People being deported from Greece to Turkey by Frontex officials on April 4
Further to President Michael D Higgins’ speech on Monday in which he was critical of Europe’s response to refugees and migrants who are continuing to travel to Europe…
A petition calling on the next Irish government to demand an end to the EU/Turkey deal states:
Since early March, the EU-Turkey Deal has been implemented against refugees and migrants. This deal designates Turkey as a safe third country, something it patently is not. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, 16 people, including three children, were killed by border guards as they crossed into Turkey this year.
Amnesty International has reported on such killings, predominantly of Syrian refugees, since 2013. Not alone this, but Amnesty has also documented that Turkish authorities have been expelling groups of around 100 Syrian men, women and children to Syria almost daily since mid- January.
This mass expulsion of people to a war zone is illegal under Turkish, EU and international law. The registration process in Turkey is also deeply flawed and conditions in the camps there are often unsafe and present multiple health hazards.
…The EU must recognise that people will continue to flee war, danger and precarity, and that these measures are just driving them to make ever more dangerous journeys. Thousands of children have disappeared in Europe, almost 6,000 refugee children and minors were reported missing in Germany last year.
European Union estimates that at least 10,000 child refugees had disappeared after arriving in the continent were “very likely to be underestimated”, according to a senior official at Unicef. Children and vulnerable adults are being preyed on by traffickers and criminals.
The amount of money spent on policing and militarising this crisis could help to resettle the people in need of asylum, this is clearly not a financial issue.
We are witnessing the greatest displacement of people since the Second World War and this time we can see it unfold on our TV screens and computers. The response of the EU is shameful, inhumane and wrong.
Will the next generation look back on this time and wonder how it happened, how we let it happen?
Ireland has responsibilities to these people as it plays a role in their displacement due to the use of Shannon Airport by the US military.
The wars that refugees are fleeing from resulted from invasions, occupations and deliberate aggravation of pre-existing tensions by the US military that we have been supporting at Shannon for the last 15 years.
Ireland also has a proud history of humanitarian activity, let us take a stand now to do the right thing, to play a positive and decent part in this crisis.
Call on your TDs to demand the suspension of the EU/Turkey Deal and for Ireland to accept more refugees. The resilience, courage, solidarity and community they manage to create despite these terrible circumstances could immeasurably enrich our societies.
Let’s be on the right side of history this time. Demand the human rights of migrants are upheld and that there is safe passage for all.
Anyone who wishes can sign the petition – which will be sent to the signee’s local TDs – here
Previously: ‘Is Our Response To Be Defined By Barbed Wire, Tear Gas And Rubber Bullets?