• #Kythira, October 5, 2023: A trip back to the EU border where many lost their loved ones a year ago.

    They wanted to thank the local people of Kythira who, without thinking of the danger to their own lives, rescued a total of 80 people on October 5, 2022.
    People who otherwise would certainly not be alive. Together, some survivors and family members came together to hold a memorial ceremony on the beach of Diakofti, the place where the night of 5.10.2022 will remain forever present for all.

    “October 05 remains an indelible date for all of us. That night two boats capsized in Greece waters, one of them just off the island of Kythira. The people on the boats were fleeing war and terror – filled with longing for a safe future. Here in this place, very close to the harbor, the boat crashed into a rockface. The wind was strong, the waves high, and it was night. Many inhabitants of the island came and tried to save the people by any means possible. They saved 80 people with their efforts. However, at least 15 people lost their lives that night.

    When the tragedy became known to the relatives of those onboard, those who could made their way to Kythira. In this time of shock and loss, survivors and relatives met there, as well as initiatives in solidarity and people willing to help.
    Some of the dead could be found in the water. They were identified, transported to Kalamatas hospital, and then buried in Komotini. Others are still missing a year later. The survivors have been housed in inhumane camps and are fighting for their residence permits to live safe life.

    Since October 2022, we – some of the survivors and relatives remained in contact. In March 2023, we remembered what happened in #Erfurt with an evening called “#A_Sea_Full_of_Tears.” More than 200 people created space for mourning, pain and remembrance, but also for courage and hope. It was
    possible to feel the presence of those who are no longer with us. In this touching atmosphere, the idea of returning to Kythira became more concrete.

    We gathered here in Kythira with everyone to mourn and commemorate the lost. We keep alive the memory of the people who died in the sea. We also come angry at the European borders that killed them, and continue to kill. We come with the desire to build another future in solidarity and without
    borders. It is our resistance.”

    At the beginning of the Memorial, Shuja and Sultana told the story of how we all came together and introduced the speeches of the survivors and family members.
    Khadijah, who lost her dearest husband Abdul Wase Ahmadi that night, began by expressing her discomfort. She said,
    “I stand here wanting to tell you so many words. But the waves behind me make me sad and I can’t find
    the words. The last words from my husband were: who will save us here? You came and saved us, endangering your own lives. We are here to thank you. To embrace you. We are a family now. We will never forget you. Thank you!”

    Zameer, who lost his mother, sister, and brother, stood with his back to the
    sea, which became their graves:
    “I lost my whole family here, in this sea, but you saved me. I wanted to say thank you. When I leave Kythira, I will be leaving my family here with you. Please take care of them.”

    With the heartbreaking statements from the survivors, more than 100 people came to commemorate that night and the dead together with them. The ceremony on 5.10.23 was touching.
    In the days before the Memorial, the 25 travellers to Kythira, including 12 survivors and family members of missing people and their supporters from Hamburg, Erfurt, Munich, and Athens, among others, had daily conversations and meetings with the people who saved them that night:

    There was Dimitris, who took his uncle’s crane and stood on the edge of the abyss with it, saving Khadijah, Hussein, Masih and many others from certain
    Kostas, who also played the clarinet at the Memorial, who with others were able to pull up many people with ropes, their strength coming from their hands and will power.
    The vice mayor and volunteer firefighter who unobtrusively made everything
    possible everywhere.

    The firefighter Spyros, who with two of his colleagues, rappelled down the dangerous slope with his private equipment to give instructions to people how to be pulled up with the rope.
    Everyone who spent the next few days cooking, bringing clothes, healing wounds, comforting worries, answering questions for the survivors and for the many relatives who immediately came from abroad. They were comforted in their difficult time and helped through the bureaucracy.
    Many of the survivors who could not travel with us listened to a live stream on October 5 and were thus also present. Some had written their own speeches and sent voice messages.

    An elderly lady in black sat on a chair on the beach for the whole two hours and listened attentively as all the speeches in Dari were translated into German and Greek. Four coast guard officers, a priest, a teacher with his little students, many of the people who supported the days with whatever
    they had – all could not believe that the people had come back, had the strength to return to Kythira and embraced them even more in their hearts.

    The day before the Memorial, the survivors had invited all those who had saved them to an Afghan meal in Karavas. It is a beautiful village in the island’s north with a valley, a river and a spring named Amir Ali. Here, in this sheltered place, many were able to embrace and share stories and pain for
    the first time. Many of the locals said that they do not talk to anyone about this night, they do not want to burden anyone in their families, but constantly the images flash in their minds. Now through this trip they had finally found others again with whom they can share the painful experiences.

    “I don’t take off my sunglasses and you understand why,” said Giannis.
    And the other Giannis, the cook who after rescuing people still opened the kitchen of his restaurant and cooked whatever he had so that the survivors would have something to eat says: “Solidarity is a big cooking pot. Allilegii ine ena tsoukali.”

    We promise to never forget those who lost their lives on these borders. We think always of those in Lampedusa and so many other places who are thinking of their loved ones whose lives ended at these deadly borders. We have paused for a moment and now we will move forward together. To tear down the borders and build another world of welcome.


    #mémoire #commémoration #Grèce #naufrage #migrations #réfugiés #mourir_aux_frontières #morts_aux_frontières #5_octobre_2022 #ceux_qui_restent #survivants #deuil #courage #espoir #colère #résistance #frontières #mémorial #solidarité

  • [36] Un jour, une archive – 4 août : J’étais là-bas


    Anne Kelly Knowles et Levi Westerveld

    Comment situer dans l’espace et visualiser l’expérience personnelle des victimes de la Shoah ? En traitant les lieux et déplacements dans leur relations topologiques et en matérialisant graphiquement la dimension subjective et émotionnelle des évènements, il est possible de dessiner la géographie de cette mémoire particulière.

  • Grèce : au moins 78 morts dans un naufrage, le plus meurtrier de l’année dans le pays

    Au moins 78 migrants se sont noyés mercredi dans le naufrage de leur embarcation en mer méditerranée, dans le sud-ouest de la Grèce, tandis que 104 ont pu être secourus par les garde-côtes grecs. Selon des médias locaux, le bateau transportait au moins 600 personnes. Les recherches se poursuivaient mercredi pour tenter de retrouver d’autres survivants. Il s’agit du naufrage le plus meurtrier de l’année en Grèce.

    Au moins 78 personnes ont trouvé la mort dans un naufrage dans la nuit de mardi 13 à mercredi 14 juin au large de la Grèce. Quelques 104 naufragés ont pu être secourus par les garde-côtes grecs et transférés vers la ville de Kalamata, un port situé au sud ouest du pays.

    Les chaînes de télévision grecques ont montré les images de rescapés, couvertures grises sur les épaules et masques hygiéniques sur le visage, descendre d’un yacht portant l’inscription Georgetown, la capitale des îles Caïmans. D’autres étaient évacués sur des civières. Quatre d’entre eux ont été conduits à l’hôpital de Kalamata en raison de symptômes d’hypothermie.

    D’après les informations délivrées par les autorités grecques, les exilés sont majoritairement originaires d’Égypte, de Syrie et du Pakistan. Selon les premières informations, le bateau aurait quitté Tobrouk, à l’est de la Libye, en direction de l’Italie, vendredi 9 juin.

    600 migrants à bord du bateau

    Le nombre de passagers présents sur le bateau n’a pas été confirmé par les autorités grecques. Mais des médias locaux parlent d’au moins 600 personnes, ce qui laisse craindre la disparition de centaines de naufragés.

    L’opération de sauvetage se poursuivait mercredi après-midi dans les eaux internationales situées au large de la ville grecque de Pylos. Elle implique six navires des garde-côtes, un avion et un hélicoptère militaires ainsi qu’un drone de Frontex, l’agence européenne de surveillance des frontières.


    La Grèce a connu de nombreux naufrages d’embarcations de migrants, souvent vétustes et surchargées, mais il s’agit jusqu’ici du bilan humain le plus lourd depuis un précédent le 3 juin 2016 au cours duquel au moins 320 personnes avaient péri ou disparu.

    L’embarcation avait été repérée une première fois mardi par les garde-côtes italiens, qui ont alerté leurs homologues grecs et européens. Les migrants à bord « ont refusé toute aide », selon les autorités grecques. La plateforme d’aide aux migrants en mer, Alarm Phone, a signalé sur Twitter avoir été alertée le même jour par des exilés en détresse, non loin du lieu du naufrage.

    Selon une journaliste basée en Grèce, chaque passager avait payé 4 500 dollars (environ 4 000 euros) la traversée.

    Une année particulièrement meurtrière

    Depuis un an, on observe de plus en plus de départs de bateaux de migrants depuis l’est de la Libye. « Ce n’est pas inhabituel que des bateaux fassent cette route. Les départs depuis l’est de la Libye sont plus fréquents » depuis l’été dernier, expliquait l’an dernier à InfoMigrants Frederico Soda, chef de mission Libye auprès de l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations (OIM). Les exilés prennent désormais la mer depuis cette zone, afin d’éviter les interceptions des garde-côtes libyens, qui se concentrent à l’ouest du pays.

    Mais la traversée n’est pas sans risque. L’est de la Libye est considérablement plus éloigné de l’Italie que la partie ouest, d’où embarquent la majorité des migrants. À titre d’exemple, 1 200 km séparent les deux villes côtières de Tobrouk (à l’Est) et Tripoli (à l’Ouest), situé en-dessous de la Sicile. Un trajet démarré depuis l’est de la Libye est ainsi « beaucoup plus long », précisait encore Federico Soda.

    La route méditerranéenne reste la plus meurtrière au monde. En 2022, 2 406 migrants ont péri dans cette zone maritime, soit une augmentation de 16% sur un an, selon le dernier rapport de l’OIM. Et l’année 2023 risque d’établir un nouveau record : depuis janvier, ce sont déjà 1 166 personnes qui ont péri ou ont disparu dans ces eaux, dont 1030 en Méditerranée centrale. Un tel nombre n’avait pas été observé depuis 2017.

    #Pylos #Grèce #naufrage #asile #migrations #décès #morts #tragédie #mourir_aux_frontières #morts_aux_frontières #14_juin_2023 #Méditerranée #Mer_Méditerranée #13_juin_2023

    • Après le naufrage en Grèce, les autorités grecques et européennes sous le feu des critiques

      À la suite de l’annonce de la disparition de plusieurs centaines de personnes dans un naufrage survenu mercredi au large de la Grèce, des dirigeants européens ont fait part de leurs condoléances. Ils ont reçu de nombreuses critiques condamnant les politiques migratoires européennes.

      C’est sans doute le naufrage le plus meurtrier depuis 2013. Mercredi 14 juin, vers 2h du matin, un bateau surchargé de migrants a fait naufrage au large de Pylos, dans le sud-ouest de la Grèce. Au moins 78 personnes sont mortes dans le drame et des centaines d’autres sont toujours portées disparues. Selon les témoignages des rescapés, qui ont donné des chiffres différents, entre 400 et 750 exilés se trouvaient sur le bateau parti de Tobrouk, dans l’est de la Libye.

      À la suite de ce drame, de nombreuses personnalités politiques grecques et européennes ont exprimé leur émotion sur les réseaux sociaux. La présidente de la Commission européenne Ursula von der Leyen s’est dit « profondément attristée par la nouvelle du naufrage au large des côtes grecques et par les nombreux décès signalés ». « Nous devons continuer à travailler ensemble, avec les États membres et les pays tiers, pour éviter de telles tragédies », a-t-elle ajouté.

      Ylva Johansson, commissaire européenne aux Affaires intérieures, s’est quant à elle dit « profondément affectée par cette tragédie meurtrière au large des côtes grecques ». « Nous avons le devoir moral collectif de démanteler les réseaux criminels. La meilleure façon d’assurer la sécurité des migrants est d’empêcher ces voyages catastrophiques... », a également indiqué la responsable.

      Les messages de soutien des deux dirigeantes ont entraîné de très nombreuses critiques d’internautes. Des défenseurs des droits des migrants, avocats et journalistes ont notamment dénoncé le « cynisme » des autorités européennes, les accusant de promouvoir une politique migratoire européenne dure.

      « Vies innocentes »

      La classe politique grecque a également réagi au drame. En campagne électorale en vue des législatives du 25 juin, l’ancien Premier ministre conservateur, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, a décidé d’annuler un rassemblement électoral prévu pour la fin de journée à Patras, le grand port de cette région du Péloponnèse, a annoncé son parti Nouvelle Démocratie (ND).

      « Nous sommes tous choqués par le tragique naufrage survenu aujourd’hui dans les eaux internationales de la Méditerranée, au sud-ouest du Péloponnèse. Je suis attristé par la perte de tant de vies innocentes », a-t-il déclaré sur Twitter.

      Ce responsable politique s’est par ailleurs entretenu au téléphone avec le Premier ministre par intérim, Ioannis Sarmas. Il a également décrété trois jours de deuil dans le pays.

      Sur les réseaux sociaux, l’ancien Premier ministre n’a pas non plus été épargné par des internautes l’accusant d’hypocrisie face au drame de Pylos. Le dirigeant a mené une politique très dure envers les exilés durant ses quatre années à la tête du gouvernement. Athènes a été à de très nombreuses reprises accusée de pratiquer des refoulements illégaux de migrants en mer Égée et dans la région de l’Evros.
      Des bateaux escortés hors des SAR zones

      De nombreux membres d’organisations internationales ont également réagi au drame de Pylos. Vincent Cochetel, envoyé spécial du Haut-commissariat des nations unies aux réfugiés (HCR), en charge de la Méditerranée de l’ouest et centrale s’est dit « très attristé par cette nouvelle tragédie ». Le responsable a également confié son inquiétude « de voir ces derniers mois certains États côtiers escorter des bateaux en mauvais état en dehors de leur zone SAR pour s’assurer qu’ils atteignent d’autres zones SAR ».

      De son côté, Federico Soda, directeur du département des urgences à l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations (OIM), a plaidé pour la mise en place de « mesures concrètes pour donner la priorité à la recherche et au sauvetage » et de « voies d’accès sûres pour les migrants ».

      L’agence européenne de surveillance des frontières (Frontex) s’est, quant à elle, déclarée « profondément touchée » par le drame. Dans le même message posté sur Twitter, l’agence assure que son avion de surveillance a repéré le bateau le mardi 13 juin au matin et affirme avoir « immédiatement informé les autorités compétentes ».

      Selon les autorités portuaires grecques, un avion de surveillance de Frontex avait effectivement vu le bateau mardi mais il n’est pas intervenu car les passagers ont « refusé toute aide ».

      Les ONG actives dans l’aide aux exilés ont également fait part de leur effroi face au drame de Pylos. Interrogé par Libération, le président de SOS Méditerranée France, François Thomas, a condamné une « nouvelle tragédie insupportable ». « Il n’existe aucune solidarité européenne. Les moyens de sauvetage sont de moins en moins importants, alors que l’Europe a des moyens. Quand est-ce que tout cela va s’arrêter ? », a-t-il dénoncé.

      Médecins sans frontières (MSF), qui intervient en Méditerranée centrale avec son navire humanitaire le Geo barents , a déclaré être « attristé et choqué » par le drame survenu mercredi. L’ONG précise que ses équipes en Grèce se tiennent prêtes à intervenir pour aider autant que possible les rescapés.

      Enquête ouverte

      Enfin, le pape François, très sensible à la thématique migratoire, est « profondément consterné » par le naufrage, a rapporté jeudi le Vatican dans un communiqué.

      « Sa sainteté le pape François envoie ses prières sincères pour les nombreux migrants qui sont morts, leurs proches et tous ceux qui ont été traumatisés par cette tragédie », peut-on lire dans un télégramme signé par le N.2 du Saint-Siège, le cardinal Pietro Parolin, et publié par le Vatican.

      Les opérations de secours se poursuivaient jeudi matin pour tenter de retrouver des survivants. Des moyens aériens et maritimes sont déployés mais les espoirs s’amenuisent à mesure que le temps passe. Jusqu’à présent, 104 personnes ont pu être secourues mais Athènes redoute que des centaines d’autres ne soient portées disparues, d’après les témoignages des survivants.

      Une enquête a été ouverte par la justice grecque sur le sauvetage de l’embarcation. La Cour suprême grecque a également ordonné une enquête pour définir les causes du drame qui a choqué le pays.


    • “They are urgently asking for help”: the SOS that was ignored

      The Hellenic Coast Guard attributed its failure to proceed to a rescue mission of the migrants before their trawler sunk to their refusal to receive assistance. International law experts, as well as active and former Coast Guard officials, refute the argument. And emails sent by the Alarm Phone group to authorities which are in Solomon’s possession, prove that the passengers of the vessel had sent out an SOS – one that was ignored.

      The first recovered bodies of the people who lost their lives 80 km southwest of Pylos between the 13th and 14th of June are transferred to the cemetery of Schisto. At least 78 dead and hundreds remain missing. 104 people have been rescued so far, while the search for survivors continues.

      But critical questions about possible mishandling by the Hellenic Coast Guard of the tragedy that led to the deadliest shipwreck recorded in recent years in the Mediterranean remain.

      The same goes for the responsibilities of Greece and Europe, whose policies have diverted asylum seekers to the deadly Calabria route, which bypasses Greece (for obvious reasons), while also failing to establish legal and safe routes.
      “Denied assistance“

      In the briefings and timeline of the events leading up to the tragedy, the HCG attributes the failure to rescue the migrants before the sinking of the fishing boat to their repeated “refusal to receive assistance” in their communications with the vessel.

      The HCG had been aware of the vessel since the early morning hours of Tuesday, 13/6, and was, according to its own log, in contact with the vessel from as early as 14:00 local time. But no rescue action was undertaken, because “the trawler did not request any assistance from the Coast Guard or Greece,” the HCG reported.

      The same argument is repeated at 18:00: “Repeatedly the fishing boat was asked by the merchant ship if it required additional assistance, was in danger or wanted anything else from Greece. They replied, “we want nothing more than to continue to Italy”.

      But does this absolve the Coast Guard of responsibility?

      International law experts as well as former and active members of the Coast Guard question the legal and humanitarian basis of this argument, even if there was indeed a “refusal of assistance”. And they point out to Solomon that the rescue operation should have begun immediately upon detection of the fishing vessel. For the following reasons, among others:

      - The vessel was obviously overloaded and unseaworthy, with the lives of the peopled on board, who did not even have life-saving equipment, being in constant danger.

      – Accepting a denial of rescue or other intervention by the HCG could make sense only if the vessel carried a state flag, had proper documents, had a proper captain and was safe. None of these applies in the case of the sunk trawler.

      - Coast Guard officials had to objectively assess the situation and take the necessary actions regardless of how the passengers of the trawler – or, to be precise, whoever the Coast Guard was in contact with- themselves assessed their own situation.

