• Complicit of data surveillance tools? Bordering and education data tracking tools

    The University of #Sheffield has recently introduced an attendance monitoring app which tracks the location of students. Attendance monitoring was introduced in UK universities in order to fulfill the requirements around international student monitoring for the purposes of Home Office visa issuing status. While attendance monitoring, now in app form, is couched in the language of student wellbeing, monitoring and now tracking actually reflect the imperatives of government immigration monitoring.

    https://www.sheffield.ac.uk/migration-research-group/events/complicit-data-surveillance-tools-bordering-and-education-data-tracking
    #université #UK #Angleterre #frontières #surveillance #contrôles_frontaliers #Home_Office #app #hostile_environment #visas #géolocalisation #étudiants_étrangers #complicité

    • New tools available to support attendance monitoring

      New tools to support staff with attendance monitoring - following a successful pilot scheme - are being made available in the Faculty of Science.

      Staff across the Faculty will begin to use two tools to support attendance monitoring following a successful pilot undertaken in the previous academic year.

      The tools will support departments to efficiently collect attendance data in a transparent way that complies with UKVI and GDPR requirements, and supports greater consistency in the student experience across the University.

      The Digital Register app (used by students for data collection) will be supported by a new Attendance and Engagement Dashboard which shows - at a glance- where there may be attendance concerns, so that appropriate support can be offered to students.

      Dr Thomas Anderson, Director of Education in Chemistry, said: "It has been transformative for our administrative team in checking attendance of international students which they need to report for visa reasons - avoiding a great deal of paperwork and dealing with personal tutors directly. This has saved a significant amount of staff time.

      “The system has been excellent for easily being able to identify students at-a-glance who are serial non-attenders, allowing us to intervene before their situation becomes irrevocable.”

      More information about the tools are available on the web support pages. An online demo is also available that lasts just over two minutes.

      In preparation for teaching in semester one, lecturers should download the iSheffield app from the Apple App Store or Google Play store and look for the check in tile. Before each teaching event, a six-digit code will be accessible that lecturers will need to share with students. Students will then input this code into their sheffield app to register their attendance at their event.

      Jo Marriott, Deputy Faculty Director of Operations in the Faculty of Science, is overseeing the implementation of the tools in our departments and is keen to hear about your experiences as we move over to this new way of attendance monitoring. Questions, and details of any challenges you face, can also be directed to the wider development team at StudentProductTeam@sheffield.ac.uk

      https://www.sheffield.ac.uk/science/news/new-tools-available-support-attendance-monitoring

  • Sur le climat, les frontières, la subsistance, le soin et la lutte | Out of the Woods
    https://cabrioles.substack.com/p/sur-le-climat-les-frontieres-la-subsistance

    Ainsi, nous devons penser l’organisation contre le changement climatique en prenant en compte le fait qu’il est médiatisé par un monde dominé par le capital colonial et hétéropatriarcal. La violence est organisée et différenciée par ces structures, et c’est par la lutte contre ces structures qu’il nous sera possible de subsister. Nous pouvons nous faire une image précise de ce qui a toujours été fait dans les luttes contre les catastrophes — des luttes reposant sur le soin, la reproduction sociale et l’hospitalité. Ce sont ces choses qui ont toujours permis aux gens de survivre aux catastrophes. Même si les choses vont de pis en pis, ça ne s’arrête pas là ; il y a toujours de la place pour la lutte collective.

    Out of the Woods est un collectif international de recherche partisane qui s’attelle, depuis 2014, à penser la #crise_écologique dans une perspective communiste, décoloniale, féministe et queer.

    · Notes de Cabrioles : Les éditions Présence(s) ont récemment traduit et publié L’Utopie Maintenant ! Perspectives communistes face au désastre écologique [https://presences-editions.me/utopie-maintenant ], le receuil des écrits d’Out the Woods, un collectif dont les analyses et perspectives résonnent particulièrement avec le travail que nous avons mené ici. Cette publication est importante et riche de la variété des thèmes abordés. L’entretien qui suit, réalisé en 2017, en est extrait. Nous remercions chaleureusement les éditions Présence(s) de nous avoir confié cette publication ·

    #présent_catastrophique #covid #écologie #migrants_climatiques #climat #racisme #environnementalisme #frontière #nécropolitique #expertise_populaire #dystopies #luttes #communisme_de_désastre #planification_fugitive #soin #reproduction_sociale #hospitalité #travail_reproductif #traitre #indigène #Terre_cyborg #nation_indigène

    • Ce à quoi nous devons résister ici, c’est au romantisme colonial occidental — il faut absolument le détruire, et il ne s’agit pas d’une sorte de problème littéraire abstrait, il est ce qui impulse une grande partie du mouvement écologiste au Royaume-Uni à l’heure actuelle. Il existe encore un imaginaire populaire d’une sorte de nature originelle que l’on retrouve aussi bien chez les membres de la Société royale pour la protection des oiseaux (Royal Society for the Protection of Birds) que chez les militants écologistes purs et durs, et il faut à tout prix le refuser. Et dans le même temps, nous devons nous assurer de ne pas devenir des technofuturistes prêts à embrasser l’idée d’une invasion technologique de tout ce qui existe, sans tenir compte du paradigme colonial et du développement de la technologie européenne comme arme et arbitre du « progrès » colonial. D’un certain point de vue, nous sommes ici coincés entre le marteau et l’enclume, entre l’idéalisation de la wilderness et l’idéalisation de la technologie, aussi néfastes l’une que l’autre.

      Mérite un dialogue avec l’œuvre de Charbonneau, qu’illes ne connaissent peut-être pas.

      une adhésion à la possibilité antinationaliste d’une Terre cyborg — qui ne nie pas en même temps la possibilité d’une nation indigène — est le genre de contradiction sur lequel nous devons travailler

      Par contre je ne sais pas ce qu’illes entendent pas là, ayant parlé plusieurs fois au cours de la conversation d’écologie cyborg (mmmh ?) sans définir ce que c’est (seulement « voir le chapitre XXX plus loin »). Donc soit faut lire le bouquin en entier, soit faut trouver une explication ailleurs du concept et de ce que ça implique.

  • Il ministero dell’Interno condannato a risarcire un respinto a catena in Bosnia

    Il Tribunale di Roma ha accertato l’illegittimità delle “riammissioni” al confine orientale, ricostruendo il “nesso causale” tra respingimenti e trattamenti inumani. Il Viminale deve farsi carico del danno inflitto a un cittadino pakistano richiedente asilo. Decisivo il lavoro di rete tra attivisti, Ong e avvocati. Una decisione attualissima

    Il ministero dell’Interno è stato condannato dal Tribunale di Roma a pagare 18.200 euro a titolo di risarcimento nei confronti di A., cittadino originario del Pakistan in fuga dal Paese, per averlo prima fermato a Trieste e poi respinto in Slovenia e a catena verso la Croazia e la Bosnia ed Erzegovina. Nonostante avesse manifestato la volontà di domandare protezione internazionale. Cento euro per ogni giorno trascorso tra la “riammissione” in Slovenia avvenuta a metà ottobre 2020 e il rientro in Italia nell’aprile 2021, come prevede la giurisprudenza comunitaria e nazionale su casi assimilabili.

    La decisione della giudice Damiana Colla del 9 maggio è estremamente rilevante non soltanto perché “accerta e dichiara l’illegittimità” delle riammissioni informali attive da parte italiana ma soprattutto perché inchioda l’”evidente nesso di causalità” tra l’operato della polizia italiana e il “danno subito” da A.. “La lesione del diritto d’asilo e i trattamenti inumani -scrive infatti la giudice- sono stati la diretta conseguenza della riammissione informale del ricorrente in Slovenia da parte delle autorità di frontiera di Trieste”.

    La decisione ottenuta dalle avvocate Caterina Bove e Anna Brambilla dell’Asgi, commenta la stessa Associazione per gli studi giuridici sull’immigrazione, “è stata il frutto di un lavoro di rete che ha visto coinvolti diversi soggetti attivi nel contrasto alle violenze verso le persone in movimento attivi lungo la rotta balcanica, tra i quali la rete RiVolti ai Balcani (in particolare Gianfranco Schiavone e Agostino Zanotti), la giornalista Elisa Oddone, la Ong ‘Lungo la rotta balcanica’, l’associazione Pravni center za varstvo človekovih pravic in okolja – Legal Centre for the Protection of Human Rights and the Environment (Pic, in particolare Ursa Regvar), il progetto Medea dell’Asgi, Ics Ufficio Rifugiati, Linea d’ombra, il Centro per la Pace di Zagabria, Anela Dedic e tutti gli attivisti e attiviste che agiscono per la tutela per i diritti umani in Bosnia ed Erzegovina e lungo le rotte percorse dalla persone in transito”.

    Nuove ombre si allungano su una prassi che i governi europei intendono invece elevare sempre più a norma “guida” della brutale gestione delle frontiere, come dimostra l’accordo al Consiglio europeo Giustizia e Affari interni dello scorso 8 giugno sui regolamenti in tema di gestione dell’asilo e della migrazione e delle procedure.

    Non si tratta di un’ordinanza che guarda a un passato ormai superato o a una pagina triste nel frattempo voltata: se è vero infatti che l’Italia ha condotto i respingimenti verso la Slovenia per tutto il 2020 e li ha sospesi nel 2021, è noto che da fine 2022 il nuovo governo abbia annunciato di volerli riprendere (con “risultati” incerti di cui abbiamo già scritto). Il tutto nonostante il precedente dell’ordinanza cautelare del Tribunale di Roma a firma della giudice Silvia Albano, emessa nel gennaio 2021 a fronte del ricorso promosso sempre dalle avvocate e socie Asgi Caterina Bove e Anna Brambilla (la vicenda è ben raccontata nel film “Trieste è bella di notte” dei registi Andrea Segre, Stefano Collizzolli e Matteo Calore).

    La storia di A. ricostruita nella decisione di Roma è tanto forte quanto emblematica. La sua fuga dal Pakistan inizia nel 2018, quand’è ferito in un attacco del gruppo terroristico Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan. Sopravvissuto, e temendo ritorsioni da ambo le parti (estremisti ed esercito cui apparteneva), decide di scappare. Resta per un anno in Turchia e per tre volte prova a entrare in Grecia, nell’Unione europea. Al terzo tentativo riesce, attraversando poi la Macedonia del Nord, la Serbia e arrivando nell’estate 2019 in Bosnia ed Erzegovina.

    Per nove volte è respinto dalle polizie croate e per tre da quelle slovene. Il primo ottobre 2020, a “riammissioni informali attive” ormai a pieno regime da parte italiana, gli riesce il “game” che lo porterà a Trieste nella mattinata del 17 ottobre. Qui però alcuni militari lo fermano quasi subito insieme ad altre quattro persone. Finiscono tutti in una stazione di polizia dove sono visitati e gli vengono fatti firmare fogli non tradotti dal contenuto oscuro. A. riferisce però agli agenti di voler chiedere asilo ma questi lo “affidano” alla polizia slovena. Non ha niente in mano: “informale” vuol dire infatti respinto senza lo straccio di un provvedimento scritto, motivato, impugnabile, cioè senza convalida dell’autorità giudiziaria, senza diritto a un ricorso effettivo. A riprova di quanto sia basso e surreale il dibattito sul garantismo in Italia.

    È così che A., con l’etichetta fasulla di “cittadino extraeuropeo entrato irregolarmente” e non invece di richiedente asilo, si fa una notte in una stazione di polizia slovena e il giorno dopo si vede “consegnato alle autorità croate e da queste respinto in Bosnia con metodi violenti, comprese percosse”, sempre per citare il giudice di Roma.

    Alla fine della catena lo attende la Bosnia ed Erzegovina. Nel caso di A. è l’insediamento informale di Vedro Polje, poco distante da Bihać, nel Nord-Ovest del Paese. Per via delle “degradanti condizioni di vita al campo”, come si legge nell’ordinanza che ha condannato il Viminale, A. decide di riprovarci. Lì non può rimanere. Ce la fa, di nuovo, perché “frontiere chiuse” è uno slogan vuoto, e ad aprile del 2021 torna nell’Italia che lo aveva illegalmente respinto. Tre mesi prima, come detto, la giudice Albano del Tribunale di Roma aveva già sanzionato il ministero dell’Interno per le stesse riammissioni (caso specifico diverso, naturalmente). A., memore del precedente respingimento, abbandona in fretta Trieste e raggiunge Brescia. Il 10 maggio fa quella domanda d’asilo che gli era stata negata dalla polizia italiana qualche mese prima e a tre giorni da Natale si vede riconoscere lo status di rifugiato. Ma non gli suona come un lieto fine quanto lo sprone a chieder giustizia per quel respingimento illegale subìto.

    Il 31 dicembre 2021 fa perciò ricorso. Il ministero dell’Interno si costituisce in giudizio il 27 settembre 2022 sostenendo che no, non si sarebbe trattato di un’espulsione collettiva vietata dal diritto internazionale ed europeo, che l’intera procedura si sarebbe svolta nel rispetto dei diritti umani fondamentali delle persone coinvolte, che la pratica sarebbe stata pienamente legittima e che il danno subito dal ricorrente (cioè A.) non sarebbe stato dimostrato.

