Volunteers needed on Horgoš and Kelebija border crossings

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Refugees from Gaza arriving on Lesvos. Husband is carrying his blind wife on his back and a baby in his hands. Photo taken from lesvosnews.net

Greece

132 new arrivals on Greek islands today

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Dhingi that just brought refugees to the shore of Lesvos Photo: Platanos refugee solidarity, Levos

Brexit to affect already slow relocation process.

Britain’s exit from the European Union will probably curve an already minimal appetite among member-states to push ahead with the relocation of refugees from Greece to other countries, Alternate Minister for Migration Policy Yiannis Mouzalas said in an interview with leftist Avgi newspaper, published on Sunday. “Before the Brexit, I’d say the EU’s will — and especially that of some countries like Germany, France and the Netherlands — was, at least on a bilateral level, to relocate at least 15,000 to 20,000 refugees. But after the Brexit, I cannot say how things will develop,” Mouzalas was quoted as telling the paper.

Hope center in Lesvos closed

One informal shelter, run by British expats in Lesvos. Hope center was closed after majority of local community protested it’s continuation in what was called an effort to “to protect refugees from the greed of NGOs and to protect the local economy”. On the other side, some of the local residents defended the Hope center, but in the end, it was closed.

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Phillippa and Eric Kempson. British expats that ran the Hope center in Lesvos

Join the volunteers in Samos

Volunteers from Samos report that they have a new system of distributing necessities and send a message to all that want to join: “Aside from our distribution, we have noticed that it’s the humanitarian aspect of our presence in the camp that’s also greatly appreciated. It’s amazing how a little kindness can go such a long way when people are having a difficult time. It’s as if the smallest act — such as a warm embrace — is magnified.Come join us!” For more follow the link https://samosvolunteers.wordpress.com/

Mosquitoes pose a real threat

Distressingly high numbers of mosquitoes plague most of the camps in Greece. It is important for people to eliminate standing water wherever they can, as well as stay inside during dusk and dawn. Some camps do not allow insect repellant inside of the camp, but for those that do, education initiatives need to be taken in order to promote correct usage of insect repellant. Insect repellent contains some toxins that are harmful for human consumption. It is imperative that people wash their hands after applying insect repellant, as well as to keep it out of eyes, away from the nose, and mouth. In locations where the military has forbidden the use of insect repellant, volunteers are encouraged to bring in citronella oil, lemon eucalyptus oil, and lavender oil-based sprays (not the oils themselves as most essential oils cannot be applied topically). There is conflicting research on the efficacy of essential oil insect repellant. Regardless, for those opting to use either essential-oil based or regular insect repellant, reapplication is crucial.

Italy

3,300 migrants in 26 separate operations in the Mediterranean rescued over the weekend

Italian coastguard and navy ships rescued over 3,300 migrants in 26 separate operations in the Mediterranean over the weekend, a spokesperson for the Italian navy told Reuters on Sunday.

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Migrants disembark from a vessel of ONG Medecins sans Frontieres (MSF) in the Sicilian harbour of Augusta, Italy, June 24, 2016. Photo: Reuters

Right wing party leading the way in protests blaming migrants for economic hardship in Europe

While people are risking their lives on this dangerous journey, economic crises still ravages Europe creating a stalemate that shifts the blame once again to those most affected — immigrants. This time Italy has shown it’s worrisome face with Italian extreme right Forza Nuova party marched two days ago in the main Catania’s tourist boulevard protesting against immigration and economic hardship. It was a peaceful demonstration.

Hungary / Serbia border

Volunteers are urgently needed on the border of Hungary and Serbia, but keep in mind it is a dangerous border and volunteers need either to speak Serbian and/or Hungarian or to have a reliable translator onsite. Before thinking of going check out the new FB page and connect with those already working there.

On site, at the moment, there are just two volunteers providing electricity, wifi and tea, soon will come iHo (I’m Human Organization). Would be great to organize a kitchen and distributing clothes.

Hungary

Trial of the Roeszke 11 starts today.

Follow this thread and the links for more details. https://twitter.com/VGSchwab/status/747344117693222913

Croatia

No border camp held on the Croatian — Slovenian border this weekend

This weekend No border camp was held on the border of Croatia and Slovenia. On the final day of the camp, people voiced their clear demands for improving conditions of their stay in Porin center for asylum seekers in Zagreb. Also during one of the workshops a banner of support for Roszke 11 was made. The banner is traveling the Balkan route.

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Light brigade crew. Photo: Tea Vidović
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Workshop’s held in Kumrovec, Croatia, No border camp. Photo: Tea Vidović

Croatia expecting relocated people. Volunteers needed

Also, as Croatia is expecting relocations soon and more people are returned here there is a need for volunteers based in and around Zagreb and possibly soon in Rijeka and Split in order to help with informing people of their rights as well as Croatian lessons. If interested, contact the Initiative Welcome crew by sending an email to Sara at sara.kekus@cms.com

Austria

Developments in legal case concerning push backs on Austrian border

Border crossing Spielfeld are reporting on the legal case concerning push backs on that border crossing: “The much-quoted professional and standardized procedures in place in Spielfeld are hard to find — the picture painted by the officers questioned today would suggest quite the opposite, different answers concerning who made the decision to push a person back, if the mention of war was enough a reason to be let into Austria, etc. etc. There was no detailed training of staff even though duty at Spielfeld had little to do with their normal day-to-day work.

France

Interactive Welcome map of Paris

Wonderful work by French activist. One 22 year old Sorbonne student made an interactive Welcome Map which identifies several hundred Parisian spots for refugees: food distribution, French lessons, wifi hotspots. All of this is done in 5 languages: Farsi, Turkish, French, English and Arabic.

UK

Cast of King Lear to be performing poems written by refugees living in Calais

Not all is morose in Europe’s biggest island. News from the Brits comes in many forms and shapes, but solidarity is and will be in the works as long as there are people organizing it. Calais action published news of one of such actions today: “Calais Action are honoured to be approached by the cast of King Lear who have been touring around the UK. This week on the 30th June at their last show at the Malvern, the cast will be holding a free pre-show poetry reading, combining Shakespeare’s sonnets with poems written by refugees living in Calais. Our buckets will be in attendance to be filled with people’s generosity. Please go and see this show if you can or donate to their fundraising page below. All money goes to Calais Action and we are very grateful.” For more follow the link.

Open Letter concerning Brexit

Together with Amnesty international, CARE, Refugee council and many others, Calais action wrote an open letter of solidarity. We bring you their message: “We’re proud to have co-written this open letter in The Times today standing up for the rights of refugees and asylum seekers after ‪#‎Brexit‬. Signed by Calais Action, the Refugee Council, Amnesty, CARE International and many other major organisations dealing with refugees, this letter calls both for a humane policy towards those seeking asylum, and a move away from the tone of fear and mistrust which has poisoned the Brexit debate and the national conversation on immigration.

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Open letter published in today’s Times

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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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