By Nichola Jones, IFRC
The closure of the Western Balkan route in February and the implementation of the EU-Turkey deal in March, which will see new arrivals in Greece and potentially returned to Turkey, has seen the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) shift its response to meet the changing needs of migrants.
Arrivals into Greece continue but have plummeted with a daily average of 47 people per day
The United States and 47 other UN member states have endorsed the joint statement below affirming the importance of and adherence to international humanitarian law at the World Humanitarian Summit, Istanbul, May 23–24.
Italy - IOM reports an estimated 191,134 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea in 2016 through 21 May, arriving in Italy, Greece, Cyprus and Spain.
Deaths through 21 May this year stand at 1,370 on all Mediterranean routes, which is 24 percent lower than last year’s total of 1,792 through the same period.
Tripoli, Libya | AFP | Tuesday 5/24/2016 - 09:51 GMT | 408 words
Workers on a Libyan oil tanker helped to rescue 135 people from boats in the Mediterranean on Tuesday, an AFP journalist said, hours after coastguards detained 550 would-be migrants headed for Europe.
Coastguards were alerted to people aboard makeshift vessels around 17 nautical miles (30 kilometres) from the western city of Sabratha, the journalist said.
The migrants were transported to a safe zone nearer to the capital Tripoli.
Idomeni, Greece | AFP | Tuesday 5/24/2016 - 19:59 GMT
Greek police on Tuesday transferred over two thousand migrants out of the overcrowded camp of Idomeni, launching a major operation to clear up the squalid tent city where thousands fleeing war and poverty have lived for months
The operation began shortly after sunrise, and by evening police said they had put 2,024 people on buses to newly opened camps near Greece's second city Thessaloniki, about 80 kilometres (50 miles) to the south.
The Foreign Ministry informs that the general purpose first aid kits donated by Italy and destined to the hospitals of Benghazi have been delivered today. The kits will be able to treat approximately 20,000 patients over the next three months.
The kits arrived in Tripoli, from where they were subsequently taken to Benghazi by land and were delivered to the local depot of the Health authorities, who will then distribute them to the various health care facilities.
This week the Italian Development Cooperation (IDC) in collaboration with UNOPS announced a donation of two vehicles to the Italian NGO, Doctors with Africa, CUAMM
CUAMM has been supporting the strengthening of local health systems in South Sudan since 2007, helping to improve the delivery of basic and emergency healthcare services across the country.Dr. Dario Mariani, an IDC representative, attended the handover event in the presence of UNOPS Head of Programme, Richard Martin Schroeder, and CUAMM Deputy Country Manager, Paolo Ferrari.
19 May 2016
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, participated yesterday in the First Italy-Africa Ministerial Conference, organised in Rome by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, in conjunction with the Institute for International Political Studies (ISPI).
Italy - IOM reports an estimated 190,973 migrants and refugees have entered Europe by sea in 2016 through 18 May, arriving in Italy, Greece, Cyprus and Spain.
Deaths through 18 May this year stand at 1,359 on all Mediterranean routes.
Meanwhile, over 1,600 migrants have been brought to Italy since Tuesday.
In Greece, during the week of 9 May, IOM led an escort mission for 20 unaccompanied children (seven from Pakistan, six from Afghanistan, five from Syria, one from Palestine, and one from Egypt) who were escorted from the First Reception Centre in Lesvos to a new accommodation facility in Mytilene.
Arrivals and Departures
As of 18 May 2016, 60 countries and territories report continuing mosquito-borne transmission (Fig. 1) of which:
46 countries are experiencing a first outbreak of Zika virus since 2015, with no previous evidence of circulation, and with ongoing transmission by mosquitos (Table 1).
14 countries reported evidence of Zika virus transmission between 2007 and 2014, with ongoing transmission.
Today, the Commission adopted its latest progress report on the EU's emergency relocation and resettlement schemes, assessing actions taken up to 13 May 2016. Overall, progress remains unsatisfactory since the Commission's second report, despite signs of increased preparation for future action: few relocations have taken place since mid-April, though the pipeline of future relocations has been strengthened.
Humanitarian groups are questioning Italy's ability to handle minors and victims of torture, as irregular migration from North African continues. Diego Cupolo reports from Pozzallo, Sicily.
Of the 142 asylum-seekers cooped up over the weekend in Sicily’s Pozzallo hotspot reception center - one of several in southern Italy - 120 were unaccompanied minors, some as young as 10 and 12 years old.
Planning and Preparation:
A huge shortfall in funds for sheltering refugees is severely undermining efforts to tackle the biggest global displacement crisis since World War II. At the launch today of a new global campaign, called “Nobody Left Outside,” UNHCR emphasised that efforts to provide adequate shelter for refugees under its care were facing a half-billion-dollar deficit. Nobody Left Outside calls on the private sector to contribute funds for shelter solutions for 2 million refugees.
The Commissioner-General of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), Pierre Krähenbühl, concluded a two-day mission to Italy on Tuesday. Over the course of the visit, he met with senior government officials, parliamentarians, representatives from non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and local media to deepen ties with Italian institutions and raise awareness about the work of UNRWA and the current situation facing Palestine refugees.
European Commission - Press release
Relocation and Resettlement: EU Member States must act to sustain current management of flows
Brussels, 18 May 2016
Arrivals and Departures
Larnaca, Cyprus | AFP | Tuesday 5/17/2016 - 17:14 GMT
Four African refugees arrived in Cyprus from Italy on Tuesday as part of an EU relocation programme for asylum seekers to help ease Europe's migration crisis, officials said.
The young men -- three from Eritrea and the other from central Africa -- are the first batch to arrive from Italy in Cyprus and the second to be accommodated on the Mediterranean island under the scheme.
Rome, Italy | AFP | Tuesday 5/17/2016 - 15:47 GMT
An Italian prosecutor on Tuesday requested an 18-year prison term for the alleged captain of a migrant boat which sank off Libya in April 2015, killing as many as 800 people, Italian media reported.
The accused skipper, Mohammed Ali Malek, claims he was a migrant himself and had been made to steer the boat by the real traffickers.