    Il Tribunale di Roma dà però torto a Roma e ragione ad A. e alle avvocate Bove e Brambilla, facendo così squagliare la tesi difensiva del Viminale come il sole fa con la neve. “Il trattamento che il ricorrente ha descritto di aver subito da parte delle autorità di frontiera italiane al momento del suo primo ingresso a Trieste […] è stato pienamente provato in giudizio”, scrive la giudice Colla. Dalla manifestazione della volontà di chiedere protezione alla presa in consegna da parte delle autorità slovene. È documentata anche la catena: la detenzione in Slovenia al Centro per stranieri di Veliki Otok, nella Postumia (Carniola interna), e la successiva riammissione in Croazia. Fino alla Bosnia. Nessun alibi quindi per il Viminale, che della mancata prova dell’arrivo in Italia dei respinti ne ha fatto fino a oggi un leitmotiv. Questa volta non gli è riuscito nascondere la mano.

    Nella “jungle” di Vedro Polje, dove si trova a inizio 2021, A. ha per fortuna incontrato la giornalista Elisa Oddone e l’operatore sociale Diego Saccora dell’associazione “Lungo la rotta balcanica” (e tra le anime della rete RiVolti ai Balcani). Oddone, che stava curando un reportage per Al Jazeera ed NPR, raccoglie la testimonianza di A. e fa da primo contatto-ponte con le avvocate Bove e Brambilla. Anche Saccora confermerà in Tribunale più incontri con A.. A Vedro Polje infatti l’operatore sociale e ricercatore sul campo portava assistenza e beni di prima necessità. Non solo: lo accompagna di persona presso uno studio notarile di Bihać “per conferire mandato agli attuali difensori al fine di esperire ricorso avverso la riammissione in Slovenia”. A dimostrazione che il supporto incisivo alle persone in transito calpestate dai governi europei alle frontiere può assumere le forme più svariate, e che l’aiuto più distante dalla solidarietà istituzionalizzata può passare persino dalla ceralacca di un notaio. Quante pagine gravi e paradossali faranno scrivere ancora le politiche europee?

    Oddone e Saccora raccontano per filo e per segno al giudice le condizioni proibitive in cui si trovava all’epoca A. insieme ad altri. Riparati nei boschi, con la temperatura fino a venti gradi sotto zero di un inverno bosniaco, senz’acqua, senza accoglienza per via della chiusura dei due campi locali più grandi, praticamente senza cibo, stretti tra “ronde” di cittadini locali ostili e “possibili furti da parte di altri gruppi di richiedenti asilo, alla ricerca di quanto necessario alla sopravvivenza”.

    Secondo il Tribunale di Roma la riammissione “informale” di A. da parte dell’Italia avrebbe “contraddetto” le “norme di rango primario, costituzionale e sovranazionale, le quali, evidentemente, non possono essere derogate da un accordo bilaterale intergovernativo (del 1996, ndr) non ratificato con legge”.

    “La Direttiva 2008/115/CE non legittima affatto, anzi contrasta con la descritta pratica di riammissione informale posta in essere dal governo italiano -chiarisce la giudice Colla-. Infatti, sebbene tale direttiva (al suo art. 6, par. 3) consenta agli Stati membri di riammettere nello Stato confinante di provenienza senza una specifica decisione di rimpatrio, qualora sussistano accordi bilaterali tra gli Stati interessati già vigenti alla data di entrata in vigore della direttiva stessa (essendo tali accordi invece non più consentiti nella vigenza della stessa), tuttavia, nell’esecuzione dell’accordo, lo Stato italiano è comunque vincolato dalla normativa interna anche costituzionale (art 13 Cost.), nonché dal diritto sovranazionale, alla stregua del quale lo Stato ha il dovere di accertare la situazione concreta nella quale la persona riammessa verrà a trovarsi, con particolare riferimento all’eventualità di una violazione dei suoi diritti fondamentali (che si prospettava nel caso di specie secondo le informazioni largamente disponibili). Soprattutto poi, la riammissione informale non può mai essere applicata nei confronti di una persona che manifesti l’intenzione di chiedere asilo, come nella specie accaduto”.

    Oltre al regolamento 604/2013 (Dublino III), l’Italia, nella foga di respingere, avrebbe persino violato lo stesso accordo bilaterale con la Slovenia. L’articolo due prevede infatti che ciascuna parte, su richiesta dell’altra, “si impegna a riammettere sul proprio territorio il cittadino di uno Stato terzo che non soddisfa le condizioni di ingresso o di soggiorno nel territorio dello Stato richiedente, non potendosi evidentemente considerare in tale situazione chi abbia espresso la volontà di chiedere protezione”. Proprio come A..

    A titolo di aggravante per le autorità italiane, segnala poi il Tribunale elencando corposa bibliografia, c’è anche il fatto che queste erano “perfettamente” a conoscenza -“o almeno trovandosi nella condizione di avere perfetta conoscenza”- “delle violazioni cui i respinti sarebbero stati esposti in Slovenia”, così come in Croazia, per non parlare delle condizioni orribili in Bosnia ed Erzegovina, denunciate anche dalla commissaria per i diritti umani del Consiglio d’Europa Dunja Mijatović.

    A maggior ragione dopo le tredici pagine dell’ordinanza del Tribunale di Roma nessuno potrà dire “non sapevo”. Nel buio spicca il “lavoro di rete per contrastare le violazioni”, come lo chiamano le avvocate Bove e Brambilla. “La decisione è un importante risultato non solo perché ribadisce l’illegittimità della condotta posta in essere dalle autorità italiane -concludono- ma perché valorizza, anche attraverso l’assunzione della testimonianza diretta di Saccora e Oddone, l’impegno di tante persone che si impegnano a denunciare e contrastare le violazioni dei diritti delle persone in transito”.

    https://altreconomia.it/il-ministero-dellinterno-condannato-a-risarcire-un-respinto-a-catena-in

    #justice #Italie #frontière_sud-alpine #Slovénie #frontières #migrations #asile #réfugiés #condamnation #refoulements #refoulements_en_chaîne #push-backs #tribunal #réadmissions #Trieste #réadmissions_informelles_actives #Bihać #Bihac #Vedro_Polje #Veliki_Otok #Croatie #Bosnie #Bosnie-Herzégovine #forêt #hostile_environment #environnement_hostile #accord_bilatéral

    –—

    ajouté à la #Métaliste sur les #refoulements_en_chaîne sur la #route_des_Balkans:
    https://seenthis.net/messages/1009117

  • ’Police come for us at night’: Belgrade, a crucial but hostile layover city for migrants on the Balkan route

    Serbia’s capital Belgrade serves as a layover for many migrants on the Balkan route. However, the hundreds of Syrian, Afghan or Moroccan migrants passing through every day only have two accommodation options: an overcrowded and remote camp, or the streets and parks of the city.

    Achraf takes a pinch of tobacco from the plastic wrapper. Carefully, he spreads it on a thin, translucent sheet of paper, and moistens the edges. The cigarette is rolled then lit, he takes a long puff, which forms a halo of white smoke around him. His gaze lands haphazardly on the horizon. The young man from Casablanca looks exhausted. It has been two years since he fled Morocco, three months since he left Turkey and two days since he arrived in Belgrade. A large hole on each one of his sneakers reveals his black socks.

    In the Serbian capital Belgrade, he kills time with three other Moroccan migrants, Mohsen, Osman and Amine, on the concrete stairs of the old main train station which has long been falling into disuse. Once the small group has collected some money, which they say will be “soon”, they plan to take the road to northern Serbia in order to reach countries in Central Europe, from where will go to France or Spain.

    The Balkan route, which for many migrants begins in Turkey, has seen an spike this year. According to estimates by the Belgrade-based NGO Klikaktive, almost 90,000 people have entered Serbia since the beginning of 2022, compared to 60,338 for all of 2021, according to combined data from UN refugee agency UNHCR and the Commissariat for Refugees and Migration of the Republic of Serbia (KIRS).

    For the migrants who have chosen to cross Serbia rather than Bosnia, another country along the Balkan route, Belgrade is a necessary layover city because of its central location. Taxis or buses coming from the south stop in the capital, while others go north toward the Hungarian and Romanian borders. The layover allows migrants to pause from their journey for a few days and plan the rest of their trip.
    ’Slapping, kicking and bludgeoning’

    The capital, however, is not a good place to rest. The only reception center in the region, located 30 kilometers away in the city of Obrenovac, is at capacity. On October 13, more than 300 people were camping in front of the center, including 16 unaccompanied minors. Numerous migrants prefer the rare green spaces of Belgrade, like the small park next to the old train station and the bus station.

    At dusk, small groups of people settle with their backpacks on the withered grass before spending the night there. No one lies down on the benches which line the small path, some of which are missing wooden pallets. A small newspaper stand at the park’s entrance offers migrants the possibility to recharge their phones for a few Serbian dinars.

    To eat and drink, Achraf and his traveling companions rely on locals, who gave them some food yesterday. “The police come for us at night, so we return here. At the station, they leave us alone.” It is impossible for the young Moroccans to find refuge inside the station: The doors of the imposing yellow building, which the municipality wishes to transform into a museum, is kept locked.

    Sleeping outside is an additional ordeal for these migrants, who are weakened by the first part of their journey. Before arriving in Belgrade, many became victims of violence on the borders of Europe: between Greece and Turkey, or between Serbia and Bulgaria. “When the police catch people there, they beat them up. A friend of mine was hit so hard on his head, he later went crazy,” says Achraf.

    Migrants and NGOs regularly denounce the violent pushbacks at the Bulgarian border with Turkey. Last May, Human Rights Watch reported that “Bulgarian authorities beat, rob, strip and use police dogs to attack Afghans and other asylum seekers and migrants, and then push them back to Turkey without any formal interview or asylum procedure”.

    At the end of 2021, the Bulgarian branch of the Helsinki Committee recorded 2,513 pushbacks from Bulgaria, involving almost 45,000 people. Many pushbacks have also occurred further south, on the border between Serbia and North Macedonia, where Serbia built a barbed wire fence in 2020.

    According to the latest data published by authorities on the subject, Serbia prevented more than 38,000 crossing attempts at its southern border in the same year. The deportations were “often very violent” and included “slaps, kicks, blows with rubber sticks, insults and threats”, says Nikola Kovačević, a human rights lawyer.

    ’People come every day’

    In order to find solace in the Serbian capital, migrants stop at the Wash Centre, located five minutes away from the bus station. Opened in 2020 by the Collective Aid association, it allows migrants to take a shower, wash their belongings and drink a cup of tea or coffee. On this cool and sunny October morning, about 15 people have gathered in front of the small building. Seated inside, Karim, a former police officer from Kabul with his hair in disarray, rubs his eyes before picking up a plastic cup of steaming tea.

    Today, he came to pick up a few clothes that Collective Aid donates to migrants when the NGO has enough in stock. “I don’t have any money at the moment, so I’m glad they gave me this today,” Karim says, pointing to his gray jogging pants.


    “It’s busy all day here at the moment,” Claudia Lombardo, who runs the Wash Centre with three other volunteers, told InfoMigrants. “Since June, between 70 and 80 people come to take a shower every day, and we run 30 washing cycles.” The center also offers visitors a small place where people can shave and clean themselves. Sanitary products for women are also provided. Moreover, migrants can take a shower every afternoon for an hour.

    At a small counter in front of the washing machines, which are stacked on top of one another, a tall young man opens a canvas backpack and pulls out some clothes. Mohamed, 30, has come to Belgrade for the second time in six weeks.

    The young Syrian tried to enter Romania from Majdan in the North of Serbia six times. Each time, the Romanian border guards violently pushed him back and stole his savings, he said. “I couldn’t stand the situation there anymore so I came back here to rest a little.” He has been sleeping at the Obrenovac camp the last two nights, where “the mattresses are infested with insects.”

    During the day, he comes to the Wash Centre, a place he knows well. “I discovered this place during my first visit to the city. When I arrived here [after leaving Turkey and crossing Greece, Albania and Kosovo], I was exhausted and sick. I wanted to buy medicine but no pharmacy would let me in,” he recalls, as his green eyes are widening.

    “I was wandering in the street when I came across the Wash Centre by chance. I found showers there and people I could talk with. It was liberating. They took care of me a little bit.”

    http://www.infomigrants.net/en/post/44311/police-come-for-us-at-night-belgrade-a-crucial-but-hostile-layover-cit
    #hostile_environment #hostile_city #migrations #asile #réfugiés #villes #environnement_hostile #ville_hostile #Serbie #Balkans #route_des_Balkans #SDF #sans-abri #Wash_Centre #Collective_Aid #solidarité

    ping @karine4

  • #Gérald_Darmanin veut rendre « impossible » la vie des étrangers soumis à une obligation de quitter le territoire

    Les circonstances de la mort de la petite #Lola et le profil de la suspecte, de nationalité algérienne et sous le coup d’une #obligation_de_quitter_le_territoire_français (#OQTF), ont suscité de vives critiques à droite et à l’extrême droite. Si les parents de l’enfant ont regretté les tentatives de récupération politique de ce terrible drame, les discussions politiques se poursuivent. Ce jeudi, le ministre de l’intérieur a annoncé l’intention du gouvernement de rendre « impossible » la vie des étrangers faisant l’objet d’une OQTF.

