Freedom not Frontex

Europese Leiders vergaderen 26 en 27 juni in Brussel over hun omstreden repressieve migratiebeleid. Vluchtelingen en activisten komen ook. Om hun vrijheid op te eisen.

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March 2 Freedom 18 – 19 mei: Kom mee de grens oversteken!

Vanuit Nederland organiseert Freedom Not Frontex NL een bustocht naar de Duitse plaats Kehl om deel te nemen aan de eerste grensoversteek van de March 2 Freedom, naar Strasbourg. De March 2 Freedom is een internationaal protest van vluchtelingen en supporters.
Uit Nederland doet een groep vluchtelingen mee van We Are Here aan deze eerste grensoversteek, maar ook sympathisanten en ondersteuners zijn van de partij.

Er zijn nog plaatsen in de bus en je kunt je o.v.v. ‘aanmelden bus naar Kehl’ aanmelden om mee te gaan op freedomnotfrontexnl@gmail.com

Vertrek: Zaterdag 17 mei
Voorverzamelen: Zaterdag 17 mei, 22.30 uur Ten Katestraat 49, Amsterdam. Hier vindt de voorbespreking plaats en daarna lopen we gezamelijk naar de bus.
Meenemen: tent, slaapspullen, eten en drinken voor tijdens de reis, spandoeken.
Reisduur: ongeveer 9 en half uur.
Aankomst in Kehl: in de loop van de ochtend van 18 mei.

Start in Kehl: Zondag 18 mei, 13 uur.
We lopen naar Strasbourg en steken daarbij de grens Duitsland – Frankrijk over, met of zonder papieren en met of zonder toestemming. In Strasbourg is die dag een muziekconcert.

Strasbourg: Maandag 19 mei vinden er acties plaats, waaraan we willen deelnemen.
Terugreis: gepland rond 22 uur. Deze tijd kan afhankelijk van de gebeurtenissen veranderen.
Terug in Nederland, Amsterdam: Dinsdagmorgen 20 mei vroeg in de morgen.
Wie wil blijven om verder mee te lopen in de mars vanaf 21 mei, kan dat natuurlijk doen. Terugreis is dan voor eigen verantwoordelijkheid. Wie de mars uitloopt ziet ons weer in Brussel op 20 juni.

Er wordt voorzien in juridische ondersteuning op het thuisfront, waarmee contact wordt gehouden.
Als het lukt, gaat er ook wat pers mee. Dit zal dan gaan om schrijvende en/of fotograferende en/of filmende verslaggevers, van reguliere en/of eigen media.

Kosten:
Vluchtelingen: gratis.
Supporters: we vragen een donatie om de kosten te helpen dekkken. Richtprijs: 25 euro. Heb je minder maar wil je wel graag mee, dan kan dat. Kun je meer missen, dan is dat zeer welkom.

Meer vervoer bij meer deelnemers?
Indien zich meer mensen aanmelden dan er in de bus passen, hebben we extra vervoer nodig. Kun je vervoer aanbieden, mail ons dan.

Wie zich aanmeldt, sturen we in de loop van de komende weken extra informatie over waar rekening mee te houden en wat te overwegen. Afhankelijk van het aantal aanmeldingen en de plaatsen waaruit mensen zich aanmelden, bekijken we of we een stop inlassen om nog wat mensen buiten Amsterdam elders in het land op te pikken. Ook deze informatie wordt per e-mail verzonden.
Heb je eerder al vragen, mail dan ook naar freedomnotfrontexnl@gmail.com.

OPROEP 18 MEI – 21 JUNI: MARCH 2 FREEDOM Durf jij zonder de juiste papieren een grens over te steken?
Heb je je wel eens afgevraagd wat mensen die dat doen bezielt?
Vluchtelingen worden in Europa met een erg moeilijke situatie geconfronteerd – beroofd van basale rechten, zoals de vrijheid van beweging, de vrijheid om te werken, het recht op een waardig bestaan. Dit is waarom vluchtelingen en steungroepen van 18 mei tot 21 juni een 450 kilometer lange mars zullen houden van Strasbourg naar Brussel, gevolgd door een week van actie.

Kijk op ‘nieuws’ voor het laatste nieuws!

