Born in Turkey: Syrian children face uncertain future in new homeland

Migrant kids born in Turkey is a crucial and growing topic. 385,431 babies born to Syrian parents in Turkey between April 2011 and November 2018, according to official statistics. As mentioned in the report below many problems and risks emerge in this area: such as the the discriminative treatment migrant mothers face that may turn violent and traumatic during the labour, not having access to public hospitals (being refused, or being charged high prices) and therefore having to give birth in improper conditions, having difficulties to register the kids, and to receive health-care, education and other social services later on.

Via MEE, Ayse Karabat

Almost half of the 3.5 million Syrians in Turkey are children, according to UNICEF (AFP)

ISTANBUL, Turkey – Sham’s start in life was not easy.

“I was in labour. I was in pain, lying in the hospital bed, but the midwives did not help me,” recalls her mother Kawthar Muhammet, a Syrian now living in Turkey who uses the Turkish spelling of her last name, Mohammed. “They said to me, ‘You’re fleeing war and having sex?’ They called me names that I don’t want to repeat. They abandoned me.

“I begged the cleaning lady to help me. She went to find a doctor. When they returned, the baby had already been born.” Continue reading Born in Turkey: Syrian children face uncertain future in new homeland

Thousands of Syrian refugees return back to Syria from Turkey

Even though Lebanon recently announced a slowdown in the number of Syrians returning from Lebanon, as several returning Syrians had recently been killed, the Turkish state run Anadolu agency reports about thousands of Syrians crossing the border back to Syria.

Thousands of Syrian refugees return home from Turkey



Via Ahval Thousands of Syrians have left Turkey over the past fortnight to return to their hometowns liberated from militants in northwestern Syria, Hürriyet Daily News reported.

Some 4,000 Syrians who had taken refuge in different parts of Turkey flocked to the Cilvegözü border gate in Hatay province to cross back into their homeland, according to the initial report from state-run Anadolu Agency.
Continue reading Thousands of Syrian refugees return back to Syria from Turkey

HarekAct @ Hamisden Sesler, Açık Radyo

On 26th of November, HarekAct was invited to Istanbul’s Açık Radyo (Open Radio) program called Hamişden Sesler (Voices from Hamisch), a unique and outstanding radio program wich aims to spread “voices from exile on Syria and Syrians”.

Our member Pelin had the chance to explain how our blog was established, what are the topics that we have been covering, and our intentions to archive, monitor and incorporate more contributions to the blog in order to build a collection of critical and analytical literature on the issue of migration and border regime in and around Turkey.

The interview moved forward from explaining our name HarekAct, as a conjugation of “movement” and “action” that hints at the very basic element of freedom of movement and the related struggles as opposed to the regime that represents migration as a ‘crisis’; to informing on other bordermonitoring projects and groups within the bordermonitoring platform.

Furthermore Pelin elaborated on the role of editors, as well as her own motives of being a part of the board. Therefore she summarized the main function of the blog as “a space despite borders where people who want to raise their voices and discuss their struggles can find a place for themselves, particularly at these times when many are displaced and left without place”. Finally, she briefed on the latest issues covered by the Harekact posts and invited the audience to follow and join to us.

The full program can be listened through the Açık Radyo podcast in Turkish.


“We are afraid”

Via taz gazete An article reporting about the situation of Syrians in Izmir and growing racist tensions and attacks. Available in Turkish and German.

Foto: Sevda Aydın. Suriye’deki iç savaşın hemen başlarında en çok göç alan bölgelerden biri Basmane’ydi.

„Ceplerinde dolarlar var ama bedava çorba içiyorlar“

Büyük İskender, gördüğü bir rüyanın ardından insanların eskisinden dört kat mutlu yaşayacağını düşünerek Kadifekale’ye bir kent kurmaya karar verir. Kadifekale’de şimdilerde eskisinden dört kat daha mutsuz mülteciler yaşıyor.

„Wir haben Angst“

In İzmir leben 140.000 Syrer*innen. Viele Einheimische sehen sie als Gäste, die irgendwann wieder zurückkehren sollen – manche greifen die Geflüchteten an.

Continue reading “We are afraid”

Turkey closes down 6 out of 19 refugee camps due to austerity measures

Via Turkish Minute – Turkey has closed down six camps for Syrian refugees due to austerity measures the government has taken amidst economic problems, the Cumhuriyet daily reported on Thursday.

The move affected some 132,990 Syrian refugees.

According to the Interior Ministry, 76 percent of the refugees rented apartments with the help of allowances provided by the government. The remainder has been transferred to other camps.

Continue reading Turkey closes down 6 out of 19 refugee camps due to austerity measures

#WhereIsDerya? The Irani Women Protesting in front of UNHCR is Missing

We have previously posted about Derya, the Irani asylum-seeker who was protesting for more than a month in front of UNHCR on the claim that she has no life security in Turkey because of the life threats she has been receiving from her brother. Reports arrived a couple of days ago that non she has been missing.

A woman supporter who went to visit Derya in front of the UNHCR building could not find her and asked to the security guard, the guard responded that ‘someone took her’. The lawyers who support Derya could not find any information through UNHCR, DGMM or police stations. We are looking forward to find out where Derya is, we are urging the authorities to take an action to find her, particularly on this significant day, 25th of November, the international day for the elimination of the violence against woman.

See our post on social media for that matter.


