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13 Nov 2015 description

Paris, France | AFP | Friday 11/13/2015 - 19:27 GMT

Several EU countries have reintroduced border checks as Europe struggles under the strain of its worst migrant crisis since World War II, threatening to undermine the bloc's cherished passport-free Schengen zone.

EU President Donald Tusk warned on Thursday Europe faces a "race against time" to save the 20-year-old system, which is seen as one of the union's most concrete achievements.

06 Nov 2015 description

Bělá pod Bezdězem, Czech Republic | AFP | Friday 11/6/2015 - 02:46 GMT | 454 words

by Jan Flemr

Refugees at a Czech detention centre that the UN termed "degrading" last month due to poor living conditions said Thursday they still felt like "prisoners", despite improvements at the facility.

The Bela-Jezova facility northeast of the capital Prague opened its doors to diplomats and journalists on Thursday to showcase recent upgrades.

30 Oct 2015 description

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs closely follows comments voiced by foreign partners including the United Nations, the Council of Europe or NGOs regarding the situation in the Czech Republic. At the same time, the Czech Foreign Minister is ready to establish an open dialogue on the issue.

28 Oct 2015 description

“The first responses of EU member states are coming in with regard to deploying police forces,” the State Secretary at the Ministry of the Interior, Boštjan Šefic, told today’s press conference.

Assistance was offered by Austria, which has already sent officers, while others are expected from the Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Germany, Slovakia, Spain and France, said Šefic. Slovenia expects other EU member states to do the same.

22 Oct 2015 description

GENEVA (22 October 2015) – UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein on Thursday strongly criticized the detention of migrants and refugees who have arrived in the Czech Republic since August 2015, drawing particular attention to the violations of the rights of the children among them.

22 Oct 2015 description

Berlin, Germany | AFP | Tuesday 10/20/2015 - 11:13 GMT

by Hui Min NEO with Bojan KAVCIC in Dobova, Slovenia

German officials said Thursday they had foiled an extremist plot to torch migrant shelters, adding to concerns over rising attacks on refugees in Europe as migrant arrivals hit new records.

Police in the southern German town of Bamberg arrested 13 members of a far-right movement suspected of planning to set fire to two homes for asylum seekers, prosecutors said.

16 Oct 2015 description

Paris, France | AFP | Friday 10/16/2015 - 17:00 GMT

More than 610,000 people desperately fleeing war and poverty have reached Europe's shores in 2015, as the continent struggles with its worst migrant crisis since World War II, the International Organization for Migration said Friday.

Here is a look at six key phases in the crisis.

  • Europe overwhelmed -

After some 1,200 migrants drown in a week in April off the Libyan coast, EU leaders raise the alarm and triple a budget for Mediterranean operations by the border agency Frontex.

13 Oct 2015 description
report ACT Alliance

During the last 20 years, the Czech Republic has been struck by extreme floods of great extent, numerous flash floods of local importance and uncommon natural disasters such as tornado in 2013.

Global climate change may contribute to more extreme weather events like these and communities need to be ready.

Dolni Berkovice, a village with 1.500 inhabitants in the Central Bohemia Region, has always been endangered by the river Elbe.

However, no one remembers the floods to be as destructive as in the last decade.

13 Oct 2015 description
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Where do we go from here? People with specific needs and the quest for durable solutions

13 Oct 2015 description

Prague, Czech Republic | AFP | Tuesday 10/13/2015 - 15:16 GMT

A Czech human rights official said Tuesday conditions at a local detention centre for refugees, including children, were worse than in jail.

"We are speaking about a former military facility that in many respects offers worse conditions than Czech prisons," said Anna Sabatova, an independent rights official tasked with monitoring the government, after visiting a refugee centre in the northern village of Bela-Jezova.

12 Oct 2015 description

Pledges confirmed since 2013: 96,688
Additional places/visas granted under other forms of admission: 14,074
Resettlement submissions to the USA: 19,646
TOTAL places made available to date: 130,408

09 Oct 2015 description
report UN General Assembly


Ad Hoc Committee for Voluntary Contributions to UNRWA, 1st Meeting (AM)

General Assembly President Urges Continuing Support in Absence of Solution to Palestinian Question, amid Broader Refugee Crisis

A total of 21 donors today announced contributions, or their intention to contribute, to the 2016 budget of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), as officials urged stable financing for the Agency against a backdrop of expanding crises in the Middle East.

