Accounts from the Inside: The Detention Centres of Evros
new report by Pro Asyl
Obviously, Europe’s main concern is the creation of »walls« in order to hinder or to prevent the access to its territory. Physical walls like the fence, the moat and border controls in Evros but also invisible walls that are constituted by the lack of protection to those in need, rights denials, systematic detention, detention and living conditions violating human dignity, Readmission Agreements and the Dublin II Regulation. The effects of these heightening walls have their most tragic face in the many lost and dead at border. This is why we chose to speak about walls of shame in this report.
Walls of Shame (download report in English)
New report of Infomobile Greece, published in January 2012
LOST AT BORDER reports on the reality of loss and death at the Greek borders. As a close friend of ours said once: “If you are a refugee and you die nobody asks any questions. But for living somewhere, everybody is questioning you!” We want to break the silence and ask: What happened with all these people whose traces got lost?
Accidents and death at border belong unfortunately to the daily experiences of refugees trying to reach a safe haven. The European Border Control Agency FRONTEX in co-operation with national authorities are heightening and thickening the fences and walls around us, controlling and patrolling the borders and externalizing them to European neighbour states such as Turkey, Morocco, Tunisia a.o. They have created treaties of co-operation in deportations and huge refugee detention camps at the gates of Europe. Trying to cross a number of borders, among them the ones of Fortress Europe is a huge risk of death! The numbers are shocking: more than 2.000 people died in the Mediterranean Sea only in 2011. Each single person left behind a big gap in the life of relatives and friends.
LOST AT BORDER gives the voice mainly to refugees searching and mourning for their beloved. The report was made by a group of antiracist activists from different countries who have been already involved in the search of migrants who got lost at the border between Greece and Turkey. It can be quite difficult to find information on what has happened when somebody is missing at the border. Apart from the report we want to help and fill this information gap by a new Blog. We want to connect the relatives and friends of border victims to each other and we want to let you know and feel that you are not alone on this journey! We will never forget. We promise to overcome the murderous border regime and to continue our struggle for a welcoming Europe.
download lostatborder report
LOST AT BORDER – Blog
Report and Blog have been published by Infomobile
The German Ministry of Interior informed in a letter that deportations to Greece under the Dublin II Regulation will be suspended for another year. The letter states that despite initial changes in the treatment of asylum seekers in Greece the asylum system still does not comply with European standards.
The moratorium is valid until 12th of January 2013.
The 25th of January is the day on which 300 migrants in Greece started a hunger strike. Their demand is a collective legalisation of all the people excluded from Greek society based on their status – be it asylum seekers, not recognised refugees, illegalised people, exploited migrant labourers. It is not the first hunger strike in Greece where human beings are forced to use such a drastic measure to fight for their rights.
Continue reading ‘Declaration of solidarity with the hunger strikers in Greece – Legalisation and equal rights now – Call for a week of action’
Hunger strikers in Thessaloniki
Yesterday (21st of January 2011) was a bad day for the Dublin II system. The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg judged Belgium and Greece for violating European Convention on Human Rights.
Continue reading ‘ECtHR front kicks Dublin II’
The Guardian released two embassy cables provided by the by now well-known wikileaks cablegate that report on the Greek government’s position and strategy on dealing with irregular migration. This article provides a short summary of the contents. Both reports were written shortly after the change of government in October 2009, in December and February respectively. They don’t offer any surprising insight, but sketch some policy lines.
- Greece tackles migration and asylum issues. 4th of December 2009
- Greece revamps security service and tackles immigration. 1st of February 2010
The first embassy cable, Greece tackles migration and asylum issues confirms that asylum and migration are high priority to the new government, both on a domestic as well as on a European level. From the summary:
Continue reading ‘US embassy cables: Greece and migration’
Iranian refugees detained in Evros continue wave of hunger strikes
27th November, Athens, by Infomobile
Four Iranians detained at the border station of Feres in northeastern Greece have sewed their mouths in protest of their prolonged detention. Only one of them, a journalist, managed to apply for asylum. The situation in Feres is critical due to overcrowded cells but also because victims of torture, asylum seekers and other vulnerable groups are held for long periods in detention.
In the beginning of October two Iranian refugees started a hunger strike while being in detention in Evros. They stitched their mouths using fibbers from their shoelaces as an act of protest against their deportation and for their right to political asylum. If they wouldn’t had been in a critical medical condition, which led to their transfer to Alexandroupolis hospital, their cases would not have reached the public. They would have been possibly deported back to Iran where they would face imprisonment and execution for political reasons.
Since the early summer of 2010 more and more refugees – mainly coming from Iran – are caught up in the midst of a protection gap. They resorted to hunger strikes as act of political resistance, their last means of struggle, the only way to be heard and helped. Repeatedly they have fought for their right to asylum, some of them succeeded. They also fight for their freedom and basic human rights.
Continue reading ‘How the Rabit saved the refugee’
Article published in la Repubblica about Italy’s attemp to stop immigration via Turkey and Greece
Immigration: Manganelli wants to expand cooperation to Turkey and Greece | 28th September 2010
According to the Chief of Police Antonio Manganelli, it is possible to block the landing of illegal immigrants at the coast of Salento ‘through the expansion of international cooperation to Turkey and Greece,’ Manganelli said to a journalist on the way to Lecce, where a mass was to be held in honor of St. Michael the Archangel, patron of the State Police. ‘We have worked well with a number of countries in West Africa and with Libya. We have reset landings on Lampedusa. But we have a problem,’ Manganelli admitted, ‘We are still open for those, crossing the routes through Turkey. I was in Greece last month to talk about this problem with them. Rodolfo Ronconi, Central Director of Immigration and Border Police at the Italian Ministry of Interior is going to visit Turkey in the next view days. After Lecce,’ Manganelli said, ‘I will leave for Brussels to meet the heads of the European and African police forces to discuss precisely this issue.’