    « Nous avons un travail à faire pour rendre impossible la vie des OQTF en France » dans le futur projet de #loi sur l’immigration, a déclaré Gérald Darmanin sur France Inter, en soulignant comme exemple le fait qu’« aujourd’hui quelqu’un qui fait l’objet d’une OQTF peut encore avoir un #logement_social ». « Un étranger arrivé légalement sur le sol [français] et qui perd son statut, devenant irrégulier, ne doit plus pouvoir garder son logement social », a insisté l’entourage du ministre.

    « Un droit trop complexe » pour expulser

    La #mesure_d’expulsion, dite OQTF, fait l’objet de polémiques récurrentes, notamment sur son taux d’application réel que le gouvernement veut augmenter à l’aide de la loi. Cette polémique a été ravivée depuis le meurtre sauvage de Lola. Sur ce sujet, le ministre de l’Intérieur a déploré un « droit trop complexe pour expulser un étranger en situation irrégulière, avec jusqu’à douze recours administratifs et judiciaires ».

    Selon lui, « plus de la moitié » des 120.000 OQTF prises ne sont pas exécutoires à cause de #recours_administratifs. Le projet de loi à venir prévoit de diviser par trois ce nombre possible de recours, de douze à quatre, a expliqué Gérard Darmanin, en prévoyant sur ce sujet « un grand débat parlementaire très compliqué ». Le gouvernement envisage par ailleurs de « lever les protections pour un certain nombre d’étrangers », a dit le ministre en citant la nécessité de mettre fin au système de #double_peine, qui voit un étranger condamné devoir purger sa peine sur le territoire avant son expulsion.

    Une situation « déjà » impossible

    La suppression de cette mesure permettrait selon lui « d’expulser 4.000 étrangers délinquants supplémentaires par année ». Rendre la vie « impossible » aux étrangers en situation irrégulière, « c’est déjà le cas actuellement », dénonce Mélanie Louis, responsable des questions d’expulsions à l’association La Cimade, pour qui les mesures du projet de loi vont faire rompre la France avec « l’Etat de droit ».

    Selon Mélanie Louis, il est d’ailleurs « complètement faux » qu’une personne sous le coup d’une OQTF ait droit à un logement social en France : « ces personnes bénéficient simplement du droit, inconditionnel, à une place d’#hébergement_d’urgence via le 115 [le numéro d’urgence dédié aux sans-abri], mais dans aucun cas à un HLM ».

    « 100 % d’application » pour les expulsions

    Jeudi soir, le président Emmanuel Macron a dit vouloir « réformer en profondeur les règles, nos lois, pour simplifier les procédures » d’expulsion, à l’occasion d’une nouvelle #loi_sur_l’asile_et_l’immigration qui doit être présentée « On va durcir les règles » pour « aller à ces 100 % » d’application des obligations de quitter le territoire français, des #procédures_d’expulsion dont moins de 10 % seulement sont exécutées. « au premier semestre de l’année prochaine ».

    « On va durcir les règles » pour « aller à ces 100 % » d’application des obligations de quitter le territoire français, des procédures d’expulsion dont moins de 10 % seulement sont exécutées.

    https://www.20minutes.fr/politique/4007487-20221027-darmanin-veut-rendre-impossible-vie-etrangers-soumis-obli

    #Darmanin #Gérard_Darmanin_comme_Theresa_May #hostile_environment #environnement_hostile #asile #migrations #réfugiés #instrumentalisation #sans-papiers #rendre_la_vie_impossible #expulsions #renvois #durcissement

    ping @karine4 @isskein

  • A clip from ’#We_Have_the_Right_to_be_Here'

    ’Hostile environment - to call it that is too small. Actually give it it’s big name: it’s the state’s 𝙘𝙤𝙢𝙥𝙡𝙞𝙘𝙞𝙩𝙮 in systematic, racist practice.’

    https://twitter.com/IRR_News/status/1337015894237655040

    –-----

    Screening “We have the right to be here” and Discussion

    ‘We Have the Right To Be Here’ is an oral history and analysis of some of the black and anti-racist movements of post-war Britain, told by three activists in an interview conducted by poet and educator, #Sam_Berkson. #Suresh_Grover, #Frances_Webber and #Colin_Prescod talk of their first-hand involvement in groundbreaking events of the British anti-racist and anti-fascist struggle. From the response to the racist murder of #Kelso_Cochrane in Notting Hill 1959, to #Asian_Youth_Movements in Southall in the 1970s, the case of the ‘#Bradford_12’ in 1981, to the #Stephen_Lawrence justice campaign in the 1990s, the activists tell how successful movements came together to challenge the state and the far-right. Talking from their personal experience at the heart of the struggle, Grover, Webber and Prescod analyse the dynamics of state racism and people’s resistance to it. They reflect on how victories have been won and how much more work there is to do.’The interview was conducted at the Institute of Race Relations in summer 2019, and contains footage, photographs and archive material from many of the struggles mentioned.

    https://maydayrooms.org/event/screening-we-have-the-right-to-be-here-and-discussion

    #racisme_systémique #racisme_d'Etat #UK #Angleterre #hostile_environment #environnement_hostile #complicité #histoire #résistance #luttes #interview #entretien

    ping @isskein @cede @karine4

  • Afghanistan investigates reports Iran guards forced migrants into river

    Afghanistan is investigating reports Afghan migrants drowned after being tortured and pushed into a river by Iranian border guards.

    The migrants were caught trying to enter Iran illegally from the western Herat province on Friday, according to local media.

    The migrants were beaten and forced to jump into a river by Iranian border guards, the reports said. Some of them are said to have died.

    Iran has dismissed the allegation.

    A foreign ministry spokesman said the incident took place on Afghan territory, not Iranian, and security guards denied any involvement.

    The number involved in the incident is unconfirmed but officials said dozens of migrants crossed the border, and at least seven people died with more still missing.

    A search party has been sent to retrieve the bodies of migrants from the river.
    The Afghan Human Rights Commission (AHRC) said local officials told it “Iranian security forces arrested a number of Afghan migrants seeking work who wanted to enter Iran”.

    “They were made to cross the Harirud river [at the Afghan-Iranian border], as a result a number of them drowned and some survived,” it added.

    Shir Agha, a migrant who witnessed the incident, told Reuters the Iranian guards “warned us that if we do not throw ourselves into the water, we will be shot”.

    Another Afghan migrant, Shah Wali, alleged that the Iranian guards “beat us, then made us do hard work”.

    “They then took us by minibus near to the river, and when we got there, they threw us into the river,” he added.

    About three million Afghans live in Iran, including refugees and wage labourers. Hundreds of Afghans cross into Iran every day to find work.

    There was a mass exodus of migrants returning to Afghanistan after the coronavirus outbreak in Iran, which has recorded almost 100,000 cases of the disease to date. Many are suspected to have brought coronavirus back across the border with them.

    But as Iran seeks to ease restrictions, Afghan migrants in search of work are crossing the country’s border in greater numbers again.

    Afghan officials have expressed concern over the incident in Herat province, risking a diplomatic row at a time of already strained relations over the coronavirus pandemic.

    In a tweet to Iranian officials, Herat’s governor Sayed Wahid Qatali wrote: “Our people are not just some names you threw into the river. One day we will settle accounts.”

    https://www.bbc.com/news/amp/world-asia-52523048?__twitter_impression=true
    #Iran #frontières #rivière #Herat #Iran #hostile_environment #weaponization #enviornnement_hostile #migrations #asile #réfugiés #décès #morts #mourir_aux_frontières #morts_aux_frontières

    • Afghanistan Probes Reports Iranian Guards Forced Migrants Into River

      Afghan officials were hunting on Sunday for Afghan migrants in a river bordering Iran after reports that Iranian border guards tortured dozens and threw them into the water to keep them out of Iran.

      Authorities in western Herat province said they retrieved 12 bodies from the Harirud river and at least eight other people were missing.

      The incident could trigger a diplomatic crisis between Iran and Afghanistan at a time when the coronavirus pandemic has seen an exodus of Afghan migrants from Iran, with many testing positive. Up to 2,000 Afghans cross the border from Iran, a coronavirus hotspot, into Herat each day.

      Afghanistan’s foreign ministry said on Saturday an inquiry had been launched. A senior official in the presidential palace in Kabul said initial assessments suggested at least 70 Afghans trying to enter Iran from Herat were beaten and pushed into the Harirud river on Saturday.

      Abbas Mousavi, a spokesman for Iran’s foreign ministry, said the “incident” took place on Afghan soil.

      “Border guards of the Islamic Republic of Iran denied the occurrence of any events related to this on the soil of our country,” he said in a statement on Sunday.

      Abdul Ghani Noori, governor of Herat’s Gulran district, said dozens of Afghan migrant workers were thrown into the river by members of the Iranian army.

      “Iranian armymen used shovels and gunshots to injure Afghan workers and threw them in water,” Noori told Reuters, adding that some of the injured workers were being treated in a hospital.

      Doctors at Herat District Hospital said they had received the bodies of Afghan migrants.

      “So far, five bodies have been transferred to the hospital. Of these bodies, it’s clear that four died due to drowning,” said Aref Jalali, head of the hospital. He added that two injured men were brought to the hospital on Sunday evening.

      The Taliban militant group, fighting to oust the Afghan government, said Iran should launch an investigation into the killings and “strictly punish the perpetrators”.

      “We have learnt that 57 Afghans on their way to the Islamic Republic of Iran for work were initially tortured by Iranian border guards and 23 of them later brutally martyred,” the Taliban said in a statement.

      Noor Mohammad said he was one of the Afghans caught by Iranian border guards as they were trying to cross into Iran in search of work.

      “After being tortured, the Iranian soldiers threw all of us in the Harirud river,” Mohammad told Reuters.

      Shir Agha, who said he also survived the violence, said at least 23 people thrown into the river were dead.

      Afghan officials that it was not the first time that Afghans had been killed by Iranian police guarding the 920-km (520-mile) border.

      As of Sunday, at least 541 coronavirus-infected people in Afghanistan were from Herat province, which recorded 13 deaths, with the majority of cases Afghan returnees from Iran, said Rafiq Shirzad, a health ministry spokesman in Herat.

      https://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2020/05/03/world/middleeast/03reuters-afghanistan-iran-migrants.html?searchResultPosition=3
      #noyade #torture #gardes-frontière #Harirud #armée

    • Afghanistan probes report Iran guards forced migrants into river

      Survivors say at least 23 of 57 people thrown by Iranian border guards into Harirud River drowned.

      Afghanistan has begun retrieving bodies of Afghan migrants from a river in a western province after reports that Iranian border guards tortured and threw Afghans into the river to prevent their entry into Iran.

      Afghanistan’s foreign ministry in a statement on Saturday said an inquiry had been launched and a senior official in the presidential palace in Kabul said initial assessments suggested that at least 70 Afghans who were trying to enter Iran from bordering Herat province were beaten and pushed into Harirud River.

      The Harirud River basin is shared by Afghanistan, Iran and Turkmenistan.

      Doctors at Herat District Hospital said they had received the bodies of Afghan migrants, some of whom had drowned.

      “So far, five bodies have been transferred to the hospital, of these bodies, its clear that four died due to drowning,” said Aref Jalali, head of Herat District Hospital.

      The Iranian consulate in Herat denied the allegations of torture and subsequent drowning of dozens of Afghan migrant workers by border police.

      “Iranian border guards have not arrested any Afghan citizens,” the consulate said in a statement on Saturday.

      Noor Mohammad said he was one of 57 Afghan citizens who were caught by Iranian border guards on Saturday as they tried to cross into Iran in search of work from Gulran District of Herat.

      “After being tortured, the Iranian soldiers threw all of us in the Harirud river,” Mohammad told Reuters News Agency.

      Shir Agha, who said he also survived the violence, said at least 23 of the 57 people thrown by Iranian soldiers into the river had died.

      “Iranian soldiers warned us that if we do not throw ourselves into the water, we will be shot,” said Agha.
      ’We will settle accounts’

      Local Afghan officials said it was not the first time Afghans had been tortured and killed by Iranian police guarding the 920km (520 mile) long border.

      Herat Governor Sayed Wahid Qatali in a tweet to Iranian officials said: “Our people are not just some names you threw into the river. One day we will settle accounts.”

      The incident could trigger a diplomatic crisis between Iran and Afghanistan at a time when the coronavirus pandemic has seen a mass exodus of Afghan migrants from Iran with many testing positive for COVID-19.

      Up to 2,000 Afghans daily cross the border from Iran, a global coronavirus hotspot, into Herat.

      As of Sunday, at least 541 infected people are from Herat province, which recorded 13 deaths, with the majority of positive cases found among Afghan returnees from Iran, said Rafiq Shirzad, a health ministry spokesman in Herat.

      https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/05/afghanistan-probes-report-iran-guards-forced-migrants-river-2005030926238

  • ‘Prejudiced’ Home Office refusing visas to African researchers

    Academics invited to the UK are refused entry on arbitrary and ‘insulting’ grounds.

