Bangladesh Moves Rohingya People to Low-lying Island//Frontex Chief Caught in a Lie//&More

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Barbed wire in Moria 2.0. Image courtesy of Katy Fallon

FEATURE

Greece and European Commission Sign Letter of Intent on New Lesvos Reception Center

By September 2021, the European Commission and Greek government plan to build a new reception center on the island of Lesvos. Previously, Greek Minister of Migration Notis Mitarakis had promised to build a closed center by Easter 2021.

In a press release, the Commission described the new center as a place designed to “operate with swift, fair and effective procedures.” It will have living areas made out of containers, playgrounds, common kitchens—and a detention area for people awaiting deportation.

It’s somewhat unclear if these plans align completely with Notis Mitarakis’ plan to build a closed warehouse or if the EU’s proposed camp will be more open (but still heavily fortified). One thing is clear: despite Ursula von der Leyen’s claim that “Europe & Greece are working hand in hand for the people on the Greek islands,” neither people on the move nor Greek islanders will likely be happy with this plan. Lesvos locals have already protested against the construction of any new camp, and expressed frustration that there was no consultation with them during the decision making process. …


Frontex is taken transparency activists to court to enforce payment of legal bill // Shipwreck off Lesvos: one woman drowned, one missing // New testimony of pushback in Aegean // Tactics to prevent illegal pushbacks // Happening now: families with children with no place to go in BiH // British immigration minister refuses to rule out to use of inhumane tactics against refugees // Senegal: Father of dead boy taken to court //

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Winter is here in Bosnia, where camps have no hot water and at least 3,000 people do not even have a place in the camp but sleep rough; among them there are families. Copyright: Transbalkanska Solidarnost

FEATURE: Frontex is using bully-boy tactics to intimidate transparency activists

No day without news from Frontex. This time, they are taking two freedom-of-information activists to court in order to force them to pay a legal bill for almost €24,000. Luisa Izuzquiza and Arne Semsrott lost their case against Frontex in November 2019, when they sued for the disclosure of the name, flag and type of each vessel deployed by Frontex in the central Mediterranean under Joint Operation Triton. Frontex refused, citing public security, although they had already shared a lot of the information in question publicly on their twitter account prior to the activist’s request. The General Court of the European Union however agreed with Frontex. Following the decision, Frontex sent the activists a bill for over €23,700 to to cover the expenses for top lawyers. Izuzquiza and Semsrott decided not to pay, but instead started a petition that reached 87,000 signatures in which they asked Frontex to withdraw the demand for reimbursement.


New report on the situation in Moria 2.0 // Protests against scheduled deportation from UK to Jamaica // Germany wants to deport nine year old unaccompanied minor relocated from Moria // Frontex denies being involved in pushbacks

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Spain sees an increase of people arriving on the Canary Islands. Photo: Screenshot UNHCR

Spain

In an article, NRC.nl explains the reasons for the increased number of people arriving on the Canary Islands. According to the newspaper, Morocco suspended an agreement with Spain to take back undocumented people due to the pandemic. With income losses because of no tourism and a bad olive harvest, the situation for many people in Morocco has worsened — additionally especially the rural areas are hit by the Coronavirus. With a higher focus on the conflict in the Western Sahara, the coastguard is not currently being prioritised by authorities, making it easier for the people to start their 1500 kilometer long journeys by boat. After arriving on the islands, their next goal is the Spanish mainland. “In recent weeks, quite a few have managed to board a plane from here to Spain with their passport. There are no figures for that. …


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Are You Syrious?

Dec 1 · 9 min read

The Arguineguín camp is emptied // Germany’s debate on whether to deport to Syria // Home Office still saying migrants are traffickers, even after Judge says no // and more…


The Arguineguín camp is emptied // Germany’s debate on whether to deport to Syria // Home Office still saying migrants are traffickers, even after Judge says no // and more…

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Photo by Stonsi Gr.

