8

      1. El presente Acuerdo entrará en vigor por medio de un canje de notas entre las partes en el que se indique que cada parte ha cumplido con los procedimientos jurídicos nacionales necesarios para que el Acuerdo entre en vigor. El presente Acuerdo tendrá una vigencia de dos (2) años y podrá renovarse antes de su vencimiento a través de un canje de notas.

      2. Cualquier Parte podrá dar por terminado el presente Acuerdo por medio de una notificación por escrito a la otra Parte con tres (3) meses de antelación.

      3. Cualquier parte podrá, inmediatamente después de notificar a la otra parte por escrito, suspender por un periodo inicial de hasta tres (3) meses la implementación del presente Acuerdo. Esta suspensión podrá extenderse por periodos adicionales de hasta tres (3) meses por medio de una notificación por escrito a la otra parte. Cualquier parte podrá, con el consentimiento por escrito de la otra, suspender cualquier parte del presente Acuerdo.

      4. Las Partes podrán, por escrito y de mutuo acuerdo, realizar cualquier modificación o adición al presente Acuerdo. Estas entrarán en vigor de conformidad con los procedimientos jurídicos pertinentes de cada Parte y la modificación o adición constituirá parte integral del presente Acuerdo.

      5. Ninguna disposición del presente Acuerdo deberá interpretarse de manera que obligue a las Partes a erogar o comprometer fondos.

      EN FE DE LO CUAL, los abajo firmantes, debidamente autorizados por sus respectivos gobiernos, firman el presente Acuerdo.

      HECHO el 26 de julio de 2019, por duplicado en los idiomas inglés y español, siendo ambos textos auténticos.

      POR EL GOBIERNO DE LOS ESTADOS UNIDOS DE AMÉRICA: Kevin K. McAleenan, Secretario Interino de Seguridad Nacional.

      POR EL GOBIERNO DE LA REPÚBLICA DE GUATEMALA: Enrique A. Degenhart Asturias, Ministro de Gobernación.

      https://www.prensalibre.com/guatemala/migrantes/este-es-el-acuerdo-migratorio-firmado-entre-guatemala-y-estados-unidos

    • Washington signe un accord sur le droit d’asile avec le Guatemala

      Sous la pression du président américain, le Guatemala devient un « pays tiers sûr », où les migrants de passage vers les Etats-Unis doivent déposer leurs demandes d’asile.

      Sous la pression de Donald Trump qui menaçait de lui infliger des sanctions commerciales, le Guatemala a accepté vendredi 26 juillet de devenir un « pays tiers sûr » pour contribuer à réduire le nombre de demandes d’asile aux Etats-Unis. L’accord, qui a été signé en grande pompe dans le bureau ovale de la Maison blanche, en préfigure d’autres, a assuré le président américain, qui a notamment cité le Mexique.

      Faute d’avoir obtenu du Congrès le financement du mur qu’il souhaitait construire le long de la frontière avec le Mexique, Donald Trump a changé de stratégie en faisant pression sur les pays d’Amérique centrale pour qu’ils l’aident à réduire le flux de migrants arrivant aux Etats-Unis, qui a atteint un niveau record sous sa présidence.

      Une personne qui traverse un « pays tiers sûr » doit déposer sa demande d’asile dans ce pays et non dans son pays de destination. Sans employer le terme « pays tiers sûr », le gouvernement guatémaltèque a précisé dans un communiqué que l’accord conclu avec les Etats-Unis s’appliquerait aux réfugiés originaires du Honduras et du Salvador.

      Contreparties pour les travailleurs agricoles

      S’adressant à la presse devant la Maison blanche, le président américain a indiqué que les ouvriers agricoles guatémaltèques auraient en contrepartie un accès privilégié aux fermes aux Etats-Unis.

      Le président guatémaltèque Jimmy Morales devait signer l’accord de « pays tiers sûr » la semaine dernière mais il avait été contraint de reculer après que la Cour constitutionnelle avait jugé qu’il ne pouvait pas prendre un tel engagement sans l’accord du Parlement, ce qui avait provoqué la fureur de Donald Trump.

      Invoquant la nécessité d’éviter des « répercussions sociales et économiques », le gouvernement guatémaltèque a indiqué qu’un accord serait signé dans les prochains jours avec Washington pour faciliter l’octroi de visas de travail agricole temporaires aux ressortissants guatémaltèques. Il a dit espérer que cette mesure serait ultérieurement étendue aux secteurs de la construction et des services.

      Les Etats-Unis sont confrontés à une flambée du nombre de migrants qui cherchent à franchir sa frontière sud, celle qui les séparent du Mexique. En juin, les services de police aux frontières ont arrêté 104 000 personnes qui cherchaient à entrer illégalement aux Etats-Unis. Ils avaient été 144 000 le mois précédent.

      https://www.lemonde.fr/international/article/2019/07/27/washington-signe-un-accord-sur-le-droit-d-asile-avec-le-guatemala_5493979_32
      #agriculture #ouvriers_agricoles #travail #fermes

    • Migrants, pressions sur le Mexique

      Sous la pression des États-Unis, le Mexique fait la chasse aux migrants sur son territoire, et les empêche d’avancer vers le nord. Au mois de juin, les autorités ont arrêté près de 24 000 personnes sans papiers.

      Debout sur son radeau, Edwin maugrée en regardant du coin de l’œil la vingtaine de militaires de la Garde Nationale mexicaine postés sous les arbres, côté mexicain. « C’est à cause d’eux si les affaires vont mal », bougonne le jeune Guatémaltèque en poussant son radeau à l’aide d’une perche. « Depuis qu’ils sont là, plus personne ne peut passer au Mexique ».

      Les eaux du fleuve Suchiate, qui sépare le Mexique du Guatemala, sont étrangement calmes depuis le mois de juin. Fini le ballet incessant des petits radeaux de fortune, où s’entassaient, pêle-mêle, villageois, commerçants et migrants qui se rendaient au Mexique. « Mais ça ne change rien, les migrants traversent plus loin », sourit le jeune homme.

      La stratégie du président américain Donald Trump pour contraindre son voisin du sud à réduire les flux migratoires en direction des États-Unis a mis le gouvernement mexicain aux abois : pour éviter une nouvelle fois la menace de l’instauration de frais de douanes de 5 % sur les importations mexicaines, le gouvernement d’Andrés Manuel López Obrador a déployé dans l’urgence 6 500 éléments de la Garde Nationale à la frontière sud du Mexique.
      Des pots-de-vin lors des contrôles

      Sur les routes, les opérations de contrôle sont partout. « Nous avons été arrêtés à deux reprises par l’armée », explique Natalia, entourée de ses garçons de 11 ans, 8 ans et 3 ans. Cette Guatémaltèque s’est enfuie de son village avec son mari et ses enfants, il y a dix jours. Son époux, témoin protégé dans le procès d’un groupe criminel, a été menacé de mort. « Au premier contrôle, nous leur avons donné 1 500 pesos (NDLR, 70 €), au deuxième 2 500 pesos (118 €), pour qu’ils nous laissent partir », explique la mère de famille, assise sous le préau de l’auberge du Père César Augusto Cañaveral, l’une des deux auberges qui accueillent les migrants à Tapachula.

      Conçu pour 120 personnes, l’établissement héberge actuellement plus de 300 personnes, dont une centaine d’enfants en bas âge. « On est face à une politique anti-migratoire de plus en plus violente et militarisée, se désole le Père Cañaveral. C’est devenu une véritable chasse à l’homme dehors, alors je leur dis de sortir le moins possible pour éviter les arrestations ». Celles-ci ont en effet explosé depuis l’ultimatum du président des États-Unis : du 1er au 24 juin, l’Institut National de Migration (INM) a arrêté près de 24 000 personnes en situation irrégulière, soit 1 000 personnes détenues par jour en moyenne, et en a expulsé plus de 17 000, essentiellement des Centraméricains. Du jamais vu.
      Des conditions de détention « indignes »

      À Tapachula, les migrants arrêtés sont entassés dans le centre de rétention Siglo XXI. À quelques mètres de l’entrée de cette forteresse de béton, Yannick a le regard vide et fatigué. « Il y avait tellement de monde là-dedans que ma fille y est tombée malade », raconte cet Angolais âgé de 33 ans, sa fille de 3 ans somnolant dans ses bras. « Ils viennent de nous relâcher car ils ne vont pas nous renvoyer en Afrique, ajoute-il. Heureusement, car à l’intérieur on dort par terre ». « Les conditions dans ce centre sont indignes », dénonce Claudia León Aug, coordinatrice du Service jésuite des réfugiés pour l’Amérique latine, qui a visité à plusieurs reprises le centre de rétention Siglo XXI. « La nourriture est souvent avariée, les enfants tombent malades, les bébés n’ont droit qu’à une seule couche par jour, et on a même recensé des cas de tortures et d’agressions ».