    The Home Office is being accused of institutional racism and damaging British research projects through increasingly arbitrary and “insulting” visa refusals for academics.

    In April, a team of six Ebola researchers from Sierra Leone were unable to attend vital training in the UK, funded by the Wellcome Trust as part of a £1.5m flagship pandemic preparedness programme. At the LSE Africa summit, also in April, 24 out of 25 researchers were missing from a single workshop. Shortly afterwards, the Save the Children centenary events were marred by multiple visa refusals of key guests.

    There are echoes of the wider #hostile_environment across the Home Office, with MPs on a parliamentary inquiry into visa refusals hearing evidence that there is “an element of systemic prejudice against applicants”. In a letter in today’s Observer 70 senior leaders from universities and research institutes across the UK warn that “visa refusals for African cultural, development and academic leaders … [are] undermining ‘Global Britain’s’ reputation as well as efforts to tackle global challenges”.

    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/jun/08/home-office-racist-refusing-research-visas-africans
    #visas #UK #Angleterre #université #conférences #racisme

    Une sorte de #censure... je vais ajouter à cette métaliste :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/784716

  • A #Guide to the #Hostile_Environment

    The guide details the extent of the sprawling web of immigration controls now embedded at the heart of the UK’s public services and communities. It reveals the shattering impact these have had on vulnerable families, public servants and the wider public – and explains how people can take positive action to challenge them.

    Edited by Liberty, the guide contains contributions from nine leading campaigning organisations, including the National Union of Students, Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants and Doctors of the World.


    https://www.libertyhumanrights.org.uk/policy/policy-reports-briefings/guide-hostile-environment-border-controls-dividing-our-commun

    #UK #Angleterre #hébergement #logement #santé #éducation #travail #emploi

    voir aussi
    https://www.libertyhumanrights.org.uk/issue/report-a-guide-to-the-hostile-environment

  • Immigration Checks Used In Schools To De-Prioritise Children Of Undocumented Migrants

    Children in a line, outside the classroom door with their passport in hand, waiting one by one to be checked and let in. Teachers checking pupils’ passports, one by one, wondering when the right to free education started being determined by nationality and place of birth.

    This is not the start to a dystopian novel. This was the original vision of the Home Secretary in 2015, as revealed in leaked cabinet letters, for teachers to conduct immigration checks in the classroom.

    As part of the #hostile_environment master plan, immigration checks in schools were to be deployed to de-prioritise the children of undocumented migrants for school places.

    As this first plan didn’t gain sufficient consensus, the government folded and opted for a simpler and less ‘in the open’ option: collecting pupils’ nationality and country of birth data via the school census.

    https://rightsinfo.org/immigration-checks-in-schools-deployed-to-de-prioritise-children-of-undo
    #écoles #frontières_mobiles #migrations #enfants #enfance #sans-papiers #contrôles_frontaliers #UK #Angleterre #it_has_begun #nationalité

  • #Briançon, capitale des #escartons (1343-1789)

    Signée en 1343, la « #Grande_Charte_des_Libertés » entérinait l’#autonomie du territoire des Escartons, entre #Piémont et #Briançonnais. 675 ans avant que des militants n’y accueillent des migrants, ces vallées transalpines défendaient déjà une organisation basée sur l’#entraide et la #solidarité.

    https://www.franceculture.fr/emissions/la-fabrique-de-lhistoire/une-histoire-des-micro-etats-44-briancon-capitale-des-escartons-1343-1


    #Les_Escartons #histoire #Hautes-Alpes #république_des_Escartons #élevage #commerce #passage #alphabétisme #alpage #biens_communs #communaux #communauté #forêt #propriété_collective #corvées #entretien_du_territoire #solidarité #escarton #répartition_des_impôts #Italie #France #périphérie #Dauphiné #Royaume_de_France #liberté #impôts #monnaie #justice #Traité_d'Utrecht #frontières #ligne_de_partage_des_eaux #frontières_nationales #frontières_nationales #rencontre #nostalgie

    Anne-Marie Granet-Abisset, minute 30’35 :

    « 1713 est une date capitale pour le fonctionnement de l’Escarton, parce que c’est une décision liée à un traité qui est prise très loin, à Utrecht, et qui va décider de ce qui apparaît comme une zone de périphérie, une zone des marges, et donc, dans les négociations, la France ce qui lui paraît important, c’est la #vallée_de_Barcelonnette, et laisse au Duc de Savoie, ce qu’on va appelé les #vallées_cédées, c’est-à-dire l’escarton de Valcluse, Pragelato, l’#escarton_de_Château-Dauphin, et l’#escarton_de_Oulx. C’est le début de ce qui va être une évolution qui démarre au 18ème, mais qui va s’accentuer au 19ème, où la frontière va se marquer. ça va casser ce qui faisait la force d’un territoire qui fonctionnait de façon presque autonome, en tout cas qui fonctionnait dans une organisation, ce qui ne veut pas dire qu’ils s’aimaient tous, mais en tout cas ils s’entendaient tous pour défendre leurs intérêts. C’est aussi le moment où les militaires arrivent et vont redessiner la frontière : on partage, on dessine, on installe des fortifications en un temps où la frontière va se marquer. »

    Colette Colomban :

    "Puisqu’on va pour la première fois, en Europe, penser les frontières à partir de limites géographiques. Donc on va placer la frontière sur la ligne de partage des eaux, ce qui correspond à la volonté du #Pré_Carré_de_Vauban, c’est-à-dire, délimiter le territoire, les frontières de la France, de façon la plus régulière possible afin qu’elle soit plus facile à défendre et éviter ainsi des bouts de territoires qui s’enfoncent trop en territoire ennemi et beaucoup plus difficiles à défendre. On va du coup border des frontières à des cours d’eau, à des limites de partage des eaux. Les cols qui jusqu’alors étaient vraiment des passages, là deviennent des portes, des fermetures, des frontières. Mongenèvre se ferme à ce moment-là. Il faut imaginer que ça a été vraiment vécu comme un traumatisme, ce traité d’Utrecht, avec vraiment une #coupure de #liens familiaux, de liens amicaux, de liens commerciaux.

    Anne-Marie Granet-Abisset, minute 39’35 :

    Il y a une redécouverte des Escartons, parce que la charte est revenue dans la mairie de Briançon en 1985. Et dans ce cadre-là, les Escartons ont servi de légitimité pour refonder à la fois une #mémoire et une histoire qui a commencé d’abord du point de vue patrimonial, on a mis une association sur les anciens escartons, et puis maintenant, d’or en avant, les escartons sont même les noms de la recréation du Grand briançonnais qui reprend le Queyra, le Briançonnais, mais qui adhèrent des territoires qui ne faisaient pas partie de des anciens escartons. On est en train de reconstituer, en utilisant ce qui a été une avance sur l’histoire... on re-fabrique, on re-bricole une histoire en mettant en avant ce qui était la tradition, c’est-à-dire l’habitude d’#autonomie, la façon de s’auto-administrer, la volonté de garder la maîtrise du territoire, en même temps avec véritablement l’idée de fonctionner avec les vallées qui étaient les anciennes Vallées cédées. Donc les Escartons vont devenir un élément qui caractérise et qui redonne une #fierté à ces territoires considérés, pendant longtemps et notamment au 19ème, comme des territoires enclavés, comme des territoires arcaïques. Ces territoires ont souffert de cette vision qu’ils ont d’ailleurs totalement intégrée et qui fait que, les Escartons étaient un moyen de réaffirmer leur avance sur l’histoire. Leur avance sur l’histoire c’est le fait de constituer un territoire transfrontalier, qui fonctionne comme une région des Alpes à l’intérieur d’une Europe qui serait une Europe des régions"

    Gérard Fromm, 46’20 :

    "Ici on a été une zone de passage, beaucoup d’Italiens sont venus, ont passé le col de Mongenèvre et sont venus s’installer en France à une période où la vie était difficile en Italie. Donc il y a beaucoup de familles qui sont d’origine italienne. On est ici une zone de passage depuis longtemps. On est une zone de migration, donc, naturellement, on a retrouvé un certain nombre de choses. Les Italiens de l’autre côté, beaucoup parlent français, et puis il y a une culture qui est identique : regardez les églises, les clochers ont la même forme, les peintures murales dans les églises ont les mêmes origines. On a vraiment une continuité. Ces éléments-là font qu’aujourd’hui on a d’ailleurs une proximité avec nos amis italiens. On ne se rend pas compte, on est un peu au bout du monde pour les Français, sauf que leur bout du monde il est beaucoup plus loin... les Italiens c’est la porte à côté. Des Briançonnais vont à Turin, Turin c’est à une heure et quart d’ici. Aujourd’hui on a d’ailleurs une proximité avec nos amis italiens dans le cadre des programmes européens, mais aujourd’hui aussi par exemple avec les problèmes des migrants, ce sont des problèmes qu’on partage avec les communes de l’autre côté. On travaille en permanence avec les Italiens.

    Elsa Giraud, guide conférencière et historienne, 49’13 :

    « C’est le milieu dans lequel on vit, qui peut être un milieu hostile, qui est un milieu qui nécessite des connaissances, une habitude. Et si les Escartons sont nés et ont perduré pendant des siècles, c’est parce que nous sommes dans un territoire de passage, parce que nous sommes dans un territoire où on a des populations et des ressources différentes d’un côté et de l’autre. Donc il fallait des passages, des migrations saisonnières pour vivre dans ces montagnes qui ne vous nourrissent pas l’hiver, pour aller en plaine, pour échanger les produits d’un versant et de l’autre de la montagne. Et le point commun c’est ce besoin de se déplacer, de migrer. La géographie et le climat font qu’on est obligé de s’entraider et venir au secours de celui qui est en pleine montagne. Ici, si on ne connaît pas la montagne, en plein hiver on ne passe pas, on y reste. »

    #hostile_environment #environnement_hostile #entraide

    #tur_tur

    #ressources_pédagogiques

  • Breaking: #Canada Announces That Its Border Wall Is Already Finished | The Inertia
    https://www.theinertia.com/comedy/canada-announces-border-wall-finished

    In incredible news out of Canada, officials have happily announced that the country easily finished its own border wall in the past 21 days while everyone was distracted by the U.S. government shutdown. And it was a simple solution: one of the snowiest countries in the world used its overabundance of frozen water to create a border wall spanning nearly 4,000 miles from the shores of British Columbia in the west to New Brunswick in the east. The purpose? Keep weed-puffing, hard-drinking Americans seeking better times out of the country.

    “For years, Americans have crossed our borders to bypass repressive laws and governments in their own country, simply to have a better time, be it the drinking age limit or, more recently, to smoke weed legally,” announced Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. “Well, those benefits are for our citizens.”

    #mur #etats-unis

    Editor’s Note: If you didn’t figure out this was #satire within the first few sentences, shoot us a note and we’ll send someone to hit you over the head with a frying pan immediately.

  • The UK Border Regime

    Throughout history, human beings have migrated. To escape war, oppression and poverty, to make a better life, to follow their own dreams. But since the start of the 20th century, modern governments have found ever more vicious ways to stop people moving freely.

    The UK border regime includes the razor wire fences at #Calais, the limbo of the asylum system, and the open #violence of raids and deportations. Alongside the #Home_Office, it includes the companies running databases and detention centres, the media pushing hate speech, and the politicians posturing to win votes. It keeps on escalating, through Tony Blair’s war on refugees to Theresa May’s “#hostile_environment”, spreading fear and division.

    This book describes and analyses the UK’s system of immigration controls. It looks at how it has developed through recent history, the different actors involved, and how people resist. The aim is to help understand the border regime, and ask how we can fight it effectively.


    https://corporatewatch.org/new-book-the-uk-border-regime
    #livre #frontières #régime_frontalier #UK #Angleterre #limbe #barrières_frontalières #externalisation #France #renvois #expulsions #déportations #résistance #migrations #asile #réfugiés #détention_administrative #rétention #privatisation

    • France – Royaume-Uni : le plan d’action de lutte

      L’externalisation du contrôle de la frontière britannique sur le sol français est jalonnée de traités, arrangements, accords, déclarations conjointes. Dans la novlangue du nouveau monde, nous avons le « plan d’action de lutte contre l’activité des migrants dans la Manche ». Avec un nouveau chèque britannique.

      D’un côté de la Manche, le brexit qui prend l’eau. De l’autre un pouvoir ébranlé par la contestation des gilets jaunes. Entre les deux des exilé-e-s qui tentent de passer la frontière et d’accéder au territoire britannique.

      Les tentatives de passage de la frontière dans de petites embarcations ne sont pas nouvelles, mais étaient exceptionnelles, ou alors avec la complicité de plaisanciers ou de pêcheurs qui se faisaient de l’argent en faisant passer des exilé-e-s. Il y avait eu en 2016 plusieurs tentatives du département de la Manche vers les îles anglo-normandes (voir ici et là), et rarement du littoral du Nord et du Pas-de-Calais. Ce sont souvent des exilé-e-s iranien-ne-s qui sont impliqué-e-s dans ces tentatives.

