Statewatch article: RefNo# 36632
Refugee crisis: latest news from across Europe (11-12.6.16)
Statewatch News Online, June 2016
- EU: Council of the European Union: Central Med Route, Relocation and IPCR

- Central Mediterranean route (LIMITE doc no: 8624-16, pdf) Written on 3 May before the arrival of thousands of refugees in Italy:

"due to the limited reception capacity in the hotspots, migrants are being transferred to larger reception centres. Due to the large number of migrants not eligible for international protection, the anticipated increase in arrivals during the summer months and difficulties with enforcing effective return, the pool of migrants in Italy and possibly Malta and elsewhere may increase. Without agreements on return, this will create an additional burden on those countries to handle the situation. All EU Member States have a responsibility to assist in this matter. Additionally, for the relatively small number of migrants eligible for relocation, continued and urgent efforts are still required."

- COUNCIL DECISION amending Decision (EU) 2015/1601 establishing provisional measures in the area of international protection for the benefit of Italy and Greece (LIMITE doc no: 8330-16, pdf):

"Member States may choose to meet their obligation by admitting to their territory Syrian nationals present in Turkey under national or multilateral legal admission schemes for persons in clear need of international protection, other than the resettlement scheme which was the subject of the Conclusions of the Representatives of the Governments of the Member States meeting within the Council of 20 July 2015. The number of persons so admitted by a Member State shall lead to a corresponding reduction of the obligation of the respective Member State."

- Refugee and Migration Crisis focused analysis of the use of the IPCR Web Platform between period of 1 October 2015 to 30 April 2016 (LIMITE doc no: 9398-16, pdf):

"Refugee and Migration Crisis focused analysis of the use of the IPCR Web Platform

This report presents an analysis of the use of the IPCR Web Platform with a specific emphasis on the Refugee and Migration crisis page. The creation of the monitoring page on this topic dates back to September 10, 2015. The IPCR was then activated in information sharing mode on October 30, 2015, leading to the creation of the crisis page (de facto replacing the monitoring page). The IPCR activation was then upgraded to full mode on November 9, 2015. The timeframe of the present analysis ranges from October 1, 2015 to April 30, 2016."


Note: It was not until 30 October 2015 that the Council Presidency launched this initiative: "The Council has taken over the last weeks a number of decisions to respond to the current migratory crisis. The scale of migratory flows has demonstrated the need for a more coordinated information sharing. The Luxembourg Presidency therefore decided on 30 October 2015 to trigger the Integrated Political Crisis Response (IPCR) arrangements on an "information sharing mode". The aim is to monitor the development of migratory flows, to support decision making and to better implement the agreed measures."

See: Another step after months and months of dithering: Entropy or incompetence? IPCR (Integrated Political Crisis Response) is the joint responsibility of the European Commission and European External Action Service (EEAS): Council of the European Union Press release: 30 October: Migratory crisis: EU Council Presidency steps up information sharing between member states by activating IPCR (pdf).

- Are You Syrious (link)

GREECE

"EASO has been controlling the entry of refugees’ lawyers into the Moria camp, who need to specify exactly with whom they are going to talk and about what subject, violating the attorney-client privilege.

Furthermore it is often not a Greek civil servant that asks the questions but someone from a private security company or an EASO expert. Last Tuesday, one of these Easo experts prohibited some laywers of entering the camp which clearly goes beyond their mandate and violates national legislation on lawyers’ status. This Easo expert was brought to the police station but was released later on. The lawyers have filed charges and investigations are ongoing."


ITALY: Dozens continue to arrive in Italy, with a significant portion of them being unaccompanied minors

"These children are limited from the view of journalists and other watchdog entities. The number of children has climbed over 129% according to a recent study. For more information on the plight of refugee children in Italy, please explore this
New York Times article."


- UNIVERSITY OF BRISTOL: UK: Sanctuary Scholarship Scheme (link):

"Extending educational opportunity to people from asylum seeking and refugee communities. What is it? The scheme offers scholarships to people from refugee and asylum seeking communities to study at University. The scholarship offers support towards the costs of Higher Education."

- New FRONTEX agency: satellite reconnaissance and drones over the Mediterranean (digit.site36.net/, link) by Matthias Monroy:

"The EU is taking its maritime surveillance to a new level. The three agencies responsible for coastal and maritime surveillance are to be merged. 81 million euros has been earmarked for unmanned aerial vehicles alone, with hundreds of millions also being spent on the necessary satellite capabilities. The money is flowing into the coffers of arms companies."

- Greece: Gov't plans 12 more centers for migrants in central Greece (ekathimerini.com, link):

"The government has announced the creation of 12 additional migrant accommodation centers in central Greece and its intention to reconstruct shelters at Koutsohero in Larissa, Katsika in Ioannina and Ritsona in Evia – three centers beset with serious structural problems... His remarks came amid growing anger at living conditions at migrant centers around the country and increasingly louder protests from local residents....

The latest official estimate puts the number of migrants throughout Greece at 57,112.

Of this number 5,509 are staying at shelters and structures managed by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), 8,197 are on islands in the eastern Aegean and 14,830 are in Attica – with the port of Piraeus providing temporary shelter to 1,397 while there are more than 3,600 refugees at the three shelters in Elliniko and 3,000 at Skaramanga.

In central Greece, there are 2,155, 283 in southern Greece and 26,139 in northern Greece (Macedonia and Epirus)."


- News (11-12.6.16)

Refugees in Elliniko expressed mixed feelings about pre-registration as the first phase of the operation got underway at the three sites this week (News That Moves, link): "On June 8, teams from the Greek Asylum Service started issuing wristbands to people as part of a process to pre-register applications for asylum, family reunification and relocation to another EU state. Afghans, who make up more than 90 per cent of the population at the three Elliniko sites, are not currently eligible for the EU relocation program, but may be eligible to apply for family reunification. Registering for asylum is a prerequisite for applying for either program."

Refugees In Lesvos: “We Reached Breaking Point” (News That Moves, link): "Refugees on the island of Lesvos say they have reached breaking point and more antisocial behaviour is inevitable unless their situation improves.."

Eritrean accused of being people smuggling kingpin says he is innocent (Guardian,link): "Man in custody in Italy after being extradited by Sudan tells lawyer he is not Medhanie Mered but Medhanie Berhe"

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