      - The fishing vessel was undoubtedly in a state of distress that mandated its rescue at the latest from the moment the Coast Guard received, through Alarm Phone, an SOS message, which was transmitted to the group by the passengers. This SOS call is not mentioned anywhere in the Coast Guard’s communications.

      Proof the Coast Guard knew of the danger

      In its own chronology of events, Watch the Med-Alarm Phone says it contacted the authorities at 17:53 local GR time.

      The email to the competent authorities, which is available to Solomon, indicates the coordinates where the overloaded vessel was located. It states that there are 750 people on board, including many women and children, and includes a telephone number for contacting the passengers themselves.

      “They are urgently asking for help,” the email reads.

      From this message, it follows also that FRONTEX, the HQ of the Greek Police and the Ministry of Citizen Protection, as well as the Coast Guard in Kalamata, were also informed.

      The message was also communicated to the UNCHR in Greece and Turkey, to NATO, as well as to Greece’s Ombudsman.

      Listen to the interview given to Solomon by Maro, an Alarm Phone member:


      Solomon contacted the Hellenic Coast Guard, asking detailed questions: why was there no rescue operation after the migrants’ distress signal via Alarm Phone? Does a refusal to rescue exculpate the HCG? Why was the vessel (for security and identification purposes) not even checked, given it was not flying a flag? Why was the operation launched only after the vessel sank?

      A spokesman for the HCG did not answer the specific questions but instead referred to the Coast Guard’s press release.

      Solomon also contacted UNHCR, which confirmed receipt of the email.

      “Our Office was indeed notified yesterday (ed. note: 13/06) afternoon in correspondence received from Watch The Med – Alarm Phone, which referred to a vessel in distress southwest of the Peloponnese with a large number of passengers. We immediately informed the competent Greek authorities requesting urgent information about the coordination of a search and rescue operation to bring the people to safety”.

      “Please be informed that Frontex has immediately relayed the message to the Greek authorities,” Frontex responded to Alarm Phone’s message, in an email seen by Solomon.

      “Duty of rescue, not stand by and watch”

      The Coast Guard had to treat the incident as a vessel in distress from the very first moment and take all measures to rescue the people, explains Nora Markard, Professor of International Public Law and International Human Rights at the University of Münster.

      “As soon as the distress call was received via Alarm Phone, there was clearly distress. But when a ship is so evidently overloaded, it is in distress as soon as it leaves port, because it is unseaworthy. Even if the ship is still moving. And when there is distress, there is a duty to rescue, not to stand by and watch.

      International law defines distress as a situation where there is a reasonable certainty that a vessel or a person is threatened by grave and imminent danger and requires immediate assistance.

      “That requires an objective assessment. If a captain completely misjudges the situation and says the ship is fine, the ship is still in distress if the passengers are in grave danger by the condition of the ship,” Dr. Markard explains.

      International law unambiguously states that, on receiving information ‘from any source’ that persons are in distress at sea, the master of a ship that is in a position to render assistance must ‘proceed with all speed to their assistance’.

      In this particular case, the fishing vessel was not flying a flag, so the incident does not even fall under the category of respect for the sovereignty of the flag state.

      “When a ship doesn’t fly a flag at all, as it appears to be the case here, the law of the sea gives other states a right to visit the ship. This includes the right to board the ship to check it out,” says Markard.

      Apart from the distress call itself, the Hellenic Coast Guard, therefore, had the additional authority to examine the situation.

      “All ships and authorities alerted of the distress have an obligation to rescue, even if the ship in distress is not in their territorial waters but at high sea. Search and rescue zones often include waters that belong to the high sea,” explains Markard.

      “If the distress occurs in a state’s search and rescue zone, that state also has an obligation to coordinate the rescue. For example, it can requisition merchant ships to render assistance.”
      Coast Guard officer: “This was the definition of a vessel in distress”

      A former senior officer of the Greek Coast Guard with vast relevant experience seconds this and raises additional questions.

      Speaking to Solomon on condition of anonymity, he explained that the vessel was manifestly unseaworthy and the people on board in danger. Even a refusal to accept assistance was not a reason to leave it to its fate.

      The same official also points out there were delays in the response of the HCG (“valuable time was lost”) and an inadequate force of assets. He confirmed that refusal of assistance would only make sense in the case of a legal, documented, seaworthy and flagged vessel. “This was the definition of a vessel in distress”.

      Similar statements regarding the claims of the Greek Coast Guard were made by retired admiral of the Coast Guard and international expert, Nikos Spanos, to Greece’s public broadcaster ERT:

      “It’s like saying I can just watch you drown and do nothing. We don’t ask the crew on a boat in distress if they need help. They absolutely need help, from the moment the boat is adrift.”


    • Chi c’era a bordo della barca naufragata al largo della Grecia

      Moshin Shazad, 32 anni, era un uomo con l’espressione seria, due figli piccoli, la moglie e la madre da mantenere. Per questo aveva deciso di partire da Lalamusa, una città nel Punjab, in Pakistan. Non riusciva a trovare un lavoro stabile e le bocche da sfamare erano diventate troppe, dopo la nascita del secondo figlio. Voleva raggiungere il cugino, Waheed Ali, che dal 2019 vive in Norvegia.

      È partito con altri quattro ragazzi, quattro amici, tra cui Abdul Khaliq e Sami Ullah. Ha telefonato al cugino poco dopo essere salito sul peschereccio stracarico che è partito da Tobruk, in Libia, ed è naufragato il 14 giugno, a 47 miglia da Pylos, in Grecia. “Diceva che sarebbe arrivato in Italia”, racconta Waheed Ali, che ora sta cercando il cugino tra i 108 sopravvissuti, di cui molti sono stati sistemati in un magazzino abbandonato di Kalamata, in Grecia, mentre una trentina sono stati trasferiti in ospedale. Molti erano in ipotermia. Ma Shazad potrebbe anche essere tra i dispersi.

      Shawq Muhammad al Ghazali, 22 anni, era uno studente originario di Daraa, in Siria, ed era rifugiato in Giordania, dove al momento vivono la sua famiglia e suo zio Ibhraim al Ghazali. Il ragazzo era partito da Amman per la Libia, e da lì, da Tobruk, si era imbarcato per raggiungere l’Europa. “Non ho sue notizie dall’8 giugno, il giorno della partenza dalla Libia”, dice lo zio. Secondo molti familiari, le autorità greche non stanno aiutando le famiglie ad avere notizie dei parenti o a capire se sono tra i vivi o tra i dispersi.

      I superstiti sono per lo più siriani (47) ed egiziani (43), poi ci sono dodici pachistani e due palestinesi, secondo le autorità greche. Tutti uomini. “Non riesco a sapere se è sopravvissuto, sono io che sto dando notizie alla famiglia in Pakistan, ma sono disperato, non riesco a capire e a sapere nulla. Del naufragio ho saputo dalla televisione”, afferma Waheed Ali.

      L’imbarcazione su cui viaggiavano Moshin Shazad e gli altri era partita da Tobruk l’8 giugno, era diretta in Italia, lungo una rotta da cui sono arrivati nel 2023 la metà dei migranti partiti dalla Libia.

      “Secondo le prime testimonianze sarebbe corretta la stima di 700-750 persone a bordo, tra cui almeno quaranta bambini, che probabilmente erano nella stiva. Se questi numeri fossero confermati, si tratterebbe del secondo naufragio più grave avvenuto nel Mediterraneo dopo quello dell’aprile 2015”, racconta Flavio Di Giacomo, dell’Organizzazione internazionale per le migrazioni (Oim). Settantotto corpi sono stati recuperati finora in mare al largo della penisola del Peloponneso. Ma l’Oim ha affermato di “temere che altre centinaia di persone” siano annegate. Il portavoce della guardia costiera greca Nikos Alexiou ha detto che l’imbarcazione è naufragata, dopo che le persone si sono spostate bruscamente su un lato. L’imbarcazione è affondata in quindici minuti.

      Frontex li aveva avvistati
      Secondo le autorità greche, un aereo di sorveglianza dell’agenzia europea Frontex aveva avvistato la barca il 13 giugno. In un comunicato Frontex ha confermato di avere visto l’imbarcazione in mattinata, alle 9.47 del giorno precedente al naufragio e di averlo comunicato alle autorità preposte al soccorso, cioè alla guardia costiera greca. Anche la guardia costiera italiana e due mercantili avevano segnalato alle autorità greche l’imbarcazione in difficoltà. Ma secondo la guardia costiera greca, i passeggeri dell’imbarcazione “hanno rifiutato qualsiasi aiuto”, perché i migranti si stavano dirigendo verso l’Italia.

      “Nel pomeriggio, una nave mercantile si è avvicinata alla barca e le ha fornito cibo e rifornimenti, mentre i (passeggeri) hanno rifiutato ogni ulteriore assistenza”, ha detto la guardia costiera greca in un comunicato. Una seconda nave mercantile in seguito ha offerto più rifornimenti e assistenza. Ma anche questa volta sono stati rifiutati, secondo i greci.

      In serata, una motovedetta della guardia costiera ha raggiunto la nave “e ha confermato la presenza di un gran numero di migranti sul ponte”, è scritto nel comunicato delle autorità greche. “Ma hanno rifiutato qualsiasi assistenza e hanno detto che volevano continuare in Italia”. Tuttavia le leggi internazionali sul soccorso in mare avrebbero imposto in ogni caso ai greci di intervenire per le condizioni in cui l’imbarcazione stava navigando. Diverse testimonianze contestano la versione delle autorità greche.

      Il motore della barca si è rotto poco prima delle 23 (gmt) del 13 giugno, da quel momento la barca è andata alla deriva. I naufraghi hanno chiesto aiuto, telefonando alla rete di volontari Alarmphone, già dal 13 giugno, dicendo di avere contattato anche “la polizia”. L’attivista Nawal Soufi, che vive in Italia, ha raccontato che i migranti con cui era in contatto telefonico le hanno detto che alcune imbarcazioni si sono avvicinate, distribuendo delle bottigliette di acqua.

      “Il 13 giugno 2023, nelle prime ore del mattino, i migranti a bordo di una barca carica di 750 persone mi hanno contattata comunicandomi la loro difficile situazione. Dopo cinque giorni di viaggio, l’acqua era finita, il conducente dell’imbarcazione li aveva abbandonati in mare aperto e c’erano anche sei cadaveri a bordo. Non sapevano esattamente dove si trovassero, ma grazie alla posizione istantanea del telefono Turaya (telefono satellitare, ndr), ho potuto ottenere la loro posizione esatta e ho allertato le autorità competenti”, scrive Soufi, condividendo la sua ricostruzione su Facebook.

      “La situazione si è complicata quando una nave si è avvicinata all’imbarcazione, legandola con delle corde su due punti della barca e iniziando a buttare bottiglie d’acqua. I migranti si sono sentiti in forte pericolo, poiché temevano che le corde potessero far capovolgere la barca e che le risse a bordo per ottenere l’acqua potessero causare il naufragio. Per questo motivo, si sono leggermente allontanati dalla nave per evitare un naufragio sicuro”, continua l’attivista nel suo post.

      “Durante la notte, la situazione a bordo dell’imbarcazione è diventata ancora più drammatica. Io sono rimasta in contatto con loro fino alle 23 ore greche, cercando di rassicurarli e di aiutarli a trovare una soluzione”. Fino all’ultima chiamata in cui “l’uomo con cui parlavo mi ha espressamente detto: ‘Sento che questa sarà la nostra ultima notte in vita’”, conclude. Il parlamentare greco Kriton Arsenis, che ha parlato con i sopravvissuti a Kalamata, ha confermato la versione dell’attivista Soufi e ha dichiarato che l’imbarcazione si è ribaltata dopo essere stata trainata con delle corde dai greci. Secondo Arsenis, i greci volevano spingere l’imbarcazione di migranti nelle acque di ricerca e soccorso italiane.


    • Grecia, strage di Pylos. «Nessuna pace per gli assassini»

      Mentre il mare inghiotte i corpi e lo Stato rinchiude i sopravvissuti si riempiono le strade delle città greche

      Da tempo, definiamo la politica migratoria europea “necropolitica”, ovvero – seguendo Achille Mbembe – una politica che crea le condizioni strutturali per produrre la morte di un gruppo di persone.

      Un’architettura di morte, che vediamo ogni giorno nel regime europeo del confine, sempre più legale, sofisticata, diffusa. Ci accorgiamo ora che ci hanno tolto anche la morte, nel senso che personalmente e collettivamente – noi “vivi” – le diamo, facendo esperienza di quella degli altri, vicini e lontani. Ci hanno tolto anche la morte perché hanno tolto il lutto a chi ha perso una persona cara, la possibilità di piangere un corpo morto, la possibilità di conoscerne il nome, di sapere chi, dove, quando, quanti.

      Probabilmente non sapremo mai quante persone sono affogate nella strage avvenuta tra martedì 13 e mercoledì 14 giugno ad 80 chilometri al largo del porto di Pylos. Gli stessi migranti, al telefono con l’attivista Nawal Soufi, parlavano di 750 persone a bordo, di cui molti bambini. La Guardia costiera ellenica dice 646. Le foto e le informazioni disponibili fino ad ora confermano quest’ordine di grandezza, ma le cifre sono destinate a rimanere indicative. Il naufragio è avvenuto nella zona con il mare più profondo di tutto il Mediterraneo: circa 60 km a sud-ovest di Pylos si trova la Fossa di Calipso, una depressione che supera i 5.000 metri di profondità. Gli esperti dicono che il recupero dei corpi sarà quindi particolarmente difficoltoso, il mare li inghiottirà per sempre. Ad oggi, sono solo 104 i superstiti, difficilmente questo numero aumenterà.

      Oltre la produzione della morte si situa forse l’annullamento, l’annientamento della persona (della vita). Sono parole che, chiaramente, richiamano il nazismo. Non sapere chi, non sapere quanti, non poter riavere i corpi – massivamente e sistematicamente – è qualcosa che, credo, si avvicina all’annientamento.

      I dettagli che iniziano a trapelare dipingono un quadro dei fatti che non solo seppellisce ogni retorica della “tragica fatalità”, ma svela le responsabilità dirette della HCG (Hellenic Coast Guard) nel causare il “capovolgimento” della barca. Come ricostruito dall’attivista Iasonas Apostolopoulos, sulla base delle dichiarazioni del parlamentare Kriton Arsenis, che ha potuto parlare con i sopravvissuti a Kalamata, la HCG avrebbe legato il peschereccio con delle corde e provato a trascinarlo. Sarebbe stato proprio questo tentativo di rimorchio a far ribaltare la barca. Queste ricostruzioni si allineano con i primi racconti di Nawal Soufi.


      Evidentemente, la differenza – se esiste – tra uccidere e lasciar morire sfuma: non è “solo” indifferenza complice, non è “semplicemente” girarsi dall’altra parte. L’omissione di soccorso è la punta dell’iceberg di un sistema complesso – quello dei confini europei – progettato per annientare la vita. Sistema di cui la guardia costiera è solo un tassello. Non è l’Europa che finge di non vedere, è l’Europa che, strutturalmente, con delle politiche precise e radicate nel tempo, produce morte.

      La versione ufficiale della HCG descrive invece il capovolgimento come frutto di una maldestra manovra – in mare piatto – del peschereccio stesso. Dall’altra parte, puntano tutto sulla colpevolizzazione delle vittime: “Ripetevano costantemente di voler salpare per l’Italia e di non volere alcun aiuto dalla Grecia”, si ribadisce ossessivamente nel comunicato. Ma è assodato che questo improbabile “non volevano essere aiutati”, secondo il diritto del mare, non giustifica il mancato soccorso, come chiarito dall’ordine degli avvocati di Kalamata – che si è offerto di supportare gratuitamente i sopravvissuti. Così come è assodato che la HCG sapeva tutto dalla mattina di martedì 13 giugno, alla luce dell’avvistamento da parte del velivolo di Frontex e degli SOS diffusi da Alarm Phone – pubblicati da wearesolomon – e inoltrati anche ad UNCHR, NATO, e al difensore civico greco.

      Ma non lasciamo non detti: probabilmente l’HCG voleva trascinare il peschereccio in zona SAR maltese o italiana. Questa volontà è stata più forte di quella di salvare 750 vite umane in evidente pericolo. Forse anche per questo, ai giornalisti è stato impedito di parlare con i sopravvissuti. Dopo delle pressioni, è stato permesso solo ai parlamentari.

      Come da copione, nove di loro, egiziani, sono stati arrestati accusati di traffico di esseri umani ed omicidio 1, mentre la maggior parte (71 persone) è stata trasferita nel campo di Malakasa 2, nel “centro di accoglienza e identificazione”: una struttura chiusa, controllata, isolata, priva di supporto psicologico e assistenza medica adeguata. Sono siriani, egiziani, pakistani e palestinesi. Non devono poter raccontare, devono capire che non c’è pietà, che nulla gli sarà concesso.

      Nel porto di Kalamata, sembra di rivivere i giorni di Cutro: arrivano i familiari da tutta Europa e non solo. Alcuni trovano i propri cari, molti non li troveranno. Nessun aiuto da parte dello Stato, nessuna informazione, dicono. Non c’è pace per i vivi, non c’è pace per i morti. Finora sono stati recuperati ed identificati 78 corpi, saranno trasportati con dei camion frigorifero al cimitero di Schisto.

      Intanto, si riempiono le strade della Grecia. Dal porto di Pylos ad Atene, Salonicco, Patrasso, Karditsa, Kalamata, migliaia di persone si sono messe in marcia. Ad Atene, giovedì sera, una marea umana si è scontrata con i soliti gangster in divisa.

      La risposta dello Stato è sempre la stessa, anche con i solidali. Sono piazze commosse ma piene di rabbia. Una rabbia degna. Puntano chiaramente il dito verso gli assassini: non solo la guardia costiera, ma lo Stato greco, l’Unione Europea, Frontex, questo sistema coloniale e razzista.

      Domenica 18 giugno nel pomeriggio un altro corteo, chiamato dalla Open Assembly Against Pushbacks and Border Violence, si muoverà dal Pireo verso gli uffici di Frontex: l’agenzia europea non potrà giocare la parte dei “buoni” che avevano segnalato per tempo la barca in pericolo.

      Dalle strade, si leva una promessa: non dimentichiamo, non perdoniamo.

