"Image shows a map sent via Whatsapp by refugee interviewed in Paris"

Mapping Refugee Media Journeys

Research led by Marie Gillespie, Professor of Sociology, The Open University
10 October, 2017

A fascinating research on refugee geographical trajectories, using new technologies.

“The “Mapping Refugee Media Journeys” project investigates the parallel tracks of the physical and digital journeys of Syrian and Iraqi refugees. It documents the media and informational resources that refugees use from the point of departure, during their journeys across different borders and states, and upon arrival (if they reach their desired destination). By identifying the news and information resources used by refugees, and where they experience gaps or misinformation, we intend to make recommendations to European Commission, to European Member states and their state funded international news organisations about what resources might they might provide not only to help refugees make better-informed decisions but to offer protection as required to fulfil their obligations under the UN Refugee Convention 1951.”

To access the research, please click here

  African migrants try to reach a rescue boat from the Spanish NGO Proactiva Open Arms, after falling from the punctured rubber boat in the Mediterranean Sea, about 12 miles north of Sabratha, Libya on Sunday, July 23, 2017. (AP Photo/Santi Palacios)

The Central Mediterranean: European Priorities, Libyan Realities

Article in Refugees Deeply
4 October, 2017

This online periodical is really worth following and this issue on the Central Mediterranean migration corridor is very well documented.

“The central Mediterranean is now the busiest corridor for irregular migration into the European Union. In recent years all efforts to combat flows have resulted in more sea crossings and more deaths at sea.

Suddenly this July and August the number of refugees and migrants crossing fell by two-thirds. The story of how this came about played out on three fronts:

  • at sea, where there was a concerted attempt to discredit a flotilla of charity boats that were saving lives
  • at the European Union, where foreign policy was transformed to pursue the single goal of reducing inward migration
  • and on the northern coast of Libya, where Italy made deals with known smugglers and municipalities to trap migrants.

This investigation, supported by the Ford Foundation and Journalismfund.eu, spans Brussels, Malta, Rome, Tunis and Libya itself and seeks to deliver the definitive account of European actions, their impact on Libya and the migrants stranded there.

To access the periodical, please click here


  EU Immigration Law Blog

The Italy-Libya Memorandum of Understanding: The baseline of a policy approach aimed at closing all doors to Europe?

EU Immigration Law Blog
2 October, 2017

A clear-eyed analysis of the “out of sight at any cost” policy line that European leaders are trying to put in place in order to prevent undesired migration movements towards them. Avoiding political and legal responsibility for such migrants is the only objective. The humanitarian veneer is very thin.  There is absolutely no generational vision as to how human mobility should be governed, considering that the prosperity and stability differentials on the planet will continue to foster push and pull factors for migration. Questions remain. For one, how much money are Global North countries prepared to unproductively invest in securitizing their borders and others countries’ borders? And how much violence against migrants are Global North countries prepared to subsidise through such investments in the security apparatus of non-democratic or barely democratic countries?

“Cooperation with Libya on migration and border control is not a new policy choice for Italy: during the 2000s numerous agreements focused on curbing migratory flows and enhancing readmission were concluded with the then Gaddafi regime. This partnership was nevertheless suspended in 2012 as a result of both the collapse of the Libyan government due to the outbreak of the civil war and the ECtHR judgment Hirsi Jamaa, which condemned Italy for violating the principle of non-refoulement and the prohibition of collective expulsions.”

To access the full article, please click here

  "Majida" and her brother "Ziyat" from Iraq live in the camp of Vial on Chios island since May 2017. They do not go to school, but study English and Greek in courses offered by a nongovernmental group. Photo Credit: Simon Rau for Human Rights Watch 2017

Greece: No School for Many Asylum-Seeking Kids

Human Rights Watch
28 September, 2017

Repressive European policies, such as the creation of hotspots, are breeding long-lasting human rights violations and preventing the implementation of forward-looking integration policies which would benefit the migrants, the host country, and Europe as a whole over the long term.

“Greece will extend a program that provides special Greek classes and integration support for non-native speaking pupils to asylum-seeking children on the islands. But this program excludes children in the so-called refugee hotspots and other reception facilities who cannot obtain the proof of address required to enroll in school. To reach children in these facilities, the Education Ministry recently announced it would open afternoon classes at public schools on the islands.

“Greece’s Education Ministry has crucial work ahead as it attempts to improve the country’s dismal record of denying access to school to children seeking asylum on the islands,” said Simon Rau, Mercator fellow at Human Rights Watch. “Children who have fled hellish conditions in search of safety in Europe need the support and hope a classroom provides and cannot wait until much of the school year has passed.”

Under Greek law, all asylum-seeking children in the country have the right to enroll in public schools. However, during the 2016-2017 school year, only 40 asylum-seeking children on the island of Lesbos could enroll in school, while about 530 asylum-seeking children of school age – ages 6 to 17 – were on the island as of August 29, according to United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) officials on the island.”

To access the article, please click here

  A Royal Canadian Mounted Police officer, left, standing in Saint-Bernard-de-Lacolle, Quebec, advises migrants that they are about to illegally cross from Champlain, N.Y., and will be arrested, Monday, Aug. 7, 2017. Officials on both sides of the border first began to notice last fall, around the time of the U.S. presidential election, that more people were crossing at Roxham Road. Since then the numbers have continued to climb. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

Pourquoi une chronique sur l’immigration?

Article in Metro
28 September, 2017

Professeur honoraire de démographie à l’Université de Montréal et chercheur associé à la Chaire Oppenheimer en droit international public de l’Université McGill, Victor Piché propose ici de déboulonner les mythes reliés à l’immigration.

“J’ai constaté que trop souvent les idées et les perceptions sur l’immigration sont loin de la réalité. Les médias sociaux véhiculent de nombreux mythes malgré l’existence de recherches scientifiques qui disent le contraire. Plusieurs facteurs viennent à l’esprit pour expliquer l’écart entre la recherche et l’opinion publique: publications dans des revues peu accessibles, méconnaissance, désinformation, littératie défaillante…

Ce qui en décourage plus d’un, c’est le constat que, même confrontées aux faits réels, les opinions ne changent pas. Certes, il existe une frange de la population qui demeurera toujours imperméable aux faits…

L’objectif de la chronique est donc de tracer un portrait de l’immigration qui permettrait de sortir de la problématique de la menace. Car c’est la peur qui nourrit les idées et les opinions négatives sur l’immigration, une peur trop souvent récupérée et entretenue par certains politiciens et par les groupes anti-immigration d’extrême droite.”

To access the article, please click here