AYS News Digest 4/8: Europe Let Me Down.

The EU and US reject UN refugee resettlement plan. Syrian doctor to NPR: Don’t forget Madaya. New Skype schedule in Greece. Small fire near Sindos mostly contained. Syrian cat-lover and rescuer nominated for Nobel Peace Prize. Refugee parents forced to offer their children grass to eat in Austria. Children’s Learning Center to be closed in Calais.

Photo Credit: Nima Yaghmaei Photography


Don’t forget Madaya, doctor implores.

In an interview on NPR, Syrian American Medical Society’s Ammar Ghanem revisits the reality that Madaya is still cut off from basic supply chains, resulting in horrible starvation of the population. Starvation has been repeatedly used as a weapon of warfare throughout the Syrian civil war. Read the full interview here.

Photo Credit Nima Yaghmaei Photography


The EU and US have panned a proposed UN plan to resettle ten percent of the world’s refugee population annually.

One out of one hundred people on earth are currently displaced, but the agreement which was presented on August 2nd was stripped of any meaningful decision allocating responsibilities over portions of the refugee community. The timeline for adopting the accord has now shifted to 2018.

Updated Skype schedule for refugees has been released.

Although it is linked in Greek, the English translation will be posted as soon as it becomes available.


Due to the relocation of 300 to 400 refugees from Chios, sources from the Migration Ministry have said that around 1,000 individuals will be transferred from the islands. Those to be transferred are refugees that have sought asylum who have completed the first part of the procedure. They have not left for Athens due to primarily financial reasons.


Alvio Dolores’s medical mission released a long update about the current situation in Athens. There is nothing positive to report as terrible heat are taking a severe toll on all there. The lack of medical staff has made coordinating medical care to independent and self-organized camps very difficult; however regular trips to two squats have been organized by refugees themselves.


A fire broke out near Sindos camp, but fortunately it did not pose a threat. The fire resulted from bushes near train tracks catching on fire in the terrific, dry Greek heat, but a crew of firefighters and several tankers have the fire mostly contained.


Residents in Valisika camp collected over 200 liters of water for those in Softex after hearing word that those in Softex were out of water. This story is a powerful reminder of the strength of those seeking asylum in Europe and the superiority of movements that celebrate and center this strength.

Photo Credit: Nima Yaghmaei Photography


ADRA Serbia has released a helpful series of info-graphics for those transiting Serbia to refer to in order to preserve their safety and understand their options. The infographics are available in multiple languages. Below are those in English. Follow the link for the rest.

Photo credit: ADRA Srbija
Video courtesy: I’m Human Organization


New initiatives to rescue people in the mediterranean.

Video courtesy of Ca Dus


A move to award the Nobel Peace Prize to rescuer and cat-aficionado Mohammad Alaa Aljaleel has taken off.

As his application was forwarded by the relevant authorities, the facebook page Nobel Peace Prize to Alaa has been growing, reflecting on the heroism of the so-called “Cat Man of Aleppo.” Alaa has long been involved with the rescue efforts in Aleppo and also runs an animal shelter where he and a few others tend to the needs of over 130 cats and several dogs. The largest support for his efforts comes from an Italian-based social media campaign Il gattaro D’aleppo.

Photos courtesy of Il gattaro D’aleppo


Refugee parents forced to offer their children grass to eat.

Aside from small-scale volunteer efforts, many refugees in Austria have found themselves with no recourse or support structure after having been pushed back. In a report written by a Children and Youth Services worker in Salzburg we learn that refugee families with small children are either on their way to Germany or have been pushed back from. In some cases, they have reported that their money has been confiscated by police in order to “pay for their stay,” leaving them with no way to cover their costs. The treatment of these families is horribly shameful. Many of them either have not applied for asylum or have withdrawn their applications for asylum after having been told that they risk being deported back to Hungary. More attention must be paid to this situation.


Photos courtesy of Calais Action

Children’s learning center in Calais may be closed according to Calais Action.

The Jungle Books Kids Cafe was stormed by police, recently, who informed the managers that all “businesses” inside of Calais will be required to close effective August 10th. The closure is currently being contested, and those wishing to folow the story should follow the Calais Action page

Photos courtesy of Danica Jurisic

Horrific news as several refugee squats were evicted recently, with the total number of refugees being around 1000.

It was intended that they be taken to different camps around France, but when refugees and locals protested this decision in a protest, the police reacted with violence. As a result, police are hunting down refugees sleeping in the streets. Volunteers are requesting support for shelter, sleeping bags, medicine, hygiene items, and tents.

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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