      Tapachula est devenu un cul-de-sac pour des milliers de migrants. Ils errent dans les rues de la ville, d’hôtel en d’hôtel, ou louent chez l’habitant, faute de pouvoir avancer vers le nord. Les compagnies de bus, sommées de participer à l’effort national, demandent systématiquement une pièce d’identité en règle. « On ne m’a pas laissé monter dans le bus en direction de Tijuana », se désole Elvis, un Camerounais de 34 ans qui rêve de se rendre au Canada.

      Il sort de sa poche un papier tamponné par les autorités mexicaines, le fameux laissez-passer que délivrait l’Institut National de Migration aux migrants extra-continentaux, pour qu’ils traversent le Mexique en 20 jours afin de gagner la frontière avec les États-Unis. « Regardez, ils ont modifié le texte, maintenant il est écrit que je ne peux pas sortir de Tapachula », accuse le jeune homme, dépité, avant de se rasseoir sur le banc de la petite cour de son hôtel décati dans la périphérie de Tapachula. « La situation est chaotique, les gens sont bloqués ici et les autorités ne leur donnent aucune information, pour les décourager encore un peu plus », dénonce Salvador Lacruz, coordinateur au Centre des Droits humains Centro Fray Matías de Córdova.
      Explosion du nombre des demandes d’asile au Mexique

      Face à la menace des arrestations et des expulsions, de plus en plus de migrants choisissent de demander l’asile au Mexique. Dans le centre-ville de Tapachula, la Commission mexicaine d’aide aux réfugiés (COMAR), est prise d’assaut dès 4 heures du matin par les demandeurs d’asile. « On m’a dit de venir avec tous les documents qui prouvent que je suis en danger de mort dans mon pays », explique Javier, un Hondurien de 34 ans qui a fait la queue une partie de la nuit pour ne pas rater son rendez-vous.

      Son fils de 9 ans est assis sur ses genoux. « J’ai le certificat de décès de mon père et celui de mon frère. Ils ont été assassinés pour avoir refusé de donner de l’argent aux maras », explique-t-il, une pochette en plastique dans les mains. « Le prochain sur la liste, c’est moi, c’est pour ça que je suis parti pour les États-Unis, mais je vois que c’est devenu très difficile, alors je me pose ici, ensuite, on verra ».

      Les demandes d’asile au Mexique ont littéralement explosé : 31 000 pour les six premiers mois de 2019, c’est trois fois plus qu’en 2018 à la même période, et juin a été particulièrement élevé, avec 70 % de demandes en plus par rapport à janvier. La tendance devrait se poursuivre du fait de la décision prise le 15 juillet dernier par le président américain, que toute personne « entrant par la frontière sud des États-Unis » et souhaitant demander l’asile aux États-Unis le fasse, au préalable, dans un autre pays, transformant ainsi le Mexique, de facto, en « pays tiers sûr ».

      « Si les migrants savent que la seule possibilité de demander l’asile aux États-Unis, c’est de l’avoir obtenu au Mexique, ils le feront », observe Salvador Lacruz. Mais si certains s’accrochent à Tapachula, d’autres abandonnent. Jesús Roque, un Hondurien de 21 ans, « vient de signer » comme disent les migrants centraméricains en référence au programme de retour volontaire mis en place par le gouvernement mexicain. « C’est impossible d’aller plus au nord, je rentre chez moi », lâche-t-il.

      Comme lui, plus de 35 000 personnes sont rentrées dans leur pays, essentiellement des Honduriens et des Salvadoriens. À quelques mètres, deux femmes pressent le pas, agacées par la foule qui se presse devant les bureaux de la COMAR. « Qu’ils partent d’ici, vite ! », grogne l’une. Le mur tant désiré par Donald Trump s’est finalement érigé au Mexique en quelques semaines. Dans les esprits aussi.

      https://www.la-croix.com/Monde/Ameriques/Le-Mexique-verrouille-frontiere-sud-2019-08-01-1201038809

    • US Move Puts More Asylum Seekers at Risk. Expanded ‘#Remain_in_Mexico’ Program Undermines Due Process

      The Trump administration has drastically expanded its “Remain in Mexico” program while undercutting the rights of asylum seekers at the United States southern border, Human Rights Watch said today. Under the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) – known as the “Remain in Mexico” program – asylum seekers in the US are returned to cities in Mexico where there is a shortage of shelter and high crime rates while awaiting asylum hearings in US immigration court.

      Human Rights Watch found that asylum seekers face new or increased barriers to obtaining and communicating with legal counsel; increased closure of MPP court hearings to the public; and threats of kidnapping, extortion, and other violence while in Mexico.

      “The inherently inhumane ‘Remain in Mexico’ program is getting more abusive by the day,” said Ariana Sawyer, assistant US Program researcher at Human Rights Watch. “The program’s rapid growth in recent months has put even more people and families in danger in Mexico while they await an increasingly unfair legal process in the US.”

      The United States will begin sending all Central American asylum-seeking families to Mexico beginning the week of September 29, 2019 as part of the most recent expansion of the “Remain in Mexico” program, the Department of Homeland Security acting secretary, Kevin McAleenan, announced on September 23.

      Human Rights Watch concluded in a July 2019 report that the MPP program has had serious rights consequences for asylum seekers, including high – if not insurmountable – barriers to due process on their asylum claims in the United States and threats and physical violence in Mexico. Human Rights Watch recently spoke to seven asylum seekers, as well as 26 attorneys, migrant shelter operators, Mexican government officials, immigration court workers, journalists, and advocates. Human Rights Watch also observed court hearings for 71 asylum seekers in August and analyzed court filings, declarations, photographs, and media reports.

      “The [MPP] rules, which are never published, are constantly changing without advance notice,” said John Moore, an asylum attorney. “And so far, every change has had the effect of further restricting the already limited access we attorneys have with our clients.”

      Beyond the expanded program, which began in January, the US State Department has also begun funding a “voluntary return” program carried out by the United Nations-affiliated International Organization for Migration (IOM). The organization facilitates the transportation of asylum seekers forced to wait in Mexico back to their country of origin but does not notify US immigration judges. This most likely results in negative judgments against asylum seekers for not appearing in court, possibly resulting in a ban of up to 10 years on entering the US again, when they could have withdrawn their cases without penalty.

      Since July, the number of people being placed in the MPP program has almost tripled, from 15,079 as of June 24, to 40,033 as of September 7, according to the Mexican National Institute of Migration. The Trump administration has increased the number of asylum seekers it places in the program at ports of entry near San Diego and Calexico, California and El Paso, Texas, where the program had already been in place. The administration has also expanded the program to Laredo and Brownsville, Texas, even as the overall number of border apprehensions has declined.

      As of early August, more than 26,000 additional asylum seekers were waiting in Mexican border cities on unofficial lists to be processed by US Customs and Border Protection as part the US practice of “metering,” or of limiting the number of people who can apply for asylum each day by turning them back from ports of entry in violation of international law.

      In total, more than 66,000 asylum seekers are now in Mexico, forced to wait months or years for their cases to be decided in the US. Some have given up waiting and have attempted to cross illicitly in more remote and dangerous parts of the border, at times with deadly results.

      As problematic as the MPP program is, seeking asylum will likely soon become even more limited. On September 11, the Supreme Court temporarily allowed the Trump administration to carry out an asylum ban against anyone entering the country by land after July 16 who transited through a third country without applying for asylum there. This could affect at least 46,000 asylum seekers, placed in the MPP program or on a metering list after mid-July, according to calculations based on data from the Mexican National Institute of Migration. Asylum seekers may still be eligible for other forms of protection, but they carry much higher eligibility standards and do not provide the same level of relief.

      Human Rights Watch contacted the Department of Homeland Security and the US Justice Department’s Executive Office for Immigration Review with its findings and questions regarding the policy changes and developments but have not to date received a response. The US government should immediately cease returning asylum seekers to Mexico and instead ensure them meaningful access to full and fair asylum proceedings in US immigration courts, Human Rights Watch said. Congress should urgently act to cease funding the MPP program. The US should manage asylum-seeker arrivals through a genuine humanitarian response that includes fair determinations of an asylum seeker’s eligibility to remain in the US. The US should simultaneously pursue longer-term efforts to address the root causes of forced displacement in Central America.

