EU mulls new system to check illegal pushbacks of migrants

Sallie Anderson

The European Commission states it might now propose a new system to screen illegal pushbacks of migrants – in the middle of installing proof of abuse by both Croatia and Greece.

Speaking to MEPs on Monday (6 July), the European Commissioner for home affairs Ylva Johansson stated more requirements to be done to ensure EU specifies regard basic rights while protecting borders.

“It is time to consider if we also need to put in place a new mechanism to monitor and verify reports of pushbacks,” she stated.

No specifics were offered.

The statement marks an advancement, given that the commission has for weeks declined to knock declared infractions along the borders, in addition to a month-long suspension of asylum hunter rights in Greece.

It likewise comes in the middle of installing proof of push backs of people in the Aegean sea and along the Croat border by masked punks.

The shooting deaths of numerous young men along the Greek-Turkish border in March have actually likewise awakened sharp criticism in the middle of significant video footage of bloodied bodies being brought away.

Examinations by a number of media outlets likewise show people in boats being yanked out to sea towards Turkey and set adrift by what appears to be the Greek Coast Guard.

One such occurrence was recorded on video on 4 June.

Greek authorities have actually turned down all the claims, explaining them as a mix of phony news and Turkish propaganda.

Another occurrence of push backs was exposed by a Danish patrol boat, who previously this year had actually declined an order they stated was offered to them by the Greek authorities.

Frontex, the EU border firm, explained that occurrence as a “misunderstanding.”

However MEPs in European Parliament’s civil liberties committee required responses.

On Monday, they held a hearing on the claims connected to the push backs and the shootings.

3 Greek ministers were welcomed however stopped working to attend to the issues and declined to respond to some concerns.

Amongst them was one from Ruiz Devesa, a Spanish socialist MEP.

” In the Der Spiegel we read of cases where Greek masked coast guards were shooting at sea and leaving migrants to their fate. What can be done to prevent this circumstance from ever re-occuring once again?” he had actually asked Greece’s minister of migration and asylum Notis Mitarachi.

However Mitarachi, after a brief instruction on asylum figures in Greece, had already left the hearing.

The concern was then asked once again to Giorgos Koumoutsakos, a Greek official who had actually stood in for Mitarachi.

He skirted the concern entirely.

Michalis Chrisochoidis, Greece’s minister of resident security, previously in the hearing refuted any idea that Greek authorities might have shot dead a Syrian.

“I heard about sharp shooters. I mean there are no sharp shooters in the Greek police. We did not use guns, it was only police measures,” he stated.

“If there is any allegation, please send it to us, we will look into it,” he added.

The Syrian shot dead was a young male from Aleppo called Muhammad al Arab.

He was eliminated on 2 March, one day prior to European Commission president Von Der Leyen went to the area and explained Greece as a “shield” for the entire of Europe.

Forensic Architecture, a London-based research study firm, stated al Arab had actually been killed by a group of armed Greek soldiers.

The problem has actually given that been raised by the German EU presidency ahead of an event of EU interior ministers on Tuesday.

“This is a fundamental violation of human rights and human dignity,” Horst Seehofer, Germany’s interior minister, informed press reporters of the supposed push backs.

Tuesday’s ministerial conference resolved another significant problem handling search and saves at sea, where just a handful of EU states concur to take in people, and after that just after prolonged hold-ups.

One such boat, a Lebanese animal freight ship, is currently moored off the Maltese coast with some 52 saved migrants.

“It is quite embarrassing that a community like the European Union is unable to respond to an issue of such huge dimensions,” stated Seehofer.

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