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Defies Court on Asylum Seekers: Reinstates Containment Policy
That Keeps People Trapped on Islands (joint NGO statment,
"The Greek governments
move on April 20, 2018, overturning a binding court ruling ordering
it to end its abusive policy of trapping asylum seekers on Greeces
islands raises rule of law concerns, 21 human rights and humanitarian
organizations said today."
Rights Agency: interoperability will give authorities unwarranted
access to additional personal data
Interconnecting the EU's policing
and migration databases would make "additional data visible
to authorities who would otherwise not have access," according
to the EU's Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA), despite the Commission's
claims that its "interoperability" proposals would
make no such changes.
crisis: latest news from across Europe (19-24.4.18)
EU: Council of the European
of DUBLIN rules
Proposal for a Regulation of the European
Parliament and of the Council establishing the criteria and mechanisms
for determining the Member State responsible for examining an
application for international protection lodged in one of the
Member States by a third-country national or a stateless person
(recast) (pdf). The
Council developing its negotiating position and: New
Dublin: Reversing the Dynamics (LIMITE doc no: 7674-18,
pdf) In the second and third phases of a (refugee) "crisis"
the European Council will take over:
"The third phase of the
mechanism (marked in red in graphic 2) defines the broad parameters
that will come into play in the event of a severe crisis. The
main responsibilities in this phase lie at the European Council
level. Any measures adopted when this level of pressure is
reached should be based on political direction from the leaders.
As well as the European Council being able to upgrade or prolong
some or all of the measures triggered during the previous phases,
leaders may also decide upon extraordinary measures, depending
on the scope and specific characteristics of the crisis at hand.
All measures decided upon by the leaders will be operationalised
by the Council and implemented by the Commission and Member
States, in line with the directions and guidelines given by
Tony Bunyan, Statewatch Director, comments: "A familiar
pattern is emerging. Llike in the financial crisis the response
to a new "refugee crisis" will lie with the European
Council (EU "Leaders"). Responsibility will thus not
rest with the Justice and Home Affairs Council, the Commission,
the European Parliament or with Member States (and their governments)."
EU: Council of the European Union: Regulation
establishing a European Travel Information and Authorisation
System (ETIAS) and amending Regulations (EU) No 515/2014, (EU)
2016/399, (EU) 2016/794 and (EU) 2016/1624 - Analysis of the
final compromise text with a view to agreement (LIMITE
doc no: 7986-18, pdf): Final compromise text as agreed in trilogue:
"approve the final compromise
texts, as set out in Annex I and II to this note, as well as
the draft declaration regarding the Schengen Associated Countries,
as set out in Annex III to this note."
by migrants against imprisonment on Greek islands attacked by
"Police forced dozens
of migrants, most Afghan asylum-seekers, who had been camped
out on the main square of Lesvos islands capital since
last week, onto buses and transported them to the Moria camp
in the early hours of Monday after downtown Mytilini turned into
a battleground on Sunday."
to be fingerprinted: new EU proposals foresee mandatory biometrics
in national ID cards
The European Commission has proposed
a host of new measures aimed at "denying terrorists the
means to act" which include the mandatory inclusion of two
biometrics - fingerprints and a facial image - in all ID cards
and residence documents for Union citizens and their family members
issued by EU Member States.
"e-evidence" proposals: "maximising risks for
fundamental rights violations"
New proposals from the European
Commission to make cross-border access to electronic data by
police and judicial authorities "easier and faster"
have been described as "a new legal shortcut to bypass existing
measures, maximising risks for fundamental rights violations,"
by the civil society organisation European Digital Rights (EDRi),
of which Statewatch is a member.
of the Open Arms rescue boat and the case against the crew: background,
documentation and sources
On 16 April 2018 Statewatch published
an analysis entitled 'The seizure of the Open Arms boat as a
paradigm of the European Union's war on human rights', examining
the charges levelled at the crew of the boat and the vessel's
sequestration in Sicily. This page provides background information
and documentation relevant to the case and the broader situation.
Common European Asylum System: Qualification
Directive: 6th trilogue - State of Play (178 pages, pdf):
Four column do/document with the Commission proposal, Council
and European Parliament positions and "compromise"
"In order to facilitate
the reading, these parts have been highlighted in in the table
below as follows:
- the parts in yellow concern cross-references to other proposals
which depend on the finalisation of the CEAS package;
- the parts in in green mark the elements upo which agreement
has been confirmed;
- the parts in blue mark the elements upon which the agreement
reached at technical level has to be confirmed at political level.
New text in the fourth column compared to the COM proposal is
marked in bold and new text compared to the previous version
of the table is marked in underline. Deleted text in the fourth
column compared to COM proposal is marked with [
Data Protection Supervisor: interoperability of biometric databases
poses fundamental risks and must be widely debated
In an opinion published today
the European Data Protection Supervisor warns that the European
Commission's proposals to interconnect the EU's large-scale biometric
databases would "change the way in which fundamental legal
principles in this area have traditionally been interpreted,"
and calls for a "wider debate on the future of information
exchange in the EU, the governance of interoperable databases
and the safeguarding of fundamental rights."