      “The Trump administration seems intent on making the bad situation for asylum seekers even worse by further depriving them of due process rights,” Sawyer said. “The US Congress should step in and put an end to these mean-spirited attempts to undermine and destroy the US asylum system.”

      New Concerns over the MPP Program

      Increased Barriers to Legal Representation

      Everyone in the MPP has the right to an attorney at their own cost, but it has been nearly impossible for asylum seekers forced to remain in Mexico to get legal representation. Only about 1.3 percent of participants have legal representation, according to the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse University, a research center that examined US immigration court records through June 2019. In recent months, the US government has raised new barriers to obtaining representation and accessing counsel.

      When the Department of Homeland Security created the program, it issued guidance that:

      in order to facilitate access to counsel for aliens subject to return to Mexico under the MPP who will be transported to their immigration court hearings, [agents] will depart from the [port of entry] with the alien at a time sufficient to ensure arrival at the immigration court not later than one hour before his or her scheduled hearing time in order to afford the alien the opportunity to meet in-person with his or her legal representative.

      However, according to several attorneys Human Rights Watch interviewed in El Paso, Texas, and as Human Rights Watch observed on August 12 to 15 in El Paso Immigration Court, the Department of Homeland Security and the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR), which manages the immigration court, have effectively barred attorneys from meeting with clients for the full hour before their client’s hearing begins. Rather than having free access to their clients, attorneys are now required to wait in the building lobby on a different level than the immigration court until the court administrator notifies security guards that attorneys may enter.

      As Human Rights Watch has previously noted, one hour is insufficient for adequate attorney consultation and preparation. Still, several attorneys said that this time in court was crucial. Immigration court is often the only place where asylum seekers forced to wait in Mexico can meet with attorneys since lawyers capable of representing them typically work in the US. Attorneys cannot easily travel to Mexico because of security and logistical issues. For MPP participants without attorneys, there are now also new barriers to getting basic information and assistance about the asylum application process.

      Human Rights Watch observed in May a coordinated effort by local nongovernmental organizations and attorneys in El Paso to perform know-your-rights presentations for asylum seekers without an attorney and to serve as “Friend of the Court,” at the judge’s discretion. The Executive Office for Immigration Review has recognized in the context of unaccompanied minors that a Friend of the Court “has a useful role to play in assisting the court and enhancing a respondent’s comprehension of proceedings.”

      The agency’s memos also say that, “Immigration Judges and court administrators remain encouraged to facilitate pro bono representation” because pro bono attorneys provide “respondents with welcome legal assistance and the judge with efficiencies that can only be realized when the respondent is represented.”

      To that end, immigration courts are encouraged to support “legal orientations and group rights presentations” by nonprofit organizations and attorneys.

      One of the attorneys involved in coordinating the various outreach programs at the El Paso Immigration Court said, however, that on June 24 the agency began barring all contact between third parties and asylum seekers without legal representation in both the courtroom and the lobby outside. This effectively ended all know-your-rights presentations and pro bono case screenings, though no new memo was issued. Armed guards now prevent attorneys in the US from interacting with MPP participants unless the attorneys have already filed official notices that they are representing specific participants.

      On July 8, the agency also began barring attorneys from serving as “Friend of the Court,” several attorneys told Human Rights Watch. No new memo has been issued on “Friend of the Court” either.

      In a July 16 email to an attorney obtained by Human Rights Watch, an agency spokesman, Rob Barnes, said that the agency shut down “Friend of the Court” and know-your-rights presentations to protect asylum seekers from misinformation after it “became aware that persons from organizations not officially recognized by EOIR...were entering EOIR space in El Paso.

      However, most of the attorneys and organizations now barred from performing know-your-rights presentations or serving as “Friend of the Court” in El Paso are listed on a form given to asylum seekers by the court of legal service providers, according to a copy of the form given to Human Rights Watch and attorneys and organizations coordinating those services.

      Closure of Immigration Court Hearings to the Public

      When Human Rights Watch observed court hearings in El Paso on May 8 to 10, the number of asylum seekers who had been placed in the MPP program and scheduled to appear in court was between 20 and 24 each day, with one judge hearing all of these cases in a single mass hearing. At the time, those numbers were considered high, and there was chaos and confusion as judges navigated a system that was never designed to provide hearings for people being kept outside the US.

      When Human Rights Watch returned to observe hearings just over three months later, four judges were hearing a total of about 250 cases a day, an average of over 60 cases for each judge. Asylum seekers in the program, who would previously have been allowed into the US to pursue their claims at immigration courts dispersed around the country, have been primarily funneled through courts in just two border cities, causing tremendous pressures on these courts and errors in the system. Some asylum seekers who appeared in court found their cases were not in the system or received conflicting instructions about where or when to appear.

      One US immigration official said the MPP program had “broken the courts,” Reuters reported.

      The Executive Office for Immigration Review has stated that immigration court hearings are generally supposed to be open to the public. The regulations indicate that immigration judges may make exceptions and limit or close hearings if physical facilities are inadequate; if there is a need to protect witnesses, parties, or the public interest; if an abused spouse or abused child is to appear; or if information under seal is to be presented.

      In recent weeks, however, journalists, attorneys, and other public observers have been barred from these courtrooms in El Paso by court administrators, security guards, and in at least one case, by a Department of Homeland Security attorney, who said that a courtroom was too full to allow a Human Rights Watch researcher entry.

      Would-be observers are now frequently told by the court administrator or security guards that there is “no room,” and that dockets are all “too full.”

      El Paso Immigration Court Administrator Rodney Buckmire told Human Rights Watch that hundreds of people receive hearings each day because asylum seekers “deserve their day in court,” but the chaos and errors in mass hearings, the lack of access to attorneys and legal advice, and the lack of transparency make clear that the MPP program is severely undermining due process.

      During the week of September 9, the Trump administration began conducting hearings for asylum seekers returned to Mexico in makeshift tent courts in Laredo and Brownsville, where judges are expected to preside via videoconference. At a September 11 news conference, DHS would not commit to allowing observers for those hearings, citing “heightened security measures” since the courts are located near the border. Both attorneys and journalists have since been denied entry to these port courts.

      Asylum Seekers Describe Risk of Kidnapping, Other Crimes

      As the MPP has expanded, increasing numbers of asylum seekers have been placed at risk of kidnapping and other crimes in Mexico.

      Two of the northern Mexican states to which asylum seekers were initially being returned under the program, Baja California and Chihuahua, are among those with the most homicides and other crimes in the country. Recent media reports have documented ongoing harm to asylum seekers there, including rape, kidnapping, sexual exploitation, assault, and other violent crimes.

      The program has also been expanded to Nuevo Laredo and Matamoros, both in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas, which is on the US State Department’s “do not travel” list. The media and aid workers have also reported that migrants there have experienced physical violence, sexual assault, kidnapping, and other abuses. There have been multiple reports in 2019 alone of migrants being kidnapped as they attempt to reach the border by bus.

      Jennifer Harbury, a human rights attorney and activist doing volunteer work with asylum-seekers on both sides of the border, collected sworn declarations that they had been victims of abuse from three asylum seekers who had been placed in the MPP program and bused by Mexican immigration authorities to Monterrey, Mexico, two and a half hours from the border. Human Rights Watch examined these declarations, in which asylum seekers reported robbery, extortion, and kidnapping, including by Mexican police.

      Expansion to Mexican Cities with Even Fewer Protections

      Harbury, who recently interviewed hundreds of migrants in Mexico, described asylum seekers sent to Nuevo Laredo as “fish in a barrel” because of their vulnerability to criminal organizations. She said that many of the asylum seekers she interviewed said they had been kidnapped or subjected to an armed assault at least once since they reached the border.

      Because Mexican officials are in many cases reportedly themselves involved in crimes against migrants, and because nearly 98 percent of crimes in Mexico go unsolved, crimes committed against migrants routinely go unpunished.

      In Matamoros, asylum seekers have no meaningful shelter access, said attorneys with Lawyers for Good Government (L4GG) who were last there from August 22 to 26. Instead, more than 500 asylum seekers were placed in an encampment in a plaza near the port of entry to the US, where they were sleeping out in the open, despite temperatures of over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Henriette Vinet-Martin, a lawyer with the group, said she saw a “nursing mother sleeping on cardboard with her baby” and that attorneys also spoke to a woman in the MPP program there who said she had recently miscarried in a US hospital while in Customs and Border Protection custody. The attorneys said some asylum seekers had tents, but many did not.