Vluchtelingen in verzet

Sinds 2011 voeren vluchtelingen in zowel Nederland als andere Europes landen zoals Duitsland, Zwitserland, Frankrijk en België, actie voor hun verblijfsrecht (en verbetering van hun leefomstandigheden). In Nederland gebeurde dit in diverse tentactiekampen in o.a. Ter Apel, Den Haag en Amsterdam, bij de IND op de stoep in Den Bosch en Zwolle, en sinds december 2012 vanuit verschillende gekraakte kerken en kantoorgebouwen en een garage.
Deze acties hebben tot doel om de ontberingen van de vluchtelingen in Europa onder de publieke aandacht te brengen en het recht van bestaan voor vluchtelingen in Nederland te eisen. Het laat zien dat de situatie niet langer wordt genegeerd en dat de situatie dat mensen stil worden gehouden niet langer wordt geaccepteerd. Want: Wij zijn hier!

Verborgen oorlog tegen vluchtelingen

De Europese Raad en de Europese ministers van Buitenlandse Zaken voeren een kapitalistisch apartheidsbeleid beleid tegen vluchtelingen en migranten, en beschouwen migratie beleid als een kwestie van beveiliging. Dit leidt tot gemilitariseerde grenscontrole aan de buitengrenzen van Europa, met als gevolg dat een toenemend aantal mensen sterven in hun poging omm bescherming te zoeken.
In de Middellandse Zee verdrinken regelmatig vluchtelingen omdat de toegenomen Europese grensbewaking gecoördineerd door Frontex mensen dwingt om lange en gevaarlijke routes te nemen. Wanneer zij om hulp roepen veelal aan hun lot worden overgelaten, zelfs beschoten. Aan de grens tussen Marokko en Spanje vinden veel mensen de dood in hun pogingen om over het grenshek rond Mellila te klimmen. In februari stierven 15 mensen en bij de laatste grensoverschrijding in maart verloren minstens vier mensen hun leven.

Ondanks het groot aantal mensen dat elk jaar door de buitengrenzen van de Europese Unie wordt vermoord, wordt het Europese migratiebeleid verder gemilitariseeerd. In december 2013 werd overeenstemming bereikt over het Eurosur programma. Dit progamma financiert met een budget van 224 miljoen euro het gebruik van drones, hoge-resolutie camera’s en kustsensoren. De Europese Unie zet ook het proces van de externalisering van de grenzen voort, door mobiliteitspartnerschappen te sluiten waarin een terugname overeenkomst is opgenomen.

Op dit moment onderhandelt de Europese Unie met Marokko over een terugname overeenkomst. Dit betekent dat elke vluchteling die het Europees territorium via Marokko binnenkomt geen recht meer heeft om in Europa asiel aan te vragen. In januari 2014 heeft Marokko voor het eerst vluchtelingen het recht toegekend om asiel aan te vragen. In de laatste jaren is Marokko zelf zwaar bekritiseerd vanwege hun slechte bescherming en het gevaar dat vluchtelingen lopen in het land. Onder andere Artsen zonder Grenzen heeft verschillende rapporten gepubliceerd erover en is gestopt in het land te werken.

Eenmaal aangekomen in Europa, wacht vluchtelingen een onzeker en verborgen bestaan. Veel mensen raken verstrikt in de Zuidelijke landen van de Europese Unie, zoals Griekenland, Spanje, Italië, Bulgarije. Financiele crises in samenhang met toenemend racisme maakt het leven in deze landen, vooral Griekenland, een dagelijkse strijd om te overleven. Het Europese antwoord hierop is de financiering van detentiecentra. Als gevolg hiervan worden mensen die bescherming zoeken in feite in gevangenissen vastgehouden. In veel nieuw gebouwde detentiecentra zijn de omstandigheden slecht, en ze zijn overbevolkt. Ook in Noord Europa zijn detentiecentra in gebruik. De UNHCR is tegen het Europese beleid om mensen in detentiecentra te stoppen.
Als mensen erin slagen hieraan te ontsnappen of hun asiel aanvraag wordt geweigerd belanden ze in een situatie waarin ze worden uitgebuit, gedwongen worden op straat te leven, waarbij veel mensen omkomen door onbehandelde ziekte, kou, racistische aanvallen of zelfmoord.

