AYS Daily Digest 12/07/17: CRS seeks to drive refugees away from Calais by contaminating drinking water

Long wait times continue / Concerns as administration of island hotspots set to move to Greek jurisdiction / Overcrowding and tensions continue at island hotspots / Gay Jamaican asylum-seeker victim of Surinamese, Dutch police brutality / Refugee struck by a truck in Italy / Traffickers caught transporting 25 children over border in Afghanistan / And more news…

Contaminated water canisters. (Photo by L’Auberge des migrants)

FEATURE: CRS allegedly contaminating drinking water in Calais

Multiple volunteers on the ground are corroborating claims that the CRS, the French riot police who are also often deployed against refugees seeking protection in France, has been contaminating water distributed by volunteers with pepper spray. The French minister of the interior has called for a, “battle against all points of concentration,” of refugees, namely in Calais. The CRS has taken the command quite literally by poisoning the water cans meant for distribution among refugees with tear gas. One volunteer heard a CRS officer remark that he was making “sparkling water”.


United Aid Network raising money to build water filtration systems in refugee camps

According to Shah Lalon Amin, UAN has so far built 8 water filtration systems in a camp in Adana. The camp’s residents were previously forced to drink polluted river water. They are hoping to continue their project, to expand access to potable water for some of the the most vulnerable people in Turkish society. If you are able to do so, you may contribute to the project by donating money to their crowdfunding initiative.


Refugees arriving on south Lesbos facelong times to receive clothing

When refugees arrive from Turkey, it is needless to say that they have little more than the clothes on their backs. A change of clothes is a basic need for the preservation of human dignity.

NGOs raise concerns about transfer of responsibility for services to the Greek government

The European Parliament is set to discuss the transfer of responsibility for services to the Greek government today. The transfer is set to take place on August 1. As things currently stand however, there is much concern about the apparent lack of a concrete plan for the move. NGOs are afraid that refugees currently on the islands may experience a deterioration in the services that they have thus far been provided. Most of the EU aid which has helped NGOs to provide aid for 14,000 refugees is set to expire on July 31.

As arrival numbers see a relative spike, poor accommodations cause tensions to simmer

A total of 311 refugees have arrived on the islands from Monday to Wednesday. Although this number is minuscule compared to the volume of refugees in 2015, they are enough to spike tensions in already overcrowded and underserviced camps. Poor living conditions result in the agitation of the general population, which may express itself violently.


Official registrations for Greece today are as follows:

Website allows organizations to list needed supplies

Needslist is a platform which allows NGOs across Europe to list the supplies that they need to help refugees. This will allow each donor to buy as much for refugees as they would like, and it comes with the added benefit that you know exactly where your money is going. Additionally, the site is being used as a platform for organizations to advertise their need for volunteers.

Baby strollers are needed on Lesbos

One Happy Family Community Center has issued a call for baby strollers. If you are able to help, please send them a message on Facebook.

People’s Kitchen seeks funding to continue to provide vegan meals for refugees on Chios


Organization invites refugees to ask questions pertaining to the asylum process

AsyLex wants to help people to prepare for their SEM interview. The organization will provide advice for all aspects of the process, such as the questions that a refugee can expect to be asked during your interview and which documents should be brought to the hearing.


Gay Jamaican asylum-seeker manhandled by Surinamese, Dutch authorities

On June 23, gay refugee Bron Anthony Forbes was to be deported from the Netherlands after his asylum application was rejected. The deportation was postponed however, as a result of the extensive beating that he took at the hands of Surinamese officers on board the plane as it was preparing to leave. According to Forbes, it was not only the Surinamese but also Dutch authorities that mistreated him. Forbes was unable to prove sufficiently to authorities that he truly is gay, and therefore he had nothing to fear in his native country of Jamaica. Homosexuality is criminalized in Jamaica and carries a sentence of up to ten years. Forbes is expected to be finally deported on Friday July 14.


Volunteers and/or donations needed in Brussels


Refugees in northern France need blankets and sleeping bags

In the north of France, many refugees are forced to sleep under an open sky. This can be unpleasant, especially with rain on the horizon. It rained last night, as a result of which many people had their belongings ruined. Sleeping bags and blankets are therefore in great demand. If you are able to supply either of these items, please send an email to help4refugeechildren@gmail.com, or make a donation to this GoFundMe to have these items bought on your behalf.

L’Auberge des migrants in Calais asks for shoe donations

A pair of shoes costs €14.31 ($16) including taxes and deliveries. Please follow the link below if you are able to provide help.

Volunteers needed in Paris for clothes sorting and distribution

Volunteers are needed for July 14 and 15. On July 14 the distribution of clothing to women and children will take place from 15:00 to 17:00. On July 15 they will be distributing clothes for men from 9:00. If you are available to volunteer, please message Kala Kharab on Facebook, or send an SMS to 06 03 02 83 72.


Refugee killed by truck

A refugee was killed in Ventimiglia after being run over by a truck. Further details are not yet available.


Afghan police discover vans filled with drugged children

The Afghan police has arrested four members of a human trafficking ring which is believed to be responsible for the kidnapping of 25 children. The four were transporting children inside of two vans when they were discovered by police near the border with Pakistan. The group allegedly sought to smuggle children into Pakistan. At least one of the children was only four years old, and all of them were between the ages of 4 and 14. It is believed that the children were drugged by their captors.

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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