EU: Confiscation orders:
Council of the European Union: Proposal
for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council
on the mutual recognition of freezing and confiscation orders
- Revised four column table following the third trilogue on 20
March and the technical meeting on 22 March 2018 (LIMITE
doc no: 7525-18, pdf): Four- column document with the Commission
proposal, the positions of the Council and the European Parliament
and the "compromise" position:
"In the fourth column,
the texts as provisionally agreed during the technical trilogues
are marked by green. Issues that were also discussed, but on
which no (full) provisional agreement was reached yet, are marked
"Nothing is agreed until
everything is agreed""
of police deployed to destroy ten-year-old land occupation in
Since 9 April some 2,500 police
officers have been engaged in the destruction of a ten-year old
land occupation near Nantes known as the ZAD, which was originally
established in 2008 to try to prevent the construction of an
Desperate Journeys report provides snapshot of changing refugee
movements to Europe
Despite a drop in the number
of refugees and migrants reaching Europe last year, the dangers
many face along the way have in some cases increased, according
to a new report by UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, setting out
changing patterns of movement.
limited election observation mission: Statement of preliminary
findings and conclusions (pdf):
"The 8 April parliamentary
elections were characterized by a pervasive overlap between state
and ruling party resources, undermining contestants ability
to compete on an equal basis. Voters had a wide range of political
options but intimidating and xenophobic rhetoric, media bias
and opaque campaign financing constricted the space for genuine
political debate, hindering voters ability to make a fully-informed
choice. The technical administration of the elections was professional
in Transit 2018: Confronting illiberalism (Freedom House,
"In 2018, Nations in
Transit registered the most score declines in the projects
23-year history: 19 of the 29 countries had declines in their
overall Democracy Scores. For the second year in a row, there
are more Consolidated Authoritarian Regimes than Consolidated
Committee calls for a co-ordinated European approach to address
mass migratory arrivals in Italy (link):
"The European Committee
for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment
or Punishment (CPT) published today a report on an ad hoc visit
conducted in Italy to examine the situation of foreign nationals
deprived of their liberty in the so-called hotspots
and immigration detention centres, in a context of large-scale
arrivals from North Africa.
The CPT recognises the significant
challenges faced by the Italian authorities regarding the influx
of new arrivals by sea. It also acknowledges the substantial
efforts in carrying out rescue operations and in providing shelter
and support to the hundreds of thousands of refugees, asylum
seekers and migrants currently present in the country. In this
framework, the CPT recalls the need for a co-ordinated European
approach and support system to address the phenomenon of mass
And see: Executive
Summary (pdf) and Full
votes to keep prime minister and right wing in power
Orban, Hungarys staunchly anti-migrant prime minister,
was reelected Sunday after his right-wing Fidesz party was projected
to win a supermajority of seats in parliament. The resounding
victory will probably permit Orbans government to continue
with democratic backsliding."
Greece Statement by 5 of the accused of the Moria 35 Take
"On the 20 April, we are
scheduled to attend trial in Chios after waiting nine months,
trapped on Lesvos, while 30 of our brothers unjustly have waited
in prison for this same time period.
Our humanity has been denied
since we stepped foot in Europe, the supposed cradle of democracy
and human rights. Since we arrived we have been forced to live
in horrible conditions, our asylum cases are not taken seriously,
and most Africans are denied residency in Europe and face deportation.
We are treated like criminals, simply for crossing a border that
Europeans can freely cross."
Statewatch Analysis: Suspicion
files: German police databases on political activists
(pdf) by Matthias Monroy:
German authorities use a number
of databases that collect data on political activists, even if
they hadn't been sentenced or tried. Names are stored if people
have had their identity checked, or if they have registered a
demonstration under their name. Many are recorded under false
designations. Such entries have raised concerns around them being
used for further repression, including the revocation of journalists
accreditation. Discriminatory and stigmatising labels have also
been applied to people whose data is held by the police.
for researchers: Statewatch Analyses: 1999-ongoing
Borderline: The EU's New Border Surveillance Initiatives:
Assessing the Costs and Fundamental Rights Implications of EUROSUR
and the "Smart Borders" Proposals (pdf) A study by the
Heinrich Böll Foundation. Written by Dr. Ben Hayes and Mathias
Vermeulen: "Unable to tackle the root of the problem,
the member states are upgrading the Unions external borders.
Such a highly parochial approach taken to a massive scale threatens
some of the EUs fundamental values - under the pretence
that ones own interests are at stake. Such an approach
borders on the inhumane."
How the EU works and justice and home
affairs decision-making (pdf)
20th Anniversary Conference, June 2011: Statewatch
'policy laundering' and the FATF - legalising surveillance, regulating
(pdf) by Ben Hayes
to EU decision-making and justice and home affairs after the
(pdf) by Steve Peers, Professor of Law, University of Essex,
with additional material by Tony Bunyan
Neoconopticon: the EU security-industrial
(pdf) by Ben Hayes
The Shape of Things to Come (pdf) by Tony Bunyan
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