Iraq brings back hundreds of Mosul refugees from Turkey

Via Kurdistan 24

Iraqi displaced people in one of the camps in the Kurdistan Region. (Photo: Kurdistan 24/Alexandre Afonso)

ERBIL – Iraq’s Ministry of Displacement and Migration on Thursday stated that they had brought back hundreds of Iraqi nationals who had fled to neighboring Turkey over the past few years as refugees because of Islamic State (IS) threats.

Following the emergence of IS in 2014 and its violent spread over the province of Nineveh, hundreds of thousands of people fled to the Kurdistan Region, Syria, and Turkey. The number considerably increased in the years after as the fight against the jihadist group intensified.

Since the defeat of IS last year, the Iraqi federal government has been working on helping refugees outside of Iraq voluntarily return to liberated areas.

The Director-General of the Ministry of Displacement and Migration, Star Nawrouz, said in a statement that his ministry, in cooperation with the Ministry of Transport and the Center for the management of joint crises, had returned 327 Iraqi refugees to the Kurdistan Region from Turkey through the international border crossing of Ibrahim Khalil.

Almost all the refugees are from inside and surrounding areas of Mosul. Iraqi authorities would soon provide buses to transport them to their homes in the eastern and western suburbs of Iraq’s second largest city, the statement added.

The return of Iraqis to their homes from neighboring countries is part of the “free voluntary return” program, Nawrouz explained.

He noted his ministry, working with the UNHCR, provided food and drinking water to those making their way back to Iraq.

In August, Iraq brought back more than 100 of its citizens who were in Turkey, whether fleeing the violence or who had been seeking refuge for some time.

Over the past few years, the Kurdistan Region has been home for some two million Iraqi displaced people and Syrian refugees.

The Kurdish semi-autonomous region continues to host 1.4 million displaced individuals as many of them refuse to return to their liberated areas due to a lack of security and basic services.

This article was originally published by Kurdistan 24

Migration, activist research, and the politics of location: An interview with Nicholas De Genova

Via Focaal Blog – Cemile Gizem Dinçer and Eda Sevinin interviewed Nicholas De Genova in Istanbul when they attended the conference “Migration, Social Transformation and Differential Inclusion in Turkey”.

“In Turkey, especially after the Syrians’ arrival following 2011, the field of migration studies has more or less confined itself to mainstream discussions such as integration, social cohesion, data collection, and so on. At this point, the work of Nicholas De Genova and the wider literature on the autonomy of migration open up a new horizon for discussing migration. De Genova has had a decisive influence in shaping our approach to migration and borders. We hope that this interview will be read across Turkey and make his work accessible to students, activists, and everyone interested in migration. We had a long conversation on topics ranging from the recent “refugee crisis” and alternative ways to think about migration and politics, activism, and academia in general.”

“The first part of this interview traces De Genova’s intellectual trajectory, his work on migration in the US and European contexts, his methodological approach, and his intellectual collaborations with the school of autonomy of migration. The second part moves into an analysis of the so-called refugee crisis since 2015 and possibilities for militant academic research that challenges the increasingly hard-right consensus in Europe and beyond.”

In the following we will publish parts of the interview

Continue reading Migration, activist research, and the politics of location: An interview with Nicholas De Genova

New evidence of police violence and illegal deportation of asylum seekers in Evros

The Greek group ‘Racist Crime Watch‘ published new evidence of police violence and illegal push-backs of asylum seekers from Greece to Turkey via the Evros river. In a letter to the Commissional for Human Rights of the Council of Europe, Dunja Mijatović, they address these mistreatments:

Another video evidence of police violence and illegal deportation of asylum seekers in Evros

Dear Commissioner,

Further to our 9 and 29 September 2018 letters, we are sending another update with information published in Hurriyet Daily News and reprinted (without editing) here.

Via Hurriyet Daily News (13th November) – Turkish villagers warmly welcome migrants after Greek police beat them naked

Turkish villagers warmly welcome migrants after Greek police beat them naked

Residents of the Kiremitçi Salih village in the northwestern Turkish province of Edirne warmly welcomed a group of migrants they found naked and exhausted in their fields late Nov. 11.

Continue reading New evidence of police violence and illegal deportation of asylum seekers in Evros

“HRW: Rescuers at Sea Face Baseless Accusations”

Sara Mardini, Sean Binder and Nassos Karakitsos have been imprisoned since almost three month now. In the beginning of this month, Human Rights Watch published an article telling their story and researched on the accusation made against Sara and Sean based on a 86-pages police report and other court documents.

“Accusations of money laundering, people smuggling, and espionage appear no more than an effort to criminalize humanitarian activism on behalf of refugees and migrants in Greece. These charges should be dropped, and the activists should be freed.”, says Bill Van Esveld, senior children’s rights researcher at Human Rights Watch.

Greece Refugee Activist
Sean Binder, a search-and-rescue volunteer who helped migrants and asylum seekers at sea, has been detained in Greece on unfounded charges. © Private, 2018

In the following, we will publish the full report by HRW

Via Human Rights Watch – The criminal accusations brought by Greek prosecutors against activists for their efforts to rescue migrants and asylum seekers at sea appear entirely unfounded, Human Rights Watch said today. Human Rights Watch analyzed court records and other documents in the cases of two of the four activists currently in pretrial detention.

Continue reading “HRW: Rescuers at Sea Face Baseless Accusations”

Reporting on the Turkish-EU Border Regime