• Une « loi coronavirus » assure à Viktor Orban des pouvoirs quasi illimités en #Hongrie
    https://www.lemonde.fr/international/article/2020/03/30/hongrie-une-loi-coronavirus-assure-a-viktor-orban-des-pouvoirs-quasi-illimit

    Annotations :

    Les nouvelles dispositions permettent au dirigeant hongrois de prolonger indéfiniment l’état d’urgence en vigueur depuis le 11 mars, sans demander l’aval du Parlement. Sous ce régime, le gouvernement peut « suspendre certaines lois par décret, s’écarter des dispositions statutaires et introduire d’autres mesures extraordinaires », par ordonnances gouvernementales,

    Tags : Hongrie Etat d’urgence #Autoritarisme

  • Orban profite du coronavirus pour renforcer son pouvoir en Hongrie - Monde - Le Télégramme
    https://www.letelegramme.fr/monde/monde-orban-profite-du-coronavirus-pour-renforcer-son-pouvoir-en-hongri


    EPA/MAXPPP

    Pour lutter contre le coronavirus, le Premier ministre hongrois, Viktor Orban, devrait voir son pouvoir grandement renforcé par le parlement, dominé par son parti, le Fidesz. Pour l’opposition, la pandémie est juste un prétexte pour cimenter le contrôle du gouvernement national-conservateur.

    Le Premier ministre hongrois Viktor Orban devrait obtenir, ce lundi, le feu vert du parlement lui octroyant des pouvoirs radicalement renforcés dans le cadre d’un état d’urgence à durée indéterminée, que l’opposition juge « disproportionné » pour lutter contre le coronavirus.

    De multiples atteintes à l’État de droit
    Le projet de loi permettra au dirigeant hongrois de prolonger indéfiniment l’état d’urgence en vigueur depuis le 11 mars, sans demander l’aval du parlement. Le gouvernement pourra ainsi « suspendre l’utilisation de certaines lois par décret, s’écarter des dispositions statutaires et introduire d’autres mesures extraordinaires » dans le but de garantir « santé, sécurité personnelle et matérielle des citoyens, ainsi que l’économie ».

  • Les Cafés Géo » Du populisme et du nationalisme en Hongrie et en Pologne
    http://cafe-geo.net/du-populisme-et-du-nationalisme-en-hongrie-et-en-pologne

    L’histoire factuelle des États dont la naissance ou la renaissance ont été le fruit des travaux de la Conférence de la paix de 1919, et de leurs vicissitudes jusqu’en 1989, peut être facilement consultée. Mais l’intérêt des propos d’Alain Soubigou est d’insister sur quelques données éclairantes pour comprendre les réactions actuelles de nos voisins de l’Est.

    Trois thèmes sont sujets d’inquiétude : la précarité des frontières, la quête d’État et la démocratie. Ainsi les Polonais, sans pays au XIXe siècle, inquiets des discontinuités territoriales au XXe, demandant « Où est ma patrie ? » dans leur hymne national, se focalisent aujourd’hui sur la crainte des migrants. Ainsi l’État de Bohême disparait après la défaite de la Montagne Blanche en 1620 et est intégré aux possessions des Habsbourg jusqu’à la création de la Tchécoslovaquie en 1918. Ainsi alors que le suffrage universel masculin est établi en Europe de l’Ouest après les Révolutions de 1848, les habitants de l’Europe médiane en sont privés pendant encore plusieurs décennies et, lorsque la domination soviétique cesse en 1989, la nouvelle démocratie est rapidement confisquée par certains groupes.

    #europe #populisme #nationalisme #pologne #hongrie #extrême-droite #régression #décadence

  • Hungary’s slow descent into xenophobia, racism and human rights abuses

    Hungary’s refugee and migrant policies have been in breach of international human rights conventions as well as EU regulation for years. Along the country’s border with Serbia there’s now a new, underreported trend affecting migrants: deliberate starvation.

    Near Hungary’s two major border crossings of Röszke and Tompa, two so-called transit zones have been set up in response to the onset of the so-called refugee crisis in 2015. These fortifications are basically container barracks that resemble high-security prisons. Surrounded by wire fences, these are the only places in Hungary where refugees can currently apply for asylum.

    Every day a maximum of 10 people are admitted through their iron gates to file their applications. However, the vast majority is rejected following what looks like a quick trial and must then leave the transit zone immediately. But authorities are now reportedly trying to employ inhumane methods to make migrants give up on their cases before they’re even heard.

    Starving asylum seekers into submission

    According to reports, asylum applicants rarely receive any meals during their stays in the transit zones at all. They are kept behind bars while their applications are being processed having no access to food. The objective behind this practice appears to be the intention to force asylum seekers to leave these transit zones voluntarily out of sheer hunger.

    According to Hungarian law, leaving the transit zone would automatically result in rejection without ever being allowed to submit an asylum application again — in case the same asylum seekers were to return. In 2019, there have been 27 cases recorded cases of asylum seekers being left without food to eat so far. Independent Hungarian media organizations have taken to referring to this practice as “starvation.”

    In a number of cases, the migrants were only given some food after urgent decisions taken by the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) had to be applied, forcing Hungarian authorities to feed them.

    Underage, underfed, underrepresented

    No Hungarian politician is more familiar with this situation than independent opposition MP Bernadett Szél. For years, she has been tirelessly criticizing Hungary’s asylum policies and the outright disregard for certain human rights when it comes to migrants and refugees.

    In recent months, she has been researching this practice of starving refugees in transit zones, and has recently published her findings. Being a member of parliament, Szél was able to visit the transit zones — unlike lawyers or civil rights activists, who are routinely denied access.

    “The transit zones are practically prisons,” Szél told InfoMigrants. “Most of the applicants inside are minors. They have no access to regular education and are only entitled to medical care in urgent cases.”

    No due process – even for Hungarian politicians

    At the beginning of August, Szél sued Hungarian authorities for abuse of power and physical assault against asylum seekers in the transit zones because of the starvation practices. However, her allegations were thrown out of court as being “unfounded.”

    Authorities said that there was no such practice as “starvation,” highlighting that those who felt affected by any such alleged practice were free to voluntarily leave the transit zone at any time.

    For Bernadett Szél, the ruling in favor of the starvation tactics marks a new low point in the country’s attitudes towards refugees and migrants: “There has been virtually no fairness in Hungary’s asylum system based on fair procedures since 2015,” Szél said, “even though we joined the Geneva Convention 30 years ago.”

    Emergency powers

    In the spring of 2015, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán turned the issue of migration into a major political campaign issue. Many Hungarians felt a sense of unease about the thousands of refugees who were crossing the Hungarian border each day mainly on their way to Austria, Germany and other EU nations.

    Against this backdrop, Orbán promised to deliver a crackdown on “illegal migration” and to protect the country against Islamic terrorism, mass immigration and cultural alienation. In the early summer of 2015, Orbán’s government built a fence along the border with Serbia. By September 2015, the country further sealed off that border hermetically, and has since deployed thousands of border guards to the area.

    At the same time, the Hungarian parliament adopted a set of special laws relating to migration after announcing a “state of emergency.” These have been in force since the beginning of 2016. The provisions of the “migration emergency” give law enforcement officials and the military wide-reaching operational powers across the country. For example, civil rights such as freedom of movement or freedom of assembly can unduly be withdrawn, and homes can be searched without a legal warrant.

    Special refugee courts

    Márta Pardavi, the co-chair of the Hungarian Helsinki Committee, which provides legal assistance to refugees and migrants, has criticized the repeated extension of the so-called “migration emergency” laws since 2016, saying that there is “no real and fact-based reason for this.”

    “(It) only provides the government with the framework for its inhumane action against refugees,” Pardavi told InfoMigrants.

    As part of the emergency measures, the government also introduced a special court to deal with cases involving refugees and migrants: judges carry out expedited proceedings at the court in the southern city of Szeged, focusing on issues like migrants who illegally crossed the border or committed other offenses, including damaging the border fence.

    Proceedings usually last only one or two hours and contravene various constitutional and other legal standards. For example, any indictments and verdicts delivered by the court do not need to be translated in writing into the mother tongue of the defendants. It is not even required to identify the defendants sufficiently. The court also treats minors aged 14 and over as adults.

    No practical avenues left to qualify for asylum

    Orbán’s government has also tightened the country’s asylum legislation in numerous ways in 2017 and 2018 to reflect his iron-fisted approach to immigration. Hungarian immigration laws are now considered to be the most restrictive within the European Union.

    Under current regulations, migrants entering from a third country deemed to be a safe country of origin are no longer entitled to asylum at all; their applications are automatically rejected. However, as all of the neighboring countries have been deemed to be such safe third countries and nearly all migrants and refugees pass through these neighboring countries on their way to Hungary, it is now practically impossible for refugees to obtain asylum status in Hungary.

    Furthermore, the new laws stipulate that refugees can only apply for asylum in the transit zones at the national borders, which they are not allowed to leave for the duration of the proceedings. Asylum procedures can also be terminated immediately and without appeal if the applicant leaves the transit zone at during this process or is deemed to not cooperate with the authorities.

    However, a small number of asylum seekers still manage to receive asylum or a temporary protection status in Hungary. In the first eight months of 2019, there were only 35 people admitted into Hungary — out of a total of 476 applicants. The explanation for this is that Hungarian authorities proceed according to the Geneva Refugee Convention, as a government spokesman told InfoMigrants.

    Márta Pardavi of the Hungarian Helsinki Committee, however, explains that judges sometimes overrule the decisions made by the immigration authorities, thereby forcing the Hungarian state to grant asylum to the applicants. “This shows that some judges still dare to oppose the official party line, despite the massive pressure put on the judicial system and asylum procedures.”

    Populism, nationalism, xenophobia

    In addition to introducing new laws targeting potential asylum seekers directly, the Hungarian government has also launched a series of campaigns to gang up support among Fidesz voters against migrants as well — or as the government calls them “national consultations.” These so-called consultations appear to have been designed to fuel anti-refugee sentiments among the population and by presenting Orbán’s government as protectors of the country against the backdrop of a perceived threat of unmitigated immigration.

    The first such campaign took place in the early summer of 2015, when the government launched a nationwide billboard campaign with a controversial slogan saying “if you come to Hungary, you can not take away the work places from Hungarians.” Other posters followed that were billed as part of the campaign, containing slogans like “if you come to Hungary you have to respect the culture of the Hungarians.”

    Stop Soros law

    Another government-sponsored campaign that came up as part of the overall anti-migrant rhetoric was the so-called “Stop Soros” drive, which featured some not-so-hidden anti-Semitic undertones: the campaign was targeted against Hungarian-American stock market billionaire George Soros, a Holocaust-survivor, who has since become a divisive figure in Hungary on account of the government’s ongoing campaign against him.

    Large parts of Soros’ immense fortune have been transferred to his Open Society Foundation which since the late 1980s has supported democratization processes, the rule of law and civil society initiatives across Eastern Europe. Orbán, once an Open Society scholar himself, has now taken to accusing Soros of planning to settle millions of migrants in Europe in an alleged bid to undermine his government and destroy the “European way of life” — echoing sentiments that during the Nazi rule of large swathes of Europe had been brought against other Jewish people of influence.

    At the end of the campaign against Soros, the Hungarian government passed the so-called “Stop Soros” law, which targets mostly non-governmental organizations supported by Soros. The law calls for the penalization of all acts of “promotion of illegal migration” — be they big or small. Under the law, even small information events about current trends in migration could be penalized.

    Mon-governmental organizations deemed to be engaged in such alleged promotion of illegal migration will also now be subject to a 25% tax on all income and donations, effectively limiting the funds that organizations like the Open Society Foundation can spend on philanthropic activities and other forms of outreach.

    EU intervention

    In July 2018, the European Union launched infringement proceedings against Hungary, targeting both the tightened asylum legislation and the Stop Soros laws introduced in recent years, and more recently has also initiated another infringement case against the Hungarian government’s alleged practice of “starving” asylum seekers at the transit zone.

    There is still no final decision in any of the cases as the Court of Justice of the European Union (ECJ) continues to examine them. However, the Hungarian government said it would not accept any ruling that would demand any commitments on its part that could result in changes to its asylum legislation.

    Speaking to InfoMigrants, a Hungarian government spokesman said that the outgoing “migration-friendly” EU Commission was working hard" to bring even more migrants to the European Union and thus to Hungary."

    “The Hungarian people repeatedly said no to immigration. Now the outgoing Commission wants to punish Hungary and the Hungarian people by all means. In our view, these steps taken by the outgoing Commission are deeply anti-democratic and incorrect, as it wants to force the new EU Commission to follow a coercive route, leaving no room to maneuver one of the main problems of the continent.”

    Hanging on to power

    There are also parts of the Hungarian migration policies, however, where the EU cannot intervene. This is especially true for the way the government veers the public debate on migration. Orbán and his government routinely counter almost any criticism against any of their policies by stating that these criticisms come from “pro-migration forces.” They push news stories in government media outlets about horrors relating to migration elsewhere in Europe, most of which have been proven to be invented or distorted.

    Independent MP Bernadett Szél said that Orbán “uses the refugee crisis and the issue of migration as a means to maintain his position of power, so his propaganda machine is constantly spreading a distorted picture of reality.”

    A climate of fear

    There have been far-reaching consequences to the government’s way of handling the public discourse on the migration issue: for example, non-governmental organizations report that they now face steep challenges whenever the want to rent spaces to hold events, as landlords fear they might have to face legal consequences if they rent out their spaces to groups that later might be regarded as out of the government’s favor. They often prefer to decline renting spaces to NGOs than risk being penalized themselves.

    It is commonly known that private social media accounts of public employees are more or less systematically monitored by the government. Anyone working in the public service is therefore careful to avoid having any connection to anyone who might be seen to be in favor of a more liberal approach to migration.

    Above all, people of color — mainly tourists but also Hungarian citizens — report that they increasingly suffer from being exposed to public insults, especially if they are perceived as being immigrants of any sort. There are been cases were some were even arrested as suspected illegal migrants only because of the color of their skin.

    However, “white” Hungarians don’t appear to be safe from this climate of fear either. In October 2017, the case of Zoltán Fenyvesi made headlines. Fenyvesi, a pension operator from the western Hungarian village of Öcsény, wanted to offer a recognized refugee family a one-week free holiday including an adventure program for children. His gesture of humanity, however, triggered resentment across the village, the tires of his two cars were cut, some villagers openly threatened him with violence. In the end, he canceled the family visit for security reasons.

    Even Orbán got involved in the affair, saying he had found "nothing to complain about “the reactions displayed by the villagers.”

    “They expressed their opinions in a determined, loud and understandable way.”

    https://www.infomigrants.net/en/post/20220/hungary-s-slow-descent-into-xenophobia-racism-and-human-rights-abuses

    #xénophobie #Hongrie #asile #migrations #réfugiés #anti-migrants #anti-réfugiés #droits_humains #populisme #nationalisme #peur #murs #frontières #procédure_d'asile

    –------
    voir aussi:
    Using Fear of the “Other,” Orbán Reshapes Migration Policy in a Hungary Built on Cultural Diversity
    https://seenthis.net/messages/807348

  • A la frontière serbo-hongroise... on emprisonne les réfugiés qui tentent de la passer... et sur lesquels les gardes-frontières avaient tiré...

    Refugees who were shot at by Hungarian police last week as they tried to cross the Hungarian border were convicted this Friday, 07.02.2020 (https://hungarytoday.hu/migrants-roszke-sentence-court). Four refugees, two Syrians and two Palestinians, were arrested last week while attempting to cross the #Reska border crossing. They were sentenced to one year in prison. A fifth man, who crossed the border independently, was sentenced to ten months in prison and expelled from the country for four years. On Thursday, some 300 refugees gathered in the cross-zone near the #Kelebija border crossing (https://www.blic.rs/vesti/drustvo/dosta-nam-je-svega-hocemo-u-madjarsku-oko-300-migranata-okupilo-se-u-meduzoni/m5qwk1p), protesting peacefully and seeking entry to Hungary. The next day, refugees were taken from Kelebija to reception centres in Serbia and the border crossing was reopened. (http://rs.n1info.com/Vesti/a567286/Migranti-sa-Kelebije-prebaceni-u-prihvatne-centre-otvoren-granicni-prelaz)

    #Hongrie #asile #migrations #réfugiés #frontières #criminalisation #arrestation #fermeture_des_frontières #Serbie #ouverture_des_frontières #résistance #protestation

    Reçu via la mailing-list Inicijativa Dobrodosli, mail du 11.02.2020

    –---------

    Pour rappel...

    Hongrie : des #tirs de sommation pour dissuader des dizaines de migrants à la frontière avec la #Serbie
    https://seenthis.net/messages/823626

    ping @karine4 @isskein

  • 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

  • En #Europe_centrale, une « #alliance des villes libres » contre le populisme

    Les maires de #Budapest, #Varsovie, #Prague et #Bratislava ont signé un #pacte contre les dérives des gouvernements du #groupe_de_Visegrad.

    Ils ont la quarantaine ou presque, sont de fervents défenseurs de la #démocratie_libérale et fermement proeuropéens. A l’occasion d’une journée hautement symbolique, les maires de Prague, Varsovie, Budapest et Bratislava ont célébré, lundi 16 décembre dans la capitale hongroise, la naissance d’une « #alliance_des_villes_libres » destinée à contrecarrer les tendances populistes de leurs gouvernements respectifs.

    Dans ce « groupe de Visegrad » constitué de la #Pologne, la #Hongrie, la #République_tchèque et la #Slovaquie, qui fait régulièrement l’actualité pour ses dérives en matière d’Etat de droit et de refus des #valeurs_européennes, l’initiative des élus des quatre capitales montre que la #résistance_locale est réelle, même si elle est souvent encore minoritaire au niveau national.

    « Ilots de #liberté »

    « Nous venons de différents partis politiques, mais nous avons les mêmes #valeurs. Nos villes sont libres, progressistes, tolérantes et surtout proeuropéennes », a vanté le maire de Varsovie, Rafal Trzaskowski, largement élu en 2018 contre un candidat ultraconservateur du parti Droit et justice, qui gouverne la Pologne depuis 2015 en multipliant les atteintes à l’indépendance des médias et de la justice.

