• AYS SPECIAL: Day of shame on #Lesvos — PIKPA under eviction | by Are You Syrious? | Are You Syrious? | Oct, 2020 | Medium

    Since 2015, #PIKPA has provided housing to the most vulnerable: people who are disabled, sick or pregnant, unaccompanied children and the families of victims of shipwrecks, as well as local people in times of crisis. They have supported over 30,000 people. Yet, this morning, at the time of writing, it is under eviction.

  • AYS Daily Digest 21/04/20

    ECtHR requests that Greece provide appropriate accommodation and medical treatment to refugees contained in Lesvos hotspot

    The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic highlights yet again the extreme risks facing refugees contained under squalid conditions on the Eastern Aegean islands. The Reception and Identification Centres (RIC) on Lesvos, Chios, Samos, Leros and Kos host over 35,000 persons, more than five times above their reception capacity. Severe overcrowding under abhorrent living conditions in the RIC is a persisting reality, in sharp contrast to social distancing measures enforced throughout Greece and to recent European Commission guidance to transfer asylum seekers to facilities with lower occupancy.
    This backdrop renders evacuation out of Moria and other sites a public health imperative to prevent loss of life. Beyond unaccompanied children, whose plight has led to welcome relocation initiatives to other EU countries, many more people face acute health risks, not least due to particular circumstances including age, medical conditions and trauma.

    150people tested positive for the coronavirus at a quarantined seaside hotel housing 470 people, including many children, but none of those infected displayed symptoms of COVID-19, media report.
    Located 170 kilometres southwest of Athens, this hotel has been quarantined since April 16 after an employee tested positive.

    L’ ALTRA VOCE published a letter co-signed by 70 people staying at one of the official camps in Una Sana canton, run by IOM. From the Miral camp in Velika Kladuša, they wrote that there is not a sufficient amount of food for everyone, and people are not allowed to buy and bring inside their own food to eat at their chosing, thus selectively applying their own standards.

    According to the people whose photos and statements made it to the Letter, there is always someone going to sleep hungry. Also, there are frequent references to violent measures and unprofessionally harsh treatment by the outsourced security companies working in camps. Among others, the letter states:
    “If we ask for the market they always say IOM will open market for you inside the camp and provide you a western union inside the camp but until this opportunity, you cannot buy anything from the market.
    We are all worried because very soon our Ramzan month is coming how we will survive during the Ramzan because they don’t have any good management or their staff is also acting like racist people we are afraid might be they will also beat us in future.”

    #Covid-19 #Migration #Migrant #Balkans #Grèce #Camp #Lesvos #Chios #Samos #Leros #Kos #Hotspot #Athènes #Hotel #Quarantaine #Bosnie-Herzégovine


  • Are You Syrious (AYS)
    AYS Daily Digest 07/04/20


    AYS Daily Digest 07/04/20

    FEATURE Luxembourg and Germany are finally going to take in some children suffering in Greece’s island camps.
    Germany is going to take in 50 and Luxembourg will take in…12. There are at least 5,500 unaccompanied minors currently in Greece. A group of countries decided last week to collectively bring in 1,600 of these unaccompanied children, but COVID-19 has slowed this process.
    Luxembourg is the first country escort any these children; their 12 being on Lesvos and Chios currently. Their relocation will happen sometime next week. At least 5,488 unaccompanied children will remain living in horrid conditions afterwards.

    #Covid-19 #Migration #Migrant #Balkans #Grèce #Camp #Luxembourg #Allemagne #Enfant #mineursnonaccompagnés #Lesbos #Chios #transfert


    3rd day of hunger strike in Moria Prison
    On April 5th, the prisoners in Moria’s pre-removal detention centre went on strike for their immediate removal. No Border Kitchen Lesvos explains:
    “These days governments across the world have been releasing people with short sentences from prison, while the Greek state continues to insist that no migrant detainees will be released. The men here in the prison are held in administrative detention and have committed no crime. They are detained only because of their status. Some because of their nationality, some because their asylum claim was rejected, some because they tried to leave the islands, some even because they signed up for supposed “voluntary return”. Many of those with rejected claims haven’t even had the opportunity to apply for asylum, because of recent legal changes discriminating against people who don’t speak the colonialist language of the country they fled from. They are awaiting deportation to Turkey, despite there being no deportations scheduled for the foreseeable future.”

    #Moria #Camp #Expulsion #Turquie #Grèvedelafaim #Asile #Retourvolontaire


    Migration Minister’s page says medical staff is recruited for detention centres:

    “today began(…) recruitment of emergency staff(…), lasting three (3) months to meet the extraordinary needs of the Reception and Identification Centers and Temporary Supply and Supply Structures for Hosting Services. A total of 150 people will be hired at the KYT of #Lesvos, #Chios, #Samos, #Leros and #Kos, as well as at the Structures of #Malakassa and #Sintiki” and #Evros #prison #outpost.
    “new arrivals from March 1 have not been taken to the Reception and Identification Centers of the Islands but in separate quarantine areas, however there are difficulties to do so(…). So far, the Ministry has not received a positive response from the municipalities for hotel rentals for the removal of vulnerable groups from the KYT to the islands. “The European Commission has offered to cover hotels for the most vulnerable for a short time now due to the crisis, we have a written response from the local municipality that it refuses to use hotels to get the most vulnerable out of #Moria. What some are calling for a mass decongestion of Moria, that is, for 15,000 people to come from Moria to mainland Greece amid the crisis of the corona (…).there are no 15,000 vacancies in the hinterland and if there were they would be in structures like Ritsona. And in the end, it is not a given which place is safer “, the Minister stressed.


    #Ritsona #camp has been in lock down for 5 days now
    …no asylum seeker in or out since at least 23 out of 2,700 people living in the camp have tested positive for COVID-19.
    The 23 people who tested positive for the virus continue to live with their families, who most likely will contact it soon, and none of them show any symptoms of the virus as of yet. Therefore, they are said to feel discriminated by the tests and are refusing to move to the camp’s designated quarantine areas.
    All 23 persons are from African nations, which is unfortunately increasing acts of #racism in the camp. One of the residents said that the other refugees are avoiding African nationals.
    Testing has stalled in the camp because the medical professionals can only go in to conduct the tests with police, but fewer police are willing to enter now.

  • « Moria, Not Good »

    Πορεία διαμαρτυρίας από περίπου 500 γυναικόπαιδα στο κέντρο της Προκυμαίας για τις άθλιες συνθήκες διαβίωσης στο ΚΥΤ Μόριας και τη « ζούγκλα » του ελαιώνα.

    Πορεία στο κέντρο της Μυτιλήνης πραγματοποιήσαν σήμερα, νωρίς το μεσημέρι, περίπου 500 γυναίκες, μαζί με παιδιά, αιτούντες άσυλο που διαμένουν στο ΚΥΤ της Μόριας και στη « ζούγκλα » του ελαιώνα.

    Μία ώρα μετά, στο πρώτο γκρουπ διαδηλωτριών προστέθηκε και ένα δεύτερο. Όλοι μαζί ξεκίνησαν πορεία με κατεύθυνση την οδό Κωνσταντινουπόλεως, όπου στο τρίγωνο έκαναν καθιστική διαμαρτυρία για λίγα λεπτά.

    Ακολούθως πέρασαν μπροστά από τα Κεντρικά Λύκεια και βγήκαν ξανά στην Προκυμαία, όπου έκλεισαν και τα δύο ρεύματα κυκλοφορίας, προκαλώντας κυκλοφοριακό κομφούζιο.

    Από την πλευρά τους οι αστυνομικοί προσπαθούσαν να εκτρέψουν την κυκλοφορία μέσα από την Αγορά, ωστόσο υπήρξαν φορτηγά, λεωφορεία και βαρέα οχήματα που ακινητοποιήθηκαν στην Προκυμαία, ενώ άλλοι οδηγοί με αναστροφή προσπαθούσαν να ξεμπλέξουν από το μποτιλιάρισμα.

    Οι διαδηλώτριες έκαναν καθιστική διαμαρτυρία και μπροστά στη Μεγάλη Βρετάνια, διαμαρτυρόμενες για τις άθλιες συνθήκες διαβίωσης στη Μόρια, καθώς και τις καθυστερήσεις που παρατηρούνται ως προς την εξέταση των αιτήσεων ασύλου τους. Λίγη ώρα αργότερα, συγεντρώθηκαν μπροστά από την Πλατεία Σαπφούς, φωνάζοντας επί ώρα το σύνθημα « Moria, Not Good », πριν ολοκληρώσουν τη διαδήλωσή τους και επιστρέψουν στο ΚΥΤ Μόριας.

    #résistance #hotspot #Grèce #île #Lesbos #asile #migrations #réfugiés

    • « Ελευθερία » ζητούν οι πρόσφυγες στη Μόρια
      Πρωτοφανή επεισόδια σημειώθηκαν σήμερα στη Μυτιλήνη,

      μετά τη μαζική πορεία προσφύγων που ξεκίνησαν το πρωί από τον καταυλισμό ζητώντας να σταματήσει ο εγκλεισμός τους και να επιταχυνθούν οι διαδικασίες χορήγησης ασύλου. Η λέξη « ελευθερία » κυριαρχεί στα αυτοσχέδια πλακάτ.

      Ακολουθεί φωτορεπορτάζ από τη δυναμική κινητοποίηση τουλάχιστον 2.000 προσφύγων, μεταξύ των οποίων πολλές γυναίκες και παιδιά, και τα επεισόδια με τις αστυνομικές δυνάμεις που προχώρησαν επανειλημμένα στη χρήση χημικών.


    • « Λάδι στη φωτιά » οι σημερινές διαδηλώσεις

      Η διαμαρτυρία Αφγανών και τα επεισόδια της Δευτέρας με την αστυνομία.

      Στις 4 το απόγευμα έληξε η διαμαρτυρία των Αφγανών προσφύγων έξω από το Δημοτικό Θέατρο Μυτιλήνης ενάντια στο νέο νόμο για το Άσυλο, που σύμφωνα με τα λεγόμενά τους, τους υποχρεώνει σε νέο εγκλωβισμό- καθώς πλέον έχουν προτεραιότητα οι νεοεισερχόμενοι αιτούντες άσυλο.

      Ειδικότερα, συγκρούσεις μεταξύ Αφγανών που διαμένουν στο ΚΥΤ ης Μόριας, ανδρών και γυναικών κάθε ηλικίας και της Αστυνομίας σημάδεψαν τις σημερινές κινητοποιήσεις, οι οποίες είναι από τις λίγες φορές που έλαβαν χώρα εκτός του ΚΥΤ.

      Η διαδήλωση έφτασε περίπου στις 10.30 το πρωί, σχεδόν στην είσοδο της πόλης της Μυτιλήνης, λίγο μετά το δημοτικό καταυλισμό του Καρά Τεπέ. Εκεί τους περίμενε ισχυρή Αστυνομική δύναμη που δεν τους επέτρεψε να συνεχίζουν. Μια ομάδα περίπου 1000 από τους διαδηλωτές τότε έφυγε μέσω γειτονικών χωραφιών με σκοπό να φτάσουν πίσω από το εργοστάσιο της ΔΕΗ στο δρόμο της βόρειας παράκαμψης και από εκεί να μπουν για να διαμαρτυρηθούν στην πόλη. Στην πορεία τους άναψαν φωτιές για αντιπερισπασμό. Ας σημειωθεί εδώ ότι προς στιγμή η φωτιά έκαιγε και σε κτήματα που γειτνιάζουν με τις εγκαταστάσεις του εργοστασίου της ΔΕΗ. Οι φωτιές επεκτάθηκαν και τότε άρχισαν οδομαχίες προκειμένου να μην ενισχυθεί ο αριθμός όσων προσπαθούσαν να φτάσουν στην πόλη.

      Με ρίψη δακρυγόνων απωθήθηκε ο μεγάλος αριθμός των νεαρών κυρίων Αφγανών που είχαν μείνει στο δρόμο και πίεζαν τις Αστυνομικές δυνάμεις να περάσουν. Ενώ το κλείσιμο του δρόμου δεν επέτρεπε και την έξοδο των οχημάτων της Πυροσβεστικής από τις εγκαταστάσεις της υπηρεσίας που βρίσκονται στην περιοχή.

      Την ίδια ώρα περίπου 500 άτομα που κατάφεραν και μπήκαν στην πόλη από τη βόρεια συνοικία της ενισχυμένη με νεαρούς Αφγανούς πάντα που βρισκόταν στην πόλη κατάλαβαν το δρόμο της Προκυμαίας μπροστά στο Δημοτικό Θέατρο της πόλης ενώ κάποιοι έστησαν και σκηνές.

      Σύμφωνα με επιβεβαιωμένες πληροφορίες του ΑΠΕ η κινητοποίηση ήταν γνωστή στις Αστυνομικές αρχές από την Παρασκευή για αυτό και το Σαββατοκύριακο υπήρξε ενίσχυση της αστυνομικής δύναμης με προσωπικό από την Αθήνα.

      Εδώ η συνεχής ενημέρωση του « Ν », με έξτρα φωτογραφίες και βίντεο.


    • Manifestation à Lesbos : incidents entre forces de l’ordre et migrants

      Les forces anti-émeutes ont fait usage de gaz lacrymogènes lundi sur l’île grecque de Lesbos contre des migrants qui manifestaient contre une nouvelle loi durcissant les procédures d’asile en Grèce, a-t-on appris de source policière.

      Brandissant des banderoles sur lesquelles on pouvait lire en anglais « Freedom » (liberté), quelque 2.000 migrants réclamaient l’examen de leur demande d’asile, que certains attendent depuis des mois voire des années, et protestaient contre les conditions de vie à proximité et à l’intérieur du camp de Moria, le plus grand des camps de Grèce.

      Ils avaient parcouru une distance d’environ 7 km entre le camp de Moria et le port de Mytilène, quand des policiers anti-émeutes leur ont barré la route en lançant des gaz lacrymogènes, selon la même source.

      Toutefois, des centaines de demandeurs d’asile ont réussi à atteindre le port pour y manifester, a constaté une correspondante de l’AFP.

      Le Haut commissariat des réfugiés de l’ONU (HCR) en Grèce souligne les « retards significatifs » pris par les services grecs de l’asile, avec près de 90.000 demandes en souffrance dans un pays qui compte actuellement 112.300 migrants sur les îles et sur le continent, selon les chiffres du HCR.

      « L’accumulation significative des candidatures à l’asile et les graves retards pris dans les procédures d’asile contribuent de manière importante aux conditions dangereuses de surpopulation observée sur les îles », a déclaré à l’AFP Boris Cheshirkov, porte-parole de la section grecque du HCR.

      Face au nombre constant d’arrivées de demandeurs d’asile sur les îles grecques en provenance de la Turquie voisine, le gouvernement de droite a fait voter une loi, entrée en vigueur en janvier, prévoyant des délais brefs pour examiner les demandes d’asile, en vue de renvoyer les demandeurs non éligibles ou déboutés dans leurs pays d’origine ou vers la Turquie voisine.

      Dans les camps, des dizaines de milliers de migrants, arrivés avant janvier, protestent contre les retards importants dans le traitement de leurs demandes d’asile, les empêchant de quitter les îles.

      « Les autorités donnent la priorité à ceux qui sont arrivés récemment » et non pas aux demandeurs d’asile qui attendent depuis longtemps, a souligné Boris Cheshirkov.

      La majorité des 19.000 migrants attendant au camp de Moria, dont la capacité est de 2.700 personnes, « vivent dans des conditions terribles, sans accès à l’eau ou l’électricité », a-t-il rappelé.

      Le HCR-Grèce a appelé « les autorités à mettre en place des procédures justes et efficaces pour identifier ceux qui ont besoin d’une protection internationale en respectant les normes et les garanties adéquates ».

      La situation est devenue explosive à Lesbos, Samos, Kos, Chios et Leros, sur la mer Egée, où vivent 42.000 demandeurs d’asile pour 6.200 places.

      Les bagarres entre demandeurs d’asile y sont en outre fréquentes, et au moins quatre personnes ont perdu la vie ces derniers mois.


    • Réfugiés : à Lesbos, une situation explosive et une #chasse_à_l'homme

      Après une montée de tensions aux relents xénophobes et une manifestation violemment réprimée, l’île grecque a été le théâtre de #heurts les habitants et les migrants, qui s’entassent en nombre dans des camps insalubres.

      « Allez, allez ! Courez ! » hurlent des voix en anglais. Puis aussitôt, en grec : « Cassez-vous d’ici ! » Les images qui circulent sur les réseaux sociaux, où l’on voit des hommes en colère à la poursuite de migrants, sont aussi glaçantes que le ciel gris qui enveloppe Lesbos. Après deux jours de fortes tensions, cette île située à l’extrémité orientale de la Grèce a été le théâtre d’une véritable chasse à l’homme en ce début de semaine.

      Tout a commencé lundi, avec une manifestation de migrants très durement réprimée par les forces de l’ordre. Puis mardi soir, des habitants excédés sont à leur tour sortis dans la rue, revendiquant leur droit de « prendre la situation en main ». Ce n’est pas la première fois que des tensions explosent sur l’île, devenue depuis quatre ans une prison à ciel ouvert pour les réfugiés, coincés sur ce bout de terre européen en attendant le résultat de leur demande d’asile. Mais les événements de ce début de semaine constituent une dérive inédite et inquiétante.
      « Plus de toilettes ni d’électricité »

      Comme toutes les îles grecques qui font face à la Turquie, Lesbos se retrouve en première ligne de l’afflux migratoire vers l’Europe. Et malgré un deal controversé conclu entre Bruxelles et Ankara en 2016, les arrivées n’ont jamais cessé. Elles sont même reparties à la hausse : en 2019, la Grèce est redevenue la première porte d’entrée en Europe, avec 74 000 arrivées en un an.

      Sur les îles, la surpopulation tourne au cauchemar : les nouveaux venus se retrouvent « entassés dans des camps insalubres où il faut faire à chaque fois la queue pendant plusieurs heures pour manger, puis pour prendre une douche ou même aller aux toilettes », rappelle Tommaso Santo, chef de mission à Médecins sans frontières (MSF), joint par téléphone à Athènes.

      A Lesbos, le camp de Moria, prévu pour 3 000 places, accueille désormais plus de 20 000 personnes, abritées tant bien que mal sous des tentes qui grignotent les champs d’olives environnants. « Dans l’extension la plus récente, il n’y a même plus de toilettes ni d’électricité », souligne le responsable de MSF. L’ONG gère une clinique de santé mentale sur l’île. Parmi les patients, on y croise notamment des enfants qui ne parlent plus, refusent de se nourrir. Parfois ils s’automutilent ou ont tenté de se suicider. C’est d’ailleurs pour protester contre cette précarité inhumaine que les réfugiés ont, une fois de plus, manifesté lundi à Lesbos.
      « Climat de peur »

      La colère des habitants n’est pas non plus surprenante. Eux aussi subissent la présence de ces camps insalubres, qui croulent sous les ordures, et autour desquels errent des désespérés condamnés à une attente qui semble sans fin. Mais pour certains observateurs, la montée de tension récente est aussi le résultat de la nouvelle donne politique : « Le retour au pouvoir des conservateurs de Nouvelle Démocratie, en juillet, a implicitement encouragé les pulsions les plus xénophobes. Ils ont fait campagne sur le durcissement des lois migratoires, ils ont promis de se montrer plus durs, et nous y voilà. Aujourd’hui, ce ne sont pas seulement les migrants qui sont ciblés, mais aussi les ONG qui les soutiennent et les habitants qui refusent de les chasser. Certains ont vu leurs maisons caillassées mardi soir », soupire Petros (1), volontaire pour une ONG locale qui dénonce « l’instauration d’un climat de peur ».

