• Monthly Report BVMN August 2020

    The #Border_Violence_Monitoring_Network (#BVMN) published 34 cases of illegal pushbacks during August, documenting the experience of 692 people whose rights were violated at the European Union’s external border. Volunteers in the field recorded a variety of cruel and abusive acts by officers, representing at least ten different national authorities. This report summarises the data and narrative testimony shared by people-on-the-move, highlighting the depth of violence being carried out in the service of European borders.

    As a network comprised of grassroots organisations active in Greece and the Western Balkans, this report was produced via a joint-effort between Are You Syrious, Mobile Info Team, No Name Kitchen, Rigardu, Josoor, InfoKolpa, Escuela con Alma, Centre for Peace Studies, Mare Liberum, Collective Aid and Fresh Response

    The report analyses among other things:

    - Czech presence in North Macedonian pushbacks
    - Unrest in the #Una-Sana Canton of Bosnia-Herzegovina
    - Continued Greek Maritime Pushbacks
    - Analyzing a summer of Italian pushbacks

    Special focus is given to the Greek context where in the Evros region, field partners collected several testimonies in August which referenced third-country-nationals facilitating pushbacks across the Evros/Meric River on behalf of Greek authorities. Three reports conducted by members of the Border Violence Monitoring Network allude to this practice and anecdotal evidence from the field reinforces these accounts.

    –-

    The Border Violence Monitoring Network (BVMN) published 34 cases of illegal pushbacks during August, documenting the experience of 692 people whose rights were violated at the European Union’s external border. Volunteers in the field recorded a variety of cruel and abusive acts by officers, representing at least ten different national authorities. This report summarises the data and narrative testimonies shared by peo-ple-on-the-move, highlighting the depth of violence being carried out in the service of European borders.Special focus is given to the Greek context where testimonies in the Evros allude to the trend of Greek au-thorities using third country nationals to facilitate pushbacks across the Evros/Meric River in the last two months. Reports collected by members of the Border Violence Monitoring Network allude to this practice and anecdotal evidence from the field reinforces these accounts. Further analysis covers the way in which Czech forces have been referenced in testimonies collected from push-backs from North Macedonia to Greece in the last month. Returns from Italy to Bosnia also continue to be legitimized by the Italian state and an analysis of recent reports from these returns is included, as well as an update written by volunteers on the ground in Trieste.In this report, BVMN also discusses several cases of pushbacks across the Aegean sea where the Greek au-thorities continue to use worrying methods to force transit ships back into Turkish waters via life raphs. New developments in both Bosnia’s Una-Sana Canton and Serbia’s #Vojvodina region are also noted, showing the situation on the ground and in the legal realm respectively, as it relates to pushbacks.

    https://www.borderviolence.eu/balkan-region-report-august-2020

    #rapport #push-backs #refoulements #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Italie #Grèce #Mer_Egée #Una #Sana #Bosnie #Bosnie_Herzégovine #Macédoine_du_Nord #frontières #Balkans #route_des_Balkans #Serbie

    ping @karine4 @isskein

    • Policajci iz Virovitice prijavljuju šefa: ‘Ilegalno tjera migrante, tuče se pijan, zataškava obiteljsko nasilje’

      ‘Da bi dobili veću plaću, njegovi miljenici tjeraju migrante iz BiH u Hrvatsku, kako bi ih zatim mogli deportirati’, tvrde naši sugovornici...

      Ovo je naš zapovjednik Andrej Hegediš, kaže jedan od četvorice pripadnika Interventne policije u Policijskoj upravi virovitičko-podravskoj, pokazujući na video-snimku Border Violence Monitoringa, nevladine organizacije koja se zalaže za zaštitu prava migranata. Na tajno snimljenom videu, vide se pripadnici hrvatske policije kako, prema tvrdnjama Border Violence Monitoringa, u šumi kraj Lohova, unutar teritorije Bosne i Hercegove, protjeruju skupinu migranata prema Bihaću.

      Ta snimka prikazana je na više televizija kao jedan od dokaza nehumanog postupanja hrvatske policije prema migrantima, zbog čega su na račun Zagreba stigla i ozbiljna upozorenje iz Bruxellesa. Hrvatski MUP odbacio je takve tvrdnje kao neutemeljene.
      Tvrdnje koje zvuče upravo nevjerojatno

      No, ono što su, vezano uz migrante, Telegramu ispričali pripadnici virovitičke Interventne policije koji su sudjelovali na osiguranju državne granice, zvuči upravo nevjerojatno: “Hrvatska je policija, tvrde naši sugovornici, u nekoliko navrata ulazila na teritorij susjedne BiH da bi odatle potjerala migrante u Hrvatsku, a onda ih deportirala!”

      Zašto bi to radili? Razlog je, kažu virovitički interventni policajci, više nego prozaičan: “boravak na terenu financijski je unosan. Na taj način mjesečno mogu zaraditi nekoliko tisuća kuna više, pa treba dokazati da se na granici nešto radi”, tvrde naši sugovornici. “Tako se migrante prvo iz BiH potjera u Hrvatsku, a zatim natrag. Deportiranje se, naravno, dokumentira video snimkama, kako bi se dokazala nužnost pojačanih policijskih ophodnju iz granicu”, dodaju.
      Iz MUP-a su potvrdili anonimnu predstavku

      Četvorica pripadnika interventne policije s kojima je Telegram razgovarao ovih dana, stoje iza predstavke upućene MUP-u u kojoj iznose brojne optužbe na račun Andreja Hegediša, zapovjednika virovitičke Interventne policije. Iz MUP-a su 3. rujna Telegramu potvrdili da su primili anonimnu predstavku.

      ”Potvrđujemo zaprimanje anonimnih podnesaka te Služba za unutarnju kontrolu u suradnji s policijskim službenicima Ravnateljstva policije i Policijske uprave, sukladno Zakonu o policiji i Pravilniku o načinu rada i postupanja po pritužbama te radu Povjerenstava za rad po pritužbama, provjerava njihovu utemeljenost”, stoji u odgovoru Telegramu.
      Šef policije se napio pa nasrnuo na kolegu

      ”Također vas obavještavamo kako je, nakon provjere navoda iz ranijeg podneska, načelnik Policijske uprave virovitičko-podravske pokrenuo disciplinski postupak pred Odjelom prvostupanjskog disciplinskog sudovanja Službe disciplinskog sudovanja u Osijeku zbog sumnje u počinjene teže povrede službene dužnosti iz čl. 96. stavak 1. točke 7. Zakona o policiji. Navedeni postupak je u tijeku”, napisali su iz MUP-a.

      Kad je riječ o potonjem, radi se o slučaju o kojem je prvi pisao Telegram i koji je do tada javnosti bio nepoznat. Naime, 20. prosinca prošle godine, na božićnom domjenku za čelne ljude Policijske uprave virovitičko-podravske, zapovjednik Interventne jedinice policije, Andrej Hegediš, fizički je nasrnuo na svog kolegu, načelnika Policijske postaje Pitomača, Renata Greguraša. Ali, načelnik virovitičke Policijske uprave, Siniša Knežević, koji je sve to vidio, disciplinski je postupak protiv Hegediša pokrenuo tek tri mjeseca nakon događaja.
      Odlasci u McDonald’s i zubaru u Zagreb

      Dvojica od četvorice Telegramovih sugovornika, bivših i aktivnih pripadnika Interventne policije, kažu da su također bili žrtve Hegediševih nasrtaja i pokušaja fizičkog napada. Neki od njih zbog toga su tražili premještaj. U predstavci koju je Telegram imao prilike vidjeti, navode se i druge pritužbe na njegov rad, a zbog čega je unutarnja kontrola MUP-a prošloga tjedna dva dana provela u Virovitici. No, kako neslužbeno doznajemo, njihov izvještaj ne bi trebao zabrinuti Hegediša. Štoviše, kaže jedan od naših izvora, sada se pokušava istražiti tko su autori anonimne predstavke.

      Jedna od optužbi na koju su se interventni policajci žalili odnosi se, kako tvrde, na zapovjednikovo korištenje službenog automobila u posve privatne svrhe, kao što je odlazak zubaru u Zagreb ili u restoran McDonald’s u Sisak. ”Ako postoji volja, lako je istražiti kako si je zapovjednik Interventne obračunavao prekovremeni rad i u vrijeme kada je već četiri sata bio u Mađarskoj, na privatnom putu prema zračnoj luci u Budimpešti. Treba samo pročešljati popis prekovremenih sati i usporediti to s vremenom kada je napustio granični prijelaz, pa će sve biti jasno. No, bojimo se da u policiji, zbog politike ‘ne talasaj’, za to nitko nema volje”, kažu sugovornici Telegrama iz interventne policije u Virovitici.

      ‘Natjerao me da ostavim ministra i vozim njega’

      Upravo je nevjerojatan podatak kojeg su nam iznijeli, kada je kažu, jedan njihov kolega, morao napustiti osiguranje štićene osobe i uputiti se u Slatinu, gdje zapovjednik Hegediš živi, da bi ga prevezao u bazu, u Viroviticu. Radilo se o osiguranju i obilasku kuće tadašnjeg potpredsjednika Vlade i ministra poljoprivrede, Tomislava Tolušića, kao i nekoliko zgrada u kojima bi znao odsjedati kada dolazi u Viroviticu. Hegediš se na to nije osvrtao, kažu Telegramovi sugovornici, već je policajcu naredio da prekine posao na osiguranju štićene osobe i preveze ga u Viroviticu.

      Detaljno su opisali i navodno samovolju svog zapovjednika Hegediša, zbog čega je nekoliko policajaca zatražilo premještaj. Nabrajaju imena svojih kolega koji su zbog mobinga napustili Interventnu policiju. ”Dok se njegovim poslušnicima i miljenicima sve tolerira, drugima se traži dlaka u jajetu i protiv njih se, i zbog najmanje sitnice, pokreću stegovni postupci”, kažu.
      ‘Miljenici mu pomagali u selidbi, usred radnog vremena’

      Opisuju slučaj, u kojem je nekoliko interventnih policajaca, u radnom vremenu, svom zapovjedniku pomagalo kada je iz jedne kuće selio u drugu. Akciju preseljenja, kažu, vodio je J. J.. No, naročito su ogorčeni na svog kolegu D. S., kojem je Hegediš, kažu, pomogao u zataškavanju obiteljskog nasilja i nedoličnog ponašanja, kada se na području između Kutjeva i Orahovice, u alkoholiziranom stanju, nasilnički ponašao prema supruzi, zaustavio automobil u šumi, ostavio je i otišao.

      Njegova supruga tada je, tvrde, zvala Operativno komunikacijski centar (OKC) u virovitičkoj Policijskoj upravi, prijavila slučaj obiteljskog nasilja, a postupak su proveli policajci iz Orahovice. No, slučaj je zataškan, tvrde sugovornici Telegrama, tako što je Hegediš zatražio da se u tom slučaju ne postupa. Sve, kažu, mogu potvrditi tada dežurni u OKC D. Č. i dežurni u jedinici u Virovitici M. V.. Imena svih osoba čije inicijale navodimo poznata su redakciji.

      ”Našem zapovjedniku unatoč svemu ništa se ne događa i bojimo se da ni dolazak unutarnje kontrole MUP-a neće ništa promijeniti”, kažu sugovornici Telegrama. Zatražili smo i komentar zapovjednika Hegediša, ali nije odgovorio na našu poruku. Kada je Telegram pisao o njegovu fizičkom nasrtaju na načelnika Policijske postaje u Pitomači, također ništa nije htio komentirati. Samo je rekao da kao policijski službenik ne smije javno istupati.

      https://www.telegram.hr/politika-kriminal/policajci-iz-virovitice-prijavljuju-sefa-ilegalno-tjera-migrante-tuce-se-pi

      #Andrej_Hegedis

      –—

      Commentaire reçu via la mailing-list Inicijativa Dobrodosli, mail du 29.09.2020

      Telegram, on the other hand, published the testimony of intervention police officers in Virovitica, who identified their chief #Andrej_Hegediš as one of the police officers on a BVMN video about an illegal expulsion published in December 2018. They also claimed that refugees and other migrants were expelled from BiH to Croatia and back. The Ministry of the Interior confirmed to Telegram that it had received an anonymous complaint, and Virovitica police officers accused Hegediš of other violations of police powers, including violence against police officers.

    • Bosnie-Herzégovine : les migrants pris en #otages du mille-feuille institutionnel

      La complexité du système institutionnel bosnien ne joue pas en faveur des réfugiés. Le 30 septembre dernier, les autorités du canton d’#Una-Sava et celles de la municipalité de #Bihać ont pris la décision unilatérale d’évacuer le #camp de #Bira, à la grande surprise du ministère de la Sécurité intérieure. Depuis, tout le monde se refile la patate chaude : que faire de ces centaines de personnes qui dorment tous les soirs dans les rues ?
      Le ton monte entre les représentants du canton d’Una-Sava et ceux de l’État central de Bosnie-Herzégovine. « Ils vont devoir utiliser les infrastructures qui sont à leur disposition, dans leur intérêt et dans celui des habitants du canton d’Una-Sana », a sèchement expliqué Selmo Cikotić, le ministre de la Sécurité intérieur, qui réagissait aux propos de Mustafa Ružnić, le président du canton d’Una-Sana, et à ceux du maire de Bihać, Šuhret Fazlić. Ces derniers avaient déclaré qu’ils ne permettraient pas le retour des migrants à Bira, le centre d’hébergement de Bihać vidé par les autorités cantonales le 30 septembre dernier. Suite à l’intervention de la police, certains exilés avaient été laissés libres de se diriger vers la frontière croate, d’autres avaient été conduits dans le camp de #Lipa, situé à une trentaine de kilomètres de Bihać, et ceux qui voulaient revenir vers Sarajevo avaient été autorisés à acheter des tickets de bus pour la capitale. Le camp de Lipa étant déjà plein, les migrants avaient ensuite été laissés dans les rues, sans aucun abris.

      Selon Selmo Cikotić, différentes mesures ont été prises pour fermer définitivement les camps de Bira à Bihać et de #Miral à #Velika_Kladuša. Le ministre peine donc à comprendre le refus des élus locaux de ne pas autoriser le retour temporaire des migrants. « Le plan du ministère de la Sécurité intérieure était en accord avec les institutions internationales et les différentes structures bosniennes », assure-t-il. « Nous avions tout organisé en accord avec la présidence, avec les instances internationales, les lois bosniennes, le conseil municipal de Velika Kladuša, les autorités cantonales et les représentants de l’Union européenne (UE). Le volte-face des autorités cantonales est donc pour moi très surprenant. Le camp de Bira devait de toute façon être fermé d’ici trois à quatre semaines, sans porter préjudice aux migrants ni aux habitants du canton. Je ne comprends pas pourquoi le Premier ministre du canton et le maire de Bihać ont précipité les choses. »

      « Cela fait trois ans que la municipalité est abandonnée à son sort », s’emporte Šuhret Fazlić. « C’est terminé, aucun migrant ne reviendra à Bira et nous appliquerons cette décision par tous les moyens à notre disposition. Je ne fais pas comme s’il n’y avait pas de migrants dans notre région, je dis juste qu’il n’y en aura plus à Bira. Nous avons assuré à ces gens un toit dans le camp de Lipa ». Selon le maire de Bihać, ce centre n’est pas encore plein, mais « la crise de l’accueil des migrants a mis à jour absolument tout ce qui ne fonctionne pas au sein de l’État bosnien ».L’évacuation du camp de Bira a en tout cas provoqué de nombreuses réactions. L’ambassade des États-Unis en Bosnie-Herzégovine, l’Organisation Internationale des Migrations (OIM), les Nations-Unies et Amnesty International sont unanimes : le camp de Bira ne peut être laissé vide, tant que des migrants dorment dans les rues. Dans un communiqué daté du 1er octobre, l’UE a jugé « inacceptable » la décision du canton et de la mairie de Bihać de transférer par la force les migrants vers le camp de Lipa. « L’UE a sans cesse répété que Lipa ne pouvait être qu’une solution temporaire, pendant la pandémie de coronavirus, et que ce centre ne remplissait pas les conditions nécessaires à l’accueil de réfugiés et de migrants, en particulier avec l’arrivée de l’hiver. Jamais Lipa n’a été agréé comme un centre d’accueil », précise le communiqué. Selon Šuhret Fazlić, l’UE menace de sanctions pénales la mairie de Bihać et les autorités du canton d’#Una-Sava.