De handen ineen slaan

Dit jaar slaan de vluchtelingen internationaal de handen ineen en vragen daarbij om steun en solidariteit van ons allemaal. Van 18 mei tot en met 21 juni zullen vluchtelingen en steungroepen een mars houden die kort voor de Europese parlementsverkiezingen start in Kehl, niet ver van Strasbourg, en eindigt in Brussel voor een week van actie. In Brussel vindt aan het eind van die actieweek een Europese migratietop plaats: 26 en 27 juni.
Het doel van de mars is om te laten zien dat de migratiewetten van de EU landen, die mensen elke vrijheid van beweging ontnemen door hun vingerafdrukken te registreren en asielaanvragen in meer dan één land te verbieden, getrotseerd kunnen en moeten worden. Met deze mars willen we een einde eisen aan de inhumane en mensonterende behandeling van mensen aan de grenzen van de Europese Unie en de grenzen van de lidstaten.

Vluchtelingen zullen openlijk de grenzen tussen de landen Duitsland en Frankrijk, Frankrijk en Luxemburg, en Luxemburg en België oversteken. We vinden dat vooral mensen die het voorrecht hebben te beschikken over vrijheid van beweging een verantwoordelijkheid hebben om de inhumane migratiepolitiek van ‘hun’ regeringen te beëindigen. We kunnen niet langer toestaan dat deze politiek van migratiecontrole en deportaties in onze naam wordt uitgevoerd.

Doe mee!

We willen je uitnodigen om deel te nemen aan de grensoverschrijding! Om onze solidariteit volledig te tonen vragen we je te overwegen om je papieren thuis te laten, zodat vluchtelingen niet opnieuw als enigen de grenzen moeten oversteken zonder papieren. Het wordt tijd dat mensen zich verenigen om hun woede te tonen over een migratiebeleid dat de levens van een toenemend aantal vluchtelingen beëindigt of verwoest.

Vanuit Nederland

Vanuit Nederland wordt tweemaal vervoer georganiseerd. Op 18 mei kun je mee naar Kehl om deel te nemen aan de eerste grensoversteek naar Strasbourg. We blijven die dag in Strasbourg en overnachten er. Op 19 mei doen we mee aan acties in Strasbourg en gaan dan ‘s avonds weer terug. Je kunt mee terug, of blijven en (een deel van) de mars meelopen.
Tijdens de actieweek in Brussel wordt opnieuw vervoer georganiseerd. De definitieve datum hiervan moet nog worden vastgesteld.

De eisen van de mars zijn:

Vrijheid van beweging en vestiging voor alle vluchtelingen
Stop de valstrik van het Dublin akkoord en het gedwongen verblijf in kampen overal in Europa
Permanente verblijfsvergunningen zonder voorwaarden (niet afhankelijk van arbeidscontracten of individuele vervolging)
Stop het gevangen zetten en deporteren van migranten
Dezelfde arbeidsomstandigheden voor iedereen
Dezelfde politieke, sociale en culturele rechten voor iedereen: het recht om te werken en te studeren
Stop het Europese imperialistische beleid: een einde aan vrije handelsverdragen en NAVO oorlogen
Afschaffing van Frontex, Eurosur en ander anti-migratie beleid en maatregelen

Deze eisen kunnen ook hier gevonden worden (in het Engels)

Freedom Not Frontex NL

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March 2 Freedom May 18 – 19: Join us to cross the border!

From the Netherlands Freedom Not Frontex NL organizes a bus trip to the German city Kehl, to take part in the first border crossing of the March 2 Freedom, to Strasbourg. The March 2 Freedom is an international protest of refugees and supporters.
From the Netherlands a group of refugees from We Are Here joins this first border crossing, but also sympathizers and supporters will take part.

There are still places in the bus and you can sign up for the bus by mailing, subject: sign up, to freedomnotfrontexnl@gmail.com.

We leave: Saturday May 17
Get together: Saturday May 17, 22.30 hrs. (10.30 PM), Ten Katestraat 49, Amsterdam. Here we have a meeting to discuss a few things, after which we will walk to the bus.
Bring: tent, sleeping gear, food and drink for the trip, banners.
Duration of the trip: about 9 and half hour.
Arrival in Kehl: sometime in the morning of May 18.

Start in Kehl: Sunday May 18, 13 hrs (1 PM).
We walk to Strasbourg and by doing so we cross the border Germany – France, with or without papers and with or without permission in advance. In Strasbourg there will be a music concert that day.