      A partir de 2015, les Grecs avaient pourtant fait preuve d’une générosité exemplaire, en accueillant à bras ouverts les premières vagues de réfugiés malgré leurs propres difficultés économiques. Certes, le temps a joué dans la montée du ras-le-bol alors même que les partenaires européens de la Grèce n’ont pas tenu leurs promesses d’offres de relocalisations. Mais la nouvelle politique imposée par la droite grecque s’est effectivement traduite par une stigmatisation des candidats à l’asile dont les conditions d’admission ont été récemment durcies. En outre, ils se trouvent désormais privés de la carte sociale qui leur donnait accès aux soins gratuits. Malgré les demandes pressantes de MSF, le gouvernement de Kyriákos Mitsotákis refuse toujours d’évacuer de Moria 140 enfants qui ont besoin de soins médicaux urgents, indisponibles à Lesbos. Et la promesse de désengorger les îles en transférant des réfugiés en Grèce continentale s’effectue à un rythme ralenti.

      Pendant ce temps, certains relèvent peu à peu la tête : les néonazis d’Aube dorée, qui avaient quasiment disparu de la scène publique ces dernières années, sont de retour depuis quelques mois. A Lesbos, leurs partisans recruteraient notamment parmi de jeunes hommes de « 18 ou 20 ans » : « Ils sont souvent vêtus de passe-montagnes et porteurs de bâton », décrit Petros, le volontaire grec. Des « pitsirikia », de très jeunes garçons, comme les a désignés un journal local. Ils étaient eux aussi dans les rues de Lesbos mardi soir.



      Commentaire reçu via la mailing-list Migreurop :

      Climat explosif à Lesbos, retour en force de l’#Aube_Dorée
      A Mytilène et à #Moria des milices d’extrêmes droite, font la chasse aux ONG et aux migrants -une camionnette appartenant à une ONG a été attaquée dans le village de Moria, tandis qu’un groupe de jeunes cagoulés et armés de bâtons faisait irruption dans les maisons pour vérifier la présence éventuelle de réfugiés, solidaires et des membres des ONG. Le soir du 4 février une maison abandonnée, toujours dans le village de Moria fut incendiée, heureusement les trois réfugiés qui s’y abritaient étaient partis à temps
      A #Mytilène, chef-lieu de Lesbos, après la dispersion d’une manifestation anti-fasciste organisée principalement par des étudiants, un café fréquenté par ceux-ci, fut encerclé par un groupe portant des casques armé de bâtes qui ne se sont éloignés qu’après l’arrivée d’autres étudiants solidaires.

      #extrême_droite #xénophobie #racisme

    • Refugee children amid crowds of protesters tear gassed on Lesbos

      Tensions mount as asylum seekers living in Moria, a notoriously overcrowded Greek camp, rally against poor conditions.

      Greek police have fired tear gas at thousands of refugees and migrants trapped on the overcrowded island of Lesbos, from where they are not allowed to travel to the mainland under a 2016 EU-Turkey deal aimed at curbing migratory flows.

      In tense scenes on Monday, children and babies were caught up in plumes of tear gas during protests by about 2,000 people.

      The clashes broke out around Moria, a notoriously cramped camp which was never designed to hold more than 3,000. Currently, there are nearly 20,000 people in and around the camp.

      Protesters rallied against the continued containment of people on Lesbos island and the unbearable living conditions inside the camp.

      In footage seen by Al Jazeera, children can be seen recovering from being hit with tear gas fired by riot police. Some wore face masks to protect themselves from inhalation.

      Riot police fired the tear gas to try and quell protesters and prevent them from marching on foot to Mytilene, Lesbos’s capital more than four miles away.

      But many Moria residents did reach the port city and continued protesting there on Tuesday.

      Abdul (not his real name), an Afghan refugee, told Al Jazeera: “I participated because people are dying in Moria and nobody cares. We feel like we don’t have a future here, if we wanted to die then we could have stayed in Afghanistan. We came here to look for a good future and to be safe, this is not a place for living.”

      At least two people have died in Moria so far this year in stabbing attacks, according to local media.

      In previous years, refugees at the camp have died in fires, because of extreme weather and as some - including babies - lack access to proper medical facilities.
      Tense mood

      The mood in the centre of Mytilene on Tuesday was tense as nearly 200 people, mainly men and women from Afghanistan, congregated in the central square.

      “Freedom, Freedom,” they chanted, as well as “Lesbos people, we are sorry,” - an apparent apology to Greek residents for the highly charged atmosphere.

      Franziska Grillmeier, a German journalist, told Al Jazeera that she witnessed families being tear gassed on Monday.

      "Yesterday, as the people were trying to move the protest from Moria to Mytilene, the police tried to deter them by using roadblocks. Some families, however, broke through using the olive grove fields next to the camp and tried to find an alternative way to get to Mytilene. The police then started using heavy tear gas, throwing it into the fields by the olive grove, which also set some of the olive trees on fire.

      “There were men holding their kids up, kids who were foaming at the mouth, kids having panic attacks and babies unable to breathe and dehydrating through the gas.”

      She claimed the police reaction appeared to be excessive.

      “There weren’t really any threats to the police at that point, it was just really a tactic of the police to immediately throw tear gas at people who were peacefully trying to make their way to Mytilene.”

      Police reportedly detained dozens of protesters. Al Jazeera contacted the Ministry of Citizen Protection but had not received a response by the time of publication.

      “I saw serious attacks on people, beatings with sticks. I also saw people screaming, holding their kids in the air and saying: ’Look what you’ve done’,” Grillmeier said.

      Paolo Amadei, a freelance photographer from Italy, said: "There were police throwing gas, women and kids and infants got gassed and there were many kids crying.

      “They (refugees) came in peace, that’s what I saw: they weren’t looking for a clash.”

      Boris Cheshirkov, a spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, told Al Jazeera he was concerned by the escalation, which has been “exacerbated by the dire conditions and long wait”.

      He said UNHCR has urged the Greek government to transfer people to the mainland and explained that European solidarity and responsibility-sharing was now crucial.


    • À Lesbos, des migrants manifestent et se heurtent aux forces anti-émeutes

      Les forces anti-émeutes ont fait usage de gaz lacrymogènes lundi sur l’île grecque de Lesbos contre des migrants, qui manifestaient contre une nouvelle loi durcissant les procédures d’asile en Grèce.

      Brandissant des banderoles sur lesquelles on pouvait lire en anglais « Freedom », quelque 2 000 migrants ont manifesté ce lundi 3 février à Lesbos. Ils réclamaient l’examen de leur demande d’asile, que certaines attendent depuis des mois, voire des années, et protestaient contre les conditions de vie à proximité et à l’intérieur du camp de Moria, le plus grand de Grèce.

      Les manifestants avaient parcouru environ 7 km entre le camp de Moria et le port de Mytilène, quand des policiers anti-émeutes leur ont barré la route en lançant des gaz lacrymogènes, rapporte une source policière citée par l’AFP. Des centaines de demandeurs d’asile ont toutefois réussi à atteindre le port pour y manifester.

      Le Haut Commissariat des réfugiés de l’ONU (HCR) en Grèce souligne les « retards significatifs » pris par les services grecs de l’asile, avec près de 90 000 demandes en souffrance dans un pays qui compte actuellement 112 300 migrants sur les îles et sur le continent, selon les chiffres de l’organisation. Des retards qui participent aux conditions de vie désastreuses des exilés sur les îles grecques.

      Situation explosive

      La situation est devenue explosive à Lesbos, Samos, Kos, Chios et Leros, sur la mer Égée, où vivent 42 000 demandeurs d’asile pour 6 200 places. « À Lesbos on a des milliers de gens qui vivent hors des structures du camp de Moria, sous les arbres, sous de petites tentes », rapporte Boris Cheshirkov, porte-parole de la section grecque du HCR, joint par RFI. Sur ces îles, les bagarres entre demandeurs d’asile sont en outre fréquentes, et au moins quatre personnes ont perdu la vie ces derniers mois.

      « La première chose à faire est de transférer plusieurs milliers de personnes sur le continent dans de meilleures conditions de vie, parce que si on ne réduit pas sérieusement le nombre de personnes sur les îles, il n’y aura pas de solution. En parallèle, il faut plus de personnel, plus de services, plus d’hygiène et des procédures administratives plus rapides. Dans le même temps, les pays européens peuvent faire beaucoup plus en ouvrant des places de relocalisation. Le HCR a notamment demandé à des États de prendre en charge une partie des enfants seuls. Il y a eu un programme de relocalisation, mais il a pris fin en 2017 », déplore Boris Cheshirkov.

      Face au nombre constant d’arrivées depuis la Turquie voisine, le gouvernement grec de droite a fait voter une loi, entrée en vigueur en janvier, prévoyant des délais brefs pour examiner les demandes d’asile, en vue de renvoyer les demandeurs non éligibles ou déboutés dans leurs pays d’origine ou vers la Turquie.

      Le HCR-Grèce a appelé « les autorités à mettre en place des procédures justes et efficaces pour identifier ceux qui ont besoin d’une protection internationale en respectant les normes et les garanties adéquates ».


    • Police arrests Greek extremists acting like “raid battalion” in Moria village (UPD)

      Police on the island of Lesvos has arrested seven Greek extremists who were conducting street and house to Greeks and foreign nationals in the village of Moria. All members of the so-called “control squad” or “raid battalion” were wearing helmets and holding bats when they arrested on Thursday night.

      All arrestees are men, police is looking for two more.

      Authorities investigate illegal acts conducted by the extremists both in Moria and the wide area of Mytilini in recent days.

      According to local media stonisi and lesvosnews.net, they are to appear before the prosecutor and face charges for violating gun laws and for setting up a criminal group acting like a “raid battalion.” Later it was reported that they will be charged also for violating “anti-racism laws. Authorities reportedly investigate also whether they were involved in criminal acts in the past, ANT1 reported.

      UPDATE: According to latest information for the island, five of the arrestees are Greeks, one is Bulgarian national and one Albanian, all aged 17-24. The two still sought by the police are a Greek and a foreigner, both minors.

      Seized have been 5 wooden bats and one metal stick as well as full face mask, reports, levsosnews.net.

      Although authorities have been denying the existence of such groups, a exclusive video captured them as they terrorized customers of a bar in downtown Mytilini two days ago. They men wear masks, black jackets and threaten the bar’s customers they “do not like.”

      According to eyewitnesses, these young men were also checking Greeks and foreign nationals passing by the main commercial Ermou street.

      The “squad” has also “raided” a cafeteria on the same street, where students, workers and volunteers of non-governmental organizations involved in the refugee crisis hang out.

      These reports were also confirmed by police, local media stonisi stresses.

      The same group of people, always with masks and bats, had reportedly conducted controls in the village of Moria on Tuesday night.

      They checked in homes and shops for foreign nationals, asylum seekers, volunteers and NGO-workers. According to confirmed reports, they broke the car of an Italian NGO worker with two asylum-seekers on board. Police intervened following locals’ phone calls.

      The atmosphere on the island is tense not only due to the asylum-seekers’ protest beginning of the week but also due to the objection of local authorities and residents to the government plans for closed accommodation centers.

      Far-right extremists try to take advantage of the situation, fake news against refugees, migrants and asylum seekers are spread on daily basis.

      A local group has reportedly also posted on internet calling on “armed violence” against the refugees.

      Police on Lesvos has not been famous for its intervention against far-right extremists.

      The last think the government wants, though, is a spark to provoke unprecedented situations on the island.


    • Greece tightens rules for refugee NGOs

      The parliament in Athens has pushed through a law aimed at restoring order on the Aegean islands. The laws puts restrictions on non-government organizations, which have been accused of inciting migrants to stage violent protests.
      Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said on Wednesday that NGOs will no longer be allowed to “operate unchecked” and in future they would be “strictly vetted,” the Greek newspaper, Proto Thema, reports.

      Speaking at a celebration for the centenary of the Hellenic Coast Guard, Mitsotakis said “Most NGOs do a great job. They are helpful in tackling the problem. But we know, we know it, beyond any doubt, that there are some who do not fulfill the role they are claiming. We will not tolerate this anymore.”

      NGOs providing medical, legal and other assistance to migrants on the Greek Aegean islands include Oxfam, the Danish Refugee Council, Doctors of the World, European Lawyers in Lesbos, Terre des Hommes, Refugee Support Aegean, Medecins Sans Frontieres and others.

      The prime minister’s remarks came after the deputy migration minister, Giorgos Koumoutsakos, told Proto Thema Radio that the NGOs had sprung up “like mushrooms after the rain.” "Some behave like bloodsuckers," he said.

      Inciting migrant protests

      Koumoutsakos accused some of the organizations operating on the islands, where tens of thousands of migrants are stranded after arriving from Turkey, of abusing the volatile situation to get money directly from the European Union.

      The deputy migration minister also suggested that some NGOs had incited thousands of migrants on Lesbos to hold a protest, which ended with police firing tear gas to disperse the people occupying the island capital Mytilini.

      The government began transferring refugees from the overcrowded islands to the Greek mainland last year, but an estimated 42,000 people continue to suffer in squalid and unsafe conditions in and around the island camps.

      Last week, the Greek government opened a tender for the construction of a floating barrier off Lesbos aimed at deterring migrants from crossing from the Turkish coast, which is about 10-12 kilometers away.

      #ONG #associations #NGOs

    • New request for state of emergency on #Lesvos, #Chios, #Samos

      The regional governor of the Northern Aegean, Kostas Moutzouris submitted a new call on Wednesday to declare a state of emergency on three islands, following two days of protest marches by asylum seekers demanding better living conditions and a quicker asylum procedure, and attacks by extremists in Lesvos.

      “The government was wrong to reject our request to declare a state of emergency on Lesvos, Chios and Samos. If the current situation is not an emergency, then what is?” he asked.

      “The government is imposing the creation of new migrant camps that will cost hundreds of millions and which, based on simple arithmetics, will not solve any problem – on the contrary, they will deteriorate it,” he added.

      On Tuesday, a group of about 250 asylum seekers, mostly Afghan residents of Moria, rallied outside the Municipal Theater in the island’s capital Mytilene demanding “freedom” and shouting, “Lesvos people, we are sorry.” The police intervened to prevent protesters from blocking traffic. One woman was injured in a stampede as demonstrators fled the scene to avoid possible arrest.

      On Monday riot police clashed with about 2,000 Afghan asylum seekers who tried to march to Mytilene. Reacting to the incident, residents of the village of Moria Tuesday barged into the Mytilene offices of the General Secretariat for Aegean and Island Policy demanding the closure of Moria, intensified sea patrols, and stricter monitoring of NGOs.

      Despite the tension, the government on Tuesday rejected Moutzouris’ request.

      Meanwhile, a group of about 20 youths wearing helmets and holding clubs attacked regulars at a bar in Mytilene where students and NGO employees were gathered.

      The same group roamed the town of Mytilene after midnight asking locals and foreigners to identify themselves, according to eye witnesses who talked to the police.

      Authorities believe the same individuals were in the village of Moria earlier in the afternoon checking if foreigners, asylum seekers or employees in NGOs lived or worked there.

      The masked group smashed the car of an Italian national who works for an NGO. Two asylum seekers were passengers when the incident happened.

      Police was alerted after the attacks.


    • Crisis in Lesbos as more refugees arrive

      Greek island a ‘powder keg ready to explode’ as boat landings lead to tensions with local people.

      Greek authorities are struggling to cope with rising tension on islands where pressure from a new influx of refugees and migrants has reached a critical point.

      Friction is growing between local people and asylum seekers landing in boats from Turkey. Last week the region’s most senior official likened the situation on Lesbos to a “powder keg ready to explode”. Kostas Moutzouris, governor of the north Aegean, said: “It’s crucial that a state of emergency is called.”

      More than 42,000 men, women and children are estimated to be on Lesbos, Samos, Chios, Leros and Kos. Unable to leave because of a containment policy determined by the EU, they are forced to remain on the islands until their asylum requests are processed by a system both understaffed and overstretched.

      Aid groups have repeatedly called for the islands to be evacuated. On Friday an estimated 20,000 refugees were on Lesbos, forced to endure the grim reality of Moria, a camp designed to host 3,000 at most.

      “They are living in squalid, medieval-like conditions … with barely any access to basic services, including clean and hot water, electricity, sanitation and healthcare,” said Sophie McCann, Médecins Sans Frontières’ advocacy officer. “On a daily basis our medical teams are treating the consequential deterioration of health and wellbeing.”

      But she added that the local people had also been given short shrift. “The Lesbos community has been abandoned by its own government for almost five years to deal with the consequences of a failed reception system. Like the refugee community, it is tired.”

      As anti-immigrant sentiment has surged, vigilante groups believed to be infiltrated by supporters of the far-right Golden Dawn party have surfaced. On Friday seven men armed with wooden clubs were arrested in the hilltop village of Moria on suspicion of being members of a gang apparently linked to Golden Dawn.

      “People have seen their properties destroyed, their sheep and goats have been slaughtered, their homes broken into,” said Nikos Trakellis, a community leader. “A few years back, when there were 5,000 on the island, things seemed bad enough. Now there’s a sense that the situation has really got out of hand.”

      NGOs have also been targeted. In recent weeks cars have been vandalised. Foreigners perceived to be helping refugees have spoken of intimidation. Ciaran Carney, a volunteer filmmaker teaching refugees on the island, said: “There was a week when no one [in the NGOs] wanted to leave their flats. It definitely feels like it could explode and that no one knows what will come next.”


    • Non solo Lesbos. L’estrema destra sbarca a #Chios

      «Questo è solo l’inizio». A Chios non fanno che ripeterlo dopo l’incendio della scorsa notte. Doveva essere pirotecnico lo sbarco dei neonazisti sull’isola di Chios e così è stato, la notte del 3 marzo, intorno alle due, qualcuno ha appiccato il fuoco al deposito di Stay Human Odv, la Onlus che da aprile 2018 dà servizi e beni di prima necessità ai profughi del campo di Vial. A fronte di una capienza di 1.500 persone, il campo ne ospita oltre 6mila. Quattordici bagni in tutto, 7 per sesso. Come quasi tutti gli hotspot greci, sta in mezzo a un uliveto in rovina, per 30 km tutt’intorno il nulla. Gli episodi di autolesionismo e di tentato suicidio non mancano, specie tra i minori non accompagnati.

