|Statewatch article: RefNo# 37199
|Statewatch News Online, October 2016
|- USING THE ISLANDS AS HOLDING CENTRES: Greece: Minister admits gov't struggling to tackle migration (ekathimerini.com, link):
"Greek authorities face a range of problems in dealing with the refugee crisis, Immigration Policy Minister Yiannis Mouzalas admitted in comments to Parliament on Friday while calling on opposition parties to back the government’s efforts to tackle the crisis.
“It is true that we overburdened certain municipalities,” Mouzalas said, conceding that northern Greece has borne a large share of the burden.... “Islanders are struggling to deal with overpopulation,” he said, referring to thousands of migrants in crowded camps.
Responding to the calls of mayors on the islands for migrants to be transferred to the mainland, Mouzalas said only unaccompanied minors and people who are protected from deportation will be transferred to the mainland.
Transferring all migrants to the mainland could undermine a deal between the European Union and Turkey to curb human smuggling in the Aegean."
- You Syrious (1.10.16, link)
Arrivals of boat refugees to Greece continues
Lesvos: 21, Chios: 103, Samos: 29: Total: 153 and 3 voluntary returns
Reports that police harassed refugee kids in Athens to be probed
"A prosecutor has ordered a preliminary investigation into reports that five refugee children were harassed by officers at a police station in Omonia Square in the center of Athens last Tuesday.
According to reports, the five minors, aged between 9 and 14, were stopped in the street by officers and taken to the local precinct because they were carrying bags containing plastic guns and costumes for a theatrical show.
They were detained for seven hours, during which time the children said they were subjected to sexual innuendos, racist comments and other humiliating treatment. The minors also said that during their detention they shared a cell with drug addicts and other criminals, and did not have access to drinking water."
Calais closure confirmed, volunteers and refugees protest the demolitions, only to be met by police violence
"The Calais camp in France is home to 9,000 of the Europe’s most vulenrable refugees. A week ago, French President Francois Hollande has confirmed plans to close this camp, with but a fleeting idea of where these people will go after the camp closes....
Police was allowed to prevent volunteers from coming to Calais as protesting about anything concerning the refugees was forbidden on Thursday by the prefect, thus denying volunteers and refugees two important human rights: to move and to protest.... The demonstrators were met by police water cannons, flash balls, pepper spray and teargas. The police blocked the demonstration and repeat the well used refrain “Go back to the jungle”; the jungle the Europe itself created."
See also: French police fire tear gas at pro-migrant protesters in Calais (Daily Sabah, link)
- Italian police clear out Via Cupa migrant camp in Rome (DW, link):
"Activists have criticized Rome's city council for not providing alternative housing for migrants displaced after police cleared a camp in the Italian capital. Italy is on the front line for irregular migration to the EU."
- FRANCE: In Calais, a rising wall reinforces fears of fortress Europe (DW, link):
"A planned wall near the French port of Calais aims to deter migrants from ambushing trucks bound for Britain, but many see the construction as a darker symbol of Europe's rising barriers against asylum seekers."
- GERMANY-GREECE: De Maiziere urges Athens to implement Dublin rules (ekathimerini.com, link):
"Germany Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere has repeated his call for Greece to implement the so-called Dublin regulations, which state that migrants must seek asylum in the European Union member-state they first arrived in.
Due to deficiencies in Greece’s asylum processing system and the large number of migrants and refugees arriving in the country, Berlin has suspended deportations back to Greece since 2011....
“That is why I would like to see the Dublin Convention implemented again,” he said."
- Are You Syrious (30.9.16):
CROATIA: Increase of returns from Austria according to Dublin, no one mentions new accommodation facilities
"Forced returns of refugees from the other EU countries, mainly from Austria, are undergoing according to Dublin regulations. Groups of refugees are being returned on daily basis now, many without the opportunity to pack and bring their belongings with them, leaving them feeling even more humiliated and afraid. Both Porin centre in Zagreb and the refugee centre in Kutina have reached their capacities, but the government is still not mentioning the opening of any additional facilities to accommodate returning refugees. This need to be addressed because the current facilities can barely accommodate few hundreds of returning refugees, and Croatia has already received requests to receive around 3,500 returning refugees according to Dublin."
ITALY: Refugees, volunteers evicted from Baobab centre
"Today, police has sent away all Baobab Experience volunteers from via Cupa in Rome and entered the Civico 1 building, which was abandoned and squatted since December. The reason given by the commissioner Tronca for the closure of the old Baobab centre is that the authorities want to give back the property to the legal owner. The refugees are now left on the streets. According to volunteer sources, some have been taken to the police headquarters for questioning. Police was taking down donated tents and food today. There’s still no alternative location to host ex residents of via Cupa, so our friends from Baobab are inviting all of the available people to join them in via Cupa and help protesting and stopping the eviction."
Protests, public appeals following arrests and mistreatment of refugee children in Athens
"A protest was held in Athens today, in the wake of appalling mistreatment of the children’s theatre group from Jasmine school, who were arrested, stripped down, humiliated and detained for 7 hours after being intercepted on their way to a theatre play, wearing military costumes and toy guns. The incident occurred three days ago, on Tuesday 27 September. The children were stopped and searched by four police officers on motorbikes, who called more officers for support, before being taken to Omonoia police station. Following the arrest, 5 children aged between 12 and 14, and two young refugees aged 20 and 22, were reportedly forced to strip off their clothes and walk around the small room in circles, and those who refused to remove their underwear were beaten and verbally assaulted by the police officers."
See also: Greece: Syrian refugee children detained for carrying toy guns allegedly ill-treated by police (AI, link)
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