    • Did migrants reject help before deadly Greek wreck, or beg for it? Coast guard, activists disagree

      This undated handout image provided by Greece’s coast guard on Wednesday, June14, 2023, shows scores of people covering practically every free stretch of deck on a battered fishing boat that later capsized and sank off southern Greece. A fishing boat carrying migrants trying to reach Europe capsized and sank off Greece on Wednesday, authorities said, leaving at least 79 dead and many more missing in one of the worst disasters of its kind this year.(Hellenic Coast Guard via AP)
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      This undated handout image provided by Greece’s coast guard on Wednesday, June14, 2023, shows scores of people covering practically every free stretch of deck on a battered fishing boat that later capsized and sank off southern Greece. A fishing boat carrying migrants trying to reach Europe capsized and sank off Greece on Wednesday, authorities said, leaving at least 79 dead and many more missing in one of the worst disasters of its kind this year.(Hellenic Coast Guard via AP)

      This much is clear: On June 9, an old steel fishing trawler left eastern Libya for Italy, carrying far too many people.

      As many as 750 men, women and children from Syria, Egypt, the Palestinian territories and Pakistan were on board, fleeing hopelessness in their home countries and trying to reach relatives in Europe.

      Five days later, the trawler sank off the coast of Greece in one of the deepest parts of the Mediterranean Sea. Only 104 people, all men, survived. The remains of 78 people were recovered.

      There are still more questions than answers about what led up to one of the worst shipwrecks in recent Mediterranean history.

      Activists, migration experts and opposition politicians have criticized Greek authorities for not acting earlier to rescue the migrants, even though a coast guard vessel escorted the trawler for hours and watched helplessly as it sank.

      Below is a timeline of events based on reports from Greek authorities, a commercial ship, and activists who said they were in touch with passengers. They describe sequences of events that at times converge, but also differ in key ways.

      The Greek Coast Guard said that the overcrowded trawler was moving steadily toward Italy, refusing almost all assistance, until minutes before it sank. This is in part supported by the account of a merchant tanker that was nearby.

      But activists said that people on board were in danger and made repeated pleas for help more than 15 hours before the vessel sank.

      International maritime law and coast guard experts said that conditions on the trawler clearly showed it was at risk, and should have prompted an immediate rescue operation, regardless of what people on board may have said.

      Much of these accounts could not immediately be independently verified.

      Missing from this timeline is the testimony of survivors, who have been transferred to a closed camp and kept away from journalists.

      All times are given in Greece’s time zone.


      Around 11 a.m. on Tuesday, Italian authorities informed Greece that a fishing trawler packed with migrants was in international waters southwest of the Peloponnese. Greece said the Italian authorities were alerted by an activist.

      Around the same time, human rights activist Nawal Soufi wrote on social media that she had been contacted by a woman on a boat that had left Libya four days earlier.

      The migrants had run out of water, Soufi wrote, and shared GPS coordinates through a satellite phone showing they were approximately 100 km (62 miles) from Greece.

      “Dramatic situation on board. They need immediate rescue,” she wrote Tuesday morning.

      Over the course of the day, Soufi described some 20 calls with people on the trawler in a series of social media posts and a later audio recording. The Associated Press could not reach Soufi.

      A surveillance aircraft from the European Border and Coast Guard Agency Frontex spotted the overcrowded trawler at 11:47 p.m. and notified Greek authorities, the agency told AP. On Saturday, Frontex told AP its plane had to leave the scene after 10 minutes due to a fuel shortage but that it had also shared with Greece details and photos of the “heavily overcrowded” trawler.


      At 2 p.m., Greek authorities established contact with someone on the trawler. The vessel “did not request any assistance from the Coast Guard or from Greece,” according to a statement.

      But activists said that people on the boat were already in desperate need by Tuesday afternoon.

      At 3:11 p.m., Soufi wrote, passengers told her that seven people were unconscious.

      Around the same time, Alarm Phone, a network of activists with no connection to Soufi who run a hotline for migrants in need of rescue, said they received a call from a person on the trawler.

      “They say they cannot survive the night, that they are in heavy distress,” Alarm Phone wrote.

      At 3:35 p.m., a Greek Coast Guard helicopter located the trawler. An aerial photo released showed it packed, with people covering almost every inch of the deck.

      From then until 9 p.m., Greek authorities said, they were in contact with people on the trawler via satellite phone, radio, and shouted conversations conducted by merchant vessels and a Coast Guard boat that arrived at night. They added that people on the trawler repeatedly said they wanted to continue to Italy and refused rescue.


      At 5:10 p.m., Greek authorities asked a Maltese-flagged tanker called the Lucky Sailor to bring the trawler food and water.

      According to the company that manages the Lucky Sailor, people on the trawler “were very hesitant to receive any assistance,” and shouted that “they want to go to Italy.” Eventually, Eastern Mediterranean Maritime Limited wrote in a statement, the trawler was persuaded to accept supplies.

      Around 6 p.m., a Greek Coast Guard helicopter reported that the trawler was “sailing on a steady course and heading.”

      But at 6:20 p.m., Alarm Phone said that people on board reported that they were not moving, and that the “captain” had abandoned the trawler in a small boat.

      “Please any solution,” someone on board told Alarm Phone.

      The Greek authorities’ account suggested the trawler stopped around that time to receive supplies from the Lucky Sailor.

      At 6:55 p.m., Soufi wrote, migrants on board told her that six people had died and another two were very sick. No other account so far has mentioned deaths prior to the shipwreck, and the AP has not been able to verify this.

      Around 9 p.m., Greek authorities asked a second, Greek-flagged, merchant vessel to deliver water, and allowed the Lucky Sailor to leave.

      Then, at around 10:40 p.m., a Coast Guard boat from Crete reached the trawler, and remained nearby until it sank. According to the Coast Guard, the vessel “discreetly observed” the trawler from a distance. Once again, the Coast Guard said, the trawler did not appear to have any problems and was moving “at a steady course and speed.”


      According to Soufi’s account, attempts to deliver supplies may have contributed to the trawler’s troubles.

      Shortly after 11 p.m., she wrote that the trawler began rocking as its passengers tried to catch water bottles from another vessel. According to people on board, ropes were tied to the ship, destabilizing it and causing a “state of panic,” she said.

      The report from the Lucky Sailor said no lines were tied to the trawler, and supplies were delivered in watertight barrels tied to a rope.

      “Those on board the boat caught the line and pulled,” the company managing the Lucky Sailor told the AP.

      The other merchant vessel did not immediately reply to the AP’s questions.

      A spokesman for the Greek Coast Guard said late Friday that its vessel had briefly attached a light rope to the trawler at around 11 p.m. He stressed that none of the vessels had attempted to tow the trawler.

      Commander Nikos Alexiou told Greek channel Ant1 TV that the Coast Guard wanted to check on the trawler’s condition, but people on board again refused help and untied the rope before continuing course.

      Soufi’s last contact with the trawler was at 11 p.m. She said later in a voice memo that “they never expressed the will to continue sailing to Italy,” or refused assistance from Greece. “They were in danger and needed help.”


      According to authorities, the trawler kept moving until 1:40 a.m. Wednesday, when its engine stopped. The Coast Guard vessel then got closer to “determine the problem.”

      A few minutes later, Alarm Phone had a final exchange with people on the trawler. The activists were able to make out only: “Hello my friend … The ship you send is …” before the call cut off.

      At 2:04 a.m., more than 15 hours after Greek authorities first heard of the case, the Coast Guard reported that the trawler began rocking violently from side to side, and then capsized.

      People on deck were thrown into the sea, while others held onto the boat as it flipped. Many others, including women and children, were trapped below deck.

      Fifteen minutes later, the trawler vanished underwater.

      In the darkness of night, 104 people were rescued, and brought to shore on the Mayan Queen IV, a luxury yacht that was sailing in the vicinity of the shipwreck. Greek authorities retrieved 78 bodies. No other people have been found since Wednesday.

      As many as 500 people are missing.


    • Après le naufrage, des survivants dénoncent les gardes-côtes grecs et Frontex

      La version officielle grecque sur l’un des pires naufrages en Méditerranée est mise à mal par les témoignages de survivants. Le rôle de Frontex, l’agence européenne chargée des frontières extérieures, est également pointé du doigt. Une enquête a été ouverte.

      Plus de quatre jours après le naufrage d’un bateau de pêche en provenance de Libye, où s’étaient embarquées jusqu’à 750 personnes – notamment des ressortissantes et ressortissants égyptiens, syriens et pakistanais –, l’espoir est mince de retrouver des survivant·es au large des côtes sud de la Grèce.

      Les questions sont nombreuses en particulier sur l’action des gardes-côtes grecs, accusés par certains témoignages d’avoir provoqué l’accident. La Cour suprême grecque a ordonné une enquête sur les circonstances du drame, l’un des pires naufrages en Méditerranée avec des centaines de morts. Pour l’heure, 104 personnes ont été rescapées et 78 corps récupérés.

      Jeudi après-midi, Kriton Arsenis, ancien eurodéputé, a rencontré des survivants dans le port de Kalamata, sur la péninsule du Péloponnèse, en tant que membre de la délégation de Mera25, le parti de Yánis Varoufákis. « Les réfugiés nous ont dit que l’embarcation a chaviré pendant qu’elle était tirée par le bateau des gardes-côtes », a-t-il raconté.

      « Les survivants nous disent que le bateau a basculé alors qu’il faisait l’objet d’une manœuvre où il était tiré par les gardes-côtes helléniques, a déclaré de son côté Vincent Cochetel, envoyé spécial du Haut Commissariat aux réfugiés pour la Méditerranée occidentale et centrale. Ils nous disent qu’il était tiré non pas vers les côtes grecques, mais en dehors de la zone de secours en mer grecque. »

      Ces témoignages vont à l’encontre de la version officielle, qui, jusqu’à vendredi, expliquait que les gardes-côtes n’étaient pas intervenus.

      La Grèce est régulièrement accusée de refouler des migrant·es en mer, provoquant la crainte, derrière une aide supposée, d’être en réalité éloigné·es du territoire – une pratique illégale au regard du droit international maritime et de la Convention de Genève, qui doivent permettre à toute personne en situation de détresse d’être secourue et acheminée vers un port dit « sûr » et de pouvoir, si elle le souhaite, déposer une demande d’asile dans le pays qu’elle tentait de rallier.

      En mai dernier, des révélations du New York Times ont mis en lumière cette pratique, grâce à une vidéo d’un « push-back » prise sur le fait. Mediapart avait documenté un cas semblable en 2022, qui avait provoqué la mort de deux demandeurs d’asile.
      Le patron de Frontex sur place

      Le rôle de Frontex, l’agence européenne chargée des frontières extérieures, est également mis en question, car selon les autorités portuaires grecques, un avion de surveillance de Frontex avait repéré le bateau mardi après-midi mais les secours ne sont pas intervenus car les passagers ont « refusé toute aide ». Son patron Hans Leijtens s’est rendu à Kalamata pour établir les faits et « mieux comprendre ce qui s’est passé car Frontex a joué un rôle » dans ce naufrage « horrible ».

      « On ne demande pas aux personnes à bord d’un bateau à la dérive s’ils veulent de l’aide […], il aurait fallu une aide immédiate », a affirmé pour sa part à la télévision grecque ERT Nikos Spanos, expert international des incidents maritimes. D’après Alexis Tsipras, le chef de l’opposition grecque de gauche, qui s’est entretenu avec des rescapés, « il y a eu un appel à l’aide ».

      Le HCR et l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations (OIM), deux agences des Nations unies, se sont félicités des enquêtes « qui ont été ordonnées en Grèce sur les circonstances qui ont conduit au chavirement du bateau et à la perte de tant de vies », tout en rappelant que « le devoir de secourir sans délai les personnes en détresse en mer est une règle fondamentale du droit maritime international ».

      Le HCR et l’OIM ont rappelé vendredi que depuis le début de l’année, au moins 72 778 migrants sont arrivés en Europe (dont 54 205 en Italie), par les routes migratoires en Méditerranée orientale, centrale, et occidentale ou par le nord-ouest de l’Afrique. Dans le même temps, au moins 1 037 migrants sont morts ou portés disparus.

      Neuf Égyptiens ont été arrêtés dans le port de Kalamata. Ils sont âgés de 20 à 40 ans et soupçonnés de « trafic illégal » d’êtres humains. Parmi les suspects, qui devraient comparaître lundi devant le juge d’instruction, figure le capitaine de l’embarcation qui a chaviré, d’après une source portuaire à l’AFP.

      Areti Glezou, travailleuse sociale au sein de l’ONG grecque Thalpo était en première ligne aux côtés des rescapés. Manifestement choquée, elle se souviendra longtemps de certains détails à glacer le sang. « Un homme me racontait qu’il a nagé pendant deux heures au côté de corps d’enfants avant d’être secouru. » Elle s’arrête, reprend son souffle et, les larmes aux yeux, elle poursuit : « Oui, ça, ils me l’ont tous dit, les cales étaient remplies de femmes et d’enfants. » Aucun n’aura été retrouvé vivant.

      Plus de 120 Syriens se trouvaient à bord et un grand nombre d’entre eux sont portés disparus, ont indiqué vendredi à l’AFP des membres de leurs familles et des militants locaux. La plupart sont originaires de la province instable de Deraa dans le sud du pays. Berceau du soulèvement antirégime déclenché en 2011, elle est revenue sous le contrôle des forces gouvernementales en juillet 2018. Plusieurs d’entre eux ont gagné la Libye, d’où était parti le bateau, en transitant par des pays voisins comme le Liban, la Jordanie ou encore l’Arabie saoudite.

      Vendredi matin, on a cependant vu des larmes de joie sur le port de Kalamata. Des deux côtés des barrières qui entourent le hangar où logent les rescapés, deux frères se sont aperçus. Fardi a retrouvé Mohamed vivant. Le grand a retrouvé le petit. Autour d’eux les sourires fleurissent sur les visages. Pour quelques brefs instants, journalistes, humanitaires et hommes en uniformes redeviennent d’abord des êtres humains. Comme un rayon de lumière qui illumine soudain un océan de tristesse.

      Une demi-heure plus tard, des bus viennent chercher les rescapés pour les emmener au camp de Malakasa dans la région d’Athènes. Le hangar est désormais vide.


    • Naufrage de migrants en Méditerranée : ce que l’on sait sur les responsabilités des garde-côtes grecs

      Depuis le naufrage dramatique qui a fait 78 morts et possiblement plusieurs centaines d’autres mercredi 14 juin, les critiques ciblent l’absence d’intervention préalable des gardes-côtes grecs. Ces derniers rejettent la faute sur les passagers du navire.

      Le naufrage d’un bateau de migrants mercredi 14 juin avec des centaines de personnes à bord, au large de la Grèce, a soulevé de nombreuses questions sur les responsabilités des autorités. Voici ce que l’on sait depuis que ce chalutier vétuste a chaviré et coulé dans les eaux internationales, faisant au moins 78 morts.
      L’opération de sauvetage

      Les garde-côtes grecs ont affirmé mercredi matin « avoir été prévenus mardi par les autorités italiennes concernant un bateau avec à bord un grand nombre d’étrangers ». Des patrouilleurs grecs ont été mobilisés pour le repérer. « C’est un appareil aérien de Frontex [la décriée agence européenne de gardes-frontières, ndlr] qui a le premier repéré le bateau mardi après-midi, puis deux bateaux qui naviguaient dans la zone », selon les garde-côtes.

      Nawal Soufi, une bénévole travaillant pour la ligne téléphonique d’assistance à des migrants en danger Alarm Phone, assure sur son compte Facebook avoir reçu un SOS d’un bateau avec 750 personnes à bord en provenance de Libye.

      A 22 h 40 mardi, le chalutier notifie une panne du moteur. Le patrouilleur à proximité « a immédiatement tenté d’approcher le chalutier pour déterminer le problème », ont noté les garde-côtes. Vingt-quatre minutes plus tard, le patron du patrouilleur a annoncé par radio que le bateau avait chaviré. Il a coulé en quinze minutes.
      La défausse grecque contre les migrants

      Selon les garde-côtes grecs, « il n’y a pas eu de demande d’aide » des personnes à bord du bateau de pêche. « Après de nombreux appels du centre opérationnel des garde-côtes grecs pour les secourir, la réponse du bateau de pêche a été négative », selon le communiqué. « La salle des opérations […] a été en contact répété avec le bateau de pêche. Ils ont constamment répété qu’ils souhaitaient naviguer vers l’Italie », selon la même source.

      Le porte-parole du gouvernement a également expliqué vendredi que « les garde-côtes se sont rapprochés du bateau, ils ont jeté une corde pour le stabiliser, mais les migrants ont refusé l’aide ». « Ils disaient ‘‘No help, Go Italy’’ [’’Pas d’aide, on va en Italie’’, ndlr] », a-t-il ajouté.

      Pour sa part, le porte-parole de la police portuaire Nikolaos Alexiou a souligné qu’on ne pouvait « pas remorquer un bateau avec un si grand nombre de gens à bord par la force, il faut qu’ils coopèrent ».

      Selon un réfugié syrien en Allemagne, Reber Hebun, arrivé en Grèce pour retrouver son frère de 24 ans, survivant du naufrage, « les garde-côtes grecs n’ont rien fait pour les aider au début alors qu’ils étaient près d’eux », a-t-il dit après avoir parlé avec son frère. « Un bateau commercial a donné de l’eau et de la nourriture et tout le monde s’est précipité, le bateau a été déstabilisé à ce moment », selon lui.
      Les critiques envers les garde-côtes grecs

      Des experts et des ONG ont mis en cause les garde-côtes grecs qui auraient dû intervenir quoi qu’il arrive, selon eux. Pour Vincent Cochetel, envoyé spécial du Haut-Commissariat de l’ONU pour les réfugiés (HCR) pour la Méditerranée centrale et occidentale, « l’argument grec selon lequel les personnes ne voulaient pas être secourues pour poursuivre leur route vers l’Italie ne tient pas ». « C’est aux autorités grecques qu’il incombait de procéder ou, au moins, de coordonner une opération de sauvetage, en utilisant soit leurs propres navires de sauvetage soit en faisant appel à tout autre bateau sur zone, y compris à des navires marchands », a-t-il jugé. « Selon le droit maritime international, les autorités grecques auraient dû coordonner plus tôt cette opération de sauvetage, dès lors que Frontex avait repéré ce bateau en détresse », a-t-il poursuivi.

      « On ne demande pas aux personnes à bord d’un bateau à la dérive s’ils veulent de l’aide […] il aurait fallu une aide immédiate », a critiqué pour sa part Nikos Spanos, expert international des incidents maritimes.

      Hans Leijtens, le patron de Frontex, s’est rendu jeudi à Kalamata pour chercher à « mieux comprendre ce qui s’est passé car Frontex a joué un rôle » dans cet « horrible » naufrage.