      «Ieri stavamo smistando le scarpe» dice Musli Alievski, il fondatore della Onlus nata nel 2016. È un giovane macedone di origini rom, suo padre, in odore di pulizia etnica, prese la famiglia e scappò in Italia prima della guerra. Dopo la minaccia di Erdogan di «aprire i rubinetti», da circa una settimana sull’isola sono arrivati «quelli di Alba Dorata e i celerini». «Questo era il posto di partenza di tutto, dove portavamo le donazioni, dove prendevamo quello che serviva da portare al centro, sopra c’erano gli appartamenti dei volontari, tutto distrutto». L’incendio è doloso a detta della stessa polizia, che però ora ha altri problemi: gli isolani sono esasperati, la settimana scorsa hanno aggredito i militari che trasportavano i materiali per allestire un altro hotspot, più grande, in vista di un esodo dato ormai per imminente.

      Sporgerete denuncia per l’incendio?

      Per ora no, il clima è teso e vogliamo evitare ritorsioni e vendette sugli isolani che ci aiutano. In più sull’isola sono arrivati squadroni di celerini e di cosiddetti «volontari a difesa delle isole». Hanno già aggredito la polizia.

      Come mai la destra aggredisce la polizia?

      Perché a differenza di Lesbo, qui non ci sono grandi Ong. Non c’è Msf, l’Unhcr non opera direttamente, tutto è amministrato dai militari. E il malcontento degli isolani, eccitati dall’arrivo degli squadroni da fuori, si riversa anche su di loro. Ma non mi sento di incolpare la gente di qui, non è che si sono svegliati all’improvviso neonazisti, sono solo esasperati. Il problema è della politica europea, non della popolazione greca.

      Perché c’è bisogno di voi volontari?

      Tanto per cominciare i migranti non hanno più accesso gratuito alle visite mediche specialistiche. Un bambino iracheno ha scoperto di essere praticamente cieco solo dopo che lo abbiamo fatto visitare da un oculista. I bambini qui hanno tutti i denti neri per carenza di vitamine. Nei centri viene dato cibo precotto scaduto, senza tracciabilità, né lista di ingredienti. La stessa aggressività degli adulti spesso è causata banalmente dall’assenza di vitamine nel loro organismo.

      Avete paura?

      Più che impauriti dall’aggressione della destra, siamo delusi dalla reazione dell’Europa ai ricatti di Erdogan. L’Europa deve agire non perché impaurita o minacciata, ma perché consapevole che chi sbarca a Lampedusa non sbarca in Italia, chi sbarca a Chios non sbarca in Grecia: sbarca in Europa.

      Si parla molto degli scafisti libici, poco di quelli turchi.

      Sono criminali quanto i libici. C’è un disegno chiaro: quelli che scappano dal Medio Oriente prima finiscono nelle mani degli imprenditori turchi del tessile, lavorano nelle fabbriche, anche delle catene di abbigliamento low cost, poi raggiungono il distretto di Çeşme. Lì, chi non ha soldi per la traversata, lascia i familiari in pegno ai trafficanti. Una traversata di 15 minuti in motoscafo costa circa 2mila euro, i ricatti durano anni.

      E dall’Africa i migranti come finiscono nella rete dei trafficanti turchi?

      Gli africani che arrivano in Grecia sono per lo più nigeriani e somali. Quelli che non passano dalla Libia di solito sono quelli con più disponibilità economica. Una volta arrivati in Tunisia, Algeria e Marocco, prendono un visto di 70 euro, poi un volo per Istanbul, si trasferiscono a Çeşme o a Smirne, e da lì partono insieme agli altri che scappano dal Medio Oriente, chi da guerre, chi da persecuzioni. Selezionare i rifugiati, distinguere tra chi ha diritto a migrare e chi no, non può ridursi a una mera questione di leggi.

      Come racimolano il denaro necessario?

      Spesso dietro la traversata di un giovane c’è l’investimento dell’intero villaggio, una sorta di crowdfunding, si investe sul ragazzo più giovane e robusto, sperando che arrivi, trovi lavoro, e mandi soldi con MoneyGram o Western Union. Come nelle corse dei cavalli, si punta su quello che può farcela.


  • Briefing: Behind the new refugee surge to the Greek islands

    “They told us, the young boys, to take a gun and go fight. Because of that I escaped from there [and] came here,” Mohammed, a 16-year-old from Ghazni province in Afghanistan, said while sitting in the entrance of a small, summer camping tent on the Greek island of Lesvos in early October.

    Nearby, across a narrow streambed, the din of voices rose from behind the barbed wire-topped fences surrounding Moria, Europe’s largest refugee camp.

    With the capacity to house around 3,000 people, the camp has long since spilled out of its walls, spreading into the olive groves on the surrounding hills, and is continuing to grow each day, with dangers of sickness and accidents set to increase in the winter months ahead.

    The population of the camp exploded this summer, from about 4,500 people in May to almost 14,000 by the end of October, reflecting a spike in the number of people crossing the Aegean Sea from Turkey in recent months. So far this year, nearly 44,000 people have landed on the Greek islands, compared to around 32,500 in all of 2018.

    The increase is being led by Afghans, accounting for nearly 40 percent of arrivals, and Syrians, around 25 percent, and appears to be driven by worsening conflict and instability in their respective countries and increasingly hostile Turkish policies towards refugees.
    Isn’t it normal to see a surge this time of year?

    Arrivals to Greece usually peak in the summertime, when weather conditions are better for making the passage from the Turkish coast.

    But the increase this year has been “unprecedented”, according to Astrid Castelein, head of the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) office on Lesvos.

    Since the EU and Turkey signed an agreement in March 2016 aimed at stopping the flow of asylum seekers and migrants across the Aegean, arrivals to the Greek Islands during the summer have ranged from around 2,000 to just under 5,000 people per month.

    In July this year, arrivals rose to more than 5,000 and continued to climb to nearly 8,000 in August, before peaking at over 10,000 in September.

    These numbers are a far cry from the height of the European migration crisis in 2015, when over 850,000 people crossed the Aegean in 12 months and more than 5,000 often landed on the islands in a single day.

    Still, this year’s uptick has caused European leaders to warn about the potential that arrivals from Turkey could once again reach 2015 levels.
    What is Turkey threatening to do?

    Turkey hosts the largest refugee population in the world, at around four million people, including around 3.6 million Syrians.

    In recent months, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has repeatedly threatened to “open the gates” of migration, using the spectre of increased refugee arrivals to try to pressure the EU to support controversial plans for “a safe zone” in northern Syria. He wielded it again to try to get EU leaders to dampen their criticism of the military offensive Turkey launched at the beginning of October, which had the stated aim of carving out the zone, as well as fending off a Kurdish-led militia it considers terrorists.

    But despite the rhetoric, apprehensions of asylum seekers and migrants trying to leave Turkey have increased along with arrivals to the Greek islands.

    Between the beginning of July and the end of September, the Turkish Coast Guard apprehended around 25,500 people attempting to cross the Aegean Sea, compared to around 8,600 in the previous three months.

    “This stark increase is in line with the increase in [the] number of people crossing the Eastern Mediterranean,” Simon Verduijn, a Middle East migration specialist with the Mixed Migration Centre, said via email. “The Turkish Coast Guard seems to monitor the Aegean seas very carefully.”

    “The situation has not changed,” Ali Hekmat, founder of the Afghan Refugees Association in Turkey, said, referring to the difficulty of crossing the sea without being apprehended, “but the number of boats increased.”
    Why are there so many Afghans?

    The spike in people trying to reach the Greek islands also coincides with an increase in the number of asylum seekers and migrants crossing into Turkey.

    “We’ve noticed a general… increase in movement across the country lately,” said Lanna Walsh, a spokesperson for the UN’s migration agency, IOM, in Turkey.

    So far this year, Turkish authorities have apprehended more than 330,000 people who irregularly entered the country, compared to just under 270,000 all of last year. Similar to the Greek islands, Afghans are crossing into Turkey in greater numbers than any other nationality, accounting for 44 percent of people who have been apprehended, following a spike in Afghan arrivals that started last year.

    “It’s not surprising that people see that they no longer have a future in Turkey.”

    2018 was the deadliest year for civilians in Afghanistan out of the past decade, and the violence has continued this year, crescendoing in recent months as peace talks between the United States and the Taliban gained momentum and then collapsed and the country held presidential elections. Afghanistan is now the world’s least peaceful country, trading places with Syria, according to the Institute for Economics and Peace, an Australia-based think tank that publishes an annual Global Peace Index.

    At the same time, options for Afghans seeking refuge outside the country have narrowed. Conditions for around three million Afghans living in Iran – many without legal status – have deteriorated, with US sanctions squeezing the economy and the Iranian government deporting people back to Afghanistan.

    Turkey has also carried out mass deportations of Afghans for the past two years, changes to the Turkish asylum system have made it extremely difficult for Afghans to access protection and services in the country, and legal routes out of the country – even for the most vulnerable – have dried up following deep cuts to the US refugee resettlement programme, according to independent migration consultant Izza Leghtas.

    “It’s not surprising that people see that they no longer have a future in Turkey,” Leghtas said.
    What do the refugees themselves say?

    The stories of Afghans who have made it to Lesvos reflect these difficult circumstances. Mohammed, the 16-year-old who fled Afghanistan because he didn’t want to fight, said that the Taliban had attacked the area near his home in Ghazni province. He decided to flee when local men who were fighting the Taliban told him and other young men to take up arms. “We just want to get [an] education… We want to live. We don’t want to fight,” he said.

    Mohammed went to Iran using his Afghan passport and then crossed the border into Turkey with the help of a smuggler, walking for about 14 hours before he reached a safe location inside the country. After about a month, he boarded an inflatable dinghy with other refugees and crossed from the Turkish coast to Lesvos. “There’s no way to live in Turkey,” he said when asked why he didn’t want to stay in the country. “If they found out that I am Afghan… the police arrest Afghan people who are refugees.”

    Ahmad, a 23-year-old Afghan asylum seeker also camping out in the olive groves at Moria, left Afghanistan three years ago because of tensions between ethnic groups in the country and because of Taliban violence. He spent two years in Iran, working illegally – “the government didn’t give us permission to work,” he said – before crossing into Turkey last year. He eventually found a job in Turkey and was able to save up enough money to come to Greece after struggling to register as an asylum seeker in Turkey.

    Ali, a 17-year-old Afghan asylum seeker, was born in Iran. Ali’s father was the only member of the family with a job and wasn’t earning enough money to cover the family’s expenses. Ali also wasn’t able to register for school in Iran, so he decided to come to Europe to continue his education. “I wanted to go to Afghanistan, but I heard that Afghanistan isn’t safe for students or anyone,” Ali said.
    Is pressure growing on Syrian refugees?

    UNHCR also noticed an increase in the proportion of Syrians arriving to the Greek islands in August and September compared to previous months, according to Castelein.

    Since July, human rights organisations have documented cases of Turkish authorities forcibly returning Syrians from Istanbul to Idlib, a rebel-held province in northwestern Syria, which has been the target of an intense bombing campaign by the Syrian government and its Russian allies since April. The Turkish government has denied that it is forcibly returning people to northwest Syria, which would be a violation of customary international law.

    “I left for safety – not to take a vacation – for safety, for a safe country that has work, that has hope, that life.”

    Tighter controls on residency permits, more police checks, and increased public hostility towards Syrians amidst an economic downturn in Turkey have also added to a climate of fear. “People that don’t have a kimlik (a Turkish identity card) aren’t leaving their houses. They’re afraid they’ll be sent back to Syria,” said Mustafa, a 22-year-old Syrian asylum seeker on Lesvos who asked that his name be changed.

    Until recently, Mustafa was living in the countryside of Damascus, Syria’s capital, in an area controlled by the Syrian government. His family was displaced early on in Syria’s more than eight and a half year civil war, but he decided to leave the country only now, after being called up for mandatory military service. “I didn’t know what to do. They want you to go fight in Idlib,” he said.

    Mustafa spent a month in Istanbul before crossing to Lesvos at the end of September. “I saw that the situation was terrible in Turkey, so I decided to come here,” he added. “I left for safety – not to take a vacation – for safety, for a safe country that has work, that has hope, that life.”
    How shaky is the EU-Turkey deal?

    The military campaign Turkey launched in the Kurdish-administered part of northeast Syria at the beginning of October displaced some 180,000 people, and around 106,000 have yet to return. Another 12,000 Syrians have crossed the border into Iraq.

    A ceasefire is now in place but the future of the region remains unclear, so it’s too early to tell what impact, if any, it will have on migration across the Aegean, according to Gerry Simpson, associate director of Human Rights Watch’s crisis and conflict division.

    But Turkey’s tightening residency restrictions, deportations, and talk of mass expulsions could, Simpson said, be a “game-changer” for the EU-Turkey deal, which is credited with reducing the number of people crossing the Aegean since March 2016.

    The agreement is based on the idea that Turkey is a safe third country for asylum seekers and migrants to be sent back to, a claim human rights groups have always taken issue with.

    In the more than three years since the deal was signed, fewer than 3,000 people have been returned from Greece to Turkey. But Greece’s new government, which came to power in July, has said it will speed up returns, sending 10,000 people back to Turkey by the end of 2020.

    “This idea that [Turkey] is a safe third country of asylum was never acceptable to begin with. Obviously, now we’ve seen [that] even more concretely with very well documented returns, not only of Syrians, but also of Afghans,” Leghtas, the migration consultant, said.

    “Whether that changes the two sides’ approach to the [EU-Turkey deal] is another matter because in practical terms… the only real effect of the [deal] has been to trap people on the islands,” Simpson added.

    #îles #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Grèce #Mer_Egée #réfugiés_afghans

    • Refugees trapped on Kos: An unspeakable crisis in reception conditions

      Hundreds of refugees are forced to live in boxes made out of cardboard and reed or makeshift sheds inside and outside of the Kos hotspot, in the utmost precarious and unsuitable conditions, without access to adequate medical and legal assistance. Since last April, the Kos hotspot, located on a hill at the village of Pyli, 15km outside of the city, is overcrowded, while the number of transfers of vulnerable refugees from the island to the mainland is significantly lower[1] compared to other islands, therefore creating an unbearable sense of entrapment for the refugees. RSA staff visited the island recently, spoke with refugees[2] living at the hotspot and visited the surrounding area. The images and testimonies cited in this document point out an unspeakable crisis in reception conditions.

      A former military camp in the village of Pyli serves as the Kos hotspot, despite intense protests residents; it started operating in March 2016 following the implementation of the toxic EU – Turkey Deal. According to official data, a place designed for a maximum occupancy of 816 people and 116 containers is now accommodating 3.734 people. Given the lack of any other accommodation structure on the island, the above number includes those living in makeshift sheds inside the hotspot as well as in crumbling abandoned buildings and tents outside of it. This severe overcrowding has led the authorities to use the Pre-removal Centre as an area for the stay for asylum-seekers– who are under restriction of their freedom of movement – including vulnerable individuals, women and families.

      According to UNHCR, the majority of asylum-seekers come from Syria, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Palestine and Iraq, while children make up for 27% of the entire population. This data points out that, despite the dominant opposite and unfounded rhetoric, most of the newcomers are refugees, coming from countries with high asylum recognition rates.

      “We are living like mice”

      Two large abandoned buildings stand outside the hotspot; they are accessible only through debris, trash and a “stream” of sewage. RSA met with refugees who live there and who described their wretched living conditions. “Here, we are living like mice. We are looking for cardboard boxes and reeds to make ourselves a place to sleep. At night, there is no electricity. You look for an empty space between others, you lay down and try to sleep”, says an English-speaking man from Cameroon, who has been living in one of these abandoned buildings for two months. It is an open space full of holes in the walls and a weathered roof of rusty iron[3].

      Cardboard rooms

      African refugees, men and women have found shelter in this utterly dangerous setting. They have made a slum with big cardboard rooms, one next to the other, where the entrance is not visible. As the refugees sleeping in this area mention, there is cement and plaster falling off of the roof all the time. A vulnerable female refugee from Africa described to us her justified fear that her living conditions expose her to further danger.

      “The police told us to go find somewhere to sleep, there is no room at the hotspot. I am scared in here among so many men, because there is no electricity and it gets dark at night. But, what can I do? There was no room for me inside”.

      A blanket for each person

      The situation for Afghan families living in rooms of the other abandoned building, a few meters away, is similar. “When we take our children to the doctor, he writes prescriptions and tells us to buy them by ourselves. No one has helped us. When we arrived, they gave only one blanket to each one of us. Us women, we don’t even have the basics for personal hygiene”, says a young Afghan who has been living here for a month with her daughter and her husband. “They give us 1.5lt of water every day and pasta or potatoes almost daily”, says a young Afghan.

      In that space we met with refugees who complain about snakes getting indoors, where people sleep. Many try to shut the holes in the abandoned buildings to deter serpents from entering and to protect themselves from the cold. “We shut the holes but it is impossible to protect ourselves, this building is falling apart, it is really dangerous”, says a man from Afghanistan.

      There are no toilets outside of the hotspot; a cement trough is used as a shower for men, women and children, along with a hose from the fields nearby. There, they collect water in buckets and take it to their sheds. Alongside the road leading to the hotspot, refugees are carrying on their shoulders mattresses they have found in the trash, to put them in their tents and sheds.

      According to UNHCR, following a request by the Reception and Identification Authority, 200 tents were donated to the hotspot. This said, the Authorities have yet to find an appropriate space to set them up.

      Unbearable conditions inside the hotspot

      At the moment, there is not really a “safe zone” for unaccompanied minors, despite the fact that there is a space that was designed for this purpose, as families seem to be living in UNHCR tents in that space. The area is not completely protected and according to reports adults, who use the hygiene facilities, can enter there.

      Due to the overcrowding, lodgings have been set up in almost every available space, whereas, according to testimonies, there are serious problems with electricity, water supply, sewage disposal and cleanliness. The refugees mention that there is only one public toilet for those not living in a container, lack of clothing, shoes and hygiene products. Some told us that they left the hotspot because of the conditions there, in search of a living space outside of it. Such is the case of a Syrian refugee with his son, who are sleeping in a small construction near the hotspot entrance. “I found two mattresses in the trash. It was so filthy inside and the smell was so unbearable that I couldn’t stand it. I was suffering of skin problems, both me and the child”, he says. Tens of other refugees are sleeping in parks and streets downtown and depend upon solidarity groups in order to attend to their basic needs.

      Several refugees told us that they are in search of ways to work, even for free, in order to be of use. “I want to do something, I can’t just sit around doing nothing, it is driving me crazy. Would you happen to know where I could be of help? They say they don’t need me at the hotspot, is there anything I could do for the town of Kos? Clean, help somehow?”, a young Palestinian asks.

      Inadequate access to medical care

      Refugees living in the hotspot point out the inadequate or non-existent medical care. “We queue up and, if we manage to get to a doctor, they tell us to drink water, a lot of water, and sometimes they give paracetamol. There is no doctor at night, not even for emergencies. If someone is sick, the police won’t even call an ambulance. Take a taxi, they tell us. The other day, my friend was sick with a high fever, we called a taxi, but because the taxi wouldn’t come to the hotspot entrance, we carried him down the road for the taxi to pick us up”, says a young refugee.

      According to reports, at this moment there is only one doctor at the hotspot and only one Arab-speaking interpreter among the National Public Health Organization (NPHO) staff; during the summer, because of the limited NHPO staff, there were serious delays in medical tests and vulnerability screenings. Also, Kos hospital is understaffed, with whatever the consequences might be for the locals and the refugees in need of medical care[4].

