Refugee crisis: latest news from across Europe (1.7.16): Hungary jails migrants for "violating the border fence"; warning over new Frontex powers; UNHCR statistics on June arrivals in Greece; and more.


- Hungary jails 10 migrants for up to three years (EUobserver, link): "A Hungarian court on Friday sentenced 10 migrants, mostly Syrians, to between one and three years in jail for illegally crossing the border during a riot in September 2015, after Hungary built a fence to seal its border with Serbia. This was the first case tried under a law passed a few days before the incident making illegal border crossing punishable by one to five years in prison."

Background: Refugee crisis: "show trials" for "violating the border fence" (Statewatch News Online, 30.6.16)

- EU: Warning over new Frontex agency's data-gathering powers, lack of accountability and overseas deployments without oversight

With the full European Parliament due to vote on the proposed new Frontex Regulation on 6 July, the Frontexit campaign has called on MEPs to reject the text, warning that it provides new powers to gather and exchange personal data without the necessary safeguards; establishes a new complaint mechanism that does not meet the required standards of independence; and permits increased overseas deployments by the agency "away from any oversight by the European Parliament or national parliaments."

- UNHCR: June arrivals in Greece

The total number of people arriving in Greece in June was 1,448, according to the UNHCR. Over the last week the numbers were:

  • 24 June: 13
  • 25 June: 24
  • 26 June: 134
  • 27 June: 55
  • 28 June: 0
  • 29 June: 5
  • 30 June: 62

    - Europe tries to buy its way out of the migration crisis (IRIN, link): "This week’s European Council meeting was dominated by reactions to Britain’s referendum result, but on Tuesday EU leaders took a decision that has far-reaching consequences for people forced or wishing to migrate from more than a dozen countries in Africa and Asia.

    Under the Partnership Framework with third countries, which the council adopted, 16 countries of origin and transit for migrants will be pressured to cooperate with the EU’s goals on curbing migration. Their compliance is to be rewarded with various “incentives” including development aid and trade deals. Non-cooperation will be met with unspecified “negative incentives” – presumably the withholding of aid and trade.

    Ahead of yesterday’s meeting, 124 NGOs issued a joint statement condemning the proposed policy and urging EU leaders to reject it in favour of more sustainable and long-term strategies for migration management and the delivery of development aid."


    - News (1.7.16)

    Croatia puts up barrier at Serbia border (Politico, link): "Croatia installed a barrier on a bridge over the Danube river that forms part of its border with Serbia to prevent migrants from entering the country, a police statement said on Thursday.

    Police said it was intended to stop “potential attempts by migrants to illegally enter” Croatia over the Batina crossing. Technical barriers have been installed at the crossing that “can be activated in case of an urgent need and in line with the security measures,” the statement said."


    Denmark takes cash from migrants (New Europe, link): "Denmark has confiscated more than 10,000 kroner worth of cash, jewellery and other valuables from migrants arriving to the country under a controversial law that was passed in February.

    According to the Agence France-Presse (AFP), Danish police announced on June 30 they confiscated cash worth nearly €11,000 from five migrants trying to enter the country with fake identity papers. The two men and three women between the ages of 26 and 35 with Iranian nationality were arrested at Copenhagen’s airport. All five have asked for asylum and their request is under review, according to the police."


    Migrants die as dinghy sinks off Libya (BBC News, link): "At least 10 people drowned and more than 100 others were rescued when an inflatable boat carrying migrants capsized 32km (20 miles) off Libya.

    Those who died were all women, Italian reports said.

    The latest migrant tragedy came as the Italian navy raised to the surface a boat that sank with the loss of more than 700 lives.

    The April 2015 sinking was the worst loss of human life since the influx of migrants began in 2013."
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