      Vendredi, l’ONU a demandé des investigations rapides et des mesures « urgentes et décisives » pour éviter de nouveaux drames. « Il doit avoir une enquête approfondie sur les événements qui se sont déroulés au cours de cette tragédie. Et j’espère que nous pourrons trouver des réponses et apprendre de l’expérience », a souligné Jeremy Laurence, porte-parole du Haut-Commissariat aux droits de l’homme.
      Des centaines de personnes à bord

      78 corps ont jusqu’ici été retrouvés en mer au large des côtes de la péninsule du Péloponnèse, selon les garde-côtes grecs, et 104 personnes ont pu être secourues à temps. Mais le bilan serait en réalité bien plus lourd. Le porte-parole du gouvernement grec, Ilias Siakantaris, avait assuré mercredi que des informations non confirmées faisaient état de 750 personnes à bord du chalutier. L’Organisation internationale pour les migrations (OIM) « redoute que des centaines de personnes supplémentaires » se soient noyées « dans l’une des tragédies les plus dévastatrices en Méditerranée en une décennie ».

      Parmi les personnes qui se trouvaient à bord, figuraient notamment plus 120 Syriens, et un grand nombre d’entre eux sont portés disparus, ont déploré vendredi des membres de leurs familles et des militants locaux. La plupart de ces migrants sont originaires de la province instable de Deraa dans le sud de la Syrie. Plusieurs d’entre eux ont gagné la Libye, d’où était parti le bateau, en transitant par des pays voisins comme le Liban, la Jordanie ou encore l’Arabie Saoudite, selon les mêmes sources.

      Les recherches se poursuivent mais les espoirs de retrouver des survivants s’amenuisent, trois jours après le drame. De nombreuses femmes et enfants auraient voyagé dans la cale du navire, qui a sombré dans une zone de la Méditerranée de plusieurs milliers de mètres de profondeur, la fosse Calypso.

      Par ailleurs, 9 personnes de nationalité égyptienne soupçonnées d’être des passeurs ont été arrêtées à la suite du drame.


    • Message de Vicky Skoumbi envoyé sur la mailing-list de Migreurop, le 18 juin 2023 :

      une vidéo glaçante avec un #témoignage de survivants qui fait état de la #responsabilité criminelle des #garde-côtes_grecs, avec la traduction d’un post d’Iasonas Apostolopoulos


      « Les garde-côtes grecs se sont approchés de nous et nous ont lancé une corde bleue. Ils ont commencé à nous remorquer. La façon dont ils nous tiraient n’était pas correcte. Nous criions. Le navire a alors commencé à prendre de la gîte sur la gauche, les garde-côtes se sont tournés vers le côté opposé et notre navire a commencé à prendre de la gîte sur le côté et à couler.

      Nous essayions de grimper sur le bateau, nous voulions survivre.

      Les garde-côtes ont détaché la corde. Nous criions à l’aide. Ils ont fait tourner leur navire, créant une grosse vague, et notre bateau a complètement chaviré. Les personnes qui se trouvaient sur le côté du bateau se sont retrouvées en dessous. Nous pouvions entendre les gens dans la cale frapper sur la tôle en fer.

      Le bateau a complètement coulé ».


      Le journaliste Fallah Elias de la chaîne allemande WDR a partagé sur Twitter le témoignage absolument choquant et horrifiant d’un naufragé secouru.


      Dans la vidéo, d’autres survivants pakistanais confirment que les garde-côtes grecs ont fait couler le bateau en le remorquant.

      Ni une, ni deux, ni trois, de nombreux témoignages désignent le gouvernement grec et les garde-côtes comme les seuls responsables du naufrage et de la noyade de centaines de personnes à Pylos. Au lieu de les secourir, ils ont tiré le bateau avec une corde jusqu’à ce qu’il chavire. Probablement pour les faire sortir de la zone de sauvetage grecque.

      Selon certaines informations, une centaine d’enfants figureraient parmi les morts.

      Si tout cela est vrai, il s’agit du plus grand homicide de l’histoire de l’Europe d’après-guerre.



    • Möglicherweise waren Push-Backs der Küstenwache Schuld am Bootsunglück in Griechenland

      Es gibt Vorwürfe, dass das Boot mit Geflüchteten vor Griechenland wegen Push-Backs der griechischen Küstenwache gesunken ist. WDR-Journalist Bamdad Esmaili berichtet im Interview, was Überlebende des Unglücks erzählen.

      Nach dem Bootsunglück vor Griechenland mit hunderten Toten gibt es schwere Vorwürfe gegen die griechische Küstenwache, das Unglück verursacht zu haben. Die Rede ist von so genannten Push-Backs. Darunter versteht man Maßnahmen, mit denen flüchtende Menschen daran gehindert werden, die Grenze zu übertreten und einen Asylantrag zu stellen. In der EU-Grundrechte-Charta wird das Recht auf Asyl gemäß der Genfer Flüchtlingskonvention allerdings garantiert.

      Die Küstenwache weist den Vorwurf von Push-Backs zurück - jetzt soll die europäische Polizeibehörde Europol ermitteln. WDR-Journalist Bamdad Esmaili ist in Griechenland und hat mit seinem Team mit Überlebenden sprechen können.

      WDR: Es gibt Vorwürfe gegen die griechische Küstenwache. Worum geht es da?

      Bamdad Esmaili: Es geht darum, dass es Vorwürfe gibt, dass die griechische Küstenwache dieses Boot in die Richtung von italienischem Gewässer gezogen hat - dass sie es sozusagen gepushbackt hat. Diesen Vorwurf hatten wir bislang nur gehört, gestern Abend gelang es meinem Kollegen, der arabisch spricht, dann mit ungefähr zehn überlebenden Geflüchteten zu sprechen. Sie haben unabhängig voneinander berichtet, dass dieses Boot tatsächlich gezogen wurde - nicht nur einmal, nicht nur zweimal, sondern insgesamt dreimal. Und dabei ist das Schiff dann ins Wanken gekommen und ist gesunken.

      WDR: Das heißt, das Ziehen dieses Bootes, der Versuch es nach Italien zu ziehen und damit aus der Zuständigkeit Griechenlands herauszuholen, ist für dieses Unglück - so scheint es zumindest im Moment - verantwortlich?

      Esmaili: Das ist der Vorwurf, der im Raum steht. Das muss natürlich erstmal bewiesen werden. Die Griechen lehnen das vehement ab und dementieren das. Sie sagen nach wie vor immer noch, dass sie Hilfe angeboten haben und das Schiff habe diese Hilfe nicht gewollt, weil sie demnach nach Italien wollten.

      WDR: Wir können davon ausgehen, dass es jetzt eine größere Untersuchung geben wird. Wie wird in Griechenland darüber diskutiert, was hören Sie da?

      Esmaili: Das ist zum Politikum geworden, weil nächste Woche Parlamentswahlen in Griechenland sind. Vor allem die Opposition nutzt dieses Thema jetzt aus und kritisiert die Regierung. Und es ist für drei Tage eine Staatstrauer angeordnet worden. Es gibt auch Proteste, Kundgebungen, es gab einen Trauermarsch in Athen, also das ist ein Riesenthema hier in Griechenland.

      WDR: Sie haben erwähnt, dass Sie mit Überlebenden sprechen konnten. Wie haben diese denn die Situation auf dem Schiff beschrieben? Abgesehen von der Frage, ob sie gezogen wurden und damit das Unglück ausgelöst wurde.

      Esmaili: Man muss sich das so vorstellen: Ein Schiff, das 30 Meter lang ist, war völlig überfüllt. Die Überlebenden erzählen uns, dass sie von den Schleppern gehört haben, dass 747 Personen auf diesem Schiff waren. Deswegen ist auch immer von knapp 750 Personen die Rede und die waren überall: Unten, oben auf dem Deck, seit Tagen unterwegs, ohne Nahrung, ohne Wasser. Da kann man sich vorstellen, wie die Stimmung auf dem Schiff war.

      WDR: Das heißt, man muss davon ausgehen, dass das Unglück zu hunderten Toten geführt hat. Was geschieht jetzt mit den Menschen, die gerettet wurden - auch mit denen, mit denen Sie gesprochen haben?

      Esmaili: Wir sind jetzt in Malakasa in der Nähe von Athen und dort sind 71 Personen untergebracht, die kommen ganz normal ins Asylverfahren. Knapp 30 Personen sind noch in Kalamata im Krankenhaus, die werden behandelt und dann kommen sie vermutlich auch ins ganz normale Asylverfahren.

      WDR: Ganz normale Asylverfahren nach dem, was sie erlebt haben, das ist sicherlich auch eine schwierige Situation. Wurde die Suche nach Überlebenden denn inzwischen eingestellt?

      Esmaili: Das kann ich so nicht bestätigen. Wir haben gestern Abend noch gehört, dass noch weiter gesucht wird, aber natürlich kann man nach so vielen Tagen und bei so vielen Menschen davon ausgehen, dass man kaum noch Überlebende aus dem Meer retten kann. Rund 100 Kinder sollen auch mit an Bord gewesen sein.


    • Frontex statement following tragic shipwreck off Pylos

      We are shocked and saddened by the tragic events that unfolded off the coast of Greece. The Frontex Executive Director, who travelled to Greece after learning about the tragedy, has offered any support the authorities may need.

      People smugglers have once again trifled with human lives by forcing several hundred migrants on a fishing boat not designed to fit such a number of people. Many were trapped underneath the deck. Our thoughts go out to the families of the victims.

      On 13 June before noon, a Frontex plane spotted the fishing vessel inside the Greek search and rescue region in international waters. The ship was heavily overcrowded and was navigating at slow speed (6 knots) direction north-east.

      Frontex immediately informed the Greek and Italian authorities about the sighting, providing them with information about the condition of the vessel, speed and photos.

      The plane kept monitoring the vessel, constantly providing updates to all relevant national authorities until it ran out of fuel and had to return to base.

      As a Frontex drone was to patrol the Aegean on the same day, the agency offered to provide additional assistance ahead of the planned and scheduled flight. The Greek authorities asked the agency to send the drone to another search and rescue incident south off Crete with 80 people in danger.

      The drone, after attending to the incident south off Crete, flew to the last known position of the fishing vessel. The drone arrived at the scene four hours later at 04:05 (UTC) in the morning, when a large-scale search and rescue operation by Greek authorities was ongoing and there was no sign of the fishing boat. No Frontex plane or boat was present at the time of the tragedy.


      Commentaire de Lena K. sur twitter :

      This might be important. According to Frontex, they offered a drone to fly over the location of the Pylos shipwreck in the evening of 13th, but the Greek authorities decided to send it to another distress incident south of Crete. Convenient (for both).


    • Naufrage en Grèce : le bateau dérivait, contrairement à la version des garde-côtes

      Que s’est-il passé dans les heures précédant le terrible naufrage au large du Péloponnèse ? Les garde-côtes grecs affirment que le chalutier bondé faisait route vers l’Italie à une vitesse régulière et n’avait pas besoin d’être secouru. Une enquête de la BBC affirme le contraire : le chalutier était à l’arrêt et nécessitait une aide urgente.

      Version contre version. Depuis le terrible naufrage du mercredi 13 juin au large de la Grèce, qui a coûté la vie à au moins 500 personnes (https://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/49759/au-moins-200-pakistanais-parmi-les-victimes-du-naufrage-en-grece), les autorités grecques campent sur leurs positions : le chalutier, qui comptait au moins 700 exilés à bord, n’était pas en danger imminent. Du moins, pas dans les heures précédant le naufrage.

      Selon le communiqué officiel du Premier ministre grec (https://www.primeminister.gr/2023/06/14/32002), Kyriakos Mitsotakis, le bateau, parti de Tobrouk en Libye, naviguait en direction de l’Italie. « À 15h35, le navire de pêche a été repéré par l’hélicoptère de la Garde côtière [grecque] naviguant à vitesse régulière », peut-on lire sur le communiqué. Il avait été repéré pour la première fois vers 11h du matin, et depuis, les autorités grecques le surveillait à distance. Pourquoi ne pas le secourir immédiatement ? Parce qu’il ne semblait pas en difficulté, se défendent les Grecs. « Le navire navigu[ait] avec un cap et une vitesse constantes », écrivent-ils dans leur rapport.

      Cette ligne de défense sera la même tout au long de la journée. À partir de 15h30 jusqu’à 21h, les autorités helléniques affirment avoir été à de nombreuses reprises en communication avec le bateau via téléphone satellite. À chaque fois, les garde-côtes notent que le chalutier navigue à vitesse régulière. Et que les exilés ne réclament aucune aide. « Les migrants criaient : ’Pas d’aide, on va en Italie’ », expliquait déjà vendredi 16 juin le porte-parole des garde-côtes grecs, Nikos Alexiou.

      Dans un autre communiqué publié le 19 juin (https://www.hcg.gr/el/drasthriothtes/dieykriniseis-anaforika-me-eyreia-epixeirhsh-ereynas-kai-diaswshs-allodapwn-se-d), Athènes maintient sa position et affirme que le bateau a parcouru une distance de 24 nautiques marins - soit 44 km - depuis le moment où il a été repéré jusqu’à son naufrage.

      « Le navire ne bouge pas »

      Seulement, l’enquête menée par la BBC (https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-65942426) contredit la version grecque. Grâce aux coordonnées GPS des autres navires présents dans la zone méditerranéenne, la BBC est arrivée à la conclusion que le bateau n’a pas bougé entre 18h et 21h, mardi 13 juin. Un premier chalutier – le Lucky sailor – s’en est approché, sur ordre des garde-côtes grecs, à 18h pour lui fournir des vivres et de l’eau. Trois heures plus tard, c’est au même point de coordonnées maritimes qu’un second navire – le Faithfull Warrior - s’est rendu pour un autre ravitaillement.

      Et la BBC de continuer. « Une vidéo – qui aurait été tournée depuis le Faithful Warrior – prétend montrer des vivres livrés au navire via une corde dans l’eau. La BBC a vérifié ces images et a découvert que le navire - qui ne bouge pas – correspond à la forme du navire de migrants en détresse. Les conditions météorologiques correspondent à celles signalées à l’époque. »

      Pourtant, dans le dernier communiqué du 19 juin, les Grecs ne parlent pas d’immobilisation du navire. « Dans la soirée, le navire de patrouille côtière [...] est arrivé dans la région et a repéré [le chalutier] se déplaçant par ses propres moyens, à faible vitesse », maintiennent-ils.

      Et d’insister. Lors des deux ravitaillements, le navire a dans un premier temps poursuivi sa route avant de finalement s’arrêter. « Une fois le processus [de ravitaillement] terminé, les occupants du bateau ont commencé à jeter les fournitures à la mer », notent-ils encore dans leur document.

      « Navire secoué par le vent et les vagues »

      Enfin, à 22h40, les garde-côtes affirment s’être approché du chalutier tout en restant « à distance ». Là encore, ils ne détectent aucun problème de navigation. Et proposent de l’aide au navire en difficulté. « [Le chalutier] s’est de nouveau arrêté quelques minutes à l’approche [de la garde-côtière] puis a continué son chemin ».

      Entre le dernier ravitaillement et l’immobilisation du chalutier - à cause d’une panne mécanique -, une distance d’environ 6 mille nautiques (11 km) a été parcouru. À aucun moment, selon Athènes, le navire n’a donc été immobile.

      À l’échelle de la Méditerranée, ces dizaines de mille nautiques parcourus par le chalutier ne signifie pas qu’il naviguait de plein gré, insiste la BBC. Mais plutôt qu’il se déplaçait à peine « ce que l’on peut attendre d’un navire en détresse secoué par le vent et les vagues dans la partie la plus profonde de la mer Méditerranée », explique la BBC. Selon le média, les garde-côtes auraient donc dû procéder au sauvetage.

      Vers 2h du matin, dans la nuit du mardi à mercredi, le bateau fera naufrage. Le bilan provisoire fait toujours état de 78 morts, et des centaines de disparus.


    • Il video di Frontex e quel barcone stracarico in balia del mare

      Nel video di Frontex il barcone stracarico di migranti in navigazione tra la Libia, da dove era partito quattro giorni prima, e l’Europa. Le immagini sono state registrate il 13 giugno alle ore 9.48 Utc. Il naufragio è avvenuto la notte tra il 13 e il 14 giugno.


      Salgono a 80 le vittime accertate del tragico naufragio avvenuto a sud del Peloponneso, in Grecia, la settimana scorsa. I soccorsi hanno recuperato i corpi di altri due uomini a largo di Pylos. Le persone tratte in salvo sono ancora 104, mentre mancano all’appello almeno 600 persone, tra cui 100 bambini che al momento del naufragio si trovavano nella stiva. I corpi sono stati trasportati nel porto di Kalamata. Proseguono intanto le ricerche della Guardia costiera.

      Il racconto di un sopravvissuto

      «La Guardia costiera greca ci ha detto che ci avrebbe portato in acque italiane, che ci stavano spingendo. Era una nave da guerra. Poi la nostra barca si è ribaltata. Sono finito in mare, urlavo, non hanno fatto nulla per salvarci. Ho cercato di rimanere a galla per mezz’ora poi quando sono arrivate le barche della Guardia costiera mi sono allontanato perchè avevo paura. Ho visto la luce di una nave commerciale in lontananza e l’ho raggiunta». E’ la testimonianza-choc che sta circolando in queste ore su twitter. Si Tratta di un sopravvissuto siriano che racconta cosa è successo quella notte, fra martedì e mercoledì di una settimana fa, quando il barcone, partito dalla Libia, si è inabissando portandosi dietro almeno 600 persone (fra cui 100 bambini).

      La ricostruzione della Guardia costiera greca
      «In totale, il peschereccio ha percorso una distanza di circa 30 miglia nautiche dal momento del rilevamento al momento dell’affondamento» ha dichiarato la Guardia costiera greca in un comunicato. «Il chiarimento», precisa la nota, arriva a seguito delle «pubblicazioni della stampa internazionale e nazionale» secondo cui il peschereccio sovraffollato non si è mosso per almeno 7 ore prima di capovolgersi. «Nelle ore pomeridiane» di martedì 13 giugno, l’imbarcazione dei migranti «è stata avvicinata da una nave cisterna per fornire assistenza», continua il comunicato della Guardia costiera costiera sul naufragio del peschereccio a largo di Pylos. Nel testo si specifica nuovamente che i migranti a bordo avevano fatto resistenza e che poi il peschereccio si è fermato ed «è iniziato il rifornimento di viveri». Dalle ricostruzioni delle autorità elleniche si legge anche che una seconda nave cisterna si è impegnata ad avvicinarsi all’imbarcazione dei migranti per fornire provviste, ma il peschereccio avrebbe fatto resistenza e si sarebbe spostato verso ovest. Alla fine, la nave cisterna ha iniziato la procedura di rifornimento ma al termine di questa i migranti «hanno iniziato a gettare le provviste in mare». «L’intero processo di rifornimento di provviste agli occupanti del peschereccio da parte delle due navi commerciali è durato in totale più di quattro ore e trenta minuti», aggiunge la Guardia costiera, specificando che «nelle ore serali» è arrivata nella zona una loro motovedetta e «ha avvistato il peschereccio che si muoveva autonomamente, a bassa velocità». Secondo la ricostruzione delle autorità elleniche, la motovedetta «ha avviato una procedura di avvicinamento all’imbarcazione per accertarsi delle condizioni attuali del natante e dei suoi occupanti», mentre «la nave si è fermata di nuovo per alcuni minuti durante l’avvicinamento da parte della motovedetta e poi ha continuato la sua rotta».
      «Dal momento in cui è stato completato il processo di rifornimento fino all’immobilizzazione del peschereccio a causa di un guasto meccanico, il peschereccio ha percorso una distanza di circa 6 miglia nautiche» conclude la Guardia costiera greca.

