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Refugee crisis: latest news from across Europe
7-8.1.17
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Keep in touch: Statewatch Observatory: Refugee crisis in the Med and inside the EU: Daily news (updated through the day), commentaries and official documents
Greece:
Moria: Thousands of Refugees live in tents covered by snow (Keep Talking Greece, link):

"Literally buried in the snow were the tents providing shelter to several thousands of refugees and migrants in the camp of Moria. The snow weather stroke the island of Lesvos and neighboring islands of Chios and had the thousands living in tents desperately seeking protection and warmth.

Many of the Moria residents saw snow for the first time in their lives. It might have been a pleasant experience if it wasn’t for having to live in the snow.

The tents of UN High Commissioner could not protect them from the extremely low temperature."

Two more migrants die in Bulgaria’s Borderlands (Bordermonitoring Bulgaria, link):

"On the 6th of January, the Bulgarian Border Police made the case of two more dead people public, who were found by villagers near the village of Izvor in the region of Burgas near the Strandzha mountain massif. They had died of exposure to low temperatures. It was reported that the two Iraqi men were 28 and 35 years old. Only four days ago a Somali woman died in the same region."

UK: Deportation Charter Flights: Collective Expulsion in 2017 (Corporate Watch, link):

"In 2013, Corporate Watch published a research report titled “Collective Expulsion: the case against mass deportation charter flights”. Three years later, not much has changed. The UK continues to make political deportation deals with governments of its former colonies and war zones. Almost 2,000 people a year are still loaded onto secretive night flights from Stansted airport, handcuffed by private security “escorts”, in one of the most brutal facets of the detention and deportation regime.

This factsheet updates recent facts and figures, but doesn't supplant the more in-depth analysis in the 2013 report. It also adds a new section containing short summary profiles of some of the main companies involved in the charter flight business: security guards Tascor (a subsidiary of Capita), plane charter company Titan Airways, and travel bookers Carlson Wagonlit."

See: Report (pdf, link)

Philippa Kempson from Lesvos, Greece: (FB link, 6.1.17)

"Early this evening in Moria.
Sub zero temperatures on the way!
These conditions are deliberate and criminal.
I find myself wondering how many fatalities and hospital cases will it take to stop this?
Would the policies of Europe even change if there were deaths due to these conditions?
The powers that be are acting like winter is a surprise!!!
I'm sure it happens every year!
These deliberate and inhumane policies of torture should be investigated and prosecuted!
Human right seem to depend on the color of your skin or your religion.
Are these people not human? how can we sleep when our governments advocate a deliberate policy of torture against those who make us feel uncomfortable because they are not from here?
Those responsible for this barbarism should be tried for crimes against humanity!
These are HUMANS!!!!"

Thousands of refugees left in cold, as UN and EU accused of mismanagement - United Nations refugee agency and EU’s Echo aid department accused of failing to properly ‘winterise’ camps (Guardian, link):

"The UN refugee agency and the EU’s aid department have been accused by other aid groups of mismanaging a multimillion-pound fund earmarked for the most vulnerable refugees in Europe, leaving thousands sleeping in freezing conditions in Greece.

The Greek government, which has ultimate jurisdiction over camp activities, has also been criticised for failing to use nearly €90m (£75m) of separate EU funding to adequately improve conditions at the camps before the onset of winter. No single actor has overall control of all funding and management decisions in the camps, allowing most parties to distance themselves from blame.....

The head of Medécins Sans Frontières in Greece, Loic Jaeger, described the situation as a failure. “We are outraged about the positive communications [from UNHCR and the EU] that are completely disconnected with reality,” said Jaeger, speaking before UNHCR began to admit flaws in the process on 9 December."

French court acquits researcher who helped illegal migrants find shelter (France 24 News, link):

"A Nice court acquitted a Frenchman caught giving a lift to three illegal migrants in the latest case to highlight the actions of citizens in the now famous “rebel valley”, who claim it is their civic duty to help those in need.

Prosecutors had requested a six-month suspended jail term for the 45-year-old university researcher, who was stopped by police in October on the French Riviera, with three Eritrean women in his car."

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