    Cette alliance a été rendue possible par la victoire historique d’un candidat de l’opposition à la mairie de Budapest le 13 octobre. Alors que la capitale hongroise était gouvernée depuis 2010 par le Fidesz, le parti du premier ministre nationaliste Viktor Orban, Gergely Karacsony, président d’un petit parti de centre gauche, a réussi à l’emporter avec 50,9 % des voix. Le Fidesz a aussi perdu à cette occasion le contrôle de six autres grandes villes du pays.

    https://www.lemonde.fr/international/article/2019/12/17/en-europe-centrale-une-alliance-des-villes-libres-contre-le-populisme_602311
    #urban_matter #villes #résistance #populisme #pro-Europe #progressisme #tolérance

    ping @karine4

    via @mobileborders

  • UNHCR Serbia Update, November 2019

    • 1,035 asylum seekers reported collective expulsion from neighbouring countries (439 from Romania, 357 from Hungary, 133 from Croatia and 96 from BiH). 51% of them alleged to have been denied access to asylum and 19% maltreatment by authorities of these countries. Amongst them were asylum seekers, who were expelled to Serbia outside lawful procedures from Hungary (three) or BiH (two), though they had never been in Serbia before. The terrible danger of irregular movements was again illustrated in the early morning of 11 November, when a dinghy with ten migrants heading from the port of #Apatin towards Croatia overturned in the Danube, leading to four missing passengers, feared to have drowned.

    https://reliefweb.int/report/serbia/unhcr-serbia-update-november-2019
    #Serbie #push-back #refoulement #refoulements #push-backs #refoulements_collectifs #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Roumanie #Hongrie #Croatie #Bosnie #Bosnie-Herzégovine #par_ricochet

    Il y a aussi, dans ce rapport, la nouvelle de #décès #morts :

    The terrible danger of irregular movements was again illustrated in the early morning of 11 November, when a dinghy with ten migrants heading from the port of #Apatin towards Croatia overturned in the Danube, leading to four missing passengers, feared to have drowned

    Sur les #refoulements_en_chaîne...

    Comme ce qui se passait en 2013, et que j’avais signalé dans un texte écrit pour la revue Vivre Ensemble (@vivre) paru en septembre 2014 :
    Serbie | L’antichambre de l’Europe

    Une fois récolté l’argent nécessaire, ils et elles reprennent leur route vers l’Europe, souvent via la Hongrie. L’UE ayant renforcé les contrôles à la frontière hongro-serbe, les migrants restent fréquemment bloqués en Serbie. Quant à ceux qui parviennent à la franchir, ils risquent de se retrouver… en Grèce ! Les conditions d’accueil en Hongrie conduisent en effet nombre de migrants à refuser de donner leurs empreintes digitales pour ne pas s’y trouver coincés par le jeu du système Dublin. Ils sont alors acheminés vers la frontière serbe, selon les témoignages que nous avons recueillis. Et lorsqu’ils sont interceptés en Serbie, ils sont condamnables à une peine de prison (10 à 15 jours) ou à une amende et reçoivent un ordre d’expulsion. Parfois, ils sont directement retransférés en Macédoine. La Macédoine ayant notamment signé un accord de réadmission avec Athènes, les migrants peuvent, au final, se retrouver en Grèce. Un pays structurellement défaillant en matière de protection, au point que les renvois Dublin y sont illégaux depuis 2011. La Hongrie continue ainsi d’y renvoyer indirectement les migrants, par le jeu de refoulements en chaîne.

    https://asile.ch/chronique/serbie-lantichambre-de-leurope

    ping @isskein

  • Après les #milices qui surveillent les #frontières en #Hongrie, #Bulgarie, #République_Tchèque :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/719995

    ... voici le même type de groupes en #Slovénie...
    Vigilantes in Slovenia patrol borders to keep out migrants

    Blaz Zidar has a mission: patrol along a razor-wire fence on Slovenia’s border with Croatia, catch migrants trying to climb over, hand them to police and make sure they are swiftly sent out of the country.

    The 47-year-old former Slovenian army soldier, dressed in camouflage trousers with a long knife hanging from his belt, is one of the vigilantes who call themselves “home guards” — a mushrooming anti-migrant movement that was until recently unthinkable in the traditionally liberal Alpine state. The name of the self-styled group evokes memories of the militia that sided with fascists during World War II.

    “I would prefer to enjoy my retirement peacefully, but security reasons are preventing this,” Zidar said as he embarked on yet another of his daily foot patrols together with his wife near their home village of Radovica nestled idyllically among vineyards and lush green forested hills.

    Zidar complained that he had to act because Slovenian police aren’t doing their job of guarding the borders from the migrant flow which peaked in 2015 when hundreds of thousands of refugees from the Middle East, Africa and Asia, fleeing wars and poverty, crossed from Greece, Bulgaria, Serbia and Macedonia via Hungary or Croatia and Slovenia toward more prosperous Western European states.

    Zidar said that his six children often join them in the border monitoring mission “because they have to learn how to protect their nation from intruders.”

    Slovenia’s volunteer guards illustrate strong anti-migrant sentiments not only in the small European Union nation of 2 million people, but also across central and eastern Europe which is a doorway into Western Europe for migrants and where countries such as Hungary have faced criticism for open anti-migrant policies. Similar right-wing guards that frequently attacked migrants crossing the borders previously openly operated in Hungary and Bulgaria.

    Police in Croatia — an EU member state that is still not part of the borderless EU travel zone — routinely face accusations of pushbacks and violence against migrants trying to come in from Bosnia. In Slovenia, the authorities are putting up additional fences on the border with Croatia after Italy’s former hard-line interior minister, Matteo Salvini, threatened “physical barriers” would be built between Slovenia and Italy if the migrant flow wasn’t completely stopped.

    The fiery anti-migrant rhetoric by Salvini and Hungarian President Victor Orban, who was the first to order fences on Hungary’s border with Serbia at the start of the migrant crisis, have resonated among some in Slovenia, an exceptionally calm, nature-loving country.

    Miha Kovac, a Slovenian political analyst who is a professor at the University of Ljubljana, described the anti-migrant guards as “guys with big beer bellies who don’t have much of an education, who didn’t have much of a career, who don’t know what to do with themselves in the contemporary world.

    “They find their meaning in this kind of movement and this kind of hatred toward migrants.”

    Kovac said that in the short run, the right-wing groups represent no real danger to the tiny EU nation. But if the European migrant crisis continues “this kind of movement might become more aggressive.”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zte9nDFcACY

    “Slovenia is a country of 2 million and if you would become a kind of immigrant pocket with the population of ... 20, 30, 40, 50,000 immigrants, this could cause quite significant problems,” Kovac said.

    Slovenian authorities don’t seem to mind the self-styled guards patrolling the country’s borders, as long as they don’t do anything against the law.

    “The self-organization of individuals does not in any way imply mistrust of police work,” said France Bozicnik, the head of criminal police at a police station near the border. “It’s just the opposite.”

    “People call us on the phone every day and give us information about suspicious vehicles and suspicious persons, and we sincerely thank them for this information,” he said. “They are welcome to continue with this reporting.”

    Nevertheless, the images of masked men in military uniforms that appeared about a year ago have shocked many in Slovenia, the birthplace of U.S. first lady Melania Trump. The largest volunteer group called the Stajerska Garda was filmed taking an oath to secure public order in the country.

    The group commander, Andrej Sisko, said his goal is “to train people to defend their country and help the military and police at a time of massive migrations from the African and Asian states, mostly Muslims.”


    Sisko, who spent six months in prison for his paramilitary activities, insisted that his guards don’t carry real weapons or do anything illegal.

    “People are mostly supporting us, they are stopping and congratulating us on the streets,” Sisko said in an interview with The Associated Press as four of his men in camouflage uniforms, wearing genuine-looking mock guns, stood watch at his house in the suburb of the northern Slovenian town of #Maribor.

    With the continuing migrant flow in the region, human rights groups have accused authorities in Slovenia, Serbia, Greece, Hungary and particularly Croatia of illegal and forced pushbacks from their borders.

    Witnesses cited by the Border Violence Monitoring Network described Croatian police officers at the border with Bosnia burning clothes, sleeping bags, backpacks and tents in addition to targeting other possessions such as cellphones, cash and personal documents. Croatian officials have repeatedly denied the claims.

    “The police first attacked by shooting up in the air, and then they ordered us to lay down,” said Shabbir Ahmed Mian from Pakistan, adding that after police body searches they “pushed” the group of 15 that included women, children and the elderly into a small van that dumped them back to Bosnia.

    “We couldn’t breathe, there was no oxygen,” he said.

    https://www.apnews.com/57424e6bf60046e594b4c052bac86b6c

    #Stajerska_Garda #Andrey_Sisko
    #asile #migrations #réfugiés #xénophobie #racisme #patrouilles #chasse_aux_migrants #anti-réfugiés #milices #milices_privées #extrême_droite #néo-nazis

    ping @reka @isskein @marty

    • Nouvelle reçu via le rapport « Border violence monitoring network - Balkan Region » de septembre 2019 (p. 13 et segg.) :
      https://www.borderviolence.eu/balkan-region-report-september-2019

      Extrait :

      SloveniaVigilante groups patrol the Slovenian border with CroatiaOn September 17th the Associated Press reported (https://www.apnews.com/57424e6bf60046e594b4c052bac86b6c) on the alarming activities of a Slovenian para-military group called “#Stajerska_Varda”, operating along the border with Croatia. Members of the group are reportedly taking part in vigilante activities, apprehending people-in-transit who try to cross the border, and calling the police to push them back. Until now the groups’ members have not been observed carrying out any violent actions, but their rise in numbers and presence on the border is deeply concerning. A video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m2KOSTXp4fA

      ) from October 2018 shows a large number of armed people taking an oath nearMaribor, stating their intent to take border security into their own hands.

      Andrey Sisko, the leader of the far-right group, confirmed that at that time the militia had existed for longer than a year. Sisko himself was arrested and detained (https://www.total-slovenia-news.com/politics/3328-militia-leader-jailed-for-trying-to-subvert-the-constituti) for six months with the charge of “trying to subvert the constitutional order”. He was released in March. The open activities of far-right groups at the border are a telling development, not only for pressure on transit conditions, but also the growth in nationalist logic pervading Slovenia today. Stajerska Varda have stepped into the political void opened up by centre and right-wing politicians who have stoked domestic opinion against people-in-transit. While extreme right activists frame their role as a necessary defense, their actual ideology is explicitly aggressive. As shown in a report (https://eeradicalization.com/the-militarization-of-slovenian-far-right-extremism) by European Eye on radicalization, Stajerska Varda has the nationalist ideas of “Greater Slovenjia” (https://eeradicalization.com/the-militarization-of-slovenian-far-right-extremism) as a reference point, and has inserted itself in a context of growing militarization as part of Slovenia’s right.

      Yet media response to this rise in armed groups presented some worrying attitudes towards the issue. Namely the views of Miha Kovac, a political analyst interviewed by AP for their report, is dangerous in two senses. Kovac dismisses radical groups as “guys with big beer bellies [...] who don’t know what to do with themselves”, and even goes on to allege that the root cause of facism is the presence of migrants in Slovenia. Marking out people-in-transit as instigators falls into a traditional cycle of victim blaming, a route which absolves the role of fear mongering party politics in abetting radicalization.
      As shown by right wing leaders around Europe, such as Matteo Salvini and Victor Orban, open praise for and facilitation of radical groups is an explicit tactic used to build a right wing consensus on the ground. The example of vigilantes operating in Hungaryas early as 2015, suggests that the development of state borders and growth of the extra-parliamentary right go hand in hand. These two strands are evidently complicit in Slovenia, seen especially in the silence at the party and state levels in regards to a self publicized military juntaoperating on state soil. September’s revelations again highlight the liminal space between conservative migration politics and paramilitary fascism. The existence of these activities call into direct question the responsibilities of the Slovenian state, and are a concerning augmentation of the current institutional pushback framework.

      https://www.borderviolence.eu/wp-content/uploads/September-2019-Report-1.pdf

    • Patriot games: Slovenian paramilitaries face down migrant ’threat’ on border

      Dressed in camouflage and armed with air rifles, Slovenian paramilitaries moves in formation through woods a stone’s throw from Croatia, patrolling a border zone where the group’s leader says illegal migration is rife.

      The more than 50-strong group, some of whom mask their faces with balaclavas and which includes a handful of women, is led by Andrej Sisko, who also heads Gibanje Zedinjena Slovenija, a fringe nationalist party that has so far failed to win seats in parliament.

      He believes authorities are failing in their duty to protect Slovenia against what he views as the migrant threat, and founded Stajerska and Krajnska Varda (Stajerska and Krajnska Guard) to fill that gap.

      Members of both organistions were participating in the patrol when Reuters TV met them.

      “It is a duty of all of us to ensure security in our own country,” he said. “If state bodies who are paid for that cannot or do not want to ensure security we can help ensure it, that is what we do.”

      Anti-migrant sentiment in Slovenia and other ex-Communist states has risen sharply since 2015, when eastern Europe bore the initial brunt of a refugee crisis.

      Much of the region has since then resisted attempts by EU authorities in Brussels to enforce a continent-wide quota system for new arrivals, which Slovenia has however signed up for.

      According to Slovenian police, numbers of migrants crossing illegally from Croatia to Slovenia - where a razor-wire fence has been erected along stretches of the border since 2015 - rose to 11,786 in the first nine months of this year from 6,911 a year earlier.

      Sisko this year served time in jail for forming Stajerska Varda and urging the overthrow of state institutions.

      He says the group, which generally meets in the border zone at weekends, does not intercept migrants - which he emphasises would be against the law - but advertises their presence to security forces.

      Police told Reuters they were monitoring the group’s behaviour and had not detected any recent illegal activities.

      https://www.reuters.com/article/us-slovenia-paramilitary/patriot-games-slovenian-paramilitaries-face-down-migrant-threat-on-border-i

    • On en parle ici aussi :
      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 #milices 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 ».

      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://seenthis.net/messages/791703#message811227

  • Using Fear of the “Other,” Orbán Reshapes Migration Policy in a Hungary Built on Cultural Diversity

    In summer 2015, more than 390,000 asylum seekers, mostly Muslim, crossed the Serbian-Hungarian border and descended on the Keleti railway station in Budapest. For Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and his Fidesz party, the arrival of these asylum seekers was not a humanitarian issue but a Muslim invasion threatening the national security, social cohesion, and Christian identity of the Hungarian nation. In the four years since this episode, the fear of the “other” has resulted in a string of anti-immigrant actions and policies.

    For example, barbed wire fences were constructed to deter asylum seekers from entering Hungarian territory. Transit zones on the same Serbian-Hungarian border followed, and since the end of March 2017, anyone applying for asylum in Hungary can only do so from a transit zone and is detained there for the duration of the asylum procedure. Conditions there have been grim. The Hungarian Helsinki Committee (HHC) contends rejected asylum seekers inside the transit zones are denied food, to the point of starvation.

    Furthermore, the Orbán government is fighting anti-immigrant battles not just at the border, but also in Brussels. Under the EU burden-sharing scheme, Hungary was supposed to accept 1,294 refugees. However, the prime minister said that while Hungarians have “no problems” with the local Muslim community, any EU plan to relocate asylum seekers, including many Muslims, would destroy Hungary’s Christian identity and culture. In his attempt to quash admissions, Orbán signaled that his party may split with Europe’s main conservative group and join an anti-immigrant, nationalist bloc in the EU Parliament led by Italy’s Matteo Salvini. Finally, Hungary’s latest anti-immigrant law criminalizes assistance to unauthorized migrants by civil-society organizations and good Samaritans.

    These anti-immigrant sentiments are relatively new. Given Hungary’s geopolitical location, immigration and emigration have been a reality since the birth of the country. At times, Hungary has been quite a multicultural society: for example, during the Habsburg Empire, Hungarians coexisted with Germans, Slavs, Italians, Romanians, and Jews originating in Germany, Poland, and Russia. Later, in the aftermath of World War II, significant population movements greatly modified the ethnic map of Eastern and Central Europe, and many ethnic Hungarians ended up in neighboring countries, some of whom would return later.

    Yet, it is strange to write about multicultural Hungary in 2019. Despite population movements in the postwar and communist eras and significant refugee arrivals during the Yugoslav wars in the late 1980s and throughout the 1990s, the country has only recently been grappling with the arrival of migrants and asylum seekers from beyond Europe. Now several years out from the 2015-16 European migrant and refugee crisis, the Orbán administration continues to pursue policies to limit humanitarian and other arrivals from beyond Europe, while welcoming those of Hungarian ancestry. Hungarian civil society has attempted to provide reception services for newcomers, even as the number of asylum seekers and refugees has dwindled: just 671 asylum seekers and 68 refugees were present in Hungary in 2018, down from 177,135 and 146, respectively, in 2015.

    This article examines historical and contemporary migration in Hungary, from its multicultural past to recent attempts to criminalize migration and activities of those who aim to help migrants and asylum seekers.

    Immigrants and Their Reception in Historic Hungary

    In the 11th century, the Carpathian Basin saw both organized settlement of certain peoples and a roaming population, which was in reaction to certain institutional changes in the medieval Hungarian kingdom. Historians note that newcomers came to historic Hungary searching for a better life: first across the entire Carpathian Basin and later in the Danube Valley. In the 12th century, Hungarian King Géza II invited Saxons to settle in Transylvania and later, when the Teutonic Knights were expelled from Burzenland (in modern-day Romania), they were welcomed in Brasov. The aftermath of the Tartar invasion in 1241 was followed by settlement of immigrants from Slovakia, Poland, and Russia. Ethnic minority groups fleeing Bulgaria settled between the Duna and Tisza rivers, while Romanians found new homes in Transylvania. King Bela IV erected new cities populated predominantly by German, Italian, and Jewish immigrants hailing from Central Europe and Germany.

    The 15th century saw a large settlement of Southern Slavs. The desertification of Transdanubia (the part of Hungary west of the Danube River) was remedied with a settlement of Croats and large groups of Serbians. When the medieval Kingdom of Hungary fell to the Ottoman Empire in 1526, some of the Southern Slavs moved to the parts under the Ottoman occupation voluntarily, while those who participated in the conquest were dispatched by the Ottoman rulers. At the same time, large number of ethnic Hungarians fled north and settled in the area of contemporary Slovakia.

    The next large group, of Germans, arrived in the 18th century during the Habsburg dynasty. The German settlement was part of the Habsburg population policy aimed at filling the void left by the Hungarians who perished during Ottoman rule, especially in the southern territories, around Baranya County and the Banat region. Germans also settled in Pest, Vecees, Buda, Esztergom, and the Pilis Mountains. By 1790, an estimated 70,000 ethnic Germans lived in Southern Hungary.

    While German immigrants were largely welcomed in 18th century Hungary, the same cannot be said about Romanians. During the reign of Empress Maria Theresa, Hungarian nobility voiced serious concerns about the rapid increase of the Romanian population. The nobles thought Romanians would ruin Transylvania.

    The Habsburg administration did not want to repeat the mistakes of the Ottomans and decided to control population movement along the Serbian border. A census conducted in the 13 villages of the Tisza region and 24 villages along the Maros river identified 8,000 border guards on duty. Despite these precautions, large-scale emigration from Serbia continued during the Habsburg era, with approximately 4,000 people crossing over to Hungary.