      Islamabad: 300 cittadini pachistani annegati a Pylos
      Più di 300 pachistani sono annegati nel naufragio del peschereccio al largo delle coste greche del Peloponneso: il numero delle vittime è stato reso noto dal presidente del Senato di Islamabad Muhammad Sadiq Sanjrani inviando le condoglianze alle famiglie. Lo scrive la Cnn. «I nostri pensieri e le nostre preghiere sono con voi e preghiamo che le anime defunte trovino la pace eterna», ha detto Sanjrani. «Questo devastante incidente sottolinea l’urgenza di affrontare e condannare l’esecrabile traffico illegale di esseri umani». Le autorità greche non hanno ancora confermato il bilancio delle vittime pakistane.


    • A survivor of #Pylos shipwreck shared harrowing details:

      ➡️Two people died from thirst and hunger on the 4th and 5th days of the journey
      ➡️On the 4th day, people started drinking from the boat engine’s water. On the 5th day, a state of “slow death” was announced

      ➡️On 16 June, they started calling for any coastguard as they didn’t know they were in the Greek waters.
      ➡️A luxury yacht provided 4 boxes of water for almost 750 people & this created tension between people due to thirst.

      ➡️A giant Greek ship threw ropes to people & towed the boat. Then, they started throwing water bottles at them leading to an imbalance in the boat
      ➡️The boat started sinking. We started to beg to be rescued and showed them the dead bodies but the ship wasn’t qualified for rescue

      ➡️Around sunset, a Greek military ship with masked people wearing black approached, towed them with only one blue robe & increased their ship’s speed
      ➡️That was when the ship capsized. People started shouting as they sink. People on the Greek military ship were just watching
      Full testimony here:


    • I superstiti del naufragio di Pylos accusano la Guardia costiera greca

      Nella notte tra il 13 e il 14 giugno le autorità greche avrebbero tentato di trainare il peschereccio partito dalla Libia con a bordo oltre 700 persone, provocandone l’inabissamento. Le testimonianze dei sopravvissuti, confinati subito dopo aver toccato terra, smontano la versione di Atene. Le vittime sarebbero almeno 643

      Secondo diverse testimonianze dei sopravvissuti il peschereccio con oltre 700 persone a bordo è affondato al largo delle coste greche, nelle prime ore di mercoledì 21 giugno, durante un tentativo fallito di rimorchio da parte della Guardia costiera greca. L’accusa è contenuta nelle dichiarazioni rilasciate da alcuni naufraghi all’autorità giudiziaria di Kalamata, città meridionale greca –visionate dall’Ap news (https://apnews.com/article/greece-migrant-shipwreck-smugglers-9daf86915e8bd89a1697dd1ee75504ac) e dal quotidiano ellenico Kathimerini- che smentiscono la versione delle autorità greche secondo cui la barca non sarebbe stata scortata nelle sue ultime ore di navigazione e non ci sarebbe stato alcun tentativo di abbordarla.

      “La nave greca ha gettato una corda ed è stata legata alla nostra prua -ha spiegato Abdul Rahman Alhaz, 24 anni, palestinese che è riuscito a salvarsi-. Dopo hanno iniziato a muoversi e a tirare, per poco più di due minuti. Noi gridavamo ‘Stop, stop’ perché la barca era sovraccarica. Poi ha cominciato a inclinarsi”.

      L’inabissamento del peschereccio partito dalla Libia avrebbe provocato almeno 643 vittime, secondo quanto è stato possibile ricostruire dalle testimonianze dei 104 sopravvissuti. Sarebbero 100 i bambini, sempre secondo i racconti di chi si è salvato dal naufragio, che con le donne erano stipati nella stiva della nave. Sulle dinamiche dell’incidente, però, fin da subito erano emersi versioni contrastanti.

      Un’inchiesta realizzata dalla BBC (https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-65942426) mostra che il peschereccio sovraffollato non si è mosso per almeno sette ore prima di capovolgersi mentre la guardia costiera, invece, nel comunicato stampa rilasciato successivamente al naufragio sottolinea che dalle 15.30 all’1.40 la navigazione è proseguita a “velocità e rotta costante”. La versione della BBC si basa sui dati di Marin traffic, che traccia i movimenti delle imbarcazioni nel Mediterraneo, e che confermerebbe che le navi inviate dalle autorità greche per fornire supporto all’imbarcazione carica di naufraghi siano intervenute tutte nella stessa zona e che quindi la nave avrebbe percorso “meno di poche miglia nautiche, come ci si può aspettare da una nave colpita dal vento o dalle onde nella parte più profonda del Mar Mediterraneo”. Inoltre, sempre secondo la testata inglese, la foto dell’imbarcazione pubblicata dai guardacoste ellenici giovedì 15 giugno, riferita a poche ore prima del capovolgimento, dimostra che la nave era ferma e soprattutto smentisce la versione secondo cui le stesse autorità “avevano osservato da una distanza discreta il susseguirsi dei fatti”.

      “Abbiamo lanciato una richiesta di soccorso il giorno prima del naufragio verso le 8 del mattino -ha raccontato un sopravvissuto alla Ong Consolidated rescue group- (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOzLIXa1cQ8

      ). Non sapevamo neanche che fossimo in Grecia”. Alle 9.47 del mattino Frontex, l’Agenzia che sorveglia le frontiere europee, ha comunicato alle autorità italiane e greche la presenza di un peschereccio sovraffollato e la Centrale operativa di Roma intorno alle 11 ha comunicato la posizione della nave, nel Sud del Peloponneso, al centro operativo di Atene. Alle 13.50 da Mitilini si è alzato un elicottero della Guardia costiera greca diretto verso il peschereccio, raggiunto verso le 15.35. Le stesse autorità greche, intanto, stavano chiedendo alle imbarcazioni che navigavano nell’area di cambiare rotta. “Una barca ci ha rifornito di quattro boxes d’acqua da sei bottiglie l’una: le persone si colpivano per prenderla -continua il sopravvissuto-. Questa nave ci ha lanciato una corda per avvicinarci ma ci ha detto che non era loro compito salvarci e che presto sarebbe arrivata la Guardia costiera”. La situazione a bordo era tesa, racconta sempre l’uomo intervistato dal Consolidated rescue group, al quarto giorno di navigazione non c’era né acqua né cibo, due persone erano morte e giacevano sul vascello: al quinto giorno, quello precedente al naufragio, qualcuno beveva dal motore perché l’acqua era finita. Ma anche nel racconto dell’uomo quello che succede al calar del sole di martedì scorso, dopo l’intervento delle navi civili, ripercorre le testimonianze di decine di altri naufraghi. “La Guardia costiera, una volta arrivata, ci ha detto di seguirli così l’Italia ci avrebbe salvato. Lo abbiamo fatto per mezz’ora, poi il motore si è rotto. Erano vestiti di nero e mascherati, senza segni militari. Ci hanno tirati con una corta e poi sono ripartiti, la nave ha perso stabilità e poco dopo è affondata”.

      Da Atene le autorità hanno dichiarato che i naufraghi hanno più volte rifiutato il loro intervento perché volevano proseguire verso l’Italia. Diverse testimonianze dei naufraghi smentiscono questa versione. Nawal Soufi, attivista rifugiata indipendente che quel giorno ha lanciato per prima l’Sos per la barca in avaria, ha dichiarato di essere stata in contatto con le persone sulla barca fino alle 23 di martedì. “L’uomo con cui stavo parlando mi ha detto espressamente: ‘Sento che questa sarà la nostra ultima notte viva’”, ha scritto. Poco prima di mezzanotte il motore si è spento.

      El Pais (https://english.elpais.com/international/2023-06-20/greece-imposes-silence-around-shipwreck-of-overcrowded-migrant-boat.) ha accusato le autorità greche di “imporre il silenzio” ai sopravvissuti al naufragio. Durante la loro permanenza nel porto di Kalamata, i 104 naufraghi avevano infatti mobilità limitata e scarso accesso alle comunicazioni: la Guardia costiera, secondo quanto ricostruito dal quotidiano spagnolo, li avrebbe confinati all’interno di un complesso recintato da cui non è stato permesso loro di uscire. Successivamente, venerdì 16 giugno, sono stati trasferiti a Malakasa, un campo per richiedenti asilo vicino ad Atene. Ma anche in questa nuova sistemazione la possibilità di uscire e avere contatti con l’esterno è risultata limitata

      Intanto martedì 20 giugno il tribunale di Kalamata ha convalidato l’arresto di nove uomini di origine egiziana accusati di essere i membri dell’equipaggio: omicidio colposo, naufragio e partecipazione a un’organizzazione criminale sono i capi d’accusa. L’avvocato Athanassios Iliopoulos, che rappresenta un presunto trafficante di 22 anni, ha dichiarato all’Associated Press che tutti e nove i sospettati hanno negato le accuse in tribunale affermando di essere essi stessi naufraghi. Iliopoulos ha detto che il suo cliente ha riferito di aver venduto il suo camion preso in prestito dai suoi genitori per raccogliere 4.500 euro per il viaggio. Anche in Pakistan, dove è stato proclamato il lutto nazionale per le vittime del naufragio, l’ufficio del primo ministro Shehbaz Sharif ha annunciato che sono state arrestate dieci persone accusate di far parte dell’organizzazione. “Intensificheremo gli sforzi nella lotta contro le persone coinvolte nell’atroce crimine della tratta di esseri umani”, ha dichiarato il capo del governo. Per la presidente della Commissione europea Ursula von der Leyen “è urgente agire”, sottolineando che l’Ue dovrebbe aiutare i Paesi africani come la Tunisia, da cui molte persone partono, a stabilizzare le loro economie. Non ha in questo caso menzionato la Libia, luogo da cui il peschereccio del naufragio è partito.

      La Grecia è stata più volte accusata di violare sui propri confini le norme sul salvataggio in mare e i diritti delle persone in transito. A maggio 2023 un’inchiesta del New York Times ha mostrato, con tanto di video ad alta definizione, le autorità greche riportare indietro verso le coste turche decine di profughi già arrivati sul territorio, tra cui anche bambini, lasciando alla deriva l’imbarcazione. Altro che attività di search and rescue. Il portale di inchiesta Solomon (https://wearesolomon.com/mag/focus-area/migration/just-007-of-819m-border-budget-to-greece-earmarked-for-search-and-resc) ha ricostruito come degli 819 milioni di euro forniti ad Atene all’interno del “Fondo di gestione delle frontiere europee” appena lo 0,07% (neanche 600mila euro) sarà destinato allo sviluppo delle attività di ricerca e soccorso in mare. La maggior parte del denaro riguarda invece l’approvvigionamento di attrezzature di deterrenza come droni, veicoli di ogni tipo, termocamere, elicotteri e sistemi di sorveglianza automatizzati. Tutto ciò che non è servito per salvare 640 persone.


    • Greece shipwreck survivors were ’abandoned for 10 minutes’

      Survivors of the June 14 shipwreck off Greece have made serious accusations against the country’s Coast Guard in witness statements.

      Statements gathered from some of the 104 survivors of a recent shipwreck off Greece contain serious accusations against the Greek Coast Guard.

      Search operations for more corpses continue after the fishing vessel, which is believed to have been carrying up to 800 migrants, capsized last week south of Greece’s Peloponnese.
      Survivors blame Greek Coast Guard

      “When the ship capsized, the Coast Guard cut the rope and continued on its way. It went farther away as we were all screaming. After 10 minutes, they came back with small boats to pick up people but they did not go as far as the ship itself. They only picked up those who managed to swim away,” one survivor told the Greek newspaper Kathimerini, recounting the last minutes of shipwreck that left at least 82 dead and hundreds missing.

      Surviving witnesses have been questioned by the Kalamata port authority.

      Every person interviewed confirmed — with slight variations in their reconstructions — that the shipwreck had been caused by a Greek Coast Guard patrol boat.

      One of the survivors said the Coast Guard’s attempt to tow the overcrowded fishing vessel created turbulence in the water that eventually caused the ship to capsize.

      “They tried to pull it using force for two or three minutes and everyone whistled to try to make them stop, since they were pulling it strongly and creating waves,” one said.

      Another added that, “for the first few minutes we went forward, but then the Coast Guard turned to the right and the ship overturned.”
      Polemics inflame political conflict prior to vote

      These witness statements run counter to the Coast Guard’s official version. Captains aboard the patrol boat say they only hooked up to the vessel for a few minutes to check the situation onboard before the ship wrecked.

      The situation has inflamed political conflict ahead of Greece’s government elections, which will be held Sunday.


    • They knew the boat could sink. Boarding it didn’t feel like a choice.

      The story of how as many as 750 migrants came to board a rickety blue fishing trawler and end up in one of the Mediterranean’s deadliest shipwrecks is bigger than any one of the victims. But for everyone, it started somewhere, and for #Thaer_Khalid_al-Rahal it started with cancer.

      The leukemia diagnosis for his youngest son, 4-year-old Khalid, came early last year. The family had been living in a Jordanian refugee camp for a decade, waiting for official resettlement after fleeing Syria’s bitter war, and doctors said the United Nations’ refugee agency could help cover treatment costs. But agency funds dwindled and the child’s case worsened. When doctors said Khalid needed a bone-marrow transplant, the father confided in relatives that waiting to relocate through official channels was no longer an option. He needed to get to Europe to earn money and save his son.

      “Thaer thought he didn’t have a choice,” said his cousin, Abdulrahman Yousif al-Rahal, reached by phone in the Jordanian refugee camp of Zaatari.

      In Egypt, the journey for #Mohamed_Abdelnasser, 27, started with a creeping realization that his carpentry work could not earn enough to support his wife and two sons.

      For #Matloob_Hussain, 42, it began the day his Greek residency renewal was rejected, sending him back to Pakistan, where his salary helped put food on the table for 20 extended family members amid a crippling economic crisis.

      “Europe doesn’t understand,” said his brother Adiil Hussain, interviewed in Greece where they had lived together. “We don’t leave because we want to. There is simply nothing for us in Pakistan.”

      On Matloob’s earlier journey to Europe, he had been so scared of the water that he kept his eyes closed the whole time. This time, the smugglers promised him they would take him to Italy. They said they would use “a good boat.”

      The trawler left from the Libyan port city of #Tobruk on June 8. Just 104 survivors have reached the Greek mainland. Eighty-two bodies have been recovered, and hundreds more have been swallowed by the sea.

      As the Mediterranean became a stage for tragedy on June 14, a billionaire and several businessmen were preparing for their own voyage in the North Atlantic. The disappearance of their submersible as it dove toward the wreckage of the Titanic sparked a no-expenses-spared search-and-rescue mission and rolling headlines. The ship packed with refugees and migrants did not.

      About half the passengers are believed to have been from Pakistan. The country’s interior minister said Friday that an estimated 350 Pakistanis were on board, and that many may have died. Of the survivors from the boat, 47 are Syrian, 43 Egyptian, 12 Pakistani and two Palestinian.

      Some of the people on the trawler were escaping war. Many were family breadwinners, putting their own lives on the line to help others back home. Some were children. A list of the missing from two towns in the Nile Delta carries 43 names. Almost half of them are under 18 years old.

      This account of what pushed them to risk a notoriously dangerous crossing is based on interviews with survivors in Greece and relatives of the dead in Pakistan, Jordan and Egypt, as the news sent ripples of distress throughout communities from North Africa to South Asia. Some people spoke on the condition of anonymity, because they feared being drawn into government crackdowns on human smuggling networks.

      Rahal’s family said they do not know how he contacted the smugglers in Libya, but remember watching as he creased under the fatigue and shame of having to ask anyone he could for the thousands of dollars they were requesting for safe passage to Italy.

      Thirteen men left from El Na’amna village, south of the Egyptian capital, Cairo, in the hope of achieving the same. Ten miles away in Ibrash, another village, Abdelnasser left the house as he usually did for his 2 a.m. factory shift but joined a packed car to Libya instead, along with 29 other young men and boys. “He told us nothing,” said his father, Amr. “We would have stopped him.”

      Many of the families said the departures caught them by surprise and that local intermediaries working for the smugglers later communicated with relatives in Egypt to gather the requested funds.

      In El Na’amna, several people said the figure was $4,500 per person — a sum impossibly high for most rural Egyptians. In Ibrash, Abdelnasser’s uncle said, two of the delegates who arrived to collect the money were disguised in women’s dress. Another woman did the talking. She collected the money, photographed receipts, and then told the family that the deal was done.

      ‘He said the boat was very bad’

      The time spent waiting in Libya was harder than the migrants expected, said family members who spoke with them throughout that period. The port city of Tobruk had become a transit hub for people, and the migrants reported that the smugglers treated them like goods to be traded. The lucky ones rented cramped apartments where they could wait near the bright blue sea.

      Travelers who had arranged to meet their intermediaries in the city of Benghazi were transported in large refrigerator trucks to the desert. One survivor described a house there “with a big yard and big walls and people at the door with guns.” It was so busy that people slept in the yard outside. Inside, a 24-year-old Pakistani migrant, Bilal Hassan, tried to lighten the mood by reciting Punjabi poetry. He is smiling in the video he sent his family, but other men in the room look tense.

      Some migrants told their families they were getting anxious and didn’t trust their smugglers. Others sent brief messages to reassure and say that they were fine.

      Rahal spoke to his wife, Nermin, every day. A month passed with no news of onward passage and his mood darkened. He worried about Khalid. In Jordan, the boy kept asking when he would see his father again. “I don’t know,” Rahal texted in reply. When one smuggler’s offer fell through, he found another who promised to get the job done faster. In voice messages to his cousin, he sounded tired.

      “I’ll manage to get the money,” he said.

      His last call to his wife was June 8. Men from the smuggling network were yelling at the migrants to pack together as closely as possible in rubber dinghies that would take them to the trawler. Up ahead, the blue fishing boat looked like it was already full.

      Matloob Hussein, the Pakistani who had lived in Greece, called his brother from the trawler. “He said the boat was very bad,” Adiil recounted. “He said they had loaded people on the boat like cattle. He said he was below deck and that he preferred it so he didn’t have to see that he was surrounded by water.”

      When Adiil asked why his brother hadn’t refused to board, Matloob said the smugglers had guns and knives. As the boat pulled out of Tobruk’s concrete port, he told Adiil he was turning his phone off — he did not expect to have a signal again until they arrived.

