Tag Archives: MSF

Borrell: Afghan people deserve peace

“There are few words that can do justice to the horrors we have witnessed today in Afghanistan. At the same moment an attack was targeting a maternity ward in Kabul, a terrorist detonated his bomb in the middle of a funeral in Nangarhar. Dozens of innocent civilians were killed or injured in these most reprehensible acts of terror” reads the statement by the EU top diplomat Josep Borrell on two attacks targeting civilians in Kabul and Nangarhar.

“To target and kill mothers, newly born babies and nurses, as well as bereaved and mourning families, are acts of evil and show an appalling degree of inhumanity. The attack on the Dasht-e-Barchi hospital maternity ward, run by Médecins Sans Frontières, also seems to have targeted international aid workers. The European Union stands in solidarity with them. These acts constitute clear violations of International Humanitarian Law, for which the perpetrators will have to bear the consequences. Our hearts go out to those who lost loved ones and we wish those who were injured a quick recovery.

“The Afghan people deserve peace. For too long has their country been ripped apart by terrorism and violence that no political objective can ever justify. A permanent ceasefire is absolutely vital, and the European Union calls on all stakeholders in Afghanistan and the region to make it a reality.”

EU laudits Spain for reception of migrant vessel

The EU Commissioner on Migration Dimitris Avramopoulos welcomed the decision of Spanish government to accept the vessel #Aquarius with 629 migrants on board transported from Libyan coasts to Italy.  The Italian and Maltese governments repelled #Aquarius, belonging to NGO, which is notorious for exercising the transportation of illegal African migrants to Europe, abusing maritime law of saving lives in seas, and is often dabbed as ‘migrant taxi service‘. Both EU member states – Italy and Malta – have been overwhelmed with migrants flows after the destruction of Libyan state, and have exhausted their capacity of offering shelter. The Spanish Socialist government, profiling itself as Eurocentric, came to rescue of the EU reputation in a gesture of solidarity to relieve the burden from Italy and Malta.

Meanwhile the new Interior Minister Matteo Salvini declared his victory over the EU, imposing respect of the international obligations towards the refugees, but unable to resolve the issue of illegal migrants flooding Italy. The Dublin system application hits hard the Mediterranean members of the bloc, namely Italy,  in vain calling for the EU solidarity in relocation of migrants.

“I am not a racist, I am not a fascist…but Italy cannot take it anymore. This is a new beginning – Salvini said at his press-conference, commenting on an international raw after the  repelling of #Aquarius from Italian coasts. Maltese Prime minister Joseph Muscat thanked Madrid for resolving the problem, however he underlined that a discussion is needed to avoid the repetition of the similar situations in the future.

During the stand off between Italy and Malta both rejecting #Aquarius,  there were reports from MSF about the migrants on the board becoming ‘anxious’ about the impossibility to reach Italian coasts. A man blackmailed the crew to drown himself in the sea, if the vessel returns to Libya. Sadly, many of the illegal migrants  arriving to Europe refer to the phenomenon as ‘migrant business‘, while experts confirm that nowadays in Africa ‘you are never further than two conversations away from a trafficker, ready to bring you to European coasts’.

Africa migrant map


Mediterranean migrant route arrivals at rise

With favorable weather migrants from North African coast continue to arrive to Europe. On Sunday (27/05/2018) 500 passengers of three boats were rescued to be transported in safety to Spain. The Spanish report was preceded by the one from Italy where over the same weekend 1500 migrants were rescued.

The Italian vessels operated by EU border control mission, and NGOs rescued around 1500 migrants in a couple of days during the same week. The reports show the Mediterranean route is actively exploited by traffickers to deliver migrants to European coasts, efficiently using summer period for maximum profit.

The reports from NGOs on migrants rescue in Mediterranean are in stark contrast with the official narrative of the diminishing of the numbers of arrivals. As a reaction on uninterrupted flows of migrants from African coasts, and incapacity of the EU to exercise solidarity in relocation of some of them across Europe, Italian Lega Nord party prepares plans to repatriate around 500 000 migrants, who did not receive a refugee status, or were initially eligible to apply for it.