      Depuis un an, elles se multiplient - le "plan d’action de lutte" mentionne 44 départ évités du côté français (ce qui ne comprend pas a priori les bateaux interceptés en mer) concernant 267 "individus". Elles rencontrent un certain écho médiatique, surtout au Royaume-Uni. Les gouvernements doivent donc montrer qu’ils font quelque chose. Et comme le phénomène dure déjà un peu, qu’ils ont aussi déjà fait quelque chose. Et puis c’est l’occasion de montrer que brexit ou pas la coopération sécuritaire entre les deux pays continue - contre "une menace à l’encontre des systèmes de contrôle aux frontières en France et au Royaume-Uni, dont l’intégrité est indispensable à la lutte contre la criminalité et le terrorisme" dit le texte - la doctrine est donc qu’il faut fermer les frontières de manière étanche pour se protéger.

      Mais sous le titre hyperbolique de "plan d’action de lutte" il n’y a à vrai dire pas grand-chose. Les patrouilles maritimes et aériennes, et terrestres du côté français, ont déjà été renforcées. Les mesures activées dans les accords précédents, qui eux-mêmes reprenaient largement des mesures plus anciennes, sont actives. Un financement de 7 millions d’euros est annoncé, mais près de la moitié provient d’un fonds déjà existant, la partie britannique n’apporte en fait que 3,6 millions supplémentaires. Une partie indéterminée de cet argent ira à un secteur économique qui vit sous perfusion d’agent public : la vidéosurveillance. Des caméras seront installées dans les ports et sur les plages.

      https://blogs.mediapart.fr/philippe-wannesson/blog/250119/france-royaume-uni-le-plan-d-action-de-lutte

  • University lecturers must remain educators, not border guards

    The increasingly stringent control of student migration by the Home Office is damaging both the integrity of our relationships as teachers with students and the future of our universities. It was for this reason that 160 academics signed a letter published in The Guardian against the ways in which this crackdown corrodes relationships of trust that are essential to learning.

    https://theconversation.com/university-lecturers-must-remain-educators-not-border-guards-23948

    #home_office #frontières #frontières_mobiles #université #UK #Angleterre #gardes_frontières (#flexibilisation_introvertie, pour utiliser un concept de Paolo Cuttitta)

    Article de 2014, mais qui reste de très forte actualité !

    • UK academics oppose visa monitoring regime for foreign staff

      UK academics oppose visa monitoring regime for foreign staff
      UK university leaders are being urged to review their attitudes towards foreign staff and students, following fresh reports of visa holders being “unfairly monitored” and even threatened with home visits by nervous administrators.

      Institutions say that efforts to record the whereabouts of international employees and students on sponsored visas are necessary to comply with Home Office regulations, but union representatives argue that the requirements are being misinterpreted and create a “hostile environment” for foreign workers.
      One foreign academic employed by the University of Birmingham told Times Higher Education that they had become “confused and scared” after being told that they must report their attendance weekly or “risk deportation”.

      “I feel like I am not trusted, that I can’t do my job, that I’m assumed [to be] a criminal,” said the academic, who chose to remain anonymous. “Being constantly monitored in this way makes me feel like I don’t really want to be here…if I had an opportunity somewhere else I would consider leaving the UK.”

      A letter issued by Birmingham’s human resources department to international staff and seen by THE states that any individual who fails to report their attendance as well as any time spent off campus on a weekly basis will have their “name passed to the UK Border Agency”.

      Failure to comply may result in “disciplinary action and/or withdrawal of your certificate of sponsorship, and thereby your eligibility to remain in the UK”.

      Birmingham had to operate “within the requirements set out by the Home Office”, a university spokesman said. “Our priority is ensuring that we are supporting staff to remain in the UK.”

      Meanwhile, staff at the University of Sussex launched a petition last week calling on vice-chancellor Adam Tickell to “end the hostile environment” found towards “migrants, people of colour and Muslims” on campus, which they said had been made worse as a result of “immigration monitoring”.

      The Sussex branch of the University and College Union said that managers at the institution had chosen to interpret Home Office guidelines in a needlessly stringent manner. “Staff and students are made aware that if they are not able to attest to their whereabouts for 80 per cent of the semester, they risk having their [immigration] status withdrawn,” a spokesman said. “This is not necessary."

      Those on Tier 2 and Tier 5 visas were at one stage told to “expect home visits” if they chose to work out of the office, but the university has since admitted that this approach is “not feasible”, the UCU spokesman added.

      An email sent from one head of department on 10 April informs Sussex staff they must have “complete records of their movements at any given time” recorded via “electronic calendars, so if auditors turn up at any given time we can point to it”.

      “I found this procedure extraordinary,” said one academic, “and I am sure there would be revolt if this were imposed on everyone in the department.”

      A University of Sussex spokeswoman said that Professor Tickell was aware of the petition, and had “already clarified with members of our community why and how the university needs to comply with statutory regulations”.

      “Our policies and procedures are informed by UK and EU legislation, statutory regulations and duties and best practice,” she added.

      Separately, staff at UCL have written to the institution’s president, Michael Arthur, expressing “serious concerns” over rules that require staff to have “physical check-ins” with international students every three weeks in order to monitor visa compliance.

      The policy takes up staff time “in bureaucracy that is irrelevant”, “builds a culture of mistrust” and creates “added pressure...at a time when we have increasing evidence about risks to student wellbeing and mental health”, the letter says.

      A Home Office spokeswoman said it remained “the responsibility of individual sponsors to develop their own systems to ensure they meet their reporting responsibilities”.

      https://www.timeshighereducation.com/news/uk-academics-oppose-visa-monitoring-regime-foreign-staff

    • ’National day of shame’ : #David_Lammy criticises treatment of Windrush generation

      Labour MP says situation has come about because of the hostile environment that begun under Theresa May, as he blames a climate of far-right rhetoric. People who came to the UK in the 1950s and 60s are now concerned about whether they have a legal right to remain in the country. The government has admitted that some people from the Windrush generation had been deported in error, as Theresa May appeared to make a U-turn on the issue Some Windrush immigrants wrongly deported, UK admits.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kfy1mDdNtEQ

    • Amber Rudd’s resignation letter in full and the Prime Minister’s response

      Amber Rudd has resigned as home secretary amid increasing pressure over the way the Home Office handled immigration policy.

      Her resignation came after leaked documents undermined her claims she was unaware of the deportation targets her officers were using.

      Downing Street confirmed Theresa May had accepted Ms Rudd’s resignation on Sunday night. She is the fifth cabinet minister to have left their position since the Prime Minister called the snap election in June 2017.

      https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/amber-rudd-resignation-letter-full-transcript-windrush-scandal-theres

    • Black history is still largely ignored, 70 years after Empire Windrush reached Britain

      Now, 70 years and three to four generations later, the legacy of those who arrived on the Windrush and the ships that followed is being rightly remembered – albeit in a way which calls into question how much their presence, sacrifices and contributions are valued in Britain.

      https://theconversation.com/black-history-is-still-largely-ignored-70-years-after-empire-windru
      #histoire #mémoire

    • Chased into ’self-deportation’: the most disturbing Windrush case so far

      As Amelia Gentleman reflects on reporting one of the UK’s worst immigration scandals, she reveals a new and tragic case.

      In the summer of 2013, the government launched the peculiarly named Operation Vaken, an initiative that saw vans drive around six London boroughs, carrying billboards that warned: “In the UK illegally? Go home or face arrest.” The billboards were decorated with pictures of handcuffs and the number of recent immigration arrests (“106 arrests last week in your area”). A line at the bottom adopted a softer tone: “We can help you to return home voluntarily without fear of arrest or detention.”

      The Conservatives’ 2010 manifesto promise to reduce migration to the tens of thousands had been going badly. It was time for ministers to develop new ways of scaring immigrants into leaving and for the government’s hostile environment policy to get teeth. More than 170,000 people, many of them living in this country legally, began receiving alarming texts, with warnings such as: “Message from the UK Border Agency: you are required to leave the UK as you no longer have the right to remain.”

      The hope was that the Home Office could get people to “self-deport”, frightening them into submission. In this, politicians appeared to have popular support: a YouGov poll at the time showed that 47% of the public approved of the “Go home” vans. The same year, Home Office vehicles began to be marked clearly with the words “Immigration Enforcement”, to alert people to the hovering presence of border guards.

      Operation Vaken ran for just one month, and its success was limited. A Home Office report later found that only 11 people left the country as a result; it also revealed that, of the 1,561 text messages sent to the government’s tip-off hotline, 1,034 were hoaxes – taking up 17 hours of staff time.

      Theresa May’s former adviser Nick Timothy later tried to argue that the vans had been opposed by the prime minister and were only approved while she was on holiday. But others who worked on the project insisted that May had seen the wording on the vans and requested that the language be toughened up. Meanwhile, the Immigration Enforcement vehicles stayed, with their yellow fluorescent stripes and black-and-white checks, a sinister presence circling areas of high migration. Gradually, the broader strategy of intimidation began to pay off. Some people were frightened into leaving.
      Guardian Today: the headlines, the analysis, the debate - sent direct to you
      Read more

      In my two years of reporting on what became known as the Windrush scandal, Joycelyn John’s experience was the most disturbing case I came across. Joycelyn arrived in London in 1963 at the age of four, travelling with her mother on a Grenadian passport as a British subject. She went to primary and secondary school in Hammersmith, west London, before working in hotels in the capital – including the Ritz and a Hilton.

      Some time around 2009, she lost her Grenadian passport, which contained the crucial stamp giving her indefinite leave to remain. She had trouble getting a new passport, because her mother had married and changed her daughter’s surname from Mitchell to John. Because she never registered the change, there was a discrepancy between Joycelyn’s birth certificate and the name she had used all her adult life. She spent several years attempting to sort out her papers, but by 2014, aged 55, she had been classified as living in Britain illegally. She lost her job and was unable to find new work. For a while, she lived in a homeless hostel, but she lost her bed, because the government does not normally fund places for people classified as illegal immigrants. She spent two years staying with relatives, sleeping on sofas or the floor.

      In that time, Joycelyn managed to gather 75 pages of evidence proving that she had spent a lifetime in the UK: bank statements, dentists’ records, medical files, tax records, letters from her primary school, letters from friends and family. But, inexplicably, this was not enough. Every letter she received from the Home Office warned her that she was liable to be deported to Grenada, a country she had left more than 50 years ago. She began to feel nervous about opening the door in case immigration officers were outside.

      A Home Office leaflet encouraging people to opt for a voluntary departure, illustrated with cheerful, brightly coloured planes and published about the same time as the “Go Home” vans were launched, said: “We know that many people living in the UK illegally want to go home, but feel scared of approaching the Home Office directly. They may fear being arrested and detained. For those returning voluntarily, there are these key benefits: they avoid being arrested and having to live in detention until a travel document can be obtained; they can leave the UK in a more dignified manner than if their removal is enforced.” This appeal to the desire for a dignified departure was a shrewd tactic; the idea of being forcibly taken away terrified Joycelyn, who saw the leaflets and knew of the vans. “There’s such stigma... I didn’t want to be taken off the plane in handcuffs,” she says. She was getting deeper into debt, borrowing money from a younger brother, and felt it was no longer fair to rely on him.

      When the hostile environment policy is working well, it exhausts people into submission. It piles up humiliations, stress and fear until people give up. In November 2016, Joycelyn finally decided that a “voluntary” departure would be easier than trying to survive inside the ever-tightening embrace of Home Office hostility. Officials booked her on a flight on Christmas Day; when she asked if she could spend a last Christmas with her brother and five sisters, staff rebooked her for Boxing Day. She was so desperate that she felt this was the best option. “I felt ground down,” she says. “I lost the will to go on fighting.”

      By that point, she estimated she must have attempted a dozen times to explain to Home Office staff – over the phone, in person, in writing – that they had made a mistake. “I don’t think they looked at the letters I wrote. I think they had a quota to fill – they needed to deport people.” She found it hard to understand why the government was prepared to pay for her expensive flight, but not to waive the application fee to regularise her status. A final letter told her: “You are a person who is liable to be detained... You must report with your baggage to Gatwick South Virgin Atlantic Airways check-in desk.” The letter resorted to the favoured Home Office technique of scaring people with capital letters, reminding her that in her last few weeks: “YOU MAY NOT ENTER EMPLOYMENT, PAID OR UNPAID, OR ENGAGE IN ANY BUSINESS OR PROFESSION.” It also informed her that her baggage allowance, after a lifetime in the UK, was 20kg – “and you will be expected to pay for any excess”.

      How do you pack for a journey to a country you left as a four-year-old? “I was on autopilot,” Joycelyn recalls. “I was feeling depressed, lonely and suicidal. I wasn’t able to think straight; at times, I was hysterical. I packed the morning I left, very last-minute. I’d been expecting a reprieve. I didn’t take a lot – just jeans and a few T-shirts, a toothbrush, some Colgate, a towel – it didn’t even fill the whole suitcase.” She had £60 to start a new life, given to her by an ex-boyfriend. She had decided not to tell her sisters she was going; she confided only in her brother. “I just didn’t want any fuss.” She didn’t expect she would ever be allowed to return to Britain.

      In Grenada, she found everything unfamiliar. She had to scrub her clothes by hand and struggled to cook with the local ingredients. “It’s just a completely different lifestyle. The culture is very different.” She was given no money to set her up and found getting work very difficult. “You’re very vulnerable if you’re a foreigner. There’s no support structure and no one wants to employ you. Once they hear an English accent – forget it. They’re suspicious. They think you must be a criminal if you’ve been deported.”

