Connect with us

News

Greece evicts vulnerable refugees, leaves them on the streets – MSF

[tps_footer]

[/tps_footer]

  • An increasing number of MSF patients with severe health and mental health conditions in Greece are being threatened with eviction or have been evicted from their accommodation.
  • The Greek government has been granted EU funds for enlarging the mainland’s accommodation scheme, yet to find a quick solution for the congested camps on the islands, the eviction of more than 11,000 recognised refugees has begun.
  • MSF is calling on the Greek government to stop the evictions of all vulnerable people (pregnant women, victims of sexual abuse, victims of torture, elderly, families with children) and identify alternative solutions.
  • Sending vulnerable people to the street, especially during a pandemic, is inhumane and non-sustainable.

ATHENS –  An increasing number of refugees in Greece with severe health and mental health conditions are being threatened with eviction from their accommodation, cut off from cash assistance and left in the streets without access to shelter, protection or proper healthcare.

Looking for a quick solution to decongest the overcrowded camps on the Greek islands, the Greek government has begun to evict more than 11,000 beneficiaries of international protection from their supported accommodation in Greece, many of whom are extremely vulnerable.

READ  39 migrants die as boats sink off Tunisia's coast

Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is calling on the Greek government to suspend evictions of vulnerable people, including survivors of sexual violence, torture and ill treatment, the elderly, and people with chronic diseases; to identify immediate accommodation solutions and to enlarge the existing accommodation programmes.

VIDEO

Greece evictions

Greece: vulnerable refugees evicted and left to sleep on the streets
In the midst of a global pandemic, governments should be protecting people at high risk of COVID-19, not throwing them out onto the streets.

“We have patients with serious medical conditions who are being abandoned, while women in an advanced stage of pregnancy are sleeping on Victoria Square in central Athens,” says Marine Berthet, MSF medical coordinator in Greece.

“In the middle of a global pandemic, governments should be protecting and shielding people at high risk of COVID-19, not throwing them out onto the streets and leaving them without protection, shelter or access to basic healthcare.”

In June, an extremely vulnerable MSF patient died from a cardiac arrest shortly after she was threatened with eviction and subsequently left her accommodation.

“Our patient who died was paraplegic and had multiple serious medical conditions, including diabetes and cardiovascular disease, yet she had been threatened with eviction on multiple occasions,” says Berthet.

“Under the fear of losing her home, her family moved her to Schisto camp, where her son was staying in a container with 12 other people; two days later she suffered a cardiac arrest and died.”

READ  Norway to take 600 migrants evacuated to Rwanda from Libya

At least 30 other MSF patients with serious medical conditions have either been evicted or notified of eviction, and now face the prospect of being homeless and cut off from cash assistance.

We have patients with cancer, survivors of torture, single mothers with chronic diseases and heavily pregnant women who are essentially being told to sleep rough, without any support.

“The case of the woman who died is just the tip of the iceberg,” says Berthet. “We have patients with cancer, survivors of torture, single mothers with chronic diseases and heavily pregnant women who are essentially being told to sleep rough, without any support.”

Many MSF patients with serious chronic diseases have had their possessions removed from their accommodation and been told they must leave, without any indication of where they should go.

Dozens of other patients have been notified that they must leave, while their cash assistance has been stopped, despite their extreme vulnerability. Meanwhile, the city squares are filling up with vulnerable refugees, including children, pregnant women, newborn babies, people with severe chronic conditions and survivors of torture and sexual violence.

In June this year, Greece’s Ministry of Migration and Asylum pledged to cut spending on the housing programme for asylum seekers by up to 30 per cent. Meanwhile, in February, the Greek government was awarded EU funds to enlarge the accommodation scheme on the mainland. However, so far, no extra accommodation has been made available.

READ  Thousands of migrants forced to sleep rough after closure, destruction of Bosnia camp

In response to the hundreds of refugees sleeping on the streets of Victoria Square in Athens, we are referring those most in need of medical care to our daycare centre in Athens. However, the refugees’ most basic needs are not being covered.