      Vinet-Martin and Claire Noone, another lawyer there as part of the L4GG project, said they found children with disabilities who had been placed in the MPP program, including two children with Down Syndrome, one of them eight months old.

      Human Rights Watch also found that Customs and Border Protection continues to return asylum seekers with disabilities or other chronic health conditions to Mexico, despite the Department of Homeland Security’s initial guidance that no one with “known physical/mental health issues” would be placed in the program. In Ciudad Juárez, Human Rights Watch documented six such cases, four of them children. In one case, a 14-year-old boy had been placed in the program along with his mother and little brother, who both have intellectual disabilities, although the boy said they have family in the US. He appeared to be confused and distraught by his situation.

      The Mexican government has taken some steps to protect migrants in Ciudad Juárez, including opening a large government-operated shelter. The shelter, which Human Rights Watch visited on August 22, has a capacity of 3,000 migrants and is well-stocked with food, blankets, sleeping pads, personal hygiene kits, and more. At the time of the visit, the shelter held 555 migrants, including 230 children, primarily asylum seekers in the MPP program.

      One Mexican government official said the government will soon open two more shelters – one in Tijuana with a capacity of 3,000 and another in Mexicali with a capacity of 1,500.

      Problems Affecting the ‘Assisted Voluntary Return’ Program

      In October 2018, the International Organization for Migration began operating a $1.65 million US State Department-funded “Assisted Voluntary Return” program to assist migrants who have decided or felt compelled to return home. The return program originally targeted Central Americans traveling in large groups through the interior of Mexico. However, in July, the program began setting up offices in Ciudad Juárez, Tijuana, and Mexicali focusing on asylum seekers forced to wait in those cities after being placed in the MPP program. Alex Rigol Ploettner, who heads the International Organization for Migration office in Ciudad Juárez, said that the organization also provides material support such as bunk beds and personal hygiene kits to shelters, which the organization asks to refer interested asylum seekers to the Assisted Voluntary Return program. Four shelter operators in Ciudad Juárez confirmed these activities.

      As of late August, Rigol Ploettner said approximately 500 asylum seekers in the MPP program had been referred to Assisted Voluntary Return. Of those 500, he said, about 95 percent were found to be eligible for the program.

      He said the organization warns asylum seekers that returning to their home country may cause them to receive deportation orders from the US in absentia, meaning they will most likely face a ban on entering the US of up to 10 years.

      The organization does not inform US immigration courts that they have returned asylum seekers, nor are asylum seekers assisted in withdrawing their petition for asylum, which would avoid future penalties in the US.

      “For now, as the IOM, we don’t have a direct mechanism for withdrawal,” Rigol Ploettner said. Human Rights Watch is deeply concerned about the failure to notify the asylum courts when people who are on US immigration court dockets return home and the negative legal consequences for asylum seekers. These concerns are heightened by the environment in which the Assisted Voluntary Return Program is operating. Asylum seekers in the MPP are in such a vulnerable situation that it cannot be assumed that decisions to return home are based on informed consent.

      https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/09/25/us-move-puts-more-asylum-seekers-risk

      via @pascaline

    • Sweeping Language in Asylum Agreement Foists U.S. Responsibilities onto El Salvador

      Amid a tightening embrace of Trump administration policies, last week El Salvador agreed to begin taking asylum-seekers sent back from the United States. The agreement was announced on Friday but details were not made public at the time. The text of the agreement — which The Intercept requested and obtained from the Department of Homeland Security — purports to uphold international and domestic obligations “to provide protection for eligible refugees,” but immigration experts see the move as the very abandonment of the principle of asylum. Aaron Reichlin-Melnick, policy analyst at American Immigration Council, called the agreement a “deeply cynical” move.

      The agreement, which closely resembles one that the U.S. signed with Guatemala in July, implies that any asylum-seeker who is not from El Salvador could be sent back to that country and forced to seek asylum there. Although officials have said that the agreements would apply to people who passed through El Salvador or Guatemala en route, the text of the agreements does not explicitly make that clear.

      “This agreement is so potentially sweeping that it could be used to send an asylum-seeker who never transited El Salvador to El Salvador,” said Eleanor Acer, senior director of refugee protection at the nonprofit organization Human Rights First.

      DHS did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

      The Guatemalan deal has yet to take effect, as Guatemala’s Congress claims to need to ratify it first. DHS officials are currently seeking a similar arrangement with Honduras and have been pressuring Mexico — under threats of tariffs — to crack down on U.S.-bound migration.

      The agreement with El Salvador comes after the Supreme Court recently upheld the Trump administration’s most recent asylum ban, which requires anyone who has transited through another country before reaching the border to seek asylum there first, and be denied in that country, in order to be eligible for asylum in the U.S. Meanwhile, since January, more than 42,000 asylum-seekers who filed their claims in the U.S. before the ban took effect have been pushed back into Mexico and forced to wait there — where they have been subjected to kidnapping, rape, and extortion, among other hazards — as the courts slowly weigh their eligibility.

      Reichlin-Melnick called the U.S.-El Salvador deal “yet another sustained attack at our system of asylum protections.” It begins by invoking the international Refugee Convention and the principle of non-refoulement, which is the crux of asylum law — the guarantee not to return asylum-seekers to a country where they would be subjected to persecution or death. Karen Musalo, law professor at U.C. Hastings Center for Gender and Refugee Studies, called that invocation “Orwellian.”

      “The idea that El Salvador is a safe country for asylum-seekers when it is one of the major countries sending asylum-seekers to the U.S., a country with one of the highest homicide and femicide rates in the world, a place in which gangs have control over large swathes of the country, and the violence is causing people to flee in record numbers … is another absurdity that is beyond the pale,” Musalo said.

      “El Salvador is not a country that is known for having any kind of protection for its own citizens’ human rights,” Musalo added. “If they can’t protect their own citizens, it’s absolutely absurd to think that they can protect people that are not their citizens.”

      “They’ve looked at all of the facts,” Reichlin-Melnick said. “And they’ve decided to create their own reality.”

      Last week, the Salvadoran newspaper El Faro reported that the country’s agency that reviews asylum claims only has a single officer. Meanwhile, though homicide rates have gone down in recent months — since outsider president Nayib Bukele took office in June — September has already seen an increase in homicides. Bukele’s calculus in accepting the agreement is still opaque to Salvadoran observers (Guatemala’s version was deeply unpopular in that country), but he has courted U.S. investment and support. The legal status of nearly 200,000 Salvadorans with temporary protected status in the U.S. is also under threat from the administration. This month also saw the symbolic launch of El Salvador’s Border Patrol — with U.S. funding and support. This week, Bukele, who has both sidled up to Trump and employed Trumpian tactics, will meet with the U.S. president in New York to discuss immigration.

      Reichlin-Melnick noted that the Guatemalan and Salvadoran agreements, as written, could bar people not only from seeking asylum, but also from two other protections meant to fulfill the non-refoulement principle: withholding of removal (a stay on deportation) and the Convention Against Torture, which prevents people from being returned to situations where they may face torture. That would mean that these Central American cooperation agreements go further than the recent asylum ban, which still allows people to apply for those other protections.

      Another major difference between the asylum ban and these agreements is that with the asylum ban, people would be deported to their home countries. If these agreements go into effect, the U.S. will start sending people to Guatemala or El Salvador, regardless of where they may be from. In the 1980s, the ACLU documented over 100 cases of Salvadorans who were harmed or killed after they were deported from the U.S. After this agreement goes into effect, it will no longer be just Salvadorans who the U.S. will be sending into danger.

      https://theintercept.com/2019/09/23/el-salvador-asylum-agreement

    • La forteresse Trump ou le pari du mur

      Plus que sur le mur promis pendant sa campagne, Donald Trump semble fonder sa #politique_migratoire sur une #pression_commerciale sur ses voisins du sud, remettant en cause les #échanges économiques mais aussi culturels avec le Mexique. Ce mur ne serait-il donc que symbolique ?
      Alors que l’administration américaine le menaçait de #taxes_douanières et de #guerre_commerciale, le Mexique d’Andres Lopez Obrador a finalement concédé de freiner les flux migratoires.

