AYS Daily News Digest 23.04.2017: 3rd day of hunger strike in Moria

Hunger strikes continues in Moria//Long-term volunteers needed in Calais//Austrian government pushes for closure of Mediterrenean Route

Drawing by a 17 years old Afghan boy in Samos. Taken from the Yesterday-Today-Tomorrow project.


One refugee was rushed to the hospital with first symptoms of dehydration on the third day of the hunger strike in Moria, Lesvos. The twelve Syrian hunger strikers are neither eating nor drinking. The Legal Centre Lesbos says they have been in Moria for up to ten months and are protesting the rejection of their applications on admissibility grounds, as the administration claims Turkey is a “safe country”. The centre also notes that eleven of them are Kurdish and could be deported to Turkey, where Kurds are “systematically persecuted and repressed”. One of the hunger strikers is an unaccompanied minor and should be excempt from the procedure, but doesn’t have a way to prove his age. They also criticise their inability to move from Lesvos to the mainland.

Photo by PIKPA

Pre-detention jail in Kos almost full

After the massive deportation on the 20th April of 60 people from Kos to Turkey, the pre-detention jail has already filled up with about 35–40 new people. Of the 60 who were deported, 36 had not applied for asylum, despite the possibility to do so. Volunteers complain about the lack of information given to refugees about their right to apply for asylum and their right to receive visitors. Six solidarity groups for refugees in Kos held their first meeting this Saturday and discussed how to provide legal support and medical help.

Trapped. Picture by a a 18 years old Syrian Boy living in Kara Tepe Refugee Camp, as part of the Yesterday/Today/Tomorrow project.

Salvamento Maritimo Humanitario to leave Chios

Ana-MPA reports the Basque NGO Salvamento Maritimo Humanitario announced on Saturday it is ending all its activities on Chios and leaving the island after local residents opposed the group’s initiative to operate a health center for refugees. The mayor said the municipality had not been informed about the NGOs plans to build a clinic and that local residents had voted against the plan in a council meeting.

Sailing boat tries to reach Italy

Keep Talking Greece reports a sailing boat carrying 93 refugees was spotted off the coast of Parga, Western Greece, on Sunday morning. The majority of passengers were women and children and the boat’s destination was Italy. It was stopped by the coast guard and led back to the port of Parga.


Long-term volunteers needed in Calais

Photo by Solidarité migrants Wilson


Government pushes for closure of Mediterrenean Route

In an interview with „Presse am Sonntag“ Austrian Chancellor Christian Kern (SPÖ) said he supports the creation of refugee camps outside Europe, in countries like “Libya, Senegal, Mali and Afghanistan” and insisted Austria would be willing to make a “substantial contribution” and could even imagine sending Austrian soldiers to “defend these camps”. Meanwhile, the
Interior Minister Wolfgang Sobotka said that the closure of the Western Mediterranean route has become crucial, arguing that “rescue in the open sea cannot be a ticket to Europe, because it gives organized crime every argument to persuade people to escape for economic reasons”. His party, the ÖVP, suggested a resolution to expand the Frontex mission, improve cooperation with NATO, and implement a common European asylum system with „migration centers“ in North Africa, while the ÖVP secretary general Werner Amon said boats aiming for Europe should be prevented from leaving the ports, and military forces from the EU should be allowed to conduct “supporting interventions” to protect outside borders.

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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