Strasbourg: Monday May 19 there will be actions, in which we will participate.
Travel back: we plan to leave around 22 hrs. (10 PM). This can change, depending on events that day.
Back in the Netherlands, Amsterdam: Tuesday early morning May 20.
If you want to stay and walk the march that continues May 21, you can of course do that. But the way back is your own responsibility then. Those who walk the whole march will see us again in Brussels on June 20.

Legal support on the home front will be organized, with whom we will stay in touch.
If all goes well, there will also be press joining us. This will be writing and/or photographing and/or filming press, of regular and/or our own independent media.

Costs:
Refugees: for free.
Supporters: we ask a donation to help cover the costs. Indicative price: 25 euro. Do you have less but do you want to come, that’s okay. If you can spare more, it is very welcome.

More transportation when there are more participants?

If more people sign up that can fit in the bus, we need extra transportation. If you can offer such, mail us.

Those who sign up, will receive extra information sometime the next few weeks about things to take into account and to consider. Depending on the number of entries and the places from where people sign up, we will see if we make an extra stop elsewhere in the country, to pick up people from outside of Amsterdam.This information will also be sent by mail.
If you have any questions already, also mail us to freedomnotfrontexnl@gmail.com.

Have you ever wondered what has gotten into people who do that?

Refugees face a very difficult situation in Europe – being deprived of basic rights, such as the freedom to move, the freedom to work, the right to a life in dignity. This is why refugees and solidarity groups will march from May 18 until June 21 over 450 km from Strasbourg to Brussels, where the march will be followed by a week of action.

Check the ‘nieuws’ page for the latest news!

Refugees in resistance

Since the year 2011 refugees, in both the Netherlands and other European countries such as Germany, Switzerland, France and Belgium, take action for their right to stay (and improvement of their living conditions). In the Netherlands this took place in several tent action camps in e.g. Ter Apel, The Hague and Amsterdam, on the doorstep of the immigration office (IND) in Den Bosch and Zwolle, and since December 2012 from several squatted churches, office buildings and a garage.
These actions bring the hardship refugees face in Europe to public attention and the demand of the right of existence for refugees in the Netherlands. It shows that the situation is no longer ignored and that a situation in which people are kept silent is no longer accepted. Because: We are here!

Covered war against refugees

The European Council and the European ministers of Exterior are conducting a capitalist apartheid policy against refugees and migrants, and are maintaining a security based approach to migration policy. This leads to militarized border surveillance at Europe’s external frontiers, resulting in an increasing number of individuals dying in their attempt to seek protection.
In the Mediterranean Sea refugees regularly drown, because increased European border control coordinated by Frontex forces individuals to take long and dangerous routes. When they call for help they are often left to their fate or in some cases even shot. At the border between Morocco and Spain many people lose their lives in their attempts to cross the border fence surrounding Melilla. In February 15 people died and in the last border crossing in March at least four persons left their lives.

Despite the high number of individuals being killed each year at the external frontiers of the European Union, the European migration policy is maintaining their path of militarization. In December 2013, the Eurosur program was agreed upon. This program will, with a budget of 224 mil €, finance the employment of drones, high-resolution cameras and offshore sensors at Europe’s external frontiers. The European Union is also continuing their process of externalizing frontiers, by concluding mobility partnership agreements which include readmission agreements.

At the moment the European Union is negotiating over a readmission agreement with Morocco. This means that every refugee entering the territory of the European Union via Morocco will be deprived of the right to ask for asylum in the European Union. In January 2014, for the first time Morocco granted refugees the right to ask for asylum. In the last years Morocco itself has been criticized heavily for the low protection and danger refugees’ face in the country, e.g. Doctors without Borders have published several reports on the issue and have stopped working in Morocco.

Once refugees reach Europe, an insecure and hidden existence awaits them. Many people are trapped in the Southern countries of the European Union, e.g. Greece, Spain, Italy, Bulgaria. Financial crisis connected to mounting racism makes life in these countries, especially Greece, a daily struggle to survive. The European response is the financing of detention centers. As a result, those seeking protection are kept in de facto prisons. Many newly erected detention centers offer poor conditions and are overcrowded, leading to high rates of suicide and hunger strikes. Also in Northern Europe detention centers are used for people seeking protection. The European politics of putting people in those centers has amongst others been opposed by the UNHCR.
If people manage to escape or are refused asylum they end up in a situation in which they are exploited, forced to life on the street, many dying from untreated illness, cold, racist attacks or suicide, or gambling addiction (https://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Roulette/Math).

