UPDATE February 2019
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Advocating against illegal pushbacks in Brussels
Illegal pushbacks along Greek and other European borders are a continuous human right violation which unfortunately doesn’t receive the attention it really needs. Asylum seekers trying to seek protection in Europe are systematically denied entry to the country and are stripped away of their right to apply for asylum. While being illegally pushed back, their property is often destroyed and they are subject to undignified and violent treatment from border police or military.
Mobile Info Team met with Border Violence Monitoring and Centre for Peace Studies and No Name Kitchen in Brussels to speak to Members of European Parliament and NGOs to raise awareness about this ongoing issue. Overall, MIT Co-coordinator Gabrielle Clarke was able to speak with 6 MEPs from Greece, Spain, the UK and Italy in addition to engaging with Amnesty International. To complete this successful trip, Gabrielle also met with the Flemish Refugee Council and with members of the asylum unit of the European Commission, to inform about the current situation for asylum seekers and refugees in Greece and to discuss various issues we observe in the field.
Continuously enhancing our knowledge
The asylum and family reunification procedures are complex and constantly changing. Because of this, it is incredibly important for us to always be up to date with new developments and changes in the system, so that we can best help the people we support. Daily, MIT caseworkers monitor various sources to research new court decisions, Greek and European legislative changes and practices in the field of asylum law. MIT caseworkers also regularly attend workshops and training sessions to enhance and further build up our knowledge.
MIT caseworkers Paul and Michael attended an advanced workshop about family reunification in February. The workshop explained complex issues and included discussion of the possibilities for strategic litigation in different countries. We are very sure that some of the inspiration we got from the workshop will help us to support our family reunification even better in the future. Thank you Safe Passage and Equal Rights Beyond Borders for your amazing work!
Conference on migration in Seville
In February, MIT team member Michael was invited to a conference of NGOs, grassroot organizations and activists in the field of migration. Groups and individuals from Spain, Italy, Croatia and Greece met in Seville to exchange best practices and learn from each other. It was also a great opportunity to strengthen our network with different organizations all over Europe.
As part of the conference Michael and the other participants arranged a street action to raise awareness about the ongoing human rights violations towards migrants at the European southern borders. A manifesto addressed to Members of European Parliament will be published in a few weeks, demanding a more humane and less hostile approach when receiving third country nationals. We will keep you updated about further steps and publish the text of the manifesto also on our website.