      Après avoir accepté un #accord imposé par Washington, Mexico a considérablement réduit les flux migratoires et accru les #expulsions. En effet, plus de 100 000 ressortissants centre-américains ont été expulsés du Mexique vers le #Guatemala dans les huit premiers mois de l’année, soit une hausse de 63% par rapport à l’année précédente selon les chiffres du Guatemala.

      Par ailleurs, cet été le Guatemala a conclu un accord de droit d’asile avec Washington, faisant de son territoire un « #pays_sûr » auprès duquel les demandeurs d’asiles ont l’obligation d’effectuer les premières démarches. Le Salvador et le #Honduras ont suivi la voie depuis.

      Et c’est ainsi que, alors qu’il rencontrait les plus grandes difficultés à obtenir les financements pour le mur à la frontière mexicaine, Donald Trump mise désormais sur ses voisins pour externaliser sa politique migratoire.

      Alors le locataire de la Maison Blanche a-t-il oublié ses ambitions de poursuivre la construction de cette frontière de fer et de béton ? Ce mur n’était-il qu’un symbole destiné à montrer à son électorat son volontarisme en matière de lutte contre l’immigration ? Le retour de la campagne est-il susceptible d’accélérer les efforts dans le domaine ?

      D’autre part, qu’en est-il de la situation des migrants sur le terrain ? Comment s’adaptent-ils à cette nouvelle donne ? Quelles conséquences sur les parcours migratoires des hommes, des femmes et des enfants qui cherchent à gagner les Etats-Unis ?

      On se souvient de cette terrible photo des cadavres encore enlacés d’un père et de sa petite fille de 2 ans, Oscar et Valeria Alberto, originaires du Salvador, morts noyés dans les eaux tumultueuses du Rio Bravo en juin dernier alors qu’ils cherchaient à passer aux Etats-Unis.

      Ce destin tragique annonce-t-il d’autres drames pour nombre de candidats à l’exil qui, quelques soient les politiques migratoires des Etats, iront au bout de leur vie avec l’espoir de l’embellir un peu ?

      https://www.franceculture.fr/emissions/cultures-monde/les-frontieres-de-la-colere-14-la-forteresse-trump-ou-le-pari-du-mur

      #Mexique #symbole #barrières_frontalières #USA #Etats-Unis #renvois #push-back #refoulements

    • Mexico sends asylum seekers south — with no easy way to return for U.S. court dates

      The exhausted passengers emerge from a sleek convoy of silver and red-streaked buses, looking confused and disoriented as they are deposited ignominiously in this tropical backwater in southernmost Mexico.

      There is no greeter here to provide guidance on their pending immigration cases in the United States or on where to seek shelter in a teeming international frontier town packed with marooned, U.S.-bound migrants from across the globe.

      The bus riders had made a long and perilous overland trek north to the Rio Grande only to be dispatched back south to Mexico’s border with Central America — close to where many of them had begun their perilous journeys weeks and months earlier. At this point, some said, both their resources and sense of hope had been drained.

      “We don’t know what we’re going to do next,” said Maria de Los Angeles Flores Reyes, 39, a Honduran accompanied by her daughter, Cataren, 9, who appeared petrified after disembarking from one of the long-distance buses. “There’s no information, nothing.”

      The two are among more than 50,000 migrants, mostly Central Americans, whom U.S. immigration authorities have sent back to Mexico this year to await court hearings in the United States under the Trump administration’s Remain in Mexico program.

      Immigration advocates have assailed the program as punitive, while the White House says it has worked effectively — discouraging many migrants from following up on asylum cases and helping to curb what President Trump has decried as a “catch and release” system in which apprehended migrants have been freed in U.S. territory pending court proceeding that can drag on for months or years.

      The ever-expanding ranks pose a growing dilemma for Mexican authorities, who, under intense pressure from the White House, had agreed to accept the returnees and provide them with humanitarian assistance.

      As the numbers rise, Mexico, in many cases, has opted for a controversial solution: Ship as many asylum seekers as possible more than 1,000 miles back here in the apparent hope that they will opt to return to Central America — even if that implies endangering or foregoing prospective political asylum claims in U.S. immigration courts.

      Mexican officials, sensitive to criticism that they are facilitating Trump’s hard-line deportation agenda, have been tight-lipped about the shadowy busing program, under which thousands of asylum-seekers have been returned here since August. (Mexican authorities declined to provide statistics on just how many migrants have been sent back under the initiative.)

      In a statement, Mexico’s immigration agency called the 40-hour bus rides a “free, voluntary and secure” alternative for migrants who don’t want to spend months waiting in the country’s notoriously dangerous northern border towns.

      Advocates counter that the program amounts to a barely disguised scheme for encouraging ill-informed migrants to abandon their ongoing petitions in U.S. immigration court and return to Central America. Doing so leaves them to face the same conditions that they say forced them to flee toward the United States, and, at the same time, would undermine the claims that they face persecution at home.

      “Busing someone back to your southern border doesn’t exactly send them a message that you want them to stay in your country,” said Maureen Meyer, who heads the Mexico program for the Washington Office on Latin America, a research and advocacy group. “And it isn’t always clear that the people on the buses understand what this could mean for their cases in the United States.”

      Passengers interviewed on both ends of the bus pipeline — along the northern Mexican border and here on the southern frontier with Guatemala — say that no Mexican official briefed them on the potential legal jeopardy of returning home.

      “No one told us anything,” Flores Reyes asked after she got off the bus here, bewildered about how to proceed. “Is there a safe place to stay here until our appointment in December?”

      The date is specified on a notice to appear that U.S. Border Patrol agents handed her before she and her daughter were sent back to Mexico last month after having been detained as illegal border-crossers in south Texas. They are due Dec. 16 in a U.S. immigration court in Harlingen, Texas, for a deportation hearing, according to the notice, stamped with the capital red letters MPP — for Migrant Protection Protocols, the official designation of Remain in Mexico.

      The free bus rides to the Guatemalan border are strictly a one-way affair: Mexico does not offer return rides back to the northern border for migrants due in a U.S. immigration court, typically several months later.

      Beti Suyapa Ortega, 36, and son Robinson Javier Melara, 17, in a Mexican immigration agency waiting room in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico.

      “At this point, I’m so frightened I just want to go home,” said Beti Suyapa Ortega, 36, from Honduras, who crossed the border into Texas intending to seek political asylum and surrendered to the Border Patrol.

      She, along with her son, 17, were among two dozen or so Remain in Mexico returnees waiting recently for a southbound bus in a spartan office space at the Mexican immigration agency compound in Nuevo Laredo, across the Rio Grande from Laredo, Texas.

      Ortega and others said they were terrified of venturing onto the treacherous streets of Nuevo Laredo — where criminal gangs control not only drug trafficking but also the lucrative enterprise of abducting and extorting from migrants.

      “We can’t get out of here soon enough. It has been a nightmare,” said Ortega, who explained that she and her son had been kidnapped and held for two weeks and only released when a brother in Atlanta paid $8,000 in ransom. “I can never come back to this place.”

      The Ortegas, along with a dozen or so other Remain in Mexico returnees, left later that evening on a bus to southern Mexico. She said she would skip her date in U.S. immigration court, in Laredo — an appointment that would require her to pass through Nuevo Laredo and expose herself anew to its highly organized kidnapping and extortion gangs.

      The Mexican government bus service operates solely from the northern border towns of Nuevo Laredo and Matamoros, officials say. Both are situated in hyper-dangerous Tamaulipas state, a cartel hub on the Gulf of Mexico that regularly ranks high nationwide in homicides, “disappearances” and the discovery of clandestine graves.

      The long-haul Mexican busing initiative began in July, after U.S. immigration authorities began shipping migrants with court cases to Tamaulipas. Earlier, Remain in Mexico had been limited to sending migrants with U.S. court dates back to the northern border towns of Tijuana, Mexicali and Ciudad Juarez.

      At first, the buses left migrants departing from Tamaulipas state in the city of Monterrey, a relatively safe industrial center four hours south of the U.S. border. But officials there, including the state governor, complained about the sudden influx of hundreds of mostly destitute Central Americans. That’s when Mexican authorities appear to have begun busing all the way back to Ciudad Hidalgo, along Mexico’s border with Guatemala.

      A separate, United Nations-linked program has also returned thousands of migrants south from two large cities on the U.S. border, Tijuana and Ciudad Juarez.

      The packed buses arrive here two or three times a week, with no apparent set schedule.