The refusal of the Italian President Sergio Mattarella to endorse newly formed eurosceptic government the very same weekend, causing the profound political crisis in Italy, will reflect on the situation with illegal migration, protracting the systemic calamity of Italian society, unable to cope with overwhelming multitudes of new arrivals from African coasts.


‘Aquarius’ continues to rescue migrants in Libyan waters

According to the information released by #Aquarius vessel crew they rescued 73 men, women and children from a rubber boat in international waters off of #Libya. Everyone is safely onboard, the vessel continues partoling. Image: illustration.

AFP news agency published a picture of happy migrants, making selfies on the boat, presumably on their way to Italy, where they will seek for asylum. #Aquarius is a is a robust and seaworthy ship that offers wide spaces below deck, making it very suitable for year-round use as a rescue ship in the Mediterranean. The vessel is managed by NGO SOS MEDITERRANEE  – a European association with teams in Germany, France, Italy and Switzerland supported by a European network, jointly financing and operating the rescue ship #Aquarius, which has been in continuous operation since February 2016 in international waters between Italy and Libya. The medical aid is provided by #MSFDoctors without Borders.

Image: illustration

Hundreds of migrants rescued in Libya waters

Aquarius, the vessel of Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), saved 421 migrants, mostly from Eritrea. There is no further information in what European port they will bring the migrants.

Meanwhile the Libyan coastguard has been also conducting sea rescue operations.

More than 200 were rescued on Saturday after their boats foundered off Libya’s western coast, the Libyan navy said.

The coastguard conducted two rescue operations off the city of Garabulli, 60 kilometres (40 miles) east of Tripoli, spokesman Colonel Abu Ajila Abdelbarri said.

He added that patrols had found 31 bodies and 60 survivors from one boat, while all 140 passengers had survived in a second boat.

Migrants from Somalia, Ghana, Ethiopia, Nigeria and four from Pakistan were among those rescued.

Libyan patrol boat commander Nasser al-Ghammoudi said one of the vessels was three-quarters under water when the coastguard arrived.

France: ‘Exemplary’ migrant camp in ashes

A brawl between Afghans and Kurds is at the origin of the fire, said the prefect who came from Lille (Frnace)  to assess the  situation after the huge blaze at night reduced to a “cluster of ashes” the migrant camp run by NGO Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF). It was a shelter to 1,500 people, and has been a scene of serious incidents already in recent months.
The migrant camp at Grande-Synthe, near Dunkerque, in the north of France, which was intended as an ‘exemplary’ shelter for migrants dreaming of enter the UK, seized its existence over night.

The huge  blaze devastated most of its 300 sheds on Monday night, the authorities said, while some of inhabitants were evacuated to the building of local school and the others in the fields. Close to midnight, the camp of La Linière, offered by the ecologist Mayor of the municipality Damien Carême to end with the neighboring ‘jungle’  camp of Basroch was reduced to a  ashes. “It will be impossible to put back sheds and tents in place of those that existed before,”  declared to  press the prefect of the North, hastened to the crime scene from Lille.

Opened in March 2016 by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and the city, the camp hosted 1,500 migrants, mostly Iraqi Kurds, sheltering them in wooden sheds, but not in tents as previously. The camp, which is believed to be run by Iraqi Kurdish smugglers, has been the scene of several serious incidents in recent months, requiring the  police action.

A brawl between Afghans and Kurds, producing six wounded in the late afternoon, degraded, and led to setting the camp on fire,  said the prefect of the North Michel Lalande. “There must have been voluntary setting ablaze in several different places, it is not possible otherwise. It seems that this is linked to brawls, between Iraqis and Afghans,  the investigation takes its cause,”  – said one of the Mayor’s aids  Olivier Caremelle.

According to several witnesses, the tensions came from the increase in the number of Afghans who arrived after the dismantling of the “Jungle” of Calais, 40 kilometers away. The Afghans were unhappy about being stationed in the communal kitchens, while the Kurds slept in cabins in better conditions. The fire was intended to destroy the sheds of Kurds, the Afghans envied, according to preliminary conclusions.

The local authorities, polices and NGOs continue to work at the spot.

“Massive and uncontrolable migraion leads to chaos and violence. It is urgent to re-establish order in France,” – said Marine Le Pen – the leader of the Front National, the candidate for upcoming presidential elections.