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latest news from across Europe (1-14.10.19) including:
- European States urged to
do more to protect and support child refugees and migrants
- New Frontex Regulation: corrected
version of the text
- Hungary: Refusing journalist
access to a reception centre for asylum-seekers was in breach
of the European Convention
- Italy's new migrant decree
promises repatriations in 4 months
- Fatal fire inside Moria refugee
leaders jailed for sedition by Spanish court
"Spain's Supreme Court
has sentenced nine Catalan separatist leaders to between nine
and 13 years in prison for sedition over their role in an independence
referendum in 2017."
calls for more NATO ships to patrol Aegean Sea following Turkeys
Syria offensive (euractiv.link):
"Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis called on NATO
to increase naval patrols in the Aegean Sea on Thursday (10 October)
after a threat by Turkey to open Europes doors to more
than three million migrants.
I asked the Secretary
General and the Alliance, and member states to strengthen their
in the Aegean Sea with more ships, Mitsotakis
said in a press conference after talks with NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg
in Athens yesterday.(...)
Turkish President Recep Tayyip
Erdogan earlier threatened that Ankara would allow millions of
refugees to head to Europe if the bloc criticised Turkeys
ongoing military offensive in Syria."
press release of the Palermo Charter Platform Process on the
results of the EU Summit of Home Affairs Ministers on 23 September
in Malta and the consequent negotiations on 8 October in Luxembourg
"The Malta Agreement
("agreement on temporary reception and distribution mechanism")
is not a hard-won solution, but nothing more than a partial emergency
relief. We, European civil society initiatives and networks,
mayors of European cities and search and rescue non-governmental
organizations, demand a real solution that is adequate to the
scale of the humanitarian crisis in the Mediterranean Sea.
"temporary solidarity mechanism" on relocation of people
rescued at sea - what does it say?
starts negotiations with the USA on exchange of e-evidence
- talks start
even though EU legislation not yet adopted
- CJEU questions the legality of proposed EU measure
- Commission says deal must include content and non-content data
On 25 September 2019
the Commission started negotiations with the USA on: E-evidence
- Negotiations for EU-U.S. Agreement on cross-border access to
evidence - report on state-of-play (RESTRICTED doc no:
journalist access to a reception centre for asylum-seekers was
in breach of the European Convention (pdf):
"In todays Chamber
judgment1 in the case of Szurovecz v. Hungary (application no.
15428/16) the European Court of Human Rights held, unanimously,
that there had been:
- a violation of Article 10 (freedom of expression) of the European
Convention on Human Rights. The case concerned media access to
reception facilities for asylum-seekers.
The applicant in the case,
a journalist for an Internet news portal, complained about the
authorities refusal of his request to carry out interviews
and take photographs at the Debrecen Reception Centre, thus preventing
him from reporting on the living conditions there."
Council, 7-8 October
The Justice and Home Affairs
Council is meeting in Luxembourg on 7 and 8 October. Issues under
discussion include e-evidence negotiations between the EU and
the USA; EU accession to the European Convention on Human Rights;
right-wing extremism and terrorism; and the implementation of
the EU's plans to interconnect its migration and policing databases.
Council documents published here indicate that this latter project
is running into trouble.
new migrant decree promises repatriations in 4 months (InfoMigrants, link):
"Italian Foreign Minister
Luigi Di Maion presented a new asylum decree intended to cut
the time it takes for decisions on whether a migrant should be
repatriated to four months: "It was a team effort,"
Di Maio told reporters at a press conference at the foreign ministry
police running secret Prevent database (The Guardian,
across the UK have been running a secret database containing
details of thousands of individuals referred to the governments
controversial anti-radicalisation Prevent programme, the Guardian
Greece needs to
face reality about asylum seekers (euobserver, link):
"The Greek islands are
under the spotlight again, as a new wave of tragic events has
hit asylum seekers trapped there. On 29 September, a big fire
broke out in Moria - the notorious camp on the island of Lesbos
- killing one woman, and injuring at least nine more people,
including a baby, the health ministry reported.
On 24 September, a truck killed
Afghan boy who was playing just outside Moria.(...)"
Comment: The latest government
figures show (3.10.19) that a total of 30,664 refugees are present
on the Greek islands. Including 14,930 on Lesvos with places
for 3,000 and 6,028 on Samos with places for 648.