      Not having a Social Security Number makes things even worse for those in need of medication, as they have to pay the entire price to buy it. The amount of 90 EURO that they receive as asylum-seekers from the cash program (cash card), especially when they have a health issue, is not enough. Such is the testimony of a woman from Africa, living in one of the abandoned buildings outside the hotspot. “It is dangerous here, we are suffering. It is difficult in these conditions, with our health, if you go to the hospital, they won’t give you medication. They will write you a prescription and you will have to buy it with your own money”, she tells us.

      Problems with free access to medical care for the thousands of newcomers increased sharply since July 2019 because the Foreigner Health Card system did not work and the Minister of Labor revoked[5] the circular on granting a Social Security Number to asylum-seekers, since the matter has yet to be regulated.

      Under these circumstances, survivors of a shipwreck (caused by the Coast Guard ramming a refugee boat near Kos resulting in the death of a 3-year old boy and a man) were transferred last week. According to the press, the 19-year old mother of the child, a few hours after the shipwreck and while still in shock, grave mourning and exhaustion, was transferred to the Reception and Identification Centre in order to be registered.

      Repression and police brutality

      According to the testimonies of at least four refugees, their protests are mostly dealt with repression, while there are reports on use of police violence in these situations. “Every time there is an issue, we go to the police and tell them do something, you have to protect us. They tell us to go away and if we insist, they start yelling and, if we don’t leave, they beat us”, says a minor Afghan who is living in the hotspot with his family. “If we complain, no one listens to you. It is a waste of time and you risk getting in trouble”, a 41-year old man from Africa, who has been living for the past six months inside the hotspot in a shed made of cardboard boxes, explains to us. ”A month ago, when we had the first rain, people were complaining, but it did nothing other than the riot police coming over”, they are telling us.

      Huge delays in the asylum process

      Many of those we met have yet to receive the threefold document and still have no access to the cash program. Newcomers have only received their “Restriction of Freedom Decision”, valid for 25 days; several have told us that the information on the asylum process is incomplete and they are having difficulty understanding it. At the end of the 25 days, they usually receive a document titled “Service Note of Release” where there is mention of the geographical restriction on the island of Kos. Lately, a notification for the intention to claim asylum is required.

      According to reports, at the moment there is a large number of people whose asylum process has not advanced (backlog). “Some of us have been here for 4-6 months and we haven’t even had a pre-interview[6] or an interview yet”, says a woman from Cameroon who is living in the hotspot.

      Arrivals have particularly increased in the past months, while refugees arriving in smaller islands, such as Kalymnos, Symi, are transferred to the Kos and Leros hotspots. According to UNHCR, a recent transfer of refugees from Kos to the mainland took place on 6 October and concerned 16 individuals. [7]. Due to the fact that in Kos the geographic restriction was not usually lifted in the past months, hundreds of people are trapped in these extremely precarious conditions. This appears to be happening because of the delays in the asylum process and the lack of medical staff, resulting to vulnerable individuals not being identified, combined with the lack of available space in the mainland structures and the prioritization of other islands that have hotspots.

      In Kos, there is free legal aid by four lawyers in total (a Registry lawyer, Metadrasi, Greek Refugee Council, Arsis), while there is great lack of interpreters both in the hotspot and the local hospital.

      Lack of access to education

      With regard to the refugees children’s education, evening classes in the Refugee Reception and Education Centres (RREC) have yet to start. According to UNHCR data, more than 438 children of school and pre-school age – aged 5 to 17-years old – are living in the hotspot[8] .

      In total, 108 children attend the Centre of non-typical education (KEDU) of Arsis Organization near the hotspot, funded by UNHCR. Any educational activity inside the hotspot, take place as part of an unemployment program by the Manpower Employment Organization. According to reports, the kindergarten providing formal education that operated in the previous two years inside the hotspot under the Ministry of Education is now closed as safety reasons were invoked.

      Detention: bad conditions and detention of vulnerable individuals

      The Pre-removal Centre next to the hotspot, with a capacity of 474 people, is currently detaining 325 people. According to UNHCR observations, the main nationalities are Iraq, Cameroon, Egypt, Syria and Pakistan.

      According to reports, newcomers in nearby islands that are transferred to Kos are also detained there until they submit their asylum claim. Also, people who have violated the geographic restriction are also held there. Among the detainees, there are people who have not been subjected to reception procedures process due to shortcomings of the Reception and Identification Authority[9]. Characteristically, following his visit to Kos in August 2019, Philippe Leclerc, the UNHCR Representative in Greece, reported: “I also visited the pre-removal centre on Kos, which since May 2019 has broadly been used as a place for direct placement in detention, instead of reception, of asylum-seekers, including women and those with specific needs, some of whom without prior and sufficient medical or psychosocial screening, due to lack of enough personnel”.

      In the context of the pilot project implemented in Lesvos, even extremely vulnerable individuals are being detained, despite the fact that there is no doctor in the Pre-removal Centre. An African refugee with a serious condition told us “I was in the Pre-removal Centre for three and a half months. I almost collapsed. I showed them a document from my country’s hospital, where my condition is mentioned, I asked them for a doctor, but they brought a nurse. Now I sleep in a room made of cardboard and reed outside of the hotspot”.

      According to complaints by at least two people who have been detained at the Pre-removal Centre, the police broke the camera of their mobile phones, that resulted in the phones not functioning and them losing their contacts and the only means of communication with their families. “Inside the Pre-removal Centre we didn’t have access to a doctor nor to medication. There was a nurse, but we were receiving no help. Also, we didn’t have access to a lawyer. When we complained, they transferred us to another wing, but all the wings were in an equally bad condition. Many times those who complained were being taken to the police station”, says a 30-year old man from Gambia.


    • 800 migrants arrive in Greece within 48 hours, living conditions described as ’horrible’

      Migrant arrivals to Greece continue unabated: Nearly 800 migrants crossed from Turkey to Greece in just 48 hours this week, marking the highest pace of arrivals in 40 months. The Council of Europe during a visit to migrant camps on the Greek islands warned of an explosive situation and described living conditions there as ’horrible.’

      On Wednesday, the Greek coastguard registered the arrival of 790 migrants in just 48 hours. As state media reported, the migrants arrived by land and by sea on boats at Alexandropouli on the mainland and the islands of Samos and Farmakonisi.

      The country has not seen this many arrivals of migrants via sea since the EU-Turkey deal came into effect in March 2016. The number of migrants arriving in Greece in the first ten months of this year has already overshot last year’s figure of around 50,500.

      According to the latest UNHCR figures, 55,348 migrants have arrived, 43,683 of them by sea, between the start of 2019 and Sunday.

      Dramatic situation

      The surge has led to dramatic overcrowding in camps on the Greek Aegean islands, where the migrant population has more than doubled over the past six months, according to the German press agency dpa. Even before, the camps were packed at more than twice their capacity. Outbreaks of violence and fires at the EU-funded island camps have further escalated the situation.

      During a visit to Greek island camps on Wednesday, Dunja Mijatovic, the Commissioner for Human Rights at the Council of Europe, said she had witnessed people queuing for food or to use a bathroom for more than three hours at refugee camps for asylum seekers on the Greek islands of Lesbos, Samos and Corinth.

      “The people I have met are living in horrible conditions and in an unbearable limbo,” she said at a news briefing on Thursday; adding the migrants were struggling to cope with overcrowding, lack of shelter, poor hygiene conditions and substandard access to medical care.

      “I saw children with skin diseases not treated. I heard about no medications or drugs at all available to these people. No access to health, no proper access to health and many other things that are really quite shocking for Europe in the 21st century,” Mijatovic continued.


      To ease the overcrowding, the Greek government has already started relocating people to the mainland. Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis announced that 20,000 migrants would be moved by the end of the year. With the current resurgence of arrivals, however, decongestion is not in sight. Mijatovic urged the authorities to transfer asylum seekers from islands to the mainland as soon as possible. “It is an explosive situation”, she said. “This no longer has anything to do with the reception of asylum-seekers,” she said. “This has become a struggle for survival,” she concluded at the end of her visit.


    • Sur l’île de #Samos, une poudrière pour des milliers d’exilés confinés à l’entrée de l’UE

      Avec 6 000 migrants pour 650 places, le camp grec de Samos est une poudrière ravagée par un incendie à la mi-octobre. Alors que la Grèce redevient la première porte d’entrée dans l’UE, autorités comme réfugiés alertent sur la catastrophe en cours. Reportage sur cette île, symptôme de la crise européenne de l’accueil.

      La ligne d’horizon se fond dans le ciel d’encre de Samos. L’île grecque des confins de l’Europe est isolée dans la nuit d’automne. Sur le flanc de la montagne qui surplombe la ville côtière de Vathy, des lumières blanches et orange illuminent un amas de blocs blancs d’où s’élèvent des voix. Elles résonnent loin dans les hauteurs de cyprès et d’oliviers, où s’égarent des centaines de tentes. Ces voix sont celles d’Afghans et de Syriens en majorité, d’Irakiens, de Camerounais, de Congolais, de Ghanéens… Pour moitié d’entre eux, ce sont des femmes et des enfants. Un monde au-dehors qui peine à s’endormir malgré l’heure tardive.

      À deux kilomètres des côtes turques, l’île de Samos (Grèce) est rejointe en Zodiac par les exilés. © Dessin Elisa Perrigueur

      Ils sont 6 000 à se serrer dans les conteneurs prévus pour 648 personnes, et la « jungle » alentour, dit-on ici. Ce camp est devenu une ville dans la ville. On y compte autant de migrants que d’habitants. « Samos est un petit paradis avec ce point cauchemardesque au milieu », résume Mohammed, Afghan qui foule ces pentes depuis un an. Les exilés sont arrivés illégalement au fil des mois en Zodiac, depuis la Turquie, à deux kilomètres. Surpeuplé, Vathy continue de se remplir de nouveaux venus débarqués avec des rêves d’Europe, peu à peu gagnés par la désillusion.

      À l’origine lieu de transit, le camp fut transformé en 2016 en « hotspot », l’un des cinq centres d’identification des îles Égéennes gérés par l’État grec et l’UE. Les migrants, invisibles sur le reste de l’île de Samos, sont désormais tous bloqués là le temps de leur demande d’asile, faute de places d’hébergement sur le continent grec, où le dispositif est débordé par 73 000 requêtes. Ils attendent leur premier entretien, parfois calé en 2022, coincés sur ce bout de terre de 35 000 habitants.

      Naveed Majedi, Afghan de 27 ans rencontré à Vathy. © Elisa Perrigueur
      Naveed Majedi, un Afghan de 27 ans, physique menu et yeux verts, évoque la sensation d’être enlisé dans un « piège » depuis sept mois qu’il s’est enregistré ici. « On est bloqués au milieu de l’eau. Je ne peux pas repartir en Afghanistan, avec les retours volontaires [proposés par l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations de l’ONU – ndlr], c’est trop dangereux pour ma vie », déplore l’ancien traducteur pour la Force internationale d’assistance à la sécurité à Kaboul.

      Le camp implose, les « habitations » se négocient au noir. Naveed a payé sa tente 150 euros à un autre migrant en partance. Il peste contre « ces tranchées de déchets, ces toilettes peu nombreuses et immondes. La nourriture mauvaise et insuffisante ». Le jeune homme prend des photos en rafale, les partage avec ses proches pour montrer sa condition « inhumaine », dit-il. De même que l’organisation Médecins sans frontières (MSF) alerte : « On compte aujourd’hui le plus grand nombre de personnes dans le camp depuis 2016. La situation se détériore très vite. Le lieu est dangereux pour la santé physique et mentale. »

      Il n’existe qu’une échappatoire : un transfert pour Athènes en ferry avec un relogement à la clef, conditionné à l’obtention d’une « carte ouverte » (en fonction des disponibilités, de la nationalité, etc.). Depuis l’arrivée en juillet d’un premier ministre de droite, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, celles-ci sont octroyées en petit nombre.

      Se rêvant dans le prochain bateau, Naveed scrute avec obsession les rumeurs de transferts sur Facebook. « Il y a des nationalités prioritaires, comme les Syriens », croit-il. Les tensions entre communautés marquent le camp, qui s’est naturellement divisé par pays d’origine. « Il y a constamment des rixes, surtout entre des Afghans et des Syriens, admet Naveed. Les Africains souvent ne s’en mêlent pas. Nous, les Afghans, sommes mal perçus à cause de certains qui sont agressifs, on nous met dans le même sac. » Querelles politiques à propos du conflit syrien, embrouilles dans les files d’attente de repas, promiscuité trop intense… Nul ne sait précisément ce qui entraîne les flambées de colère. La dernière, sanglante, a traumatisé Samos.

      Le camp était une poudrière, alertaient ces derniers mois les acteurs de l’île dans l’indifférence. Le 14 octobre, Vathy a explosé. Dans la soirée, deux jeunes exilés ont été poignardés dans le centre-ville, vengeance d’une précédente rixe entre Syriens et Afghans au motif inconnu. En représailles, un incendie volontaire a ravagé 700 « habitations » du camp. L’état d’urgence a été déclaré. Les écoles ont fermé. Des centaines de migrants ont déserté le camp.

      L’Afghan Abdul Fatah, 43 ans, sa femme de 34 ans et leurs sept enfants ont quitté « par peur » leur conteneur pour dormir sur la promenade du front de mer. Les manifestations de migrants se sont multipliées devant les bureaux de l’asile. Des policiers sont arrivés en renfort et de nouvelles évacuations de migrants vers Athènes ont été programmées.

      Dans l’attente de ces transferts qui ne viennent pas, les migrants s’échappent quand ils le peuvent du camp infernal. Le jour, ils errent entre les maisons pâles du petit centre-ville, déambulent sur la baie, patientent dans les squares publics.

      « Nous ne sommes pas acceptés par tous. Un jour, j’ai voulu commander à dîner dans une taverne. La femme m’a répondu que je pouvais seulement prendre à emporter », relate Naveed, assis sur une place où trône le noble Lion de Samos. Un homme du camp à l’air triste sirote à côté une canette de bière. Une famille de réfugiés sort d’un supermarché les bras chargés : ils viennent de dépenser les 90 euros mensuels donnés par le Haut-Commissariat pour les réfugiés (HCR) dans l’échoppe où se mêlent les langues grecque, dari, arabe et français.

      D’autres migrants entament une longue marche vers les hauteurs de l’île. Ils se rendent à l’autre point de convergence des réfugiés : l’hôpital de Samos. Situé entre les villas silencieuses, l’établissement est pris d’assaut. Chaque jour entre 100 et 150 demandeurs s’y pressent espérant rencontrer un docteur, de ceux qui peuvent rédiger un rapport aidant à l’octroi d’un statut de « vulnérabilité » permettant d’obtenir plus facilement une « carte ouverte ».

      Samuel et Alice, un couple de Ghanéens ont mis des semaines à obtenir un rendez-vous avec le gynécologue de l’hôpital. © Elisa Perrigueur

      La « vulnérabilité » est théoriquement octroyée aux femmes enceintes, aux personnes atteintes de maladies graves, de problèmes psychiques. Le panel est flou, il y a des failles. Tous le savent, rappelle le Dr Fabio Giardina, le responsable des médecins. Certains exilés désespérés tentent de simuler des pathologies pour partir. « Un jour, on a transféré plusieurs personnes pour des cas de tuberculose ; les jours suivants, d’autres sont venues ici, nombreuses, en prétextant des symptômes, relate le médecin stoïque. On a également eu beaucoup de cas de simulations d’épilepsie. C’est très fatigant pour les médecins, stressés, qui perdent du temps et de l’argent pour traiter au détriment des vrais malades. Avec la nouvelle loi en préparation, plus sévère, ce système pourrait changer. »

      En neuf mois, l’établissement de 123 lits a comptabilisé quelque 12 000 consultations ambulatoires. Les pathologies graves constatées : quelques cas de tuberculose et de VIH. L’unique psychiatre a démissionné il y a quelques mois. Depuis un an et demi, deux postes de pédiatres sont vacants. « Le camp est une bombe à retardement, lâche le Dr Fabio Giardina. Si la population continue d’augmenter, on franchira la ligne rouge. »

      Dans le couloir où résonnent les plaintes, Samuel Kwabena Opoku, Ghanéen de 42 ans, est venu pour sa femme Alice enceinte de huit mois. Ils ont mis longtemps à obtenir ce rendez-vous, qui doit être pris avec le médecin du camp. « Nous, les Noirs, passons toujours au dernier plan, accuse-t-il. Une policière m’a lancé un jour : vous, les Africains [souvent venus de l’ouest du continent – ndlr], vous êtes des migrants économiques, vous n’avez rien à faire là. » Ils sont les plus nombreux parmi les déboutés.
      Le maire : « L’Europe doit nous aider »

      Samuel, lui, raconte être « menacé de mort au Ghana. Je devais reprendre la place de mon père, chef de tribu important. Pour cela, je devais sacrifier le premier de mes fils, eu avec mon autre femme. J’ai refusé ce crime rituel ». Son avocate française a déposé pour le couple une requête d’urgence, acceptée, devant la Cour européenne des droits de l’homme. Arrivés à Samos en août, Samuel et Alice ont vu le gynécologue, débordé, en octobre pour la première fois. L’hôpital a enregistré 213 naissances sur l’île en 2019, dont 88 parmi la population migrante.

      Des ONG internationales suisses, françaises, allemandes sillonnent l’institution, aident aux traductions, mais ne sont qu’une quinzaine sur l’île. « Nous sommes déconnectées des autorités locales qui communiquent peu et sommes sans arrêt contrôlées, déplore Domitille Nicolet, de l’association Avocats sans frontières. Une situation que nous voulons dénoncer mais peu de médias s’intéressent à ce qui se passe ici. »

      Une partie de la « jungle » du camp de Vathy, non accessible aux journalistes ni aux ONG. © Elisa Perrigueur

      Chryssa Solomonidou, habitante de l’île depuis 1986 qui donne des cours de grec aux exilés, est en lien avec ces groupes humanitaires souvent arrivés ces dernières années. « Les migrants et ONG ont rajeuni la ville, les 15-35 ans étaient partis à cause de la crise », relate-t-elle. Se tenant droite dans son chemisier colorée au comptoir d’un bar cossu, elle remarque des policiers anti-émeute attablés devant leurs cafés frappés. Eux aussi sont les nouveaux visages de cette ville « où tout le monde se connaissait », souligne Chryssa Solomonidou. En grand nombre, ils remplissent tous les hôtels aux façades en travaux après une saison estivale.

      « J’ai le cœur toujours serré devant cette situation de misère où ces gens vivent dehors et nous dans nos maisons. C’est devenu ici le premier sujet de conversation », angoisse Chryssa. Cette maman a assisté, désemparée, à la rapide montée des ressentiments, de l’apparition de deux univers étrangers qui se croisent sans se parler. « Il y a des rumeurs sur les agressions, les maladies, etc. Une commerçante vendait des tee-shirts en promotion pour 20 euros. À trois hommes noirs qui sont arrivés, elle a menti : “Désolée, on ferme.” Elle ne voulait pas qu’ils les essayent par peur des microbes », se souvient Chryssa.