      Joycelyn recounts what happened to her in a very matter-of-fact way, only expressing her opinion about the Home Office’s consistent refusal to listen when I ask her to. But her analysis is succinct: “The way I was treated was disgusting.” I still find it hard to accept that the government threatened her until she felt she had no option but to relocate to an unfamiliar country 4,300 miles away. The outcome – a 57-year-old Londoner, jettisoned to an island off the coast of Venezuela, friendless and without money, trying to make a new life for herself – is as absurd as it is tragic.

      *

      In April 2018, the leaders of 52 countries arrived in London for the Commonwealth heads of government meeting. The Mall was decorated with flags; caterers at Buckingham Palace prepared for tea parties and state dinners. In normal times, this summit would have been regarded as a routine diplomatic event, heavy with ceremony and light on substance. But, with Brexit looming, the occasion was seen as an important opportunity to woo the countries on which Britain expected to become increasingly reliant.

      A week before the event, however, the 12 Caribbean high commissioners had gathered to ask the British government to adopt a more compassionate approach to people who had arrived in the UK as children and were never formally naturalised. “I am dismayed that people who gave their all to Britain could be discarded so matter-of-factly,” said Guy Hewitt, the Barbados high commissioner. “Seventy years after Windrush, we are again facing a new wave of hostility.”

      Hewitt revealed that a formal request to meet May had been declined. The rebuff convinced the Caribbean leaders that the British government had either failed to appreciate the scale and seriousness of what was happening or, worse, was aware, but did not view it as a priority. It smacked of racism.

      By then, I had been covering cases such as Joycelyn’s for six months. I had written about Paulette Wilson, a 61-year-old grandmother who had been detained by the Home Office twice and threatened with deportation to Jamaica, a country she had left half a century earlier; about Anthony Bryan, who after 50 years in the UK was wrongly detained for five weeks; and about Sylvester Marshall, who was denied the NHS radiotherapy he needed for prostate cancer and told to pay £54,000 for treatment, despite paying taxes here for decades. Yet no one in the government had seemed concerned.

      I contacted Downing Street on 15 April to ask if they could explain the refusal to meet the Caribbean delegation. An official called back to confirm that a meeting had not been set up; there would be other opportunities to meet the prime minister and discuss this “important issue”, she said.

      It was a huge mistake. An article about the diplomatic snub went on the Guardian’s front page and the political response was instantaneous. Suddenly, ministers who had shown no interest were falling over themselves to express profound sorrow. The brazen speed of the official turnaround was distasteful to watch. Amber Rudd, then the home secretary, spoke in parliament to express her regret. The Home Office would establish a new team to help people gather evidence of their right to be here, she announced; fees would be waived. The prime minister decided that she did, after all, need to schedule a meeting with her Caribbean colleagues.

      There were a number of factors that forced this abrupt shift. The campaigner Patrick Vernon, whose parents emigrated from Jamaica in the 50s, had made a critical connection between the scandal and the upcoming 70th anniversary of the arrival of the Empire Windrush at Tilbury Docks. A fortnight earlier, he had launched a petition that triggered a parliamentary debate, calling for an immigration amnesty for those who had arrived as British subjects between 1948 and 1971. For months, I had been describing these people as “Caribbean-born, retirement-age, long-term British residents”, a clunky categorisation that was hard to put in a headline. But Vernon’s petition succinctly called them the “Windrush generation” – a phrase that evoked the emotional response that people feel towards the pioneers of migration who arrived on that ship. Although it was a bit of a misnomer (those affected were the children of the Windrush generation), that branding became incredibly potent.

      After months of very little coverage, the BBC and other media outlets began to report on the issue. On 16 April, the Guardian reprinted the photographs and stories of everyone we had interviewed to date. The accounts were undeniable evidence of profound and widespread human suffering. It unleashed political chaos.

      *

      It was exciting to see the turmoil caused by the relentless publication of articles on a subject that no one had previously wanted to think about. Everyone has moments of existential doubt about whether what they do serves a purpose, but, for two weeks last April, the government was held to account and forced to act, demonstrating the enormous power of journalism to trigger change.

      At the Guardian’s offices in London, a team of reporters was allocated to interview the huge number of emerging Windrush voices. Politicians were contacted by constituents who had previously been nervous about giving their details to officials; they also belatedly looked through their constituency casebooks to see if there were Windrush people among their immigration caseload; finally, they began to speak up about the huge difficulties individuals were facing as a result of Home Office policy.

      Editors put the story on the front page, day after day. Any hope the government might have had of the issue quickly exhausting itself was dashed repeatedly by damaging new revelations. For a while, I was unable to get through my inbox, because there were too many unhappy stories about the government’s cruel, bureaucratic mishandling of cases to be able to read and process. Caroline Bannock, a senior journalist who runs the Guardian’s community team, created a database to collect people’s stories, and made sure that everyone who emailed got an answer, with information on where to go for advice and how to contact the Windrush Taskforce, set up by Rudd.

      I found the scale of the misery devastating. One morning, I came into work to find 24 messages on my answerphone from desperate people, each convinced I could help. I wanted to cry at my desk when I opened a letter from the mother of a young woman who had arrived in Britain from Jamaica in 1974, aged one. In 2015, after being classified as an illegal immigrant and sent to Yarl’s Wood detention centre, she had taken an overdose and died. “Without the time she spent in Yarl’s Wood, which we understand was extremely unpleasant, and the threat of deportation, my daughter would be alive today,” she wrote. The government had been aiming to bring down immigration at any cost, she continued. “One of the costs, as far as I am concerned, was my daughter’s life.”

      Alongside these upsetting calls and letters, there were many from readers offering financial support to the people we interviewed, and from lawyers offering pro bono assistance. A reader sent a shoebox full of chocolate bars, writing that he wanted to help reporters keep their energy levels up. At a time when the reputation of journalism can feel low, it was rewarding to help demonstrate why independent media organisations are so important.

      If the scene at the office was a smooth-running model of professionalism, at home it was chaos. I wrote until 2am and got up at 5am to catch up on reading. I tapped out so many articles over two weeks that my right arm began to ache, making it hard to sleep. My dictaphone overheated from overuse and one of its batteries exploded. I had to retreat entirely from family life, to make sure I poured out every bit of information I had. Shoes went missing, homework was left undone, meals were uncooked. There was an unexpected heatwave and I was aware of the arrival of a plague of ants, flies and fleas (and possibly nits), but there was no time to deal with it.

      I am married to Jo Johnson, who at the time was a minister in May’s government. As a news reporter, I have to be politically independent; I let him get on with his job and he doesn’t interfere in mine. Life is busy and mostly we focus on the day-to-day issues that come with having two children. Clearly, there are areas of disagreement, but we try to step around anything too contentious for the sake of family harmony.

      But the fact did not go unnoticed. One Sunday morning, Jo had to go on television to defend Rudd, returning home at lunchtime to look after the children so I could talk on the radio about how badly the government had got it wrong. I can see why it looks weird from the outside; that weekend it felt very weird. I had only one brief exchange about the issue with his brother Boris, who was then the foreign secretary, at a noisy family birthday party later in the year. He said: “You really fucked the Commonwealth summit.”

      *

      On 25 April, Rudd appeared in front of the home affairs select committee. She told MPs she had been shocked by the Home Office’s treatment of Paulette and others. Not long into the session, Rudd was thrown off course by a question put to her by the committee’s chair, Yvette Cooper. “Targets for removals. When were they set?”

      “We don’t have targets for removals,” she replied with easy confidence. It was an answer that ended her career as home secretary.

      In an earlier session, Lucy Moreton, the head of the Immigration Service Union, had explained how the Home Office target to bring net migration below 100,000 a year had triggered challenging objectives; each region had a removal target to meet, she said. Rudd’s denial seemed to indicate either that she was incompetent and unaware of how her own department worked, or that she was being dishonest. Moreton later told me that, as Rudd was giving evidence, colleagues were sending her selfies taken in front of their office targets boards.

      Rudd was forced back to parliament the next day. This time, she admitted that the Home Office had set local targets, but insisted: “I have never agreed there should be specific removal targets and I would never support a policy that puts targets ahead of people.” But, on 29 April, the Guardian published a private memo from Rudd to May, sent in early 2017, that revealed she had set an “ambitious but deliverable” target for an increase in enforced deportations. Later that evening, she resigned.

      When I heard the news, I felt ambivalent; Rudd hadn’t handled the crisis well, but she wasn’t responsible for the mess. She seemed to be resigning on a technicality, rather than admitting she had been negligent and that her department had behaved atrociously on her watch. The Windrush people I spoke to that night told me Rudd’s departure only shifted attention from the person who was really responsible: Theresa May.

      *

      Joycelyn John was issued with a plane ticket from Grenada to England in July 2018. “A bit of me was ecstatic, a bit of me was angry that no one had listened to me in the first place,” she told me when we met at her still-bare flat in June this year. She had been rehoused in September, but the flat was outside London, far from her family and empty; council officials didn’t think to provide any furniture. Friends gave her a bed and some chairs, but it was months before she was able to get a fridge.

      In late 2018, she received a letter of apology from the then home secretary, Sajid Javid. “People of the Windrush generation who came to Britain from the Commonwealth, as my parents did, have helped make this country what it is today,” he wrote. “The experiences faced by you and others have been completely unacceptable.” The letter made her cry, but not with relief. “I thought: ‘What good is a letter of apology now?’ They ruined my life completely. I came back to nothing. I have had to start rebuilding my life from scratch at the age of 58.”

      She still has nightmares that she is back in Grenada. “I can feel the heat, I can smell the food, I can actually taste the fish in the dream – in a good way. But mostly they are bad memories.” The experience has upended her sense of who she is. “Before this I felt British – I just did. I’m the sort of person who would watch every royal wedding on television. I feel less British now. I feel I don’t belong here, and I don’t belong there.”

      While a government compensation scheme has been announced, Joycelyn, like most of the Windrush generation, has yet to receive any money. Since the government apologised for its “appalling” treatment, 6,000 people have been given documents confirming their right to live in the UK. Joycelyn is one of them. But, although her right to be here is now official, she hasn’t yet got a passport – because she can’t afford the fee. And she remains frightened. “I’m still looking over my shoulder all the time. I’m a nervous wreck.”

      https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2019/sep/14/scale-misery-devastating-inside-story-reporting-windrush-scandal?CMP=sh

  • UK banks to check 70m bank accounts in search for illegal immigrants

    Exclusive: From January banks will be enrolled in Theresa May’s plans to create ‘hostile environment’ for illegal migrants

    Exclusive: From January banks will be enrolled in Theresa May’s plans to create ‘#hostile_environment’ for illegal migrants

    https://amp.theguardian.com/uk-news/2017/sep/21/uk-banks-to-check-70m-bank-accounts-in-search-for-illegal-immigrant
    #it_has_begun #régression #migrations #sans-papiers #UK #surveillance #Angleterre #collaboration #police #frontières #contrôles_frontaliers #politique_migratoire #environnement_hostile #persécution #harcèlement

    #frontières_mobiles? #mobile_borders

    Si d’autres personnes veulent bien m’aider avec des tags...

    cc @reka

  • The hostile environment: what is it and who does it affect?

    The “hostile environment” for migrants is a package of measures designed to make life so difficult for individuals without permission to remain that they will not seek to enter the UK to begin with or if already present will leave voluntarily. It is inextricably linked to the net migration target; the hostile environment is intended to reduce inward migration and increase outward emigration.

    The hostile environment includes measures to limit access to work, housing, health care, bank accounts and to reduce and restrict rights of appeal against Home Office decisions. The majority of these proposals became law via the Immigration Act 2014, and have since been tightened or expanded under the Immigration Act 2016.


    https://www.freemovement.org.uk/hostile-environment-affect

    #hostile_environment #environnement_hostile #migrations #UK #mythe #préjugés #asile #réfugiés #statistiques #chiffres #retours #renvois #expulsions #retours_volontaires #Angleterre #efficacité #dissuasion

    • The US government deliberately made the desert deadly for migrants

      The deaths of two Guatemalan child migrants in US custody highlights the perilousness of a journey that is no accident

      This month, Jakelin Caal Maquin, a seven-year-old Guatemalan girl, died less than 48 hours after being detained at a remote New Mexico border crossing. Felipe Gómez Alonzo, an eight-year old Guatemalan boy, spent his final days in custody before tragically passing on Christmas Eve. Both were brought to the United States by families seeking a better life for their children. In the United States, all they found was death.

      Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials have been quick to deflect the blame. “[Jakelin’s] family chose to cross illegally,” Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen asserted. In the case of Felipe, the DHS pointed to migrant shelters in Mexico as possible sources of disease. These desperate attempts do little to obscure the full weight of US culpability.