Watch migrant rescue captain Carola Rackete criticizes EU lawmakers (DW, link):
"The Sea Watch 3 captain,
who memorably defied Italy's landing ban, chastised EU lawmakers
for the situation in the Mediterranean. She said rescuers were
legally compelled not to return migrants to Libya as it is unsafe.
"The EU member states
have engaged in a policy of externalization of their responsibilities
and a practice of pushbacks and omissions of rescue, delegating
interventions to a country at war, Libya, in breach of international
law," Rackete said Thursday to both applause and jeers."
Parliamentary Assembly: PACE
to Europes governments: It is your duty not to let
people drown in the Mediterranean (link):
"While welcoming the
commitment of NGOs to carrying out sea rescues, the Assembly
has insisted that it is the duty of States not to let people
drown in the Mediterranean.
States should also allow NGOs
to carry out their life-saving missions in the Med, and refrain
from stigmatising their work. The captains of all
such rescue vessels should be able to disembark migrants and
refugees in the nearest port of safety, as provided for in international
is hell': asylum seekers protest conditions at Greek camp
"Hundreds of asylum seekers
protested conditions at Greeces biggest migrant camp on
Lesbos on Tuesday after a woman was killed in a fire there, marching
towards the islands capital before being halted by police."
crisis: latest news from across Europe (24-30.9.19) including:
- Greece: Deadly fire triggers
protests at Moria refugee camp
- EU: 'Inhumane' Frontex returns
- The "temporary solidarity
mechanism" on relocation of people rescued at sea - what
does it say?
drone operations: Israeli military firm Elbit amongst maritime
Seven EU member states have been
provided with drone "services" by the European Maritime
Safety Agency (EMSA) since 2018, and EMSA has also "supported
the [European Border and Coast Guard Agency, Frontex] in 2018
and 2019 with surveillance along the Portuguese coast."
borders upgraded with new cameras, facial recognition and a barbed
The Spanish government is seeking
a 50% reduction in illegal immigration and to achieve this goal
is deploying new surveillance cameras and facial recognition
technology at its borders with Morocco in Ceuta and Melilla.
The Spanish government also plans to remove the barbed wire fences
at those borders - but the Moroccan government is constructing
solidarity mechanism" on relocation of people rescued at
sea - what does it say?
Germany, France, Italy and Malta
have drafted a declaration
(pdf) establishing a "predictable and efficient temporary
solidarity mechanism" aimed at ensuring the "dignified
disembarkation" of people rescued at sea in the Mediterranean.
If those rescued are eligible for international protection they
will be relocated to a participating EU member state within four
weeks, while ineligible persons will be subject to "effective
and quick return."
Court: Suspending Parliament was unlawful, judges rule
(BBC News, link):
"Boris Johnson's decision
to suspend Parliament was unlawful, the Supreme Court has ruled.
Mr Johnson suspended - or
prorogued - Parliament for five weeks earlier this month, saying
it was to allow a Queen's Speech to outline his new policies.
But the court said it was
wrong to stop Parliament carrying out its duties in the run-up
to the Brexit deadline on 31 October."
Judgment Full-text (pdf)
at border (lesvos.w2eu)
"We want to give back
a piece of dignity, to those who died right here
into the senselessness of the European borders and we
want to thank those who risk their lives to rescue.
All of these dead people have
a face, a name. All of them leave behind relatives and friends.
Besides the bodies also their hopes and dreams are lost."
crisis: latest news from across Europe (17-23.9.19)
for researchers: Statewatch Analyses: 1999-ongoing
Borderline: The EU's New Border Surveillance Initiatives:
Assessing the Costs and Fundamental Rights Implications of EUROSUR
and the "Smart Borders" Proposals (pdf) A study by the
Heinrich Böll Foundation. Written by Dr. Ben Hayes and Mathias
Vermeulen: "Unable to tackle the root of the problem,
the member states are upgrading the Unions external borders.
Such a highly parochial approach taken to a massive scale threatens
some of the EUs fundamental values - under the pretence
that ones own interests are at stake. Such an approach
borders on the inhumane."
How the EU works and justice and home
affairs decision-making (pdf)
20th Anniversary Conference, June 2011: Statewatch
'policy laundering' and the FATF - legalising surveillance, regulating
(pdf) by Ben Hayes
to EU decision-making and justice and home affairs after the
(pdf) by Steve Peers, Professor of Law, University of Essex,
with additional material by Tony Bunyan
Neoconopticon: the EU security-industrial
(pdf) by Ben Hayes
The Shape of Things to Come (pdf) by Tony Bunyan
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