      After the calls to loved ones stopped, from the foothills of Kashmir to the villages of the Nile Delta, families held their breath.

      It felt, said one relative, like a film that had just stopped halfway through.

      In hometowns and villages, waiting for news

      News of the blue trawler’s capsize trickled out on the morning of June 14. The coast guard’s initial report said that at least 17 people had drowned while noting that more than 100 had been saved. On the Greek mainland, relatives waited for updates in the baking sun outside a migrant reception center. Back in hometowns and villages, some people kept their cellphones plugged into the power sockets so they did not risk missing a call.

      The residents of El Na’amna and Ibrash didn’t know what to do. Police arrested a local smuggler but provided no updates on the whereabouts of the missing. Rumors swirled that most were dead. The mother of 23-year-old Amr Elsayed described a grief so full that she felt as if she were burning.

      A Pakistani community leader in Greece, Javed Aslam, said he was in direct contact with more than 200 families asking for news. Accounts from survivors suggested that almost all the Pakistani passengers, along with many women and children, had been stuck on the lower levels of the boat as it went down.

      Adiil came looking for his brother. He was turned away from the hospital where survivors had been treated, but left his details anyway. Outside the Malakasa reception center, where the survivors were staying, 15 miles north of Athens, several Pakistanis seemed to know Matloob as “the man in the yellow T-shirt.” No one had seen him since the wreck.

      Perhaps it was crazy, Adiil said Thursday, but somehow he still had hope. He had registered his DNA with the local authorities and he had spoken to other families there every day. Now he didn’t know what to do with himself. His eyes were red from crying. He carried creased photographs of his brother in his pocket.

      In one image, Matloob is standing with his dark-eyed daughter, 10-year-old Arfa. Adiil had told the girl that her father was in the hospital, but that fiction was weighing more on him by the day as she kept asking why they couldn’t speak.

      Khalid had been asking for his father, too, but no one knew how to make a 4-year-old understand something they barely understood themselves.

      Nermin, relatives said, was “in bad shape.” She had a funeral to organize without a body. But first she had to take Khalid to the hospital for his biopsy, to learn how far the cancer had spread.


    • ‘If they had left us be, we wouldn’t have drowned:’ CNN investigation raises questions about Greek coast guard’s account of shipwreck tragedy

      The hull of the fishing trawler lifted out of the water as it sank, catapulting people from the top deck into the black sea below. In the darkness, they grabbed onto whatever they could to stay afloat, pushing each other underwater in a frantic fight for survival. Some were screaming, many began to recite their final prayers.

      “I can still hear the voice of a woman calling out for help,” one survivor of the migrant boat disaster off the coast of Greece told CNN. “You’d swim and move floating bodies out of your way.”

      With hundreds of people still missing after the overloaded vessel capsized in the Mediterranean on June 14, the testimonies of those who were onboard paint a picture of chaos and desperation. They also call into question the Greek coast guard’s version of events, suggesting more lives could have been saved, and may even point to fault on the part of Greek authorities.

      Rights groups allege the tragedy is both further evidence and a result of a new pattern in illegal pushbacks of migrant boats to other nations’ waters, with deadly consequences.

      This boat was carrying up to 750 Pakistani, Syrian, Egyptian and Palestinian refugees and migrants. Only 104 people have been rescued alive.

      CNN has interviewed multiple survivors of the shipwreck and their relatives, all of whom have wished to remain anonymous for security reasons and the fear of retribution from authorities in both Greece and at home.

      One survivor from Syria, whom CNN is identifying as Rami, described how a Greek coast guard vessel approached the trawler multiple times to try to attach a rope to tow the ship, with disastrous results.

      “The third time they towed us, the boat swayed to the right and everyone was screaming, people began falling into the sea, and the boat capsized and no one saw anyone anymore,” he said. “Brothers were separated, cousins were separated.”

      Another Syrian man, identified as Mostafa, also believes it was the maneuver by the coast guard that caused the disaster. “The Greek captain pulled us too fast, it was extremely fast, this caused our boat to sink,” he said.

      The Hellenic Coast Guard has repeatedly denied attempting to tow the vessel. An official investigation into the cause of the tragedy is still ongoing.

      Coast guard spokesman Nikos Alexiou told CNN over the phone last week: “When the boat capsized, we were not even next to (the) boat. How could we be towing it?” Instead, he insisted they had only been “observing at a close distance” and that “a shift in weight probably caused by panic” had caused the boat to tip.

      The Hellenic Coast Guard has declined to answer CNN’s specific requests for response to the survivor testimonies.

      Direct accounts from those who survived the wreck have been limited, due to their concerns about speaking out and the media having little access to the survivors. CNN interviewed Rami and Mostafa outside the Malakasa migrant camp near Athens, where journalists are not permitted entry.

      The Syrian men said the conditions on board the migrant boat deteriorated fast in the more than five days after it set off from Tobruk, Libya, in route to Italy. They had run out of water and had resorted to drinking from storage bottles that people had urinated in.

      “People were dying. People were fainting. We used a rope to dip clothes into the sea and use that to squeeze water on people who had lost consciousness,” Rami said.

      CNN’s analysis of marine traffic data, combined with information from NGOs, merchant vessels and the European Union border patrol agency, Frontex, suggests that Greek authorities were aware of the distressed vessel for at least 13 hours before it eventually sank early on June 14.

      The Greek coast guard has maintained that people onboard the trawler had refused rescue and insisted they wanted to continue their journey to Italy. But survivors, relatives and activists say they had asked for help multiple times.

      Earlier in the day, other ships tried to help the trawler. Directed by the Greek coast guard, two merchant vessels – Lucky Sailor and Faithful Warrior – approached the boat between 6 and 9 p.m. on June 13 to offer supplies, according to marine traffic data and the logs of those ships. But according to survivors this only caused more havoc onboard.

      “Fights broke out over food and water, people were screaming and shouting,” Mostafa said. “If it wasn’t for people trying to calm the situation down, the boat was on the verge of sinking several times.”

      By early evening, six people had already died onboard, according to an audio recording reviewed by CNN from Italian activist Nawal Soufi, who took a distress call from the migrant boat at around 7 p.m. Soufi’s communication with the vessel also corroborated Mostafa’s account that people moved from one side of the boat to the other after water bottles were passed from the cargo ships, causing it to sway dangerously.

      The haunting final words sent from the migrant boat came just minutes before it capsized. According to a timeline published by NGO Alarm Phone they received a call, at around 1:45 a.m., with the words “Hello my friend… The ship you send is…” Then the call cuts out.

      The coast guard says the vessel began to sink at around 2 a.m.

      The next known activity in the area, according to marine traffic data, was the arrival of a cluster of vessels starting around 3 a.m. The Mayan Queen superyacht was the first on the scene for what soon became a mass rescue operation.

      A responsibility to rescue

      Human rights groups say the authorities had a duty to act to save lives, regardless of what people on board were saying to the coast guard before the migrant boat capsized.

      “The boat was overcrowded, was unseaworthy and should have been rescued and people taken to safety, that’s quite clear,” UNHCR Special Envoy for the Central Mediterranean Vincent Cochetel told CNN in an interview. “There was a responsibility for the Greek authorities to coordinate a rescue to bring those people safely to land.”

      Cochetel also pointed to a growing trend by countries, including Greece, to assist migrant boats in leaving their waters. “That’s a practice we’ve seen in recent months. Some coastal states provide food, provide water, sometimes life jackets, sometimes even fuel to allow such boats to continue to only one destination: Italy. And that’s not fair, Italy cannot cope with that responsibility alone.”

      Survivors who say the coast guard tried to tow their boat say they don’t know what the aim was.

      There have been multiple documented examples in recent years of Greek patrol boats engaging in so-called “pushbacks” of migrant vessels from Greek waters in recent years, including in a CNN investigation in 2020.

      “It looks like what the Greeks have been doing since March 2020 as a matter of policy, which is pushbacks and trying to tow a boat to another country’s water in order to avoid the legal responsibility to rescue,” Omer Shatz, legal director of NGO Front-LEX, told CNN. “Because rescue means disembarkation and disembarkation means processing of asylum requests.”

      Pushbacks are state measures aimed at forcing refugees and migrants out of their territory, while impeding access to legal and procedural frameworks, according to the Berlin-based European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights (ECCHR). They are a violation of international law, as well as European regulations.

      And such measures do not appear to have deterred human traffickers whose businesses prey on vulnerable and desperate migrants.

      In an interview with CNN last month, then Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis denied that his country engaged in intentional pushbacks and described them as a “completely unacceptable practice.” Mitsotakis is widely expected to win a second term in office in Sunday’s election, after failing to get an outright majority in a vote last month.

      A series of Greek governments have been criticized for their handling of migration policy, including conditions in migrant camps, particularly following the 2015-16 refugee crisis, when more than 1 million people entered Europe through the country.

      For those who lived through last week’s sinking, the harrowing experience will never be forgotten.

      Mostafa and Rami both say they wish they had never made the journey, despite the fact they are now in Europe and are able to claim asylum.

      Most of all, Mostafa says, he wishes the Greek coast guard had never approached their boat: “If they had left us be, we wouldn’t have drowned.”


    • Greece shipwreck survivors faced ’unacceptable’ conditions on arrival in country

      NGOs say survivors of sinking are being held in a closed centre with limited access to psychological support

      Survivors of the Pylos shipwreck, which has left an estimated 500 people missing, faced an “unacceptable” reception in Greece and continue to be held in conditions unsuitable for vulnerable people, NGO workers say.

      The overloaded fishing trawler carrying an estimated 750 people capsized and sank in front of the Greek coastguard last week, following an allegedly botched attempt by the coastguard to tow the vessel.

      The survivors, put at 104 and all men - as no women or children are said to have survived the wreck - were taken to Kalamata, a city on the Peloponnese peninsula, where they were kept in a storage warehouse for two to three days before being transferred to an asylum registration facility at Malakasa, north of Athens.

      “We witnessed an unacceptable reception of extremely vulnerable people in Kalamata,” Eleni Spathanaa, a volunteer lawyer for Refugee Support Aegean, an organisation providing legal advice for the survivors of the wreck, told Middle East Eye.

      Survivors slept on mattresses on the warehouse floor, and the area around it was ringed with fencing. A video posted on Twitter showed a Syrian teenager attempting to embrace his brother through the bars.

      According to Spathanaa, in the first few days no concerted effort was made by authorities to facilitate contact with the survivors’ families, although the Greek Red Cross was providing some access to mobile phones.

      A suffocating experience

      The survivors were transported to a registration facility in Malakasa on 16 and 17 June.

      According to Spathanaa, conditions at #Malakasa are not much of an improvement on those at Kalamata. Survivors are housed in shared shipping containers, and, as at #Kalamata, the facility is ring-fenced, with access severely restricted.

      The prison-like conditions came as a shock.

      “We witnessed... people devastated [and in] shock. They could not even understand where they were,” said Spathanaa. "I could not understand why they were put in a closed centre. Of course, these conditions are not suitable for people who have just survived a shipwreck.

      “These people were [contained], after such a suffocating experience - all of them have lost friends, some of them close relatives... they cannot even conceive what has happened.”

      According to Spathanaa, some of the survivors’ basic needs are not being met at the facility, with some reporting that requests for extra clothing to keep warm at night have been refused. Requests for tea, coffee and cigarettes were also reportedly denied.

      Spathanaa and her colleagues also found that, despite suffering from acute distress, the survivors were being “fast-tracked” through the process of registration for asylum applications.

      “This was quite problematic because most of the people [we met] had not even seen a lawyer before passing through this process,” she said.

      Emergency psychological and medical aid at the facility is being provided by the NGO Doctors Without Borders (MSF). “We saw a lot of distress,” MSF head of mission Sonia Balleron told MEE. “The medical team is clear that [the survivors] are all potentially at risk of PTSD [post-traumatic stress disorder].”

      The team have reported treating chemical burns, injuries from exposure to the sun and sea water, as well as hypo-glycaemic shock (the effect of low blood sugar), due to the people aboard the boat being deprived of food for up to six days.

      According to Balleron, many of the survivors are suffering from sleep disorders and night terrors in the wake of the disaster.

      “What we hear mostly... is people [recalling] seeing their friends dying in front of their eyes,” said Balleron. “They also talk about not knowing who survived and who died, which is causing a lot of stress. Families are calling a lot to try to understand if their relatives are among the survivors or not.”
      A political choice

      For Spathanaa, the conditions experienced by the survivors of the wreck on arrival in Kalamata and Malakasa are no accident, but a “political choice”.

      At the end of 2022, the ESTIA accommodation scheme, an EU funded housing programme for vulnerable asylum seekers, was terminated. The programme, which was started in 2015, was intended to assist families with children, people with disabilities and survivors of torture with suitable housing and medical care.

      When it closed on 16 December, vulnerable asylum seekers were transferred from ESTIA accommodation to remote camps with as little as 24 hours’ notice. Human rights groups warned that the curtailment of the scheme could exacerbate isolation of asylum seekers and “re-traumatise” survivors of violence and torture.

      “We have these vulnerable survivors, and we don’t have the option of sheltering them in dignified and suitable conditions,” said Spathanaa. “I don’t think if the shipwreck’s passengers were tourists, that they would treat them like that. They wouldn’t put them in a warehouse.”

      This is not lost on the international community. Social media posts in the wake of the disaster have highlighted the discrepancy in the efforts by the Greek coastguard to prevent last week’s wreck with the resources expended on recovering the missing Titan submarine in the Atlantic Ocean.

      Widespread protests in Greece over the authorities’ inaction to the disaster have also highlighted the inequities that play out in the waters of the Mediterranean: on 18 June, two cruise ships were greeted at Thessaloniki port with a banner reading: “Tourists enjoy your cruise in Europe’s biggest migrants cemetery.”

      #emprisonnement #survivants

    • On the night of June 14, Captain Richard Kirkby is piloting the Mayan Queen IV, a luxury yacht belonging to a Mexican multibillionaire, through the calm, black waters of the Mediterranean when he receives an emergency call. “Ship sinking. Large number of people. Vessels in the vicinity are requested to initiate search and rescue operations.” The crew hears the screams from people drowning before they can see them.

      The shipwreck that takes place that night would turn out to be the deadliest in the Mediterranean in many years. Around 750 people are thought to have been on board the fishing boat that went down off the coast of the Peloponnese. When the Mayan Queen IV reaches the site at 2:55 a.m., only the lights of another ship can be seen. They belong to the Greek Coast Guard, vessel LS 920 – according to investigation files that DER SPIEGEL and its partners have acquired.

      But the Greeks cannot be reached via radio. So three crew members from the Mayan Queen IV climb into a life boat and start searching for survivors, constantly heading toward the cries for help. They stay as quiet as they can so as not to miss a single voice. Ultimately, they will pull 15 people out of the water.

      Early in the morning, the Greek Coast Guard requests permission to bring additional survivors on board. The Greek vessel is too small to safely bring all the survivors to shore. But the Mayan Queen IV – a ship with four decks, tinted windows and a helicopter landing pad – is large enough. At 7:20 a.m., the yacht sets course for Kalamata. On board are 100 of a total of 104 survivors – migrants wrapped in silver emergency blankets cowering where the super-rich are normally sunning themselves.
      Survivors if the shipwreck in the port of Kalamata: “Ship sinking. Large number of people.”

      Hundreds of refugees don’t survive this night – despite the fact that the Greek Coast Guard arrived at the site several hours before the accident. As early as the morning of the previous day, an Italian agency had sent them a warning and a non-governmental organization had forwarded an SOS from the fishing boat. Even the European Union border control agency Frontex had identified the ship’s plight and offered additional assistance. How can it be that hundreds of migrants died anyway? It is a question that has plagued the Greek Coast Guard for the last two weeks.

      The accusations that survivors have leveled at the Greeks are serious: Did the Coast Guard leave the people to their fate for too long? Were they trying to pull the ship into Italian waters – as some testimony seems to indicate? Perhaps to keep hundreds of migrants from landing in Greece?

      A team of reporters from DER SPIEGEL joined forces with the nonprofit newsroom Lighthouse Reports, investigative journalism consortium Reporters United, the Spanish newspaper El País, the Syrian investigative reporting outlet Siraj and the German public broadcaster ARD to explore these questions. The reporters interviewed survivors, many of whom had already turned to the aid organization Consolidated Rescue Group. They examined leaked investigative reports, videos and geodata and spoke with sources inside Frontex.

      The reporting indicates that, at the very least, the Greek Coast Guard may have made grave errors. Sixteen refugees have accused the Greeks, for example, of causing the fishing boat to capsize, while seven are convinced that Greek rescue attempts were hesitant at best – which would mean they were willing to accept the deaths of hundreds of people. There are also serious doubts about the willingness of Greek authorities to thoroughly investigate the disaster. The leaked investigation reports raise questions as to whether Greek officials may have altered testimony in their favor.

      One of those who survived, we’ll call him Manhal Abdulkareem, tells his story in mid-June from the Greek camp Malakasa. He requests that we not use his real name or even describe him out of fear of how the Greek authorities might react. What he has to say does not paint them in a positive light.

      The Syrian once worked as a stonemason in Jordan. Last spring, he decided to risk the crossing to Italy. He traveled to Libya and boarded the vessel in the port city of Tobruk on June 9. Abdulkareem is one of hundreds of people who crowded onto the vessel, and he was one of the lucky ones: He was able to buy himself a place on deck. Later, it would save his life.

      Other refugees crowded into the boat’s cold storage room. According to survivors, women and children were below decks, many of them from Pakistan. For them, the belly of the ship would turn into a coffin.

      Abdulkareem’s account of the initial days onboard the ship is consistent with the stories told by other survivors. He says that they began running out of water on the third of five days onboard, that the motor cut out on several occasions and that the captain seemed to have lost his orientation. The goal of reaching Italy was more distant than ever.

      The Greek Coast Guard was also aware of the dire situation onboard the fishing boat. On the morning of June 13, they received the first warning from the Italian Coast Guard. Frontex agents filmed the ship from the air at midday. At 5:13 p.m. local time, the non-governmental organization Alarmphone wrote an email to the Greek authorities. The email noted that there were 750 people on the ship. “They are requesting urgent assistance.”

      At the time of the call for help, the fishing vessel was around 80 kilometers (50 miles) off the coast of the Peloponnese. Nevertheless, the Greek Coast Guard sent a ship that was anchored in far-away Crete.

      At least two freighters supplied the fishing vessel with water, but they didn’t take anyone onboard. Abdulkareem and other survivors say that by this point, two passengers on the boat had already died. The Greek Coast Guard ship only arrived at 10:40 p.m.

      There are two versions for what then took place.

