The ECDC Communicable Disease Threats Report (CDTR) is a weekly bulletin for epidemiologists and health professionals on active public health threats. This issue covers the period 19-25 March 2017 and includes updates on influenza, Legionnaires' disease and rubella.
After increasing Germany’s support for humanitarian assistance and stabilisation in Iraq and Syria by 235 million euros, Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel made the following comments in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung on the occasion of the meeting in Washington of the Global Coalition working to defeat ISIS:
IS is on the retreat everywhere. In Iraq alone, more than one and a half million people have been able to return to areas freed from the clutches of the terrorist militia.
Regional mixed migration summary for February 2017 covering mixed migration events, trends and data for Djibouti, Eritrea, South Sudan, Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Puntland, Somalia, Somaliland and Yemen.
Terminology: Throughout this report the term migrant/refugee is used to cover all those involved in the mixed migration flows (including asylum seekers, trafficked persons, smuggled economic migrants, refugees). If the caseload mentioned refers only to refugees or asylum seekers or trafficked persons it will be clearly stated.
Many refugee and asylum-seeker women and girls have been exposed to gender-based violence taking the form of coercion, forced prostitution, harassment, survival sex, sexual slavery or various forms of extortions. However, “their protection from violence has not been considered a priority in the management of the refugee crisis”, today said PACE Committee on Equality and Non-Discrimination. According to parliamentarians, “the gender dimension of the refugee crisis has been largely overlooked”.
Until 28 February 2017, there were 13,439 cumulative arrivals to Italy, compared to 9,101 arrivals recorded in the same month in 2016 (a 48% increase). Greece has seen a 98% lower number of arrivals in February 2017 when compared to the same period in 2016, 2,611 and 125,494 respectively.
According to available data, there have been 17,479 new arrivals to Greece, Italy and Bulgaria, as countries of first arrival to Europe since the beginning of 2017 till 28 of February 2017.
*There has again been an increase in fighting along the western coast of Yemen since the beginning of the year. The situation of the civilian population is dire, and millions of people face starvation. Against this background, Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel on Thursday (16 March) met with UN Special Envoy for Yemen Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed. Gabriel demanded that, “in view of the devastating humanitarian situation in Yemen, the parties to the conflict must urgently return to the negotiating table.” *
Severe famine looms
The ECDC Communicable Disease Threats Report (CDTR) is a weekly bulletin for epidemiologists and health professionals on active public health threats. This issue covers the period 12-18 March 2017 and includes updates on cholera, measles and Legionnaires disease.
Greece - Over 10,000 asylum seekers have now been relocated from Greece to other European Union (EU) and Associated States since the start of the EU relocation programme according to IOM, which is implementing the scheme.
Bärbel Kofler, Federal Government Commissioner for Human Rights Policy and Humanitarian Aid at the Federal Foreign Office, issued the following statement today (16 March) on the situation in the Philippines:
Eurostat News Release 46/2017 - 16 March 2017
In 2016, 1 204 300 first time asylum seekers applied for international protection in the Member States of the European Union (EU), a number slightly down compared with 2015 (when 1 257 000 first time applicants were registered) but almost double that of 2014 (562 700).
Syrians (334 800 first time applicants), Afghans (183 000) and Iraqis (127 000) remained the main citizenship of people seeking international protection in the EU Member States in 2016, accounting for slightly more than half of all first time applicants.
The number of children on the Central Mediterranean Route is on the rise with more than 2,450 child arrivals in the first two months of 2017 (compared to 1,388 during the same period in 2016). Meanwhile, European countries registered 7,678 new first-time asylum claims by children (5,000 of them in Germany), while 25,080 children remain stranded in Greece and other Balkan countries.
The humanitarian situation is very serious for many people in Iraq, despite it usually being overshadowed by the crisis in Syria. The huge efforts of the international community have so far prevented a humanitarian disaster in Mosul. Germany is one of the largest donors of aid to the people in need in Iraq. In 2016 alone, the Federal Foreign Office invested more than 119 million euros in humanitarian aid projects. The main focuses of Germany’s engagement are the provision of drinking water and mine clearance.
Following a phone call with UN Emergency Relief Coordinator Stephen O’Brien, Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel issued the following statement today (12 March):
BY PHILLIP CONNOR
Europe’s record for annual asylum applications was nearly broken last year, but the numbers trailed off considerably by the end of 2016 and fell short of the previous year’s peak surge in late summer and early fall.
Turkey - Since July 2016, IOM Turkey has helped over 15,000 Syrians to access Germany’s Family Assistance Programme (FAP). The programme helps vulnerable migrants to apply for German family reunification visas and avoid dangerous irregular migration by sea across the Mediterranean.
Over half a million Syrians and Iraqis have registered for asylum in Germany since 2015 and approximately 320,000 have been granted refugee status, according to the German Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF).
"Experience shows that voluntary returns are most cost-effective"
* EU prioritises voluntary returns to tackle migrant crisis
* Many migrants struggle as street vendors in Italy
* Germany investing heavily in voluntary assisted returns
* Italy invests less despite large arrival numbers
By Steve Scherer
Iraq - IOM Iraq and the Consulate General of the Federal Republic of Germany in Erbil this week hosted the official opening of a Family Assistance Programme (FAP) service centre for Syrians and Iraqis in Erbil.
The centre was officially opened by Karim Sinjari, Minister of Interior of the Kurdistan Regional Government in Iraq, and Iman Naji Hindi, Director General in the Ministry of Migration and Displacement of the Government of Iraq.
Kismaayo, 1 March 2017 - A rehabilitation centre for former Al-Shabaab combatants was officially opened today in Kismaayo, the interim administrative capital of Jubbaland state.
The Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration (DDR) centre is the fourth facility to be established in Somalia as part of the federal government’s National Programme for the Treatment and Handling of Disengaged Combatants.