      Un problème financier ?

      Reste que les désaccords persistent entre les autorités locales et le ministère de la Sécurité intérieure, alors que tous sont sous pression pour trouver rapidement une solution. « Il faut aménager le camp de Lipa », souhaite Šuhret Fazlić. « L’électricité vient d’un groupe électrogène, il faudrait 200 000 euros pour que le camp soit raccordé au réseau. L’eau est puisée dans une source, et provient en partie de notre réseau. Il faudrait 140 000 euros pour avoir assez d’eau, les canalisations existent déjà. Avec un peu moins de 350 000, on pourrait donc assurer les approvisionnements en eau et en électricité. Je ne vois pas pourquoi cela ne serait pas faisable. »

      La municipalité a donné cinq hectares de terre pour construire le camp et a pris en charge, avec l’aide du canton, une partie des frais de fonctionnement, ce que l’UE avait demandé. L’argent de l’État bosnien se fait en revanche attendre, car le Conseil des ministres n’a toujours pris aucune décision en ce qui concerne la fermeture du camp de Bira et l’ouverture de celui de Lipa. Deux millions et demi d’euros prévus pour l’accueil des migrants n’ont donc pas pu être débloqués. Selmo Cikotić estime ainsi que le problème n’est pas financier mais politique.

      Reste que pour l’instant, pas un euro n’a été débloqué pour le financement du camp de Lipa. « La présidence avait décidé de verser 2,5 millions d’euros, mais le Conseil des ministres n’a toujours pas pris la décision d’agréer Lipa comme un centre d’accueil, ni celle de fermer Bira. Je ne sais même pas s’il existe un consensus sur ces questions », s’agace le maire de Bihać.

      La société privée Bira, propriétaire du hangar où ont séjourné les migrants, n’a pas répondu aux questions de Radio Slobodna Evropa sur leur éventuel retour. « Nous ne sommes pas en capacité de vous répondre car le président du conseil d’administration n’est actuellement pas en état d’assurer ses obligations professionnelles. Pour toute précision, adressez-vous à l’OIM », a-t-elle répondu. Le principal actionnaire de Bira a également refusé de fournir des précisions sur la durée du contrat de location du hangar.


      https://www.courrierdesbalkans.fr/Bosnie-Herzegovine-migrants-otages-mille-feuille-institutionnel-b

      #Bihac #Velika_Kladusa

    • Croatian police accused of ’sickening’ assaults on migrants on Balkans trail

      Testimony from asylum seekers alleging brutal border pushbacks, including sexual abuse, adds to calls for EU to investigate

      People on the Balkans migrant trail have allegedly been whipped, robbed and, in one case, sexually abused by members of the Croatian police.

      The Danish Refugee Council (DRC) has documented a series of brutal pushbacks on the Bosnia-Croatian border involving dozens of asylum seekers between 12 and 16 October.

      The Guardian has obtained photographs and medical reports that support the accounts, described by aid workers as “sickening” and “shocking”.

      “The testimonies collected from victims of pushbacks are horrifying,’’ said Charlotte Slente, DRC secretary general. “More than 75 persons in one week have all independently reported inhumane treatment, savage beatings and even sexual abuse.’’

      According to migrants’ accounts, the pushbacks occurred in Croatian territory over the border from Velika Kladuša in Bosnia, close to Šiljkovača – a tented forest settlement of around 700 refugees and migrants.

      “All of the persons interviewed by DRC bore visible injuries from beatings (bruises and cuts), as a result of alleged Croatian police violence,” reads the DRC report. “According to the statements provided by interviewed victims (with visible evidence of their injuries), pushbacks included brutal and extremely violent behaviour, degrading treatment, and theft and destruction of personal belongings.” One of the testimonies includes a report of serious sexual abuse.

      On 12 October, five Afghans, including two minors, crossed the Croatian border near the #Šturlić settlement. On the same day, near Novo Selo, an uniformed police officer stopped them and then called two more officers. One of the migrants ran, and the other four were detained at a police station. Two days later they were taken to court, where they say they were to “appear as witnesses in the case launched against the fifth member of the group – the one who escaped”, who had been accused of violent behaviour towards police.

      The asylum seekers told the DRC that the original officers then took them “to some unknown location, where they were put in a van in the charge of 10 armed people, dressed in black and with full face balaclavas, army boots and with flashlights on their foreheads”. Their money was taken, their belongings torched and they were ordered to strip to their underwear. The migrants allege that they were forced to lie face down on the ground.

      “One man in black was standing on the victim’s hands, preventing any movements,” reads the report. “Legs were also restrained. Once the person was hampered, the beating started. They were punched, kicked, whipped and beaten.” Medical reports confirm that migrants’ injuries are consistent with the use of a whip.

      One migrant, MK, says at this point he was sexually assaulted by a man using a branch.

      Mustafa Hodžić, a doctor in Velika Kladuša, examined the man. “The patient had wounds all over the back of his body, on his back and legs. I can confirm the signs of clear sexual violence … I have never seen anything like it. Even if it isn’t the first time as a doctor [that] I have seen signs of sexual violence on migrants, which, according the asylum seekers’ accounts, were perpetrated on Croatian territory by Croatian officials dressed in black uniforms.”

      One Pakistani migrant told of being intercepted with two others near Croatia’s Blata railway station. The police allegedly ordered them to strip naked before loading them into a van and taking them to a sort of garage, where five other migrants were waiting to be sent back to Bosnia. Awaiting their arrival were men dressed in black.

      “They started to beat us with batons, and the third one took his mobile phone and took a selfie with us without clothes,” the Pakistani man said. “The first four of us were on the ground, and we lay next to each other, naked and beaten, and the other four were ordered to lie on us, like when trees are stacked, so we lay motionless for 20 minutes. The last one was a minor. He was from the other group; I saw when the police officer ask him where he was from. He tried to say that he is a minor. He was beaten a lot, and when it was his turn to take off his clothes, he was beaten even more.”

      One man added: “A minor from the second group fainted after many blows. His friends took him in their arms, and one of the police officers ordered them to lay him down on the ground. Then they started hitting them with batons. Before the deportation, police told us: ‘We don’t care where you are from or if you will return to Bosnia or to your country, but you will not go to Croatia. Now you have all your arms and legs because we were careful how we hit you. Next time it will be worse’.’’

      Small groups of asylum seekers attempt to cross from Bosnia into Croatia nightly on the migrant trail into western Europe. The EU’s longest internal border, it is patrolled by police armed with truncheons, pistols and night vision goggles. Aid workers, doctors, border guards and UN officials have documented systematic abuse and violence perpetrated along the border stretch for several years.

      Last May, the Guardian documented a case of more than 30 migrants who were allegedly robbed and had their heads spray painted with red crosses by Croatian officers.

      The UNHCR has asked the Croatian government to set up an independent assessment of the border situation.

      The details of the latest pushback are in a report that the DRC has shared with the European commission, which has yet to investigate.

      ‘’The Croatian government and the European commission must act to put a stop to the systematic use of violence,” said Slente. ‘’Treating human beings like this, inflicting severe pain and causing unnecessary suffering, irrespective of their migratory status, cannot and should not be accepted by any European country, or by any EU institution. There is an urgent need to ensure that independent border monitoring mechanisms are in place to prevent these abuses.”

      Croatian police and the ministry of the interior have not responded to requests for comment.

      In June, the Guardian revealed EU officials were accused of an “outrageous cover-up” for withholding evidence of the Croatian government’s failure to supervise border forces. Internal emails showed Brussels officials were fearful of full disclosure of Croatia’s lack of commitment to a monitoring mechanism that EU ministers had agreed to fund.

      In January, a commission official warned a colleague that Croatia’s failure to use money earmarked two years ago for border police “will for sure be seen as a scandal”.

      The recent accusations come as the commission presented its final report on the grant, in which Croatia asserted that the co-financing project had “helped make the implementation of activities of border surveillance more conscientious and of higher quality, with emphasis on the respect of migrants’ rights guaranteed under international, European and national legislation”.

      Regarding allegations of abuse, Croatian authorities stated: “Every single [piece of] information and every single complaint was inspected in the process called internal control. We did not establish that the police officers committed any criminal or disciplinary offence in any of the cases.”

      Clare Daly, an Irish MEP, is among those who have raised concerns in Brussels. “The blood of these people, so horrifically mistreated on the Croatian border, is on the hands of the European commission. They have enabled this violation of fundamental rights by ignoring the facts presented to them by NGOs and MEPs that all was not well. They turned a blind eye time and again, and now these horrible events have occurred again, even worse than before.”

      She added: “The last time such behaviour occurred, the commission rewarded Croatia with an extra grant even bigger than the first one, and said they were happy with how the funds had been spent … when is someone going to be held accountable for these crimes against humanity?”

      https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2020/oct/21/croatian-police-accused-of-sickening-assaults-on-migrants-on-balkans-tr

      –----

      See the report of Border Violence Monitoring Network (October 21) with photos and videos:
      Croatian authorities leading choreographed violence near #Cetingrad

      In the last fourteen days, BVMN-member No Name Kitchen have collected testimonies alluding to a spike in pushback violence in the Cetingrad area of the Croatian border with Bosnia-Herzegovina. The veracity of these testimonies is further supplemented with reports from local people and media outlets. The characteristics of this trend in violence have been complex and coordinated assaults by Croatian police, consisting of repetitive baton strikes, lashing and kicking. These tactics leave an indelible mark on returned transit groups, visible in the extensive bruising and lacerations across the legs, torso and upper body of people subject to such violence. First hand testimony of recent pushbacks are examined here, alongside pictures and videos from the HR/BiH border which reveal the deterioration in border violence seen in the last fortnight.


      https://www.borderviolence.eu/15983-2

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C6JnnUfpulA&feature=emb_logo

      #Novo_Selo #Sturlic

  • Kosovo-Serbie : le « lac Trump » et les nouveaux cultes de la personnalité -
    C’était une boutade de l’émissaire américain Richard Grenell, mais elle a (presque) fini par se concrétiser. Comme les dirigeants serbes et kosovars réunis à Washington ne parvenaient pas à s’entendre sur le nom du lac de Ujman/Gazivode, situé entre les deux pays, ce dernier avait proposé de le renommer « #LakeTrump ». Une initiative aussitôt approuvée par les Serbes du Kosovo. Tour d’horizon des nouveaux cultes de la personnalité dans les Balkans.

    https://www.courrierdesbalkans.fr/Kosovo-Serbie-le-lac-Trump-et-les-nouveaux-cultes-de-la-personnal


    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/Eir6VecX0Ag4G0e?format=jpg&name=900x900

    https://youtu.be/TkqlcByLtqc

    #toponimie #LacTrump #kosovo #serbie

  • The Frontier Within: The European Border Regime in the Balkans

    In the summer of 2015, the migratory route across the Balkans »entered into the European spotlight, and indeed onto the screen of the global public« (Kasparek 2016: 2), triggering different interpretations and responses. Contrary to the widespread framing of the mass movement of people seeking refuge in Europe as ›crisis‹ and ›emergency‹ of unseen proportions, we opt for the perspective of »the long Summer of Migration« (Kasparek/Speer 2015) and an interpretation that regards it as »a historic and monumental year of migration for Europe precisely because disobedient mass mobilities have disrupted the European regime of border control« (Stierl/Heller/de Genova 2016: 23). In reaction to the disobedient mass mobilities of people, a state-tolerated and even state-organized transit of people, a »formalized corridor« (Beznec/Speer/Stojić Mitrović 2016), was gradually established. To avoid the concentration of unwanted migrants on their territory, countries along the route—sometimes in consultation with their neighboring countries and EU member states, sometimes simply by creating facts—strived to regain control over the movements by channeling and isolating them by means of the corridor (see e.g. Hameršak/Pleše 2018; Speer 2017; Tošić 2017). »Migrants didn’t travel the route any more: they were hurriedly channeled along, no longer having the power to either determine their own movement or their own speed« (Kasparek 2016). The corridor, at the same time, facilitated and tamed the movement of people. In comparison to the situation in Serbia, where migrants were loosely directed to follow the path of the corridor (see e.g. Beznec/Speer/Stojić Mitrović 2016; Greenberg/Spasić 2017; Kasparek 2016: 6), migrants in other states like North Macedonia, Croatia, and Slovenia were literally in the corridor’s power, i.e. forced to follow the corridor (see Hameršak/Pleše 2018; Beznec/Speer/Stojić Mitrović 2016; Chudoska Blazhevska/Flores Juberías 2016: 231–232; Kogovšek Šalamon 2016: 44–47; Petrović 2018). The corridor was operative in different and constantly changing modalities until March 2016. Since then, migration through the Balkan region still takes place, with migrants struggling on a daily basis with the diverse means of tightened border controls that all states along the Balkan route have been practicing since.

    This movements issue wants to look back on these events in an attempt to analytically make sense of them and to reflect on the historical rupture of the months of 2015 and 2016. At the same time, it tries to analyze the ongoing developments of bordering policies and the struggles of migration. It assembles a broad range of articles reaching from analytical or research based papers shedding light on various regional settings and topics, such as the massive involvement of humanitarian actors or the role of camp infrastructures, to more activist-led articles reflecting on the different phases and settings of pro-migrant struggles and transnational solidarity practices. In an attempt to better understand the post-2015 border regime, the issue furthermore presents analyses of varying political technologies of bordering that evolved along the route in response to the mass mobilities of 2015/2016. It especially focuses on the excessive use of different dimensions of violence that seem to characterize the new modalities of the border regime, such as the omnipresent practice of push-backs. Moreover, the articles shed light on the ongoing struggles of transit mobility and (transnational) solidarity that are specifically shaped by the more than eventful history of the region molded both by centuries of violent interventions and a history of connectivity.

    Our transnational editorial group came together in the course of a summer school on the border regime in the Balkans held in Belgrade, Serbia, in 2018. It was organized by the Network for Critical Migration and Border Regime Studies (kritnet), University of Göttingen, Department of Cultural Anthropology/European Ethnology (Germany), the Research Centre of the Academy of Sciences and Arts (Slovenia), the Institute of Ethnology and Folklore Research (Croatia), and the Institute of Ethnography SASA (Serbia). The summer school assembled engaged academics from all over the region that were involved, in one form or another, in migration struggles along the route in recent years.1 The few days of exchange proved to be an exciting and fruitful gathering of critical migration and border regime scholars and activists from different regional and disciplinary backgrounds of the wider Balkans. Therefore, we decided to produce this movements issue by inviting scholars and activists from the region or with a deep knowledge on, and experience with, regional histories and politics in order to share their analyses of the Balkan route, the formalized corridor, and the developments thereafter. These developments have left a deep imprint on the societies and regional politics of migration, but they are very rarely taken into consideration and studied in the West as the centuries long entanglements that connect the Balkan with the rest of Europe.