07 Oct 2015 description

Few issues arouse such strong passions as immigration, where concrete economic and social challenges overlap with the fundamental concept of national identity. It is thus not surprising that Europe is having difficulty in coming to grips with the current refugee crisis.

07 Oct 2015 description
report Oxfam

Es necesario actuar para ofrecer ayuda y refugio y poner fin al derramamiento de sangre

Para la comunidad internacional, la llegada de decenas de miles de sirios a las fronteras europeas y las estremecedoras muertes de hombres, mujeres, niños y niñas durante el peligroso viaje para llegar hasta ellas se han convertido en un brutal recordatorio de la tragedia en la que está sumido el pueblo sirio. La desesperación en la que se ve sumida la población siria lleva a que muchas personas tengan que asumir riesgos inmensos para ellas y sus familias.

07 Oct 2015 description
report Oxfam

Il faut agir pour offrir assistance et refuge et mettre fin au bain de sang

L’arrivée ces dernières semaines de dizaines de milliers de Syriens aux frontières de l’Europe et la mort choquante de femmes, d’enfants et d’hommes lors de leur périple périlleux, secouent la communauté internationale et l’interpellent devant la tragédie qui engloutit le peuple syrien. Leur désespoir est tel que les Syriens en sont venus à prendre d’immenses risques pour eux-mêmes et leurs familles.

07 Oct 2015 description
report Oxfam

Action needed on aid, refuge, and to end the bloodshed

Author: Caroline Baudot, Oxfam Humanitarian Policy Adviser; Daniel Gorevan, Oxfam Campaigns and Policy Manager, Syria crisis

The arrival of tens of thousands of Syrians to Europe’s borders and the shocking deaths of women, children and men on their perilous journey has been a sharp reminder to the international community of the tragedy engulfing the people of Syria. Syrians put themselves and their families at so much risk only out of sheer desperation.

24 Sep 2015 description

Budapest, Hungary | AFP | Thursday 9/24/2015 - 12:01 GMT

by Peter Murphy with Hui Min Neo in Berlin

Thousands of migrants streamed through the Balkans Thursday as German Chancellor Angela Merkel warned after an emergency summit that Europe still had to get to grips with its biggest post-war refugee crisis.

French officials meanwhile said a young African was killed by a Channel Tunnel train while trying to get to Britain, the latest of thousands of deaths this year of people desperate to start a new life in Europe.

23 Sep 2015 description

Brussels, Belgium | AFP | Thursday 9/17/2015 - 12:20 GMT

by Danny Kemp and Lachlan Carmichael

EU leaders were to stage an emergency summit Wednesday on boosting aid and tightening borders to tackle the migration crisis, but a growing east-west split over a deal to relocate 120,000 refugees threatened to poison the talks.

Hours before the meeting, Hungary's prime minister rejected Angela Merkel's "moral imperialism" over the worst such crisis since World War II while Slovakia said it would dispute the refugee quota deal in court.

23 Sep 2015 description
report European Commission

What is the European Agenda on Migration and what is its state of play?

Tackling migration is one of the ten political priorities of this Commission. The European Agenda on Migration develops the political guidelines of President Juncker into tailored initiatives aimed at managing migration better in all its aspects. The Agenda, adopted on 13 May 2015 put forward concrete actions to respond to the immediate crisis and save lives at sea, and proposed structural responses for the medium and long term.

22 Sep 2015 description

The Hague, Netherlands | AFP | Tuesday 9/22/2015 - 19:59 GMT

Three young Dutch start-up entrepreneurs have launched a website to find temporary accommodation for refugees fleeing to Europe, modelled on the popular Airbnb home rental site.

But on Refugee Hero, created in just four days and launched on Monday, no money changes hands.

Instead private individuals, and organisations such as churches, schools and mosques, can advertise how much space they can spare for free, and leave a contact phone number for migrants seeking accommodation to get in touch.