      Il y a aussi eu cette professeure, ajoute-t-elle, « poursuivie en justice par des parents d’élèves » parce qu’elle voulait faire venir des migrants dans sa classe, ce que ces derniers refusaient. L’enseignante s’est retrouvée au tribunal pour avoir appelé les enfants à ignorer « la xénophobie » de leurs aînés. « Ce n’est pas aux migrants qu’il faut en vouloir, mais aux autorités, à l’Europe, qui nous a oubliés », déplore Chryssa.

      « L’UE doit nous aider, nous devons rouvrir les frontières [européennes – ndlr] comme en 2015 et répartir les réfugiés », prône Giorgos Stantzos, le nouveau maire de Vathy (sans étiquette). Mais le gouvernement de Mitsotakis prépare une nouvelle loi sur l’immigration et a annoncé des mesures plus sévères que son prédécesseur de gauche Syriza, comme le renvoi de 10 000 migrants en Turquie.

      Des centaines de migrants ont embarqué sur un ferry le 21 octobre, direction Athènes. © Elisa Perrigueur

      Les termes de l’accord controversé signé en mars 2016 entre Ankara et l’UE ne s’appliquent pas dans les faits. Alors que les arrivées en Grèce se poursuivent, la Turquie affirme que seuls 3 des 6 milliards d’euros dus par l’Europe en échange de la limitation des départs illégaux de ses côtes auraient été versés. Le président turc Erdogan a de nouveau menacé au cours d’un discours le 24 octobre « d’envoyer 3,6 millions de migrants en Europe » si celle-ci essayait « de présenter [son] opération [offensive contre les Kurdes en Syrie – ndlr] comme une invasion ».

      À Samos, où les avions militaires turcs fendent régulièrement le ciel, ce chantage résonne plus qu’ailleurs. « Le moment est très critique. Le problème, ce n’est pas l’arrivée des familles qui sont réfugiées et n’ont pas le choix, mais les hommes seuls. Il n’y a pas de problèmes avec les habitants mais entre eux », estime la municipalité. Celle-ci « n’intervient pas dans le camp, nous ne logeons pas les réfugiés même après les incendies, ce n’est pas notre job ».

      L’édile Giorgos Stantzos multiplie les déclarations sur Samos, trop éclipsée médiatiquement, selon les locaux, par la médiatisation, légitime, de l’île de Lesbos et de son camp bondé, avec 13 000 migrants. Au cours d’un rassemblement appelé le 21 octobre, Giorgos Stantzos a pris la parole avec les popes sur le parvis de la mairie de Samos. « Nous sommes trop d’êtres humains ici […], notre santé publique est en danger », a-t-il martelé sous les applaudissements de quelques milliers d’habitants.

      La municipalité attend toujours la « solution d’urgence » proposée par l’État grec et l’UE. Bientôt, un nouveau camp devrait naître, loin des villes et des regards. Un mastodonte de 300 conteneurs, d’une capacité de 1 000 à 1 500 places, cernés de grillages de l’OTAN, avec « toutes les facilités à l’intérieur : médecins, supermarchés, électricité, etc. », décrypte une source gouvernementale. Les conteneurs doivent être livrés mi-novembre et le camp devrait être effectif à la fin de l’année. « Et le gouvernement nous a assuré qu’il organiserait des transferts de migrants vers le continent toutes les semaines d’ici la fin novembre pour désengorger Samos », précise le maire Giorgos Stantzos.

      Sur les quais du port, le soir du 21 octobre, près de 700 Afghans, Syriens, Camerounais, Irakiens… ont souri dans le noir à l’arrivée du ferry de l’État aux lumières aveuglantes. Après s’y être engouffrés sans regret, ils ont fait escale au port du Pirée et voulu rejoindre des hébergements réquisitionnés aux quatre coins du continent. Quelque 380 passagers de ce convoi ont été conduits en bus dans le nord de la Grèce. Eux qui espéraient tant de cette nouvelle étape ont dû faire demi-tour sous les huées de villageois grecs : « Fermez les frontières », « Chassez les clandestins ».

      Boîte noire :

      L’actuel camp de conteneurs de Vathy, entouré de barbelés, n’est accessible qu’avec l’autorisation du gouvernement, et il est donc uniquement possible de se rendre dans la « jungle » de tentes alentour.

      Dès le 10 octobre, nous avons formulé des demandes d’interviews avec le secrétaire de la politique migratoire, Giorgos Koumoutsakos (ou un représentant de son cabinet), la responsable du « hotspot » de Samos et/ou un représentant de l’EASO, bureau européen de l’asile. Le 15 octobre, nous avons reçu une réponse négative, après les « graves incidents » de la veille. Nous avons réitéré cette demande les 20 et 23 octobre, au cours de notre reportage à Samos. Avec un nouveau refus des autorités grecques à la clef, qui évoquent une « situation trop tendue » sur les îles.


  • Διαμαρτυρία ανηλίκων στη Μόρια

    Oλοένα και αυξάνεται η πίεση στο καζάνι της Μόριας. Μόλις μία μέρα μετά την αναχώρηση σχεδόν 1.500 προσφύγων από το ΚΥΤ, μια μίνι εξέγερση των ανήλικων εγκλωβισμένων ήρθε να υπενθυμίσει ότι η κατάσταση συνεχίζει να είναι απελπιστική. Και θα συνεχίσει, όσο σε έναν χώρο που είναι φτιαγμένος για 3.000 ανθρώπους στοιβάζονται αυτή τη στιγμή πάνω από 9.400 ψυχές, εκ των οποίων οι 750 είναι ανήλικοι.

    Μερίδα αυτών των ανηλίκων και ειδικότερα των νεοεισερχομένων ήταν αυτή που ξεκίνησε τη χθεσινή διαμαρτυρία, ζητώντας την άμεση αναχώρησή τους από τη Λέσβο ή έστω τη μεταφορά τους σε ξενοδοχεία, αφού από τη μέρα που πάτησαν το πόδι τους στο ΚΥΤ είναι υποχρεωμένοι να ζουν όλοι μαζί στοιβαγμένοι σε μια μεγάλη σκηνή που έχει στηθεί στον χώρο της Πρώτης Υποδοχής και η οποία μέχρι πρόσφατα έπαιζε τον ρόλο της ρεσεψιόν για όλους τους νεοαφιχθέντες, αλλά πλέον έχει μετατραπεί σε χώρο προσωρινής διαμονής ανηλίκων, έως ότου δοθεί κάποια λύση.

    Η ένταση ξεκίνησε το μεσημέρι της Τετάρτης, όταν ομάδα ανηλίκων έσπασε την πόρτα της σκηνής και ορισμένοι επιχείρησαν να βάλουν φωτιά σε κάδους απορριμμάτων. Παράλληλα, άλλη ομάδα από τους 300 ανήλικους που βρίσκονται στην τέντα κινήθηκε προς την έξοδο και μπλόκαρε τον δρόμο έξω από την πύλη, φωνάζοντας συνθήματα όπως Athens-Athens και Hotel-Hotel, θέλοντας έτσι να κάνουν κατανοητά τα αιτήματά τους.

    Σύντομα, στον χώρο επενέβη η Αστυνομία, που απώθησε με δακρυγόνα τους ανήλικους, και όταν η κατάσταση ηρέμησε ξεκίνησαν κάποιες διαπραγματεύσεις μεταξύ των δύο πλευρών, χωρίς να καταγραφούν μέχρι αυτή την ώρα συλλήψεις ή τραυματισμοί.

    Παρών στη Μόρια κατά τη διάρκεια των επεισοδίων ήταν και ο ύπατος αρμοστής της UNHR, Φίλιπ Λεκλέρκ, που έφθασε στη Μυτιλήνη προκειμένου να έχει προσωπική εικόνα της κατάστασης που έχει δημιουργηθεί, αλλά και για να συμμετάσχει σε σύσκεψη όλων των δημάρχων του Βορείου Αιγαίου που πραγματοποιήθηκε υπό τον νέο περιφερειάρχη, Κώστα Μουτζούρη.
    Ακροδεξιά λογική Μουτζούρη και δημάρχων

    Σε αυτήν, κυριολεκτικά επικράτησε η ακροδεξιά λογική, με τους συμμετέχοντες να καταλήγουν σε ένα πλαίσιο που βρίθει ξενοφοβικών και ρατσιστικών στερεοτύπων. Στην τετράωρη σύσκεψη -και με τη συμμετοχή των περιφερειακών διευθυντών Αστυνομίας και Λιμενικού-, οι δήμαρχοι με τον περιφερειάρχη κατέληξαν ομόφωνα σε ένα κείμενο με αιτήματα που θα αποσταλεί στο υπουργείο Προστασίας του Πολίτη, όπου θα ζητούν την εφαρμογή όσων υποσχόταν προεκλογικά η Ν.Δ. Αναλυτικά οι αυτοδιοικητικοί ζητούν :

    ● Να μη δημιουργηθεί καμία νέα δομή για πρόσφυγες και μετανάστες στα νησιά της περιφέρειας.

    ● Την άμεση μεταφορά των υφισταμένων δομών εκτός των αστικών ιστών και την οριστική διακοπή λειτουργίας των ΚΥΤ της Σάμου, της Μόριας και της ΒΙΑΛ στη Χίο.

    ● Την αναλογική διασπορά των προσφύγων στο σύνολο της χώρας, με άμεση αποσυμφόρηση των νησιών και μαζικές επιστροφές στην Τουρκία, στο πλαίσιο της κοινής δήλωσης Ε.Ε. – Τουρκίας, ώστε η σημερινή αναλογία του 1:7 (μετανάστες προς γηγενείς) των νησιών να μειωθεί στο 1:170 της ηπειρωτικής χώρας.

    ● Την άμεση και πλήρη αποζημίωση των κατοίκων που έχουν υποστεί καταπάτηση και ζημιές στο φυτικό και ζωικό κεφάλαιο από τους πρόσφυγες και μετανάστες.

    ● Την άμεση καταγραφή και τον έλεγχο των ΜΚΟ που δραστηριοποιούνται στην περιφέρεια.

    ● Την αποτελεσματική φύλαξη των θαλάσσιων συνόρων και την άμεση υλοποίηση των προεκλογικών δεσμεύσεων της κυβέρνησης και των πρόσφατων αποφάσεων του ΚΥΣΕΑ.

    ● Τη στήριξη των εμπλεκόμενων δημόσιων υπηρεσιών και πρωτίστως του Λιμενικού Σώματος, της ΕΛ.ΑΣ. και των ενόπλων δυνάμεων για την καθοριστική συμβολή τους στην αντιμετώπιση του προβλήματος και την απαίτηση για άμεση ενίσχυσή τους με προσωπικό και μέσα.


    Avec ce commentaire de Vicky Skoumbi via la mailing-list Migreurop, reçu le 05.09.2019 :

    Le reportage du quotidien grec Efimerida tôn Syntaktôn donne plus des précisions sur les incidents qui ont éclaté hier mercredi au hot-spot de Moria à Lesbos. Il s’agissait d’une mini-révolte des mineurs bloqués sur l’île, qui demandaient d’être transférés à Athènes ou du moins d’être logés à l’hôtel. Même après le transfert 1.500 personnes au continent, il y a actuellement à Moria 9.400 personnes dont 750 mineurs pour une capacité d’accueil de 3.000. Les mineurs qui arrivent depuis quelques jours sont entassés dans une grande #tente qui servait jusqu’à maintenant de lieu de Premier Accueil, une sorte de réception-desk pour tous les arrivants, qui s’est transformé en gîte provisoire pour 300 mineurs. Hier,vers midi, un groupe de mineurs ont cassé la porte de la tente et ont essayé de mettre le feu à des poubelles, tandis qu’un deuxième groupe de mineurs avait bloqué la route vers la porte du camp en criant Athens-Athens et Hotel-Hotel, faisant ainsi comprendre qu’ils réclament leur transfert à Athènes ou à défaut à des chambres d’hôtel. La police est intervenue en lançant de gaz lacrymogènes, et une fois le calme répandu ; des pourparlers se sont engagés avec les deux groupes. Il n’y a pas eu ni arrestations ni blessés.

    En même temps la situation est encore plus désespérante au hot-spot de Samos où pour une capacité d’accueil de 648 personnes y sont actuellement entassées presque 5.000 dans des conditions de vie inimaginables. Voir le tableau édité par le Ministère de Protection du Citoyen (alias de l’Ordre Public) (https://infocrisis.gov.gr/5869/national-situational-picture-regarding-the-islands-at-eastern-aegean-sea-4-9-2019/?lang=en)

    #Moria #Lesbos #Lesvos #migrations #asile #réfugiés #camps_de_réfugiés #Grèce #hotspot #révolte #résistance #mineurs #MNA #enfants #enfance #violence

    • Διαμαρτυρία εκατοντάδων ανηλίκων για τις απάνθρωπες συνθήκες διαβίωσης στη Μόρια

      Ένταση επικράτησε το μεσημέρι της Τετάρτης στο Κέντρο Υποδοχής και Ταυτοποίησης Προσφύγων στην Μόρια, καθώς περίπου 300 ανήλικοι πρόσφυγες και μετανάστες διαμαρτυρήθηκαν για τις απάνθρωπες συνθήκες διαβίωσης στο κέντρο, που έχουν γίνει ακόμα χειρότερες τις τελευταίες μέρες λόγω της άφιξης εκατοντάδων νέων ανθρώπων.

      Όπως αναφέρουν πληροφορίες της ιστοσελίδας stonisi.gr, περίπου 300 ανήλικοι πρόσφυγες και μετανάστες προχώρησαν σε συγκέντρωση διαμαρτυρίας έξω από το κέντρο της Μόριας, θέλοντας να διαμαρτυρηθούν για τις απάνθρωπες συνθήκες διαβίωσης.

      Οι ίδιες πληροφορίες αναφέρουν ότι πάρθηκε απόφαση να εκκενωθεί η πτέρυγα των ανηλίκων ενώ έγινε και περιορισμένη χρήση χημικών από την αστυνομία. Σημειώνεται ότι τη Δευτέρα έφτασαν στο νησί εκατοντάδες άνθρωποι, που πλέον κατευθύνθηκαν σε δομές της Βόρειας Ελλάδας, όπου είναι ήδη αδύνατη η στέγαση περισσότερων ανθρώπων.



      Avec ce commentaire de Vicky Skoumbi (05.09.2019) :

      Des centaines de mineurs protestent contre les conditions de vie inhumaines en Moria
      La tension a monté d’un cran mercredi à midi au centre de réception et d’identification des réfugiés de Moria. Environ 300 réfugiés et immigrants ont protesté contre les conditions de vie inhumaines dans le centre, qui se sont encore aggravées ces derniers jours avec l’arrivée de centaines de personnes.

      Selon des informations du site Internet stonisi.gr , quelque 300 réfugiés et migrants mineurs se sont rassemblés hors du centre de la Moria, dans le but de protester contre ces conditions de vie inhumaines.

      La même source d’’information indique qu’une décision a été prise d’évacuer l’aile des mineurs tandis que la police a fait un usage moderé de gaz chimiques. Il est à noter que lundi, des centaines de personnes sont arrivées sur l’île, se dirigeant maintenant vers des structures situées dans le nord de la Grèce, où il est déjà impossible d’accueillir plus de personnes.

  • #Migrerrance... de camp en camp en #Grèce...
    Des personnes traitées comme des #paquets de la poste

    Greece moves 1400 asylum-seekers from crowded Lesbos camp as migrant numbers climb

    Greek officials and aid workers on Monday began an emergency operation to evacuate 1,400 migrants from a dangerously overcrowded camp on Lesbos as numbers of arrivals on the island continue to climb.

    Six hundred and forty people were bussed away from Moria camp, which has become notorious for violence and poor hygiene, with 800 more following.

    “I hope to get out of this hell quickly,” 21-year-old Mohamed Akberi, who arrived at the camp five days earlier, told Agence-France Presse.

    Lesbos has been hit hard by the migrant crisis, with authorities deadlocked over what to do with new arrivals. Some 11,000 have been put in Moria camp, an old army barracks in a remote part of the island which has a capacity of around 3,000.

    The camp has been criticised sharply by human rights organisations for its squalid living conditions and poor security. Last month, a 14-year-old Afghan boy was killed in a fight and women in the camp are targets for sexual violence.

    The migrants removed from Moria on Monday will be taken by ferry to Thessaloniki, where they will be transported to Nea Kavala, a small camp in northern Greece near the border with North Macedonia.

    Lesbos saw 3,000 new arrivals in August, with around 650 arriving in just one day last week, and another 400 over the weekend.

    The emergency transfer from Moria was agreed by the government at an emergency meeting on Saturday, with unaccompanied minors and other vulnerable people given priority.

    The Greek government agreed to do away with the appeal procedures for asylum seekers to facilitate their swift return to Turkey.

    Greece will also step up border patrols with the help of the EU border control agency Frontex.

    Nearly 1,900 migrants have been forcibly returned to Turkey under a deal brokered by the European Union in 2016, and 17,000 migrants have voluntarily left Greece for their home countries over the last three years.

    Aid workers have questioned whether the emergency move provides a meaningful solution to Greece’s migrant problem.

    “While the situation in Moria is certainly diabolical, the government’s response to move people doesn’t solve the problem of overcrowding and is more of a PR exercise without addressing the issues that will be exacerbated by the move,” one aid worker with Nea Kavala, who wished to remain anonymous, told the Telegraph. “It’s very much an out-of-the-frying-pan-into- the-fire situation.”

    Stella Nanou, a spokesperson at the UNHCR in Greece, told the Daily Telegraph: “The situation is an urgent one in Moria and requires urgent relief. It is obvious more needs to be done in the short term. In the long term, solutions need to be provided to decongest and relieve the situation on the islands. We stand ready to help.”

    #Moria #Lesbos #Lesvos #camps_de_réfugiés #Grèce_du_Nord #déplacement #asile #migrations #réfugiés
    ping @isskein

    • Grèce : Plus de 1 000 migrants transférés de l’île de Lesbos vers le continent

      Un premier groupe de 600 migrants ont été transférés lundi matin du camp de Moria, à Lesbos, vers le continent. Un deuxième contingent de 700 personnes devraient aussi être acheminé vers le continent grec dans l’après-midi. Ce week-end, le gouvernement avait annoncé une série de mesure pour faire face à l’afflux de migrants, notamment le transfert rapide des mineurs non accompagnés et des personnes les plus vulnérables des îles vers le continent.

      Les premières évacuations de l’île grecque de Lesbos vers le continent ont débuté lundi 2 septembre. Un premier contingent de 600 migrants installés dans le camp saturé de Moria ont été évacués lundi matin.

      Six cent trente-cinq Afghans, transportant des bagages encombrants, se sont précipités pour monter dans les bus de la police, sous la supervision du Haut-commissariat des Nations unies aux réfugiés (#HCR).

      Dans la cohue générale, ils ont ensuite embarqué sur le navire « Caldera Vista » vers le port de Thessalonique, où ils doivent être acheminés vers le camp de réfugiés de Nea Kavala, dans la ville de Kilkis situé dans le nord de la Grèce.

      Un autre groupe de 700 migrants devaient également être transférés dans l’après-midi vers le même lieu, dans le cadre de la décision du gouvernement grec de désengorger le camp de Moria.