      On a recent morning, half a dozen, each ferrying more than 40 migrants, came to a stop a block from the Rodolfo Robles international bridge that spans the Suchiate River, the dividing line between Mexico and Guatemala. Part of the fleet of the Omnibus Cristobal Colon long-distance transport company, the buses displayed windshield signs explaining they were “in the service” of Mexico’s national immigration agency.

      The migrants on board had begun the return journey south in Matamoros, across from Brownsville, Texas, after having been sent back there by U.S. immigration authorities.

      Many clutched folders with notices to appear in U.S. immigration court in Texas in December.

      But some, including Flores Reyes, said they were terrified of returning to Matamoros, where they had been subjected to robbery or kidnapping. Nor did they want to return across the Rio Grande to Texas, if it required travel back through Matamoros.

      Flores Reyes said kidnappers held her and her daughter for a week in Matamoros before they managed to escape with the aid of a fellow Honduran.

      The pair later crossed into Texas, she said, and they surrendered to the U.S. Border Patrol. On Sept. 11, they were sent back to Matamoros with a notice to appear Dec. 16 in immigration court in Harlingen.

      “When they told us they were sending us back to Matamoros I became very upset,” Flores Reyes said. “I can’t sleep. I’m still so scared because of what happened to us there.”

      Fearing a second kidnapping, she said, she quickly agreed to take the transport back to southern Mexico.

      Christian Gonzalez, 23, a native of El Salvador who was also among those recently returned here, said he had been mugged in Matamoros and robbed of his cash, his ID and his documents, among them the government notice to appear in U.S. immigration court in Texas in December.

      “Without the paperwork, what can I do?” said an exasperated Gonzalez, a laborer back in Usulutan province in southeastern El Salvador. “I don’t have any money to stay here.”

      He planned to abandon his U.S. immigration case and return to El Salvador, where he said he faced threats from gangs and an uncertain future.

      Standing nearby was Nuvia Carolina Meza Romero, 37, accompanied by her daughter, Jessi, 8, who clutched a stuffed sheep. Both had also returned on the buses from Matamoros. Meza Romero, too, was in a quandary about what do, but seemed resigned to return to Honduras.

      “I can’t stay here. I don’t know anyone and I don’t have any money,” said Meza Romero, who explained that she spent a week in U.S. custody in Texas after crossing the Rio Grande and being apprehended on Sept. 2.

      Her U.S. notice to appear advised her to show up on Dec. 3 in U.S. immigration court in Brownsville.

      “I don’t know how I would even get back there at this point,” said Meza Romero, who was near tears as she stood with her daughter near the border bridge.

      Approaching the migrants were aggressive bicycle taxi drivers who, for a fee of the equivalent of about $2, offered to smuggle them back across the river to Guatemala on rafts made of planks and inner tubes, thus avoiding Mexican and Guatemalan border inspections.

      Opting to cross the river were many bus returnees from Matamoros, including Meza Romero, her daughter and Gonzalez, the Salvadoran.

      But Flores Reyes was hesitant to return to Central America and forfeit her long-sought dream of resettling in the United States, even if she had to make her way back to Matamoros on her own.

      “Right now, we just need to find some shelter,” Flores Reyes said as she ambled off in search of some kind of lodging, her daughter holding her mother’s arm. “We have an appointment on Dec. 16 on the other side. I plan to make it. I’m not ready to give up yet.”

      https://www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2019-10-15/buses-to-nowhere-mexico-transports-migrants-with-u-s-court-dates-to-its-far

      –---------

      Commentaire de @pascaline via la mailing-list Migreurop :

      Outre le dispositif d’expulsion par charter de l’OIM (https://seenthis.net/messages/730601) mis en place à la frontière nord du Mexique pour les MPPs, le transfert et l’abandon des demandeurs d’asile MPPS à la frontière avec le Guatemala, par les autorités mexicaines est présentée comme une façon de leur permettre d’échapper à la dangerosité des villes frontalières du Nord tout en espérant qu’ils choississent de retourner par eux-mêmes « chez eux »...

    • In a first, U.S. starts pushing Central American families seeking asylum to Guatemala

      U.S. officials have started to send families seeking asylum to Guatemala, even if they are not from the Central American country and had sought protection in the United States, the Los Angeles Times has learned.

      In July, the Trump administration announced a new rule to effectively end asylum at the southern U.S. border by requiring asylum seekers to claim protection elsewhere. Under that rule — which currently faces legal challenges — virtually any migrant who passes through another country before reaching the U.S. border and does not seek asylum there will be deemed ineligible for protection in the United States.

      A few days later, the administration reached an agreement with Guatemala to take asylum seekers arriving at the U.S. border who were not Guatemalan. Although Guatemala’s highest court initially said the country’s president couldn’t unilaterally enter into such an agreement, since late November, U.S. officials have forcibly returned individuals to Guatemala under the deal.

      At first, U.S. officials said they would return only single adults. But starting Tuesday, they began applying the policy to non-Guatemalan parents and children, according to communications obtained by The Times and several U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services officials.

      One family of three from Honduras, as well as a separate Honduran parent and child, were served with notices on Tuesday that they’d soon be deported to Guatemala.

      The Trump administration has reached similar agreements with Guatemala’s Northern Triangle neighbors, El Salvador and Honduras, in each case obligating those countries to take other Central Americans who reach the U.S. border. Those agreements, however, have yet to be implemented.

      The administration describes the agreements as an “effort to share the distribution of hundreds of thousands of asylum claims.”

      The deals — also referred to as “safe third country” agreements — “are formed between the United States and foreign countries where aliens removed to those countries would have access to a full and fair procedure for determining a claim to asylum or equivalent temporary protection,” according to the federal notice.

      Guatemala has virtually no asylum system of its own, but the Trump administration and Guatemalan government both said the returns would roll out slowly and selectively.

      The expansion of the policy to families could mean many more asylum seekers being forcibly removed to Guatemala.

      Experts, advocates, the United Nations and Guatemalan officials say the country doesn’t have the capacity to handle any sizable influx, much less process potential protection claims. Guatemala’s own struggles with corruption, violence and poverty helped push more than 270,000 Guatemalans to the U.S. border in fiscal 2019.

      Citizenship and Immigration Services and Homeland Security officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

      https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2019-12-10/u-s-starts-pushing-asylum-seeking-families-back-to-guatemala-for-first-time

    • U.S. implements plan to send Mexican asylum seekers to Guatemala

      Mexicans seeking asylum in the United States could be sent to Guatemala under a bilateral agreement signed by the Central American nation last year, according to documents sent to U.S. asylum officers in recent days and seen by Reuters.

      In a Jan. 4 email, field office staff at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) were told Mexican nationals will be included in the populations “amenable” to the agreement with Guatemala.

      The agreement, brokered last July between the administration of Republican President Donald Trump and the outgoing Guatemalan government, allows U.S. immigration officials to send migrants requesting asylum at the U.S.-Mexican border to apply for protection in Guatemala instead.

      Mexico objects to the plan, its foreign ministry said in a statement late on Monday, adding that it would be working with authorities to find “better options” for those that could be affected.

      Trump has made clamping down on unlawful migration a top priority of his presidency and a major theme of his 2020 re-election campaign. His administration penned similar deals with Honduras and El Salvador last year.

      U.S. Democrats and pro-migrant groups have opposed the move and contend asylum seekers will face danger in Guatemala, where the murder rate is five times that of the United States, according to 2017 data compiled by the World Bank. The country’s asylum office is tiny and thinly staffed and critics have argued it lacks the capacity to properly vet a significant increase in cases.

      Guatemalan President-elect Alejandro Giammattei, who takes office this month, has said he will review the agreement.

      Acting Deputy U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Ken Cuccinelli said in a tweet in December that Mexicans were being considered for inclusion under the agreement.

      USCIS referred questions to DHS, which referred to Cuccinelli’s tweet. Mexico’s foreign ministry did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

      Alejandra Mena, a spokeswoman for Guatemala’s immigration institute, said that since the agreement was implemented in November, the United States has sent 52 migrants to the country. Only six have applied for asylum in Guatemala, Mena said.

      On Monday, an additional 33 Central American migrants arrived on a flight to Guatemala City, she said.

      Unaccompanied minors cannot be sent to Guatemala under the agreement, which now applies only to migrants from Honduras, El Salvador and Mexico, according to the guidance documents. Exceptions are made if the migrants can establish that they are “more likely than not” to be persecuted or tortured in Guatemala based on their race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion.