    Jews were the largest immigrant group in Hungary in the 19th century. Some came from the western territories of the Habsburg Empire—Germany, Bohemia, and Moravia—while others fled persecution in Russia. The arrival of Jews to the Hungarian territory was viewed favorably by Emperor Franz Josef I and Hungarian liberal politicians. Well-heeled Jewish families acquired noble status and rose in the aristocratic ranks, and many became patrons of the arts. At the beginning of World War I, an estimated 1 million Jews lived within the boundaries of what is present-day Hungary. However, the early appreciation of the contributions of the Jewish people did not last. Anti-Semitic sentiments flared up, culminating in the notorious Tiszaeszlár affair, in which Jews were accused of kidnapping and murdering Christian children in order to use their blood as part of religious rituals. Later, the violent repression known as the White Terror (1919-21) victimized many Jews, who were blamed by the right-wing camp for the severe sanctions placed on Hungary under the Treaty of Trianon in the aftermath of World War I.

    Refugees During and After World War II

    During World War II, Hungary was well disposed towards refugees, especially from Poland. Prime Minister Pál Teleki gave refugee status to some 70,000 Polish soldiers and nearly 40,000 civilians when Hitler invaded Poland. Ninety-one refugee camps for military personnel and 88 camps for civilians were established. A joint effort by Hungarian and international aid organizations and the Red Cross resulted in the establishment of the Committee for Hungarian-Polish Refugee Affairs. As the war escalated, most Polish officers and soldiers departed Hungary to join the Polish Home Army fighting Germany alongside Britain and France. In late 1940, a group of French refugees arrived in Hungary. By 1942, there were 600 French refugees in the country.

    The immediate post-WWII period—with its ensuing peace treaties, evictions, and forced settlements—resulted in considerable population movements, significantly modifying the ethnic map in Eastern and Central Europe. Some 200,000 ethnic Germans were evicted from Hungary, and 73,000 Slovaks left as part of what was described as a “population exchange.” Judit Juhász estimated that in the three years following the end of the war more than 100,000 people left Hungary. At the same time, 113,000 ethnic Hungarians were resettled in Hungary from Czechoslovakia, 125,000 from Transylvania, 45,500 from Yugoslavia, and 25,000 from the Soviet Union. Technically, ethnic Hungarians coming to Hungary were not considered migrants, but rather returning citizens.

    When the communist regime took over in 1947, the borders were closed and the government prohibited migration. Illegal departure from the country and failure to return from abroad became a crime. The borders opened briefly in 1956 when nearly 200,000 people fled Hungary during the uprising against the communist government. Most went to nearby Austria, but 38,000—mainly students and scientists—were airlifted to the United States, in a mobilization sponsored by the U.S. government and National Academy of Sciences. Their integration into American society was relatively easy due to their young age and high educational attainment. The Hungarian government tried to encourage the refugees to return by offering them amnesty, but only about 147 decided to return to Hungary from the United States.

    Migration in the Post-Socialist Period

    Although Hungary allowed some refugees to settle in its territory—Greeks after World War II, Chileans after the fall of the Allende government, and Kurds during the Iran-Iraq war—the country did not witness a large number of asylum seekers until the late 1980s, just months before the fall of communism in Hungary in 1989. Starting in mid-1987, ethnic Hungarians, discriminated by the Ceausescu regime, fled Romania to seek refuge in Hungary. By the beginning of 1988, some 40,000 Romanian citizens, primarily of Hungarian ancestry, arrived. By the fall of the same year, the number doubled, an exodus the author witnessed firsthand.

    For the most part, the central government left the responsibility for assisting refugees to private and municipal authorities. The Hungarian Red Cross opened a special information bureau in Budapest and mounted a national relief appeal called Help to Help. Twelve million forints (the equivalent of approximately US $250,000 at the time) were raised, including 1 million from foreign donations. Assistance programs were established in Budapest and in Debrecen, a town on the border with Romania, where most of the refugees came first. Local Red Cross chapters, municipal and county agencies, and local churches—especially the Hungarian Reformed Church—were also involved in the relief program. The assistance included cash grants, job placements, and Hungarian language training for ethnic Romanians. Clothing, blankets, dishes, and utensils were also provided. When the author visited Debrecen in 1988, most refugees were kept in school dormitories as housing in socialist Hungary was scarce.

    At the time, there was no formal procedure to separate refugees from other migrants. Many of the service providers interviewed by the author indicated that ethnic Hungarians and Baptist Romanians were persecuted and therefore were bona fide refugees, while all others were fleeing because of deteriorating economic conditions. The majority fleeing Romania were skilled workers and professionals. Very few ethnic Hungarian peasants from Transylvania migrated to Hungary, and neither did the cultural leaders of the Hungarian community in Romania. Additionally, the sudden arrival of asylum seekers and migrants from Romania was followed by a considerable return of ethnic Hungarians and ethnic Romanians to Romania.

    Refugees from the Yugoslav Wars

    In the summer of 1991, war broke out on Hungary’s southern border between Croatia and Serbia. Hungarian border guards faced large groups of civilians fleeing the fighting. Most were from the Baranyi triangle, an area of Croatia near Vukovar. More than 400,000 refugees fled to countries outside the former Yugoslavia’s borders. Germany admitted the largest number, 200,000, followed by Hungary, with 60,000. However, by late 1994 the refugee population registered in Hungary had dwindled to fewer than 8,000 people. The situation changed in 1995. New ethnic cleansing and renewed combat in Bosnia sent more refugees to Hungary in the spring and summer of 1995, and the Hungarian government reopened a refugee camp that had been long closed.

    The total number of refugees registered in Hungary between 1988 and 1995 reached more than 130,000 people and transformed the country from a refugee-producing country to a refugee-receiving country. However, up until the 2015-16 European refugee and migrant crisis, 75 percent of immigrants and refugees who entered the country post-1988 were ethnic Hungarians. This phenomenon has significantly influenced the development of Hungarian refugee law and policy.

    Refugee and Asylum Law since 1989

    The 1951 Geneva Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees constitutes the foundation of Hungarian refugee law. Hungary became a party to the Refugee Convention in early 1989—the first East bloc country to do so—and it also ratified the 1967 Protocol. Although its accession to the Refugee Convention signaled that Hungary was willing to accept the international definition of refugee, Hungary conditioned its ratification on a narrow definition of those who qualify as refugees, recognizing only those who fear persecution in Europe. According to Maryellen Fullerton, “known as the geographic reservation, this provision allows Hungary to limit its obligations under the Convention to a small (and totally European) subset of all the refugees in the world.”

    Refugees who came to Hungary in the late 1980s and in the 1990s entered a country “with an undeveloped refugee policy and a patchwork of legislation and government decrees concerning refugees and migrants,” according to Fullerton. Legal scholars indicate that the government’s attempt to establish a modern refugee system was affected by a powerful preference for protecting refugees of Hungarian ancestry. This preference has permeated both existing law and the administration of the refugee system, resulting in a de facto law of return. While there is nothing intrinsically wrong with wanting to protect fellow co-ethnics—many countries, including Israel, Germany, France, and Poland, among others, have similar laws—what seems objectionable is the desire to accomplish this goal by misusing the refugee process. Ethnic Hungarians who entered Hungary seeking refuge were not only channeled into the refugee system but were also eligible for Hungarian citizenship within one year, and all the rights that citizenship accords, while others who needed refuge were mainly provided temporary protection status. They received food, shelter, and other necessities, although in recent years these too are becoming scarce, but they lacked any substantial legal protection.

    Since joining the European Union in 2004, Hungary has broadly transposed the relevant EU asylum-related directives into national legislation. In June 2007, the Law on Asylum was adopted and the Office of Immigration and Nationality became responsible for asylum and statelessness determination procedures, the provision of reception services, and (very) limited integration services to asylum seekers and refugees, respectively. Three years later, in December 2010, amendments to the legislation relevant to asylum seekers and refugees were enacted. The maximum length of administrative detention from six to 12 months and the detention of up to 30 days of families with children were introduced. While the minimum standards of refugee protection were implemented—at least on paper in the early 2000s—xenophobic attitudes towards refugees, especially Muslims, are on the rise and the protection for asylum seekers and refugees is virtually nonexistent. At the same time, support for ethnic Hungarian refugees such as those from Venezuela, is flourishing.

    Weaponizing Xenophobia: No to Muslim Refugees

    During the 2015-16 European migrant and refugee crisis, the European Union asked Hungary to find homes for 1,294 refugees. Rather than accepting the EU decision, the Hungarian government spent approximately 28 million euros on a xenophobic anti-immigrant campaign. The government called on voters to defend Christian values and Hungarian national identity in order to stop Hungary from becoming a breeding ground for terrorism. The fear that Muslim women will bear many children and the local population will be outnumbered, somehow diluted or “discolored” by Muslims and multiculturalism was palpable in pro-government media. By the end of 2015, a total of 391,384 refugees and asylum seekers entered Hungary through its southern border, most intent on transiting the country to get elsewhere in Europe. This means that the government spent around 70 euros per refugee on a campaign of intolerance, in a country where the monthly welfare check is around the same amount. Undoubtedly this amount could have been used more effectively either to provide transitional assistance to refugees or to facilitate integration of asylum seekers who wanted to settle in Hungary. Attracting migrants to stay would been in line with Fidesz’s strategic goal to stop the long-declining Hungarian birth rate and the aging of the Hungarian society.

    Instead, Hungary decided to go a step further and in September 2015 amended its Criminal Code to make unauthorized crossing of the border closure (fence), damaging the border closure, and obstruction of the construction works related to the border closure punishable by three to ten years imprisonment. The Act on Criminal Proceedings was also amended with a new fast-track provision to bring the defendant to trial within 15 days after interrogation, or within eight days if caught in flagrante. With these new provisions, the Hungarian government declared a “state of crisis due to mass migration,” during which these criminal proceedings are conducted prior to all other cases. Between September 2015 and March 2016, 2,353 people were convicted of unauthorized border crossing. These people generally remained in immigration detention pending removal to Serbia, which Hungary deemed a safe country to which asylum seekers could return. HHC argued that Serbia could not be regarded as safe third country as it recognized virtually no asylum seekers. Applications for a stay of proceedings referring to the nonpenalization principle of the 1951 Convention were systematically dismissed on the grounds that “eligibility for international protection was not a relevant issue to criminal liability.” In order to gain the public’s support for criminalizing migration and rejecting the European Union’s request to admit a few hundred refugees, the Hungarian government organized a national referendum.

    The Referendum

    On October 2, 2016, the citizens of Hungary were asked a simple question: “Do you want the European Union to prescribe the mandatory settlement of non-Hungarian citizens in Hungary without the consent of the National Assembly?”

    Voter turnout was only 39 percent, far short of the 50 percent participation required to make the referendum valid under Hungarian law. Never one to let facts get in the way of politics, Orbán, whose eurosceptic Fidesz party has more support than all opposition parties combined, said in a televised speech:

    “The European Union’s proposal is to let the migrants in and distribute them in mandatory fashion among the Member States and for Brussels to decide about this distribution. Hungarians today considered this proposal and they rejected it. Hungarians decided that only we Hungarians can decide with whom we want to live. The question was ‘Brussels or Budapest’ and we decided this issue is exclusively the competence of Budapest.”

    Orbán decided that the 3.3 million Hungarians who voted “no” in the referendum spoke for all 10 million Hungarians. After his speech, there were fireworks over the Danube river in the colors of the Hungarian flag.

    In order to prevent the European Union from sending refugees to Hungary, Orbán proposed a constitutional amendment to reflect “the will of the people.” It was presented to the Parliament on October 10, 2016, but the bill was rejected by a narrow margin. The far-right Jobbik party, which contends that some of the new arrivals pose a national security threat, sealed the bill’s rejection by boycotting the vote. However, it held out a lifeline to Orbán by indicating that it would support the ban if Orbán scrapped a separate investor visa scheme under which foreigners could effectively buy the right to live in Hungary (and move freely within the Schengen area) in exchange for buying at least 300,000 euros in government bonds with a five-year maturity. Some 10,000 Chinese utilized this scheme, at this writing, to move to Hungary, as did smaller numbers of affluent investors from Russia and the Middle East.

    The Orbán government feared that the referendum alone would not deter potential asylum seekers from trying to enter Hungary. In order to ensure that the situation from the summer of 2015 would not be repeated, the government begun to further strengthen the borders and to close existing refugee camps.

    Border Hunters

    In 2016, the Hungarian police started recruiting 3,000 “border hunters” to join some 10,000 police and soldiers patrolling a 100-mile-long, four-meter-high, razor-wire-topped fence erected on Hungary’s southern borders with Serbia and Croatia to keep refugees out. The recruitment posts were scattered all over Budapest, including the Keleti railway station that became a de facto refugee camp for tens of thousands of people fleeing violence in the Middle East in 2015. Today, the thousands of police and border hunters deal with fewer than 200 refugees who reach Hungary’s southern border with Serbia every day.

    The border hunters must have a high school diploma and receive six months of training. They earn approximately HUF 200,000 (US $709) a month, and receive other perks: housing and clothing allowances, and discount on travel and cell phones. During a recruiting fair in early October 2016, a pack of teenagers ogled a display of machine guns, batons, and riot gear. A glossy flier included a picture of patrols in 4x4s, advanced equipment to detect body heat, night-vision goggles, and migrant-sniffing dogs.

    At a swearing-in ceremony in Budapest for border hunters in spring 2017, Orbán said Hungary had to act to defend itself. The storm has not died, it has only subsided temporarily, he said. There are still millions waiting to set out on their journey in the hope of a better life (in Europe).

    Refugee Camp Closures

    Erecting fences and recruiting border hunters to keep refugees out is one strategy; closing existing refugee camps is another. Beginning in December 2016, Orbán moved to close most refugee camps. The camp in Bicske operated as a refugee facility for more than two decades. In the little museum established by refugees on the premises of the reception center one could see artifacts, coins, and paintings from many parts of the world: several countries in Africa, the Middle East, Bosnia, Kosovo, and Afghanistan, to name a few. However, in December 2016, the camp was shut down as part of the wave of closures. When the author visited the camp a few days before it closed, 75 individuals, hailing from Cuba, Nigeria, Cameroon, Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghanistan, lived there.

    At the time of the author’s visit, Bicske, which can house as many as 460 refugees, was operating well below capacity. The number of asylum applicants also decreased dramatically. According to HHC data, in October 2016, 1,198 refugees registered for asylum in Hungary compared with 5,812 in April 2016. As of October 2016, there were 529 asylum seekers staying in Hungarian refugee reception facilities: 318 at open reception centers such as Bicske and 211 in detention centers.

    The refugees who the author spoke with, including a couple from Nigeria and a young family from Cuba among others, were no terrorists. Jose and his family fled persecution in Cuba in hopes of reuniting with his elderly mother, who had received permission to stay in Budapest a couple of years earlier. Jose is a computer programmer and said he was confident that he would have no problem finding a job. In addition to his native Spanish, he speaks English, and was also learning Hungarian. The Nigerian couple fled northern Nigeria when Boko Haram killed several members of their family. They told the author mean no harm to anybody; all they want is to live in peace.

    When the camp in Bicske closed, the refugees were relocated to Kiskunhalas, a remote camp in southern Hungary, some 2 ½ hours by train from Budapest. The Bicske camp’s location offered its residents opportunities to access a variety of educational and recreational activities that helped them adjust to life in Hungary. Some refugees commuted to Budapest to attend classes at the Central European University (CEU) as well as language courses provided by nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). Bicske residents often attended events and met with Hungarian mentors from groups such as Artemisszió, a multicultural foundation, and MigSzol, a migrant advocacy group. Christian refugees were bused to an American church each Sunday morning. Moving the residents to Kiskunhalas has deprived them of these opportunities. The Hungarian government offers very few resources to refugees, both to those in reception facilities awaiting decisions on their cases and those who have received asylum, so it is clear that access to the civil-society organizations helping refugees prepare for their new lives is important.

    Magyar abszurd: Assistance to Venezuelan Refugees of Hungarian Ancestry

    While third-country nationals—asylum seekers or labor migrants—receive virtually no assistance from the government, ethnic Hungarians from faraway places such as Venezuela continue to enjoy a warm welcome as well as financial assistance and access to programs aimed at integrating them speedily.

    Recently, Hungary accepted 300 refugees from Venezuela. The Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta led the resettlement effort. The refugees must prove some level of Hungarian ancestry in order to qualify for the resettlement scheme. About 5,000 Hungarians emigrated to Venezuela in the 20th century, mostly after World War II and in 1956.

    By Hungarian law, everyone who can prove Hungarian ancestry is entitled to citizenship. As Edit Frenyó, a Hungarian legal scholar, said, “Of course process is key, meaning political and administrative will are needed for successful naturalization.” According to media reports, the Venezuelan refugees are receiving free airfare, residency and work permits, temporary housing, job placement, and English and Hungarian language courses.

    Apparently, the refugees have been directed not to talk about their reception, perhaps in an effort to bolster the official narrative: an ethnonational story of homecoming, in which they are presented as Hungarians, not refugees or migrants. As Gergely Gulyás, Chancellor of the Republic of Hungary, declared, “We are talking about Hungarians; Hungarians are not considered migrants.” Frenyó posits that the Hungarian government must present the refugees as Hungarians seeking to come home to avert political backlash and to make sure the controversial immigration tax law is not levied on the Malta Order.

    Anti-Refugee Policy and the Role of Civil Society: Views on the Ground

    In contradiction to the government’s anti-refugee policies of recent years, civil-society organizations and civilians offered assistance to refugees who descended on the Keleti railway station in summer 2015. As Migration Aid volunteers recount, volunteers brought toys and sweets for the refugee children and turned the station into a playground during the afternoons. However, when Migration Aid volunteers started to use chalk to draw colorful pictures on the asphalt as a creative means to help children deal with their trauma, the Hungarian police reminded the volunteers that the children could be made liable for the “violation of public order.”

    In contrast to civil society’s engagement with children, the Hungarian government tried to undermine and limit public sympathy towards refugees. Hungarian state television employees were told not to broadcast images of refugee children. Ultimately, the task of visually capturing the everyday life of refugee families and their children, as the only means to bridge the distance between the refugees and the receiving societies, was left to volunteers and Facebook activists, such as the photo blog Budapest Seen. Budapest Seen captured activities at the train station, at the Slovenian and Serbian border, and elsewhere in the country, where both NGO workers and regular citizens were providing much needed water, food, sanitary napkins for women, diapers for babies, and medical assistance.

    Volunteers came in droves also in Debrecen, among them Aida el-Seaghi, half Yemeni and half Hungarian medical doctor, and Christina, a trained psychotherapist, and several dozen others who communicated and organized assistance to needy refugees through a private Facebook page, MigAid 2015.

    There were many other volunteer and civil-society groups, both in Budapest and Debrecen, who came to aid refugees in 2015. Among them, MigSzol, a group of students at the Central European University (CEU), Menedék (Hungarian Association for Migrants), established in January 1995 at the height of the Balkan wars, HHC, Adventist Development and Relief Agency, and several others.