    In this editorial, we will outline the transnational mobility practices in the Balkans in a historical perspective that includes the framework of EU-Balkan relations. With this exercise we try to historize the events of 2015 which are portrayed in many academic as well as public accounts as ›unexpected‹ and ›new‹. We also intend to write against the emergency and escalation narrative underlying most public discourses on the Balkans and migration routes today, which is often embedded in old cultural stereotypes about the region. We, furthermore, write against the emergency narrative because it erodes the agency of migration that has not only connected the region with the rest of the globe but is also constantly reinventing new paths for reaching better lives. Not only the history of mobilities, migrations, and flight connecting the region with the rest of Europe and the Middle East can be traced back into the past, but also the history of political interventions and attempts to control these migrations and mobilities by western European states. Especially the EU accession processes produce contexts that made it possible to gradually integrate the (Western) Balkan states into the rationale of EU migration management, thus, setting the ground for today’s border and migration regime. However, as we will show in the following sections, we also argue against simplified understandings of the EU border regime that regard its externalization policy as an imperial top-down act. Rather, with a postcolonial perspective that calls for decentering western knowledge, we will also shed light on the agency of the national governments of the region and their own national(ist) agendas.
    The Formalized Corridor

    As outlined above, the formalized corridor of 2015 reached from Greece to Northern and Central Europe, leading across the states established in the 1990s during the violent breakdown of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and, today, are additionally stratified vis-à-vis the EU. Slovenia and Croatia are EU member states, while the others are still in the accession process. The candidate states Serbia, North Macedonia and Montenegro have opened the negotiation process. Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo—still not recognized as a sovereign state by Serbia and some EU member states—have the status of potential candidates. However, in 2015 and 2016, the states along the corridor efficiently collaborated for months on a daily basis, while, at the same time, fostering separate, sometimes conflicting, migration politics. Slovenia, for example, raised a razor-wire fence along the border to Croatia, while Croatia externalized its border to Serbia with a bilateral agreement (Protokol) in 2015 which stated that the »Croatian Party« may send a »train composition with its crew to the railway station in Šid [in Serbia], with a sufficient number of police officers of the Republic of Croatia as escort« (Article 3 Paragraph 2).

    Despite ruptures and disputes, states nevertheless organized transit in the form of corridor consisting of trains, buses, and masses of walking people that were guarded and directed by the police who forced people on the move to follow the corridor’s direction and speed. The way the movements were speedily channeled in some countries came at the cost of depriving people of their liberty and freedom of movement, which calls for an understanding of the corridor as a specific form of detention: a mobile detention, ineligible to national or EU legislation (see Hameršak/Pleše 2018; Kogovšek Šalamon 2016: 44–47). In the context of the corridor, camps became convergence points for the heterogeneous pathways of movements. Nevertheless, having in mind both the proclaimed humanitarian purpose of the corridor, and the monumental numbers of people to whom the corridor enabled and facilitated movement, the corridor can be designated as an unprecedented formation in recent EU history. In other words: »The corridor – with all its restrictions – remains a historical event initiated by the movement of people, which enabled thousands to reach central Europe in a relatively quick and safe manner. […] But at the same time it remained inscribed within a violent migration management system« (Santer/Wriedt 2017: 148).

    For some time, a broad consensus can be observed within migration and border studies and among policy makers that understands migration control as much more than simply protecting a concrete borderline. Instead, concepts such as migration management (Oelgemoller 2017; Geiger/Pécoud 2010) and border externalization (as specifically spelled out in the EU document Global Approach to Migration of 2005) have become increasingly important. In a spatial sense, what many of them have in common is, first, that they assume an involvement of neighboring states to govern migration in line with EU migration policies. Second, it is often stated that this leads to the creation of different zones encircling the European Union (Andreas/Snyder 2000). Maribel Casas-Cortes and Sebastian Cobarrubias, for instance, speak of four such zones: the first zone is »formed by EU member states, capable of fulfilling Schengen standards«, the second zone »consists of transit countries« (Casas-Cortes/Cobarrubias 2019), the third zone is characterized by countries such as Turkey, which are depicted by emigration as well as transit, and the fourth zone are countries of origin. While Casas-Cortes and Cobarrubias rightly criticize the static and eurocentric perspective of such conceptualizations, they nevertheless point to the unique nature of the formalized corridor because it crisscrossed the above mentioned zones of mobility control in an unprecedented way.

    Furthermore, the corridor through the Balkans can be conceived as a special type of transnational, internalized border. The internalized European borders manifest themselves to a great extent in a punctiform (see Rahola 2011: 96–97). They are not only activated in formal settings of border-crossings, police stations, or detention centers both at state borders and deep within state territories, but also in informal settings of hospitals, hostels, in the streets, or when someone’s legal status is taken as a basis for denying access to rights and services (i.e. to obtain medical aid, accommodation, ride) (Guild 2001; Stojić Mitrović/Meh 2015). With the Balkan corridor, this punctiform of movement control was, for a short period, fused into a linear one (Hameršak/Pleše 2018).

    The rules of the corridor and its pathways were established by formal and informal agreements between the police and other state authorities, and the corridor itself was facilitated by governmental, humanitarian, and other institutions and agencies. Cooperation between the countries along the route was fostered by representatives of EU institutions and EU member states. It would be too simple, though, to describe their involvement of the countries along the route as merely reactive, as an almost mechanical response to EU and broader global policies. Some countries, in particular Serbia, regarded the increasing numbers of migrants entering their territory during the year 2015 as a window of opportunity for showing their ›good face‹ to the European Union by adopting ›European values‹ and, by doing so, for enhancing their accession process to the European Union (Beznec/Speer/Stojić Mitrović 2016; Greenberg/Spasić 2017). As Tošić points out, »this image was very convenient for Serbian politicians in framing their country as ›truly European‹, since it was keeping its borders open unlike some EU states (such as Hungary)« (2017: 160). Other states along the corridor also played by their own rules from time to time: Croatia, for example, contrary to the Eurodac Regulation (Regulation EU No 603/2013), avoided sharing registration data on people in transit and, thus, hampered the Dublin system that is dependent on Eurodac registration. Irregular bureaucracies and nonrecording, as Katerina Rozakou (2017) calls such practices in her analysis of bordering practices in the Greek context, became a place of dispute, negotiations, and frustrations, but also a clear sign of the complex relationships and different responses to migration within the European Union migration management politics itself.

    Within EU-member states, however, the longer the corridor lasted, and the more people passed through it, the stronger the ›Hungarian position‹ became. Finally, Austria became the driving force behind a process of gradually closing the corridor, which began in November 2015 and was fully implemented in March 2016. In parallel, Angela Merkel and the European Commission preferred another strategy that cut access to the formalized corridor and that was achieved by adopting a treaty with Turkey known as the »EU-Turkey deal« signed on 18 March 2016 (see Speer 2017: 49–68; Weber 2017: 30–40).

    The humanitarian aspect for the people on the move who were supposed to reach a safe place through the corridor was the guiding principle of public discourses in most of the countries along the corridor. In Serbia, »Prime Minister Aleksandar Vučić officially welcomed refugees, spoke of tolerance, and compared the experience of refugees fleeing war-torn countries to those of refugees during the wars of Yugoslav Succession« (Greenberg/Spasić 2017: 315). Similar narratives could also be observed in other countries along the corridor, at least for some period of time (see, for Slovenia, Sardelić 2017: 11; for Croatia, Jakešević 2017: 184; Bužinkić 2018: 153–154). Of course, critical readings could easily detect the discriminatory, dehumanizing, securitarizing, and criminalizing acts, practices, tropes, and aspects in many of these superficially caring narratives. The profiling or selection of people, ad hoc detentions, and militarization—which were integral parts of the corridor—were, at the time, only denounced by a few NGOs and independent activists. They were mostly ignored, or only temporarily acknowledged, by the media and, consequently, by the general public.

    Before May 2015, ›irregular‹ migration was not framed by a discourse of ›crisis‹ in the countries along the route, rather, the discourse was led by a focus on ›separate incidents‹ or ›situations‹. The discursive framing of ›crisis‹ and ›emergency‹, accompanied by reports of UN agencies about ›unprecedented refugee flows in history‹, has been globally adopted both by policy makers and the wider public. »In the wake of the Summer of Migration, all involved states along the Balkan route were quick to stage the events as an ›emergency‹ (Calhoun 2004) and, in best humanitarian fashion, as a major humanitarian ›crisis‹, thus legitimizing a ›politics of exception‹« (Hess/Kasparek 2017: 66). Following the logic that extraordinary situations call for, and justify, the use of extraordinary measures, the emergency framework, through the construction of existential threats, resulted, on the one hand, in a loosely controlled allocation of resources, and, on the other hand, in silencing many critical interpretations, thus allowing various ›risk management activities‹ to happen on the edge of the law (Campesi 2014). For the states along the route, the crisis label especially meant a rapid infusion of money and other resources for establishing infrastructures for the urgent reception of people on the move, mainly deriving from EU funds. Politically and practically, these humanitarian-control activities also fastened the operational inclusion of non-EU countries into the European border regime.

    As Sabine Hess and Bernd Kasparek have pointed out, the politics of proclaiming a ›crisis‹ is at the heart of re-stabilizing the European border regime, »making it possible to systematically undermine and lever the standards of international and European law without serious challenges to date« (Hess/Kasparek 2017: 66). The authors:

    »have observed carefully designed policy elements, which can be labelled as anti-litigation devices. The design of the Hungarian transit zones is a striking case in point. They are an elementary part of the border fence towards Serbia and allow for the fiction that the border has not been closed for those seeking international protection, but rather that their admission numbers are merely limited due to administrative reasons: each of the two transit zones allows for 14 asylum seekers to enter Hungary every day« (Hess/Kasparek 2017: 66; on the administrative rationale in Slovenia see e.g. Gombač 2016: 79–81).

    The establishment of transit zones was accompanied by a series of legislative tightenings, passed under a proclaimed ›crisis situation caused by mass immigration‹, which, from a legal point of view, lasts until today. Two aspects are worth mentioning in particular: First, the mandatory deportation of all unwanted migrants that were detected on Hungarian territory to the other side of the fence, without any possibility to claim for asylum or even to lodge any appeal against the return. Second, the automatic rejection of all asylum applications as inadmissible, even of those who managed to enter the transit zones, because Serbia had been declared a safe third country (Nagy/Pál 2018). This led to a completely securitized border regime in Hungary, which might become a ›role model‹, not only for the countries in the region but also for the European border regime as a whole (ECtHR – Ilias and Ahmed v. Hungary Application No. 47287/15).
    The Long Genealogy of the Balkan Route and its Governance

    The history of the Balkan region is a multiply layered history of transborder mobilities, migration, and flight reaching back as far as the times of the Habsburg and Ottoman empires connecting the region with the East and Western Europe in many ways. Central transportation and communication infrastructures partially also used by today’s migratory projects had already been established at the heydays of Western imperialism, as the Orient Express, the luxury train service connecting Paris with Istanbul (1883), or the Berlin-Baghdad railway (built between 1903 and 1940) indicate. During World War II, a different and reversed refugee route existed, which brought European refugees not just to Turkey but even further to refugee camps in Syria, Egypt, and Palestine and was operated by the Middle East Relief and Refugee Administration (MERRA).

    The Yugoslav highway, the Highway of Brotherhood and Unity (Autoput bratstva i jedinstva) often simply referred to as the ›autoput‹ and built in phases after the 1950s, came to stretch over more than 1,000 km from the Austrian to the Greek borders and was one of the central infrastructures enabling transnational mobilities, life projects, and exile. In the 1960s, direct trains departing from Istanbul and Athens carried thousands of prospective labor migrants to foreign places in Germany and Austria in the context of the fordist labor migration regime of the two countries. At the end of that decade, Germany signed a labor recruitment agreement with Yugoslavia, fostering and formalizing decades long labor migrations from Croatia, Serbia, and other countries to Germany (Gatrell 2019, see e.g. Lukić Krstanović 2019: 54–55).

    The wars in the 1990s that accompanied the dissolution of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, and the consequent establishment of several new nation states, created the first large refugee movement after the Second World War within Europe and was followed by increasing numbers of people fleeing Albania after the fall of its self-isolationist regime and the (civil) wars in the Middle East, Iraq, Turkey, Iran, and Afghanistan since the mid-1990s. As the migratory route did not go north through the Balkan Peninsula, but mainly proceeded to Italy at the time, the label Balkan route was mostly used as a name for a drugs and arms smuggling route well known in the West. Although there was migration within and to Europe, the Balkan migratory route, with the exception of refugee movements from ex-Yugoslavia, was yet predominantly invisible to the broader European public.

    Sparse ethnographic insights from the beginning of the 2000s point this out. Academic papers on migrant crossings from Turkey to the island of Lesbos mention as follows: »When the transport service began in the late 1980s it was very small and personal; then, in the middle of the 1990s, the Kurds began to show up – and now people arrive from just about everywhere« (Tsianos/Hess/Karakayali 2009: 3; see Tsianos/Karakayali 2010: 379). A document of the Council of the European Union from 1997 formulates this as following:

    »This migration appears to be routed essentially either through Turkey, and hence through Greece and Italy, or via the ›Balkans route‹, with the final countries of destination being in particular Germany, the Netherlands and Sweden. Several suggestions were put forward for dealing with this worrying problem, including the strengthening of checks at external borders, the stepping up of the campaign against illegal immigration networks, and pre-frontier assistance and training assignments in airports and ports in certain transit third countries, in full cooperation with the authorities in those countries« (ibid. quoted in Hess/Kasparek 2020).

    During this time, the EU migration management policies defined two main objectives: to prevent similar arrivals in the future, and to initiate a system of control over migration movements toward the EU that would be established outside the territories of the EU member states. This would later be formalized, first in the 2002 EU Action Plan on Illegal Immigration (see Hayes/Vermeulen 2012: 13–14) and later re-confirmed in the Global Approach to Migration (2005) framework concerning the cooperation of the EU with third states (Hess/Kasparek 2020). In this process, the so-called migratory routes-approach and accompanying strategies of controlling, containing, and taming the movement »through epistemology of the route« (Hess/Kasparek 2020) became a main rationale of the European border control regime. Thus, one can resume that the route was not only produced by movements of people but also by the logic, legislation, investment etc. of EU migration governance. Consequently, the clandestine pathways across the Balkans to Central and Western Europe were frequently addressed by security bodies and services of the EU (see e.g. Frontex 2011; Frontex 2014), resulting in the conceptual and practical production of the Balkan as an external border zone of the EU.

    Parallel to the creation of ›Schengenland‹, the birth of the ›Area of Freedom, Security and Justice‹ inter alia as an inner-EU-free-mobility-zone and EU-based European border and migration regime in the late 1990s, the EU created the Western Balkans as an imaginary political entity, an object of its neighborhood and enlargement policy, which lies just outside the EU with a potential ›European future‹. For the purpose of the Stabilization and Association Process (SAP) initiated in 1999, the term Western Balkan was launched in the EU political context in order to include, at that moment, ›ex-Yugoslav states minus Slovenia plus Albania‹ and to presumably avoid potential politically sensitive notions. The Western Balkans as a concept represents a combination of a political compromise and colonial imagery (see Petrović 2012: 21–36). Its aim was to stabilize the region through a radical redefinition that would restrain from ethno-national toponyms and to establish a free-trade area and growing partnership with the EU. The SAP set out common political and economic goals for the Western Balkan as a region and conducted political and economic progress evaluations ›on a countries’ own merits‹. The Thessaloniki Summit in 2003 strengthened the main objectives of the SAP and formally took over elements of the accession process—institutional domains and regulations that were to be harmonized with those existing in the EU. Harmonization is a wide concept, and it basically means adopting institutional measures following specific demands of the EU. It is a highly hierarchized process in which states asked to ›harmonize‹ do not have a say in things but have to conform to the measures set forth by the EU. As such, the adoption of the EU migration and border regime became a central part of the ongoing EU-accession process that emerged as the main platform and governmental technology of the early externalization and integration of transit and source countries into the EU border regime. This was the context of early bilateral and multilateral cooperation on this topic (concerning involved states, see Lipovec Čebron 2003; Stojić Mitrović 2014; Župarić-Iljić 2013; Bojadžijev 2007).