      « 3 000 arrivées rien qu’au mois d’août »

      Samedi 31 août, le gouvernement grec a annoncé une série de mesure pour faire face à l’afflux de migrants, notamment le transfert rapide des mineurs non accompagnés et des personnes les plus vulnérables des îles vers le continent mais aussi la suppression des procédure d’appels aux demandes d’asile pour faciliter les retours des réfugiés en Turquie.

      Le camp de Moria, centre d’enregistrement et d’identification de Lesbos, héberge déjà près de 11 000 personnes, soit quatre fois la capacité évaluée par le HCR.

      Le nombre de migrants n’a cessé de grossir cet été. L’agence onusienne parle de « plus de 3 000 arrivées rien qu’au mois d’août ». Jeudi soir, 13 bateaux sont arrivés à Lesbos avec plus de 540 personnes dont 240 enfants, une hausse sans précédent qui inquiète le gouvernement conservateur arrivé au pouvoir le 7 juillet dernier.

      Ce week-end, 280 autres migrants sont arrivés en Grèce, souvent interceptés en pleine mer par les garde-côtes de l’Union européenne et de la Grèce.

      Sur la côte nord de l’île où les canots pneumatiques chargés de migrants débarquent le plus souvent, la surveillance a été renforcée dimanche. Une équipe de l’AFP a pu constater les allers et venues des patrouilleurs en mer, et la vigilance accrue des policiers sur les rives grecques.
      Depuis l’accord UE-Turquie signé en mars 2016, le contrôle aux frontières a été renforcé, rendant l’accès à l’île depuis la Turquie de plus en plus difficile. Mais, ces derniers mois près de 100 personnes en moyenne parviennent chaque jour à effectuer cette traversée.


    • Message de Vicky Skoumbi reçu via la mailing-list de Migreurop, 03.09.2019:

      Des scènes qui rappellent l’été 2015 se passent actuellement à Lesbos.

      Le nombre particulièrement élevé d’arrivées récentes à Lesbos (Grèce) – plus que 3.600 pour le seul mois d’août- a obligé le nouveau gouvernement de transférer 1.300 personnes vulnérables vers le continent et notamment vers la commune Nouvelle Kavalla à Kilkis, au nord-ouest du pays. Il s’agit juste d’un tiers de réfugiés reconnus comme vulnérables qui restent bloqués dans l’île, malgré la levée de leur confinement géographique. Jusqu’à ce jour le gouvernement Mitsotakis avait bloqué tout transfert vers le continent, même au moment où la population de Moria avait dépassé les 10.000 dont 4.000 étaient obligés de vivre en dehors du camp, dans des abris de fortune sur les champs d’alentours. Le service médical à Moria y est désormais quasi-inexistant, dans la mesure où des 40 médecins qui y travaillaient, il ne reste actuellement que deux qui ne peuvent s’occuper que des urgences – et encore-, tandis qu’il n’y a plus aucune ambulance disponible sur place. Ceci a comme résultant que les personnes qui arrivent ne passent plus de contrôle médical avec tous les risques sanitaires que cela puisse créer dans un camp si surpeuplé.

      Le nouveau président de la Région de l’Egée du Nord, M. Costas Moutzouris, de droite sans affiliation, avait déclaré que toutes les régions de la Grèce doivent partager le ‘fardeau’, car « les îles ne doivent pas subir une déformation, une altération raciale, religieuse, et ethnique ».

      Source (en grec) Efimerida tôn Syntaktôn (https://www.efsyn.gr/ellada/dikaiomata/209204_sti-moria-kai-sti-sykamnia-i-lesbos-anastenazei)

      C’est sans doute l’arrivée de 13 bateaux avec 550 personnes à Sykamia (Lesbos) samedi dernier, qui a obligé le gouvernement de céder et d’organiser un convoi vers le continent. Mais l’endroit choisi pour l’installation de personnes transférées est un campement déjà surchargé – pour une capacité d’accueil de 700 personnes, 924 y sont installés dans de containers et 450 dans des tentes. Avec l’arrivée de 1.300 de plus ni le réseau d’eau potable, ni les deux générateurs électriques ne sauraient tenir. La situation risque de devenir totalement chaotique, d’autant plus que le centre d’accueil en question est géré sans aucune structure administrative par une ONG, le Conseil danois pour les Réfugiés. En même temps, l’endroit est exposé aux vents et les tentes qui y sont montés pour les nouveaux arrivants risquent de s’envoler à la première rafale. D’après le quotidien grec Efimerida tôn Syntktôn (https://www.efsyn.gr/ellada/dikaiomata/209222_giati-i-boreia-ellada-kathistatai-afiloxeni-sto-neo-kyma-prosfygon) toutes les structures du Nord de la Grèce ont déjà dépassé la limite de leurs capacités d’accueil.

    • Greece to increase border patrols and deportations to curb migrant influx

      Greece is to step up border patrols, move asylum-seekers from its islands to the mainland and speed up deportations in an effort to deal with a resurgence in migrant flows from neighboring Turkey.

      The government’s Council for Foreign Affairs and Defence convened on Saturday for an emergency session after the arrival on Thursday of more than a dozen migrant boats carrying around 600 people, the first simultaneous arrival of its kind in three years.

      The increase in arrivals has piled additional pressure on Greece’s overcrowded island camps, all of which are operating at least twice their capacity.

      Arrivals - mostly of Afghan families - have picked up over the summer, and August saw the highest number of monthly landings in three years.

      Greece’s Moria camp on the island of Lesbos - a sprawling facility where conditions have been described by aid organizations as inhumane - is also holding the largest number of people since the deal was agreed.

      On Saturday, the government said it would move asylum-seekers to mainland facilities, increase border surveillance together with the European Union’s border patrol agency Frontex and NATO, and boost police patrols across Greece to identify rejected asylum seekers who have remained in the country.

      It also plans to cut back a lengthy asylum process, which can take several months to conclude, by abolishing the second stage of appeals when an application is rejected, and deporting the applicant either to Turkey or to their country of origin.

      “The asylum process in our country was the longest, the most time consuming and, in the end, the most ineffective in Europe,” Greece’s deputy citizen protection minister responsible for migration policy, Giorgos Koumoutsakos, told state television.

      Responding to criticism from the opposition that the move was unfair and unlawful, Koumoutsakos said:

      “Asylum must move quickly so that those who are entitled to international protection are vindicated ... and for us to know who should not stay in Greece.”

      The government was “determined to push ahead with a robust returns policy because that is what the law and the country’s best interest impose, in accordance with human rights,” he said.

      Greece was the main gateway to northern Europe in 2015 for nearly a million migrants and refugees from war-torn and poverty-stricken countries in the Middle East and Africa.

      A deal between the EU and Turkey in March 2016 reduced the influx to a trickle, but closures of borders across the Balkans resulted in tens of thousands of people stranded in Greece.

      Humanitarian organizations have criticized Greece for not doing enough to improve living conditions at its camps, which they have described as “shameful”.


    • Grèce : les migrants de Lesbos désemparés dans leur nouveau camp

      « Nous avons quitté Moria en espérant quelque chose de mieux et finalement, c’est pire » : Sazan, un Afghan de 20 ans, vient d’être transféré, avec mille compatriotes, de l’île grecque de Lesbos saturée, dans le camp de #Nea_Kavala, dans le nord de la Grèce.

      Après six mois dans « l’enfer » de Moria sur l’île de Lesbos, Sazan se sent désemparé à son arrivée à Nea Kavala, où il constate « la difficulté d’accès à l’eau courante et à l’électricité ».

      A côté de lui, Mohamed Nour, 28 ans, entouré de ses trois enfants, creuse la terre devant sa tente de fortune pour fabriquer une rigole « pour protéger la famille en cas de pluie ».

      Mille réfugiés et migrants sont installés dans 200 tentes, les autres seront transférés « dans d’autres camps dans le nord du pays », a indiqué une source du ministère de la Protection du citoyen, sans plus de détails.

      L’arrivée massive de centaines de migrants et réfugiés la semaine dernière à Lesbos, principale porte d’entrée migratoire en Europe, a pris de court les autorités grecques, qui ont décidé leur transfert sur des camps du continent.

      Car le camp de Moria, le principal de Lesbos, l’un des plus importants et insalubres d’Europe, a dépassé de quatre fois sa capacité ces derniers mois.

      En juillet seulement, plus de 5.520 personnes ont débarqué à Lesbos - un record depuis le début de l’année - auxquelles se sont ajoutés 3.250 migrants au cours de quinze premiers jours d’août, selon l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations (OIM).

      – Tensions à Moria -

      Quelque 300 mineurs non accompagnés ont protesté mercredi contre leurs conditions de vie dans le camp de Moria et demandé leur transfert immédiat à Athènes. De jeunes réfugiés ont mis le feu à des poubelles et la police a dispersé la foule avec des gaz lacrymogènes, a rapporté l’agence de presse grecque ANA.

      « Nous pensions que Moria était la pire chose qui pourrait nous arriver », explique Mohamed, qui s’efforce d’installer sa famille sous une tente de Nea Kavala.

      « On nous a dit que notre séjour serait temporaire mais nous y sommes déjà depuis deux jours et les conditions ne sont pas bonnes, j’espère partir d’ici très vite », assène-t-il.

      Des équipes du camp œuvrent depuis lundi à installer des tentes supplémentaires, mais les toilettes et les infrastructures d’hygiène ne suffisent pas.

      Le ministère a promis qu’avant la fin du mois, les migrants seraient transférés dans d’autres camps.

      Mais Tamim, 15 ans, séjourne à Nea Kavala depuis trois mois : « On nous a dit la même chose (que nous serions transférés) quand nous sommes arrivés (...). A Moria, c’était mieux, au moins on avait des cours d’anglais, ici on ne fait rien », confie-t-il à l’AFP.

      Pour Angelos, 35 ans, employé du camp, « il faut plus de médecins et des infrastructures pour répondre aux besoins de centaines d’enfants ».

      – « Garder espoir » -

      Plus de 70.000 migrants et réfugiés sont actuellement bloqués en Grèce depuis la fermeture des frontières en Europe après la déclaration UE-Turquie de mars 2016 destinée à freiner la route migratoire vers les îles grecques.

      Le Premier ministre de droite Kyriakos Mitsotakis, élu début juillet, a supprimé le ministère de la Politique migratoire, créé lors de la crise migratoire de 2015, et ce dossier est désormais confié au ministère de la Protection du citoyen.

      Face à la recrudescence des arrivées en Grèce via les frontières terrestre et maritime gréco-turques depuis janvier 2019, le gouvernement a annoncé samedi un train de mesures allant du renforcement du contrôle des frontières et des sans-papiers à la suppression du droit d’appel pour les demandes d’asile rejetées en première instance.

      Des ONG de défense des réfugiés ont critiqué ces mesures, dénonçant « le durcissement » de la politique migratoire.

      La majorité des migrants arrivés en Grèce espère, comme destination « finale », un pays d’Europe centrale ou occidentale.

      « Je suis avec ma famille ici, nous souhaitons aller vivre en Autriche », confirme Korban, 19 ans, arrivé mardi à Nea Kavala.

      « A Moria, les rixes et la bousculade étaient quotidiennes, c’était l’enfer. La seule chose qui nous reste maintenant, c’est d’être patients et de garder espoir », confie-t-il.


  • UNHCR shocked at death of Afghan boy on #Lesvos; urges transfer of unaccompanied children to safe shelters

    UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is deeply saddened by news that a 15-year-old Afghan boy was killed and two other teenage boys injured after a fight broke out last night at the Moria reception centre on the Greek island of Lesvos. Despite the prompt actions by authorities and medical personnel, the boy was pronounced dead at Vostaneio Hospital in Mytilene, the main port town on Lesvos. The two other boys were admitted at the hospital where one required life-saving surgery. A fourth teenager, also from Afghanistan, was arrested by police in connection with the violence.

    The safe area at the Moria Reception and Identification Centre, RIC, hosts nearly 70 unaccompanied children, but more than 500 other boys and girls are staying in various parts of the overcrowded facility without a guardian and exposed to exploitation and abuse. Some of them are accommodated with unknown adults.

    “I was shocked to hear about the boy’s death”, said UNHCR Representative in Greece, Philippe Leclerc. “Moria is not the place for children who are alone and have faced profound trauma from events at home and the hardship of their flight. They need special care in dedicated shelters. The Greek government must take urgent measures to ensure that these children are transferred to a safe place and to end the overcrowding we see on Lesvos and other islands,” he said, adding that UNHCR stands ready to support by all means necessary.

    Frustration and tensions can easily boil over in Moria RIC which now hosts over 8,500 refugees and migrants – four times its capacity. Access to services such as health and psychological support are limited while security is woefully insufficient for the number of people. Unaccompanied children especially can face unsafe conditions for months while waiting for an authorized transfer to appropriate shelter. Their prolonged stay in such difficult conditions further affects their psychology and well-being.

    Nearly 2,000 refugees and migrants arrived by sea to Greece between 12 and 18 August, bringing the number of entries this year to 21,947. Some 22,700 people, including nearly 1,000 unaccompanied and separated children, are now staying on the Greek Aegean islands, the highest number in three years.


    #MNA #mineurs #enfants #enfance #Moria #décès #mort #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Grèce #camps_de_réfugiés #Lesbos #bagarre #dispute #surpopulation

    • Cet article du HCR, m’a fait pensé à la #forme_camps telle qu’elle est illustrée dans l’article... j’ai partagé cette réflexion avec mes collègues du comité scientifique du Centre du patrimoine arménien de Valence.

      Je la reproduis ici :

      Je vous avais parlé du film documentaire « #Refugistan » (https://seenthis.net/messages/502311), que beaucoup d’entre vous ont vu.

      Je vous disais, lors de la dernière réunion, qu’une des choses qui m’avait le plus frappé dans ce film, c’est ce rapprochement géographique du « camp de réfugié tel que l’on se l’imagine avec des #tentes blanches avec estampillons HCR »... cet #idéal-type de #camp on le voit dans le film avant tout en Afrique centrale, puis dans les pays d’Afrique du Nord et puis, à la fin... en Macédoine. Chez nous, donc.

      J’ai repensé à cela, ce matin, en voyant cette triste nouvelle annoncée par le HCR du décès d’un jeune dans le camps de Moria à Lesbos suite à une bagarre entre jeunes qui a lieu dans le camp.

      Regardez l’image qui accompagne l’article :

      Des tentes blanches avec l’estampillons « UNHCR »... en Grèce, encore plus proche, en Grèce, pays de l’Union européenne...

      Des pensées... que je voulais partager avec vous.

      #altérité #cpa_camps #altérisation

      ping @reka @isskein @karine4

    • Greek refugee camp unable to house new arrivals

      Authorities on the Greek island of Lesvos say they can’t house more newly arrived migrants at a perpetually overcrowded refugee camp that now is 400 percent overcapacity.

      Two officials told AP the Moria camp has a population of 12,000 and no way to accommodate additional occupants.

      The officials say newcomers are sleeping in the open or in tents outside the camp, which was built to hold 3,000 refugees.

      Some were taken to a small transit camp run by the United Nations’ refugee agency on the north coast of Lesvos.

      The island authorities said at least 410 migrants coming in boats from Turkey reached Lesvos on Friday.

      The officials asked not to be identified pending official announcements about the camp.


  • #Richard_Gere à Lampedusa « keeps saying that he is ’not interested in politics - basta’ and that rescue is not political but spiritual. Sigh... »

    Source : Maurice Stierl, présent à la conférence de presse :


    Richard Gere qui, comme vous le savez probablement a fait ces jours son cirque sur un bateau humanitaire #Open_Arms...

    Richard Gere embarque à bord de l’Open Arms

    L’acteur Richard Gere est monté à bord de l’Open Arms ce vendredi. L’acteur et activiste est venu apporter son aide et son soutien au navire humanitaire, bloqué depuis 8 jours, alors que les pas européens lui refusent d’accoster. 121 personnes se trouvent à bord.


    #ONG #sauvetage #migrations #Méditerranée #asile #acteurs #VIP #VIPs #politique #spiritualité

  • Op-ed: Winter has arrived, thousands left at its mercy in Greece’s hot-spots

    The capacity of the hotspots in #Lesvos, #Samos, #Chios is exceeded by somewhere between 100 and 250 per cent. People including vulnerable groups like children, sick people and pregnant women are accommodated in anything from small summer tents to makeshift shelters and damaged prefabricated houses, left at the mercy of the hard weather. Further the lack of hot water and limited sanitation makes hygiene a problem and with very few NGO’s still operating in the hotspots there is a shortage of even basic provisions like milk powder and diapers on top of the extreme conditions. Traumatized, mentally ill or disabled people do not have sufficient access to proper medical, psychological support and treatment and the with the combination of confinement, lack of information and perspective tensions are running high with incidents of violence and self-harm.


    #îles #Grèce #asile #migrations #réfugiés #chiffres #statistiques #hiver #sur-population #hotspots #Lesbos #Leros #Kos

  • EU-Turkey deal ’driving suicide and self-harm’ among refugees trapped in Greek camps

    A deal struck by the European Union to slow refugee boat crossings to Greece is driving rising rates of suicide and self-harm in squalid camps, Human Rights Watch (HRW) has warned.

    Asylum seekers detained on islands in the Aegean Sea have described people setting themselves on fire, hanging themselves or cutting their wrists, with a third of those on Chios witnessing a suicide.

    New research by HRW found children were among those being driven to desperation in conditions increasing the trauma already suffered in the countries they have fled.

    “The mental impact of years of conflict, exacerbated by harsh conditions on the Greek islands and the uncertainty of inhumane policies, may not be as visible as physical wounds, but is no less life-threatening,” said Emina Ćerimović, a disability rights researcher for the group.

    “The EU and Greece should take immediate action to address this silent crisis and prevent further harm.”

    Dozens of asylum seekers, including children, reported rising anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and other mental illnesses as they wait months on end in “horrific conditions” to see whether they will be taken to the Greek mainland or deported to Turkey.

    A 26-year-old Syrian man, who has been detained on Lesbos for more than three months pending deportation, said he has attempted to kill himself.

    Bilal said he was held in a police station for two months, attempting suicide in a cell, before being taken to the notorious Moria camp.

    “All this time [at the police station] I had seen no doctor,” he said. “Then I hurt myself in the police station, and then they brought me here.”

    The camp, now used as a detention centre for asylum seekers to be transferred to Turkey, has seen deadly fires break out and had to be evacuated after tents froze in the winter.

    Migrants being held there told HRW how they were being tormented by the wait to hear their fate, with anxiety compounded by delayed and changed meetings with authorities and a lack of information and interpreters.

    Ahmad, a 20-year-old Syrian, was moved to Lesbos from Chios in May and does not know whether he will be sent back or onwards to Turkey.

    “I’m in a nervous situation,” he said. “Yesterday, an Algerian guy hurt himself [by cutting] … my feelings are dead.”

    Families are among those detained in Moria, including a Kurdish woman from Syria with four children.

    “My hope is dead since they brought me here,” Rabiha Hadji told HRW. “We saw all the terrible miseries in Syria but me and my children haven’t seen a jail [until coming to Greece].”

    Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), which provides medical care on Lesbos and the island of Samos, has reported a high prevalence of depression, anxiety and psychosis, and a significant increase in suicide attempts and self-harm this year.

