Via BBC News Turkey – “The Greek islands feel abandoned by the mainland – and Greece feels abandoned by the EU”. Arrivals of migrants to Greece are growing again – but with doors elsewhere in Europe shut, most are now trapped in Greece or deported back to Turkey.
Via Mosaik Support Center – After 24 days on hunger strike and three months in prison, Amir Hampay has been released from detention by court order and reunited with his brother, Arash. #KhozinHussein and #BahroozArash remain imprisoned, and in deteriorating condition. Arash Hampay and Solidarity Activists Lesvos will continue their hunger strike in solidarity with their call for justice, freedom and dignity. Continue reading Amir Hampay Freed After 24 Days of Hunger Strike
Middle East Eye on Istanbuls Syrian LGBT community:
“Every Sunday, Syrian LGBT refugees from all corners of the city meet up for weekly “Tea and Talk” meetings. Several issues are discussed, including the difficulties involved with obtaining residency permits and applying for asylum, as well as more mundane matters such as entry prices into Istanbul’s various gay clubs. […] Continue reading Facing own dangers, Turkey’s LGBT community defends Syrian counterparts
There have been many reports of incidents on the Syrian-Turkish border since as early as 2014, according to Amnesty International
Via Middle East Eye – Two Syrian civilians attempting to cross the Turkish borders have been shot dead by Turkish border police, local activists have reported. The two men were identified as Hassan Mustafa and Abduljabar Aldali from a town called Kifr Kar in the northern suburbs of Aleppo. Continue reading Two Syrian civilians shot dead by Turkish border police, say activists
Via Komnews – The EU-Turkey refugee deal, which aims to reduce the number of asylum seekers coming to Greece, has provoked a mental health crisis among thousands of migrants who have been trapped on Greek islands since March 2016, a human rights watchdog revealed on Wednesday. Continue reading EU-Turkey migrant deal impacts mental health of refugees on Greek islands – Watchdog
Author: Valeria Hänsel
For 14 days, refugee activist Arash Hampay has refused food. On the Greek island of Lesvos, he sits on the central square of the town Mytilini surrounded by shops, cafés and tourists, presenting a sign stating “Refugees are not Criminals”.
He is exhausted but determined to continue his hunger strike until the end. His open statement leaves no doubt:
“We shall continue our hunger strike until the prisoners in Moria camp are released, regardless of the consequences for us. A life without freedom is worthless and meaningless for us. You must release the refugees or we shall end our lives in front of your eyes and the people’s eyes. We are waiting for you. The people are waiting for you. You must free us or else be responsible for our death. We will keep waiting until the last drop of life falls from our bodies.”
Via Hurriyet DailyNews – At a time when the number of racist attacks targeting Syrian refugees in Turkey is on the rise, the United Metalworkers’ Union (Birleşik Metal İş Sendikası) issued a report called “Syrian Refugee Labor.” We have thus seen once again how most of the three million Syrian refugees are living under difficult conditions here.
Eight academics from various universities drafted the report. Face to face interviews were conducted with both Turkish and Syrian workers in the textile sector. The result is striking but not unexpected, because we knew that Syrian workers were unregistered and highly underpaid.
The report said 99.6 percent of male Syrian workers and 100 percent of female Syrian workers were unregistered. As an example of the pay gap between Syrian and Turkish workers, the average pay of Syrian women workers corresponds to only half of the average Turkish male worker’s pay. Continue reading →
The Independent spoke to Arash Hampay about his hunger strike in Lesvos:
I am used to having my human rights trampled on. I have been tortured by police in jails from Tehran to Istanbul. But the treatment like we are experiencing here at the hands of the European Union has left me shocked. In fact, as hunger strikers, we could access medical care in Iran that has been denied to us by the Greek authorities. Continue reading “I came to Greece to escape imprisonment in Iran – but now I realise that Europe is worse”
Via Ekathimerini – Migrants at the overcrowded Moria reception center on Lesvos clashed on Monday afternoon with after a protest against conditions at the center escalated with two large tents being burned during the upheaval. Continue reading Migrants at Lesvos camp burn tents, clash with police