    The decisive inclusion of the Western Balkan states in the EU design of border control happened at the Thessaloniki European Summit in 2003, where concrete provisions concerning border management, security, and combating illegal migration were set according to European standards. These provisions have not been directly displayed, but were concealed as part of the package of institutional transformations that respective states had to conduct. The states were promised to become members of the EU if the conditions were met. In order to fulfill this goal, prospective EU member states had to maintain good mutual relations, build statehoods based on ›the rule of law‹, and, after a positive evaluation by the EU, begin with the implementation of concrete legislative and institutional changes on their territories (Stojić Mitrović/Vilenica 2019). The control of unwanted movements toward the EU was a priority of the EU accession process of the Western Balkan states from the very beginning (Kacarska 2012). It started with controlling the movement of their own nationals (to allow the states to be removed from the so-called Black Schengen list) during the visa facilitation process. If they managed to control the movement of their own nationals, especially those who applied for asylum in the EU via biometric passports and readmission obligations (asylum seekers from these states comprise a large portion of asylum seekers in the EU even today), they were promised easier access to the EU as an economic area. Gradually, the focus of movement control shifted to third-country nationals. In effect, the Western Balkan states introduced migration-related legislative and institutional transformations corresponding to the ones already existing in the EU, yet persistent ›non-doing‹ (especially regarding enabling access to rights and services for migrants) remained a main practice of deterrence (Valenta/Zuparic-Iljic/Vidovic 2015; Stojić Mitrović 2019).

    From the very beginning, becoming an active part of the European border regime and implementing EU-centric migration policies, or, to put it simply, conducting control policies over the movements of people, has not been the goal of the states along the Balkan route per se but a means to obtain political and economic benefits from the EU. They are included into the EU border regime as operational partners without formal power to influence migration policies. These states do have a voice, though, not only by creating the image of being able to manage the ›European problem‹, and accordingly receive further access to EU funds, but also by influencing EU migration policy through disobedience and actively avoiding conformity to ›prescribed‹ measures. A striking example of creative state disobedience are the so-called 72-hour-papers, which are legal provisions set by the Serbian 2007 Law on Asylum, later also introduced as law in North Macedonia in June 2015: Their initial function was to give asylum seekers who declared their ›intention to seek asylum‹ to the police the possibility to legally proceed to one of the asylum reception centers located within Serbia, where, in a second step, their asylum requests were to be examined in line with the idea of implementing a functioning asylum system according to EU standards. However, in practice, these papers were used as short-term visas for transiting through North Macedonia and Serbia that were handed out to hundreds of thousands of migrants (Beznec/Speer/Stojić Mitrović 2016: 17–19, 36).

    Furthermore, the introduction of migration control practices is often a means for achieving other political and economic goals. In the accessing states, migration management is seen as services they provide for the EU. In addition, demands created by migration management goals open new possibilities for employment, which are essential to societies with high unemployment rates.

    Besides direct economic benefits, migration has been confirmed to be a politically potent instrument. States and their institutions were more firmly integrated into existing EU structures, especially those related to the prevention of unwanted migration, such as increased police cooperation and Frontex agreements. On a local level, political leaders have increasingly been using migration-related narratives in everyday political life in order to confront the state or other political competitors, often through the use of Ethno-nationalist and related discourses. In recent times, as citizens of the states along the Balkan route themselves migrate in search for jobs and less precarious lives, migration from third states has been discursively linked to the fear of foreigners permanently settling in places at the expense of natives.
    Contemporary Context

    According to a growing body of literature (e.g. Hess/Kasparek 2020; Lunaček Brumen/Meh 2016; Speer 2017), the Balkan route of the year 2015 and the first months of 2016 can be conceptualized in phases, beginning with a clandestine phase, evolving to an open route and formalized corridor and back to an invisible route again. It is necessary to point to the fact that these different phases were not merely the result of state or EU-led top-down approaches, but the consequence of a »dynamic process which resulted from the interplay of state practices, practices of mobility, activities of activists, volunteers, and NGOs, media coverage, etc. The same applies for its closure« (Beznec/Speer/Stojić Mitrović 2016: 6).

    The closure of the corridor and stricter border controls resulted in a large transformation of the Balkan route and mobility practices in the recent years, when push-backs from deep within the EU-territory to neighboring non-EU states, erratic movements across borders and territories of the (Western) Balkan states, or desperate journeys back to Greece and then back to the north became everyday realities. In the same period, the route proliferated into more branches, especially a new one via Bosnia and Herzegovina. This proliferation lead to a heightened circulation of practices, people, and knowledge along these paths: a mushrooming of so-called ›jungle camps‹ in Bosnia and Herzegovina, an escalation of border violence in Croatia, chain push-backs from Slovenia, significant EU financial investments into border control in Croatia and camp infrastructures in neighboring countries, the deployment of Frontex in Albania, etc. As the actual itineraries of people on the move multiplied, people started to reach previously indiscernible spots, resulting in blurring of the differences between entering and exiting borders. Circular transit with many loops, involving moving forward and backwards, became the dominant form of migration movements in the region. It transformed the Balkan route into a »Balkan Circuit« (Stojić Mitrović/Vilenica 2019: 540; see also Stojić Mitrović/Ahmetašević/Beznec/Kurnik 2020). The topography changed from a unidirectional line to a network of hubs, accommodation, and socializing spots. In this landscape, some movements still remain invisible—undetected by actors aiming to support, contain, and even prevent migration. »We have no information about persons who have money to pay for the whole package, transfer, accommodation, food, medical assistance when needed, we have no idea how many of them just went further«, a former MSF employee stressed, »we only see those who reach for aid, who are poor or injured and therefore cannot immediately continue their journey.« Some movements are intentionally invisibilized by support groups in order to avoid unwanted attention, and, consequently, repressive measures have also become a common development in border areas where people on the move are waiting for their chance to cross. However, it seems that circular transnational migration of human beings, resulting directly from the securitarian practices of the European border regime, have also become a usual form of mobility in the region.

    The Balkan route as a whole has been increasingly made invisible to spectators from the EU in the last years. There were no mass media coverage, except for reports on deplorable conditions in certain hubs, such as Belgrade barracks (Serbia), Vučjak camp (Bosnia and Herzegovina), or violent push-backs from Croatia that received global and EU-wide attention. However, this spectacularization was rarely directly attributed to the externalization of border control but rather more readily linked to an presumed inability of the Balkan states to manage migration, or to manage it without the blatant use of violence.

    As Marta Stojić Mitrović and Ana Vilenica (2019) point out, practices, discourses, knowledge, concepts, technologies, even particular narratives, organizations, and individual professionals are following the changed topography. This is evident both in the securitarian and in the humanitarian sector: Frontex is signing or initiating cooperation agreements with non-EU member Balkan states, border guards learn from each other how to prevent movements or how to use new equipment, obscure Orbanist legislative changes and institutionalized practices are becoming mainstream, regional coordinators of humanitarian organizations transplant the same ›best practices‹ how to work with migrants, how to organize their accommodation, what aid to bring and when, and how to ›deal‹ with the local communities in different nation-states, while the emergency framework travels from one space to another. Solidarity groups are networking, exchanging knowledge and practices but simultaneously face an increased criminalization of their activities. The public opinion in different nation states is shaped by the same dominant discourses on migration, far-right groups are building international cooperations and exploit the same narratives that frame migrants and migration as dangerous.
    About the Issue

    This issue of movements highlights the current situation of migration struggles along this fragmented, circular, and precarious route and examines the diverse attempts by the EU, transnational institutions, countries in the region, local and interregional structures, and multiple humanitarian actors to regain control over the movements of migration after the official closure of the humanitarian-securitarian corridor in 2016. It reflects on the highly dynamic and conflicting developments since 2015 and their historical entanglements, the ambiguities of humanitarian interventions and strategies of containment, migratory tactics of survival, local struggles, artistic interventions, regional and transnational activism, and recent initiatives to curb the extensive practices of border violence and push-backs. In doing so, the issue brings back the region on the European agenda and sheds light on the multiple historical disruptions, bordering practices, and connectivities that have been forming its presence.

    EU migration policy is reaffirming old and producing new material borders: from border fences to document checks—conducted both by state authorities and increasingly the general population, like taxi drivers or hostel owners—free movement is put in question for all, and unwanted movements of migrants are openly violently prevented. Violence and repression toward migrants are not only normalized but also further legalized through transformations of national legislation, while migrant solidarity initiatives and even unintentional facilitations of movement or stay (performed by carriers, accommodation providers, and ordinary citizens) are increasingly at risk of being criminalized.

    In line with this present state, only briefly tackled here, a number of contributions gathered in this issue challenge normative perceptions of the restrictive European border regime and engage in the critical analysis of its key mechanisms, symbolic pillars, and infrastructures by framing them as complex and depending on context. Furthermore, some of them strive to find creative ways to circumvent the dominance of linear or even verbal explication and indulge in narrative fragments, interviews, maps, and graphs. All contributions are focused and space- or even person-specific. They are based on extensive research, activist, volunteer or other involvement, and they are reflexive and critical towards predominant perspectives and views.

    Artist and activist Selma Banich, in her contribution entitled »Shining«, named after one of her artistic intervention performed in a Zagreb neighborhood, assembles notes and reflections on her ongoing series of site-specific interventions in Zagreb made of heat sheet (hallmarks of migrants’ rescue boats and the shores of Europe) and her personal notes in which she engages with her encounters with three persons on the move or, rather, on the run from the European border control regime. Her contribution, formulated as a series of fragments of two parallel lines, which on the surface seem loosely, but in fact deeply, connected, speaks of the power of ambivalence and of the complexities of struggles that take place everyday on the fringes of the EU. Andrea Contenta visualizes and analyzes camps that have been mushrooming in Serbia in the recent years with a series of maps and graphs. The author’s detailed analysis—based on a critical use of available, often conflicting, data—shows how Serbia has kept thousands of people outside of the western EU territory following a European strategy of containment. Contenta concludes his contribution with a clear call, stating: »It is not only a theoretical issue anymore; containment camps are all around us, and we cannot just continue to write about it.« Serbia, and Belgrade in particular, is of central importance for transmigration through the Balkans. On a micro-level, the maps of Paul Knopf, Miriam Neßler and Cosima Zita Seichter visualize the so-called Refugee District in Belgrade and shed light on the transformation of urban space by transit migration. On a macro-level, their contribution illustrates the importance of Serbia as a central hub for migrant mobility in the Balkans as well as for the externalization of the European border regime in the region. The collective efforts to support the struggle of the people on the move—by witnessing, documenting, and denouncing push-backs—are presented by the Push-Back Map Collective’s self-reflection. In their contribution to this issue, the Push-Back Map Collective ask themselves questions or start a dialogue among themselves in order to reflect and evaluate the Push-Back map (www.pushbackmap.org) they launched and maintain. They also investigate the potentials of political organizing that is based on making an invisible structure visible. The activist collective Info Kolpa from Ljubljana gives an account of push-backs conducted by the Slovenian police and describes initiatives to oppose what they deem as systemic violence of police against people on the move and violent attempts to close the borders. The text contributes to understanding the role of extralegal police practices in restoring the European border regime and highlights the ingenuity of collectives that oppose it. Patricia Artimova’s contribution entitled »A Volunteer’s Diary« could be described as a collage of diverse personal notes of the author and others in order to present the complexity of the Serbian and Bosnian context. The genre of diary notes allows the author to demonstrate the diachronic line presented in the volunteers’ personal engagements and in the gradual developments occurring in different sites and states along the route within a four-year period. She also traces the effects of her support for people on the move on her social relations at home. Emina Bužinkić focuses on the arrest, detention, and deportation of a non-EU national done by Croatia to show the implications of current securitization practices on the everyday lives and life projects of migrants and refugees. Based on different sources (oral histories, official documentation, personal history, etc.), her intervention calls for direct political action and affirms a new genre one could provisionally call ›a biography of a deportation‹. In her »Notes from the Field« Azra Hromadžić focuses on multiple encounters between the locals of Bihać, a city located in the northwestern corner of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and people on the move who stop there while trying to cross into Croatia and the EU. Some of the sections and vignettes of her field notes are written as entries describing a particular day, while others are more anthropological and analytical reflections. Her focus lies on the local people’s perspectives, the dynamics of their daily encounters with migrants and alleged contradictions, philigram distinctions, as well as experiences of refugeeness that create unique relationships between people and histories in Bihać. Karolína Augustová and Jack Sapoch, activists of the grassroots organization No Name Kitchen and members of the Border Violence Monitoring Network, offer a systematized account of violence towards people on the move with their research report. The condensed analysis of violent practices, places, victims, and perpetrators of the increasingly securitized EU border apparatus is based on interviews conducted with people on the move in border areas with Croatia, Šid (Serbia) and Velika Kladuša (BiH). They identify a whole range of violence that people on the move are facing, which often remains ignored or underestimated, and thus condoned, in local national settings as well as on the EU and global level. They conclude that border violence against people on the move cannot be interpreted as mere aggression emanating from individuals or groups of the police but is embedded in the states’ structures.

    We also gathered scientific papers discussing and analyzing different aspects of the corridor and the years thereafter. In their article, Andrej Kurnik and Barbara Beznec focus on assemblages of mobility, which are composed of practices of migrants and local agencies that strive to escape what the authors call ›the sovereign imperative‹. In their analysis of different events and practices since 2015, they demonstrate how migratory movements reveal the hidden subalternized local forms of escape and invigorate the dormant critique of coloniality in the geopolitical locations along the Balkan route. In their concluding remarks, the authors ask to confront the decades-long investments into repressive and exclusionary EU migration policies and point to the political potential of migration as an agent of decolonization. The authors stress that post-Yugoslav European borderland that has been a laboratory of Europeanization for the last thirty years, a site of a ›civilizing‹ mission that systematically diminishes forms of being in common based on diversity and alterity is placed under scrutiny again. Romana Pozniak explores the ethnography of aid work, giving special attention to dynamics between emotional and rational dimensions. Based primarily on interviews conducted with humanitarians employed during the mass refugee transit through the Balkan corridor, she analyzes, historizes, and contextualizes their experiences in terms of affective labor. The author defines affective labor as efforts invested in reflecting on morally, emotionally, and mentally unsettling affects. She deals with local employment measures and how they had an impact on employed workers. Pozniak discusses the figure of the compassionate aid professional by it in a specific historical context of the Balkan corridor and by including personal narrations about it. The article of Robert Rydzewski focuses on the situation in Serbia after the final closure of the formalized corridor in March 2016. Rydzewski argues that extensive and multidirectional migrant movements on the doorstep of the EU are an expression of hope to bring a ›stuckedness‹ to an end. In his analysis, he juxtaposes the representations of migrant movements as linear with migrant narratives and their persistent unilinear movement despite militarized external European Union borders, push-backs, and violence of border guards. Rydzewsky approaches the structural and institutional imposition of waiting with the following questions: What does interstate movement mean for migrants? Why do migrants reject state protection offered by government facilities in favor of traveling around the country? In her article, Céline Cantat focuses on the Serbian capital Belgrade and how ›solidarities in transit‹ or the heterogeneous community of actors supporting people on the move emerged and dissolved in the country in 2015/2016. She analyzes the gradual marginalization of migrant presence and migration solidarity in Belgrade as an outcome of imposing of an institutionalized, official, camp-based, and heavily regulated refugee aid field. This field regulates the access not only to camps per se, but also to fundings for activities by independent groups or civil sector organizations. Teodora Jovanović, by using something she calls ›autoethnography of participation‹, offers a meticulous case study of Miksalište, a distribution hub in Belgrade established in 2015, which she joined as a volunteer in 2016. The transformation of this single institution is examined by elaborating on the transformation within the political and social contexts in Serbia and its capital, Belgrade, regarding migration policies and humanitarian assistance. She identifies three, at times intertwined, modes of response to migration that have shaped the development of the Miksalište center in corresponding stages: voluntarism, professionalization, and re-statization. She connects the beginning and end of each stage of organizing work in Miksalište by investigating the actors, roles, activities, and manners in which these activities are conducted in relation to broader changes within migration management and funding.

