AYS Daily Digest 10/04/17: Fire in La Linière

Escalation of tensions in French border area | Syrians exploited in Turkey | Greece:Information on asylum and reunification procedure; suffering on the islands | Legal info for Serbia | Relocation (too) slowly moving in Croatia |

La Liniere, Grande-Synthe, Monday evening (Original photo source: Le Phare)


Fire and fights escalated tonight at La Linière

Later on we found out that incidents broke out later in the night at La Linière and that reportedly 6 refugees were injured. The fights that broke out in the afternoon, around 6 pm, among those staying in the camp led to an intervention by the CRS,who used tear gas inside the camp area. This spread to dozens of people. Later on, one of the people from the camp was hit by a vehicle.

The authorities have said that 4 people were wounded by knife, one of whom was hospitalized, and one person suffered injuries on the motorway.
At the time of publishing, there was no further news about the incident.

Volunteers on site ask for help and donations:

We really need your help in getting as many EMERGENCY BLANKETS< FOIL BLANKETS AND SLEEPING BAGS to Dunkirk as soon as possible.
There are many families there.
Please purchase from LeisureFayre as they deliver directly and quickly to the warehouse in Calais.
Please do NOT take items to the camp but to l’Auberge warehouse or Care4Calais.
We also need groups to do an emergency collection (delivered asap ie the next few days) of either:
1) HYGIENE PACKS (toothbrush, toothpaste, flannel, razor, tissues, bar of soap) or
2) FOOD PACKS (bottled water, nuts, snack bars, tinned fish)


Syrian refugees victims of exploitation and violence

The exact location is not being made public due to security reasons. İmece was able to provide minimal resources but points out that the living conditions and needs of the families are drastic.

A volunteer who works in the region in the region wrote us that after the attack, at least three camps have been evicted by some of the local populace.

Hundreds of people have been forced to flee their homes. The vast majority did so without any of their possessions, which were later destroyed. People that have traveled many hundreds of kilometers in fear of violence have been forced on the move once again. Despite there being a police station less than five minutes away, and this incident happening over a long period of time in a number of locations, there was apparently no response from local law enforcement, he wrote.

Syrian refugees in this area are mostly working in local farms, often exploited as a cheap labor.

“It is Syrian labor that is keeping this nation fed. But it is not just Turkey. This area exports a huge amount of fresh produce to Europe. It is the ever increasing demand from Europe for cheap food that almost makes the exploitation of Syrians in Turkey an inevitability, the fate of the local populace has become a secondary concern in favor of the “invisible hand of the market.

Understandably many of the locals view the Syrians as an invading competitor. Whilst it is the “invisible hand” that really harms them, anything invisible is hard to take aim at.”

Last week, The New York Times publish a story about Ismail, a 15 years old boy who together with his family works in farms in Izmir area.

Photo by the World Tribe.

Ismail spends up to 11 hours a day, 6 days a week, working only to get about $225 a month — just over half of the legal minimum wage.

It’s estimated that around 380,000 Syrian children are trapped in some kind of child labor in Turkey.

Follow this link to volunteer in the camps around Izmir and to find out more how you can help.


Important info about the asylum procedure

Additional info on family reunification

You, or your lawyer, can be informed about the outcome of your application by phoning the relevant Asylum Office. Greece has three months to ask the EU country you applied to, for the family reunification to happen. That country then has another two months to send its answer back to Greece. After a positive decision, Greece has six months to send you to the country you applied to go. Normally, the entire process can take up to a year. However, sometimes the process may last longer.

According to the information AYS found, the process is more often delayed that made in a fastest possible way. Some families are waiting for up to one year to be reunited.

Two man arrested for sexual exploitation of women in camp

Protests against evictions

People from Albatros squat in Thessaloniki, that was evicted on 5th of April by the police, are calling for the protests on Tuesday 11th of April at 12 at the courthouse of Thessaloniki.

In their statement, they remind that police arrested 13 people, refusing to inform them about their right or to let them contact a lawyer and get translators for five hours. After 32 hours, 12 people were set free, but one remained in prison for having no paper.

“He may stay for up to six months for this only, and is also accused, like the others, of both squatting and damaging private property. The asylum process in Greece is still so insufficient that thousands of people are not able to obtain a “legal status” and have therefore no possibilities to get access to accommodation or other forms of support. Living in a squat is often the only option they have.”

The group reminds that three other squats were evicted last summer, but also that in this case, like in the case of evictions in Lesvos and Athens, the police actions are done as repression against squatting. Victims are people who came to Europe to find refuge.

People trapped on islands are suffering

That is the way they note that this approach could cause even more problem in the future,

We live daily within the enclaved islands in Moria, in Viale, Souda, Samos, Kos, Leros. We witness their anxieties, hear their voices, feel their pain. Let them continue on their way, end the inhumane confinement.

To add to this, we publish today’s pictures from camp Souda, Chios.

Conditions inside of the Souda camp. @miss_montag

Elliniko warehouse in Athens needs your help. This is the place where from many camps, squats and community centers are supplied and thousands of people depend on the help they can get from there.

The place is run by local volunteers the Pampiraiki Group. They need food, cleaning staff, baby care, pharmacy, summer clothing. For more info, visit their FB page.

They also always need volunteers.

Workshops for everybody in Thessaloniki

Workshops will be organized from 17 until 30 April.

New edition of Rumors is out

Help needed in Athens


Legal aid

Warnings from the field — thefts

The ten boys living here had their shoes and phones stolen around 3 am, volunteers say (Photo: NuuNoo Miguel)

Exhibition & sharing

Volunteer healing refugees feet after his arrival from the Hungarian border… March, 2017. By Igor Čoko.


Relocation — in small steps: 14

Some news were recently shared, concerning the Porin Reception centre. There are plans for starting the renovation of the facility, installing AC in the common rooms, painting of the walls, placing of a safety fence around the back part of the lawn, etc. Also, a digital database of all residents will provide greater safety and is supposed to introduce separated entrances for families on the one side and for individuals on the other, the officials announced.

CMS reports that an international confederation of 20 organizations of Oxfam, in collaboration with MYLA from Macedonia and Belgrade’s Centre for Human Rights have published a report A DANGEROUS ‘GAME’ The push back of migrants, including refugees, at Europe’s borders, that supported our earlier claims and the lack of success in providing protection to refugees in West Balkans. Instead of providing a refuge, the practice of daily forced returns to neighboring countries, with no possibility of demanding the international protection.

Since October 2015, 128 people were granted international protection in Croatia, Ministry of Interior told AYS.


Different asylum politics from state to state

“The reason for the differing recognition rates within Germany might be the different countries of origin. Asylum seekers from Syria or Eritrea, for example, are much more likely to be accepted because of the political and social circumstances in their home countries, they concluded.

They also write that “states with higher population figures tend to have higher recognition rates, while states with increased unemployment are inclined to have lower rates. There are also signs that decision-makers who are bureaucratically overburdened tend to reject more applications. A surprising fact is that states with higher per-capita-debt recognize more applications”.


Evictions could force thousands of Syrian refugees out of the Bekaa valley

We really want to be sure that the evictions are not used as a backdoor to forced returns to Syria— Mike Bruce, a spokesman for the Norwegian Refugee Council

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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