AYS Daily Digest 20/09/17: End the illegal restriction of family reunification transfers

Paris today



First boat came in on Lesvos north, Korakas between 08.00–09.00 today with 31 people on board (11 children, 7 woman and 13 men). Second boat was rescued by HCG outside Mytilíni at 11.00, carrying 67 people (19 men, 17 women and 32 children). The last boat had been chased by TCG in to Greek waters. After pick up by HCG, TCG still followed them for a while.


The Athena Centre for Women is the first all women-only space for female refugees, outside of any formal camp structures. There, their needs can be addressed and be empowered with crucial asylum/health/legal information, psychosocial support, language classes and leisure activities. Since its opening in July 2016, the Centre has recorded 6036 entries from almost 500 women of various nationalities. Now they need our help to establish an all-women bus that will allow them and their families to access essential services, in a safe and dignified manner, in order to make choices of their own when it comes to mental and physical health. See more about their work and how you can contribute here.


Riots and fighting broke out among the refugees in Samos three days ago. The reason appears to be one refugee stealing a phone, which then escalated into a conflict collectively among the refugees. A video shared from inside the camp shows the conditions people are forced to live in, making it easier to understand how tensions can rise.


“Greece Wins Europe’s Best Destination Video by the World Tourism Organization” — a headline you could see today. Many people stuck on the Greek islands and in camps across mainland Greece wouldn’t agree.


The Timber Project working together with InterVolve and Help Refugees finished building a grocery shop in Koutsochero Camp, Larissa!


Early in the new school year, over 150 out of some 800 refugee/migrant children between the ages of 7 and 14 currently in Serbia, already started attending public primary schools across the country. UNHCR continued supporting refugees, authorities, and other partners’ efforts to see this number growing. Authorities plan for children from all 18 governmental centres to attend local public schools except those in the three Transit Centres (TCs) of Subotica, Kikinda and Sombor, who, waiting soon admission into Hungary, will attend classes organized in the TCs by local teachers, instead. In securing access to education to all refugee children, Serbia shall set a positive example, as for too many refugees worldwide education still remains out of reach, UNHCR’s new global Refugee Education Report refers. Read it in full here.



Rete Solidale Pordenone commented on the situation in their town, where last night 42 asylum seekers with all the documents in order have slept in the street:


Galleria Bombi in Gorizia has been cleared, but the migrants stayed there. Without any alternative housing and the rain, last morning no asylum seeker has been pushed away from the tunnel. Gorizia prefecture asked the Ministry of Interiors in Rome and Udine prefecture to transfer part of the migrants to the barracks Cavarzerani, but no answer has followed yet, Il Piccolo reports.
As planned, last morning the staff from cleaning agency Isontina Ambiente showed up in via Giustiniani parking lot, along with the police, mayor Rodolfo Ziberno, his vice Stefano Ceretta and the Welfare assessor Silvana Romano. At 8.45am they started the sanitation of the tunnel. Last month, during the same episode, the migrants were directed elsewhere by the volunteers, but this time no association was present. The police asked them to move, with the intervention of a mediator, but the rain complicated the operations. Not knowing where to shelter, the asylum seekers moved from one side of the tunnel to the other, while letting the machines clean the tunnel. Everything happened in a peaceful way, no protest. Understanding the difficult situation, the policemen did not pretend more than necessary. During the operation, vice-mayor Ceretta highlighted the necessity to find alternative solutions to galleria Bombi. “It is not human to leave them here to sleep”. The receiving structures in the area are full. The temporary closure of a part of dormitory Faidutti further decreased the number of available beds. At Caritas, a problem of scabies and fleas required sanitation, which meant less places.


Every evening between 19.30 and 21 at Piazzale Maslax, people can bring: blankets, sleeping bags and (JUST FOR MEN) hoodies size S and M, jackets of same size — not elegant ones, hats, scarfs and neck warmers. Please, respect timings and items. Baobab accepts second hand clothes, but they must be clean and in good conditions e.g. no holes. They also have other local collection points managed by different volunteers (fb contact):
San Lorenzo: Alessandra Soro
Piazza Bologna e Tufello: Renato Ferrantini
Flaminia: Nicoletta Iommi
Montesacro e Piazza dei Navigatori: Raffaella Bracale
Togliatti Prenestina: Riccardo Farina
Primavalle battistini: Alessia Pecchioli(dac / dritti al cuore)
Tiburtina: Francesco Pietanza
EUR : Valentina Cofini
Castelli romani e monti prenestini: Elisa Memeo



On 19 September, taxi driver Lorenzo “Renzino” Guglielmi has been condemned to 8 months for favoring illegal immigration, but he has already come back home. The man could avail the conditional arrest. However, his phone was taken: the investigators hope to identify, through the contact list, the name of the Arab-Tunisian man suspected to manage — in Vallecrosia — a wide network of clandestine from Italy to France. According to Guglielmi, he met the man few days ago and asked him if he could transport a family to French station in Mentone. The taxi driver was arrested while transporting the Maghrebi people without documents. Guglielmi defended himself saying he did not know the status of these people, and few days later he came back home to Italy, Italian news report.


Africans crossing the Mediterranean has become a mathematical equation in a textbook approved by the French education ministry for secondary school pupils. After facing criticism, the book publisher Nathan, who introduced the conundrum which featured a photograph of African migrants crammed into an inflatable dinghy, has issued an formal apology, although insisted it was only acting under orders, Sputnik reports.

Current situation in Paris, photos by a local volunteer


Following the police action yesterday to clear refugees camping at Grande Synthe near to Dunkerque, this afternoon five families and approximately 100 men remained on the site, Care4Calais updates.

photo by Care4Calais


Belgium and Sudan have entered into an agreement on the return of Sudanese who have illegally entered Belgian land, novinite reports. The deal has been strongly criticized by the Socialist Party and human rights defenders. The media said there were 158 Sudanese detained in Brussels taken to a closed-door migrant center, novinite adds.



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Are You Syrious?

Are You Syrious?

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