EU: Refugee crisis: latest news from across Europe 30.4-2.5.18

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Refugee crisis: latest news from across Europe
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Keep in touch: Statewatch Observatory: Refugee crisis in the Med and inside the EU: Daily news (updated through the day), commentaries and official documents
EU: How age limits children’s access to rights: reports on minimum age requirements in asylum and judicial proceedings

Only four EU Member States prohibit the solitary confinement of child detainees even though such detention can harm a child’s health and development. This is just one of the many ways age limits can impact child’s rights, outlined in a new European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights report. It suggests how Member States can remove inconsistencies to better deliver child protection.

Our data doubles: how biometric surveillance ushers in new orders of control(OpenDemocracy, link):

"The use of biometric data brings the border within the body: algorithms' apparent objectivity and efficiency obscure the brutality of the tasks they accomplish, deciding who is fit to stay or go, who to live or die."

GREECE: Lesvos: 17 locals to be charged for attacks against refugees, migrants and police (Keep Talking Greece, link):

"Police authorities on the island of Lesvos have prepared case files against 17 locals for the attacks against refugees, migrants and police officers last Sunday. According to local media, 5 of the suspects will be charged with felony charges, while the remaining 12 will face charges for misdemeanors offenses.

The case files reportedly refer to the first group of people who have been identified as being involved in the attacks against refugees and migrants but also policemen on Sappho Square in the capital of the island."

UK: Who is immigration policy for? The media-politics of the hostile environment (Corporate Watch, link):

"Most basically, migration figures continue to rise, while the ineffectiveness of vicious Immigration Enforcement measures is an open secret amongst Home Office officials. In fact the level of resources – and violence – required to really seal borders would go well beyond anything yet seen.

So what really drives the hostile environment policies? Our new report “Who is immigration policy for?” examines the following key points:

  • Immigration policy isn’t really about controlling migration, it’s about making a show of control. It is a spectacle, an emotional performance. In practice, this means attacking a few scapegoats seen as “low value” by business – often, the most vulnerable migrants such as refugees, so-called “illegals”, or others without the right documents.
  • The primary audiences for the spectacle of immigration control are specific “target publics”: some older white people who are key voters and media consumers, and who have high anxiety about migration – but who make up only around 20% of the population.
  • Policies are drawn up by politicians and advisors in close interaction with big media. Political and media elites share a dense “ecosystem”, and anti-migrant clampdowns are part of their internal jostling for power – votes, promotions, audience share.
  • Migration scares and clampdowns are part of a broader pattern – the anxiety engine that drives much of politics today, fuelled by stories of threat and control.

You can read the full report here on the web – or download it here as a PDF document (60 pages)."

See also: Summary: Who is immigration policy for? Hostile Environment and anxiety media-politics (link to pdf)

Data shows migration more strongly linked to aspiration than desperation (EU Science Hub, link):

"A new global analysis of intentions to migrate suggests that individuals preparing to move abroad are more likely to do so out of aspiration for a better life, economic opportunities and development of skills, rather than sheer desperation.

While the analysis does not include individuals who are forced to migrate, such as refugees and asylum seekers, it provides valuable insights on voluntary migrants.

Between 2010 and 2015, around 30% of the population of 157 countries around the world expressed a wish to move abroad, while less than 1% have actually migrated.

The analysis finds that while being dissatisfied with one’s own standard of living is associated with a higher probability to desire and to plan a move abroad, the link with making concrete preparations is less clear."

See: EU Joint Research Centre technical report: A global analysis of intentions to migrate(pdf)

Greece reinforces land border with Turkey to stem flow of migrants (Guardian, link):

"Athens rushes to counter fears of new crisis after arrival of nearly 3,000 people in April.

Greece has rushed to reinforce its land border with Turkey as fears mount over a sharp rise in the number of refugees and migrants crossing the frontier.

Police patrols were augmented as local authorities said the increase in arrivals had become reminiscent of the influx of migrants on the Aegean islands close to the Turkish coast. About 2,900 people crossed the land border in April, by far surpassing the number who arrived by sea, the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) said. The figure represents half of the total number of crossings during the whole of 2017."

UK: Lord Dubs tables Brexit bill amendment to give young refugees sanctuary (Guardian, link):

"Refugee campaigner Lord Dubs has tabled a Brexit bill amendment to force the government to continue to give refugee children sanctuary post-Brexit.

Dubs has tabled an amendment to the European Union (withdrawal) bill that will include a specific provision for unaccompanied refugee minors stranded on the continent who have family in the UK already.

He said he found the Windrush scandal “shameful” and the amendment was important to ensure the “cold indifference” of the government was not the determining factor when it came to children seeking refuge for war and conflict zones."

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