      When trying to make sense of these two tragic deaths – and while details are still emerging – one thing is clear: the journey they undertook is designed to be deadly. In the 1990s, then president Bill Clinton introduced Prevention Through Deterrence, a border security policy which closed off established migrant routes. This forced migrants like Jakelin and her father through more remote and trying terrain. Jakelin and Felipe would probably not have died had it not been for the extreme conditions that Prevention Through Deterrence forces migrants to withstand.
      Sign up to receive the latest US opinion pieces every weekday

      As the No More Deaths spokeswoman, Justine Orlovsky-Schnitzler, notes: “Crossing from the US border in any location, there’s no physical way as a human being to carry the kind of water you’ll need to survive those conditions for three, four days of walking.” Those who survive the immediate journey still face significant health risks if they are not immediately granted medical treatment – at present, border patrol relies on self-assessment, and, as in Jakelin’s case, the documentation is often in a language they can’t read.

      Prevention Through Deterrence meant tremendous investments in surveillance and border militarization, with the aim of pushing migrants ever deeper into the unforgiving Sonoran desert. Though the border patrol denies accountability for deaths along the US-Mexico border, their very metrics for success under the policy include “fee increases by smugglers”, “possible increase in complaints”, and “more violence at attempted entries”. These children’s deaths were by no means unpredictable. Violence is built into the plan.

      Hundreds disappear each year, their remains too decomposed to be identified

      The immigrant advocacy group No More Deaths charges that the US border patrol uses the desert as a weapon. Armed with night-vision equipment, border patrol agents chase migrants blindly into hostile desert terrain. In the ensuing chaos, migrants fall to their deaths, or get hopelessly lost. Hundreds disappear each year, their remains too decomposed to be identified.

      Prevention Through Deterrence has done little to curb migration, but it has led to an explosion in needless suffering. As accessible routes are abandoned in favor of remote terrain, what was once a straightforward journey becomes life-threatening. In 1994, the year of the strategy’s inception, there were an estimated 14 deaths alongside the US-Mexico border. Last year, a staggering 412 deaths were documented in the region. As migrants are funnelled deeper into remote areas, they face not only the capricious desert terrain, but fatigue, dehydration and a host of heat-related ailments. Seizing on an influx of vulnerable, disoriented travellers, cartels lie in wait to extort and kidnap their next victims. Stories of rape along the migrant trail are so overwhelmingly common that many take contraceptives before the journey.

      Prevention Through Deterrence assumes that migrants will simply stop coming if the journey is difficult enough. But migration is as old as human history itself. While the US decries an explosion of immigrants, policymakers would do well to consider their role in perpetuating migration flows. From exploitative trade deals – Nafta put more than 1 million Mexican farmers out of work – to outright imperial aggression – see US-backed coups in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Guatemala and Honduras, among others – the US is a harbinger of death and destruction across the continent. To turn away those who flee the disastrous results of our policies is victim blaming of the most vile sort.

      US immigration officials have expressed regret at the passing of these children. Don’t take their word for it. Just last year, No More Deaths released video evidence of border patrol officials vandalizing water left for migrants. An unidentified agent grins at the camera while emptying water jugs, and others kick over bottles with glee. In the arid Sonoran desert, it is physically impossible to carry enough water to survive, a fact that is not lost on those who are employed to monitor the terrain day in and out. Within hours of the video’s release, a member of No More Deaths was arrested on charges of harboring immigrants. He will face 20 years in prison if convicted.

      A popular immigrant refrain asserts: “We are here because you were there.” US policies of economic extraction and militarism put children like Jakelin and Felipe at risk every single day. To put an end to deaths at the border, the US must stop penalizing those who flee its very own destruction.

      https://amp.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/dec/29/the-us-government-deliberately-made-the-desert-deadly-for-migrants?

    • #border_angels

      Border Angels is an all volunteer, non profit organisation that advocates for human rights, humane immigration reform, and social justice with a special focus on issues related to issues related to the US-Mexican border. Border Angels engages in community education and awareness programs that include guided trips to the desert to place water along migrant crossing routes as well as to the border to learn about the history of US-Mexico border policy and experience the border fence firsthand.

      Border Angels also works to serve San Diego County’s immigrant population through various migrant outreach programs such as Day Laborer outreach and our free legal assistance program held in our office every Tuesday. Border Angels works to dispel the various myths surrounding immigration in the United States and to bring back truth and justice.

      http://www.borderangels.org
      #solidarité #anges

    • Water in the desert. Inside the effort to prevent migrant deaths at the US-Mexico border

      “I had no idea how many people had died. I had no idea the extent of the humanitarian crisis.”

      In the lead-up to the US midterm elections, President Donald Trump has stoked fears about undocumented immigration. After repeatedly saying that immigrants from Latin America are criminals and peddling baseless claims that unidentified people from the Middle East are part of a “caravan of migrants” making its way north from Honduras, Trump ordered the deployment of more than 5,000 soldiers to the southern US border.

      Decades of acrimonious public debate over undocumented immigration in the United States has focused on security, crime, and economics while largely overlooking the people at the centre of the issue and the consequences of US attempts to prevent them from entering the country.

      One of the starkest facts about this humanitarian emergency is that at least 6,700 bodies have been found since 2000 – likely only a fraction of the actual number of people who have died trying to cross the southern US border over this period. More than a third of these bodies have been found in the Sonoran Desert in southern Arizona, where migration routes have been pushed into increasingly harsh and remote terrain.

      Seldom reported and virtually unheard of outside the border region, these bodies have become a cause for a small constellation of humanitarian groups in southern Arizona, spawning an unlikely effort to prevent deaths by placing drinking water along migration trails in the desert.

      “I found it shocking,” Brian Best, a volunteer who moved to Arizona a couple years ago, says of the situation in the desert. “I had no idea how many people had died. I had no idea the extent of the humanitarian crisis.”

      Trying to save lives in this way is not uncontroversial. Undocumented immigration is one of the most polarising issues in US politics and aid groups operate in the same areas that cartels use to smuggle drugs into the country. Inevitably, humanitarian efforts are caught up in the politics and paranoia surrounding these two issues.

      The intensity of the situation has led to a strained relationship between the humanitarians and the Border Patrol, the federal agency tasked with preventing undocumented immigration. Nearly two decades after aid efforts began, the numbers crossing the border have reached a historic low but the proportion of people dying is rising.

      Early on a Friday morning, Stephen Saltonstall, 74, sits behind the steering wheel of a flatbed pickup as it shakes and rattles towards the US-Mexico border. The back of the truck is loaded with equipment: a 300-gallon plastic tank of drinking water, a gas operated pump to pull the water out, and a long, lead-free hose to deliver it into barrels at the water stations Humane Borders, the NGO Saltonstall volunteers with, maintains across southern Arizona.

      It’s mid-September and the temperature is already climbing. By midday it will reach well over 100 degrees (38 celsius), and there are no clouds to interrupt the sun as it bakes the hardscrabble landscape of the Sonoran Desert, surprisingly green from the recently departed monsoon rains. Scraggly mesquite trees and saguaro cactuses with comically tubular arms whir past as Saltonstall guides the truck along Route 286 southwest of Tucson. A veteran of the civil rights movement with a lifelong commitment to social justice – like many others involved in the humanitarian aid effort here – he has made this drive more than 150 times in the three years since moving to Arizona from the northeastern United States.

      Around mile marker 38 – signifying 38 miles north of the border – 13 miles north of an inland US Border Patrol checkpoint, Saltonstall eases the truck off to the side of the road. Stepping out, he walks to the top of a small hill about 10 feet from where the asphalt ends. Stopping next to a small wooden cross planted in the cracked earth, he puts his hands together and offers a silent prayer.

      “I’m sorry that you died an awful death here,” Saltonstall says when he’s finished praying. “Wherever you are now, I hope you are in a better place.”

      The cross is painted red and draped with a strand of rosary beads. It marks the spot – on top of this small hill, in plain sight of the road – where the body of someone who irregularly crossed the border into the United States was found in July 2017. The person likely succumbed to thirst or hyperthermia after spending days trekking through this harsh, remote environment. But no one knows for sure. By the time someone came across the remains, scavenging birds and animals had stripped the body down to a skeleton. There’s no official cause of death and the person’s identity is unknown.

      Nearly 3,000 human remains like this one have been found in southern Arizona since the year 2000. Many more are probably lost in this vast and sparsely populated desert, lying in areas too remote and infrequently trafficked to be discovered before they decompose and end up being carried off in pieces by feasting animals, scattered and rendered invisible.

      Prevention through deterrence

      It wasn’t always like this in southern Arizona.

      The office of Pima County medical examiner Dr. Greg Hess receives all the human remains found near the migration trails in three of the four Arizonan counties that border Mexico.

      “In the 1990s we would average about 15 of these types of remains being recovered every year,” says Hess. Starting in 2002, that average jumped to 160 bodies per year, he adds.

      Most people irregularly crossing the border used to simply sneak over in urban areas where it wasn’t too dangerous. But things started to change in the mid 1990s with the introduction of a federal policy called “prevention through deterrence”. The policy directed Border Patrol to concentrate agents and resources in the urban areas where most people were crossing. The architects of the strategy predicted that “illegal traffic will be deterred, or forced over more hostile terrain, less suited for crossing and more suited for enforcement.”

      The construction of border walls between urban areas in northern Mexico and their neighbouring towns and cities in the United States soon followed. That funnelled the movement of migrants decisively into remote areas like the desert in southern Arizona, but had no discernible impact on the number of people irregularly entering the United States.

      Corlata Wray, 62, watched in the early 2000s as federal policy brought a humanitarian crisis to her back yard. Born in Durango, Mexico, Wray has lived in the small, rural town of Arivaca, Arizona, 12 miles from the border, for the better part of four decades. A slow trickle of people has always moved through Arivaca given its location, but in the late 1990s the number of people trekking across the desert close to Wray’s home dramatically increased.

      In the early years people would knock on the door and Wray would give them water and a little bit of food before they continued on their way. Helping migrants in this way was a normal part of life, according to many people IRIN spoke to living in the border region. But as enforcement efforts ramped up, “everything changed”, says Wray, who now volunteers regularly with organisations providing aid and support to migrants. “I started to see more suffering with the migrants.”

      Now the people who end up on her property are usually in a desperate situation – parched and sunburnt, with bloodied and blistered feet and twisted or broken limbs. “They don’t know which way to go, and that’s when their life is in danger because they’re lost. They have no water. They have no food. And then the desert is not beautiful anymore. Es mortal,” Wray says, switching into Spanish – “It’s deadly”.
      “We have to do something”

      As the “prevention through deterrence” policy came into full effect in the early 2000s, the fact that migrants were dying in the desert at an alarming rate was hard for some people to overlook. Ila Abernathy, a long-time resident of Tucson, 65 miles north of the border, remembers a point in July 2002 when a dozen or more bodies were found in one weekend.

      Fifty-nine at the time, Abernathy had moved to Tucson as a young adult and had been active in the waning years of the sanctuary movement, which sought to provide safe-haven to refugees fleeing civil wars in Central America in the 1980s as the US government restricted their ability to seek asylum. A decade and half later, the network from that movement was still intact.

      Following the news of the deaths in July 2002, a meeting was called at the Southside Presbyterian Church in Tucson. “This is a new crisis. We have to do something,” Abernathy recalls of the meeting’s conclusion. “We need to advocate and we need to get out there and search for people before they die.”

      In the beginning, that meant giving aid to people directly. Between 2002 and 2008, Border Patrol apprehended between 300,000 and 500,000 people every year in the area south of Tucson. “You’d just drive down the road early in the morning and there would be clusters of people either ready to give up or else already in Border Patrol capture,” Abernathy says.

      The group that formed out of the meeting at the Southside Presbyterian Church, the Tucson Samaritans, travelled the roads providing food, water, and medical aid to people in need. Two other groups, Humane Borders and No More Deaths, formed around the same time with similar missions. Their members tended to be active in multiple groups at the same time and were often veterans of the sanctuary or civil rights movements, like Abernathy and Saltonstall. Others were young people who came to the region on educational trips and decided to stay, or longtime residents of southern Arizona who had watched the crisis develop and felt compelled to try to help.

      But their work soon got harder. In 2006, the administration of US president George W. Bush announced a massive expansion of the Border Patrol. With nearly double the number of agents in the field and more resources, it became increasingly rare to find migrants along the roads, or even close to them, according to Abernathy. Unable to deliver aid to people directly, groups started hiking into the remote desert to find the trails migrants were using and leave behind gallon jugs of drinking water in the hope they would be found by people in need. It’s an effort that has continued now for close to 12 years.
      Into the desert

      On a Sunday morning, Best, 59, is picking his way along a migration trail deep in the Sonoran Desert with two other volunteers from the Tucson Samaritans. If you could travel in a straight line, the nearest paved road would be about 10 miles away. But moving in a straight line isn’t an option out here.

      Best and the other volunteers left their four wheel drive SUV behind some time ago after following the winding, rocky roads as far as they could. They are now hiking on foot towards the US-Mexico border. The landscape doesn’t distinguish between the two countries. In every direction, cactuses and mesquite trees carpet low, jagged hills. At the far limits of the vast, open expanse, towering mountains run like rows of crooked shark’s teeth along the horizon.