    Finishing this editorial in the aftermath of brutal clashes at the borders of Turkey and Greece and in the wake of the global pandemic of COVID-19—isolated in our homes, some of us even under curfew—we experience an escalation and normalization of restrictions, not only of movement but also of almost every aspect of social and political life. We perceive a militarization, which pervades public spaces and discourses, the introduction of new and the reinforcement of old borders, in particular along the line of EU external borders, a heightened immobilization of people on the move, their intentional neglect in squats and ›jungles‹ or their forceful encampment in deplorable, often unsanitary, conditions, where they are faced with food reductions, violence of every kind, and harrowing isolation. At the same time, we witness an increase of anti-migrant narratives not only spreading across obscure social networks but also among high ranked officials. Nonetheless, we get glimpses of resistance and struggles happening every day inside and outside the camps. Videos of protests and photos of violence that manage to reach us from the strictly closed camps, together with testimonies and outcries, are fragments of migrant agency that exist despite overwhelming repression.

    https://movements-journal.org/issues/08.balkanroute
    #Balkans #route_des_Balkans #asile #migrations #réfugiés #revue #humanitarisme #espoir #attente #mobilité #Belgrade #Serbie #solidarité #Miksaliste #Bihac #Bosnie #Bosnie-Herzégovine #encampement #corridor #cartographie #visualisation

  • Réfugiés : les Balkans jouent les « #chiens_de-garde » de l’UE

    La #Serbie a commencé durant l’été à construire une barrière de barbelés sur sa frontière avec la #Macédoine_du_Nord. Officiellement pour empêcher la propagation de la Covid-19... #Jasmin_Rexhepi, qui préside l’ONG Legis, dénonce la dérive sécuritaire des autocrates balkaniques. Entretien.

    D. Kožul (D.K.) : Que pensez-vous des raisons qui ont poussé la Serbie à construire une barrière à sa frontière avec la Macédoine du Nord ? Officiellement, il s’agit de lutter contre la propagation de l’épidémie de coronavirus. Or, on sait que le nombre de malades est minime chez les réfugiés...

    Jasmin Rexhepi (J.R.) : C’est une mauvaise excuse trouvée par un communicant. On construit des barbelés aux frontières des pays des Balkans depuis 2015. Ils sont posés par des gouvernements ultra-conservateurs, pour des raisons populistes. Les réfugiés ne sont pas une réelle menace sécuritaire pour nos pays en transition, ils ne sont pas plus porteurs du virus que ne le sont nos citoyens, et les barbelés n’ont jamais été efficaces contre les migrations.

    “Faute de pouvoir améliorer la vie de leurs citoyens, les populistes conservateurs se réfugient dans une prétendue défense de la nation contre des ennemis imaginaires.”

    D.K. : Peut-on parler d’une « orbanisation » des pays des Balkans occidentaux ? Quelle est la position à ce sujet des autorités de Macédoine du Nord ?

    J.R. : Tous les pays des Balkans aimeraient rejoindre l’Union européenne (UE), cela ne les empêche pas d’élever des barbelés sur leurs frontières mutuelles, ce qui est contraire aux principes européens de solidarité et d’unité. Quand les dirigeants populistes conservateurs ne peuvent offrir de progrès et d’avancées à leurs citoyens, ils se réfugient dans une prétendue défense de l’État, de la nation et de la religion contre des ennemis imaginaires. Dans le cas présent, ce sont les réfugiés, les basanés et les musulmans qui sont visés, mais il y a eu d’autres boucs émissaires par le passé.

    La Hongrie a ouvert la danse, mais elle n’est pas la seule, il y a eu aussi l’Autriche, la Bulgarie et la Macédoine du Nord en 2016, quand Gruevski était au pouvoir, et maintenant, malheureusement, c’est au tour de la Serbie. La xénophobie des dirigeants de ces États se voit clairement dans leurs discours. La barrière en question n’inquiète toutefois pas outre mesure les dirigeants macédoniens, car ils savent que rien de tout cela n’empêche réellement les migrations, et que ce ne sont pas des barbelés qui vont maintenir les réfugiés de notre côté de la frontière. Surtout pas maintenant qu’ils ont été habitués aux déportations de masse.

    D.K. : Certains disent que cette barrière pourrait couvrir la totalité de la frontière serbo-macédonienne, soit presque 150 km. Cela peut-il freiner les migrations ?

    J.R. : Tout d’abord, il est physiquement impossible d’installer une telle barrière dans les montagnes. À quoi bon couper tant d’arbres, détruire la nature ? Cette barrière ne s’étendra que dans les plaines, comme dans beaucoup d’autres pays. Là où, de toute façon, il n’y a déjà pas grand monde qui passe. La majorité des voies migratoires empruntent des routes de montagnes, qu’il est physiquement difficile de contrôler. C’est d’ailleurs pour cela que beaucoup de migrants entrent en Macédoine du Nord, parce qu’ils peuvent passer par les montagnes. Quant aux autres, ils coupent tout simplement les barbelés.

    “Ceinte de barbelés, l’Europe du XXIe siècle mène une politique hypocrite.”

    D.K. : Les pays des Balkans acceptent-ils de jouer le rôle de chien de garde de l’UE ? Il n’y a aucun pourtant aucune demande officielle de Bruxelles pour la construction de barrières physiques...

    J.R. : L’UE n’a jamais demandé officiellement la construction de barbelés. Ce sont certains de ses États membres ayant pris la responsabilité de « défendre » l’Europe qui ont imposé cette pratique, et offert des barbelés aux pays d’Europe du Sud-Est. C’est ainsi que la route des Balkans a été bloquée en mars 2016, sur la décision de l’Autriche, parce que l’Allemagne commençait soi-disant à refouler les réfugiés, et pas du fait d’une décision officielle des institutions européennes. De même, l’accord entre l’UE et la Turquie, survenu à la même période, a d’abord été signé par un pays de l’UE, qui a ensuite convaincu les autres de faire de même. Ceci étant, les barbelés facilitent le travail des patrouilles de Frontex, l’agence de l’Union européenne chargée du contrôle et de la gestion des frontières extérieures de l’espace Schengen. La position de l’UE n’est donc pas unifiée, d’où l’impression que cette Europe du XXIe siècle, ceinte de barbelés, mène une politique hypocrite et refuse d’assumer ses responsabilités.

    https://www.courrierdesbalkans.fr/refugies-balkans-chiens-de-garde-UE
    #réfugiés #asile #migrations #Balkans #route_des_Balkans #externalisation #murs #barrière_frontalière #frontières

    –—

    sur le mur entre Serbie et Macédoine :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/872957

  • Kosovo-Serbien-Treffen in den USA: Trump als Friedensstifter?
    https://diasp.eu/p/11603012

    Kosovo-Serbien-Treffen in den USA: Trump als Friedensstifter?

    Donald Trump braucht einen außenpolitischen Erfolg und will den Konflikt zwischen Serbien und Kosovo lösen. Dafür hat er Vučić und Hoti getroffen. Kosovo-Serbien-Treffen in den USA: Trump als Friedensstifter? #Kosovo #Serbien #DonaldTrump #USA #USAunterDonaldTrump #Amerika #Politik #Schwerpunkt

  • Un mur en Serbie...

    Last week, we wrote how Serbian authorities, in complete secrecy, started the construction of a razor-wire fence in the South to prevent the irregular entry of refugees from North Macedonia. The photos which first appeared on the Asylum Protection Center’s (APC) Twitter account show that the fence is being set up from #Presevo to the east, along the border with North Macedonia. It’s worrying how the Serbian local authorities interpret this action as a “one step forward in the Europeanization process” of the country (https://www.slobodnaevropa.org/a/srbija-dize-zicanu-ogradu-na-granici-sa-severnom-makedonijom/30789825.html). At the same time, Serbian NGOs have registered an increase in number of pushbacks, specifically Asylum Protection Center (APC) is recording an increase in the return of people to North Macedonia.

    Le tweet du Asylum Protection Center:


    https://twitter.com/APC_CZA/status/1293865742153261056

    Reçu via la mailing-list Inicijativa Dobrodosli, mail du 24.08.2020
    #frontières #murs #barrières_frontalières #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Balkans #Macédoine #refoulements #push-backs #Balkans #route_des_Balkans

    • La Serbie clôture sa frontière avec la Macédoine du Nord

      18 août - 18h30 :

      #clôture métallique sur sa frontière avec la #Macédoine_du_Nord, près de #Preševo. Le maire de cette commune, #Shqiprim_Arifi, a confirmé à Radio Free Europe que la construction de cette clôture faisait partie d’un accord avec l’Union européenne (UE). « Nous pensons que la clôture a pour fonction de sécuriser davantage les frontières des pays extérieurs à l’UE face aux réfugiés, qui vont finir par revenir de manière massive sur la route des Balkans. » Shqiprim Arifi ajoute qu’il a « personnellement de sérieuses réserves » sur cette façon de traiter les réfugiés. Les autorités serbes refusent de communiquer toute information sur cette clôture.

      Source : dernières info du Courrier des Balkans —> https://www.courrierdesbalkans.fr/les-dernieres-infos-refugies-balkans

    • La barrière frontalière est mentionnée dans cet entretien de #Jasmin_Rexhepi pour le Courrier des Balkans :

      La #Serbie a commencé durant l’été à construire une barrière de barbelés sur sa frontière avec la #Macédoine_du_Nord. Officiellement pour empêcher la propagation de la Covid-19... #Jasmin_Rexhepi, qui préside l’ONG Legis, dénonce la dérive sécuritaire des autocrates balkaniques. Entretien.

      D. Kožul (D.K.) : Que pensez-vous des raisons qui ont poussé la Serbie à construire une barrière à sa frontière avec la Macédoine du Nord ? Officiellement, il s’agit de lutter contre la propagation de l’épidémie de coronavirus. Or, on sait que le nombre de malades est minime chez les réfugiés...

      Jasmin Rexhepi (J.R.) : C’est une mauvaise excuse trouvée par un communicant. On construit des barbelés aux frontières des pays des Balkans depuis 2015. Ils sont posés par des gouvernements ultra-conservateurs, pour des raisons populistes. Les réfugiés ne sont pas une réelle menace sécuritaire pour nos pays en transition, ils ne sont pas plus porteurs du virus que ne le sont nos citoyens, et les barbelés n’ont jamais été efficaces contre les migrations.

      “Faute de pouvoir améliorer la vie de leurs citoyens, les populistes conservateurs se réfugient dans une prétendue défense de la nation contre des ennemis imaginaires.”

      https://seenthis.net/messages/877066

  • Palestinien fais-toi naturaliser ouïghour !
    https://www.legrandsoir.info/palestinien-fais-toi-naturaliser-ouighour.html

    La campagne actuellement conduite par les Etats-Unis, et ses idiots utiles, pour nous inquiéter sur le sort des Ouïghours est détestable car elle nous oblige à rejoindre le coin, celui des méchants. Ne pas accepter sans preuves les propos tenus par les chargés de propagande de Trump devient une complicité de crime. Pourtant, pour avoir été le témoin de tant de faux drames, inventés pour le seul maintien du monopole colonialiste étasunien sur le monde, que je me sens obligé de faire part de mon expérience du mensonge.

    Surprenante cette campagne « en soutien au peuple Ouïghour » le jour où, avec l’approbation de Falstaff-Dupond, l’aigle qui couve le nid de la Justice depuis la colonne Vendôme, l’Assemblée vient de voter une sorte d’annulation à vie des droits de tout condamné pour terrorisme. Libéré, peine purgée, l’abruti de vingt ans qui a cru libérer la Syrie en rejoignant Daech, restera à jamais un homme sans liberté. Mais remarquons que les députés qui viennent de voter ce texte, réhabilitant la « relègue » et la double peine, sont par ailleurs des amis de la liberté. Liberté pour la minorité ouïghoure essentiellement de culture musulmane chinoise, mais pas de liberté possible en France pour celui que la justice qualifie de « terroriste ». Si Pékin a la fasciste audace de demander des comptes aux très nombreux Ouïghours qui ont rejoint, eux aussi, Daech et al Nosra en Syrie, puis sont rentrés à la maison : c’est un crime contre l’humanité. En revanche, quand Dupond-Moretti et ses amis sécuritaires applaudissent à leur loi toute neuve et honteuse, c’est l’expression « d’une avancée du droit ». Bon : le Chinois est jaune et très méchant, le Français est blanc et très gentil. D’ailleurs ce n’est pas lui qui crèverait des yeux à coup de LBD.


    Longtemps la désignation officielle, par les EU ou l’OTAN, d’une minorité opprimée m’a bien énervé. J’étais surpris que des citoyens généreux et intelligents, ne soient pas étonnés que des humanistes du calibre de Nixon, Reagan, les deux Bush, puis Trump et Netanyahou leur désignent un ennemi à combattre, un oppresseur de minorités. Dans ma vie prolongée, il m’est assez facile, pour l’avoir constaté, de compter ce genre d’utilisation de la misère et de l’oppression comme un outil de guerre de l’impérialisme.

    La dernière mouture remonte à la supercherie des « Printemps Arabes ». C’est dans un entretien avec le New York Times , qu’un haut diplomate EU en a livré le secret : « Plutôt que de dépenser des milliards en cadeaux et en armement, il suffit d’investir 500 millions auprès d’internautes d’un pays dont on veut changer le régime pour que monte en force une révolte, souvent légitime. C’est une grosse économie en dollars et en sang versé. » La recette ? Former des jeunes (arabes par exemple), ou des « ONG », à toutes les subtilités de l’Internet et à celles aussi des réseaux sociaux. Actuellement la pendule étasunienne est donc calée à l’heure de Pékin. Très bien. Mais retrouvons la mémoire pour nous rappeler que l’opposant maximo à la Chine, avant les JO de 2008, n’était autre que Robert Ménard et sa déshonorante association Reporters Sans Frontières. Une engeance recevant des fonds de la NED, instrument de propagande de Washington.

    Repartons plus loin dans le temps. Qui se souvient des petits Biafrais atrocement maigres, montrés (déjà) aux journaux par Kouchner qui, aidé d’intellectuels espions du SDECE, mettait au point une idéologie qui allait conduire à la fin des guerres de libérations, non oblitérées par l’Occident : « Le droit d’Ingérence ». Ah les Biafrais ! Cette ethnie englobée dans l’odieux Nigéria ! S’ériger en république autonome était tout à fait légitime. Pourtant le nerf de la révolte n’était pas la liberté mais le pétrole, le sous-sol biafrais est d’un noir d’huile. Faute de derricks à Colombey, De Gaulle ne s’est pas honoré en activant là-bas une sécession conduite par des généraux corrompus. Et nous avons pleuré ces enfants mourant pour « la liberté de leur peuple ». Alors qu’on les faisait crever pour obtenir de terribles photos qui, au bout de l’horreur entraîneraient la baisse du prix du litre de « super ». De 1962 à 1975, Johnson et Nixon ont soutenu la liberté des Méos et de leurs combattants, armés (par eux). Coincés entre Chine, Vietnam et Laos, ces royalistes étaient très utiles pour lutter contre le communisme. Le Vietnam tombé, cette cause naguère essentielle, celle des Méos a disparu des programmes. En Afghanistan viendra, plus tard, la déification de l’islamiste puis le soutien apporté à un incontestable combattant de la démocratie : Ben Laden.