      Numbers of Central American migrants apprehended at the border fell sharply in the second part of 2019 after Mexico deployed National Guard troops to stem the flow, under pressure from Trump.

      Overall, border arrests are expected to drop again in December for the seventh straight month, a Homeland Security official told Reuters last week, citing preliminary data.

      The U.S. government says another reason for the reduction in border crossings is a separate program, known as the Migrant Protection Protocols, that has forced more than 56,000 non-Mexican migrants to wait in Mexico for their U.S. immigration court hearings.

      With fewer Central Americans at the border, U.S. attention has turned to Mexicans crossing illegally or requesting asylum. About 150,000 Mexican single adults were apprehended at the border in fiscal 2019, down sharply from previous decades but still enough to bother U.S. immigration hawks.

      https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-immigration/us-implements-plan-to-send-mexican-asylum-seekers-to-guatemala-idUSKBN1Z51S
      #Guatemala

    • Mexico begins flying, busing migrants back to #Honduras

      Hundreds of Central American migrants who entered southern Mexico in recent days have either been pushed back into Guatemala by Mexican troops, shipped to detention centers or returned to Honduras, officials said Tuesday. An unknown number slipped past Mexican authorities and continued north.

      The latest migrant caravan provided a public platform for Mexico to show the U.S. government and migrants thinking of making the trip that it has refined its strategy and produced its desired result: This caravan will not advance past its southern border.

      What remained unclear was the treatment of the migrants who already find themselves on their way back to the countries they fled last week.

      “Mexico doesn’t have the capacity to process so many people in such a simple way in a couple of days,” said Guadalupe Correa Cabrera, a professor at George Mason University studying how the caravans form.

      The caravan of thousands had set out from Honduras in hopes Mexico would grant them passage, posing a fresh test of U.S. President Donald Trump’s effort to reduce the flow of migrants arriving at the U.S. border by pressuring other governments to stop them.

      Mexican Foreign Secretary Marcelo Ebrard said 2,400 migrants entered Mexico legally over the weekend. About 1,000 of them requested Mexico’s help in returning to their countries. The rest were being held in immigration centers while they start legal processes that would allow them to seek refuge in Mexico or obtain temporary work permits that would confine them to southern Mexico.

      On Tuesday afternoon, Jesus, a young father from Honduras who offered only his first name, rested in a shelter in Tecun Uman, Guatemala, with his wife and their baby, unsure of what to do next.

      “No country’s policy sustains us,” he said in response to hearing Ebrard’s comments about the situation. “If we don’t work, we don’t eat. (He) doesn’t feed us, doesn’t care for our children.”

      Honduran officials said more than 600 of its citizens were expected to arrive in that country Tuesday by plane and bus and more would follow in the coming days.

      Of an additional 1,000 who tried to enter Mexico illegally Monday by wading across the Suchiate river, most were either forced back or detained later by immigration agents, according to Mexican officials.

      Most of the hundreds stranded in the no-man’s land on the Mexican side of the river Monday night returned to Guatemala in search of water, food and a place to sleep. Late Tuesday, the first buses carrying Hondurans left Tecun Uman with approximately 150 migrants heading back to their home country.

      Mexican authorities distributed no water or food to those who entered illegally, in what appeared to be an attempt by the government to wear out the migrants.

      Alejandro Rendón, an official from Mexico’s social welfare department, said his colleagues were giving water to those who turned themselves in or were caught by immigration agents, but were not doing the same along the river because it was not safe for workers to do so.

      “It isn’t prudent to come here because we can’t put the safety of the colleagues at risk,” he said.

      Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said Tuesday that the government is trying to protect the migrants from harm by preventing them from traveling illegally through the country. He said they need to respect Mexican laws.

      “If we don’t take care of them, if we don’t know who they are, if we don’t have a register, they pass and get to the north, and the criminal gangs grab them and assault them, because that’s how it was before,” he said. “They disappeared them.”

      Mexican Interior Minister Olga Sánchez Cordero commended the National Guard for its restraint, saying: “In no way has there been an act that we could call repression and not even annoyance.”

      But Honduras’ ambassador to Mexico said there had been instances of excessive force on the part of the National Guard. “We made a complaint before the Mexican government,” Alden Rivera said in an interview with HCH Noticias without offering details. He also conceded migrants had thrown rocks at Mexican authorities.

      An Associated Press photograph of a Mexican National Guardsman holding a migrant in a headlock was sent via Twitter by acting U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Ken Cuccinelli with the message: “We appreciate Mexico doing more than they did last year to interdict caravans attempting to move illegally north to our southern border.”

      “They absolutely must be satisfied with (Mexico’s) actions because in reality it’s their (the United States’) plan,” said Correa Cabrera, the George Mason professor. “They’re congratulating themselves, because in reality it wasn’t López Obrador’s plan.”

      She said it is an complicated issue for Mexico, but the National Guard had no business being placed at the border to handle immigration because they weren’t trained for it. The government “is sending a group that doesn’t know how to and can’t protect human rights because they’re trained to do other kinds of things,” she said.

      Mexico announced last June that it was deploying the newly formed National Guard to assist in immigration enforcement to avoid tariffs that Trump threatened on Mexican imports.

      Darlin René Romero and his wife were among the few who spent the night pinned between the river and Mexican authorities.

      Rumors had circulated through the night that “anything could happen, that being there was very dangerous,” Romero said. But the couple from Copan, Honduras, spread a blanket on the ground and passed the night 20 yards from a line of National Guard troops forming a wall with their riot shields.

      They remained confident that Mexico would allow them to pass through and were trying to make it to the northern Mexican city of Monterrey, where his sister lives.

      They said a return home to impoverished and gang-plagued Honduras, where most of the migrants are from, was unthinkable.

      https://apnews.com/4d685100193f6a2c521267fe614356df

  • Le côté secret de l’opération canadienne contre les migrants
    Radio Canada, le 21 mai 2019
    https://ici.radio-canada.ca/nouvelle/1170403/operation-canadienne-contre-migrants-secrets-harper-trudeau

    S’associer à de présumés criminels, faire la chasse aux passeurs, fournir de l’équipement de surveillance à des régimes corrompus, voilà autant de moyens pour empêcher des migrants de faire la route jusqu’au Canada. Ce qui s’appelle officiellement la Stratégie canadienne de prévention du passage de clandestins a été lancée en 2010 par le gouvernement Harper et est maintenue depuis par le gouvernement Trudeau.

    En Guinée, le colonel Moussa Tiégboro Camara a été l’un des principaux alliés du Canada. Il y est le grand responsable de la lutte contre le trafic de drogue, la criminalité organisée et le terrorisme. « Le colonel Tiégboro Camara, c’est une personne qui nous a beaucoup aidés, mais son passé était trop lourd pour que je me sente à l’aise [avec le fait ] que le Canada travaille avec lui », affirme Robert.

    Il ne faut pas se leurrer quant au véritable but de la mission que mènent le Canada et d’autres pays étrangers, estime pour sa part François Crépeau. « L’objectif, c’est d’arrêter les migrants. On ne veut plus de migrants », soutient-il. « Tant que des passeurs font passer des migrants, il faut bloquer ça, sans tenir compte du fait que beaucoup de ces migrants sont des réfugiés qui ont besoin de passer et qui vont payer des prix de plus en plus chers, en argent, mais parfois au prix de leur vie. »

    Et les passeurs existent parce que les pays ferment leurs frontières, ajoute M. Crépeau, qui est aussi professeur de droit international à l’Université McGill, à Montréal. « On sait que l’interdiction de passer cause cette industrie. S’il n’y avait pas de blocages aux frontières, il n’y aurait pas de passeurs », explique-t-il.

    « Les systèmes de surveillance, on va les déployer sur d’autres terrains et on va surveiller des minorités, on va surveiller des opposants politiques, des journalistes, des étudiants », dénonce François Crépeau, ex-rapporteur spécial des Nations Unies.

    « Les systèmes que nous mettons en place peuvent servir à d’autres types de répression que cette répression-là. Déjà, celle-là, elle est problématique, compte tenu des violations des droits humains des migrants que ces pays commettent avec notre financement, notre soutien, notre équipement », déplore-t-il.

