Guide to GHM on-line material on refugee and migrant human rights issues

Push-backs

Check here our general report (many of the incident reports in it are in English) on push backs concerning more than 1000 cases of asylum seekers that were allegedly pushed back in Turkey. The data includes our direct documentation following online communication with asylum seekers, other Ngo reports, articles, social media posts offering specific documentation and, most importantly, a CPT report. The majority of the incidents took place near Evros Greece-Turkey border (and some others occurred in the sea) during the last 4 years. It is this link we officially forwarded to the Supreme Court prosecutor on 12/06/2019. Many allegations are also on ill-treatment, including torture, by the police or the army and/or unknown perpetrators. Some of the cases (those that were already well documented enough) had already been lodged to hate crime prosecutors. Those cases are 1) 02/06/2018: Push-back attempt concerning 35 asylum seekers (20 minors) by Frontex in Lesvos 2) 19/01/2019: Murderous boat push-back near Samos (1 child drowned). Immigrants accuse the Greek Coast Guard 3) 09/05/2019: 51 Syrian refugees pushed back near Samos by masked men 4) 08/06/2019: Iraqi and Egyptian asylum seekers violently pushed back and tortured in Evros 5) 08/06/2019: Turkish asylum seekers pushed back by the Greek police, co-operating with Turkish citizens, in Evros. All the dates refer to the date our complaint was filed and not the date of the incident which you can see inside in Greek. Included in our general report you can also find these statements:

CPT: “The delegation received several consistent and credible allegations of informal forcible removals (push-backs) of foreign nationals by boat from Greece to Turkey at the Evros River border by masked Greek police and border guards or (para-)military commandos. In a number of these cases, the persons concerned alleged that they had been ill-treated and, in particular, subjected to baton blows after they had been made to kneel face-down on the boat during the push-back operations. ” (https://rm.coe.int/16808afaf6)

Commissioner for HR of CoE: “However, many of the Commissioner’s interlocutors also drew her attention to consistent allegations of summary returns (“push-backs”) to Turkey, often accompanied by the use of violence, preventing migrants from accessing the asylum procedure. The Commissioner notes with concern that such push-back operations were documented in several recent reports by civil society organizations containing numerous testimonies. She also notes that, in June 2017, similar documented allegations led her predecessor to express his concerns and the Greek Ombudsman to launch an ex officio investigation into this alleged practice. In addition, the Council of Europe’s Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (hereinafter “CPT”) indicated in the preliminary observations published on 1 June 2018 following its April 2018 ad hoc visit to Greece that it also received several consistent and credible allegations of push-back operations including ill-treatment. ” (https://rm.coe.int/report-on-the-visit-to-greece…/16808ea5bd)

Detention

26/4/2019: GHM – RRE communication to Council of Europe on asylum, living conditions and detention of asylum seekers published without government answer

04 – 06/06/2019: M.S.S. & Rahimi v. Greece asylum cases – Supervision of execution of ECtHR judgments by Council of Europe’s Committee of Ministers [with reference to GHM-RRE, GCR and UNHCR submissions]

Generally on ill-treatment, torture, and impunity

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