    At the time of writing, many of these organizations are no longer operational as a result of the “Stop Soros” bill, passed in June 2018, which criminalizes assistance to irregular migrants, among other things. However, organizations such as the HHC continue to provide legal aid to migrants and refugees. Many volunteers who worked with refugees in 2015 continue their volunteer activities, but in the absence of refugees in Hungary focused their efforts on the Roma or the homeless. In interviews the author conducted in spring 2019, they expressed that they stand ready should another group of asylum seekers arrive in Hungary.

    Acknowledgments

    This article was prepared using funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Program under grant agreement No. 770330.

    Sources

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    Bursten, Martin A. 1958. Escape from Fear. Syracuse, New York: Syracuse University Press.

    Frank, Tibor. 2016. Migration in Hungarian History. Part I. Hungarian Review 7 (1). Available online.

    Fullerton, Maryellen. 1996. Hungary, Refugees, and the Law of Return. International Journal of Refugee Law 8 (4): 499-531.

    Goździak, Elżbieta M. 1989. From East to East: Refugees from Rumania in Hungary. Migration World 5: 7-9.

    Goździak, Elżbieta M. and Péter Márton. 2018. Where the Wild Things Are: Fear of Islam and the Anti-Refugee Rhetoric in Hungary and in Poland. Central and Eastern European Migration Review, 7 (2): 125-51. Available online.

    Gyollai, Daniel and Anthony Amatrudo. 2019. Controlling Irregular Migration: International Human Rights Standards and the Hungarian Legal Framework. European Journal of Criminology 16 (4): 432-51.

    Hungarian Central Statistical Office. 2019. Asylum Seekers in Hungary and Persons Granted International Protection Status (2000-18). Updated March 8, 2019. Available online.

    Juhász, Judit. 2003. Hungary: Transit Country Between East and West. Migration Information Source, November 1, 2003. Available online.

    Kamm, Henry. 1992. Yugoslav Refugee Crisis Europe’s Worst Since 40s. The New York Times, July 24, 1992. Available online.

    Komócsin, Sándor. 2019. Magyar abszurd: menekülteket segít a kormány, de titkolja (Hungarian Absurd: The Government is Helping Refugees, but They Are Hiding). Napi.hu February 21, 2019. Available online.

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    Pastor, Peter. 2016. The American Reception and Settlement of Hungarian Refugees in 1956-57. Hungarian Cultural Studies 9: 196-205.

    Patai, Raphael. 1996. The Jews of Hungary: History, Culture, Psychology. Detroit, Michigan: Wayne State University Press.

    Puskás, Julianna. 2000. Ties That Bind, Ties That Divide: 100 Years of Hungarian Experience in the United States. New York: Holmes and Meier.

    Simon, Zoltan. 2018. Hungary Should Repeal Immigration Tax, Rights Organizations Say. Bloomberg, December 14, 2018. Available online.

    Szakacs, Gergely. 2019. Hungary Accepts Hundreds of Refugees from Venezuela: Report. U.S. News & World Report. February 21, 2019. Available online.

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    UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). 2016. Hungary as a Country of Asylum. Observations on Restrictive Legal Measures and Subsequent Practice Implemented between July 2015 and March 2016. UNHCR, Geneva, May 2016. Available online.

    Wallis, Emma. 2019. Starving in Hungary’s Transit Zones. InfoMigrants, April 23, 2019. Available online.

    Wikimedia Commons. 2009. Kingdom of Hungary, 1370-87. Accessed October 8, 2019. Available online.

    Zsoldos, Attila. 2015. Kóborlás az Árpád-kori Magyarországon (Roaming in Hungary in the Age of Árpád). In … in nostra lingua Hringe nominant. Tanulmányok Szentpéteri József 60. születésnapja tiszteletére, eds. Csilla Balogh, et al. Budapest: Kecskeméti Katona József Múzeum.

    https://www.migrationpolicy.org/article/orban-reshapes-migration-policy-hungary

    #réfugiés #asile #migrations #Hongrie #xénophobie #anti-réfugiés #islamophobie #société_civile #solidarité #zones_de_transit #nourriture #camps_de_réfugiés #peur #histoire #milices #frontières #fermeture_des_frontières

    ping @isskein

  • #Zoltan_Kovacs sur twitter

    Hungary’s southern border fence has contributed immensely to reducing migration on the Western Balkans migration route since September 2015. Yet, @EU_Commission refuses to cover a fair portion of our extra defense costs. Here’s some data from @Frontex

    https://twitter.com/zoltanspox/status/1168862668352040960
    #Hongrie

    Zoltán Kovács (born 1969) is a Hungarian historian and politician, who currently serves as Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Relations in the Second Cabinet of Viktor Orbán.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zolt%C3%A1n_Kov%C3%A1cs_(politician,_1969)

    #murs #propagande #Hongrie #frontières #asile #migrations #réfugiés

    Les #statistiques ne disent pas tout...

    Ma réponse :

    Great! People who are by law allowed to ask for #asylum are now blocked in inhumane conditions in #Croatia & #Bosnia... or try to find new, more dangerous ways to cross the #borders.
    #WallsDontWork, #walls are never the solution!

    https://twitter.com/CDB_77/status/1169127329924288513

    ping @reka

  • Border Violence Monitoring Network - Report July 2019

    The Border Violence Monitoring Network just published a common report summarizing current developments in pushbacks and police violence in the Western Balkans, mainly in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro and along the Serbian borders with Croatia and Hungary.

    Due tu a new cooperation with the Thessaloniki-based organisation Mobile Info Team, we were also able to touch on the Status quo of pushbacks from and to Greece.

    This report analyzes, among other things:

    – BiH politicians’ rhetoric on Croatian push-backs
    – Whistleblowers increasing pressure on Croatian authorities
    – Frontex presence in Hungarian push-backs to Serbia
    – The use of k9 units in the apprehension of transit groups in Slovenia
    – The spatial dispersion of push-backs in the Una-Sana Canton

    Competing narratives around the legality of pushbacks have emerged, muddying the waters. This has become especially clear as Croatian president Grabar-Kitarovic admitted that pushbacks were carried out legally, which is contradictory to begin with, and that “of course […] a little violence is used.” Croatia’s tactic of de facto condoning illegal pushbacks is similar to Hungary’s strategy to legalize these operations domestically, even though they violate international and EU law. On the other side of the debate, a whistleblower from the Croatian police described a culture of secrecy and institutional hurdles, which prevent legal and organizational challenges to the practice. The role of the EU in this debate remains critical. However, despite paying lip service to the EU’s value, Brussels’ continues to shoulder the bill for a substantial part of the frontier states’ border operations.

    https://www.borderviolence.eu/wp-content/uploads/July-2019-Final-Report.pdf

    #frontières #violence #push-back #refoulement #route_des_Balkans #Frontex #Subotica #Bosnie-Herzégovine #Croatie #Italie #Serbie #Hongrie #rapport

    • Croatia Is Abusing Migrants While the EU Turns a Blind Eye

      The evidence of Croatian police violence toward migrants is overwhelming, but Brussels continues to praise and fund Zagreb for patrolling the European Union’s longest external land border.

      BIHAC, Bosnia and Herzegovina—Cocooned in a mud-spattered blanket, thousands of euros in debt, and with a body battered and bruised, Faisal Abas has reached the end of the line, geographically and spiritually. A year after leaving Pakistan to seek greener pastures in Europe, his dreams have died in a rain-sodden landfill site in northern Bosnia. His latest violent expulsion from Croatia was the final straw.

      “We were just a few kilometers over the border when we were caught on the mountainside. They wore black uniforms and balaclavas and beat us one by one with steel sticks,” he recalled. “I dropped to the ground and they kicked me in the belly. Now, I can’t walk.”

      Faisal rolled up his trousers to reveal several purple bruises snaking up his shins and thighs. He has begun seeking information on how to repatriate himself. “If I die here, then who will help my family back home?” he said.

      The tented wasteland outside the Bosnian city of Bihac has become a dumping ground for single male migrants that the struggling authorities have no room to accommodate and don’t want hanging around the city. Bhangra music blasts out of a tinny speaker, putrid smoke billows from fires lit inside moldy tents, and men traipse in flip-flops into the surrounding woods to defecate, cut off from any running water or sanitation.

      A former landfill, ringed by land mines from the Yugoslav wars, the hamlet of Vucjak has become the latest squalid purgatory for Europe’s largely forgotten migrant crisis as thousands escaping war and poverty use it as a base camp to cross over the Croatian border—a process wryly nicknamed “the game.”

      The game’s unsuccessful players have dark stories to tell. A young Pakistani named Ajaz recently expelled from Croatia sips soup from a plastic bowl and picks at his split eyebrow. “They told us to undress and we were without shoes, socks, or jackets. They took our money, mobiles and bags with everything inside it, made a fire and burnt them all in front of us. Then they hit me in the eye with a steel stick,” he said. “They beat everyone, they didn’t see us as humans.”

      Mohammad, sitting beside his compatriot, pipes up: “Last week we were with two Arabic girls when the Croatian police caught us. The girls shouted to them ‘sorry, we won’t come back,’ but they didn’t listen, they beat them on their back and chest with sticks.”

      Down the hill in Bihac, in a drafty former refrigerator factory turned refugee facility, a metal container serves as a quarantine area for the infectious and infirm. Mohammad Bilal, a scrawny 16-year-old, lies on a lower bunk with his entire leg draped in flimsy bandage. Three weeks ago, at the cusp of winning the game and crossing into Italy, he was seized in Slovenia and then handed back to Croatia. That’s when the violence began.

      “They drove us in a van to the Bosnian border and took us out one at a time,” he said, describing the Croatian police. “There were eight police, and one by one they beat us, punching, kicking, hitting with steel sticks. They broke my leg.”

      A nearby Bosnian camp guard grimaced and wondered out loud: “Imagine how hard you have to hit someone to break a bone.”

      Among the fluctuating migrant population of 7,000 thought to be in the area, vivid descriptions of violent episodes are being retold every day. The allegations have been mounting over the last two years, since Bosnia became a new branch in the treacherous Balkan migratory route into Europe. Denunciations of Croatian border policy have come from Amnesty International, the Council of Europe, Human Rights Watch, and a United Nations special rapporteur. Officials in Serbia have even alleged “physical and psychological torture” by Croatia’s police forces.

      In November 2018, the Guardian published a video shot by a migrant in which haunting screams can be heard before a group of migrants emerge from the darkness wild-eyed and bloodied. A month later, activists secretly filmed Croatian police marching lines of migrants back into Bosnian territory.

      Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic even appeared to let the cat out of the bag in an interview with the Swiss broadcaster Schweizer Radio und Fernsehen, during which she remarked that “a little bit of force is needed when doing pushbacks.” Despite the videos showing injured migrants, explicit video evidence of Croatian officials carrying out actual beatings has never been seen, and migrants report that one of the first commands by border guards is to surrender mobile phones, which are then either taken or destroyed before a thorough search is performed.

      The abuse appears to be rampant. Both the violence and humiliation—migrants are often forced to undress and walk back across the border to Bosnia half-naked for several hours in freezing temperatures—seem to be used as a deterrent to stop them from returning. And yet the European Union is arguably not only facilitating but rewarding brute force by a member state in the name of protecting its longest land border.

      In December 2018, the European Commission announced that it was awarding 6.8 million euros to Croatia to “strengthen border surveillance and law enforcement capacity,” including a “monitoring mechanism” to ensure that border measures are “proportionate and are in full compliance with fundamental rights and EU asylum laws.”

      According to European Commission sources, a sum of 300,000 euros was earmarked for the mechanism, but they could not assess its outcome until Croatia files a report due in early 2020. Details of oversight remain vague. A spokesperson for the United Nations refugee agency in Croatia told Foreign Policy that the agency has no involvement. The Croatian Law Center, another major nongovernmental organization, also confirmed it has no role in the mechanism. It appears to be little more than a fig leaf.

      https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/12/06/croatia-is-abusing-migrants-while-the-eu-turns-a-blind-eye
      #Slovénie

    • AYS Special 2019/2020: A Year of Violence — Monitoring Pushbacks on the Balkan Route

      In 2019, The Border Violence Monitoring Network (BVMN) shared the voices of thousands of people pushed back from borders on the Balkan Route. Each tells their own tale of illegal, and regularly violent, police actions. Each represents a person denied their fundamental rights, eyewitnesses to EU led reborderization. This article shares just some of the more startling trends which define border management on the eve of 2020, such as the denial of asylum rights, systemic firearms use, water immersion, and dog attacks.

      With a shared database of 648 reports, BVMN is a collaborative project of organisations with the common goal of challenging the illegal pushback regime and holding relevant institutions to account.

      “Pushback” describes the unlegislated expulsion of groups or individuals from one national territory to another, and lies outside the legal framework of “deportations”. On a daily basis, people-on-the-move are subject to these unlawful removals; a violent process championed by EU member states along the Balkan Route. In 2019, BVMN continued to shine a spotlight on these actions, perpetrated in the main part by states such as Croatia, Hungary, and Greece. Supporting actors also included Slovenia and Italy, and non-member states with the aid of Frontex which has seen its remit and funding widened heading into 2020.

      Volunteers and activists worked across the route in 2019 to listen to the voice of people facing these violations, taking interviews in the field and amplifying their calls for justice. Just some of the regular abuses that constitute pushbacks are listed below.
      Guns and Firearm Abuse

      The highest volume of BVMN reported pushbacks were from Croatia, a state which has been acting as a fulcrum of the EU’s external border policy in the West Balkans. It’s approximately 1300 kilometer long border with the non-member states of Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia and Montenegro have been a flashpoint for extremely violent pushbacks. Even in the challenging winter conditions, people make daily attempts to cross through the mountainous landscape of Croatia and are pushed back from the territory by a web of police actors who deny them the proper procedure and use crude physical abuse as a deterrent.

      Of major concern is the huge rise in gun use by Croatian officials against transit populations. In the first ten months of 2019 BVMN recorded 770 people who were pushed back by police officers who used guns to shoot or threaten. In November, shots were fired directly at transit groups, resulting in the near fatal wounding of one man, and causing a puncture wound in the shoulder of another. AYS reported on the shooting of two minors in 2017, showing this isn’t the first time guns were turned on unarmed transit people in Croatia.
      Dog Attacks and K9 Units

      The use of canine units in the apprehension and expulsion of transit groups is also a telling marker of the extreme violence that characterises pushbacks. Since the summer of 2019, a spike in the level of brutal dog attacks, and the presence of K9 units during pushbacks has been noted by BVMN. In a recent case, one man was mauled by a Croatian police dog for ten minutes under the direct guidance of the animals police handlers who laughed and shouted, “good, good”, as it almost severed a major blood vessel in the victim’s leg.

      Fortunately, the man survived, but with permanent injuries that he nurses still today in Bosnia-Herzegovina where he was illegally pushed back, in spite of his request for asylum and urgent physical condition. Sadly this is not an unfamiliar story. Across the route canine units remain a severe threat within pushbacks, as seen in cases recorded from North Macedonia to Greece where a man was severely bitten, or in chain a pushback from Slovenia where 12 unmuzzled police dogs traumatised a large transit group. Dogs as weapons are a timely reminder of the weighting of border policy towards violent aggression, and away from due legal access to asylum and regulated procedure.
      Gatekeeping Asylum Access

      K9 units and guns are ultra-violent policing methods that contribute directly to the blocking of asylum access. In the first eleven months of 2019, over 60% of Croatian pushbacks to Bosnia-Herzegovina saw groups make a verbal request for asylum. Yet in these cases, group members were pushed back from the territory without having their case heard, in direct contravention of European asylum law.

      Croatian authorities, along with a host of other states, have effectively mobilised pushbacks to remove people from their territories irrespective of claims for international protection. A host of actors, such as police officers and translators have warped the conditions for claiming asylum, regularly coercing people to sign removal documents, doctoring the ages of minors, or avoid any processing at all by delivering them to the green border immediately where they are pushed back with violence. Slovenia are also participants in this chain of asylum violation, seen most brutally in a case from July when pepper spray was used to target specifically the people who spoke out asking for asylum.
      Wet Borders: River Pushbacks

      Most pushbacks occur at remote areas of the green border, especially at night, where violence can be applied with effective impunity. A particular feature of police violence on the border is the weaponisation of rivers to abuse groups. Monitoring work from September revealed 50% of direct pushbacks from Croatia involved respondents being forced into rivers or immersed in water. This is accompanied regularly by the stripping of people (often to their underwear) and burning of their possessions. Then, police officer push them into the rivers that mark the boundary with Bosnia-Herzegovina (often the Glina and Korana), putting people at a high risk of drowning and hypothermia.

      A recent case from November combined the use of firearms with this dangerous use of wet borders. A group of Algerians were pushed into a river by Croatian officers who were returning them to Bosnia-Herzegovina.

      The respondent recalled how: “They pushed me into the river and said, ‘Good luck.’”, while the officers fired guns into the air.

      Meanwhile in the Evros region of Greece, the river border is used regularly to pushback people-on-the-move into Turkey. As in Croatia, the incidents often occur at night, and are carried out by officials wearing ski masks/balaclavas. Taken by force, transit groups report being loaded violently onto small boats and ferried across to the Turkish side. This regular and informal system of removal stands out as a common violation across Greece and the Balkan area, and raises major concerns about the associated risks of water immersion given the high levels of drowning which occur in the regions rivers.
      2019 at the EU’s Doorstep

      Border management on the Balkan Route has systematised a level of unacceptable, illegal and near fatal violence.

      The trends noted in 2019 are an astonishing reminder that such boundaries are no longer governed by the rule of law, but characterised almost entirely by the informal use of pushback violations.

      Gun use stands out as the most extreme marker of violence within pushbacks. But the shooting of weapons sits within a whole arsenal of policing methods that also include blunt physical assault, unlawful detention, abuse during transportation, taser misuse and stripping. Though Croatia emerged as a primary actor within BVMN’s dataset, common practive between EU member states were also clear, as across the region: Hungary, Slovenia and Greece continued to target people-on-the-move with a shared set of illegal and violent methods. The new interventions of Frontex outside of EU territory also look to compliment this reborderisation effort, as non-member states in the Western Balkans become integrated into the pushback regime.

      The Border Violence Monitoring Network will continue to elevate the brave voices of those willing to expose these violent institutions. Their stories are a testament to the dire situation at Europe’s borders on the eve of 2020, and accountability will continue to be sought.

      https://medium.com/are-you-syrious/ays-special-2019-2020-a-year-of-violence-monitoring-pushbacks-on-the-balkan-
      #2019 #chiens #armes #armes_à_feu

  • Derrière ses barbelés, la Hongrie célèbre le jour où elle abattait le Rideau de fer
    https://www.mediapart.fr/journal/international/190819/derriere-ses-barbeles-la-hongrie-celebre-le-jour-ou-elle-abattait-le-ridea

    Angela Merkel et Viktor Orbán célèbrent ensemble, ce lundi, le trentième anniversaire du « pique-nique paneuropéen », première brèche dans le Rideau de fer, avant son ouverture totale par la Hongrie puis la chute du mur de Berlin. Mais sur fond de querelle mémorielle et à l’ombre des barbelés érigés en 2015.