    La recette reste bonne, activer une ethnie comme on met une bûche au feu. Cette pratique marche d’autant mieux qu’entre-temps le droit-de-l’hommisme, concept néo-libéral, a été forgé sous le marteau de Kouchner. Avec une telle arme le scrupule de détruire un État disparaît. Au nom du droit, le leur, les démolisseurs peuvent bombarder sans mauvaise conscience, comme ils le firent en Serbie. L’épisode historique des valeureux « rebelles tchétchènes », dont on nous a longuement loué mérites et qualités dans les journaux, au tournant de 1990, a finalement érigé la charia en 1999. Ce qui indique un amour sans murailles pour la démocratie et la liberté. Des journalistes ont alors crapahuté dans les montagnes, de concert avec ces fous de Dieu, mais en oubliant de prévenir les lecteurs de leur véritable but : le califat. Nous avons donc pleuré là aussi. Constater la nature mortifère de ces rebelles justifie-t-il les crimes de guerre commis contre eux ou contre la population ? Atrocités commises par des Russes ou par le dictateur Bassaïev ? Non. Mais que l’on vienne alors nous expliquer pourquoi la France est en guerre pour préserver l’Afrique de l’ouest des mains de Daech... Alors que Poutine, lui, était prié de faire bon ménage avec la charia, dans un état de la Fédération de Russie ?

    Mon métier a voulu que, pour un temps plus ou moins long, mais toujours « sur le terrain », j’ai vu l’Occident dénoncer les crimes des autres sans jamais regarder les siens. Deux exemples de massacres, utilisés comme arme de propagande, ont été pour moi l’objet de reportages éclairants sur la puissance du mensonge. Le premier se déroule en février 1991 dans le Kurdistan irakien. Sous l’effroyable feu de « la coalition internationale », Saddam Hussein se retire du Koweït. Dans le nord de l’Irak les peshmergas, combattants kurdes, prennent en main la population et parviennent aisément à convaincre les familles que l’heure du crime est de retour : Saddam va se venger sur leur peuple. En liaison avec Washington, avec James Baker, mais aussi l’immanquable Kouchner et la naïve Danielle Mitterrand, les peshmergas poussent la population vers les montagnes. Puis la confinent là-haut dans des conditions de survie difficiles. Ainsi créé, l’abcès de fixation qui est un « drame humanitaire » justifie une zone d’interdiction de vol pour les avions du raïs et un opprobre international. Heureusement « le génocide » annoncé n’a jamais eu lieu et, selon de dignes témoins, jamais envisagé par Saddam. Les Kurdes, une fois de plus dans leur interminable errance, ont été utilisés comme un argument cynique de géopolitique. Le fond n’étant pas de leur donner un meilleur avenir. C’est depuis Bagdad, Erbil, Kirkouk, Souleymanieh que j’ai vécu, les yeux ouverts, ce moment où l’on faisande l’histoire.

    Un ultime exemple avec l’escroquerie médatico-politique, celle du Kosovo. En 1999, le « monde libre » nous annonce que le Kosovo, province serbe majoritairement peuplée d’Albanais, est un lieu de martyre. Avec tueries de masse, camps de concentration et toutes horreurs de la barbarie. Edwy Plenel, alors directeur du quotidien Le Monde , nous annonce « 700 000 fantômes » au Kosovo. Pour parler sans métaphore, 700 000 morts. Selon le porte-parole de l’Otan le stade de Pristina, la capitale de la province, a été transformé en camp comme Santiago sous Pinochet. La propagande se nourrit de clichés.

    Arrivant par miracle jusqu’à ce Stadium, j’ai la surprise de le voir éclairé par des phares de voitures, avec des joueurs de foot à l’entrainement. Pendant des jours, du matin au soir, j’ai cherché les 700 000 morts de Plenel. Pas de trace. L’essentiel des victimes étaient mortes sous les bombes et missiles de l’Otan, tirés par des avions de chasse confondant des files de tracteurs avec des colonnes de chars serbes. Qui n’existaient d’ailleurs pas.

    En dehors de leur mortelle incursion au sein de Daech en Syrie, je ne connais rien des Ouïghours, je n’en dirai donc rien. Au contraire de ceux qui parlent mais ne savent rien. Je rappelle seulement la litanie de quelques mensonges, forgés à Washington au nom de l’America First. Un maître du monde soucieux de ne rien perdre de sa force coloniale bétonnée par le mensonge démocratique. Pour conclure, comment peut-on croire en une rumeur mondialisée, celle des Ouïghours martyrisés alors que les Palestiniens, niés, volés, bafoués, emprisonnés, torturés, continuent de l’être dans l’indifférence de ceux qui attaquent aujourd’hui Pékin. Nous laissant croire que démocratie et liberté ne sont pas leur objectif premier. Souvenez-vous enfin d’une autre offensive, avec BHL, Clooney et toute la troupe d’Hollywood sur le « drame du Darfour », l’objectif étant de détourner la douleur de l’opinion de la Palestine vers un morceau du Soudan. Que les amis droit-de-l’hommistes se souviennent, s’ils sont en panne de noble cause : en 1982 l’ONU a déclaré que le massacre de Sabra et Chatila était un "acte de génocide"... et rien n’est c’est passé après ce crime imprescriptible. Si j’étais un citoyen de Gaza je demanderais ma naturalisation ouïghoure, et mon sort intéresserait enfin le monde. Celui qui compte.

    
Tant qu’elle reste sélective l’indignation n’est rien.

    Jacques-Marie BOURGET

    #minorité #minorité_opprimée #oppression #ouïghours #ouïghour #minorités #Palestine #Palestiniens #Gaza #Daech e#al_nosra #Printemps_Arabes #internautes #ong #robert ménard #RSF #NED #Biafra #bernard_kouchner #Vietnam #Afghanistan #ben_laden #droit-de-l’hommisme #Serbie #daech #Irak #danielle_mitterrand #Kosovo #edwy_plenel #bhl #Darfour #propagande #enfumage #manipulation #histoire #médias

  • L’une des plus grandes décharges d’Europe attise les convoitises de Suez aux dépens de l’efficacité écologique
    https://www.bastamag.net/Decharge-montagne-de-dechets-incinerateur-Suez-tri-selectif-Serbie-polluti

    Une des plus grandes décharges à ciel ouvert d’Europe empoisonne les sols et l’air de la banlieue de Belgrade. Suez, géant français de la gestion des déchets et de l’eau, a conclu un très gros contrat avec la mairie de la capitale serbe pour bâtir un incinérateur. La montagne d’ordures va-t-elle disparaître et le recyclage se développer ? Pas si sûr. On a beau être à plus de 700 kilomètres de la côte la plus proche, une armée de mouettes obscurcit le ciel. Au milieu de coteaux agricoles, à quelques (...) #Décrypter

    / #Europe, Pollutions , #Toxiques, #Multinationales, #Reportages, A la une

    #Pollutions_

  • L’Europe centrale fait face à une hausse des cas de Covid-19
    https://www.lemonde.fr/international/article/2020/07/08/l-europe-centrale-fait-face-a-une-hausse-des-cas-de-covid-19_6045612_3210.ht

    Si les chiffres absolus restent encore limités et que les systèmes sanitaires locaux semblent tenir la charge, ce pic vient démontrer les limites de la méthode de protection des ex-pays de l’Est. Ceux-ci s’étaient barricadés derrière leurs frontières dès que les premiers cas étaient apparus à l’Ouest, en mars. Cela avait permis de protéger les populations locales. Mais les travailleurs partis à l’Ouest sont désormais de retour pour les congés d’été et importent le virus avec eux. Sans compter la particularité de la Croatie, qui a rouvert largement ses frontières aux touristes, cruciaux pour l’économie, ce qui s’est immédiatement traduit par une hausse des cas, même si les autorités se veulent rassurantes. Dans ce contexte, certaines capitales ont décidé de réintroduire des contrôles aux frontières dans la cacophonie. La Slovénie exige par exemple des tests négatifs de certains Tchèques en route pour la Croatie, tandis que la Slovaquie a placé le Monténégro en « zone rouge » et interdit à ses concitoyens d’y partir en vacances. L’Autriche exige de son côté à nouveau aux voyageurs venant de Bulgarie ou de Roumanie de présenter un test négatif ou de se soumettre à une quatorzaine.

    #Covid-19#migrant#migration#serbie#slovenie#croatie#montenegro#slovaquie#autriche#retour#tourisme#economie#sante

  • INFO PARK 17 – 23 June 2020

    Serbia
    ➢ Anti-migrant rhetoric reached its peak on 20 June, World Refugee Day, when an antimigrant protest was organized in Belgrade downtown, as well as in Banja Koviljaca,in western Serbia. Despite repeated calls for action on social media in the days before the event, only around one hundred people gathered in Belgrade and 400 in Banja
    Koviljaca, where an asylum center is located. They shouted anti-migrant and far right paroles and called for closure of refugee camps in Serbia, but no incidents were reported. Despite clear need for restriction of hate speech and drawing a clear line between hate speech and freedom of expression, which is the role of the state, such
    rhetoric is allowed and unpunished, as is proven with this protest.

    #covid-19 #migration #migrant #serbie #manifestation #xenophobie #belgrade #banjakoviljaca

  • THE DARK SIDE OF EUROPEANISATION. Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and the European Border Regime

    While the external borders of the European Union have remained largely closed for people on the move since 2016, the two neighbouring states, Serbia, and Bosnia & Herzegovina, have become the main transit countries in Southeast Europe, with migrations taking place in a clandestine manner, often back and forth and exposed to brutal border pushbacks. Examining migration movements, policies, public discourses and struggles in the Balkans between the summer of migration in 2015 and the pandemic crisis in 2020, this study provides an analysis of the impact of the EUropean border and migration regime in the region, which has become a #buffer_zone for people on the move. Tracing the complex interplay of EU, state and local institutions, it offers insight into how policies of the securitisation and militarisation of the EU’s external borders are intertwined with the region’s EU accession process.

    https://www.rosalux.rs/en/dark-side-europeanisation
    #rapport #border_regime #Bosnie #Balkans #Serbie #migrations #asile #réfugiés #frontières #frontières_extérieures #transit #Europe #EU #UE #militarisation #sécurisation #militarisation_des_frontières

    ping @luciebacon @isskein

  • Info Park Weekly 10 – 16 June 2020

    Serbia

    More and more refugees and other migrants are leaving reception centers in Serbia following the end of the state of emergency and lifting of lockdown measures. According to the data from Info Park’s mobile team, the number of the refugees and migrants in the
    central Belgrade area has constantly been on the rise with approximately 200 persons present daily. According to the latest data of the Serbian Commissariat for Refugees and Migration (SCRM), 4,677 people are registered in 18 camps which is almost two times
    less than during the state of emergency. This resulted in the reorganization of accommodation facilities across the country. The SCRM announced the closure of reception centers in Bujanovac and Pirot for renovation during summer, while beneficiaries and staff will be relocated to Vranje and Divljana RCs respectively.

    Despite a rapid downfall of the number of migrants in the government-run centers, Serbian Ministry of Interior continued with illegal practice of pushbacks to Macedonia. Info Park was approached by a Syrian man who stated he had been collected in central
    Belgrade and driven 400km south with two other migrants near Tabanovce on Serbian – Macedonian border. All three of them returned to Belgrade the following day.

    The number of Covid-19 cases in Serbia is on the rise again. However, there have been no registered cases among the migrant population so far. Living in overcrowded reception centers with no possibility to practice physical distancing or follow hygienic measures puts them at increased risk of contracting the virus. Even if they have some
    symptoms, they are afraid to seek testing or care. As a result of these new developments, Info Park decided to reduce its working hours and the number of beneficiaries accommodated in our daily shelter. To find out more on humanitarian response during COVID-19 in Serbia, read the appendix on NGO reflections on migration during coronavirus, written by Avanti Puri.

    Croatia
    Amnesty International has accused the EU of turning a blind eye to Croatian police violence targeting migrants and called on the bloc to probe alleged abuses. Amnesty International late Thursday cited an incident which allegedly took place in late May near Bosnian border. A group of 16 Pakistani and Afghan asylum-seekers were “bound,
    brutally beaten and tortured” by Croatian police after having illegally entered the country, the rights monitor said in a statement. Greece

    Greece
    The UN refugee agency (UNHCR) urged Greece to investigate multiple reports of push backs of asylum-seekers by Greek authorities at the country’s sea and land borders. The
    agency said that while the number of asylum-seekers arriving in Greece by land and sea had dropped significantly since March, the number of reported pushbacks has been rising.

    #covid-19 #migration #migrant #croatie #grece #serbie #camp #campementinformel #refoulement #republiquedemacedoine #violence

  • Info Park
    Weekly 3 – 9 June 2020

    Serbia
    ➢ Filip Radovanović (23), who was arrested in Obrenovac after the attack on a refugee reception center, concluded a plea agreement with the Prosecutor’s Office, which sentenced him to eight months in prison. Filip caused an incident on 6 May, when he broke through the fence of Obrenovac reception center with his car, which he broadcasted live on his Facebook profile spreading anti-migrant hate messages.
    ➢ Belgrade police kept a regular presence at Luka Ćelović (or so-called Afghani) Park forcing refugees to leave or hide, yet Info Park mobile team counted approximately 100 migrants on average in the park (daily minimum was 70 while on the other days 140 individuals were present in the park). Still, lots of migrants are visible throughout
    central Belgrade.
    ➢ The bordering areas with Bosnia, Croatia, Hungary, and Romania are seeing increasing number of migrants staying in the open, waiting for an opportunity to cross the border. The number of people on the move (outside of regular camps) is estimated to be over 1,500.

    Croatia
    ➢ On Friday, 5 May, Zagreb-based Center for Peace Studies (CMS) filed a criminal complaint with the State Attorney’s Office in Croatia against unknown perpetrators among police officers on suspicion of degrading treatment and torture of 33 people and their violent, illegal expulsion from the territory of Croatia to Bosnia and Herzegovina. Moreover, according to the 2019 Aida Country Report on Croatia, the Croatian police pushed back as many as 1,514 people by force in the period between January and November 2019.

    Bosnia and Herzegovina
    ➢ CARE International released a report in March about the treatment of migrants in Bosnia and Herzegovina while the updated version of the assessment was released in late May
    2020. The report detailed incidents of violence at the hands of Croatian police and authorities. Additionally, the report said that the situation worsened because of the
    restrictions imposed by COVID-19 pandemic and that all international nongovernmental organizations predicted that such a trend would continue when the summer arrives, and restrictions are lifted

    Greece
    ➢ Greece has shifted the problem with accommodation for refugees and other migrants from islands to the mainland. According to UNHCR, around 9,000 refugees started leaving accommodation in camps, apartments and hotels in Greece to vacate much needed accommodation for asylum-seekers currently living in overcrowded conditions on the Greek islands – the move which may push many into poverty and homelessness. This followed the passing of a new law in March 2020 that reduced the grace period for newly recognized refugees to move out of organized accommodation from six months to 30 days.