    A representative said poor conditions in camps were a particular risk to former prisoners and torture victims, adding: “For people who have experienced extreme violence in detention back in their countries of origin, a place surrounded by barbed wire, the presence of police, and violent clashes clearly cannot be a proper place for them.”

    Amir, a 26-year-old Iranian asylum seeker who has been detained on Lesbos since April, said conditions in Moria constantly reminded him of prison in Iran.

    “I see the fences and I remember my past,” he said.

    “During the first week I was here, I couldn’t sleep all week … I had nightmares of the torture I’ve been through in the military prison.”

    Almost 13,000 asylum seekers are currently being held on Greek islands, where 9,500 more have arrived so far this year despite the threat of deportation.

    In December, the EU and Greek authorities ended exemptions for vulnerable groups including unaccompanied children, pregnant women, disabled people and torture victims that previously protected them from detention in island camps, despite an appeal from 13 major NGOs.

    The EU is now pressuring Greece to speed up asylum decisions and deportations to Turkey, where 1,200 people had been returned between the EU-Turkey deal coming into force in March 2016 and June.

    HRW warned that while lengthy procedures were worsening refugees’ distress, “length of asylum procedures should not be reduced at the expense of the quality of the process”.

    It has documented cases with a lack of capable interpreters during vital asylum interviews, “serious gaps” in access to information and legal help and authorities prioritising migrants according to nationality.

    The practice most commonly sees Syrians fast-tracked over Afghans, Iraqis, Bangladeshis and countries with low application success rates, fuelling tensions within camps that sometimes spill over into violence.

    “Greek authorities, with EU support, should ensure asylum seekers have meaningful access to a fair and efficient asylum procedure based on individual claims, not nationality,” a spokesperson for HRW said, urging Greece to end the policy of containment on its islands and transfer asylum seekers to the mainland, where children can be enrolled in school and adults can work.

    “The EU and the Greek government should work to restore the dignity and humanity of people seeking protection, not foster conditions that cause psychological harm,” Ms Ćerimović said.

    The report is the latest damning verdict of the EU-Turkey deal, which has seen the main refugee route to Europe switch from the comparatively shorter and safer Aegean Sea to the treacherous passage between Libya and Italy.

    The agreement committed Turkey to accept the return of most asylum seekers who travelled through its territory to Greek islands, in exchange for billions of euros in aid, visa liberalisation for Turkish citizens, and revived negotiations for Turkish accession to the EU.

    Talks have since broken down over a series of rows over European nations banning Turkish referendum rallies, support for Kurdish groups in Syria and concerns over the crackdown following an attempted coup against Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

    Research by Save the Children previously found the deal had dramatically reduced the number of refugees journeying over the Aegean Sea to Greece but had given people smugglers “a firmer grip on a hugely profitable business”.

    A study by Harvard University found girls as young as four had been raped in an Athens refugee camp, while asylum seekers elsewhere in the country were selling sex to raise money to be smuggled out.

    But Europol hailed “success” against people smuggling after setting up the European Migrant Smuggling Centre, identifying 17,500 suspected smugglers in 2016, intercepting messages, seizing documents and destroying boats.

    More than 100,000 migrants have arrived in Europe so far this year by sea, mainly from sub-Saharan Africa, Bangladesh and Syria, with 2,300 dying in the attempt.


    #suicide #accord_UE-Turquie #réfugiés #asile #migrations #Grèce #camps_de_réfugiés #piège #îles #Chios #PTSD #santé_mentale #Lesbos #Lesvos #prostitution #enfants #viols #mineurs #Moria #hotspots
    cc @i_s_

    • EU/Greece: Asylum Seekers’ Silent Mental Health Crisis

      In research conducted in May and June 2017 on the island of Lesbos, Human Rights Watch documented the deteriorating mental health of asylum seekers and migrants – including incidents of self-harm, suicide attempts, aggression, anxiety, and depression – caused by the Greek policy of “containing” them on islands, often in horrifying conditions, to facilitate speedy processing and return to Turkey.


    • Greece : A dramatic deterioration for asylum seekers on Lesbos

      The report, A dramatic deterioration for asylum seekers on Lesbos – based on MSF medical data and the testimonies of patients – describes the recent drastic cuts in providing health care on the island, along with reductions in legal aid, and the closure of shelters and other essential services.

      #santé #rapport #santé_mentale #statistiques #chiffres #vulnérabilité

      Dans le rapport :


    • Moria, il laboratorio della brutale intolleranza anti-migrante

      L’estate, si sa, le retate si accelerano, la repressione va avanti in silenzio. Ma Moria, sull’isola di Lesbo, costituisce forse un punto di non ritorno: il palesamento della brutalità anti-profughi, cristallizzata da mesi negli hotspot, nei campi e sui confini, ora dilagante e impunita. Calais, Ventimiglia, Moria. Non è nuovo che il campo greco dove sono intrappolati, persino da più di un anno, richiedenti asilo, vada in fiamme per la giusta ribellione di persone parcheggiate in container, tra sterpaglie, senza cure né accesso ai legali. A queste persone in fuga, l’Europa riserva, infatti, detenzione infinita e sistematica in attesa del rimpatrio in Turchia, in base all’accordo UE-Turchia, o verso i rispettivi Paesi di origine.


    • Lesvos: urla dal silenzio. Detenzione arbitraria e respingimenti illegali. Gli accordi con gli stati di transito cancellano il diritto alla vita.

      I sistemi di controllo delle frontiere si sono dimostrati in tensione sempre più forte con i doveri di soccorso e assistenza, come è apparso più evidente nelle isole greche di fronte alla costa turca e nelle acque antistanti la Tripolitania. Nell’opinione pubblica, soprattutto per effetto della campagna diffamatoria nei confronti delle ONG, portata avanti dagli organi di informazione più seguiti, si è quasi annullata la distinzione tra scafisti, intermediari, trafficanti ed organizzazioni non governative indipendenti (o presunte tali) che praticano attività di soccorso in mare e di assistenza a terra. Attività che andrebbero tutelate, e non attaccate, per difendere i diritti fondamentali della persona, a partire dal diritto alla vita.


    • Trapped. Asylum Seekers in Greece

      Emina Ćerimović and photographer Zalmaï investigate the mental health crisis facing asylum seekers on the island of Lesbos.

      The psychological impact of conflict, exacerbated by harsh conditions, uncertainty and inhumane policies, is not as visible as physical injury. But it’s just as life-threatening.


    • Les femmes et les enfants réfugiés sont davantage exposés aux agressions sexuelles dans le climat de tensions et de surpopulation régnant dans les centres d’accueil des îles grecques

      Le HCR, l’Agence des Nations Unies pour les réfugiés, est très préoccupé par les déclarations de certains demandeurs d’asile dénonçant harcèlement et violences sexuels dans les centres d’accueil situés sur les îles grecques qui ne respectent pas les normes d’accueil requises. Le HCR se félicite toutefois des mesures prises par le gouvernement en vue de régler la question de la surpopulation et des conditions de vie désastreuses dans ces centres.

      En 2017, le HCR a reçu des informations émanant de 622 survivants de violences sexuelles et de genre sur les îles grecques de la mer Egée, dont 28% ont été subies après leur arrivée en Grèce. Les formes les plus courantes de violences dénoncées par les femmes concernaient des comportements incorrects, du harcèlement sexuel et des tentatives d’agression sexuelle.

      La situation est particulièrement inquiétante dans les centres d’accueil et d’identification de Moria (#Lesbos) et de #Vathy (#Samos) où des milliers de réfugiés continuent d’être abrités dans des hébergements inadéquats sans sécurité suffisante. Quelque 5 500 personnes séjournent dans ces centres, soit le double de la capacité prévue. Les informations faisant état de harcèlement sexuel sont particulièrement nombreuses à #Moria.


    • Exclusive: Violence breaks out between residents of refugee camp and police on Greek island of #Samos

      Police clashed with residents from a refugee camp on the Greek island of Samos on Saturday morning, an NGO has told Euronews.

      The refugees and asylum seekers were staging a protest march about living conditions in the camp but had their route blocked by police at around 7.30 am local time, a member of the NGO said.

      “There were no more than 60 to 70 people there, they were one-on-one with police,” they added.

      Police fired warning shots and used tear gas and “beat up” some of those demonstrating, according to the NGO.

      One refugee sent an image to Euronews that showed his back with two marks across it (pictured in the main image of this article).

      “Things in Samos aren’t working well, that’s why we went on the march,” he said.

      “I saw police charge at the protesters,” Jerome Fourcade, an independent photo journalist based in Samos, told Euronews.

      Around 10 NGO workers were taken in by police at the scene of the clashes at 8.30am and held for a number of hours: “They said they were verifying our ID cards,” one said.

      Fourcade was also detained by police when he tried to photograph those demonstrating.

      Authorities asked to look at his photographs, but he refused arguing that he had not been arrested so they did not have the right.

      He was released around 10.30 am once all the residents had returned to the refugee camp.

      Overcrowding is a serious issue in the Samos camp, which is designed to host a maximum of around 650 people, while there are roughly 4,000 people living there and in the “jungle” surrounding it.

      Most people have no direct access to sanitation and live in flimsy tents or shelters they built themselves, the NGO worker said.

      “They are surrounded by pests — barely a day goes by when I’m not sent a photo of someone who has found a snake in their tent or been bitten by a scorpion or a rat,” they added.

      “The camp is overflowing with garbage, it’s 26 degrees today, so it’s festering ... these are extremely inhumane conditions.”

      Police clashed with residents from a refugee camp on the Greek island of Samos on Saturday morning, an NGO has told Euronews.

      The refugees and asylum seekers were staging a protest march about living conditions in the camp but had their route blocked by police at around 7.30 am local time, a member of the NGO said.

      “There were no more than 60 to 70 people there, they were one-on-one with police,” they added.
      Police stand in front of refugees and asylum seekers from Samos camp

      Police fired warning shots and used tear gas and “beat up” some of those demonstrating, according to the NGO.

      One refugee sent an image to Euronews that showed his back with two marks across it (pictured in the main image of this article).

      “Things in Samos aren’t working well, that’s why we went on the march,” he said.

      “I saw police charge at the protesters,” Jerome Fourcade, an independent photo journalist based in Samos, told Euronews.

      Around 10 NGO workers were taken in by police at the scene of the clashes at 8.30am and held for a number of hours: “They said they were verifying our ID cards,” one said.

      Fourcade was also detained by police when he tried to photograph those demonstrating.

      Authorities asked to look at his photographs, but he refused arguing that he had not been arrested so they did not have the right.

      He was released around 10.30 am once all the residents had returned to the refugee camp.
      Police stand in front of refugees and asylum seekers from Samos camp

      Overcrowding is a serious issue in the Samos camp, which is designed to host a maximum of around 650 people, while there are roughly 4,000 people living there and in the “jungle” surrounding it.

      READ MORE: Refugees on Samos live in “a huge camp of lost souls”

      Most people have no direct access to sanitation and live in flimsy tents or shelters they built themselves, the NGO worker said.

      “They are surrounded by pests — barely a day goes by when I’m not sent a photo of someone who has found a snake in their tent or been bitten by a scorpion or a rat,” they added.

      “The camp is overflowing with garbage, it’s 26 degrees today, so it’s festering ... these are extremely inhumane conditions.”
      Valerie Gauriat
      Inside Samos refugee campValerie Gauriat
      Valerie Gauriat
      Inside Samos refugee campValerie Gauriat

      This is not the first time the inhabitants of the camp have demonstrated, with three peaceful protests taking place in January along with another that turned violent, although “nothing as bad as this,” according to the NGO.

      Saturday marked the first time police used tear gas on the asylum seekers and refugees, it said.

      A police spokesman for the North Aegean islands told Euronews that a group of 100 migrants attempted to march into the city to protest about living conditions in and around the camp.

      “They were stopped by the police and there was some tension,” he added. The spokesperson is based in Lesbos and said he did not know anything about the use of tear gas or the police detentions.

      The clashes came a day before Greeks were set to vote in both the European Parliamentary elections and the first round of the municipal elections, when mayors and regional governors are appointed.


    • MSF: 3 migrant children attempted suicide, 17 had injured themselves

      Children are the real victims of the Migration policy, many of them are not in position to comply with the harsh realities. According to a press release by Doctors Without Borders / Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), Greece, in the summer months of July and August, three children attempted suicide and 17 had injured themselves. Ten of a total of 73 children referred to MSF were under the age of six, the youngest being just two.

      Vulnerable people trapped in islands pay for inhumane policies of EU-Turkey Agreement. About 24,000 men, women and children seeking protection in Europe are trapped in tragic living conditions on Greek islands, while Greek and Greek European authorities have deliberately abandoned them, the MSF said in the press release:

      The devastating crisis that affects the health of thousands of vulnerable people is the result of a problematic reception system, lack of protection mechanisms and inadequate service provision. This shows that the European Union’s policy of restricting and deterring migration management has failed.

      For over four years, Doctors Without Borders has been working in several Greek islands, but today humanitarian and medical intervention is largely a matter for voluntary organizations that replace state responsibilities. Today, Doctors Without Borders has once again been forced to scale up its activities: hundreds of medical sessions are held daily in Lesvos, Samos and Chios, while in coordination with other voluntary and non-governmental organizations Doctors Without Borders is increasing for the immigrant population and distribute basic essentials on a regular basis.

      “The situation in the Greek islands is not new. The overcrowding in refugee camps is a crisis caused by European policies and has had a huge negative impact on men, women and children for years, ”says Vassilis Stravaridis, Director General of Médecins Sans Frontières. “More than 3 years have passed since the EU-Turkey Agreement and should we consider that the Greek and European authorities are using this embarrassing failure to host refugees as a means of deterring new arrivals to Europe?”

      As arrivals from the sea have reached their highest point since 2016, Doctors Without Borders pediatric mental health teams in Lesbos have seen child referrals double in July compared to previous months. In July and August, 73 children were referred to our teams: three had attempted suicide and 17 had committed suicide. Ten of the 73 children were under the age of six, the youngest being just two.

      “More and more of these kids stop playing, see nightmares, are afraid to get out of their tent and start retiring from life,” says Kathryn Bruback, a mental health officer in Lesvos. “Some of them just stop talking. With overcrowding, violence and lack of security in the camp increasing, the situation for children is getting worse day by day. In order to prevent permanent damage, these children must leave the Moria camp immediately. “

      At the Doctors Without Borders pediatric clinic we have nearly 100 children with complex or chronic health problems, including young children with severe heart disease, diabetes, epilepsy and war injuries. They are all waiting to move to the mainland to access the specialized care they need.

      In the camp in Vathi, Samos, the situation is unbearable, according to Doctors Without Borders, where 5,000 people crowd into a place designed for 650. Most live in the “jungle”, an area outside the camp. The lack of protection and basic services raises the risk of people being subjected to new psychological trauma, with reports of incidents of harassment, sexual assault and other forms of violence increasing.

      The Greek government recently transferred nearly 1,500 vulnerable people from Lesvos. However, Doctors Without Borders believes that moving people to scenes in the mainland is not a safe or effective solution to the chronic overcrowding and its effects on human health. At least 2,500 people who are officially identified as vulnerable remain in Lesvos despite being entitled to move to a safe place for specialized care. This number does not include thousands of possibly others who have not yet been identified as vulnerable.

      Doctors Without Borders appeals to the Greek Government, the European Union and the Member States to assume their responsibilities and put an end to this unacceptable and devastating crisis, and in particular demand:

      Immediately remove children and vulnerable people from the islands and transport them to safe and appropriate accommodation in mainland Greece and / or other European countries.
      Immediately increase the number of medical staff in reception centers so that people can receive physical and mental health care.


  • Greece: Protest and fire break out at Lesbos migrant camp

    Police said no injuries were reported from Monday’s protest and that the fire believed to have been set deliberately at the Moria camp is still burning.


    #Lesbos #Lesvos #protestations #feu #Moria #asile #migrations #réfugiés #camp_de_réfugiés #Grèce #hotspots #résistance

    • Μόρια : « σκούπα » για πρόσφυγες που έχουν δύο « όχι » από την Υπηρεσία Ασύλου

      Commentaire reçu via la mailing-list de Migreurop :

      Une #opération_policière d’une grande envergure s’est déroulé hier matin à Moria, le hot-spot de Lesbos. Au moins 200 policiers ont passé au peigne fin le camp avec des contrôles d’identité systématiques afin de repérer les demandeurs d’asile déboutés dont les appels à la Commission de Recours ont été rejetés. L’opération a duré six heures et s’est conclu par l’interpellation d’une cinquantaine de personnes qui ont été amenés au commissariat de Lesbos pour contrôle d’identité. Ceux qui ont vu leur deuxième appel rejeté, seront conduits à un centre spécial pour les personnes en instance d’expulsion- une sorte de prison qui fonctionne au sein du camp de Moria-, pour être ensuite expulsés vers la Turquie.


    • Reçu via la mailing-list de Migreurop :

      Déchaînements de violences policières contre les réfugiés à Moria (Lesbos, Grèce) (English below)

      Plusieurs plaintes contre la police ont été déposées pour des mauvais traitements, des coups et des blessures sur des hommes déjà immobilisé voire menottés et pour des tortures pratiqués dans les commissariats. Au moins 11 parmi les 35 hommes arrêtés lors de la répression de la révolte à Moria la semaine dernière, ont déjà déposé ou sont sur le point de déposer de plaintes contre des policiers pour coups et blessures pouvant entraîner des lésions corporelles graves. Parmi eux, un Sénégalais âgé de 37 ans qui n’avait pas participé aux incidents avait reçu de coups de pied à la tête par un groupe de 4 policiers jusqu’à perdre connaissance et a dû être hospitalisé dans un état préoccupant.

      14 organisations humanitaires et défense de droit de l’homme ont faire part de leur très vive inquiétude et ont lancé un appel à la justice grecque pour qu’une enquête soit immédiatement ouverte afin de déterminer les responsables de cette violation flagrante des droits les plus élémentaires de migrants et de toute notion d’Etat de Droit.

      Au Parlement,19 députés de Syriza ont déposé une question adressée au Ministre de l’Immigration et à celui de l’Intérieur, en exigeant des explications sur cet « flagrant abus de pouvoir et sur les tortures pratiqués sur des hommes déjà arrêtés et menottés ». Ils veulent savoir qui a donné l’ordre pour ce type d’interventions policières et comment se fait-il que des hommes en civile ont été autorisés à participer à la répression brutale de la révolte.

      Un autre élément extrêmement préoccupant est le fait que les charges qui pèsent sur les 35 hommes arrêtés sont absolument identiques pour tous sans qu’aucune distinction personnalisée soit faite entre les supposés responsables de la révolte.

      Voir la vidéo qui montre des groupes de policiers et des civils qui s’acharnent contre des hommes immobilisés par terre où quiconque qui a le malheur de croiser le chemin de la police est violement brutalisé.

      Ci-dessous le communiqué de presse des 14 organisations (in English)

    • Greece: Authorities must investigate allegations of excessive use of force and ill-treatment of asylum-seekers in Lesvos

      Amnesty International calls on the Greek authorities to urgently investigate allegations that police used excessive force against asylum-seekers in the Moria camp near Mytilene during a protest on 18 July 2017 and ill-treated some of those who were arrested and detained in the Mytilene police station following the clashes that ensued. Testimonies the organisation collected from victims and witnesses about excessive use of force in the Moria camp are also supported by audio-visual material that was made public in the media in the days after the protest.


