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Refugee crisis: latest news from across Europe
1.11.15



EU-AFRICA:Refugee crisis: Valletta Conference 11-12 November 2015: Update: Latest and full documentation and

See: EXCLUSIVE. EU-Africa: Valletta, the summit of dissent (afronline.org, link) and also: African and European Civil Society Joint Statement: Valletta Summit, 11-12 November, 2015 (thanks to afronline.org, pdf)

Documents

Valletta Summit Political Declaration Version Zero (LIMITE doc no: 13384-15, 23 October 2015, pdf)

Valletta Summit Action Plan - Working Draft Four (LIMITE doc no 12560-rev-3-15, 26 October 2015, pdf)

Valletta Summit on Migration, 11-12 November 2015 (LIMITE doc no: 13153-15, 16 October 2015, pdf)

Valletta Summit Action Plan - Working Draft Three (Limite doc no: 12560-rev-2-15, 12 October 2015, pdf

Valletta Summit Action Plan - Working Draft Two (LIMITE doc no 12560-rev-1-15, 7 October 2015, pdf)

1st
version: Possible elements for the Outcome Document for Valletta - annotated version LIMITE doc no 11534-15, 26 August 2015, pdf)

Background

GAMM-AFRICA: EU Action on Migratory Pressures - A Strategic Response 5th Biannual Update (LIMITE doc no: 16600-14, pdf)

Draft Council Conclusions on the EU Horn of Africa Regional Action Plan 2015-2020 (28 pages, LIMITE doc no: 13200-15, pdf)

""[T]hree issues affecting EU interests in the region have gained particular salience: the influence of the wider region on the Horn of Africa, violent extremism and migration and forced displacement....

"The high number of people in the region who are willing to migrate is by far larger than the limited possibilities of legal avenues for migration, be it within the region or outside. Lack of opportunities for legal migration or complex and expensive procedures mean that many migrants feel that they have no other option than to use irregular channels."

See also: EU: Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nigeria prioritised for "pilot initiative on return" (Statewatch database)

LESVOS, GREECE: We are lfieguards and we are saving lives (link): "We are Proactiva Open Arms, a NGO from Badalona (Barcelona, Spain) and we are dedicated to saving lives in the sea. In the beginning of September we decided to move to the Island of Lesvos to help the refugees that arrive to the Greek coast."

Grcka je hot-spot za izbjeglice, a mi privremeno utocište (slobodnadalmacija.hr, link) [Greece is a hotspot for refugees, and we have temporary shelter]

"According to Ranko Ostoji, Croatian Minister of Intenior, during a statement at the press (30 October 2015), there will be only a hot Spot Greece, while the other Balkan countries have the task to provide a temporary home to people crossing their territory. Applicants to be returned will be evicted and those who have refugee status will be let in to go to countries of the EU.[machine translation] Comment: How "temporary" will be "temporary"? The Minister is describing a "hotspot".

News (30.10.15 - 1.11.15)

Greece: As More Children Drown, Volunteers on Lesbos Say Rescues Are Left Largely to Them (INYT, link)

Health cards to be given to refugees landing in Greece (ekathimerini.com, link): "Greece plans to provide refugees and migrants arriving in the country with a health card, a senior public official said on Saturday. Speaking to Praktoreio FM, General Secretary for Public Health Yiannis Baskozos said the cards would be handed out to each new arrival. “We have decided there should be a health card that will include the basic results of health tests that are carried out and which will be useful for them when they move about within the country or across borders and for their reallocation to other countries,” he said, adding that the cards would be available in around a month." and Six infants drown as migrant boat capsizes off Samos (ekathimerini.com, link): "Eleven migrants including six infants drowned when their boat capsized off the Greek island of Samos, trapping most of them in the cabin, the coast guard said on Sunday. Fifteen others were rescued when the six-meter boat sank in the early hours near the coast of the Aegean island."

German coalition fails to resolve rift on refugees (The Local.de, link): "Germany's ruling coalition failed at crunch talks Sunday to resolve major differences over the country's refugees policy as it braces for the biggest influx since World War II."

Germany restricts refugee access from Austria (The Local.at, link): "Germany said on Friday that asylum seekers would only be able to enter the country at five points along its border with Austria to better control a mass influx."

Europe’s fear of Muslim refugees echoes rhetoric of 1930s anti-Semitism (Washington Post, link): "Over the past year, many in Europe have bristled at the influx -- from far-right political movements and fear-mongering tabloids to established politicians and leaders. The resentment has to do, in part, with the burden of coping with the refugees. But it's also activated a good amount of latent xenophobia--leading to anti-Islam protests, attacks on asylum centers and a good deal of bigoted bluster."

Italy to relocate 100 refugees to France, Spain - immigration chief (Reuters, link) "Italy will send 100 refugees to France and Spain next week as part of a European Union relocation plan aimed at easing the burden on border states, the country's top immigration official said on Friday.... Only Eritreans, Syrians and Iraqis, whose asylum requests have a high rate of acceptance, qualify to be relocated, according to the plan."

Germany: Passau: A border town at the limit (DW, link): "Politicians call it "chaos," the media call it an "onslaught." But Passau's aid workers and police hardly complain. Despite the immense strain, they're managing the ongoing refugee crisis, reports Nemanja Rujevic"

Austria: Racism forces Erasmus student back to UK (The Local.at, link): "A black British student doing an Erasmus year in Salzburg says he left after just three weeks after experiencing “more racism and discrimination than [in his] entire life in London”"

Hundreds of refugees disappear in Germany (The Local.de, link): "Around 700 of the 4,000 refugees who have been housed in Lower Saxony over the past week have gone missing and authorities mostly have no idea who or where they are."

Bulgarian Authorities Detain 495 Illegal Immigrants, 16 Human Smugglers (novinite.com, link): "Bulgarian authorities detained 495 illegally residing foreigners and sixteen human smugglers during a large-scale joint operation of the Interior Ministry and the State Agency for Security (DANS) carried across the country. llowing the operation, actions have been taken against 525 people accused of committing crimes against the political rights of citizens. A total of 2749 police officers from all regional departments of the interior ministry across the country participated in the operation. During the operation, the authorities carried out checks on 2895 sites, 12 820 people and 5987 vehicles, the press service of the interior ministry informs."

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