    #Covid-19 #Migration #Migrant #Balkans #serbie #camp #croatie #refoulement #plaintepenale #bosnieherzegovine #camp #grece #transfert

  • Info Park Weekly 27 May – 2 June 2020

    Serbia
    ➢ Serbian Ministry of Defense dropped the tender for procurement of razor wire originally intended for fencing the reception/asylum centers. As cited on the Ministry’s website, the reasons for this are "objective and verifiable and could have not been foreseen at the time of initiating the procedure”. This is a small but important victory for humanitarian organizations Info Park, A11 Initiative, PIN and other defenders of refugee and migrant human rights who called upon the Ministry to stop the dangerous process which would
    lead to further militarization of migration management in Serbia.
    ➢ The strong trend of migrants and refugees leaving reception centers in Serbia continued this week. On June 1, as per SCRM data 5 687 people are registered in 18 camps, 40% down from only a month ago when the centers were still in quarantine. Out of this number, 1171 are in asylum centers and 4516 in reception centers. The outflow of centers’ beneficiaries contributed to better living conditions, so the camps are not overcrowded
    anymore– Adasevci (690) and Krnjaca (612) are the busiest places at the moment. Thousands of migrants are already outside, in border areas with Bosnia, Croatia, Hungary and Romania as well as in Belgrade central area (according to Info Park’s assessment, around 300 persons). No corona cases have been registered among the
    migrants so far, despite occasional testing

    Bosnia and Herzegovina
    ➢ Danish Refugee Council (DRC) active in the field in BiH has confirmed the accusations made last week by migrants who were illegally expelled to BiH from Croatia, while experiencing inhuman treatment when Croatian police spray-painted orange crosses on
    their heads. In April alone, DRC teams in BiH recorded 1,641 cases of refugees and migrants returning from Croatia to Bosnia. Of that number, 891 said they had suffered violence or physical assault, 1,253 said their property had either been confiscated or
    destroyed (set on fire), 871 said Croatian police had either confiscated or destroyed their identification documents, and 445 person said they were denied the opportunity to seek
    asylum, despite explicitly asking about it. To find out more on the current situation in BiH, please read this weekly appendix written by Aleksandra Damjanovic from DRC in BiH.
    ➢ According to local BiH web portal Klix, The State Investigation and Protection Agency (SIPA) is implementing an action code-named “Trieste” ordered by the Una-Sana Canton Prosecutor’s Office. The operation is aimed at breaking up an organized criminal group
    that has been smuggling migrants from BiH through Croatia to other European Union countries. The “Trieste” operation is also being carried out in Croatia, in cooperation with EUROPOL. Searches are being conducted at five locations in Velika Kladusa, Cazin and
    Bihac. Eight people were arrested so far - four in BiH and four in Croatia.

    #Covid-19 #Migration #Migrant #Balkans #Serbie #camp #Bosnie-Herzégovine #Refoulement

  • Frontex bientôt sur les frontières du #Monténégro et de la #Serbie

    1er juin - 8h : L’Union européenne a approuvé, mardi 26 mai, un #accord passé avec le Monténégro et la Serbie, prévoyant le déploiement de la #mission_Frontex sur les frontières de ces deux pays. Il s’agit d’aider le Monténégro et la Serbie, candidats à l’intégrer, à « mieux gérer les flux migratoires ». Le déploiement de #Frontex sera effectif dès juillet au Monténégro, tandis qu’une date doit encore être fixée pour la Serbie.

    https://www.courrierdesbalkans.fr/Les-dernieres-infos-Refugies-Balkans-Bosnie-Herzegovine-un-nouvea

    #Balkans #route_des_balkans #militarisation_des_frontières #frontières #asile #migrations #réfugiés

    –---

    Voir aussi :

    2018 :
    « Come il Montenegro si prepara a un’emergenza che non c’è »
    https://seenthis.net/messages/712376

    2019 :
    European Border and Coast Guard : Agreement reached on operational cooperation with Montenegro
    https://seenthis.net/messages/758359

    À partir de 22 mai 2019, Frontex déploiera des équipes conjointes à la frontière grecque avec des agents albanais. La Commission européenne a passé des accords semblables avec la Macédoine du Nord, la Serbie, le Monténégro et la Bosnie-Herzégovine, qui devraient également entrer en vigueur.
    https://seenthis.net/messages/782260

    ping @isskein @reka @karine4

  • RÉFUGIÉS SUR LA ROUTE DES BALKANS : LE RÈGNE DE LA VIOLENCE ET DU SILENCE

    Des exilés tués dans les camps financés par l’UE, maltraités et marqués à la peinture par la police croate, des camps de réfugiés qui ressemblent de plus en plus à des « camps de concentration »… La situation ne cesse de se détériorer tout au long de la route des Balkans. Entretien avec la journaliste Nidžara Ahmetašević.

    https://www.courrierdesbalkans.fr/Refugies-sur-la-route-des-Balkans-le-regne-de-la-violence-et-du-s

    #Covid-19 #Migration #Migrant #Balkans #camp #violencespolicières #frontière #Serbie #Bosnie-Herzégovine #Croatie

  • Info Park
    Weekly
    20 – 26 May 2020

    Serbia
    ➢ After the lockdown measures were lifted, the number of refugees and other migrants visible in the parks and streets of Savamala district has been increasing daily. Info
    Park mobile team has registered a daily average of 160 people on the move in the area, which is higher than the week before and corresponds to the numbers before
    the state of emergency. By the end of the week, police officers returned to Park Luke Celovica, commencing raids, and bringing migrants without permits to governmentrun centers to leave the camps back. Info Park registered 534 push backs from Hungary –the high number reflecting return to pre-pandemic dynamics in the border
    zone.
    ➢ Ministry of Defense published a public procurement for 2.5 tons of razor-wire intended for fencing the reception and asylum centers in Serbia. Info Park issued a press statement joined by A11 Initiative, PIN, Alternative Center for Girls and Collective Aid, calling the Ministry to immediately withdraw the public procurement
    and return its activities within their constitutional framework. Moreover, the organizations called upon the European Commission to react and inform the
    authorities in Belgrade that these actions are derogating the efforts undertaken in Serbia’s accession process towards the European Union, within chapters 23 and 24.
    Full statement is available here.
    ➢ According to Serbian media, a person from Valjevo was arrested for spreading national and racial hatred towards migrants in the text on newly established website owned by the detainee. The website article reads that a new refugee camp for 10,000 migrants will open in Valjevo should the ruling Progressives win the forthcoming
    elections.
    ➢ Belgrade Center for Human Rights issued a press statement informing the public on the inadmissible conduct of the Bogovadja Asylum Centre security guards, who verbally and physically abused an unaccompanied child accommodated there. The
    BCHR pressed criminal charges against the guards.
    ➢ The updated AIDA 2019 Country Report on Serbia documents the main developments in asylum procedures, reception conditions, detention of asylum seekers and the Covid-19 measures. Read the full country report here.

    Croatia
    ➢ Portal Novosti reported on the latest in a series of attempts of Croatian authorities to curb migration in the country. Reportedly, the Croatian state enterprise for forest management carried out deforestation on the heights of the Plješivica mountain and near the former Yugoslav National Army airport Željava, along the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Croatian police allegedly did not deny it but said they aimed to control better the entry of refugees and other migrants from BiH.

    Bosnia and Herzegovina
    ➢ During the previous week, a group of migrants accidentally initiated a fire in an abandoned hall near Miral RC in Velika Kladusa. On 18 May the special police forces
    entered the hall and used physical violence against a group of migrants found there and forced them to leave the place. The video of the incident was published on the
    YouTube. Association for Democratic Initiatives (ADI) and Civil Rights Defenders (CRD) released a joint statement and condemned the violation of human rights and
    use of violence against migrants. Afterwards the cantonal police conducted an internal investigation and concluded there was no excessive use of violence in the
    action.

    #Covid-19 #Migration #Migrant #Balkans #Bosnie-Herzégovine #Serbie #Croatie

  • [Google translate]

    RFE / RL: The Ministry of Defense is buying razor wire to fence the centers for migrants

    The Ministry of Defense of Serbia is buying almost 2.5 tons of razor wire for fencing the reception centers for the accommodation of migrants and the centers for the accommodation of asylum seekers, it is stated in the published public procurement invitation.

    According to the documentation published by the Ministry of Defense on May 15, in addition to the 700-millimeter-thick razor wire, 1,521 meters of ribbed iron in 20-millimeter-thick bars and 50 kilograms of galvanized binding wire are also subject to public procurement.

    The military post office in Kraljevo is listed as the ordering party, and the procurement is being conducted as a negotiated procedure.

    Radio Free Europe has so far not received an answer from the Ministry of Defense to the question why the razor wire is placed around the centers and exactly which centers will be fenced.

    As it is stated, due to “exceptional urgency caused by extraordinary circumstances or unforeseen events, the occurrence of which in no case depends on the will of the ordering party, the ordering party could not act within the deadlines set for open or restrictive procedure”.

    It is also added that the Army received a task that it does not normally perform in peace, and it refers to the provision of Reception Centers and Centers for Asylum of Migrants on the territory of Serbia “and according to the mentioned fact 2020”.

    The deadline for submitting the bid is, as it is pointed out, May 21.

    The documentation also states that the bidder is obliged to offer a warranty period of at least 12 months.

    The director of the Center for Protection and Assistance to Asylum Seekers, Rados Djurovic, says for RFE that it is unclear why the Serbian Army is engaged in providing asylum centers and reception centers for migrants, because it does not have the authority to do so.

    http://rs.n1info.com/Vesti/a601522/RSE-Ministarstvo-odbrane-kupuje-zilet-zicu-za-ogradjivanje-centara-za-mig

    #Covid-19 #Migration #Migrant #Balkans #Serbie #Mur #Camp

  • Call to Action: STOP FUNDING VIOLENCE NOW!

    https://transbalkanskasolidarnost.home.blog/stop-funding-violence-now

    May 27 – 29, 2020

    Transbalkan Solidarity invites you to participate in a 48-hour return-the-bullets-back protest campaign directed at the European Union and its decision-making bodies (the European Parliament, the European Council, the European Commission and the Council of the European Union), which are accountable for funding acts of systematic violence that amount to crimes against humanity.

    Why do we need to take action?

    Through the Internal Security Fund (ISF) allocated to Member States’ national programmes for law enforcement cooperation and the management of the union’s external borders, and the Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA) cross-border collaboration programmes for non-member states, European Union is responsible for committing acts of violence against peoples that are residing, settling in or migrating to Europe by land or sea.

    Acts of violence occurring daily in more or less all the current camps, police stations, courtrooms, deportation centers, prisons and border areas in Europe:

    are not isolated or sporadic events but are a part of a wide systematic practice tolerated and condoned by our governments and the European Parliament,
    are funded by public funds,
    are a stable source of profit for privately-owned companies and shareholders,
    are reinforcing the arms industry, arms trade, and war economy,
    are direct degradation of the international humanitarian and human rights law, and subsequently the derogation of the right to asylum.
    Dehumanisation, deportations, extrajudicial punishments, kidnappings and forced disappearances, imprisonment, enslavement, human trafficking, torture, rape, political repression, racial discrimination and other human rights abuses experienced by people that reached Europe as migrants and refugees are a part of a widespread and systematic practice enforced by governmental policies and are conducted by law enforcement agencies, police and military forces, private security services, criminal groups, vigilante groups, judicial systems and other governmental bodies in Europe.

    Therefore, Transbalkan Solidarity holds the European Union’s decision-making bodies together with the Member States’ and non-member states’ governments accountable for:

    every bullet fired,
    every baton injury, every dog bite wound, every painful stitch,
    every drowning in the sea and rivers, every lack of rescue, every ban of docking,
    every tragic death, every disappearance, every family separation, every pushback, every human trauma caused by hunger, thirst, humiliation, and pain,
    every illegalisation and criminalisation of human existence,
    every criminalisation of activism and solidarity,
    all the acts of violence committed in the name of racial bias and xenophobic prejudice,
    all the acts of violence committed in the name of territory governance and border management,
    all the acts of violence committed in the name of profit!
    How to participate in the campaign?

    return the bullet that killed hope back (photo attached) to the European Commission at
    Secretariat-General, Ursula von der Leyen (president):

    ec-president-vdl@ec.europa.eu

    Migration and Home Affairs, Ylva Johansson (commissioner):

    cab-johansson-contact@ec.europa.eu

    Neighbourhood and Enlargement, Olivér Várhelyi (commissioner):

    cab-varhelyi-contact@ec.europa.eu

    If you are concerned about your privacy, open a new email address.

    share the bullet that killed hope (photo attached) on your social media with hashtags
    #stopfundingviolence, #thisbulletkilledhope, #protestcampaign, #transbalkansolidarity, #europeancommission #eu

    distribute this call to action among your comrades and in your community
    return and/or share a bullet that killed hope anytime between May 27 – 29, 2020
    Take action now! Return the bullet that killed hope back to those who are funding it!

    Transbalkan Solidarity

    _

    Why do we organize this protest campaign?

    “They were just following orders” is the most common justification of violence we get, known as the Nuremberg Defense. But we are asking back: Whose orders? Whose funds?

    Who ordered the acts of violence against the kids in Bogovađa in Serbia this May, the violence against the people under protection in Obrenovac camp in Serbia and the beatings and the application of tear gas indoors in Krnjača camp in Serbia this April? Who gave orders for the urgent acquisition of razor wire for enclosing the camps in Serbia or fencing off the Porin camp in Zagreb in Croatia? Who ordered the use of lethal force of private security personnel and the consequent death of Ahmed from Kurdistan in camp Ušivak in Hadžići in Bosnia and Herzegovina in early May? Who ordered the forced transfers from camp to camp in Bosnia and Serbia? Who ordered the state-administered burning of personal possessions in Velika Kladuša in Bosnia and Herzegovina? Who ordered the access restrictions to prevent entry into the Bosnia camps that led to the tragic death of Ahmed from Morocco in Miral camp near Velika Kladuša? Who gave orders for random beatings in Miral camp this May, or regular cruelty of Croatian police and countless pushbacks, dog attacks, and injuries to the people? Who gave the order to stamp people on the move with the red cross sprayed on their heads and bodies? Who gave and funded those orders? Who ordered firearms shots at people on the move on multiple occasions, including children? Who ordered to let the dogs out? Who?

    There is no end to such horrible acts that were committed in the very short time of the Covid-19 lockdown? What fascists think and talk, the European Union’s decision-making bodies are funding and implementing, or is it the other way around? Such politics and crimes are shaping public opinion and encouraging hate speech, hate crimes, the recruitment of white supremacists and fascism. “Strike the scum, strike the animals,“ has become a normalized and widely accepted way of social commenting on every news of violence committed against the people on the move. It is those who are there to officially promote universal respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms in Europe who are committing these acts and should be held accountable.

    #Covid-19 #Migration #Migrant #Balkans #Serbie #Bosnie-Herzégovine #Croatie

  • [Google Translate]

    The Ministry of Defense of Serbia is buying razor wire for fencing the centers for migrants

    The Ministry of Defense of Serbia is buying almost 2.5 tons of razor wire for fencing the reception centers for the accommodation of migrants and the centers for the accommodation of asylum seekers, it is stated in the public procurement invitation published on the website of that institution.

    According to the documentation published by the Ministry of Defense on May 15, in addition to the 700-millimeter-thick razor wire, 1,521 meters of ribbed iron in 20-millimeter-thick bars and 50 kilograms of galvanized binding wire are also subject to public procurement.

    The military post office in Kraljevo is listed as the ordering party, and the procurement is being conducted as a negotiated procedure.

    Until the conclusion of the text, we did not receive an answer from the Ministry of Defense to the question why the razor wire is placed around the centers and exactly which centers will be fenced.

    As it is stated, due to “extraordinary urgency caused by extraordinary circumstances or unforeseen events, the occurrence of which in no case depends on the will of the ordering party, the ordering party could not act within the deadlines set for open or restrictive procedure”.

    It is also added that the Army received a task that it does not normally perform in peace, and refers to the provision of Reception Centers and Centers for Asylum of Migrants on the territory of Serbia “and according to the above fact, the possible procurement of goods could not be foreseen and planned 2020.”

    The deadline for submitting the bid is, as it is pointed out, May 21.

    The documentation also states that the bidder is obliged to offer a warranty period of at least 12 months.

    The lowest offered price was stated as a criterion for evaluation and award of the contract, and the Ministry sent an invitation to submit bids to the addresses of four companies: “Žica best” from Smederevo, “In-Sy Group” from Belgrade, “Legi sistem” from Belgrade and " Magnum Novi Sad Vebecom ”from Sremska Kamenica.

