Thursday

2nd Feb 2023

EU Commission wants drones for Bulgaria on Turkey border

The European Commission wants to shore up the land border between Bulgaria and Turkey with drones. "We can strengthen the border with management capabilities," European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen told MEPs.

Latest News

  1. MEPs launch anonymous drop-box for shady lobbying secrets
  2. Hawkish ECB rate-rise 'puts energy transition at risk'
  3. MEPs push for greater powers for workers' councils
  4. How Pavel won big as new Czech president — and why it matters
  5. French official to take on Islamophobia in EU
  6. EU green industry plan could spark 'dangerous subsidy race'
  7. Wolves should be defended, EU ministers urge
  8. EU Commission wants drones for Bulgaria on Turkey border

Column

Six reasons why 'where are you really from?' is racist

Next time you think people should not be criticised for "just being curious" about someone's origin, ask yourself just why that harmless extra sub-question only ever surfaces around non-white Europeans.

Greece seeking possible jail for aid workers in flawed case

Some 24 are facing trial in Mytilene, on the island of Lesbos, on charges related to Emergency Response Center International (ERCI), a registered NGO that had in the past assisted the Greek Coast Guard in rescue operations.

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Opinion

EU couldn't handle a million refugees, how will it handle a billion?

The evidence shows the 'next Afghanistan' is not in the Middle East but in Africa, specifically West Africa, where religious violence, political corruption, weak states, and the devastating impacts of climate change have combined to create an unprecedented crisis.

Opinion

Italy's criminalisation of migrant rescue: the luventa case

Italy's new government has launched a fresh assault on non-governmental rescue groups that save lives. While the rhetoric is sharper and some tactics are new, successive Italian governments have tried to block maritime rescue groups — including with criminal charges.

Over 4,000 Frontex documents published by German NGO

Over 4,000 documents from the EU's border police agency Frontex, including freedom of information request responses, are now public. The files were uploaded and published by German-based transparency group FragDenStaat.

Illegal pushbacks happening daily in Croatia, says NGO

More than 1,600 testimonies of alleged illegal pushbacks of migrants and refugees throughout the EU has been published, collated by the Border Violence Monitoring Network and the Left party — adding to the mounting evidence of abuse.

Turkey's EU-funded detention centres ripe with abuse: NGO

Afghan and Syrian nationals are being abused at EU-funded removal centres in Turkey amid a lack of proper monitoring, says Human Rights Watch. The findings come at a time when Turkey is deporting large numbers of Afghans back to Kabul.

Sweden says 'no' to EU asylum relocation pledges

Sweden won't make any pledges to relocate asylum seekers under a French-inspired EU plan because there is no legal basis, says Sweden's ambassador to the EU. But Sweden's new right-wing government is also tightening migration rules.

EU leadership rehash old ideas to save migrant lives at sea

EU leadership on Wednesday (23 November) rehashed decade-old statements on the importance of saving lives in the Mediterranean Sea. But the statements appear increasingly hollow after over 25,000 deaths since 2014.

EU Commission suggests need for new charity rescue boat rules

EU Commission says it has no proposal and is not the competent authority, but that talks with the International Maritime Organisation are needed to create "specific framework and guidelines" for NGO boats rescuing people and bringing them to European shores.

Opinion

EU should help, not worsen, the refugee crisis in Libya

As MEPs debate the situation in Libya in the plenary for the first time in four years, the International Rescue Committee's Libya director says the EU must act now to prevent the country spiralling further into chaos.

Spain accused of Melilla migrant death cover up

Spanish authorities are being accused of a cover up over the deaths of dozens of refugees at its Melilla enclave with Morocco. Some 23 were confirmed dead and another 77 remain missing after around 1,500 tried to enter the enclave.

Hurdles remain for Schengen hopefuls Bulgaria and Romania

The European Commission is mounting pressure for Bulgaria, Romania and Croatia to join passport free Schengen area. On Wednesday (16 November), it presented a 13-page document explaining why they should become part of the zone next January.

Ocean Viking mentally preps for another Italian standoff

The Ocean Viking operated by SOS Mediterranee is mentally preparing for a new lengthy standoff with Italy's right wing government. Louise Guillaumat, its deputy director of operations, told EUobserver that the ship will soon be heading out to sea.

EU calls for 'firm' Belarus border control by Poland

A dead body in a freezing river, spinal injuries after falling off a wall, a pregnant woman given a punishment beating after being forced back — this is what's happening on the EU's eastern border.

Paris-Rome spat exposes EU 'solidarity' rift on asylum

The European Commission says solidarity on migration remains — despite Paris refusing to relocate some 3,500 asylum seekers from Italy under a French EU presidency-inspired proposal to distribute thousands of people across member states.

Europol given 'blank cheque' to do what it wants, say critics

Rule of law questions are mounting against the EU's police agency Europol, following a recent expansion of powers amid data abuse scandals. Those powers include the processing and analysis of data of innocent people with no links to any crime.

Opinion

New deregulation will see EU states cherry-picking asylum law

Through a mechanism to be discussed on Wednesday, member states would permanently be able to derogate at will from their obligations under EU asylum law — de fact creating a cherry-picking system between EU member states.

EU Commission cannot stop Italy banning rescue boats

The European Commission says it is powerless to stop Italy from banning charity rescue boats entering its territorial waters. The statement follows moves by the new government under Georgia Meloni to further crack down on the Mediterranean Sea rescues.

Czech EU presidency proposes annual asylum relocation figure

The Czech EU presidency is proposing an annual minimum on the number of asylum seekers EU states are willing to relocate. The idea is part of bigger discussion on solidarity sharing, a concept that has long eluded member states.

Turkey beating Syrian refugees back to Syria, says rights NGO

Turkey has beaten and forced hundreds of recognised Syrian refugees back into Syria, according to a new report by Human Rights Watch. "We wrote hundreds but I imagine it's maybe the tip of the iceberg," said one of its researchers.

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