    #EUROPE #Angela_Merkel,_Hongrie,_Viktor_Orban,_rideau_de_fer

  • Création de zones frontalières (au lieu de lignes de frontière) en vue de refoulements

    Je viens de lire dans un compte-rendu de réunion qui a eu lieu à Milan en juin 2019, ce commentaire, sur la situation à la #frontière italo-slovène :

    Gianfranco Schiavone :

    «Quello che sicuramente dovrebbe diventare una questione delicata é l’annunciato avvio delle pattuglie italo slovene in frontiera con l’obiettivo dichiarato alla stampa di bloccare gli arrivi. Con riammissione senza formalita’ delle persone irregolari intercettate nella fascia dei 5 km dalla frontiera . Queste sono le dichiarazioni pubbliche di questi giorni»

    Une #zone_frontalière de #5_km dans laquelle ont lieu des #refoulements directs.

    #Italie #Slovénie #frontière_sud-alpine #migrations #réfugiés #asile #frontière_mobile #bande_frontalière #frontières_mobiles

    Ceci me rappelle d’autres cas, en Europe et ailleurs, dans lesquels des procédures semblables (la frontière n’est plus une #ligne, mais une #zone) ont été mises en place, j’essaie de les mettre sur ce fil de discussion.
    Si quelqu’un a d’autres cas à signaler, les contributions sont bienvenues...

    #métaliste

    ping @reka @simplicissimus @karine4 @isskein

    • A la frontière entre franco-italienne :

      Dans un amendement, l’élu a proposé « une zone limitée aux communes limitrophes ou une bande de 10 kms par rapport à la frontière. » Le gouvernement en a accepté le principe, mais « le délimitera de manière précise par décret pour coller à la réalité du terrain. »

      http://alpesdusud.alpes1.com/news/locales/67705/alpes-du-sud-refus-d-entree-pour-les-migrants-vers-une-evolution-
      #France #Italie #frontière_sud-alpine

    • L’article 10 de la loi renforçant la sécurité intérieure et la lutte contre le terrorisme modifie l’article 78-2 du Code de procédure pénale relatif aux contrôles d’identités. Il permet ainsi des contrôles aux frontières pour une durée de douze heures consécutives (contre six auparavant). Il les élargit « aux abords » de 373 gares et dans un rayon de dix kilomètres des ports et aéroports au nombre des points de passage frontaliers. Bien au-delà des simples frontières de l’Hexagone, c’est une partie importante du territoire français qui est ainsi couvert, dont des villes entières comme Paris, Lyon, Toulouse, Marseille, etc.

      source, p.25 : https://www.lacimade.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/La_Cimade_Schengen_Frontieres.pdf
      #France

    • This month saw the introduction of joint Slovenian and Italian police patrols on their mutual border, raising concerns about the retrenchment of national boundaries contra the Schengen Agreement. The collaboration between authorities, due to be implemented until the end of September, mobilises four joint operations per week, with respective police forces able to enter 10km into the territory of their neighboring state in order to apprehend migrants. Mixed operations by member states signifies a growing trend towards the securitization of the EU’s internal borders, and in this case a tightening of controls on the departure point from the West Balkan route.

      The patrols aim at stemming the transit of migrants from the western Slovenian regions of #Goriška and #Obalno-kraška, into the eastern region of Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy. Given the extensive pushback apparatus being employed by Slovenian and Croatian officials, arrival in Italy has often been the first place where persons-in-transit can apply for international protection without the threat of summary removal. However, these developments in cross border patrols highlight a growing effort on the part of the Italian government to prevent people seeking sanctuary on its territory.

      (p.15-16)

      https://www.borderviolence.eu/wp-content/uploads/July-2019-Final-Report.pdf
      #Italie #Slovénie #10_km

    • Kuster Backs Bill To Reduce 100-Mile Zone for Border Patrol Checkpoints

      Congresswoman Ann McLane Kuster is cosponsoring legislation to reduce border zones from 100 to 25 miles from the border (https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/3852?q=%7B%22search%22%3A%5B%22border+zone%22%5D%7D&s=1&r=1), within which U.S. Customs and Border Patrol can set up immigration checkpoints.

      Congressman Peter Welch of Vermont is the prime sponsor of the legislation.

      Kuster was stopped at one such immigration checkpoint in June of this year. The checkpoint, on I-93 in Woodstock, around 90 miles from the border, resulted in 29 tickets for alleged immigration violations.

      The violations were for legal visitors who did not have appropriate paperwork on them, according to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

      According to a map from CityLabs, the entire state of New Hampshire falls within a border zone (which includes coastal borders).

      “I think it has a chilling effect,” says Kuster. “It’s not the free and open America that we know.”

      Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy introduced a similar bill to the Senate.

      https://www.nhpr.org/post/kuster-backs-bill-reduce-100-mile-zone-border-patrol-checkpoints#stream/0
      #USA #Etats-Unis

    • Inside the Massive U.S. ’Border Zone’

      All of Michigan, D.C., and a large chunk of Pennsylvania are part of the area where Border Patrol has expanded search and seizure rights. Here’s what it means to live or travel there.

      https://www.citylab.com/equity/2018/05/who-lives-in-border-patrols-100-mile-zone-probably-you-mapped/558275
      #cartographie #visualisation
      #100-Mile_Zone

      déjà signalé sur seenthis par @reka en 2018 :
      https://seenthis.net/messages/727225

    • En #Hongrie, les pushbacks, largement pratiqués depuis des années, ont été légalisés en mars 2017 par de nouvelles dispositions permettant aux forces de l’ordre de refouler automatiquement toute personne interpellée sur le territoire hongrois et considérée en situation irrégulière. Ces personnes sont ramenées jusqu’à la clôture et renvoyées de l’autre côté. Si elles manifestent leur volonté de demander l’asile, on leur signifie qu’elles doivent repartir en Serbie et passer par les zones de transit. Pourtant, se trouvant géographiquement et juridiquement en Hongrie (le mur étant situé à 1,5 mètre à l’intérieur du tracé officiel de la frontière), les autorités ont l’obligation de prendre en compte ces demandes d’asile en vertu des conventions européennes et des textes internationaux dont la Hongrie est signataire.

      Tiré du rapport de La Cimade (2018), pp.37-38 :
      https://www.lacimade.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/La_Cimade_Schengen_Frontieres.pdf

    • Le zone di transito e di frontiera – commento dell’ASGI al decreto del Ministero dell’Interno del 5 agosto 2019

      Il 7 settembre 2009 sulla Gazzetta Ufficiale n. 210 (https://www.gazzettaufficiale.it/eli/id/2019/09/07/19A05525/sg) è stato pubblicato il decreto del Ministero dell’Interno del 5 agosto 2019 che individua le zone di transito e di frontiera dove potrà trovare applicazione la procedura accelerata per l’esame nel merito delle domande di protezione internazionale e istituisce due nuove sezioni delle Commissioni territoriali , come previsto dall’art. 28 bis co. 1 quater del D.lgs. n. 25/2008, introdotto dal d.l. n. 113/2018.

      Le zone di frontiera o di transito sono individuate in quelle esistenti nelle seguenti province:

      –Trieste e Gorizia;

      –Crotone, Cosenza, Matera, Taranto, Lecce e Brindisi;

      –Caltanissetta, Ragusa, Siracusa, Catania, Messina;

      –Trapani, Agrigento;

      –Città metropolitana di Cagliari e Sud Sardegna.

      Il decreto ministeriale istituisce altresì due nuove sezioni , Matera e Ragusa, le quali operano rispettivamente nella commissione territoriale per il riconoscimento dello status di rifugiato di Bari, per la zona di frontiera di Matera, e nella commissione territoriale di Siracusa, per la zona di frontiera di Ragusa.

      Nel commento qui pubblicato ASGI sottolinea come le nuove disposizioni paiono contrastare con le norme dell’Unione Europea perché si riferiscono in modo assolutamente generico alle “zone di transito o di frontiera individuate in quelle esistenti nelle province” e non ad aree delimitate, quali ad esempio i porti o le aree aeroportuali o altri luoghi coincidenti con frontiere fisiche con Paesi terzi non appartenenti all’Unione europea.

      ASGI evidenzia come “l’applicazione delle procedure accelerate alle domande presentate nelle zone individuate nel decreto ministeriale comporta una restrizione dell’effettivo esercizio dei diritti di cui ogni straniero è titolare allorché manifesta la volontà di presentare la domanda di asilo e una conseguente contrazione del diritto di difesa, in ragione del dimezzamento dei termini di impugnazione e dell’assenza di un effetto sospensivo automatico derivante dalla proposizione del ricorso previsti, in modo differente per le varie ipotesi specifiche, dall’art. 35 bis D. Lgs. 25/08”.

      A tal fine ASGI ricorda che:

      – ai cittadini di Paesi terzi o apolidi tenuti in centri di trattenimento o presenti ai valichi di frontiera, comprese le zone di transito alla frontiere esterne, che desiderino presentare una domanda di protezione internazionale, gli Stati membri devono garantire l’informazione, anche sull’accesso procedura per il riconoscimento della protezione internazionale, adeguati servizi di interpretariato,
      nonché l’effettivo accesso a tali aree alle organizzazioni e alle persone che prestano consulenza e assistenza ai richiedenti asilo (art. 8 Direttiva 2013/32/UE);

      – gli Stati membri devono provvedere affinché l’avvocato o altro consulente legale che assiste o rappresenta un richiedente possa accedere alle aree chiuse, quali i centri di trattenimento e le zone di transito (art. 23 par. 2) e analoga possibilità deve essere garantita all’UNHCR (art. 29, par. 1);

      – ai sensi dell’art. 46 par. 1 il richiedente ha diritto a un ricorso effettivo dinanzi a un giudice anche nel caso in cui la decisione sulla domanda di protezione internazionale venga presa in frontiera o nelle zone di transito.

      E’ evidente, conclude ASGI nel commento al Decreto, che vi sia il rischio che lo straniero espulso o respinto e che abbia presentato domanda di protezione internazionale dopo l’espulsione o il respingimento in una zona di frontiera tra quelle indicate nel nuovo decreto ministeriale si veda esaminata la sua domanda in modo sommario mentre è trattenuto in condizioni e luoghi imprecisati e inaccessibili di fatto a difensori e organizzazioni di tutela dei diritti.

      Occorre invece ribadire che la presentazione della domanda di protezione internazionale in frontiera riguarderà spesso persone rese ulteriormente vulnerabili dalle condizioni traumatiche del viaggio ed alle quali andrà perciò in ogni caso garantito un esame adeguato della domanda di protezione internazionale e l’applicazione delle garanzie e dei diritti previsti a tutela dei richiedenti protezione internazionale dalle disposizioni nazionali e dell’Unione Europea.

      https://www.asgi.it/asilo-e-protezione-internazionale/asilo-zone-transito-frontiera

    • La loi renforçant la lutte contre le terrorisme étend à nouveau les contrôles d’identités frontaliers

      Avant l’entrée en vigueur de la loi du 30 octobre 2017, les #contrôles_frontaliers étaient autorisés dans les espaces publics des #gares, #ports et #aéroports ouverts au trafic international (désignés par un arrêté ministériel) et dans une zone située entre la frontière terrestre et une ligne tracée de 20 kilomètres en deçà. Le législateur avait étendu les zones frontalières, notamment dans les territoires ultra-marins (où la convention de Schengen n’est pourtant pas applicable).

      https://www.editions-legislatives.fr/actualite/la-loi-renforcant-la-lutte-contre-le-terrorisme-etend-a-nouvea
      #France #20_km #20_kilomètres #espace_public #gares_internationales

    • The Grand Chamber Judgment in Ilias and Ahmed v Hungary: Immigration Detention and how the Ground beneath our Feet Continues to Erode

      The ECtHR has been for a long time criticized for its approach to immigration detention that diverts from the generally applicable principles to deprivation of liberty in other contexts. As Cathryn Costello has observed in her article Immigration Detention: The Ground beneath our Feet, a major weakness in the Court’s approach has been the failure to scrutinize the necessity of immigration detention under Article 5(1)(f) of the ECHR. The Grand Chamber judgment in Ilias and Ahmed v Hungary delivered on 21 November 2019 has further eroded the protection extended to asylum-seekers under the Convention to the point that restrictions imposed upon asylum-seekers might not even be qualified as deprivation of liberty worthy of the protection of Article 5. The Grand Chamber overruled on this point the unanimously adopted Chamber judgment that found that the holding of asylum-seekers in the ‘transit zone’ between Hungary and Serbia actually amounts to deprivation of liberty.

      In this blog, I will briefly describe the facts of the case, the findings of the Grand Chamber under Article 3 ECHR that was also invoked by the applicants and then I will focus on the reasoning as to the applicability of Article 5.

      The case concerned two Bangladeshi nationals who transited through Greece, the Republic of Northern Macedonia (as it is now known) and Serbia before reaching Hungary, where they immediately applied for asylum. They found themselves in the transit zone on the land border between Hungary and Serbia, where they were held for 23 days pending the examination of their asylum applications. The applications were rejected on the same day on the ground that the applicants had transited through Serbia that, according to Hungary, was a safe third country. The rejections were confirmed on appeal, an order for their expulsion was issued, the applicants were escorted out of the transit zone and they crossed back into Serbia.

      Procedural Breach of Article 3 ECHR

      The Grand Chamber established that Hungary ‘failed to discharge its procedural obligation under Article 3 of the Convention to assess the risks of treatment contrary to that provision before removing the applicants from Hungary’ to Serbia (para 163). No finding was made on the issue as to whether Hungary was substantively in breach of the right not to be subjected to refoulement given the conditions in Serbia and the deficiencies in the Serbian asylum procedures that might lead to chain refoulement. This omission follows a trend in the Court’s reasoning that can be described as a procedural turn: focus on the quality of the national decision making processes rather than on the substantive accuracy of the decisions taken at national level.[1] This omission, however, had important consequences for the application of Article 5 to the applicants’ case, the most controversial aspect in the Grand Chamber’s reasoning.

      The Chamber’s reasoning under Article 5 ECHR

      On this aspect, the Grand Chamber departed from the Chamber’s conclusion that the applicants were deprived of their liberty. The fundamental question here is whether ‘the stay’ (Hungary used the term ‘accommodation’) of asylum-seekers in the ‘transit zone’ with an exit door open to Serbia, but closed to Hungary, amounts to deprivation of liberty (i.e. detention) in the sense of Article 5 ECHR. Asylum seekers in the transit zone were denied access to the Hungarian territory,[2] but they could leave to Serbia. This creates a complex intertwinement between deprivation of liberty (Article 5(1)(f)) normally understood as not allowing somebody to leave a place, on the one hand, and not allowing somebody to enter a place. Entering a State can be very relevant from the perspective of the obligation upon this State not to refoule, which necessitates a procedure for determining whether there is a risk of refoulement.

      In its judgment from 14 March 2017 the Chamber unanimously answered in positive: by holding them in the transit zone, Hungary deprived the applicants from their liberty, which was in violation of Article 5(1)(f) since this measures had no legal basis in the national law. The Chamber clarified that‘[t]he mere fact that it was possible for them to leave voluntarily returning to Serbia which never consented to their readmission cannot rule out an infringement of the right to liberty.’ (para 55). In this way the Chamber reaffirmed the reasoning in Amuur v France where the Court observed ‘[…] this possibility [to leave voluntary the country] becomes theoretical if no other country offering protection comparable to the protection they expect to find in the country where they are seeking asylum is inclined or prepared to take them in.’ (para 48) It follows that although the transit zone at the French airport was, as France argued, “open to the outside”, the applicants were still considered as having been detained since this ‘outside’ did not offer a level of protection comparable to the one in France.

      The Chamber followed this reasoning from Amuur v France in Ilias and Ahmed v Hungary, which led to the recognition that ‘[…] the applicants could not have left the transit zone in the direction of Serbia without unwanted and grave consequences, that is, without forfeiting their asylum claims and running the risk of refoulement’ (para 55). The Chamber also added that ‘To hold otherwise would void the protection afforded by Article 5 of the Convention by compelling the applicants to choose between liberty and the pursuit of a procedure ultimately aimed to shelter them from the risk of exposure to treatment in breach of Article 3 of the Convention.’ (para 56)

      The ‘practical and realistic’ approach of the Grand Chamber under Article 5 ECHR

      The Grand Chamber in its reasoning broke precisely this linkage between the applicability of Article 5 (the qualification of a treatment as deprivation of liberty) and Article 3 (protection from refoulement). The Grand Chamber performed the following important moves to achieve this. First, it stated that ‘its approach should be practical and realistic, having regard to the present-day conditions and challenges’, which implied that States were not only entitled to control their borders, but also ‘to take measures against foreigners circumventing restrictions on immigration.’ (para 213). With Ilias and Ahmed v Hungary the Court has thus added another nuance to its well-established point of departure in cases dealing with migrants. This point of departure has been that States are entitled, subject to their treaty obligations, to control their borders. The new addition introduced with Ilias and Ahmed v Hungary and also repeated in Z.A. and Others v Russia, a Grand Chamber judgment issued on the same day, concerns States’ right to prevent ‘foreigners circumventing restrictions on immigration’. This addition, however, does not seem appropriate given that the applicants themselves in Ilias and Ahmed v Hungary never circumvented any immigration control restrictions. They applied immediately for asylum.

      This ‘practical and realistic approach’ also implied an endorsement of the representation of the situation as one of ‘crisis’:[3] ‘the Court observes that the Hungarian authorities were in conditions of a mass influx of asylum-seekers and migrants at the border, which necessitated rapidly putting in place measures to deal with what was clearly a crisis situation.’ (para 228) In the same paragraph, the Grand Chamber went on to almost praise Hungary for having processed the applicants’ claims so fast event though it was ‘a crisis’: ‘Despite the ensuring very significant difficulties, the applicants’ asylum claims and their judicial appeals were examined within three weeks and two days.’ It appears as if the Grand Chamber at this stage had already forgotten its findings made earlier in the judgment under Article 3 that the national procedure for examining the applicants’ claims was deficient. This ultimately gave the basis for the Grand Chamber to find a violation of Article 3.