    Some of these companies, as explained on their website, already have experience in installing fencing systems on facilities of strategic importance such as border crossings and airports.

    Securing migrant centers is not the responsibility of the Army

    It is unclear why the Serbian Army is providing asylum centers and reception centers for migrants, because it does not have the authority to do so, Rados Djurovic, director of the Center for Protection and Assistance to Asylum Seekers, told Radio Free Europe (RFE). He adds that a distinction should be made between asylum centers and reception centers for migrants.

    "Asylum centers are places where people who want to seek asylum in the Republic of Serbia are accommodated. These are persons who have not violated our law in any way, nor is there any basis to restrict their movement. These are people who want the protection of the Republic of Serbia, and then there is no need to fence such camps with razor wire, "says Djurovic, adding:

    “On the other hand, if we are talking about reception centers for migrants, ie for people who do not want to seek asylum here and who would have to be in a legal procedure, then everything depends on the character of such a camp, ie the specific case of people who accommodated whether their movement should be restricted or not. That is not within the competence of the Army. Then such centers, which might serve for deportation, should be run by the Border Police together with the Commissariat for Refugees and Migration. The army has no place here according to the existing legislation.”

    There are currently five asylum centers and 14 reception centers in Serbia. The problem, according to Radoš Đurović, is that the competent institutions place people in those centers at random, and those who do not want to seek asylum remain in an unregulated legal status.

    “When people do not exist for the eyes of the system, and are placed in state institutions, then there is a doubt as to how to treat them and what are the rights and obligations that the state has,” says Djurovic.

    Raising the razor wire suggests that Serbia has taken the path of restrictions in the political sense, which Hungary has already started, where there is a similar practice of fencing camps, Rados Djurovic believes.

    "In many other countries in Europe, fencing camps in this way is a rarity, of course, depending on the character of the camp. Some deportation camps are fenced. On the other hand, asylum centers are only fenced with a simple fence. “But for the Army to provide asylum centers, that does not exist as an established practice in the developed countries of Western Europe,” Djurovic concludes.

    Use of the army during a state of emergency
    During the state of emergency in Serbia due to the corona virus, from March 15 to May 6, 2020, migrants were in 24-hour isolation for 53 days, and the facilities in which they are kept were guarded by the Serbian Army.

    According to the statement of the Commissariat for Refugees of Serbia from April 4, the measures were introduced “in order to prevent the spread of the corona virus among the migrant population”.

    After the lifting of the state of emergency, the security was taken over by the police, while the migrants were allowed to leave with the permission of the management of the centers where they are staying.

    In mid-May, the President of Serbia, Aleksandar Vučić, ordered the use of a part of the forces of the Serbian Army on the territory of the municipality of Sid in order to provide assistance to the Ministry of Internal Affairs in securing asylum centers and reception centers, the Ministry of Defense announced.

    Explaining the decision on the deployment of the army, the President of Serbia, Aleksandar Vučić, said that it was done “in accordance with the assessments of the security bodies and the requests of the citizens from the territory of the municipality of Sid.”

    Answering the question why it was necessary to send units to Sid, Vučić, as a guest on Prva TV, said that the citizens of Šid “feel unsafe”.

    The Commissariat for Refugees stated in a statement on May 16 that the army is being deployed in Sid as a precaution, and that there have been no major incidents there so far.

    Serbian Commissioner for Refugees and Migrants Vladimir Cucic said that during the state of emergency and closed borders due to the coronavirus virus epidemic, about 9,100 migrants stayed in Serbia, but that more than 1,000 of them left the country after the state of emergency was lifted.

    Increased anti-immigrant rhetoric
    On May 13, several extreme right-wing groups organized a protest in front of the Reception Center for Migrants in Obrenovac.

    According to their representatives, they gathered to support Filip Radovanović, who was remanded in custody by the Basic Court in Obrenovac for up to 30 days after he broke into the Reception Center on May 6. Radovanovic is a member of the right-wing organization Leviathan, which advocates anti-immigrant views.

    Serbian Commissioner for Refugees and Migration Vladimir Cucic told RFE / RL after the incident that he must stop sowing hatred towards migrants.

    Right-wing extremists organized protests against migrants ahead of the health crisis in several Serbian cities.

    https://www.slobodnaevropa.org/a/ministarstvo-odbrane-srbije-zica-ogradjivanje-centara-za-migrante/30623767.html

    #Covid-19 #Migration #Migrant #Balkans #Serbie #Camp #Mur #Armée #Xenophobie

  • Info Park
    Weekly
    13 – 19 May 2020

    Serbia
    ➢ On 14 May, Health Minister Zlatibor Loncar annulled the previous order that extended the lockdown for Reception and Asylum Centers in Serbia. (Official Gazette, no. 74/2020) As a result, all refugees and other migrants regained the right to freedom of movement in the country. Asylum office of the Serbian Interior Ministry will resume its operations on 1 June.
    ➢ In a stark contrast to above decision to relax the lockdown measures in all the camps, on 16 May Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic ordered Serbian Army deployment in municipality Sid with 3 centers: Adasevci, Principovac and Sid city. Apparently, the decision is made following requests from the local municipality to prevent any incidents that occurred before corona epidemics, including petty crime, burglaries and illegal entry into abandoned buildings including farms or weekend houses in the area. The units belonging to the elite 72 Brigade for Special Operations of Serbian army are deployed on the same day, guarding 3 centers and patrolling in the town.
    According to the SCRM, the migrants are allowed to leave all of these camps, however their stay outside after the 10PM curfew is not tolerated, and they are forced
    to return to the camp. Various representatives of civil society criticized this decision heavily, claiming it is connected with the campaign for general elections in Serbia set for 21 June - especially given that no incidents are reported since lifting lockdown of Sid area camps.
    Last week was marked by the swift return to “normality” regarding migrations in Serbia. Nearly 1,500 migrants managed to leave the camps since the end the state of
    emergency, despite strong SCRM efforts to slow down the outflow with the partial restriction of freedom of movement with a system of quotas (for instance, in Krnjaca AC only 5 migrants per barrack were allowed to exit the premises). According to Serbian Commissar for refugees and migrations Vladimir Cucic, Serbian ACs and
    RCs currently host 7,700 beneficiaries, with an estimation of at least 150 people on the move outside. At the peak of the state of emergency, the camps had over 9.100 accommodated people.
    ➢ Inflow of refugees and other migrants in the parks of Belgrade Savamala district is notable, with numbers rising from 120 on Wednesday to 270 on Sunday. Consequently, significant number of smugglers are also present in the area, seeking clients and brokering deals about irregular travel to the EU. As a result, there is a significant increase in attempts to cross the borders of Hungary and Romania. Push backs from Hungarian border peaked at 188 over the weekend. At the same time an apparent movement of Kurdish families is noticed towards or over the border with Romania. Read more on how the new border regime could influence people on the
    move in this Weekly’s appendix “Protection of borders in times of crisis”.
    ➢ Around 50 right-wingers, mostly members of the extremist neo-nazi Levijatan movement, gathered outside the Obrenovac RTC on 13 May to protest in support to a
    member of the organization who had forcibly driven into the camp the week before and was ordered 30-day detention.

    Croatia
    ➢ Following the reports condemning the photos of physically marked refuges in Croatia last week, the Guardian published an article about this humiliating practice. However, the Croatian Ministry of Interior denied the accusations published in the UK paper dubbing that these accusations absurd and dangerous since they are
    coming during the holy month of Ramadan.

    Greece
    ➢ The program of relocation of unaccompanied children from Greek islands to other EU countries is scheduled to continue. Portugal is set to welcome 500 boys and girls
    and dozens are ready for the relocation to Belgium. However, authorities have extended the lockdown of Greek refugee camps due to the corona virus pandemic.
    ➢ According to Alarm Phone, push-backs on the Aegean sea reportedly continued. Since early March 2020, Alarm Phone has received 28 emergency calls from the
    Aegean and in most of these cases the distress resulted from attacks on boats carried out in Greek waters by various vigilante groups.

    #Covid-19 #Migration #Migrant #Balkans #Serbie #Déconfinement #Couvre-feu #Grèce #Refoulement #Relocalisation #Enfants #Croatie #Violencespolicières #

  • Info Park
    Weekly 6 – 12 May 2020

    Serbia
    ➢ Following the global trend of relaxing COVID-19 prevention measures, Serbian Parliament annulled the 53-days long state of emergency on May 6. The “New normal” came into force for citizens on May 7 following the publishing in the Official Gazette, however it does not applied for the refugee and migrant population in Serbia. They remained locked in 20 camps as, on the same day, Minister of Health Zlatibor Lončar passed the “Order on restriction of movement at access to open spaces, reception centers for migrants and asylum centers”. The order states that “the beneficiaries of reception and asylum centers for migrants shall be prohibited to leave
    the centers. Exceptionally and in justified cases (visit to doctor, etc.), the migrants shall be allowed to leave the ACs and RCs with special and time-limited approval of the Commissariat for Refugees and Migration”. Because of the measures, Serbian army corps (that kept the camps sealed during the state of emergency) withdrew, but
    the police forces including gendarmerie came in instead, keeping the centers locked.
    ➢ The above decision was universally and widely criticized by numerous NGOs & INGOs, both publicly and unofficially, accusing Serbian authorities of expanding the scope of migrants’ discrimination already severely present during the emergency
    state. Initiative A11 and Belgrade Center for Human Rights both submitted appeals to the Constitutional Court calling for the annulation of the decree and momentary unlock of the refugee and migrant population.
    ➢ For many observers, the extension of migrants’ centers lockdown came as the State’s attempt to prevent thousands who are expected to leave the centers in a bid to reach Belgrade or North-West borders as soon as possible, but also to prevent incidents with radicalized anti-migrant groups now openly and freely calling for violence.
    However, the situation in many camps was described as “peaceful but tense”. As of May 9, SCRM staff in some of the government-run shelters started letting those accommodated in them leave the premises with a special permission, however some first runaways are also noted, both individual and in smaller groups. Apart from
    that, Serbia’s RCs and ACs did not see much change following the relaxation of measures. Most of them remain overcrowded accommodating around 9,000 asylum seekers and other migrants, including 1,179 children (617 unaccompanied boys)
    under inadequate guardianship. During last week, Subotica RC was restored under the SCRM management and currently serves 209 single men, including those who are pushed back from the borders. The number of pushbacks from Hungary jumped to 48 for one-week time, ranging from 3 to 12 per day compared to previous weeks
    when there were no recorded attempts to cross the Hungarian border
    ➢ The culmination of migrant-scapegoating in Serbia occurred last week with an incident in Obrenovac RC when a local man broke into the camp with his car. During the outburst of ethnic hate and islamophobia, the perpetrator filmed himself live on You Tube in a manner of New Zealand mosque mass killer Brenton Tarrant. He was
    detained for 48 hours and released with a mild charge. An employee of the city Info Park Weekly 06-12 May 2020 3
    council, he is close to the ruling party, currently a member of an extremist movement “Levijatan”. He stated he was inspired by fake news coming from Facebook group called “Stop the settling of migrants” mostly posting fake or outdated news.
    Moreover, over the weekend, another extremist groups lead by “People’s patrols”
    protested in Belgrade downtown against migrant “invasion”, vaccination, and 5G
    network under the slogan “We won’t give away Serbia” (Ne damo Srbiju). Last but not least, other right wing groups lead by “Levijatan” are scheduled to hold an antimigrant rally at the gates of Obrenovac RC on Wednesday May 13. Numerous, nonrestricted extremists’ events in Serbia can only be understood as an acceleration of
    right-wing campaign for general elections set for June 21

    Croatia
    ➢ Despite the coronavirus pandemic, Croatian border police continued with illegal expulsion of asylum seekers from the Croatian territory. This well-coordinated practice reached new, unprecedented proportions last week. Namely, according to the latest testimonies and photos, the police have been humiliating people by physically marking them with an orange cross sprayed all over their heads.

    Greece
    ➢ Border Violence Monitoring Network, BVMN, has released firsthand testimony and photographic evidence indicating the existence of violent collective expulsions of migrants including robbery, beatings with the use of batons and tasers, and stripping of clothes. Within six weeks the network has collected reports of 194 people removed
    and pushed back into Turkey from the camp in Diavata and the Drama Paranesti preremoval detention center.
    ➢ The Greek government continued denying the claims coming from the German paper Der Spiegel according to which a Pakistani national had been shot dead, possibly by Greek soldiers, while attempting to cross from Turkey into Greece two months ago.

    #Covid-19 #Migration #Migrant #Balkans #Serbie #Croatie #Grèce #Déconfinement #Xénophobie #Refoulement #Violence #Expulsions

  • La #Serbie envoie l’#armée à #Šid

    L’armée serbe est intervenue samedi soir à Šid, près de la frontière croate, pour contrôler à titre préventif trois centres d’accueil, #Adaševci, #Principovac et #Šid-Stanica, où se trouvent un peu moins 2000 réfugiés. Au cours de la nuit, 18 personnes ont été arrêtées et renvoyées vers les centres, a déclaré à la RTS le maire de Šid, Zoran Semenović. Le Président Aleksandar Vučić a ordonné le recours à une partie des forces armées afin d’aider le ministère de l’Intérieur à sécuriser les centres d’asile et d’accueil.

    https://www.courrierdesbalkans.fr/Les-dernieres-infos-Refugies-Balkans-Bosnie-Herzegovine-un-nouvea
    #Sid #militarisation_des_frontières #route_des_balkans #Balkans #réfugiés #frontières #migrations #Croatie #sécurisation (sic) #sécurité #centres_d'accueil #Adasevci #Sid-Stanica #camps #camps_de_réfugiés

  • Special Report: #COVID-19 and Border Violence along the Balkan Route

    The #Border_Violence_Monitoring_Network are publishing a feature report on the intersection of the current health crisis and border management. This new report shares first hand testimony of people-on-the-move who are experiencing the COVID-19 lockdown in transit. Its scope looks at the way restrictive measures disproportionately affect vulnerable persons in camps and at borders. Further, analysis of various countries from the region shows how COVID-19 measures have also been utilised to shape and erode the fundamental rights of these communities. Approaching the topic of COVID-19 as a period used to stage rights suspensions, some of the developments explored in this report include:

    –The deployment of military forces at borders and camps is a core feature of the securitised response to COVID-19. This was seen with proposals made by the Slovenian government to increase the army’s remit in the border area and the garrisoning of camps in Serbia.

    –The development of pushback practice in countries such as Croatia has shown a disturbing turn. Augmentation of border violence as a result of the pandemic appeared with the crude paint tagging of transit groups near Velika Kladusa. Meanwhile two officers actively involved in pushbacks in the Topusko area were tested positive for COVID-19, putting people-on-the-move at direct risk of contracting the virus at the hand of perpetrating officers..

    –Collective expulsions from camps has rapidly become a new concern for people in centres in Greece and Serbia. The lockdown measures were used on multiple occasions as an excuse to perform large scale pushbacks from inner city camps and centres hosting asylum seekers.

    –Inadequate accommodation facilities are an ongoing concern for transit groups denied the basic means to exercise relevant health protocols. Across the Balkan Route and Greece, the sealing of centres marked disproportionate deprivations of liberty and wilful neglect of hygienic standards by states and the European Union.

    https://www.borderviolence.eu/special-report-covid-19-and-border-violence-along-the-balkan-route
    #violence #frontières #Balkans #route_des_Balkans #migrations #asile #réfugiés #violent_borders #violence_aux_frontières #rapport #armée #militarisation_des_frontières #Serbie #Slovénie #push-back #push-backs #refoulement #refoulements #Velika_Kladusa #Topusko #Grèce #confinement #camps_de_réfugiés #hébergement

    ping @luciebacon