We urgently call on the Greek government, the EU and all organisations involved in providing shelter to find immediate accommodation solutions for all those refugees currently sleeping on the streets of Athens, and to halt evictions of refugees until all administrative barriers to integration and access to healthcare have been lifted.

 

Support Voice for African Migrants


Support VOICE FOR AFRICAN MIGRANTS journalism of integrity and credibility.

Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.

For continued free access to the best and latest migration, trafficking, displacement and humanitarian reports including thorough investigative reports in these areas, we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.

By contributing to VOICE FOR AFRICAN MIGRANTS, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.
* are compulsory
cardlogos
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Solve : *
11 + 12 =


News

Dominican Republic, IOM clear hurdles for 100,000 Venezuelan migrants

The Migration Normalization Plan will allow Venezuelans living irregularly in the Dominican Republic to work, move without risk of deportation, open bank accounts and join the country’s social security system.  Photo: IOM / Francesco Spotorno

 

 

Santo Domingo – The first group of almost 100,000 Venezuelan migrants without legal status in the Dominican Republic have received visas allowing them to work, open bank accounts and join the social security system under the country’s Migration Normalization Plan.

Created by the Dominican government and launched with the support of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the plan aims to regularize the Venezuelan population in three stages: application for extension of stay, visa, and residency. Since April, when the first phase began, 43,000  Venezuelans have registered to extend their stay and, on 1 July, the first group of 21 Venezuelans received their work visa.

“Now that I have my visa, I feel that for others like me a lot of opportunities are opening. We will be able to establish more safely and formally to offer a better future to our children,” says Gabriela Rivero, who arrived in the country with her husband and daughter in 2018.  “Once we settled, we did not imagine how difficult it would be to get a job because the lack of documentation closed all doors.”

READ  Ethiopian migrants return home from Yemen with IOM support in wake of tragic boat sinking

Since 2019 Gabriela has led a support organization for Venezuelan migrants in Santiago de los Caballeros called FEV (Fundación Emigrantes de Venezuela), which offers free orientation and helps hundreds of migrants daily to complete their normalization plan applications.

With IOM support, eight Venezuelan migrant organizations have created orientation hubs to assist the Venezuelan population who are applying to the plan. Of the 43,000  registered through the General Directorate of Migration (DGM) web page, around 9,000 have visited the hubs for help on the procedure. The promoters and coordinators of each hub – mostly Venezuelan migrants – have learned the process with the support and guidance of the DGM team and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MIREX). Besides being trained for orientation, they became the pilot group of the plan to receive their extensions and visas.

“The idea of this process is that we are the ones at the front of the hubs, a migrant helping a migrant, a Venezuelan helping a Venezuelan,” says Iván Carrera, a lawyer from Caracas and legal adviser of FUNCOVERD (Fundación Colonia de Venezolanos en RD). Carrera works as a promoter at the orientation hub in El Sambil Santo Domingo, one of the locations with the most people requesting support for their application.

READ  About 12,000 Africans arrive Europe via Italian waters in less than four months of 2020

Support Voice for African Migrants


Support VOICE FOR AFRICAN MIGRANTS journalism of integrity and credibility.

Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.

For continued free access to the best and latest migration, trafficking, displacement and humanitarian reports including thorough investigative reports in these areas, we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.

By contributing to VOICE FOR AFRICAN MIGRANTS, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.
* are compulsory
cardlogos
Continue Reading

News

IOM launches open South America portal

International Organisation of Migration (

Buenos Aires – IOM, the International Organization for Migration, this week launched the Open South America Portal, a web platform providing migrants and stakeholders in the region with access to reliable and timely information on human mobility restrictions and health and safety measures adopted by governments in the COVID-19 pandemic.

Open South America, available in SpanishEnglish and Portuguese, shares official information by country on the latest measures, including border restrictions, quarantine requirements and COVID-19 tests for migrants and travellers.