      The distinction based on how asylum-seekers arrive and the type of border they find themselves at

      The second move performed by the Grand Chamber implied the introduction of a distinction between ‘staying at airport transit zones’ (para 214) and at reception centers located on islands (para 216), on the one hand, and a transit zone located on the land border between two Council of Europe Member States (para 219). This meant, as the Court reasoned, that the applicants did not have to take a plane to leave the zone, they could simply walk out of the zone. In other words, it was practically possible for them to do it on their own and they did not need anybody’s help. As the Court continued to reason in para 236, ‘Indeed, unlike the case of Amuur, where the French courts described the applicants’ confinement as an “arbitrary deprivation of liberty”, in the present case the Hungarian authorities were apparently convinced that the applicants could realistically leave in the direction of Serbia [emphasis added].’ This quotation also begs the comment as to why what the national authorities were or were not convinced about actually mattered. In addition, the reference in Ilias and Ahmed v Hungary as to how the national authorities had qualified the situation is also bizarre given that ‘deprivation of liberty’ is an autonomous concept under the Convention. On this point, the two dissenting judges, Judge Bianku and Judge Vućinić criticized the majority by highlighting that ‘the Court has reiterated on many occasions that it does not consider itself bound by the domestic courts’ legal conclusions as to the existence of a deprivation of liberty.’

      Narrowing down the importance of Amuur v France

      The third move performed by the Court is playing down the importance of and narrowing the relevance of Amuur v France. In Ilias and Ahmed v Hungary the Grand Chamber reiterated (para 239) the most significant pronouncement from Amuur: the possibility to leave the zone ‘becomes theoretical if no other country offering protection comparable to the protection they expect to find in the country where they are seeking asylum is included to take them in.’ It then noted that this reasoning ‘must be read in close relation to the factual and legal context in that case.’ This meant that in contrast to the situation in Ilias and Ahmed v Hungary, in Amuur the applicants could not leave ‘without authorization to board an airplane and without diplomatic assurance concerning their only possible destination, Syria, a country “not bound by the Geneva Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees.’ (para 240) On this point Ilias and Ahmed v Hungary can be also distinguished from Z.A. and Others v Russia, where the Grand Chamber observed that ‘[…] unlike in land border transit zones, in this particular case leaving the Sheremetyevo airport transit zone would have required planning, contacting aviation companies, purchasing tickets and possibly applying for a visa depending on the destination.’ (para 154) For the applicants in Ilias and Ahmed ‘it was practically possible […] to walk to the border and cross into Serbia, a country bound by the Geneva Convention.’ (para 241). The Grand Chamber acknowledged that the applicants feared of the deficiencies in the Serbian asylum procedure and the related risk of removal to the Republic of North Macedonia or Greece. (para 242) However, what seems to be crucial is that their fears were not related to ‘direct threat to their life or health’ (para 242). It follows that the possibility to leave for a place will not preclude the qualification of the situation as one of detention, only if this place poses a direct threat to life or health.

      As noted by the two dissenting judges, it did not seem to matter for the majority that the applicants could not enter Serbia lawfully. In this way, the majority’s reasoning under Article 5 appears to endorse a situation where people are just pushed out of the border without some formal procedures with elementary guarantees.

      Read as a whole the Grand Chamber judgment in Ilias and Ahmed v Hungary is inconsistent: it contains two findings that are difficult to square together. The Court concluded that since the applicants would not be exposed to a direct risk in Serbia, they were not detained in Hungary. At the same time, Hungary violated Article 3 of the Convention since it did not conduct a proper assessment of the risks that the applicants could face if they were to return to Serbia.

      Overall weakening of the protection of Article 5 ECHR

      One final comment is due. In Ilias and Ahmed v Hungary, the Grand Chamber summarized the following factors for determining whether ‘confinement of foreigners in airport transit zones and reception centers’ can be defined as deprivation of liberty: ‘i) the applicants’ individual situation and their choices, ii) the applicable legal regime of the respective country and its purpose, iii) the relevant duration, especially in the light of the purpose and the procedural protection enjoyed by applicants pending the events, and iv) the nature and degree of the actual restrictions imposed on or experienced by the applicants.’ (para 217) (see also Z.A. and Others v Russia, para 145) Among these criteria particular attention needs to be directed to the applicable legal regime and the availability of procedural protection. In principle, Article 5, if found applicable, offers certain guarantees (e.g. statutory basis for the deprivation of liberty, access to proceedings for challenging the lawfulness of the detention). The Court seems to have inserted such considerations at the definitional stage of its analysis. For example, in Z.A. and Others v Russia, the Grand Chamber when it examined whether the confinement of the applicants in the airport transit zone amounted to deprivation of liberty, noted that they were left ‘in a legal limbo without any possibility of challenging the measure restricting their liberty’ (para 146). This played a role for the Grand Chamber to conclude that the applicants in Z.A. and Others v Russia were indeed deprived of liberty and Article 5 was thus found applicable. In contrast, the Grand Chamber in Ilias and Ahmed v Hungary observed that certain procedural guarantees applied to the applicants’ case (para 226), which also played a role for the final conclusion that Article 5 was not applicable. In sum, instead of scrutinizing the national legal regime and the access to procedural guarantees as part of the substantive analysis under Article 5, where a single deficiency leads to a finding of a violation (i.e. it is sufficient to find a violation of Article 5 if there is no strictly defined statutory basis for the applicants’ detention), the Court has muddled these criteria together with other factors and made them pertinent for the definitional analysis. This ultimately weakens the roles of these criteria and creates uncertainty.

      [1] See V Stoyanova, ‘How Exception must “Very Exceptional” Be? Non-refoulement, Socio-Economic Deprivation and Paposhvili v Belgium’ (2017) International Journal of Refugee Law 29(4) 580.

      [2] See B Nagy, ‘From Reluctance to Total Denial: Asylum Policy in Hungary 2015-2018’ in V Stoyanova and E Karageorgiou (eds) The New Asylum and Transit Countries in Europe during and in the Aftermath of the 2015/2016 Crisis (Brill 2019) 17.

      [3] Boldizsar Nagy has argued that this representation made by the Hungarian government is a lie. See B Nagy, Restricting access to asylum and contempt of courts: illiberals at work in Hungary, https://eumigrationlawblog.eu/restricting-access-to-asylum-and-contempt-of-courts-illiberals-at

      https://strasbourgobservers.com/2019/12/23/the-grand-chamber-judgment-in-ilias-and-ahmed-v-hungary-immigra
      #justice #CEDH #Hongrie #CourEDH

  • The European benchmark for refugee integration: A comparative analysis of the National Integration Evaluation Mechanism in 14 EU countries

    The report presents a comparative, indicator-based assessment of the refugee integration frameworks in place in 14 countries: Czechia, France, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden.

    Conclusions cover the full range of integration dimensions, such as housing, employment, education and aspects of legal integration, and refer to recognized refugees and beneficiaries of subsidiary protection.

    Legal and policy indicators are the focus of analysis, as well as indicators on mainstreaming, coordination and efforts to involve refugees and locals.

    Results are presented in terms of concrete steps that policymakers need to take in order to establish a refugee integration framework in line with the standards required by international and EU law.


    http://www.ismu.org/en/the-european-benchmark-for-refugee-integration-a-comparative-analysis-of-the-n

    #rapport #intégration #France #Grèce #République_Tchèque #Hongrie #Italie #Lettonie #Lituanie #Pays-Bas #Pologne #Portugal #Roumanie #Slovénie #Espagne #Suède #réfugiés #migrations #asile #regroupement_familial #citoyenneté #logement #hébergement #emploi #travail #intégration_professionnelle #éducation #santé #sécurité_sociale
    ping @karine4

  • Statistical Data of the Greek Dublin Unit (7.6.2013 -31.01.2019)

    http://asylo.gov.gr/en/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Dublin-stats_January19EN.pdf
    Ici le tableau pour le incoming requests and transferts (donc, du point de vue de la Grèce, les demandes faites de la part d’autres Etats membres pour la reprise en charge de demandeurs d’asile en Grèce)


    #statistiques #chiffres #Dublin #Grèce #renvois #renvois_Dublin #expulsions

    On voit que la #Suisse est la « championne » des renvois (avec la plus grande efficacité) : 17 renvois « réussi » pour 405 requêtes.
    Mais que les pays qui demandent le plus grand nombre de reprises en charge sont l’#Allemagne et la #Hongrie.
    –-> Sur la période 2013-2018 !

    ping @karine4 @isskein @reka @i_s_

  • Européennes : libéralisme contre #fascisme ?
    https://joellepalmieri.wordpress.com/2019/05/13/europeennes-liberalisme-contre-fascisme

    Depuis longtemps le fascisme adopte un gabarit idéologique simple. Le #racisme et la xénophobie (rejet de l’Autre, juif, musulman, tsigane, migrant…) y tiennent une place de choix tout autant que l’homophobie, le sexisme et l’antiféminisme. Les dirigeants des partis d’extrême-droite donnent l’impression de se refiler ce gabarit, sans trop chercher à le tordre, à peine … Lire la suite →

    #Humeurs #États-Unis #Brésil #Espagne #Europe #France #Hongrie #Italie #masculinisme #militarisation #violences


    https://0.gravatar.com/avatar/9756ba41fe8333157071419a20733f4a?s=96&d=https%3A%2F%2F0.gravatar.com%2Fa

  • La Hongrie, pays membre de l’union européenne - Viktor Orbán Judith Morva - 1er Mai 2019 - Investigaction
    https://www.investigaction.net/fr/la-hongrie-pays-membre-de-lunion-europeenne

    Viktor Orbán, courageux pourfendeur des dikats européens ou maillon utile d’un système qui cache bien son jeu ? Pour répondre, il faut se pencher sur le passé du président hongrois, sa formation à l’idéologie libérale par l’Open Society Fondation de George Soros, le contexte des pays de l’Est après la chute du mur de Berlin, les soutiens financiers essentiels de l’Allemagne ou même les déclarations troublantes du principal intéressé : « Ne faites pas attention à ce que je dis, la seule chose dont vous devez tenir compte est ce que je fais. »

    Après la chute du mur de Berlin, le basculement d’un régime socialiste en un système capitaliste dans les années 1988-1991, dans la zone de l’Europe de l’Est, a grandement surpris la majorité des populations, à l’Est comme à l’Ouest. Gorbatchev ayant accédé au pouvoir en 1985, les prémisses d’un changement se sont manifestées dès cette époque. En Hongrie, l’Open Society Fondation, le bras agissant de George Soros, a été autorisée à opérer en 1984. Ce qui signifia en pratique que les Occidentaux ont commencé à former une nouvelle élite – à l’époque d’idéologie libérale – pour mettre sur la touche et plus tard, marginaliser, voire même exclure, les dirigeants marxistes. Bien sûr, à coté des institutions de Soros – donc des Américains – d’autres intervenants occidentaux ont également été actifs. Nous pouvons à cet égard mentionner les fondations des partis politiques allemands qui, bien que plus discrètes que les américaines, ont été non moins présentes et efficaces.

    L’objectif a très clairement été de sélectionner et de former des nouveaux dirigeants politiques, économiques et administratifs. Le critère a été leur bon vouloir à coopérer avec les pays occidentaux. Ce projet a été mené à grande échelle, plusieurs dizaines, voire centaines de milliers de personnes ont participé à des programmes de formation plus ou moins longs, d’une journée à plusieurs années. Viktor Orbán et son coéquipier de toujours, László Kövér – actuellement président de l’Assemblée Nationale – ont été sélectionnés, formés et mis sur orbite par la Fondation Soros. En tant que boursier, Orbán a ainsi passé l’année scolaire 1989-90 en Angleterre, à Oxford. Il s’affiche alors comme un « libéral » – tout comme son parti, le FIDESZ – et il est même un des vice-présidents de l’Internationale Libérale. 

    Viktor Orbán ne s’est tourné vers la droite et vers le nationalisme qu’en 1992. A cette époque, il lui apparait clairement que les organisations et les partis politiques qui se revendiquent d’une filiation directe avec les années précédant la 2ème guerre mondiale sont devenus trop archaïques. Il y avait donc, aux yeux d’Orbán une place à prendre, sur la droite de l’échiquier politique, pour une formation nouvelle incarnant les valeurs de la classe moyenne traditionnelle, rassemblant élitisme, nationalisme et appartenance à la communauté religieux locale.

    Ce virage idéologique va cependant ouvrir un espace assez étroite pour Orbán. Il doit apparaitre comme le courageux défenseur de la Nation, un souverainiste traditionel, alors que la Hongrie est un pays économiquement dépendant. De ce fait, tout dirigeant politique qui veut se maintenir au pourvoir doit collaborer étroitement avec les Occidentaux. La suite lui donnera raison. En effet, les dirigeants des multinationales installées en Hongrie sont, selon tous les sondages, absolument satisfaits du gouvernement d’Orbán. Bien qu’Orbán, personnellement, avec la majorité de son équipe, ait été sélectionné par des Américains, il semble qu’actuellement ce soit le soutien de l’Allemagne qui prime. Il est en bons termes surtout avec les politiciens de la Bavière qui l’aident à se maintenir au pouvoir.

    La dépendance économique du pays se pose en termes très clairs : la Hongrie, comme toute la région des anciens pays socialistes de l’Europe de l’Est, est un pays de la semi-périphérie de l’Union européenne, c’est à dire un réservoir de main d’ouvre bon marché pour l’Europe occidentale. L’appauvrissement est tellement marqué que ces pays ont perdu au moins 10% de leur population. Les jeunes émigrent massivement et des usines d’assemblage des multinationales occidentales s’installent dans la région pour profiter du bas niveau des salaires, qui est à peine le tiers de ce qui est pratiqué dans l’Ouest de l’Europe. C’est une situation structurelle stable qui n’offre aucune perspective d’évolution de rattrapage des salaires et donc de niveau de vie avec celui des voisins de l’Europe de l’Ouest.

    Cette réalité crée une situation politique forcément instable. En effet, il est difficile de faire accepter par la population que, même à long terme, il faudra s’accommoder d’un niveau de vie fortement inférieur à celui des pays situés à seulement quelques kilomètres.

    Pour maintenir cette situation, l’Union européenne accorde à la Hongrie un financement annuel substantiel, de l’ordre de 4 % du budget de l’Etat. Ainsi, tandis qu’Orbán apparait à l’intérieur du pays, voire dans toute l’Europe, comme un politicien qui tient tête, qui est téméraire et défend les intérêts de son pays contre la colonisation occidentale, contre la bureaucratie de Bruxelles et, depuis 2015, contre des migrants, dans la réalité il doit veiller à maintenir ce flux de financement une année sur l’autre. Il est très volontiers provocateur – comme l’a revélé Wikileaks – et a ouvertement annoncé aux diplomates en poste à Budapest en 2006 : « Ne faites pas attention à ce que je dis, la seule chose dont vous devez tenir compte est ce que je fais”. Il y a donc un clivage très net entre les actions du gouvernement et la propagande politique destinée à maintenir sa popularité.

    Un « ordre de pouvoir semi-féodal »
    En dehors du financement régulier que lui accorde Bruxelles, Orbán et l’Union européenne travaillent main dans la main sur le projet d’assouplissement du code du travail. L’appauvrissement d’une partie importante de la population exige que l’Etat s’occupe de son sort, car 10 à 12% des gens vivent dans une grande misère et dans l’ensemble 40% de la population vit autour du niveau du seuil de pauvreté.

    Orbán a mis en place un système de travail dit « d’utilité publique » , qui connait un succès indéniable et renforce la stabilité du gouvernement. L’État emploie dans ce cadre des centaines de milliers de personnes en chômage de longue durée, et remplace de fait l’indemnisation du chômage qui est limitée à trois mois. Les salaires de ces travaux ne sont pas uniformes et sont nettement inférieurs au salaire minimum. La tâche à réaliser peut être utile ou complètement inutile, et il arrive que le travailleur soit placé dans une entreprise privée où il ne recevra pas le salaire de ses collègues. Le système repose sur un traitement individuel et une dépendance personnelle importante. Ce qu’une sociologue de renom, Erzsébet Szalai, appelle un « ordre de pouvoir semi-féodal ». L’essence de ce système consiste à diluer le champ d’application du code du travail, à rendre les salaires, les horaires et autres conditions de travail, occasionnels et arbitraires. De plus, le gouvernement peut augmenter ou diminuer très rapidement le nombre de ces emplois d’utilité publique, ce qui constitue un outil d’influence politique immédiate. A la veille d’élections, l’Etat recrute plus largement. Dans les régions les plus pauvres, il s’agit souvent de la source de revenus la plus importante pour la population. Avec ce système de travail d’utilité publique, Orbán a réussi à obtenir le soutien des plus grands perdants du capitalisme : ceux qui sont vulnérables et mènent une vie dans la pauvreté. Paradoxe de cet état de fait : ces derniers votent massivement pour Orbán.

    Depuis le mois de décembre 2018, des manifestations sont massives dans la capitale, à Budapest et, fait nouveau, également dans les villes de la province. Tout ca ne semble pas trop inquiéter Orbán et son équipe. Car le soutien de l’Union Européenne est infaillible. Qualifiée hier de « baraque la plus gaie du camp socialiste », la Hongrie est devenue un des ateliers industriels de l’Europe capitaliste. Tandis que les gens battent le pavé dans le froid et sous la neige, l’UE a viré un forte somme, de près de 3 milliards d’euros au gouvernement d’Orbán.

    Cette réponse à la colère des Hongrois a choqué bien des manifestants. Il est probable que les drapeaux européens, qui flottaient régulièrement dans les manifestations à Budapest, seront moins nombreux á l’avenir !

    #Hongrie #ue #union_européenne #Viktor_Orbán #Open_Society #Fondation de #george_soros #élites #appauvrissement #pauvreté #Code_Du_Travail

  • Angeli sotto accusa : quando la solidarietà diventa un crimine

    #Riccardo_Noury parle de la naissance de la criminalisation des ONG (à partir de la minute 3’20) :

    "La criminalizzazione delle ONG è iniziata, per rimanere in questo decennio e per rimanere in Europa, in Russia con delle leggi contro le associazioni, sempre accusate di essere spie o agenti stranieri per il fatto di ricevere dei finanziamenti dall’estero. Poi questa legge è stata fotocopiata in Ungheria. Poi questa legge è stata promossa in Polonia. E oltre alle leggi che colpiscono tanto la libertà di associazione quanto singoli comportamenti di assistenza, c’è una deligittimazione fatta di titoli di giornale, fatta di dichiarazioni politiche. Io ricordo sempre quel giorno di aprile 2017 in cui gli ’angeli del mare’ diventarono coloro che, da un giorno all’altro, non salvavano più persone ma erano in commutta (?) con i trafficanti. E lì questa narrazioni è esplosa anche in Italia.

    http://www.rainews.it/dl/rainews/media/angeli-sotto-accusa-1b555f32-1679-4b77-8820-13d564896233.html

    Sur le #délit_de_solidarité #criminalisation #ONG #solidarité #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Méditerranée #sauvetage #Alpes #frontière_sud-alpine #Russie #Hongrie #Italie #Pologne #loi #histoire

  • VIOLENCE REPORTS

    The collective expulsion and violent return of asylum seekers to the Bosnian border surrounding #Velika_Kladuša is a routine occurrence. Men, women, and even children regularly return from their attempts to cross through Croatia and Slovenia with split lips, black eyes, and broken bones. The search for safety and asylum is all too often met with police batons and closed fists.