    "Ce qui m’indigne, c’est toujours l’hypocrisie, quelque part naturelle, des pays comme le Canada, la France, l’Allemagne, la Grande-Bretagne", affirme M. Crépeau. "Ils décident que, au fond, on va accueillir les réfugiés qui parviennent jusqu’à nos frontières, mais on va faire tout ce qu’on peut pour les empêcher d’arriver jusqu’à la frontière. Donc, on va financer, armer, entraîner, équiper des forces de sécurité dans des pays dans lesquels il n’y a pas de garanties de droits humains." »

    #Canada #immigration #migrants #réfugiés #clandestins #passeurs #frontières #dissuasion #surveillance #Stephen_Harper #Justin_Trudeau #Moussa_Tiégboro_Camara #Guinée #Ghana #Sri_Lanka

    • Le même jour, un documentaire choc relate l’existence au Québec de 200 criminels de haut vol (400 au KKKanada).

      La faute à qui ? A cette dernière loi qui permet aux ressortissants mexicains d’entrer « sans visa » au pays de l’hiver. La pègre colombienne aurait sauté sur l’occasion pour faire de faux passeports et se ruer en nombre aux frontières du pays.

      Ahh, la presse KKKanadienne, quel cinéma !

  • L’#OIM, une organisation au service des #frontières… fermées.

    Le 4 avril 2019, l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations (OIM) faisait connaître sa préoccupation au sujet des migrant·e·s détenu·e·s en Libye. Ce communiqué faisait office de « clarification », rendue nécessaire par la prise de position d’António Guterres, secrétaire général de l’ONU. En visite en Libye, celui-ci s’était en effet déclaré « choqué » du sort des personnes migrantes et avait lancé « un appel à la communauté internationale pour le respect du droit international des réfugiés et la nécessité de traiter le problème de la migration d’une manière compatible […] avec les droits de l’Homme ».

    Dans sa mise au point, l’OIM prend pourtant soin de n’incriminer aucun État, pas même cette « communauté internationale » qui avait clairement été pointée par António Guterres. Pour l’OIM, la détention des personnes que ses agents accueillent dans des « points de désembarquement » est certes « arbitraire », mais elle se borne à plaider pour des « solutions alternatives » à l’internement pratiqué par le gouvernement libyen. Le soutien donné à ce dernier par des États européens avides de trouver des partenaires prêts à mettre en oeuvre leurs politiques d’externalisation n’est pas même évoqué. L’OIM est en effet un maillon important des dispositifs de #dissuasion et d’entrave de l’émigration prônés par ses principaux financeurs. Y oeuvrer sans états d’âme lui a permis d’occuper une place de plus en plus grande dans un système onusien où d’autres agences et instances sont un peu plus regardantes en matière de droits humains.

    Le 5 avril, le secrétaire général de l’OIM se déclarait particulièrement préoccupé par « la sécurité des migrants en détention en cas d’escalade des actions militaires ». La reprise des affrontements militaires dans la région de Tripoli rendait la fiction d’une Libye « pays sûr » de moins en moins tenable. Hors de question cependant de renoncer à « défendre » les frontières des pays du nord de la Méditerranée : c’est au #Niger et au #Nigeria qu’ont été déplacées ou reconduites quelques centaines de personnes placées sous la « protection » de l’OIM.

    http://www.migreurop.org/article2918.html
    #contrôles_frontaliers #asile #migrations #réfugiés #fermeture_des_frontières #IOM #renvois #retours_volontaires #externalisation #ONU
    ping @karine4 @reka @_kg_

  • L’#Espagne lance un #clip pour décourager les clandestins sénégalais

    Le gouvernement espagnol, en collaboration avec l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations et le Sénégal, a produit un spot qui met en garde contre les dangers de l’immigration clandestine. Lancé et diffusé mercredi sur les ondes sénégalaises, il s’inscrit dans une vaste campagne de sensibilisation officiellement lancée dans ce pays le 18 juillet dernier.

    Une femme d’âge mûr raconte, en wolof (langue nationale la plus parlée au Sénégal) comment elle a perdu son fils unique qui tentait de rejoindre l’Europe par la mer. L’image de son corps inanimé illustre son témoignage. Puis, c’est au tour du plus célèbre des Sénégalais, le chanteur Youssou N’Dour, de prendre le relais et de lancer ce message : « Ne risque pas ta vie pour rien, tu es l’avenir de l’Afrique ». Le spot qui a été lancé mercredi, au Sénégal, par le gouvernement espagnol en collaboration avec l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations (OIM) s’inscrit dans le cadre de la campagne nationale de lutte contre la migration irrégulière, financée en partie par l’Espagne, menée depuis le 18 juillet dernier au Sénégal. Objectif clairement affiché : dissuader les futurs clandestins sénégalais.

    Silence, on sensibilise !

    Le clip, réalisé par une agence de communication espagnole, vient compléter un dispositif composé de deux autres clips qui mettent en scène les dangers de l’immigration clandestine et qui ont déjà été diffusés sur les trois chaînes de télévision sénégalaise : RTS, RTS2 et Canal info. Notamment aux heures de grande écoute, par exemple avant le journal télévisé du soir. La presse écrite et les radios sénégalaises sont également mises à contribution dans cette vaste opération de communication. Des insertions publicitaires figurent en bonne place dans les journaux et des débats radiophoniques ont été organisés avec des représentants de l’OIM et du ministère sénégalais de l’Intérieur.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=LZBgBeBMTos

    Claire Sambou, 24 ans, étudiante en sciences économiques et membre active de l’Association internationale des étudiants en sciences économiques et commerciales (Aiesec), ONG de référence dans le monde estudiantin, a vu l’un des clips où l’on voit une jeune mère et son fils. L’enfant interroge sa mère sur la disparition de son père mort noyé alors qu’il rejoignait les côtes espagnoles. « C’est assez triste de voir les images de cette maman qui pleure et de cet enfant qui réclame son père. Cela pourra peut-être pousser certains futurs clandestins à ne pas se risquer dans cette aventure parce qu’ils laisseraient leurs familles dans une situation semblable. Mais, en même temps, ça dépend vraiment des gens ».

    Proposer des solutions concrètes aux jeunes

    Dans un pays où la pratique se banalise et est parfois encouragée par les proches, les campagnes de sensibilisation ne suffisent pas à décourager les candidats à l’immigration clandestine. L’OIM, ainsi que les autorités sénégalaises et espagnoles en sont conscientes. D’où des actions concrètes d’insertion et de réinsertion professionnelle. « Nous venons de financer 80 jeunes promoteurs de projets générateurs de revenus dans les régions de Mbour, Ziguinchor, Dakar et St-Louis », souligne Isabelle de Goussencourt, responsable du programme de Renforcement des capacités de gestion de la migration et de lutte contre la migration irrégulière au Sénégal financé par la Commission européenne. « Ces jeunes ont reçu des financements en nature et espèces et nous avons engagé l’Anej (Agence nationale pour l’emploi des jeunes au Sénégal, ndlr) pour assurer leur formation de quinze jours en gestion et entreprenariat ».

    Donner les moyens aux jeunes de rester et de ne pas céder à la tentation d’un exil souvent fatal est devenue l’une des priorités de l’Anej créée en 2001. « Notre mission est de trouver du travail aux jeunes », explique Badou Faye, directeur de la promotion de l’esprit d’entreprise à l’Anej. « Les messages ne suffisent pas pour avoir de l’impact sur les jeunes. C’est incomplet. Lorsqu’on leur dit de ne pas partir, il faut leur proposer quelque chose de concret pour qu’ils restent. J’ai reçu hier quatre jeunes – ils en représentaient une trentaine – qui ont tenté l’aventure et qui sont revenus. Quand je leur ai parlé du projet que nous étudions actuellement avec la coopération espagnole pour mettre en place un réseau de boulangeries un peu partout au Sénégal, il y ont vu une grande opportunité. Pour eux et pour leur localité. » L’Anej sensibilise les jeunes, mais aussi leurs parents. « Nous leur suggérons d’avoir la même ardeur à financer les petits commerces que souhaitent monter leur enfants que celle qu’ils ont quand il s’agit de payer leur passage », poursuit Badou Faye.

    En 2006, près de 32 000 immigrés irréguliers sénégalais sont arrivés aux îles Canaries quand beaucoup d’autres périssaient en mer.

    https://www.afrik.com/l-espagne-lance-un-clip-pour-decourager-les-clandestins-senegalais

    –-> article qui date de 2007, mis ici pour archivage.

    #campagne #dissuasion #vidéo #migrations #Sénégal #migrants_sénégalais #OIM #IOM #organisation_contre_la_migration

    métaliste :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/763551