    • Report on Rights Violations and Resistance in Lesvos

      In the months since our last update on rights violations and resistance in Lesvos, our advocacy and campaigning resources were almost exclusively focused on the two trials for the Moria 35 and Moria 10 that took place in Chios in late April and early May 2018.

      The situation has predictably worsened in Lesvos. On the 17 April 2018, the Greek Council of State (the highest administrative court in Greece) ruled that geographic restrictions imposed by the Asylum Service for asylum seekers arriving to the Greek islands was illegal. However, within a week, new legislation was proposed, which further limits the rights of asylum seekers and continues the practice of containing asylum seekers to the Greek islands. Moria Camp is now at three times its capacity, holding approximately 7000 individuals. Between 500 and 1000 Kurdish asylum seekers are still living outside Moria in temporary shelter provided by Lesvos Solidarity – Pikpa, and Humans 4 Humanity, as they fear for their safety in Moria. Procedures are now so delayed that even individuals who are recognized as vulnerable, and whose cases should be prioritized under Article 51 of Greek Law 4375, are being scheduled for their interviews nearly a year after their arrival. This means that they are prohibited from leaving the island of Lesvos, and are denied freedom of movement during this entire time.

      In one case we are following, an eleven year old child has a serious, undiagnosed digestive condition that causes her constant pain and seizures. Because they have been unable to diagnose her illness, the hospital in Mytilene has referred her for testing and treatment in Athens. Even the Mytilene police department has recommended that geographic restrictions be temporarily lifted so that she can travel to Athens for further tests and treatment, but the Regional Asylum Office has denied this request without an appointment in the Athens hospital. Her family is now in a constant state of fear that given her critical condition, their daughter will be unable to receive emergency medical care when needed, given the lack of testing and treatment for her on the island. Already once, when she had seizures and attempted to get treatment at the hospital in Lesvos, she was not admitted because they do not have means to treat her.

      The Green Party published a report on 6 June 2018 exposing the inhumane conditions that systematically violate refugee rights in the Greek hotspots. On the 1 June 2018 the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT) also published preliminary observations of its visit to detention facilities in Greece from 10 to 19 April 2018, with damning findings.
      Treatment of Moria35 defendants highlights lack of procedural safeguards for detained asylum seekers in Lesvos

      In the last month and a half since the conclusion of the Moria 35 trial, we have been closely following the administrative process related to the detention and processing of the asylum claims of these individuals. It has become a near full time job of our Greek attorney based in Mytilene to ensure that Greek authorities comply by their own laws and respect the rights of these asylum seekers. Despite the fact that the UNHCR, the Ombudsman’s Office, and the Legal Centre have been closely monitoring their cases, there have been rampant violation of their rights at every step of their procedures. Unfortunately despite this close monitoring, two individuals were deported to Turkey on the morning of 13 June 2018. The violations we have observed in the individual cases of these 35 men highlight the lack of procedural safeguards to protect the rights of asylum seekers, particularly those who are being detained.

      Below we outline some of the observed violations of Moria 35 defendants’ rights as asylum seekers:

      Two individuals whose cases were rejected were denied the representation of a lawyer on appeal. The appeal of a rejected asylum claim is the one stage in the asylum procedure where asylum seekers have the right to a lawyer, under Article 44(3) of Law 4375. Although both requested the representation of a lawyer, the examination of their case on appeal occurred without them having been assigned an attorney.

      Another individual signed for voluntary departure, but then changed his mind and decided to continue his claim for international protection. He requested that his case be reopened. While that request was being processed, he was placed by police on the list to be deported on the 1 June 2018. It was only after advocacy from the Legal Centre that he was removed from the deportation list. He remains in detention, despite the lack of legal grounds to hold him there.

      Another individual was held for over a month in detention, after transfer to Lesvos following the trial in Chios. There was no recommendation for his continued detention either from the Regional Asylum Office, as required by Article 46(3) of Law 4375. After daily follow up from the Legal Centre, eventually the police admitted that they were holding him by mistake and he was released.

      Two additional individuals had their asylum cases rejected, but were unable to appeal because they were detained. With advocacy from UNHCR and Legal Centre lawyers, one of the individuals was able to lodge his appeal. However, he remains in detention, and it is not clear if the Appeals Committee will review his case on the merits or deny the appeal as untimely filed.

      The second individual was deported on the morning of 13 June 2018. This was despite the fact that for days he had been expressing to the police his desire to appeal the rejection of his asylum claim. Lawyers from HIAS and the Legal Centre also spoke with the Mytilene police department the day before he was deported and informed the police that they would be filing an appeal on his behalf. On the morning of 13 June 2018, he was deported to Turkey. This individual, a Guinean national, claims that he was a victim of torture, and will be subject to persecution if returned to his country. Regardless of whether his claim is credible, he has the right to appeal the rejection of his claim. Even though untimely, it is not the police who have the authority to accept or reject his appeal, but the Asylum Service. His right to appeal was clearly denied, and his deportation was illegal as police were aware that he would be appealing the denial of his claim and they proceeded with the deportation in any case.

      A second Moria 35 defendant was also deported on the 13 June 2018. His case had been rejected in the second instance. In 2017 this Ghanean national had been rejected and scheduled for deportation, but he lodged a subsequent application. It was the denial of this subsequent application that led to his deportation. While the Regional Asylum Service again scheduled for him to file a subsequent application on 14 June 2018, on 11 June 2018, we were informed that they would not accept a second subsequent application, since he had already submitted a subsequent application in 2017. However, he still had the option of appealing the denial of his claim in administrative court. Less than two days after being informed that he could not file a subsequent application, he was deported to Turkey. This individual has recently received original documents from Ghana that were not previously submitted to the Asylum Office. These documents corroborate his claim that he will be imprisoned 10-15 years if returned to Ghana. Prison conditions in Ghana according to human rights reports are “generally harsh and sometimes life threatening due to physical abuse, food shortages, overcrowding, and inadequate sanitary conditions and medical care” meaning he should be eligible for subsidiary protection, if not refugee status. Both individuals that were deported on the 13 June 2018 are also eligible for humanitarian protection as important witnesses to a serious crime that is still being investigated in Greece (the brutal police attack against the 35 arrestees on 18 July 2017). The swift move of the police to deport these individuals show that while procedures to grant protection and ensure that refugee rights are respected are constantly delayed, the State is able to mobilize and act swiftly to deny these same rights.

      The trampling of the rights of these individuals by the police has followed their brutally violent arrest, their unjust prosecution, and lengthy imprisonment in the case of the Moria 35. It is not clear if the police have targeted these individuals precisely because they were part of the Moria35 case, or if the violation of detained asylum seekers rights is systematic. What is clear is that there is a lack of sufficient transparency, oversight, and monitoring of detention and deportation practices.
      Legal Centre Successes

      Despite this hostile environment, we continue providing legal aid and individual consultation to all foreign nationals who seek our counsel. We conduct approximately 10 individual consultations daily, and through the assistance of our volunteer lawyers and interpreters, hundreds of individuals have been granted international protection in Greece, or have successfully had geographic restrictions lifted so they can legally travel to mainland Europe.

      We also continue to have success in assisting individuals in reuniting with family members in second European States under the Dublin III Regulation. In one case, a single young man from Haiti who is seriously ill was approved to be reunited with his family in France. While in Haiti, he had attempted to apply for a visa to join his parents and younger siblings in France, but was denied because he was over 18. France finally admitted, through our advocacy, that he was dependent on the care of his family, and that he should be able to join them in France. The fact that this individual was forced to take a lengthy, expensive, and dangerous journey to Europe through Turkey and the use of smugglers, only to be later admitted as an asylum seeker in France, shows that European immigration policies are broken.

      We will continue our work to assist and help navigate individuals through this broken system, and to monitor and expose the violations of these individuals’ rights when they occur.


    • Grèce : accusés d’avoir manifesté dans la violence, plus de 100 demandeurs d’asile ont finalement été acquittés

      Un tribunal de l’île de Lesbos en mer Égée a acquitté jeudi soir une centaine de demandeurs d’asile accusés d’avoir protesté contre leurs conditions de vie.

      Ils étaient plus d’une centaine sur le banc des accusés : un groupe de demandeurs d’asile, en majorité Afghans, a été acquitté jeudi 9 mai par un tribunal de l’île de Lesbos, en Grèce. Ils avaient été accusés d’avoir occupé en avril 2018 une place publique du centre de #Mytilène, le chef-lieu de l’île, pour protester contre leurs conditions de vie dans le camp surpeuplé et insalubre de Moria. Ils avaient également été accusés d’avoir fait usage de la force physique et de résistance.

      Des chefs d’accusation “dénués de tout fondement”, a commenté dans la presse locale l’une des avocates de la défense, Me Elli Kriona-Sarantou, en se félicitant du jugement du tribunal. "Nous n’avons rien fait. Nous avons été attaqués par des extrémistes. Nous sommes innocents", a, pour sa part, déclaré à l’AFP Hadisse Hosseini, l’une des personnes acquittées.

      Cet Afghan faisait partie des quelque 200 migrants rassemblés sur la place Sappho le 22 avril 2018 pour dénoncer leurs conditions de vie après la mort d’un autre Afghan souffrant de manque de soins de santé. Leur rassemblement avait été pris à partie par environ 150 militants d’extrême droite, qui leur avaient jeté des pierres et des fusées éclairantes. Des affrontements avaient suivi, entraînant l’intervention de la police.

      "Une situation qui nourrit l’impunité"

      Me Elli Kriona-Sarantou s’est dit préoccupée du fait que les militants d’extrême droite n’aient pas encore été jugés, "une situation qui nourrit l’impunité sur l’île". Seuls 26 agresseurs ont été identifiés par la police et doivent comparaître à une date qui n’a pas encore été fixée.

      Du même avis, Vassilis Kerasiotis, le directeur de la branche grecque de l’ONG HIAS, estime que cette décision de justice “n’appelle à aucune célébration”. L’organisme a défendu plus d’une trentaine des migrants accusés. “Le simple fait que 110 participants à une manifestation pacifique aient été jugés par un tribunal, après avoir subi une attaque raciste et un recours disproportionné à la violence par la police, est extrêmement préoccupant”, a-t-il commenté sur la page Facebook de HIAS.

      La Grèce accueille actuellement plus de 70 000 réfugiés dont près de 15 000 sur les îles de la mer Égée. Avec près de 9 000 arrivées depuis le début de l’année 2019, le nombre des réfugiés a de nouveau augmenté, après avoir chuté en 2017 et 2018.

      La situation est explosive en particulier sur les îles de Lesbos et de Samos où les camps sont surpeuplés. À Lesbos, le nombre des migrants et des demandeurs d’asile s’élève à environ 7 000 personnes alors qu’il n’y a que 4 200 places disponibles pour eux dans les camps et les logements de l’île.

      Dans le camp de Samos la situation est pire : 3 175 personnes y vivent actuellement contre une capacité de 648 personnes, selon les chiffres publiés jeudi par le ministère de la Protection du citoyen.


  • Thousands of refugees on Greek islands risk losing vital services as charities prepare to withdraw

    ’Who’s going to do child protection services on the island? Who’s going to do education? Who’s going to do the food?’

    #île #Grèce #asile #migrations #réfugiés #accueil #hotspots #financement #sous-financement #bénévolat #aide

  • Greece paying asylum seekers to reject appeals

    The Greek government is giving cash incentives for rejected asylum seekers on the islands to forgo their legal rights to appeal their cases.

    Some €1,000 and free plane tickets home are now part of a largely EU-financed package to send them packing as quickly as possible.

    “This is quite complicated and quite immoral,” a Greek lawyer working for Save the Children, an international NGO, told EUobserver on Tuesday (2 May).

    The move is part of a larger effort to return people to Turkey and free up administrative bottlenecks, but the plan has generated criticism from human rights defenders who say asylum seekers are being pushed into taking the money.

    People have five days to decide whether to take the cash, with reports emerging that even that short delay was not being respected by authorities. Previously, people were entitled to the assistance even if they appealed.

    #asile #migrations #réfugiés #money #argent #Grèce #expulsions #renvois #Turquie #hotspots #Chios, #Kos, #Leros, #Lesvos, and #Samos_islands #îles_samos #Lesbos #accord_UE-Turquie #recours #droit_d'asile #IOM #OIM #it_has_begun


    • Greece denies voluntary return incentives to asylum seekers appealing negative decisions

      The Greek authorities have adopted a policy which excludes asylum applicants in the so-called refugee hotspots who appeal a rejection from the possibility of participating in IOM’s #Assisted_Voluntary_Return_and_Reintegration (#AVRR) programme in a later stage.

      This policy forces applicants to choose between appealing a negative decision or benefiting from voluntary return programmes, which includes material support for reintegration in the country of origin. The Greek minister of asylum, Mr. Mouzalas, said that highlighting the financial bait by choosing for assisted return was needed to prevent bogus claimants from abusing the asylum system.

      Applicants have just five days to make this vital decision and incidents of applicants being forced to make a decision on the spot without being able to consult a lawyer are reported by leading civil society organisations in a statement calling for a reversal of the policy. The statement further argues that the rushed decision process results in a high risk of refoulement, jeopardizes the right to a fair asylum process and the right to appeal. The policy further contradicts IOM’s guidelines for the AVRR stating that voluntariness is a precondition.

      The fact that the AVRR used as incentive to give up the right to appeal is financed mainly by the European Commission and that German authorities seem prepared to copy the principle of the Greek policy as reported ECRE member ProAsyl, suggests that it could be a new tool to push for return at national and European level.


  • Last boat from #Lesvos. Asylum seeker stowaways try to reach the Greek mainland

    Every evening in Mytilene, capital of the Greek island of Lesvos, dozens of young Arab and African men gather at the base of a statue modelled, fittingly, after America’s Statue of Liberty. It overlooks the port, offering a good view of the entry gates, the parking lot, passengers emerging from taxis, and trucks loading shipping containers onto the large ferry that leaves for Athens at 8pm.

    #Lesbos #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Grèce #ferry #île

  • Geographical Perspectives on the European ‘Migration and Refugee Crisis’

    Guest Editors: Russell King and Michael Collyer, University of Sussex

    Narrating Europe’s Migration and Refugee ‘Crisis’

    Michael Collyer and Russell King

    Managing the Unmanageable? Understanding Europe’s Response to the Migration ‘Crisis’

    Heaven Crawley

    Guests, Asylum-Seekers, Refugees or Transit Migrants? Syrians in Turkey in ‘Purgatory’

    Jade Cemre Erciyes

    ‘They Won’t Let Us Come, They Won’t Let Us Stay, They Won’t Let Us Leave’. Liminality in the Aegean Borderscape: The Case of Irregular Migrants, Volunteers and Locals on Lesvos

    Ioanna Tsoni

    ‘My Uncle Cannot Say “No” if I Reach Libya’: Unpacking the Social Dynamics of Border-Crossing Among Eritreans Heading to Europe

    Milena Belloni

    ‘Leaving Afghanistan! Are You Sure?’ European Efforts to Deter Potential Migrants Through Information Campaigns

    Ceri Oeppen

    Slovenia: Post-Socialist and Neoliberal Landscapes in Response to the European Refugee Crisis

    Toby Martin Applegate

    Asylum in Germany: The Making of the ‘Crisis’ and the Role of Civil Society

    Sophie Hinger

    Meanings of Independence and Manifestations of Neoliberal Nationalism during the ‘Refugee Crisis’ in Central and Eastern Europe

    Aija Lulle

    Returning and Deporting Irregular Migrants: Not a Solution to the ‘Refugee Crisis’

    Daniela DeBono

    #revue #migrations #asile #réfugiés #crise #réfugiés_syriens #Turquie #Lesbos #Lesvos #Grèce #bénévolat #bénévoles #réfugiés_érythréens #campagne #réfugiés_afghans #Slovénie #Allemagne #renvoi #expulsion

  • The Lesvos hotspot: refugees stuck on the island

    The first thing that strikes you when you arrive in Lesvos is how close Turkey is. As the plane was landing at Mytilini airport that night, I could see the lights on the Turkish coast shimmering just a few kilometres away. It is tantalisingly close and it is only natural that people fleeing will want to cross.


    #Lesbos #Lesvos #hotspots #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Grèce

  • Lesbos

    According to UNHCR, approximately 850,000 refugees and migrants, including children, arrived in Greece by sea in 2015. Of these, just over 500,000 landed on Lesbos, a Greek island around eight nautical miles from the Turkish coast. Although at the centre of migration flows, Lesbos had nothing to offer the mainly Syrian, Afghan and Iraqi refugees, asylum seekers and migrants who arrived there. Once they reached Europe’s beaches, they were welcomed with a long trek across the island’s mountainous interior, followed by days and nights spent in crowded refugee camps, where not even a place in a tent was guaranteed and where basic amenities such as toilets and showers were lacking. But it was in those under-serviced and poorly managed camps that they had to stay, in order to obtain the required registration to allow them to travel legally through Greece and continue their journey of hope towards other European countries, such as Germany and Sweden.


    #photographie #Lesbos #Lesvos #Alessandro_Penso #asile #migrations #réfugiés
    cc @albertocampiphoto

  • orient xxi | Aux portes de l’Europe forteresse, des citoyens solidaires

    Sur l’île grecque de Lesbos où débarquent quotidiennement depuis des mois des centaines de réfugiés syriens, afghans, irakiens, pakistanais, somaliens, iraniens ou érythréens, l’Union européenne assure un service minimum. Face à l’inertie des politiques, les habitants de l’île rejoints par des volontaires de tous les pays sauvent l’honneur de l’Europe.

  • Ces héros anonymes de Lesbos qui tendent la main aux migrants

    Le petit bout de mer entre la Turquie et l’île grecque s’est transformé en cimetière pour les candidats à l’Europe. Mais des locaux ou des courageux leur viennent en aide, jour après jour.


    #solidarité #asile #migrations #Lesbos #Lesvos #Grèce #réfugiés

  • Kontrolle der türkischen Küste : Flüchtlinge weichen auf gefährlichere Routen aus

    Ein hellgrauer Umriss in der Dunkelheit. Mehr ist da zunächst nicht. Dann hören die Helfer am Strand ersten Jubel. Europa! Geschafft! Ein Schlauchboot mit rund 40 Flüchtlinge treibt auf die Küste von Lesbos zu.

    Lesbos - die griechische Insel ist an manchen Stellen nur rund zehn Kilometer von der türkischen Küste entfernt.

    Für die Helfer auf der griechischen Seite, darunter viele Rettungsschwimmer, ist es schwer, die Flüchtlingsboote in der Nacht rechtzeitig zu entdecken. Andererseits bietet die Dunkelheit Schutz. Schutz vor den Grenzwächtern.

    (pas de légende sur ce graphique... ARRGHHH ! Il faudrait donc trouver l’original, mais j’ai pas le temps là...)
    #Mer_Egée #asile #migrations #réfugiés #contrôles_frontaliers #Méditerranée #Lesbos #Lesvos #chiffres #statistiques
    cc @reka