      This is the “hostile terrain” referred to by the architects of “prevention through deterrence” where migration routes have been pushed. There’s no man-made wall at the border here – just a rusted barbed wire fence. But someone would have to hike about 30 miles to make it north of the inland Border Patrol checkpoint on Route 286 to reach a potential pick-up point, or 60 miles to make it to Tucson. Humanitarian aid volunteers say the trip usually takes from three to 10 days.

      In the summertime the temperature reaches 120 degrees (49 celsius) and in the winter it drops low enough for people to die of hypothermia. There are 17 species of rattlesnakes in this desert, which is also home to the venomous gila monster lizard, tarantulas, scorpions, and other potentially dangerous animals. Natural water sources are few and far between, Border Patrol agents traverse the area in all-terrain vehicles and pickup trucks, on horseback and in helicopters; and there’s surveillance equipment laced throughout the landscape. “I’m really surprised that anybody gets through,” says one humanitarian volunteer, “but they do.”

      On the trail where Best is walking, the ground is uneven and rocks jut out at menacing angles. It’s easy to twist an ankle and impossible to move forward without getting scraped by mesquite branches or poked by cactus spines.

      Best has been visiting this area of the desert for a little over a year. In the beginning, there were a lot of signs that migrants were passing through – black plastic water bottles from Mexico, food wrappers with recent expiration dates, even discarded backpacks and clothing – so the Samaritans started putting jugs of water here hoping it would help fortify people against the dangers of the long journey ahead. But recently the jugs have been sitting untouched. It looks like the route has shifted elsewhere.

      During the second half of the morning Best will explore new territory – literally bushwhacking through the desert – to try to figure out where the route has moved to and where water should be placed. More than a decade after humanitarian aid groups started hiking out into the desert, there are still plenty of places they have yet to set foot in. Figuring out where people are moving and then putting out water is a time-consuming and labour-intensive process of trial and error. “It is very slow and inefficient in some ways, but I think really important,” Best says. “There’s no other way to do it.”

      In the 12 years since they started, over the course of innumerable hikes like this one, the Samaritans have mapped somewhere between 1,500 and 2,000 miles of trails south of Tucson, according to volunteers. Two different groups go out every day, bringing water to hundreds of locations over the course of any given week. In total in the past two years, according to one volunteer, the group has placed 3,295 gallon jugs of water in the desert. No More Deaths, which also relies on volunteers to hike water into the desert, says it has put out 31,558 gallons in past three years, 86 percent of which was used.

      Humane Borders, the organisation that Saltonstall volunteers with, operates using a slightly different model. It maintains fixed water stations at 51 locations on public and private land in southern Arizona that it services by truck. Each station consists of a 55-gallon barrel with a blue flag flying high in the sky to mark its location. Last year the group put 70,000 gallons of water into these stations. Between the three groups, comprised of a couple hundred active volunteers, that’s equivalent to about 10 backyard swimming pools full of water placed along migration trails in the desert, one bottle or barrel at a time.
      Not so straightforward

      The terrain where the humanitarian aid groups put water is some of the most politically charged in the US, at the heart of debates about both undocumented immigration and the movement of illicit drugs into the country. Needless to say, not everybody supports what the groups are doing.

      Cartels have a strong presence in the towns and cities of northern Mexico, and control and profit from the movement of both people and drugs across the border. Critics of the humanitarian groups say they are helping people break the law both by assisting migrants who are irregularly entering the United States and by putting water out that cartel drug runners and scouts can drink just as easily as anyone else.

      Humane Borders receives public funding from the Board of Supervisors in Pima County, but the vote to approve the funding is split: three Democratic members in favour and two Republican members against. Both Republican supervisors declined to comment when IRIN asked about their opposition to the funding – a spokesperson for one said the vote “speaks for itself.”

      The relationship between the humanitarian aid groups and Border Patrol has also been rocky. In particular, No More Deaths has been openly critical of Border Patrol, documenting agents destroying water drops and arguing that the agency’s tactics are contributing to deaths and disappearances in the desert. Border Patrol says it doesn’t condone the destruction of humanitarian aid drops and that it ultimately views its work as humanitarian as well.

      Nine members of No More Deaths have also been arrested on various charges related to their humanitarian work, ranging from trespassing and littering to harbouring illegal aliens, in what volunteers see as an effort to criminalise aid activities in the desert. One of those arrested faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted, and the Intercept has reported that court documents and other evidence suggest some of the arrests were retaliation against No More Deaths for publicising Border Patrol abuses.

      As far as whether water drops are benefitting cartel members or helping people break the law, the questions aren’t really important to many volunteers. “The real basic, humane argument is that nobody should be dying out here,” Best, the Samaritans volunteer, says.

      A more important question is whether the water drops are effective at saving lives. There’s anecdotal evidence from migrants who are caught by Border Patrol and later deported to northern Mexico that it is reaching people in need, but there’s no way to tell how many.

      There’s also the fact that, even as the number of people crossing the desert south of Tucson has decreased, the number of bodies found has remained relatively consistent. Also, not every death in the desert is caused by dehydration. “If somebody has heat stroke it may not be a process of having water available,” explains Hess, the medical examiner. “They may have water with them. It’s just that you’re too hot.”
      “What value can you put on saving even one life?”

      Considering that Border Patrol apprehended an average of over 100 people per day south of Tucson last year, and that an untold number of others crossed without being caught, and that the water isn’t necessarily in all of the places where people are trekking, the volunteers are aware of the limits of what they do. One estimated that over the course of an eight- to 10-hour hike a group of four people could only put enough water out to sustain 15 migrants for one day.

      “What we do is small, and we know it does some good,” Abernathy says. “We don’t want to delude ourselves into thinking this is the solution… [But] what value can you put on saving even one life?”

      Short of a major change to the “prevention through deterrence” policy, many don’t see an alternative to what they are doing. And humanitarian aid efforts have expanded over the years westward from the area south of Tucson to even more remote and sparsely populated parts of the desert where people have to walk 85 to 100 miles through nearly empty wilderness before reaching a point where they can be picked up.

      The old copper mining town of Ajo, Arizona – home to around 3,000 people – is in the heart of one of these far flung, desolate places. One hundred and thirty miles west of Tucson, this outpost of old clapboard and adobe houses is bordered by a national park, wildlife refuge, and US Air Force bombing range that combined constitute a relatively uninhabited and untouched area of desert the size of the state of Connecticut.

      On a warm dry night, volunteers from various humanitarian aid groups are gathered here in the town square, under the light of dim street lamps and a nearly full moon, to pay homage to what binds their community together: the people who have died in the desert.

      Some of the volunteers will wake at 4:45am to try to avoid the heat as best they can and hike out along the trails carrying their gallon jugs of water. But tonight at this vigil they form a line and one by one pick up white wooden crosses, holding them in front of their bodies. Each one represents the remains of a person that were found in the area surrounding Ajo in 2017 and is inscribed with a name or the word desconocido – Spanish for “unknown”. There are about 30 volunteers, and they have to pass through the line more than once. There are more crosses than people to hold them.

      https://www.irinnews.org/news-feature/2018/11/06/migrants-US-Mexico-caravan-elections-Trump-water-desert
      #eau #résistance #désert #frontières #mourir_aux_frontières #hostile_environment

    • Four women found guilty after leaving food and water for migrants in Arizona desert

      A federal judge on Friday reportedly found four women guilty of misdemeanors after they illegally entered a national wildlife refuge along the U.S.-Mexico border to leave water and food for migrants.

      According to The Arizona Republic, the four women were aid volunteers for No More Deaths, an advocacy group dedicated to ending the deaths of migrants crossing desert regions near the southern border.

      One of the volunteers with the group, Natalie Hoffman, was found guilty of three charges against her, including operating a vehicle inside the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge, entering a federally protected wilderness area without a permit and leaving behind gallons on water and bean cans.

      The charges reportedly stemmed from an August 2017 encounter with a U.S. Fish and Wildlife officer at the wildlife refuge.

      The three other co-defendants — Oona Holcomb, Madeline Huse and Zaachila Orozco-McCormick — were reportedly passengers in Hoffman’s truck at the time and were also charged with entering federally protected area without a permit and leaving behind personal property.

      Each of the women face up to six months in prison for the charges and a $500 fine after being found guilty.

      In his three-page order, U.S. Magistrate Judge Bernardo Velasco reportedly wrote that the defendants did not “get an access permit, they did not remain on the designated roads, and they left water, food, and crates in the Refuge."

      “All of this, in addition to violating the law, erodes the national decision to maintain the Refuge in its pristine nature,” he continued.

      He also criticized the No More Deaths group for failing to adequately warn the women of all of the possible consequences they faced for violating the protected area’s regulations, saying in his decision that “no one in charge of No More Deaths ever informed them that their conduct could be prosecuted as a criminal offense nor did any of the Defendants make any independent inquiry into the legality or consequences of their activities.”

      Another volunteer with No More Deaths, Catherine Gaffney, slammed Velasco’s ruling in a statement to The Arizona Republic.

      “This verdict challenges not only No More Deaths volunteers, but people of conscience throughout the country,” Gaffney said.

      “If giving water to someone dying of thirst is illegal, what humanity is left in the law of this country?” she continued.

      According to The Associated Press, the ruling marks the first conviction brought against humanitarian aid volunteers in 10 years.


      https://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/426185-four-women-found-guilty-after-leaving-food-and-water-for
      #délit_de_solidarité #solidarité
      signalé par @fil

    • Arizona: Four women convicted after leaving food and water in desert for migrants

      Federal judge finds activists guilty of entering a national wildlife refuge without a permit to give aid to migrants


      A federal judge has found four women guilty of entering a national wildlife refuge without a permit as they sought to place food and water in the Arizona desert for migrants.

      US magistrate Judge Bernardo Velasco’s ruling on Friday marked the first conviction against humanitarian aid volunteers in a decade.

      The four found guilty of misdemeanours in the recent case were volunteers for No More Deaths, which said in a statement the group had been providing life-saving aid to migrants.

      The volunteers include Natalie Hoffman, Oona Holcomb, Madeline Huse and Zaachila Orozco-McCormick.

      Hoffman was found guilty of operating a vehicle inside Cabeza Prieta national wildlife refuge, entering the federally protected area without a permit, and leaving water jugs and cans of beans there in August 2017.

      The others were found guilty of entering without a permit and leaving behind personal property.

      https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/jan/19/arizona-four-women-convicted-after-leaving-food-and-water-in-desert-for

    • Convicted for leaving water for migrants in the desert: This is Trump’s justice

      A FEW weeks ago, federal prosecutors in Arizona secured a conviction against four humanitarian aid workers who left water in the desert for migrants who might otherwise die of heat exposure and thirst. Separately, they dropped manslaughter charges against a U.S. Border Patrol agent who fired 16 times across the border, killing a teenage Mexican boy. The aid workers face a fine and up to six months in jail. The Border Patrol officer faces no further legal consequences.

      That is a snapshot of twisted frontier justice in the age of Trump. Save a migrant’s life, and you risk becoming a political prisoner. Kill a Mexican teenager, and you walk free.

      The four aid workers, all women, were volunteers in service to an organization, No More Deaths, whose religious views inform its mission to prevent undocumented migrants from dying during their perilous northward trek. They drove into the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge, about 100 miles southwest of Phoenix, to leave water jugs along with some canned beans.

      The women — Natalie Hoffman, Oona Holcomb, Madeline Huse and Zaachila Orozco-McCormick — made no effort to conceal their work. Confronted by a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officer, they said they believed everyone deserved access to basic survival needs. One of them, Ms. Orozco-McCormick, compared the wildlife refuge to a graveyard, such is the ubiquity of human remains there.

      Since the turn of the century, more than 2,100 undocumented migrants have died in that sun-scorched region of southern Arizona, according to Humane Borders, a nonprofit group that keeps track of the numbers. Last year, according to the Pima County Medical Examiner’s Office, the remains of 127 dead migrants were recovered there.

      In the past, prosecutors declined to press charges against the volunteers who try to help by leaving water and canned food in the desert. But the four women, arrested in August 2017, were tried for the misdemeanor offenses of entering a refuge without a permit, abandoning personal property and, in the case of Ms. Hoffman, driving in a restricted area. U.S. Magistrate Judge Bernardo Velasco, who presided over the bench trial, said their actions ran afoul of the “national decision to maintain the Reserve in its pristine nature.”

      In fact, prosecutors have broad discretion in deciding whether to press such minor charges — just as they do in more consequential cases such as the manslaughter charge against Lonnie Swartz, the Border Patrol agent who killed 16-year-old José Antonio Elena Rodríguez in October 2012. According to Mr. Swartz, he opened fire on the boy, shooting 16 times in what the agent said was self-defense, through the fence that divides the city of Nogales along the Arizona-Mexico border. He said the boy had been throwing stones at him across the frontier.

      Mr. Swartz was acquitted on second-degree murder charges last spring, but the jury deadlocked on manslaughter charges. In a second trial, last fall, the jury also failed to reach a verdict on manslaughter. Last month, prosecutors declined to seek a third trial.

      While the aid workers seek to avoid prison time, Americans may well wonder about a system in which justice is rendered so perversely.

      https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/convicted-for-leaving-water-for-migrants-in-the-desert--this-is-trumps-justice/2019/01/27/9d4b3104-2013-11e9-8b59-0a28f2191131_story.html?noredirect=on