      Manhal Abdulkareem reports that the Greek Coast Guard escorted their ship for a time, until the fishing boat’s engine again cut out. Then, he says, the Coast Guard attached a rope to the vessel. “We thought they knew what they were doing,” says Abdulkareem.

      The Coast Guard, he says, towed the vessel at a rapid speed, first to the right, then the left, and then back to the right – and then it capsized. Fifteen additional survivors tell a similar story. Some believe the behavior of the Coast Guard was accidental. Others think it was intentional.

      When the vessel capsized, there were people trapped inside its hull. One survivor says he heard them knocking. Those who were on deck jumped into the water. “People were falling on us,” says one man from Egypt. Some clung to the sinking vessel, while others grabbed in a panic for anything that was floating, including other people.

      “I know how to swim, but that wasn’t enough,” Abdulkareem would later say. He says he had to avoid others so that he wouldn’t be pulled down into the depths. Four survivors say that the Coast Guard put those in the water in even greater danger by maneuvering in such a way that created large waves.

      While still in the water, Abdulkareem began searching for his brother, but was unable to find him. As the vessel was sinking, say survivors, the Greek Coast Guard ship pulled back to a distance of hundreds of meters.

      Abdulkareem and six others accuse the Greeks of delayed rescue efforts and only launching inflatable dinghies after significant time had passed. Some estimate that several minutes passed before they took any action at all. Others say the delay was fully half an hour. “They could have saved many people,” says a survivor from Syria. Abdulkareem’s brother still hasn’t been found.

      The Greek Coast Guard has a competing account for what took place. According to an official log from June 14, their ship reported on the evening prior to the disaster that the refugees were “on a stable course” – a claim that video evidence and tracking data refute. The people on board, according to the official account, rejected assistance because they “wanted nothing more than to continue onward to Italy.” If the Greek Coast Guard is to be believed, the fishing boat capsized shortly after 2 a.m. The first official log provides no cause for the accident.

      Later, the Greek government spokesman said that the Coast Guard had attached a rope to the boat. But only to “stabilize” the vessel. By the time of the accident, the rope had already been cast off, the spokesman said, and the fishing vessel had never been towed. The rope, he insists, was not the cause of the shipwreck. In an interview with CNN, a Coast Guard spokesman speculated that panic may have broken out onboard, leading to the boat listing to one side.

      There is no proof for either version. But doubts about the Greek account are significant, even within Frontex. At the agency’s headquarters in Warsaw, EU border guards can follow in real time what is taking place on the EU’s external borders. In this case, the agents must have realized early on the danger that the migrants were in.

      On two occasions – at 6:35 p.m. and at 9:34 p.m. – they offered to send the airplane back to the ship that the migrants had already seen at midday. It was refueled and ready to take off, according to an internal memo that DER SPIEGEL has obtained. But the Greek Rescue Coordination Center in Piraeus, Frontex says, ignored the offer. The plane remained on the ground.

      The only other available aircraft, a Frontex drone, was initially sent to another distress call, according to Frontex. It only arrived at the scene after the fishing vessel had sunk. In Brussels, hardly anyone believes that the rebuff of Frontex was an accident. Many see a pattern: Greek authorities systematically send away Frontex units, says one Brussels official. That happens particularly often, the official says, in situations that later turn out to be controversial.

      The mistrust with which Athens now finds itself confronted – even from EU institutions – has a lot to do with previous violations of international law on the Aegean. The Greek Coast Guard has repeatedly towed groups of refugees back into Turkish waters – before then abandoning them on life rafts with no means of propulsion.

      Proof for such pushbacks has become so overwhelming that the Frontex fundamental rights officer recently recommended that the organization suspend cooperation with the Greek Coast Guard. The “strongest possible measures” are necessary to ensure that the Greeks once again begin complying with applicable law, reads an internal memo that DER SPIEGEL has obtained. Joint missions can only be resumed once a new basis for trust has been established, the memo continues.

      The skepticism has become so great that Frontex has even sent a team to Greece to question survivors itself. Two Frontex officials say that the results of investigations conducted thus far seem to contradict the Greek version of events. One Greek lawyer is even demanding an official state investigation of the Coast Guard for manslaughter through failure to render aid.

      Most survivors, though, don’t believe that the Greek state will investigate the role played by its own Coast Guard. The treatment they received in the days following the catastrophe was too poor for such optimism.

      Sami Al Yafi, a young Syrian, is one of them. He, too, has asked that his real name not be printed out of fear of the Greek authorities. He accuses the Coast Guard of manipulating his statement. He claims to have clearly testified that the Coast Guard had caused the ship to capsize, but he was unable to find that statement in the transcript of his interview. An additional survivor says that he had a similar experience.

      There are also corresponding inconsistencies in the investigation file. In six instances, according to the file, survivors said nothing about a tow rope in their first interview with the Coast Guard – or at least there is no mention of such in the minutes taken by the Coast Guard. Later, in interviews with public prosecutors, they then accused the Coast Guard of causing the capsizing by towing the vessel.

      Moreover, the minutes taken by the Greek Coast Guard frequently include the exact same formulations. According to those minutes, four survivors used exactly the same words in describing the events – despite the fact that the interviews were led by different interpreters. In one case, a member of the Coast Guard apparently acted as an interpreter.

      When approached for comment, Greek officials said they were unable to comment on the accusations. The accounts, they said, are part of a confidential investigation. They said they were also unable to comment on the actions of the Coast Guard.

      Manhal Abdulkareem, the man who lost his brother, isn’t satisfied. “We are a group of 104 survivors,” he says. All of them know, he says, who caused the boat to capsize.

      On at least one occasion, Greek officials have been found guilty of accusations similar to those that have now been lodged by Abdulkareem and other survivors. It was left up to the European Court of Human Rights to pass that verdict. Last year, the court found that the Greek Coast Guard in 2014 towed a refugee boat until it capsized. Three women and eight children died in that incident. Then, too, the Coast Guard claimed that panic had broken out onboard the vessel and that the refugees themselves had caused the boat to capsize. It is the exact same story they are currently telling.


    • Everyone Knew the Migrant Ship Was Doomed. No One Helped.

      Satellite imagery, sealed court documents and interviews with survivors suggest that hundreds of deaths were preventable.

      From air and by sea, using radar, telephone and radio, officials watched and listened for 13 hours as the migrant ship Adriana lost power, then drifted aimlessly off the coast of Greece in a slowly unfolding humanitarian disaster.

      As terrified passengers telephoned for help, humanitarian workers assured them that a rescue team was coming. European border officials, watching aerial footage, prepared to witness what was certain to be a heroic operation.

      Yet the Adriana capsized and sank in the presence of a single Greek Coast Guard ship last month, killing more than 600 migrants in a maritime tragedy that was shocking even for the world’s deadliest migrant route.

      Satellite imagery, sealed court documents, more than 20 interviews with survivors and officials, and a flurry of radio signals transmitted in the final hours suggest that the scale of death was preventable.

      Dozens of officials and coast guard crews monitored the ship, yet the Greek government treated the situation like a law enforcement operation, not a rescue. Rather than send a navy hospital ship or rescue specialists, the authorities sent a team that included four masked, armed men from a coast guard special operations unit.

      The Greek authorities have repeatedly said that the Adriana was sailing to Italy, and that the migrants did not want to be rescued. But satellite imagery and tracking data obtained by The New York Times show definitively that the Adriana was drifting in a loop for its last six and a half hours. And in sworn testimony, survivors described passengers on the ship’s upper decks calling for help and even trying to jump aboard a commercial tanker that had stopped to provide drinking water.

      On board the Adriana, the roughly 750 passengers descended into violence and desperation. Every movement threatened to capsize the ship. Survivors described beatings and panic as they waited for a rescue that would never come.

      The sinking of the Adriana is an extreme example of a longtime standoff in the Mediterranean. Ruthless smugglers in North Africa cram people onto shoddy vessels, and passengers hope that, if things go wrong, they will be taken to safety. But European coast guards often postpone rescues out of fear that helping will embolden smugglers to send more people on ever-flimsier ships. And as European politics have swung to the right, each new arriving ship is a potential political flashpoint.

      So even as passengers on the Adriana called for help, the authorities chose to listen to the boat’s captain, a 22-year-old Egyptian man who said he wanted to continue to Italy. Smuggling captains are typically paid only when they reach their destinations.

      The Greek Ministry of Maritime Affairs said it would not respond to detailed questions because the shipwreck was under criminal investigation.

      Despite many hours of on-and-off surveillance, the only eyewitnesses to the Adriana’s final moments were the survivors and 13 crew members aboard the coast guard ship, known as the 920. A Maritime Ministry spokesman has said that the ship’s night-vision camera was switched off at the time. Court documents show that the coast guard captain gave the authorities a CD-ROM containing video recordings, but the source of the recordings is unclear, and they have not been made public.

      Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis of Greece defended the coast guard during comments in Brussels this past week, calling its critics “profoundly unfair.” The sinking has brought rare public criticism from officials in the European Union, which has remained silent as the Greek government has hardened its stance toward migrants.

      In Greece, nine Egyptian survivors from the Adriana were arrested and charged with smuggling and causing the shipwreck. In sworn testimonies and interviews, survivors said that many of the nine brutalized and extorted passengers. But interviews with relatives of those accused paint a more complicated picture. At least one of the men charged with being a smuggler had himself paid a full fee of more than $4,000 to be on the ship.

      Collectively paying as much as $3.5 million to be smuggled to Italy, migrants crammed into the Adriana in what survivors recalled was a hellish class system: Pakistanis at the bottom; women and children in the middle; and Syrians, Palestinians and Egyptians at the top.

      An extra $50 or so could earn someone a spot on the deck. For some, that turned out to be the difference between life and death.

      Many of the passengers, at least 350, came from Pakistan, the Pakistani government said. Most were in the lower decks and the ship’s hold. Of them, 12 survived.

      The women and young children went down with the ship.
      Setting Sail

      Kamiran Ahmad, a Syrian teenager, a month shy of his 18th birthday, had arrived in Tobruk, Libya, with hopes for a new life. He had worked with his father, a tailor, after school. His parents sold land to pay smugglers to take him to Italy, praying that he would make it to Germany to study, work and maybe send some money home.
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      “We had no choice but to send him by sea,” his father said in an interview.

      But as the Adriana set sail at dawn on June 9, Kamiran was worried. His cousin, Roghaayan Adil Ehmed, 24, who went with him, could not swim. And the boat was overcrowded, with nearly twice as many passengers as he had been told.

      No life vests were available, so Roghaayan paid $600 to get himself, Kamiran and a friend to an upper deck.

      They were part of a group of 11 young men and boys from Kobani, a mainly Kurdish city in Syria devastated by more than decade of war. The group stayed in dingy, rented rooms in Beirut, Lebanon, then flew to Egypt and on to Libya.

      The youngest, Waleed Mohammad Qasem, 14, wanted to be a doctor. When he heard that his uncle Mohammad Fawzi Sheikhi was going to Europe, he begged to go. On the flight to Egypt, the two smiled for a selfie.

      Haseeb ur-Rehman, 20, a motorcycle mechanic from the Pakistan-administrated Kashmir, felt he had to leave home to help his family survive. Together with three friends, he paid $8,000 and left for Libya.

      He was one of the few Pakistanis who managed to snatch a spot on deck.

      The journey, if all went well, would take three days.

      As early as the second day, survivors recalled, the engine started breaking down.

      By Day 3, food and clean drinking water had run out. Some migrants put dried prunes in seawater, hoping the sweetness would mellow the saltiness. Others paid young men $20 for dirty water.

      Unrest spread as it became clear that the captain, who was spending most of his time on a satellite phone, had lost his way.

      When Pakistanis pushed toward the upper deck, Egyptian men working with the captain beat them, often with a belt, according to testimony. Those men, some of whom are among the nine arrested in Greece, emerged as enforcers of discipline.

      Ahmed Ezzat, 26, from the Nile Delta, was among them. He is accused of smuggling people and causing the shipwreck. In an interview, his brother, Islam Ezzat, said that Ahmed disappeared from their village in mid-May and re-emerged in Libya weeks later. He said a smuggler had sent someone to the family home to collect 140,000 Egyptian pounds, or $4,500, the standard fee for a spot on the Adriana.

      Islam said he did not believe Ahmed had been involved in the smuggling because he had paid the fee. He said the family was cooperating with the Egyptian authorities. Ahmed, like the others who have been charged, has pleaded not guilty.
      ‘They Will Rescue You’

      By Day 4, according to testimonies and interviews, six people in the hold of the ship, including at least one child, had died.

      The next day, June 13, as the Adriana lurched toward Italy between engine breakdowns, migrants on deck persuaded the captain to send a distress call to the Italian authorities.

      The Adriana was in international waters then, and the captain was focused on getting to Italy. Experts who study this migratory route say that captains are typically paid on arrival. That is supported by some survivors who said their fees were held by middlemen, to be paid once they had arrived safely in Italy.

      The captain, some survivors recalled, said the Italian authorities would rescue the ship and take people to shore.

      Just before 1 p.m., a glimmer of hope appeared in the sky. A plane.

      Frontex, the European Union border agency, had been alerted by the Italian authorities that the Adriana was in trouble and rushed to its coordinates. There was no doubt the ship was perilously overloaded, E.U. officials said, and unlikely to make it to any port without help.

      Images of the rusty blue fishing boat appeared in the Frontex command center in Warsaw, where two German journalists happened to be touring, a Frontex spokesman said. The Adriana was a chance to showcase the agency’s ability to detect ships in distress and save lives.

      Now that Frontex had seen the ship, which was in Greece’s search-and-rescue area of international waters, the Greek authorities would surely rush to help.

      Two hours later, a Greek Coast Guard helicopter flew past. Its aerial photographs show the ship’s upper decks crammed with people waving their hands.

      Nawal Soufi, an Italian activist, fielded calls from frantic migrants.

      “I’m sure that they will rescue you,” she told them. “But be patient. It won’t be immediate.”

      Around 7 p.m. on June 13, almost seven hours after Frontex spotted the Adriana, the Greek authorities asked two nearby commercial tankers to bring the migrants water, food and diesel to continue their journey, according to video recordings and court documents.

      A crucial part of the Greek authorities’ explanation for not rescuing the Adriana is their claim that it was actively sailing toward Italy. When the BBC, using data from neighboring vessels, reported that the Adriana had been practically idle for several hours before it sank, the Greek government noted that the ship had covered 30 nautical miles toward Italy since its detection by Frontex.

      But satellite imagery and data from the ship-tracking platform MarineTraffic show that the Adriana was adrift for its final seven hours or so. Radar satellite imagery from the European Space Agency shows that by the time the Greeks summoned the commercial ships, the Adriana had already reached its closest point to Italy.

      From then on, it was drifting backward.

      The first tanker, the Lucky Sailor, arrived within minutes. The second, the Faithful Warrior, arrived in about two and a half hours. The captain of the Faithful Warrior reported that some passengers had thrown back supplies and screamed that they wanted to continue to Italy. How many people actually rejected help is unclear, but they included the Adriana’s captain and the handful of men who terrorized the passengers, according to survivors’ testimonies and interviews.

      Others were placing distress calls. Alarm Phone, a nonprofit group that fields migrant mayday calls, immediately and repeatedly told the Greek authorities, Frontex and the United Nations refugee agency that people on the Adriana were desperate to be rescued. Several passengers testified that they had tried to jump aboard the Faithful Warrior. But the migrants said that the frenzy only destabilized the Adriana, so the Faithful Warrior withdrew.

      As night fell, the Faithful Warrior’s captain told the Greek control center that the Adriana was “rocking dangerously.”

      Radio transmission records show that, over five hours, the Greek control center transmitted five messages across the Mediterranean using a channel reserved for safety and distress calls.

      Henrik Flornaes, a Danish father of two on a yacht far from the area, said he heard two mayday relay signals that night. They provided coordinates near the location of the Adriana, he said.

      A mayday relay directs nearby ships to begin a search and rescue.

      But the Greek Coast Guard itself mounted no such mission at this point.
      An End Foretold

      As midnight of June 14 approached, the Greek Coast Guard vessel 920, the only government ship dispatched to the scene, arrived alongside the Adriana.

      The presence of the 920 did not reassure the migrants. Several said in interviews that they were unsettled by the masked men. In the past, the Greek government has used the coast guard to deter migration. In May, The Times published video footage showing officers rounding up migrants and ditching them on a raft in the Aegean Sea.

      The mission of the 920 is unclear, as is what happened after it arrived and floated nearby for three hours. Some survivors say it tried to tow the Adriana, capsizing it. The coast guard denied that at first, then acknowledged throwing a rope to the trawler, but said that was hours before it sank.

      To be sure, attempts to remove passengers might have backfired. Sudden changes in weight distribution on an overcrowded, swaying ship could have capsized it. And while the 920 was larger was than the Adriana, it was not clear if had space to accommodate the migrant passengers.

      But Greece, one of the world’s foremost maritime nations, was equipped to carry out a rescue. Navy ships, including those with medical resources, could have arrived in the 13 hours after the Frontex alert.

      Exactly what capsized the ship is unclear. The coast guard blames a commotion on the ship. But everyone agrees that it swayed once to the left, then to the right, and then flipped.

      Those on deck were tossed into the sea. Panicking people stepped on each other in the dark, desperately using each other to come up for air, to stay alive.

      At the water’s surface, some clung to pieces of wood, surrounded by drowned friends, relatives and strangers. Others climbed onto the ship’s sinking hull. Coast guard crew members pulled dozens of people from the sea. One person testified that he had initially swum away from the 920, fearing that the crew would drown him.

      Waleed Mohammad Qasem, the 14-year-old who wanted to be a doctor, drowned. So did his uncle, who had posed with him for a selfie. The ship’s captain also died.

      Hundreds of people, including the women and young children, inside the Adriana stood no chance. They would have been flipped upside down, hurled together against the ship as the sea poured in. The ship took them down within a minute.

      Haseeb ur-Rehman, the Pakistani motorcycle mechanic on the top deck, survived. “It was in my destiny,” he said from a migrant camp near Athens. “Otherwise, my body would have been lost, like the other people in the boat.”

      Near the end, Kamiran Ahmad, the teenager who had hoped to study in Germany, turned to his cousin Roghaayan. From the migrant center in Greece, the older cousin remembered his words: “Didn’t I tell you we were going to die? Didn’t I tell you we were already dead?”

      Both went into the water. Kamiran’s body has not been recovered.


  • Numéro 387 : Disparu en #Méditerranée

    En 2015, près de mille migrants disparaissent dans un naufrage en Méditerranée. Depuis, une équipe de chercheurs tente de retrouver leur identité. Un documentaire pudique et fort aux confins de l’indicible.