FEATURE: New map of camp/RIC for Lesvos

The Ministry of Immigration and Asylum confirmed on Sunday a map of the new Closed Controlled Structure of Islands in Vastria, north-eastern Lesvos within the boundaries of the Municipality of Mytilene. The building is supposed to start around Easter and end in the fall of 2021. The camp will be accessible from a road that apparently goes to a landfill…but the camp will have “no contact” with the landfill. …


Greek minister Mitarakis visits Lesvos // New commission to investigate Frontex // Updates on the #Jamaica50 deportation flight from the UK // Updates from the Tigray region, Ethiopia

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Greek minister Mitarakis visits Lesvos // New commission to investigate Frontex // Updates on the #Jamaica50 deportation flight from the UK // Updates from the Tigray region, Ethiopia

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FRONTEX — Frontiers, Racism, Opacity, (N)business, Trap, Exclusion, Xenofobia — Over the weekend, protests against EU migration policy took place in the Canary Islands. This is in Las Palmas (Photo by niksupertrampp)

Featured — Italian institutional racism kills again

A group of grassroots associations, collectives and NGOs released a statement on the story of Caserma Serena, reception centre in Treviso (north-eastern Italy) and on the death of Chaka Outtara, who killed himself after being arrested and put in isolation for claiming his rights.

Caserma Serena is a reception centre managed by Nova Facility, which hosted — until the summer — 300 people. At the end of the first lockdown in May, a number of positive cases among workers and residents, forced the structure to impose a new quarantine. As usual, for non-citizens, health provisions apply only in restrictive terms. No isolation of COVID-positive residents, no continuous testing. …


An activist based in Athens shares his experience of life in the Greek capital during COVID-19. Since the outbreak of the pandemic people on the move have been disproportionally effected by lockdown measures throughout Europe, but especially in Greece.

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(Generational Trauma. Photo Credit: Ricardo Chucky via Art With Teeth)

The night before Halloween, when I was crossing Victoria Square I was caught by the cops for wearing a mask on my chin.

At the same time there where white people sitting in a café, and walking on the street without masks.

My frenzy for celebrating Halloween, however, ended up with a bloody big racist slap on my face. I was asking myself, why do they have the loathsome right to harass, hit, and play with human dignity. …


132 Deaths in the Central Mediterranean This Month//Head of Spanish Navy Emphasizes Legal and Moral Obligation to Rescue

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Are You Syrious?

Nov 28 · 6 min read


132 Deaths in the Central Mediterranean This Month//Head of Spanish Navy Emphasizes Legal and Moral Obligation to Rescue

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The rescue ship Menkalinan brings people to Arguineguin in the Canary Islands. Photo credit: Quique Curbelo (EFE) via Cadena Ser

UK

Black Public Figures, Activists Speak Out Against Next Week’s Deportation to Jamaica

On December 2nd, the UK Home Office plans to deport 50 people back to Jamaica despite widespread outcry. People have pointed out the dangerous conditions that await potential returnees in Jamaica, as well as several cases of people that have been deported unjustly in the past. At least one man who was deported in February during the last round of deportations to Jamaica was actually the grandson of a member of the Windrush generation and as such had the right to remain in the UK.

Black public figures from Bernardine Evaristo to Naomi Campbell signed a letter urging airlines not to cooperate with the planned deportation. It is not sure which airline will be used for the deportation, although activists speculate that it might be TUI since it is the Home Office’s #1 deportation flight partner. One of the major British airlines, Virgin Airlines, stopped cooperating with British deportation flights in 2018 after the Windrush scandal. The signees also pointed to the recent resignation of Alexandra Ankrah, the most senior Black civil servant involved in the Windrush scheme, over the racism within the organization, as proof that the Home Office is unable to competently handle the current deportations. Of course, the Home Office responded by calling all the people they plan to deport “dangerous foreign criminals.” …

About

Are You Syrious?

Daily news digests from the field, mainly for volunteers and refugees on the route, but also for journalists and other parties.

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