    The brutal practices of the Croatian police are against international laws and directives. Firstly, the beating and deportation of all people on the move, both irregular migrants and asylum seekers, is against the prohibition of collective expulsion (Article 4 Protocol 4 ECHR*), and the absolute prohibition of torture and non-humane or degrading treatment or punishment (Article 3 ECHR*).

    Secondly, according to the EU Directive on Asylum Procedures (2005/85/EC), all people on the move are entitled to information about asylum, translation assistance, the ability to present their case to a competent authority, notification of the outcome, and the right to appeal a negative decision (1). But most importantly, viewing people searching safety as mere illegal numbers and dangerous bodies pushes them to a grey zone. Within this grey zone, they are stripped of the right to have rights, resulting in their humiliation without legal consequence, leaving perpetrators unrecognisable and unpunished.

    Thousands of lives are being slowly destroyed while the EU community silently overlooks the brutality of its own border regime, absolving itself of any real sense of responsibility.

    To this end, No Name Kitchen, in coordination with several other independent groups operating in the area, has been engaged in the collection and presentation of the violence which occurs at Europe’s doorstep. In this capacity, we collect the testimonies of victims of border violence and present them to a variety of actors within the field in the hopes of highlighting the systematic nature of this violence. The methodological process for these reports is centered on leveraging the close social contact that we have as independent volunteers with refugees and migrants to monitor pushbacks from Croatia. When individuals return with significant injuries or stories of abuse, one of our violence monitoring volunteers will sit down with them and collect their testimonies. We collect hard data (dates, geo-locations, officer descriptions, photos of injuries/medical reports, etc.) but also open narratives of the abuse.

    http://www.nonamekitchen.org/en/violence-reports

    Lien pour télécharger le rapport :


    http://www.nonamekitchen.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Finished-Border-Violence-on-the-Balkan-Route.pdf
    #violence #rapport #route_des_balkans #Balkans #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Bosnie #frontières #Croatie #Slovénie

    • Garaža za mučenje migranata

      “Policija je dovela njih sedmero u garažu u Korenicu, gdje su im oduzeli sve stvari. Slomili su im mobitele, uništili punjače. Uzeli su im novac, cigarete i hranu. Kad su skinuli odjeću policajci su ih počeli tući rukama, laktovima, nogama”. U posljednjih pola godine pojavila su se višestruka svjedočanstva koja ukazuju na to da hrvatska policija pritvara i muči izbjeglice i migrante u garaži u policijskoj postaji u Korenici. Garaža s plavim vratima, u kojoj, kako se opisuje u svjedočanstvima, izbjeglice i migranti bivaju pretučeni i izgladnjivani, nalazi se svega par metara od dječjeg igrališta.

      U više izvještaja različitih organizacija, a najnovije i u posljednjem izvještaju Border Violence Monitoringa, opisuju se garažna mjesta za pritvaranja i zlostavljanje, koja po opisu mogu odgovarati policijskoj postaji u Korenici, koja je zbog blizina granice često u službi odvraćanja izbjeglica i migranta natrag u Bosnu i Hercegovinu.

      Prema posljednjim svjedočanstvima u travnju je grupa muškaraca iz Sirije, Alžira i Maroka, uhvaćena blizu granice sa Slovenijom, odvedena u garažu u Korenicu i zatim vraćena natrag u Bosnu i Hercegovinu. Izrazili su namjeru za službenim traženjem azila, ali im je odbijen pristup proceduri, iako na nju imaju zakonsko pravo.

      “Policija je dovela njih sedmero u garažu u Korenicu, gdje su im oduzeli sve stvari. Slomili su im mobitele, uništili punjače. Uzeli su im novac, cigarete i hranu. Jednoj su osobi uzeli čak i naočale. U prostoru je samo prljavi pod, bez deka, spužvi, wc-a. Morali su na njemu ležati, iako je bilo užasno hladno. Kad su skinuli odjeću policajci su ih počeli tući rukama, laktovima, nogama. Imali su i elektrošokere i pepper sprej, koje su koristili nekoliko puta. Svi su ljudi plakali”, stoji u svjedočanstvu.

      Prva svjedočanstva i opisi garaže pojavili su se u prosincu prošle godine, od strane migranata koji su nakon prelaska granice u Hrvatsku uhićeni, odvedeni u “garažu” pa protjerani natrag u Bosnu i Hercegovinu, bez da im je omogućeno pravo da u Hrvatskoj zatraže azil.

      U prosincu 2018. godine, kako je evidentirao Border Violence Monitoring, grupu Alžiraca je nakon prelaska granice pokupio kombi s policajcima u maskirnim uniformama, koji su izgledali kao vojska. Odveli su ih u garažu.

      “Policijska postaja je ispred garaže. Dvorište je između policijske postaje i garaže. Unutra je umiovaonik i grijalica, te svjetla na stropu. Prostorija je malena. Nema prozora, samo plava vrata”, stoji u opisu. Istaknuli su kako je bilo hladno te zbog hladnoće nisu mogli spavati. Policajci su, navodi se, s njima pričali nasilno te su im odbili dati hranu.

      Naposljetku su, s drugim migrantima koji su već bili u garaži, bez da im se omogući da zatraže azil, izbačeni u planinama i poslani da hodaju natrag u Bosnu satima. Kad su izišli iz kombija, policajci su naložili vatru u koju su bacili sve njihove stvari. “Jedan je policajac htio uzeti i deku u kojoj je bila umotana djevojčica iz iračke obitelji, ali ga je drugi policajac zaustavio da to ne napravi”, navodi se u svjedočanstvu. Vreće za spavanje i šatori su završili u plamenu.

      “Policija radi što hoće”, komentar je koji se učestalo čuje među brojnim izbjeglicama koji su više puta protjerani iz Hrvatske. Većina odvraćenih i protjeranih u Velikoj Kladuši, gradu blizu granice u kojem smo nedavno bili, žale se upravo najgorljivije na hrvatsku policiju.

      I mještani Velike Kladuše, pogotovo oni koji svakodnevno pomažu izbjeglicama i migrantima, ističu kako ljudi s granice dolaze izmučeni i gladni, nerijetko s modricama, ožiljcima, otvorenim ranama. “Svi ti prizori podsjećaju me na zadnji rat, jedino što nema bombardiranja”, komentira nam jedna mještanka. Nasilje koje provodi hrvatska granična policija tako je postalo svakodnevna tema.

      Krajem prošle godine pojavljuje se još jedno svjedočanstvo o “garaži”, u kojem stoji: “Stavili su nas u ćeliju, ali to zapravo nije ćelija, nego više kao garaža, s plavim vratima i pločicama. Ispred je parkiralište i policijska postaja”. “Kad nas je policija uhvatila, nisu nam dali ništa. Tamo je bio neki stari kruh, dosta star. Zatražio sam taj kruh, ali mi ga nisu dali”, opisuje jedan od migranata.

      Ponukani ovim svjedočanstvima i opisima garaže za mučenje, nedavno smo posjetili Korenicu. Na ulazu u Korenicu primjećujemo jedan policijski auto parkiran kraj šume, i policajca koji se upravo izvlači iz šume prema autu. Tijekom zimskih mjeseci mogli smo čitati kako “službenici postaje granične policije Korenice provode mjere pojačanog suzbijanja nezakonitih migracija”. U razgovoru s mještanima doznajemo kako su pojačane policijske snage u okolici u posljednje vrijeme, a izbjeglice i migrante se intenzivno traži po okolnim brdima.

      Prilikom našeg kratkog boravka u Korenici, ispred policijske postaje se izmijenio velik broj policajaca, dolazili su i odlazili autima i kombijima. Osim policajaca u redovnim uniformama, bilo je i obučenih u tamnozelene uniforme. U postaju dolaze i kombiji bez policijskih oznaka, a prisutni su i policajci u civilnoj odjeći.

      Prednji dio postaje sastoji se od velike zgrade s mnogo prozora, dok je unutarnji dio kompleksa ograđen i s malim dvorištem na kojem je parkirano nekoliko policijskih automobila i kombija, uz prostorije koje nalikuju na garaže, s plavim vratima. Te prostorije s jedne strane gledaju i na obližnje dječje igralište i na tom dijelu nema nijednog prozora. U dvorištu se nalaze i Toi Toi WC-i.

      U najnovijem svjedočanstvu koje je dokumentirao Border Violence Monitoring stoji: “Možemo ići samo dva puta dnevno na zahod, ujutro i navečer. Za ovo nas se vodi van u dvorište, gdje se nalaze tri plastična WC-a”, što ukazuje da postoji mogućnost da se radi upravo o ovoj policijskoj postaji. Aktivisti nam potvrđuju kako su svjedočanstva o “garaži” postala učestalija i sve detaljnija u opisima.

      I u svjedočanstvima iz ožujka izbjeglice i migranti navode kako su bili zatvoreni satima bez vode i hrane, te su iz nužde morali urinirati u kutu prostorije. “Bili smo kao kokoši. Ne želim se prisjećati tog trenutka. Bili smo poput životinja”, opisuje jedan migrant. “Pod je betoniran, hladno je, moramo spavati na njemu. Postoji samo jedna slavina za vodu i mali grijač na zidu. Vrata su plava i na njima je ispisano na mnogo jezika, datumi, imena i mjesta. Pakistanski, alžirski, marokanski, iranski, sirijski, odasvud”, opisuje se.

      Kad su pušteni iz pritvora garaže, kažu, policija ih je ostavila u planinskom području i poslala da hodaju kilometrima natrag prema Bihaću. Učestalo se spominje oduzimanje novca i mobitela i vrijednih stvari koje migranti sa sobom nose.

      Procedure odvraćanja izbjeglica i migranata obično se izvode iza zatvorenih vrata i u skrovitim područjima, čime se umanjuje rizik da će biti onih koji će im svjedočiti. Paralelu možemo povući i sa tzv. trećestupanjskim policijskim ispitivanjima.

      “Većina trećestupanjskih ispitivanja događala se tijekom pritvaranja na izoliranim lokacijama, uključujući policijske postaje, garaže, ponekad i hotele i mrtvačnice. Ali obično se takva mučenja događaju u pozadinskim sobama, incommunicado prostorijama, posebno dizajniranima u ove svrhe. U javnosti se postojanje takvih prostorija poriče, a njihovo održavanje zahtjeva šutnju čitavog sustava. Policija je rijeko kažnjavana za brutalne metode ispitivanja, korištene za izvlačenje priznanja, ali i da se ’nepoželjne’ otjera iz grada”, navodi se u radu Police Interrogation and Coercion in Domestic American History: Lessons for the War on Terror, Richarda A. Leoa i Alexe Koenig.

      “Ovakve prakse postaju sredstvo putem kojeg policija nadilazi svoju ispitivačku ulogu, pojačava svoju moć i zaobilazi ulogu koja je dizajnirana kako bi se spriječila koncentracija i zlouporaba moći od strane države”, zaključuju autori.

      Brutalne prakse zlostavljanja i prisilnih protjerivanja koje provode policijski službenici na hrvatskoj granici i o kojima sad već postoje kontinuirana i detaljna svjedočanstva, protivne su i domaćim i međunarodnim zakonima te direktivama.

      “Premlaćivanje i deportacija ljudi protivni su zabrani kolektivnih protjerivanja (Članak 4 Protokola 4 ECHR) i zabrani mučenja i nečovječnog ili ponižavajućeg postupanja ili kazni (Članak 3 ECHR)”, navodi se u Petom izvještaju o nezakonitim protjerivanjima i nasilju Republike Hrvatske, koji su nedavno objavile organizacije Are You Syrious?, Centar za mirovne studije i Incijativa Dobrodošli.

      Vraćanje migranata u Bosnu i Hercegovinu bez uzimanja u obzir osobnih okolnosti svakog pojedinog slučaja, a posebice zanemarujući njihovu potrebu za međunarodnom zaštitom, pa čak i na izričito traženje azila, uporaba sredstava prisile te ponižavanje ozbiljna su povreda izbjegličkih i migantskih prava, ali i enorman prijestup MUP-a, na što je upozoravala i pučka pravobraniteljica.

      MUP-u smo uputili upit za komentar o opžubama za nasilje i mučenje od strane hrvatske policije, kao i za slučaj “garaže” koju se povezuje s policijskom postajom u Korenici. Upitali smo ih i jesu li, s obzirom na svjedočanstva koja se pojavljuju od prosinca, reagirali na optužbe i posvetili se detaljnoj istrazi i uvidu u potencijalne prijestupe i prekoračenja policijske ovlasti u Korenici. Do zaključenja teksta odgovor na upite nismo dobili.

      Kada su u pitanju optužbe za policijsko nasilje, u prijašnjim reakcijama iz MUP-a su isticali kako “prilikom postupanja prema migrantima policija poštuje njihova temeljna prava i dostojanstvo te im omogućuje pristup sustavu međunarodne zaštite, ukoliko im je takva zaštita potrebna, sukladno općim dokumentima o ljudskim pravima, regulativi EU-a te nacionalnom zakonodavstvu. Želimo naglasiti nultu stopu tolerancije ovog ministarstva na nezakonitu uporabu sredstava prisile od strane hrvatske policije naspram bilo koje populacije, kao i nultu stopu tolerancije nad neprocesuiranjem bilo kojeg kaznenog djela ili prekršaja počinjenog od strane policijskih službenika”.

      Kako je moguće da se u zemlji “nulte stope tolerancije na nezakonitu upotrebu sredstava prisile” kontinuirano pojavljuju svjedočanstva o garažama za mučenje? Ostaje nam zapitati se je li zaista moguće da su sva ova detaljna svjedočanstva, koja se u mnogočemu podudaraju, prikupljena u različitim vremenskim periodima, od ljudi čiji se putevi uglavnom nisu sreli, lažna? Volonteri i aktivisti koji prikupljaju svjedočanstva također se rotiraju i dolaze iz različitih organizacija, pa je i njihova “sugestivnost” faktor koji bi se moglo prekrižiti.

      Garaža za mučenje mali je prostor, ali je bijeg od suočavanja s njenim postojanjem velik i indikativan. Arundhati Roy piše: “Ne postoje oni koji nemaju glas. Postoje samo oni koji su namjerno ušutkani i oni koje biramo da ne čujemo.”

      https://www.h-alter.org/vijesti/garaza-za-mucenje-migranata
      #Korenica

      Commentaire reçu par email de Inicijativa Dobrodosli, le 22.05.2019 :

      H-alter published a text based on refugee testimonies and previously published reports of torture in a blue-coloured door garage that may correspond to the description of the police station in Korenica, located near the children’s playground. The testimonies describe denial of food, limited use of toilet and physical violence that occurs not only at the border but also in the depths of the Croatian territory.

    • ‘Nobody Hears You’ : Migrants, Refugees Beaten on Balkan Borders

      Migrants and refugees say they continue to face violence at the hands of police while trying to cross the Balkan peninsula.

      It was supposed to have closed. But migrants and refugees from the Middle East, Asia and Africa are still crossing the Balkan peninsula en route to Western Europe. Many report brutality at the hands of the police.

      In April this year, some 3,600 migrants and refugees – mainly from Afghanistan and Iran – were registered in Serbia, according to the United Nations refugee agency, UNHCR.

      Bosnia last year registered 25,000, though only 3,500 chose to stay in the country while the rest crossed quickly into European Union member Croatia.

      No Name Kitchen, NNK, an NGO assisting migrants and refugees, says police violence is on the rise.

      Between May 2017 and May last year, NNK recorded 215 reported cases of push-backs by Croatian police to Serbia, of which 45 per cent involved physical violence.

      Between May 2017 and December last year, there were 141 push-backs from Croatia to Bosnia, NNK reported, of which 84 per cent involved violence.

      Croatian authorities denied police used violence against migrants and refugees, telling BIRN that such accusations were often made up.

      BIRN journalists spoke to a number of refugees and migrants in Serbia, Bosnia and Slovenia about their experiences with Croatian police. Most chose to be identified only by their first names.

      Ahmed: ‘Nobody hears you’

      “They make the music loud and start beating us, one by one. With sticks, electrical sticks…,” said Ahmed, a Moroccan who had spent the past month in a migrant camp in the small Serbian border town of Sid.

      Ahmed said he had tried several times to cross the nearby border into Croatia, running a gauntlet known among migrants and refugees as ‘The Game’, but had been turned back each time by Croatian police.

      “I’ve been captured and they turn me back, beat me and turn me back,” he told BIRN. “They would come out from the car, one by one and they start, like that until you scream and nobody hears you,” he said.

      Ali: ‘Police have no heart’

      Ali and a group of friends had made it into Croatia from Bosnia in April and walked for six days in the direction of Slovenia.

      “Police officers, they caught us and after that, they brought us in the police station and we were for four hours in the police station like a prisoner and after that… they beat us,” he told BIRN in the northwestern Bosnian town of Bihac, a hub for migrants and refugees trying to cross the Croatian border.

      “Police have no heart. They don’t want to see that the guys are human. It’s really horrible.”

      Nue: ‘I don’t have a country’

      Some of those BIRN spoke to said they were fleeing repression in their own countries.

      Nue, a Palestinian now also stuck in Sid, said: “My country, I don’t have a country because I am from Palestine… I have ID just to say I am from Palestine.”

      Nue said that when he tried to cross the border, he was caught by the Croatian police. He pointed to a cut on his head.

      “When he’s [the police officer] catching me, he does like this,” he said, imitating being beaten. “I have to just stay in the tent because maybe I have a problem in my head because [the beating was] very strong.”

      Nue said he was now sleeping in the street.

      Another man, in the centre of Sid, said police were also violent towards his wife, who was nine months pregnant when BIRN spoke to the couple.

      “They don’t care if she’s pregnant or not,” he said. “There is no human qualities in them, you understand. I never seen such people.”

      Muhamed: Old and new injuries

      Muhamed, from Tunisia, said he had been in Serbia for six weeks having been beating by police on the Croatian border.

      “They done with you everything,” he said, and showed injuries he said were inflicted the day before by Croatian police.

      Muhamed said he was beaten for 10 minutes and then sent back to Serbia.

      “Everytime, doing this, everytime, look, this old and this new,” he said, pointing to the bruises and cuts.

      Khalid: It was necessary

      In a migrant camp in Slovenia, Khalid, from Eritrea, said he had been deported back to Bosnia eight times.

      “I came to Ljubljana by walk,” he said.

      “[Croatian police] deported me eight times – four times to [Velika Kladusa] and four times to Bihac. They beat us, and they take [our] phones. They make many things.”

      Though he personally had not faced violence, Khalid said he knew of many others who had.

