Press Review


26 July 2019
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MIDDLE EAST: MEMO: Human rights centre calls for rescue of Syrian refugees in Saudi Arabia – According to a statement by the NGO Paris Francophone Institute for Freedom, about 90 Syrian families who had been hosted by Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz, were expelled this week. The Paris Institute has reported testimonies of Syrian deportees stating that they were physically assaulted and intimidated by the Saudi security authorities during their expulsion and deportation.
MEDITERRANEAN: The Guardian: Up to 150 feared dead as boats capsize off Libya – Up to 150 people attempting the sea crossing from Libya to Europe are missing and feared drowned after two boats capsized on Thursday. The Libyan coastguard reportedly rescued about 137 people and returned them to Libya. They had recovered one body so far. If the toll is confirmed, it would be the highest from a shipwreck in the Mediterranean this year.

See also: HRW: EU Moves Toward Agreement on Sharing Responsibility for Migrants and Refugees.

EU-TURKEY: Ekhatimerini: EU Commission reacts to Cavusoglu comments on migration deal – The European Commission reacted to comments by Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu who earlier this week suggested that Ankara will cancel a migrant readmission agreement with the European Union should the bloc fail to deliver on its promise of visa-free travel for Turkish citizens. A Commission spokesperson said that the two sides are still committed to implementing the so-called “joint statement,” adding that the enforcement of the EU-Turkey deal remains a condition for visa liberalization.

SEARCH & RESCUE: SZ: "Sea-Watch"-Kapitänin soll vor Europaabgeordneten sprechen [Sea Watch Captain to speak in front of European Parliament] – Carola Rackete, captain of the civilian SAR vessel Sea-Watch-3 has been invited to speak in front of the committee for Liberty and Home Affairs (LIBE) of the European Parliament on October 3 in a hearing regarding sea rescue. A majority of the committee could still prevent her appearance. At the end of June, Rackete had defied Italian authorities in order to bring a group of migrants she rescued in the Mediterranean to the port of Lampedusa.                                                                                                                                                                 
EU BORDERS: Osservatorio Dritti: Ventimiglia: Ventimiglia: sempre più caro e pericoloso il viaggio dei migranti al confine Italia-Francia [The journey of migrants to the Italy-France border is increasingly expensive and dangerous] – Osservatorio Dritti reports on the situation for migrants at the border between France and Italy. Crossing the border between Italy and France has become riskier and more expensive. Rights abuses, push-back and detention are common practices.
GERMANY: GayStarNews: Germany is more likely to grant asylum to 'flamboyant' LGBTI refugees – Gay Star News reports on a study that found that Muslim queer refugees are more likely to be granted asylum if they conform to Western stereotypes. The study, published in the journal Ethnic and Racial Studies, found that LGBTI asylum applicants reported they were often expected to be ‘flamboyant’ and ‘outspoken’ in their asylum interview. Accordingly 98% of asylum claims by lesbian women from sub-Saharan Africa were rejected.
HUNGARY: European Commission: Commission takes Hungary to Court for criminalising activities in support of asylum seekers and opens new infringement for non-provision of food in transit zones – The European Commission refers Hungary to the Court of Justice of the EU concerning legislation that criminalises activities in support of asylum applications and further restricts the right to request asylum. They also opened infrigement procedure concerning the non-provision of food to persons awaiting return who are detained in the Hungarian transit zones at the border with Serbia.

See more: FT: Brussels takes Hungary to court over crackdown on migrants.
Refugee Host: DEVELOPMENTALISING HUMANITARIAN SPACE: QUESTIONING THE VALUE OF DEVELOPMENT APPROACHES TO PROTRACTED DISPLACEMENT – Researcher Katharina Schmidt examines development approaches to displacement in programmes developed in Jordan following the Compact agreement of 2016. Problematising these schemes from a refugee rights based perspective, Schmidt highlights the difficulties arising from refugees’ lack of rights in housing and employment in their host countries.

Brookings: The climate crisis, migration, and refugees – This policy brief ccommissioned for the 16th annual Brookings Blum Roundtable “2020 and beyond: Maintaining the bipartisan narrative on US global development” discusses the challenges of predicted levels of climate migration. Looking into challenges and solutions, it argues that its scope and scale will test the limits of national and global governance as well as international cooperation.

The conversation: Spain’s model for saving lives at sea should be emulated in the EU – As EU member states have suspended SAR missions and are struggling to agree on arrangement for disembarkation of those rescued, researcher Luna Vives argues that Spain’s approach to saving lives at sea through its publicly owned search-and-rescue agency, Salvamento Marítimo (SASEMAR), is a viable alternative to relying on the military or humanitarian organizations to do the job.

The UN Dispatch: The Trump Administration’s Assault on Refugees and Asylum Seekers Enters a New Phase – In this podcast episode, Mark Leon Goldberg and Eric Schwartz discuss the Trump administration’s incremental crackdown on refugees and asylum seekers as well as the global implications of the fact that the United States cannot be meaningfully relied on to advocate for the their rights around the world. Eric Schwartz is the president of Refugees International and also served as Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees, and Migration in the Obama administration.
Neos Komos: Refugees wanted to be heard, so they started the Migratory Birds newspaper – Two Afghan girls who met at Schisto refugee camp in Athens founded the newspaper Migratory Birds to tell people about the realities of life for refugees in Schisto. The task gave a sense of normalcy to their lives though they faced many prejudice in their community. Today the newspaper has a circulation of 13,000, and is printed in five language mission.
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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