1. 200 refugees attacked on Lesbos by as many right-wing extremists
The end of limbo seemed to be near for migrants left stranded on the Greek islands by the EU-Turkey deal (where their freedom of movement is severely restricted, as our own Marianna Karakoulaki wrote here) before the Greek government decided to overturn the decision of the Council of State*. Meanwhile, the so-called “Moria 35” are facing trial for protesting in 2017 outside the camp on Lesbos, and a group of 200 Afghan refugees, who were also peacefully protesting conditions at the camp, were attacked on Sunday April 22 by a group of about 200 right-wing extremists. Police attempted to separate the two groups, but tensions remained high for hours (and there were children among the migrants). Several eye witnesses took to social media and also posted several pictures. You can read an excellent report (in Italian) from human rights worker Walesa Porcellato in Vita.
2. Three volunteers facing trial in France for helping migrants cross the border
As we told you last week, Generation Identitaire’s attack at the Italian border was met in France by many acts of solidarity with refugees: Reporterre published a comprehensive account. Meanwhile, Rainbow4Africa reported that three volunteers (one Italian and 2 Swiss) will be tried on May 31 in France for helping migrants cross the border.
3. A graphic novel about the Mediterranean sea withdrawing its waters in shame
April 18 marked the anniversary of the shipwreck 2015, when at least 800 people drowned; Fulvio Vassallo Paleologo wrote about it and noted how rescue operations by NGOs were unknown at the time. A graphic novel titled “Mediterraneo” has just been published: the story of a sea withdrawing in shame to expose disgrace and hypocrisy.
4. Theresa May says Windrush victims will be paid compensation, and the Interior Minister resigns
The scandal continues in the UK over the treatment of the Windrush Generation, the Caribbean immigrants from Commonwealth country who helped rebuild the country after World War II and who are facing deportation in the post-Brexit nationalist fever. After the news broke out in the media, Conservative Interior Minister Amber Rudd apologised profusely, but that was not enough: many MPs demanded an explanation and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn called for her resignation. Pressures became stronger on Sunday afternoon, when the Guardian revealed Rudd’s plans to increase the number of deportations by more than 10% in a letter to Downing Street – contrary to what she had claimed so far. Rudd eventually resigned on Sunday evening. The new minister was appointed on Monday morning: Sajid Javid, former Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, became the first person of ethnic minority background to hold the UK Home Secretary position. The new Minister stated that his most urgent task “is to help those British citizens that came from the Caribbean, the so-called Windrush generation, and make sure that they are treated with the decency and the fairness that they deserve.”
Prime Minister Theresa May has promised to restore British citizenship for Windrush victims and pay compensation to those who suffered discrimination and abuse.
5. Sudan’s feared secret police is aiding Europe by stifling migration
The progressive externalisation of borders has created a new case in Africa: in Sudan, a country that is opening up to Western countries under new agreements with the EU, the feared secret police is stopping migrants on behalf of European countries. Read the report from Abu Jamal by Patrick Kingsley in the New York Times.
6. Libyans on the run
As had been speculated for some time, Libyans are beginning to flee poverty and violence in their own country. Francesca Mannocchi wrote in Al Araby about Libyans who are ending up in the hands of people smugglers.
Meanwhile, as reported in the New York Times, several former Guantánamo detainees might also be deported to Libya.
7. Journalists covering the refugee crisis face trauma and hypocrisy
We are hearing and learning more about the relationship between post-traumatic stress disorder and front-line reporting. Anthony Feinstein wrote here what causes psychological trauma to journalists covering the refugee crisis: it is not just witnessing people in distress, but also facing moral injury and hypocrisy at home.
8. Annotated excerpts from the Supreme Court arguments on Trump’s travel ban
This week, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments on President Trump’s third travel ban on entry to the USA (the so-called “Muslim Ban”), perhaps the most contentious case they’ll hear this term. Adam Lipvak explained here the questions that the Supreme Court contended with.
9. Egypt is not a safe country at all
It is a rare event, but sometimes an asylum decision reminds us that Egypt is not the safe country that Italy and the EU have described. This time, humanitarian protection was granted in Lecce to a young man fleeing conscription in the Egyptian army. The court recognised that the young man acted out of conscience over the violations of human rights in his country. Attorney Maria Grazia Stigliano wrote about it in Melting Pot, and the website also published the ruling in full.
10. No counsel at police headquarters for migrants in Milan
Several associations providing legal assistance to migrants, including ASGI, Naga e Avvocati per niente, are once against protesting the fact that for the past two years, migrants’ Milan haven’t been allowed to have their lawyers present when they are brought to police headquarters for verification.
* The first sentence of this review is different from the one that opens the text sent via our newsletter on Monday 30 April to reflect the changed situation after the decision of the Greek government.
Foto di copertina via Stefanie Eisenschenk