    C’est la tragédie la plus meurtrière en Méditerranée depuis la Seconde Guerre mondiale. Le 18 avril 2015, un bateau fantôme convoyant entre 800 et 1100 migrants coule au large des côtes libyennes. Très peu d’entre eux survivent. Qui étaient les disparus, d’où venaient-ils ? Comment leur redonner une identité et honorer leur mémoire ? Très vite, le gouvernement italien de Matteo Renzi prend la décision inédite de renflouer l’épave pour identifier les victimes. À Milan, l’anthropologue légiste Cristina Cattaneo travaille sur les 528 corps retrouvés et mène la plus vaste opération d’identification jamais entreprise en Méditerranée. En Afrique, José Pablo Baraybar, pour le CICR (Comité international de la Croix-Rouge), rencontre les familles des disparus pour obtenir le plus d’informations ante mortem possibles, et recueillir leur ADN qui permettra à Cristina Cattaneo de croiser les résultats. En Sicile, la chercheuse Georgia Mirto arpente les cimetières à la recherche des tombes des disparus...


    #mourir_en_mer #identification #morts #morts_aux_frontières #mourir_aux_frontières #migrations #asile #réfugiés #naufrage #identification #épave #Cristina_Cattaneo #restes #médecine_légale #justice #droits_humains #Giorgia_Mirto #cimetières #cimetière #Sicile #Italie #pacte_migratoire #pacte_de_Marrakech #cadavres #traçabilité #enterrement #coopération_internationale #celleux_qui_restent #celles_qui_restent #ceux_qui_restent #dignité #survivants #mer_Méditerranée #vidéo


    Ils utilisent hélas les statistiques des morts de l’OIM au lieu d’utiliser celles de United :

    « L’OIM rapporte que la route de l’immigration la plus meurtrière au monde est la route de la Méditerranée centrale (...) L’agence explique que malgré la baisse du nombre de morts, la proportion de décès, rapportée aux tentatives de traversée, a augmenté en 2019 par rapport aux années précédentes. Signe peut-être que les embarcations qui partent sont plus précaires et que les personnes et les passeurs prennent plus de risques. » Ils donnent ensuite le chiffre d’un 1/100, ratio morts/départs.
    –-> embarcations plus précaires et plus de prise de risque ne sont pas une fatalité mais une conséquence des politiques migratoires restrictives et meurtrières de l’UE et ses Etats membres.

  • J’aimerais revenir sur la polémique #Kanata / #Robert_Lepage qui n’a finalement presque pas été abordée sur Seenthis, et donc peut-être pas assez en France (pourtant ça rappelle une polémique en France, avec #Exhibit_B.), sauf ici :

    Robert Lepage a décidé dans cette dernière pièce de traiter de l’histoire du Canada, et donc des #autochtones, sans actrices ou acteurs autochtones, mais même sans consulter la ou le moindre autochtone pendant la genèse de la pièce.

    Alors, laissons d’abord la parole à Maya Cousineau-Mollen :

    Kanata : Maya Cousineau-Mollen, entre espoir et tristesse
    Radio Canada, le 17 décembre 2018

    Elle s’explique aussi ici en vidéo sur Le Média, le 23 décembre 2018 :

    Mais, avant de revenir là dessus, rajoutons le contexte qui manque un peu. Alors qu’il annonce la sortie de cette pièce à Montréal en été 2018, il vient de subir une autre controverse avec sa pièce #Slav, consacrée aux chants d’esclaves #noirs, avec aucun.e chanteu.se.r noir ni aucun.e noir.e consultée pendant la génèse de la pièce. Présentée pendant le Festival de Jazz de Montréal, un tonnerre de protestation a conduit le Festival à annuler la pièce après les quelques premières représentations. J’en avais un peu parlé ici :

    Peu de gens s’en souviennent, mais en 2001, Robert Lepage avait présenté sa pièce #Zulu_Time où des personnes de nombreuses origines sont représentées, mais où là encore, neuf des dix membres de la troupe étaient des Québécois blancs, le dixième étant d’origine péruvienne. De plus, les représentations étaient stéréotypées, en position d’infériorité par rapport aux personnages blancs. Des femmes provenant apparemment du Moyen-Orient ou du sous-continent indien étaient placés dans des rôles de servitude et d’assujettissement. Enfin, la seule représentation d’un homme noir, jouée par un comédien blanc, arborait un maquillage corporel noir, portant le costume traditionnel d’un guerrier zoulou, avec couvre-chef, torse nu, lance et bouclier, et dont la pièce établissait un parallèle avec le personnage du singe, joué par l’acteur d’origine péruvienne.

    Bref, pour en revenir à Kanata et à 2018, comme le rappelle Maya Cousineau-Mollen, bien qu’il y ait des critiques, il n’y a pas d’appel à l’annulation ou à la censure. Ce sont les producteurs de la pièce qui se retirent, ne voulant pas être mêlés à une telle controverse.

    C’est alors que dans sa grande mansuétude, qui démontre aussi à quel point le débat est en retard en #France sur ces questions, qu’ #Ariane_Mnouchkine décide d’offrir son #Théâtre_du_Soleil de la #Cartoucherie de Vincennes à Robert Lepage pour qu’il y monte une versions légèrement modifiée de sa pièce, et donc tout aussi critiquable. On en est là.

    #appropriation_culturelle #racisme #invisibilisation #Spectacle #Théâtre #Canada

  • Vu sur FB (et confirmé sur le site des #Survivants, campagne anti-avortement en cours sur les supports J.-C. Decaux à Paris…

    Bob Marley, Zizou, Simone Veil, Vivaldi, Gutenberg, Matisse, Bourvil, Gandhi... L’histoire du monde entier regorge de personnalités qui marquent et qui remarquent.

    (annonce du 15 juin)

    L’ensemble des visuels était disponible au téléchargement mais ils ont été retirés de WeTransfer. Peut-être parce qu’ils comportaient l’énaurme faute d’orthographe des affiches placardées dans Paris
    (ici arrêt de bus Rambuteau)

  • Migrants of the Mediterranean

    Migrants of the Mediterranean profiles the people who have crossed continents, countries, desert and sea to reach a life of freedom, safety and opportunity, and specifically those whose first stop in European territory is Lampedusa, the tiny Italian island south of mainland Sicily.

    The first step in fixing a problem is to be aware of it. The purpose, then, of Migrants of the Mediterranean is to introduce migrants as individuals, to see their faces, and after having met them, to develop a higher level of empathy for them as people, and to develop a heightened awareness of the greater global migrant crisis.

    Migrants of the Mediterranean, in short, aims to restore a piece of humanity to the people who in the course of their journeys have had it stripped away.

    Each profile details the migrant’s individual journey: the means and routes taken, the length of time it took to reach Lampedusa, and the incredible and often inhumane difficulties each one encountered to finally reach this Italian shore.


    #témoignages #migrations #asile #réfugiés #Lampedusa #Méditerranée #survivants #Italie
    cc @reka

  • Quelques #cartes vues au #musée et #mémoriel du #génocide cambodgien (1975-1979)

    L’expulsion de la population de la ville de Phnom Pehn a eu lieu en 3 jours. En 3 jours seulement pratiquement aucune personne ne vivait plus à Phnom Pehn, les #Khmer_Rouges avaient organisé l’expulsion dans les campagnes. L’#homme_nouveau devait renaître de là, des campagnes. Il ne faut pas oublier qu’après des années de bombardements sur le Camodge de la part de l’armée des Etats-Unis, un nombre important de réfugiés s’étaient réfugiés dans la capitale. La ville étaient donc peuplée de personnes nées à Phnom Pehn plus un nombre important de déplacés internes. Tout ce monde a été évacué en 3 jours.

    #Phnom_Pehn #S-21 #camp_d'extermination #prison #migrations_forcées #expulsions #cartographie #visualisation #flèches #génocide_cambodgien

    #Tuol_sleng genocide museum


  • Smuggler or survivor? Migrants forced to help, face arrest

    PACHINO, Sicily (AP) — All migrant Marc Samie has of his fiancee is a picture in his mind. Louise, seven and a half months pregnant, is standing silently on a beach in Libya, tears rolling down her face as traffickers force him at gunpoint into a rubber dinghy with a compass.

    “(We are) making the arrests at what I would define as the lowest level, the so-called smugglers, the ones who drive the boats and who are often migrants,” he said. “They risk their lives together with the others.”

    #smugglers #passeurs #victimes #catégorisation #asile #migrations #réfugiés #survivants

  • Mise à jour de :

    Plusieurs articles abordent la question du vocabulaire. Faut-il les appeler migrants, réfugiés, sans-papiers, demandeurs d’asile, exilés...? Les avis sont partagés

    Réfugiés ? Migrants ? Abrités ? Accueillis ? Apatrides ? Arabes ? Aventuriers ? Binationaux ? Capital humain ? Cerveaux en fuite ? Chercheurs de Paix ? Chercheurs de Refuge ? Circulants ? Clandestins ? Clandestins Non Identifiés ? Coupables ? Coupables de voyage ? Criminels ? Criminels Illégaux ? Crimmigrés ? Cueilleurs de Fraises ? Déboutés ? Demandeurs d’asile ? Demandeurs de refuge ? Déplacés ? Déplacés Internes ? Déplacés Poétiques ? Désespérés ? Diamants Noirs ? Dreamers ? Dublinés ? Égarés ? Éjectés ? Éjectés Volontaires ? Emigrants ? Envahisseurs ? Errants ? Esclaves ? Etrangers ? ESIs ? Exilés ? Exodants ? Exode de cerveau ? Expatriés ? Fugitifs ? Héros ? Illégaux ? Illégaux en Transit ? Illégalisés ? Immigrants ? Immigrés ? Immigrés choisis ? INADs ? Indésirables ? Infiltrés ? Intrus ? Invisibles ? Invités ? Irréguliers ? Marcheurs ? Main d’oeuvre ? Maintenus ? Messagers ? Migrants climatiques ? Migrants éco-climatiques ? Migrants économiques ? Migrants environnementaux ? Migrants Internationaux ? Migrants Rapatriés ? Migrants Revenus ? Migrants Secondaires ? Migrants Volatilisés ? Migrérrants ? Mijeurs ? Musulmans ? Naufragés ? Navetteurs ? Nouveaux Européens ? Persécutés ? Personnes en migration ? Population Migratoire ? Rapatriés ? Rapatriés en Bilan ? Réfugiés présumés ? Réfugiés aigus ? Réfugiés climatiques ? Réfugiés environnementaux ? Réfugiés Illégalisés ? Réfugiés Irréguliers ? Réfugiés Sans Papiers ? Réfugiés Travaillant ? Rejoignants ? Rescapés ? Retenus ? Retournés ? Revenus ? Sans Autorisation ? Sans Papiers ? Sans-Paps ? Sans Permission ? Sans Statut ? Survivants ? Terroristes ? Touristes ? Touristes Clandestins ? Transitants ? Transmigrants ? Travailleurs Itinérants ? Travailleurs Migrants ? Travailleurs Réfugiés ? Turcs ? Vacanciers ? Vent du Désert ? Victimes collatérales ? Vocation à Quitter le Territoire ? Voyageurs ? Êtres Humains ?

    Et faut-il ajouter des guillemets à ces termes ?

    ESI = Etrangers en Situation Irrégulière
    INAD = étrangers non-admis sur le territoire français et interpellés à leur descente de l’avion
    Mijeurs = mineurs déclarés majeurs par les autorités

    Aussi : Mineurs Migrants ? Mineurs Migrants Non Accompagnés ? Mineurs Etrangers Non Accompagnés ? Mijeurs ? Migrants Mineurs Isolés ? Mineurs Isolés ? Mineurs Non Accompagnés ? et même Bébés Passeport ?

    D’autres spécifiquement en anglais comme aspiring migrants, climate-movers, deportees, dreamers, ICE_detainee, illegalized refugees, returnable migrants, returnee migrants, returnees, returning migrants, undocumented refugees...

    En italien : capsunari (cueilleurs de fraises)

    Et d’autres mots encore plus spécifiques, comme Habesha qui désignent au Soudan ceux qui ne parlent pas arabe, donc les Abyssins, les Éthiopiens et les Érythréens, donc en fait les migrants...

    Les Libyens appellent les migrants érythréens Dollars ou Euros selon qu’ils ont de la famille (supposée riche) en Europe ou en Amérique du Nord...

    Et Libia, surnom donné aux nouveaux arrivants d’Erythrée par les Erythréens de la diaspora, installés depuis longtemps en Italie...

    Refuweegee : réfugié bien intégré à Glasgow

    Au Vénézuela, certains peuples autochtones n’ont pas de mot pour désigner un migrant, et ils les appellent donc des caminantes, c’est à dire des marcheurs...

    #migrants #réfugiés #sans-papiers #demandeurs_d_asile #exilés #Syrie #Guerre #Tragédie #terminologie #vocabulaire #mots #asile #migrations #mineurs_non_accompagnés #recension

    « Emigration illégale » : une notion à bannir
    Claire Rodier, Libération, le 13 juin 2006

    L’archétype rêvé du réfugié
    Karen Akoka, Plein droit, octobre 2011

    Figures de l’Étranger : quelles représentations pour quelles politiques ?
    GISTI, avril 2013

    « Le réfugié est une notion fabriquée au gré des priorités politiques »
    Carine Fouteau, Médiapart, le 12 juin 2013

    Le demandeur d’asile n’existe pas
    Michael Pfeiffer, Vivre Ensemble, le 25 juin 2013

    Are they illegal or illegalized ?
    Nicholas Keung, The Star, le 17 août 2013

    La Cimade et les Portugais en France de 1957 à 1974 : une aide sous le signe des guerres coloniales
    Victor Pereira, Presses universitaires de Paris Ouest, 2013

    Immigrants illégaux, détections, murs de barbelés : le vocabulaire lamentable de FRONTEX commence à déteindre…
    J.Caye, Forum Asile, le 22 mai 2014

    D’ « opposants » à « clandestins » : le parcours médiatique des personnes migrantes
    Raphaël Rey et Sophie Malka, Vivre Ensemble, le 28 mai 2014

    « Les messagers », documentaire d’Hélène Crouzillat et Laetitia Tura (2014).

    Sans-papiers, sans clichés ! (ou comment écrire de manière éthique sur les migrants)
    Café Babel, le 27 mars 2015

    Expatriation. Les Blancs sont des expats, les autres sont des immigrés !
    Silicon Africa, le 29 mai 2015

    Le danger d’assimiler trafic de migrants et traite humaine
    Natalia Paszkiewicz, Middle East Eye, le 4 juin 2015

    Réfugiés ou migrants : faut-il inventer un nouveau terme ?
    IRIN, le 17 juin 2015

    Is "Expat" the New White ?
    Denis Colombi, Une Heure de Peine, le 30 juin 2015

    Réfugiés, intrusion, hotspots : le nouveau lexique des migrations
    Carine Fouteau, Médiapart, le 10 août 2015

    Europe. Ne les appelez plus des “migrants” !
    Al-Jazira, le 25 août 2015

    « Migrant » ou « réfugié » : quelles différences ?
    Alexandre Pouchard, Le Monde, le 25 août 2015

    Le « migrant », nouveau visage de l’imaginaire français
    Sylvia Zappi, Le Monde, le 26 août 2015

    « Migrants », « réfugiés » : sur le sujet sensible des migrations, le choix des mots n’est pas neutre
    AFP, le 27 août 2015

    Quand doit-on parler de migrants, de réfugiés ou de demandeurs d’asile ?
    IRIN, le 28 août 2015

    Le débat sur les termes "migrants" et "réfugiés" agite la presse
    RTS, le 28 août 2015

    « Réfugiés » au lieu de « migrants » : une terminologie à revoir
    J. Caye, Forum Asile, le 31 août 2015

    Point de vue du HCR : « Réfugié » ou « migrant » ? Quel est le mot juste ?
    UNHCR, le 31 août 2015

    Migrants perdus en mer. Ce sont nos enfants
    Aminata D. Traoré, Le Monde Diplomatique, Septembre 2015

    Débat sémantique : une distraction dangereuse ?
    Melissa Phillips, IRIN, le 1er septembre 2015

    Ne dites plus « migrant »
    Jean Quatremer, Libération, le 4 septembre 2015

    La distinction entre réfugiés et migrants économiques ne va pas de soi
    Céline Mouzon, Alter Eco, le 11 septembre 2015

    Le discours sur les réfugiés syriens : un analyseur
    Saïd Bouamama, le 11 septembre 2015

    "Migrants" ou "réfugiés" ? L’indignation est mauvaise conseillère
    Michaël Neuman, Médiapart, le 11 septembre 2015

    "La distinction entre ’bons’ réfugiés et ’mauvais’ migrants n’est pas tenable"
    Laura Thouny, L’Obs, le 12 septembre 2015

    Demandeurs d’asile ou sans-papiers ?
    Paris-Luttes Info, le 13 septembre 2015

    Philippe Leclerc : « Le statut de réfugié a été trop difficile à créer pour qu’on risque la confusion »
    Sonya Faure, Libération, le 13 septembre 2015

    Pourquoi je n’userai pas du terme "réfugié"
    Paris-Luttes Info, le 15 septembre 2015

    En Europe, l’accueil des « réfugiés » se fait au détriment des « migrants économiques »
    Carine Fouteau, Médiapart, le 17 septembre 2015

    Contre la logique du tri : pour un droit d’asile et au séjour, pour tous et toutes, maintenant !
    Solidaires, le 17 septembre 2015

    « Le pape appelle à repenser le droit d’asile »
    Michaël Hajdenberg, Médiapart, le 22 septembre 2015

    Migrant, réfugié : quelles différences ?
    Laure Cailloce, Le Journal du CNRS, le 22 septembre 2015

    La fin du voyage
    Serge Quadruppani, Les Contrées Magnifiques, le 23 septembre 2015

    Vivre Ensemble
    Septembre 2015

    NB : et la version réac :

    Migrant ou réfugié ?
    Christian Rioux, Le Devoir (Montréal), le 15 mai 2015

    De l’utilité des frontières
    Christian Rioux, Le Devoir (Montréal), le 8 septembre 2017


  • #Naufrage en #Méditerranée : les survivants racontent

    Der Spiegel a recueilli la parole de #survivants du naufrage d’une embarcation de migrants au large de Malte le 15 septembre, dans lequel 500 personnes sont mortes. Le journal pointe la responsabilité des passeurs, mais aussi celle de l’Union européenne.

    #témoignage #mourir_en_mer #migration #asile #Forteresse_Europe #réfugiés #politique_migratoire

  • Coast guard rejects blame for migrant sea tragedy

    The coast guard on Wednesday rebuffed reports that one of its vessels had been towing a boat full of would-be immigrants back to Turkey when a number of the passengers fell into the sea, resulting in several drownings, following criticism from international bodies over the incident.


    #Méditerranée #mourir_en_mer #Grèce #décès #mort #tragédie #responsabilité #mer #migration #Mer_Egée