Launched in 1999 and updated regularly, Statewatch News includes our own reporting and writing as well as articles, announcements, documents and analyses from elsewhere on civil liberties, EU policies and state practices. You can receive updates in your inbox by signing up to our mailing list, or use an RSS feed to get instant alerts.

31 October 2019

No-deal Brexit still possible, EU's Michel Barnier warns

"Chief negotiator says no-deal could happen in March 2020 or December 2020 as things stand. (...)"

31 October 2019

Greece must urgently transfer asylum seekers from the Aegean islands and improve living conditions in reception facilities

“The situation of migrants, including asylum seekers, in the Greek Aegean islands has dramatically worsened over the past 12 months. Urgent measures are needed to address the desperate conditions in which thousands of human beings are living,” said today the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, Dunja Mijatovic, at the end of a five-day visit to Greece during which she visited reception facilities in Lesvos, Samos, and Corinth."

31 October 2019

UK: Activating Newham: Community & Activism 1980-1991An ambitious new project exploring different communities’ experiences of racism in Newham during the 1980s and now

"In partnership with the Institute of Race Relations and supported by Rabbits Road Press, Create are supporting a group of young people to develop an ambitious new oral history project that will take the history and legacy anti-racist organising in the 1980s as a starting point from which to explore different communities’ experiences of racism in Newham then and now."

31 October 2019

Racist violence – ‘It’s become normalised’

"Racist violence involving public order offences, physical attack and criminal damage has increased, but the Home Office and the media are in denial as to the real causes."

30 October 2019

Migration and the Shrinking Humanitarian Space in EuropeFrom maritime search and rescue operations to contested humanitarian action in EU countries

"As of October 10th, 1071 deaths of migrants were recorded in the Mediterranean in 2019. In their attempt to save lives, civilian maritime search and rescue organisations like Sea Watch or Proactive Open Arms have gained high levels of media attention over the last years. Cases such as the arrest of the captain of the Sea Watch 3, Carola Rackete, in June 2019 or the three weeks odyssey of Open Arms in August 2019 dominate the media and public discourse in Europe."

30 October 2019

Commission expects Greek reply to allegations of migrants’ mistreatment

"The European Commission expects the Greek authorities to follow up on the allegations of the Turkish ministry of foreign affairs over migrants’ mistreatment and the illegal practice of “pushback”, a Commission spokesperson has said."

29 October 2019

Did you say 'deal' on migration? ... or was it 'meal'?

"Yet we still blame asylum seekers – and only asylum seekers – for a crisis brought on directly by the incompetence, nonchalance, and sheer ‘couldn’t-care-less’ attitude of the politicians we rely on to solve all our migration and national security problems (but who are really the cause of all these problems to begin with)."

29 October 2019

Greece: Asylum Overhaul Threatens Rights - Remove All Abusive Articles Before Passing Law

"Greece’s parliament should scrap provisions in a new bill that threaten to limit asylum seekers’ access to protection, Human Rights Watch said today. The draft law, to be debated in parliament this week, would reduce safeguards for asylum seekers from countries like Afghanistan, Syria, and Iraq in an effort to block the arrival of migrants and refugees in Greece, per a 2016 European Union (EU) migration deal with Turkey."

29 October 2019

What drives African migrants to risk their lives?

"A UN study says that a majority of irregular migrants who made the fraught journey from Africa to Europe would do so again, despite knowing the dangers of the trip. Achim Steiner, head of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), explains why."

29 October 2019

French privacy watchdog says facial recognition trial in high schools is illegal

"Though non-binding, the opinion hands a victory to digital rights groups, parents and teachers’ unions that opposed the experiment."

28 October 2019

European Arrest Warrant: Case C-128/18 Dorobantu – the Aftermath of Aranyosi and Caldararu

"...due to the fact that the questions in the present case were concentrated on the minimum standards of detention conditions, the Court in Dorobantu took a further step to a more detailed explanation of what factors are important for this assessment. Particularly, the issue of personal space and how to calculate it (sanitary facilities, furniture), where the Court aligned again with the ECtHR, to overcome the lack of minimum standards as regards the interpretation of Article 4 of the Charter."

28 October 2019

Refugee crisis: latest news from across Europe (22-28.10.19)

Refugee crisis: latest news from across Europe (22-28.10.19) including: EU centrists ally with far right on migrant rescues Greek asylum proposal "blatantly undermines" rights UNHCR probes Libya-Malta interception in migrant rescue

28 October 2019


"This report reveals that, contrary to the Turkish authorities’ claims that they do not deport anyone to Syria, in mid-2019it is likely that hundreds of people across Turkeywereswept up, detained, and transported against their will to one of the world’s most dangerous countries.Many people were deported from Istanbul, and were apprehended while they were working or walking down the street. Amnesty International documented 20 detailed cases of forced returns between 25May and 13 September 2019, with most (14) in July."

28 October 2019

Data retention under scrutiny: EDPS makes case at EU Court of Justice

"Confidentiality of communications is essential for the functioning of a modern, democratic society. On 9 - 10 September 2019, the EDPS was invited to appear before the EU Court of Justice (CJEU) in a joint hearing in a number of cases primarily relating to the retention of telecommunications data and to regimes governing access to electronic communications data by State authorities."

28 October 2019

Facial recognition: A solution in search of a problem?

"It is undeniable that facial recognition, the biometric application used to identify or verify a person’s identity, has become increasingly present in many aspects of daily life. It is used for ‘tagging’ people on social media platforms and to unlock smart phones. In China it is used for airport check-in, for monitoring the attentiveness of pupils at school and even for dispensing paper in public latrines."

26 October 2019

UK-EU: Migrant deaths: Britain faces exclusion from elite EU policing unit

"The UK faces being excluded from Europe’s anti-trafficking unit after Brexit, senior MPs and experts warned last night. The unit is coordinating international investigations into the deaths of 39 people whose bodies were found in the back of a lorry in Essex last week."

26 October 2019

Libya authorities 'fire warning shots' at migrant rescue ship

"Libyan authorities fired warning shots in the air and pointed mounted guns at rescuers and migrants, according to the humanitarian group Sea-Eye. A group spokesman said the act was unprecedented."

25 October 2019

EU migration agenda highlights its shortcomings

This can mean the application of more broad policy leverage. In this respect, the revised EU Visa Code, in force from February 2020, will be one important additional tool, providing the EU the possibility to adopt restrictive visa measures for third countries which do not cooperate sufficiently on readmission.

25 October 2019

New Technologies: Europol sets up an "Innovation Laboratory"

"The EU interior ministers want to respond to the "challenges and opportunities“ of new technologies. The focus is on 5G networks, artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, drones, 3D printing and improved decryption."

24 October 2019

‘It’s the jungle’: Bosnian migrant camp in crisis

"No running water, putrid portable toilets and surrounding woods littered with land mines – these are the bleak conditions of a camp where hundreds of migrants brace for winter in Bosnia."


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