Press Review


19 September 2019
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ASYLUM TREND: Digital Journal: Asylum requests down in developed countries: OECD – According to a report by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), in 2018 applications for asylum in its 36 member countries dropped by 34 percent to 1.09 million last year from 1.65 million in 2016. Refugees represented 14 percent of permanent migrants to the OECD last year, the report said. Most were from Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq and Venezuela. The report stresses that there is no evidence to support public perception that migration is “uncontrolled and costly”.

LATIN AMERICA: Prensa Latina: Venezuela and Ecuador receive the most Colombian refugees – The Colombian Truth Commission, one of the components of the Comprehensive System of Truth, Justice, Reparation and Non-Repetition, stated that the largest numbers of Colombians who fled the country's armed conflict are today residing in Venezuela, Ecuador, Panama and Canada. The registered number of Colombians claiming refugee status from 1984 to June 2019 was 186,638, of which 66,161 are recognized as refugees.
SEARCH & RESCUE: Times of Malta: Watch: Armed Forces Malta rescue 45 people, including pregnant woman, at sea – The Armed Forces Malta (AFM) have rescued 45 people, including a pregnant woman, from a wooden boat carrying migrants in distress at the Mediterranean Sea. The NGO Alarm Phone alerted Maltese authorities to the boat, which was at sea for two days. They arrived in Malta just before 7pm. A spokeswoman for AFM said the pregnant woman was not in danger. This was the second rescue within 24 hours after the AFM took over a group of 90 people rescued by the Italian coastguard.

SEARCH & RESCUE: AnsaMed: Migrant boat sinks off Tunisia, at least eight dead – According to a Tunisian National Guard spokesperson a fishing boat with migrants aboard has sunk off the Tunisian coast of El Aouabed in the Sfax governorate. Nine migrants were rescued and fourteen are missing. The NGO Alarm Phone stated that more deaths are expected to be confirmed.

SEARCH & RESCUE: WELT: „Ocean Viking“ nimmt weitere Bootsflüchtlinge auf  [Ocean Viking takes in more boat refugees] – The rescue vessel Ocean Viking has rescued another 73 people in distress bringing the total of people rescued on board to 182. The ship operated jointly by the NGOs SOS MEDITERANEE and Médecins Sans Frontières rescued 48 and 61 people in separate operations previously this week. On Wednesday more than 100 refugees reached the Italian island of Lampedusa independently by boat.

AGENDA: France 24 : Migrants at top of the agenda as Macron meets Conte in Rome – France 24 reports that migration was a key topic at a meeting Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte and French President Emmanuel Macron in Rome on Wednesday. France has pushed for the EU to show solidarity with Italy by adopting a system that determines what happens to migrants after sea rescues. A meeting next week in Malta of the interior ministers for Italy, France, Germany, Malta and Finland will discuss temporary relocation mechanisms for those rescued in the Mediterranean.
Finland: Finnish Government: Finland to receive 850 refugees under the refugee quota for 2020 – The Finish Government decided that the annual number of quota refugees will be raised from the current 750 to 850 in line with the Government Programme. The Finnish authorities select the quota refugees to be admitted to Finland on the basis of a submission by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR). Finland will receive refugees from Lebanon and Turkey and the DRC. In addition, Finland will receive a total of 130 refugees from Niger, including those evacuated there from Libya. Finland might also receive refugees evacuated from Libya via other countries.
UK: Borders Criminology Blog: Three Years On, Unaccompanied Minors Still in Legal Limbo – Three years after the opening of the so-called ‘Dubs scheme’, giving vulnerable unaccompanied children in Europe a safe and legal route to the UK, the Government has still not filled the 480 places on the scheme. Children have been left in limbo, waiting to be transferred to safety, unable to rebuild their lives. Reports from the ground in northern France highlights extreme neglect and failure to uphold a duty of care towards unaccompanied children circulating in the area.
AUSTRALIA: Green Left Weekly: Refugees organise to end discrimination – Justice for Refugees, a newly-formed refugee and asylum seeker-led organization, coordinated national protests on September 14 to demand an end to the discrimination they face under Australia's onshore asylum seeker policy. The campaign is focused on achieving justice for different groups of refugees in the Australian asylum system and are calling for a fair process that includes Permanent Protection Visas and the granting of family reunion rights.

JORDAN: Jordan says more than 150,000 Syrian refugees have returned home – The Jordanian interior ministry announced that more than 150,000 Syrians have returned home from Jordan since the reopening of a border last October. Amman says it has taken in more than 1.3 million Syrians since the start of the Syrian civil war in 2011, while struggling with its own economic challenges. Of those refugees, 650,000 are registered with the United Nations’ refugee agency.
DW: World in Progress: Somalia's climate refugees – DW reports on climate refugees from Somalia where, over the past 30 years, droughts have become more intense and frequent. In 2019, 100,000 Somalis were displaced by drought. Many Somalis have fled to neighboring Kenya. In the Dadaab refugee camp, Deutsche Welle talked to Somalis who say climate change has forced them out of their homes.

The Guardian: Calais clamps down as asylum seekers say: 'They just beat us': The Guardian reports on the fate of asylum seekers in northern France seeking to cross to the UK. Three years after the so-called ‘Calais Jungle’ was demolished, local authority has turned to force to prevent another camp from forming, with migrants complaining of brutal beatings, regular arrests, and the confiscation of their tents and sleeping bags.
EU Observer: Europe's refugee policy is test of its true 'way of life' – In light of a new Commissioner role in charge of the “protecting the European way of life”, former President of Ireland and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Mary Robinson and former prime minister of Norway Gro Harlem Brundtland reflect on what a “European way of life” means to them. As it is marked by the “shared experience of different peoples, from long-settled communities to new arrivals, living side by side” they regret the anti-immigrant backlash on national and European level and calls on the EU to move forward on agreeing a Union resettlement framework that puts the protection of refugees at its core and endorses the European Parliament's original resettlement proposal.
With kind regards,
Hannah Berwian

Hannah Berwian
Communications Assistant
p: +32 2 234 38 22
a: Rue Royale 146, Brussels

Please note that the information of the press review is taken from publicly available information provided by media companies, organisations and blogs. All the sources are clearly ascribed and ECRE is not claiming any authorship over the content. The Press Review does not necessarily reflect the views of ECRE. This document is just a relay to the original articles and makes it easier to find stories concerning asylum issues. If you are the publisher of some of the information and would like it removed from this document, or if you would like to see a particular story published in the Press Review, please email: 

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