      “All the people now, they forget everything because they crossed the borders and also we have to tell them sorry, we cross your country… It was necessary to do it.”

      Activist: ‘It’s worse and worse’

      Diego Menjibar, an activist with No Name Kitchen, told BIRN:

      “They are beaten by batons in borders. Also, with fist, kicking them. We have a lot of cases every week of people beaten with batons, with physical violence, also verbal violence and some of them, they also passed out while they [were] beat, so we have a doctor here.”

      Menjibar spoke in a disused factory in Sid that is now filled with tents for migrants and refugees. Roughly 100 pass through the camp each day.

      “We talk with the people in the squat and we listen what they say and every time it’s worse and worse,” he said.

      Beaten around the legs

      In April, Swiss broadcaster SRF and the crew of the TV programme “Rundschau” spent three weeks in the fields on the Bosnian-Croatian border speaking to migrants and refugees in the moment after they were turned back by Croatian police.

      “I was literally running after these people when they came down [after being deported],” SRF journalist Nicole Vögele told BIRN. “I was aware that now what we really need is a full line of evidence.”

      In May, SRF broadcast a piece showing Croatian police pushing back migrants and refugees into Bosnia. Vögele said many sustained injuries to their legs from being beaten by police with sticks.

      “Most of them were showing me the [lower] parts of the legs,” Vögele said. “Two days later, I asked them if they have same traces because just an hour after the beating, as you can imagine you can see a bit of red. But two days later it is clearly visible.”

      In the SRF report, an Afghan family, including small children, spoke of bring stopped in the forest by Croatian policemen.

      “They pointed their guns at us and said ‘Stop’. We were very scared and cried,” said the oldest of the children. When the family asked for asylum, the police officers laughed and said that they would be given “Bosnian asylum” – meaning that they would be deported back to Bosnia.

      Injuries

      The Serbian-based NGO Asylum Protection Centre has also gathered extensive evidence of Croatian police brutality.

      In late April, Rados Djurovic, the director of the centre, said instances of violence were on the rise.

      The NGO has also gathered evidence of migrant families, including children, being starved and exhausted and illegally pushed back into Serbia by Hungarian police.

      Police denial

      The office of the Croatian ombudsperson said it had acted in more than 50 cases concerning refugees and migrants.

      The cases “often involve complaints on various grounds, including police treatment,” the office said in a written reply to BIRN.

      Most complaints concerned Croatian and Hungarian police.

      “The complaints relate to various types of violence, from hits by hands and sticks to the bite of official dogs,” the office said.

      The local health centre in Bihac, in northwestern Bosnia, said it saw up to 10 cases of violent injuries each month, “but injuries are done by various subjects, i.e. the internal conflicts of migrants, third parties and / or police”.

      Croatia’s interior ministry said it had looked into all complaints of alleged coercive measures against migrants and that none had warranted further criminal investigation.

      “In all these cases, detailed field inspections were carried out in police administrations, and so far in none of the cases have been found that police officers are using forced means against migrants,” it told BIRN.

      The ministry stressed its respect for the fundamental rights and dignity of migrants and that it used “prescribed procedure for returning to the country from which they illegally entered into the Republic of Croatia.”

      “Migrants are most often falsely accusing police officers of violence, expecting such accusations will help them with a new attempt to enter the Republic of Croatia and continue their journey towards the destination countries,” it said.

      In Bosnia, a police spokesman in the Una-Sana canton, where Bihac is located, said police had not received any complaints of violence against migrants and refugees by Bosnian police.

      https://balkaninsight.com/2019/06/13/nobody-hears-you-migrants-refugees-beaten-on-balkan-borders

    • Un monde de murs : en Bosnie, la matraque et les poings comme frontière

      L’Europe a fait tomber ses murs mais bétonne ses frontières. Depuis 2018, des milliers de personnes tentent de traverser le corridor croate depuis la Bosnie pour atteindre l’espace Schengen. Migrants et ONG dénoncent des refoulements ultra-violents.

      Le camp de #Vučjak est situé sur une ancienne décharge. D’après le responsable de la Croix-Rouge, du méthane s’échappe du sol dans certaines zones. Autour des terrains empruntés chaque jour par les migrants sont susceptibles d’abriter des #mines_antipersonnel. - Kristof Vadino.

      Ici, on appelle ça le « #game ». Tenter de franchir la frontière entre la Bosnie et la Croatie et atteindre la Slovénie puis l’Italie sans se faire pincer. Le « game », Anwar peut en parler : il a « joué », il a perdu. Ils sont un petit groupe d’adolescents pakistanais et afghans dans le coin d’une grande tente du camp de Vučjak, dans les montagnes du nord de la Bosnie, à manger à même le sol le deuxième (et dernier) repas de la journée. Certains sont majeurs. « La police a tout pris : mes vêtements, mes chaussures… Ils ont tout jeté dans le feu. Et puis, ils ont frappé, fort », raconte le jeune Pakistanais. Parce qu’on demande, il précise : coups de poing, coups de pied, coups de matraque. « Ils nous ont poussés dans la rivière, l’eau était vraiment très froide, mais ils nous ont forcés à rester là deux heures. Ensuite, on a dû monter dans un véhicule et ils ont mis la climatisation à fond. » Ils ont été renvoyés pieds nus dans la forêt.

      Si, à vol d’oiseau la frontière n’est qu’à quelques kilomètres du camp, il faut plusieurs heures de marche pour passer la montagne, notoirement habitée par loups, serpents et ours (un psychologue croate de Médecins du Monde raconte avoir suivi une enfant traumatisée après que sa famille a été prise en chasse par un ours). Cette fois-ci, Anwar s’en sort bien, des contusions mais pas de blessures. Celle d’avant, au tibia, a cicatrisé. Une fois, il est parvenu à marcher pendant dix jours en Croatie. Il approchait de la frontière slovène lorsqu’on l’a attrapé. « A chaque fois, ils nous lâchent dans la montagne quand ils nous ramènent. » Les violences ? « Toujours. » Un ami l’a dépanné d’une paire de chaussures et de vêtements, mais il faudra quelque temps avant de réunir à nouveau le matériel nécessaire pour camper dans la « jungle » le long des routes croates. Avant d’avoir une opportunité avec les passeurs aussi. Le tarif : 1.200 euros – payables à l’arrivée – pour rejoindre Trieste à pied depuis la Bosnie. L’option « taxi » est beaucoup plus sûre, mais trois à quatre fois plus chère.

      « C’est dur », mais pas question de dévisser de l’objectif. « Inch Allah, je retenterai et je rejoindrai la Belgique », assure Anwar, dans un grand sourire fayot. « Il n’y a pas de vie pour nous au Pakistan. » Autour, les copains qui comprennent un peu l’anglais acquiescent, sérieux.
      Une petite équipe pour 700 hommes

      L’acharnement, c’est l’impossibilité de faire machine arrière : la dette contractée auprès de sa famille – les terres vendues, les sacrifices pour financer le voyage –, l’obligation de réussite. C’est aussi que, si violentes que puissent être les fins de partie, le « game » vaut le coup. Depuis 2018, un peu plus de 50.000 migrants sont entrés en Bosnie. D’après les chiffres de l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations (OIM), ils seraient actuellement autour de 7.000 sur le territoire ; 700 ont fait le choix de rentrer dans leur pays d’origine. Les autres sont vraisemblablement passés en Europe.

      Comme beaucoup, Anwar a passé quelques nuits devant les portes de Bira, le vaste entrepôt qui parque depuis un an plus de 1.500 hommes, mineurs isolés et familles à quelques kilomètres de là. Il est complet en permanence (1.800 personnes en ce moment). L’espace permettrait de rajouter des containers pour ouvrir 500 places supplémentaires, mais le gouvernement local restreint strictement la capacité. Les conditions sont rudes mais, à côté du camp « cauchemar » de Vučjak, c’est trois étoiles. « J’ai dit à la barrière de Bira que j’avais 17 ans », raconte Anwar. « Mais ils n’ont pas voulu que j’entre. » Il a fini par lâcher l’affaire et revenir au camp.

      Dans la tente des garçons, le container de la Croix-Rouge locale conserve les pains qui restent du petit-déjeuner. Les retardataires et retournés frappent régulièrement à la porte pour en récupérer. « It’s oooooopeeeeeen. » Affalé sur la table, le garçon aux traits tirés retire prestement le masque médical en se redressant. Mohamed Cehic gère la toute petite équipe de la Croix-Rouge qui tente tant bien que mal, seule, de répondre aux besoins des 700 hommes du camp. Cinq « volontaires » mobilisés sept jours par semaine. Il est épuisé. « Rien à voir avec le travail, j’ai juste mal dormi », assure le responsable. Avant de prendre les rênes du camp, il avait travaillé un mois dans les centres gérés par l’OIM, où la Croix-Rouge assure la distribution des repas. Et avant cela, il était à l’école. Il a 19 ans.

      « On fait tout : on a monté les tentes, on collecte et distribue la nourriture, les vêtements, tout », explique Mohamed Cehic. « Ce n’est pas un camp, je dirais plutôt un… site de transit. La situation n’est pas bonne. Ce n’est pas facile pour les gens. » Il est parfois interrompu par les puissantes rafales de vent qui rabattent pluie et branches contre la paroi du container. Reprend quand cela se calme. « L’hiver approche. C’est la montagne ici, il fait beaucoup plus froid qu’en ville. Ça va vite devenir très difficile. » Est-ce qu’il y a d’autres questions, parce qu’il devrait y aller là, il y a encore… beaucoup.
      « Si une solution n’est pas trouvée rapidement, les gens vont mourir »

      Dehors, les sollicitations reprennent. Deux hommes reviennent de l’unité mobile que Médecins sans frontières fait désormais venir quatre fois par semaine à un kilomètre de là (il n’y avait avant cela aucun accès à l’aide médicale). Ils ont un papier certifiant leur diagnostic : tuberculose. Il faut organiser leur transport à l’hôpital. Entendant parler de « docteur », d’autres arrivent. Un homme a le poignet blessé. « Police. » Il a improvisé un bandage avec un t-shirt déchiré et de la ficelle. Un autre encore ; une plaie suinte à travers le tissu à sa cheville. « C’est trop tard pour le docteur. Demain. » L’eau dans la tente ? « Je sais, on n’a rien pour réparer. » Médicament ? Vêtements ? Non ; plus tard : désolé, je ne peux rien faire ; demain. « Je ne sais pas si on pourra continuer comme ça », reconnaît Mohamed Cehic. « Les autorités ont dit que le camp fermerait le 15 novembre, mais honnêtement, je ne sais plus à qui faire confiance. » Même la nourriture manque. Dans son dernier rapport, la Croix-Rouge affirme ne pas parvenir à fournir les 2.200 calories minimum nécessaires. Le chef de mission de l’OIM, Peter Van der Auweraert, est, lui, plus catégorique : « Si une solution n’est pas trouvée rapidement, les gens vont mourir. »

      Vučjak n’a rien d’un camp spontané. Il résulte de la volonté du gouvernement cantonal d’éloigner les migrants des centres-villes et des habitations. Nouvellement empruntée, la route bosnienne a vu le nombre de migrants soudainement augmenter début 2018, passant de 1.116 personnes en 2017 à 23.848 l’année suivante. Même si un centre d’accueil existe à Sarajevo (saturé, comme les autres), la population se concentre dans le seul canton d’Una Sana, très proche de la Slovénie et de l’Italie. Ce qui a pesé sur la population. En l’espace de dix mois, la police du canton a ouvert 185 dossiers criminels à l’encontre de migrants, incluant un meurtre, trois tentatives de meurtre et des intrusions dans des maisons (« Plutôt en quête d’abris que de vol », nuance le porte-parole de la police). Des migrants étaient victimes dans 26 dossiers. Mais s’agissant de Vučjak, l’OIM et la plupart des autres organisations (y compris l’Union européenne, qui finance tous les centres) ont refusé de jouer le jeu. Le site, une ancienne décharge, n’a pas été testé pour sa toxicité. Sans eau courante, ni électricité, il est entouré de zones toujours susceptibles d’abriter des mines antipersonnel, résidus de guerre.
      Violences policières

      Seule la Croix-Rouge a répondu à l’appel du gouvernement et jongle depuis avec des bouts de ficelle. Enfin, des colsons pour l’heure, seul moyen de rabibocher les tentes déchirées par les intempéries. Au petit matin, les hommes transis de froid se rassemblent près des feux aux abords des tentes. Voire à l’intérieur. C’est dangereux, mais comme tout. Encore emmitouflé dans une mince couverture, un homme se lance dans une grande supplique à l’Union européenne. « Vous nous repoussez, d’accord, mais s’il vous plaît, arrêtez de nous punir. Arrêtez les violences. »

      La violence « supposée » de la police croate, toutes les personnes rencontrées qui sont revenues de la frontière disent en avoir fait l’expérience. Les estropiés qui « se sont fait mal » en tentant de traverser font désormais partie du paysage cantonal. Tant à Vučjak que dans les rues et les centres gérés par l’OIM. Comme Ghulem, 38 ans, croisé à Miral, le centre de Velika Kladusa, dans son fauteuil roulant. Lorsque ses amis l’ont ramené du « game » il y a un mois, incapable de tenir sur ses jambes, les médecins ont fait une radio. Mais on ne lui a jamais communiqué les résultats. Il peut légèrement les bouger maintenant, pas plus. Il a mal, surtout le soir. C’était sa première tentative. Un seul coup de matraque sous les genoux. Il y pense tout le temps. Des migrants racontent que la police tape toujours plus dur sur les Pakistanais – majoritaires en ce moment – sans qu’on sache pourquoi.

      Naeem était presque en Italie, lorsque la police slovène l’a intercepté et remis aux forces croates. Retour à la montagne. Le bâton a frappé tellement fort qu’il a creusé des trous dans la chair. Sa jambe a doublé de volume avec l’infection. Un mois plus tard, les plaies suintent encore à travers les pansements. Il a de la chance, il a accès à un docteur.
      Histoires de disparitions

      Contactée, la Commission européenne assure prendre la situation très au sérieux et attend que la Croatie la « tienne informée ». Fin 2018, Bruxelles débloquait une enveloppe de 6,8 millions d’euros pour permettre à la Croatie de renforcer le contrôle de ses frontières – condition pour une intégration future du pays dans l’espace Schengen – « dans le respect du droit de l’Union européenne ». Outre l’achat de matériel, la création de nouveaux postes-frontières et le renforcement des équipes, l’argent devait financer un « monitoring indépendant », censé essentiellement passer en revue les procédures en place. Quant aux violences policières et au déni d’asile, la Croatie « s’est engagée à enquêter sur toute allégation de mauvais traitement de migrants et réfugiés à la frontière ». Le ministère de l’Intérieur croate n’a pas donné suite à nos requêtes (refusant par ailleurs l’accès à un centre d’accueil de Zagreb).
      Quotidien de migrant

      Le monitoring se fait surtout du côté des ONG. Une poignée d’organisations actives dans les Balkans alimente continuellement le Border Violence Monitoring de rapports d’entretiens menés avec des migrants, souvent complétés de rapports médicaux corroborant les témoignages. De quoi conforter l’idée d’un usage systématique de la violence incluant torture par le froid, passage à tabac, destructions des biens et vêtements et, dans certains cas, des morsures de chiens, os brisés par des coups de bâton…

      L’angle mort pour l’heure, ce sont les disparitions. Dans les camps circulent de nombreuses histoires de noyade lors de la traversée de la Glina, la rivière qui sépare la Bosnie de la Croatie. Mais elles restent quasi impossibles à documenter. Alertées par les migrants, les ONG ont amené (poussé) la police bosnienne à découvrir trois corps – dont un dans la rivière – depuis le mois de septembre, induisant ainsi l’ouverture d’enquêtes. Depuis son lit superposé dans l’immense dortoir de Miral, un garçon essaie de se faire entendre, cherche du regard un Pakistanais capable de traduire. « S’il vous plaît, mes amis, ils sont restés là-bas. » Quatre jours plus tôt, il a laissé quatre compagnons dans les bois, à proximité de la frontière slovène, raconte-t-il. « Ils ont mangé des baies empoisonnées. Ils ne se sont pas réveillés. » Les informations lui manquent, il n’a pas de données GPS. « C’est près d’un village. S’il vous plaît. Il faut les aider. »

      Déni d’asile

      L.K.

      D’après les témoignages de migrants et d’organisations locales, de nombreux cas de refoulements se feraient depuis les commissariats de police croates, seuls endroits où les personnes peuvent déclarer leur intention de demander l’asile. « Il est déjà arrivé que des personnes viennent directement dans nos locaux, qu’on les renvoie vers les commissariats… et qu’elles se retrouvent en Bosnie le lendemain », raconte Tajana Tadic, de l’association citoyenne Are you Sirious. « Ça nous met dans une situation compliquée. C’est délicat de demander aux gens de faire confiance une autorité dont ils ont peur, tout en sachant qu’ils ont de bonnes raisons de se méfier. »

      La Croatie, cela dit, accueille des demandeurs d’asile. Des familles surtout. Médecins du Monde y assure le screening médical et les consultations psychologiques. « On constate essentiellement des maladies de peau, des blessures traumatiques et des problèmes respiratoires. Côté psychologique, leur esprit est encore tourné vers la route, l’urgence d’avancer. Ce n’est qu’après quelque temps que les problèmes apparaissent, quand ils sortent du “mode survie” », explique une psychologue. « On voit des symptômes dépressifs, des crises de panique, de l’anxiété, des troubles de stress post-traumatiques… »

      https://plus.lesoir.be/259302/article/2019-11-08/un-monde-de-murs-en-bosnie-la-matraque-et-les-poings-comme-frontiere
      #Vucjak #the_game #Cazin #Bihac #Vedika_Kladusa

  • Paradisi fiscali europei, il caso Ungheria. Tutti i numeri.

    Fa tappa in Ungheria “Fiume di denaro” (https://www.ilsole24ore.com/art/commenti-e-idee/2018-09-18/mcdonald-s-amazon-e-ronaldo-lussemburgo-pace-fiscale-tutti-105613_PRV.s), l’inchiesta dedicata ai paradisi fiscali europei condotta da Angelo Mincuzzi e Roberto Galullo. In occasione della pubblicazione di questa nuova puntata, Infodata torna a pubblicare i dati relativi a pressione fiscale e reddito.

    Mais...

    Per scoprire come questi dati contribuiscano a fare dell’Ungheria un paradiso fiscale, l’appuntamento è in edicola.

    –-> l’analyse sur la Hongrie comme paradis fiscal n’est pas en ligne, c’est à découvrir dans la version papier.

    https://www.infodata.ilsole24ore.com/2019/03/05/paradisi-fiscali-europei-fiume-denaro-arriva-ungheria
    #évasion_fiscale #fisc #paradis_fiscal #paradis_fiscaux #Hongrie #visualisation
    ping @marty @alaingresh