Refugee crisis: latest news from across Europe
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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
EU: European Commission belatedly make available: Africa: "Partnership Frameworks" report
Third Progress Report on the Partnership Framework with third countries under the European Agenda on Migration (pdf):
"this Report is linked to the renewed Action Plan on a more effective return policy and the Recommendation on the implementation of the Return Directive adopted in parallel by the Commission. Substantial progress on returns also depends on making legal and administrative processes inside the EU simpler and more effective, and also on ensuring full cooperation with third countries of origin....
The Commission, in close cooperation with the European External Action Service, will take stock of the approach and its results in reducing irregular migration flows, addressing its root causes and improving return rates when it reports in June, one year on from the launch of the Partnership Framework....
Progress in the negotiations of the EU-Nigeria readmission agreement is of the utmost importance: the first round took place in October 2016, but a second round of talks has been postponed several times by Nigeria...
Dialogue and cooperation with Mali on return suffered a setback following inaccurate media reports in December 2016 about the signature of a formal agreement on return with the EU which never took place, and Mali did not sign Operating Procedures on readmission." [emphasis added]
Comment. "Confusion" in the media was caused by the EU trying to "jump the gun" by saying it had signed the agreement - but Mali had not agreed: see: Mali denies agreement on failed EU asylum seekers (Modern Ghana, link)
Returns and readmission via "Partnership Frameworks" with African states: Commission calls for accelerated delivery under the Migration Partnership Framework and further actions along the Central Mediterranean Route (Press release) pdf) including "Factsheets" on target African state:
"Tangible progress has been made with the five African priority countries, Ethiopia, Niger, Nigeria, Mali and Senegal but efforts need to be stepped up to deliver results. Along the Central Mediterranean route, work is taken forward to better manage migration, continue saving lives, step up the fight against smugglers and traffickers and offer protection to migrants in need and increase
resettlement and assisted voluntary returns."
Annex (pdf): Detailed targets for "priority" states.
Secretive High Level Working Group hides EU's push for the return of refugees and quasi-readmission agreements (Statewatch)
New proposals on migration: "partnerships" with third countries, Blue Card reform, integration plan (Statewatch)
Viewpoint: Migration, EU cooperation and authoritarianism (Statewatch, pdf)
EU-Africa: Fortress Europes neo-colonial project (Statewatch, pdf)
Migrant Ill -Treatment in Greek Law Enforcement Are the Strasbourg Court Judgments the Tip of the Iceberg? (link): Nikolaos Sitaropoulos, Office of the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights:
"The present paper aims to provide an analysis of the first major judgments of the Strasbourg Court which usefully shed light on the underlying, long-standing systemic failures of the Greek rule of law. The author argues that these judgments are in fact only the tip of the iceberg. For this the paper looks into the process of supervision of these judgments execution by Greece, which is pending before the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers, as well as into alarming reports issued notably by CPT as well as by the Greek Ombudsman."
Are You Syrious (1.3.17, link)
GREECE: Islands - official registration
"139 people have been officially registred today on the Greek islands. For the first time since January 30 new arrivals are registred on the island of Leros: 27 people. Another 71 have been registred on Samos and 41 on other islands.
During the month of February no people were registred on Leros, while 51 person was registred on Kos, 117 on Samos, 198 on Lesvos, 274 on Chios and 333 on other islands, making a total of 974 people officially registred in February."
ITALY: Higher number of arrivals to Italy
"IOM Rome reports that 13,457 migrant arrivals in Italy before the end of February represents a significant increase compared with arrivals in the same period during each of the past two years. Last year just fewer than 9,000 migrants had arrived by this date. IOM notes that Italian arrivals already are well above those recorded during the first two months of either 2015 or 2016.
Deaths at sea in the region this year also are running well ahead of fatalities in 2016, especially on the Mediterraneans central route linking Libya and Italy. IOMs Missing Migrants Project reports an estimated 444 deaths or disappearances of migrants on this corridor through 26 February, compared with 97 last year at this time - an increase of almost 400 percent."
EU: Relocation from Greece still too slow (News That Moves, link):
"In a fact sheet issued on March 2nd, the European Commission released updated information about the progress concerning the relocation program that EU member states had agreed to in September 2015.
The European Commission stated that 20.000 people currently in Greece are eligible for relocation to other EU member states.
Only 9,600 have been relocated from Greece. Last December, the EU proposed a target of 3,000 relocation per month for Greece.
However, the current pace of relocation in Greece is about 1,000 people per month, the European Commission noted, adding that the total number relocated from Greece by September 2017 would be around 16,400 people."
EU-TURKEY DEAL: Question to the Commission: Effects of the General Courts orders on the EU-Turkey Statement (pdf) from Barbara Spinelli MEP:
"if the EU-Turkey Statement had to be considered an international instrument, what would be the legal basis for the involvement of the EU institutions in its implementation?
Does the Commission consider the commitments already made on the basis of this text to be compatible with the orders issued by the General Court?"
See: EU-Turkey deal: who is responsible? Not the EU, says the Court of Justice
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