The portal also provides updated information on authorized entry points and key places for travellers and migrants, such as consulates, migrant care and health centres, airports, border crossings points and ports. This information can be explored through an interactive map.

The platform, funded by the IOM Development Fund, is also accessible to vulnerable migrants who may be stranded or are at risk of receiving misinformation on migration.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, South America has been one of the most impacted regions worldwide. According to the World Health Organization figures, as of 8 July 2021 there were 33,475,765 COVID-19 cumulative cases in the region, which represents 89 per cent of the total cases in Latin America, and 18 per cent of all infections recorded globally.

READ  Nigerian migrants’ sojourn in Middle East ends in woes

Countries such as Brazil, Peru, Colombia and Ecuador all experienced severe outbreaks. For example, Brazil currently reports the third highest number of cumulative cases (18,855,015) and second highest death toll (526,892) globally.

“Open South America will facilitate orderly, regular and responsible migration in South America amid the uncertain times of COVID-19 and after the pandemic,” said Minister Ana Laura Cachaza, General Director of Consular Affairs of the Government of Argentina.

“Migrants’ access to up-to-date information through innovative online tools is essential considering the changing migration dynamic in the region due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Marcelo Pisani, IOM Regional Director for South America.

Support Voice for African Migrants


Support VOICE FOR AFRICAN MIGRANTS journalism of integrity and credibility.

Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.

For continued free access to the best and latest migration, trafficking, displacement and humanitarian reports including thorough investigative reports in these areas, we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.

By contributing to VOICE FOR AFRICAN MIGRANTS, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.
* are compulsory
cardlogos
Continue Reading

News

29,000 Nigerians, Ghanaians, Somalians, other Africans migrated through the Mediterranean Sea to Europe in 2021 —IOM

The International Organisation for Migration has said that 29,000 individuals including Nigerians, Ghanaians, Somalians and other Africans have emigrated to Europe through the Mediterranean Sea this year.

About 13,000 were arrested by the coast guards and returned home while 761 migrants were said to have perished in the sea.

Disclosing this to journalists in Abuja on Friday, the Chief of Mission, IOM Nigeria, Mr Franz Celestin, said less than five per cent of migrants usually made it to Europe, adding that the vast majority stay in Africa.

He further said that a lot of migrants were trafficked within the Economic Community of West African States, adding that Mali was the number one destination point for trafficked Nigerian women.

Responding to questions on the number of people who have undertaken the perilous trip to Europe through the Mediterranean, the IOM Chief said, “A combination of unemployment and underemployment is pushing people to migrate.

READ  About 12,000 Africans arrive Europe via Italian waters in less than four months of 2020

“In this year, 29,000 migrants from Sub-Sahara Africa have migrated to Europe through the Mediterranean. About 13,000 were intercepted by the coastguard while 761 died.”

International Organisation of Migration (

Celestin stressed the importance of tackling human trafficking which he said grossed about $150 billion annually.

“Traffickers make a lot of money and they would continue to do it until a coordinated response is evolved to stop them. We are collaborating with Interpol in this respect; we are connected to the Interpol i/247 database. We connected the MIDAS to the Interpol database where we pass the information on traffickers to the Interpol,” he stated.

Celestin explained that the IOM has been involved in the biometric registration of children in the North-East, noting that the agency has registered no fewer than 17,053 children in 18 different internally displaced person camps between 2019 and May 2021 in Borno State.

The agency chief also disclosed that IOM was involved in the G7 Famine Prevention and Humanitarian Compact for North-East.

READ  IOM donates bus to NAPTIP, reiterates commitment to supporting  government’s fight against human trafficking

 

Support Voice for African Migrants


Support VOICE FOR AFRICAN MIGRANTS journalism of integrity and credibility.

Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.

For continued free access to the best and latest migration, trafficking, displacement and humanitarian reports including thorough investigative reports in these areas, we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.

By contributing to VOICE FOR AFRICAN MIGRANTS, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.
* are compulsory
cardlogos
Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2019 Voice for African Migrants. Site Design: Semasir Connect