Tag Archives: EU-Turkey deal

Persecuted Kurdish People in Lesvos Release Statement to Authorities.

Via #opentheislands, June 8th 2018 – The Kurdish individuals who are temporarily living in Pikpa Camp in Lesvos have released a statement demanding that Greek and European authorities protect their rights. These individuals fled war and persecution in Syria and Turkey and on 25 May 2018 they faced further violence in Moria Camp. The extreme violence they have fled and that they continue to face in Lesvos, Greece has left several injured and traumatized. Their trauma has not ended however, as Moria camp administration have this week threatened them with deportation to Turkey if they do not return to Moria Camp, which would subject them to collective expulsion and persecution in Turkey, in violation of human rights and refugee law.

Their statement and demands are found below in Greek and English.

ENG – Letter Kurdish 8 June

GREEK – Letter Kurdish 8 June

Continue reading Persecuted Kurdish People in Lesvos Release Statement to Authorities.

Seeking refuge from the hotspots: asylum seekers required to return to Moria despite concerns

Via ECRE – Following an intense conflict at the Moria hotspot, on Lesvos, Greece on 25 May 2018, which left at least 70 people injured, a group of nearly 1,000 people, including families with young children, fled the violence and sought protection in other areas of Lesbos. This led to other facilities being overcrowded despite the efforts of civil society organisations and residents. Around 600 people went to a makeshift camp in the Larsos area, while another 300 were taken to the former PIKPA children’s camps.Those who fled the violence at the Moria hotspot, which is hosting numbers three times its capacity, have been told that they will lose their food and financial allowances as well as their appointments with the asylum service if they do not return to the hotspot.

In the light of these developments, civil society organisations have reiterated their call on the Greek government to proceed with the immediate transfer of a large number of migrants to the mainland. Around 160 people who fled the recent violence at the Moria hotspot have been transported by boat to Athens and housed in tents at the Malakasa camp. However, this number is highly insufficient. According to the government, further transfers are on hold due to a lack of accommodation on the mainland.

The Greens/EFA Group in the European Parliament has recently published a study focusing on the detrimental impact that the EU-Turkey Statement and the implementation of the “hotspot approach” in Greece is having on the rights of refugees and migrants arriving. The study finds that that the current procedures and practices for processing asylum applications on the Greek islands under the EU-Turkey statement violate the applicants’ right to asylum and due process.

Continue reading Seeking refuge from the hotspots: asylum seekers required to return to Moria despite concerns

Turkey suspends migrant readmission deal with Greece

Via Hurriyet Daily News – Turkey has suspended the migrant readmission deal with Greece in response to a Greek court’s decision to release eight former Turkish servicemen who fled to the country one day after Turkey’s July 2016 coup attempt, Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said on June 6.

Asked whether Ankara is considering sanctions against Greece following the release of the eight soldiers Çavuşoğlu described the move as “unacceptable.”

Continue reading Turkey suspends migrant readmission deal with Greece

Secret EU docs show conflict over cash for EU-Turkey refugee deal


Leak reveals EU nations are unhappy about paying bill to maintain multi-billion bargain with Turkey

Via The Black Sea – By Zeynep Şentek and Craig Shaw.

Major European Union countries expressed disquiet at having to pay for their six billion Euro deal with Turkey to keep Syrian refugees away from the EU

Despite a significant drop in Syrian refugees entering Europe from Turkey, member states did not want to finance the mega-deal from their national coffers, and instead asked to raid pre-accession funds or divert cash from the EU budget. Continue reading Secret EU docs show conflict over cash for EU-Turkey refugee deal

Raw Deal


What happened to the billions that Brussels pledged to Turkey to keep refugees out of the EU

Via The Black Sea – By Craig Shaw, Zeynep Şentek & Şebnem Arsu.

The ending of Europe’s refugee crisis was built on a legally dubious, three billion Euro deal between the EU and Turkey in 2016

With the recent announcement of a further three billion Euro pledged for Turkey, the existing deal is not as successful as the EU publicly states: NGOs have been harassed and fined, there is little public accountability on how money is spent, and many infrastructure projects are only just beginning

Meanwhile, despite requesting to extend the agreement, Turkey is already crafting a “counter narrative” to send refugees back to Syria.

A ‘Billions for Borders’ report for EIC Network, with additional reporting by John Hansen (Politiken), Emilie Ekeberg (Danwatch), Margherita Bettoni (The Black Sea), Hanneke Chin-A-Fo (NRC) Francesca Sironi (L’Espresso). Continue reading Raw Deal

No Way Out


The European Union is funding military equipment used by Turkey to stop refugees from fleeing the Syrian Civil War and entering the EU

Via The Black Sea -By Zeynep Sentek and Sebnem Arsu.

Under an agreement in March 2016, the EU pledged six billion Euro to Turkey to effectively trap millions of refugees within its country and stop them from entering the European Union.

This is not the only cash from the EU. It also pays Turkey for military equipment which is used at its borders with Syria and Greece to halt those wishing to seek asylum in the 28-member bloc.

An investigation into EU contracts by Politiken and Danwatch (Denmark) in partnership with the European Investigative Collaborations (EIC) reveals that EU has supplied Turkey with 83 million Euro in armoured military vehicles and surveillance equipment for what witnesses say is aggressive patrolling of the borders.

These deals also risk the EU being complicit in possible violations of the international rights of refugees. Continue reading No Way Out

update: merging posts on ‘Monitoring the EU-Turkey Deal’ with rest of the HarekAct content

In late summer 2017 we started the section on ‘Monitoring the EU-Turkey Deal’, extending our focus further to Europe by reporting on the EU-Turkey Deal and its consequences for migrants in Greece. Through a cooperation with activists on Lesvos we were able to report more and focus on the region.

The cooperation has been very good and the situation on the Aegean Islands has not improved in the last months, tensions on the islands are rather getting higher. Therefore we will continue reporting on the topic, though not under the special section of ‘Monitoring the EU-Turkey Deal’ but we will post these articles under our existing categories: news, in depth or reports and documents

Articles concerning these topics will be tagged with #EU-Turkey Deal or #Aegean Islands

Turkey has joined the ICMPD: What does this mean?

Now even closer: ICMPD and Turkey (photo by ICMPD)

The Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on 15 May that Turkey will join the International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD). This is yet another step towards embracing the political idea of “migration management”. At the same time, the decision means further expanding Turkey’s cooperation with EU member states with the aim to regulate and control migration into the EU – and into Turkey.

Continue reading Turkey has joined the ICMPD: What does this mean?

EU warns of new surge in asylum seekers from Turkey

Via Hurriyet Daily News (16th May 2018) – The EU warned on May 16 that asylum seeker arrivals from Turkey have surged this year and called on member countries to act urgently on pledges of support for the bloc’s border force.

The European Commission, the European Union’s executive arm, said 15,457 people had arrived via Turkey on Greece’s sea and land borders through March, nine times higher than the same period last year. Continue reading EU warns of new surge in asylum seekers from Turkey

Re-thinking EU-Turkey Deal: Asylum and Protection

Via Bosphorus Migration Studies (7th May 2018) – After the EU-Turkey readmission plan, the migrant flows in the Aegean Sea are decreased. However, raised concerns on human rights abuses leaded us to follow recent steps taken by the governments. Orçun Ulusoy and Jill Alpes, prominent scholars working on this topic answered Mehmet Enes Beşer‘s questions.

Why do you think there is limited access to people who have been readmitted from Greece to Turkey? Is it mostly due to lack of research on the part of international organisations or lack of data provided by both countries?

Continue reading Re-thinking EU-Turkey Deal: Asylum and Protection