Join hands

This year refugees internationally join hands and are asking for support and solidarity from all of us. From May 18 until June 21 refugees and support groups have organized a protest march, starting shortly before the elections of the European Parliament in Kehl, not far from Strasbourg, and ending in Brussels for an action week. At the end of the action week, the European migration summit will take place, on June 26 and 27.
The aim of the march is to show that the migration laws of the EU countries, that take away peoples freedom of movement by registering their fingerprints and by prohibiting asylum requests in more than one country, can and have to be challenged. With this march we want to demand an end of the inhumane and degrading treatment of people at the frontiers of the European Union as well as in its Member States.

Refugees and their support groups will openly cross the borders between Germany and France, France and Luxembourg, and Luxembourg and Belgium. We believe that especially people who have the privilege to hold the right to freedom of movement, have a responsibility to end the inhumane migration policy of ‘their’ governments. We can no longer allow this policy of migration control and deportations to be carried out in our name.

Join in!

We want to invite you to join the border crossing! In order to fully show our solidarity we also want you to consider leaving your papers at home so refugees do not once again have to cross the borders without documents all by themselves. It is time that people unite to show their outrage about a migration policy that ends and devastates the lives of an increasing number of refugees!

From the Netherlands

From the Netherlands transport will be organized twice. On May 18 you can join us to Kehl for the first border crossing to Strasbourg. We stay in Strasbourg that day and spend the night there. On May 19 we take part in action in Strasbourg and we go back that evening.
You can go back with us, or stay and from there join (part of) the march.
Again, during the week of action in Brussels, transport will be organized from the Netherlands. The final date of which still has to be set.

The demands of the Europe-wide protest are:

Freedom of movement and of residence for all asylum seekers
Stop the Dublin trap and the obligatory residence in Lagers throughout Europe
Permanent documents without criteria (not depending on working contracts or individual state prosecution)
Stop the imprisonment and deportation of migrants
Same working conditions for all
Same political, social and cultural rights for all: right to study and to work
Stop the European imperialist policies: no more free trade treaties and NATOwars
Abolish Frontex, Eurosur and other anti-migration policies and measures

These demands can also be found HERE

Donations

We need a lot of money for travel expenses for the refugees to the border crossing action and the week in Brussels. Also for guidance by legal teams and medics, for action materials and mobilization flyers costs are being made. We are counting on your contribution to realize all of this! All donations, large or small, are welcome and can be transferred to IBAN: NL75 INGB 0004 2530 90. In the name of: Ithaka, Utrecht. Subject: Freedom Not Frontex NL. Thank you very much!

Freedom Not Frontex NL

Freedom Not Frontex NL has been initiated by:

We Are Here
No Border Network
Alignment for Dignity

Do you have questions, remarks, suggestions?
Mail to: freedomnotfrontexnl@gmail.com

We are looking to broaden the coalition. Please join!
mail to: freedomnotfrontexnl@gmail.com
subject ‘join’

If you already want to sign up for the ride May 18 or during the week of action,
mail to: freedomnotfrontexnl@gmail.com
subject ‘sign up’

Persbericht: Vluchtelingenstrijd in Nederland gaat de grens over


April 14, 2014

ENGLISH TRANSLATION

Vanaf 18 mei vindt er een internationaal grensoverschrijdend protest van vluchtelingen en supporters in Europa plaats, de March 2 Freedom. Het startmoment is niet willekeurig gekozen. Het is vlak voor de Europese parlementsverkiezingen. Het protest sluit af met een actieweek in Brussel van 20 t/m 28 juni, waar op 26 en 27 juni een Europese migratietop plaatsvindt.
Aan het protest doen ook vluchtelingen en supporters uit Nederland mee.

Freedom, not Frontex!

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Net als in andere Europese landen strijden vluchtelingen voor hun rechten in Nederland. Waar de lidstaten van EU gezamelijk de migratie bestrijden door de buitengrenzen te fortificeren, slaan vluchtelingen de handen ineen en maken zichzelf en hun onleefbare situatie zichtbaar.

Om de deelname uit Nederland vorm te geven is Freedom Not Frontex NL opgericht. Freedom Not Frontex NL roept mensen uit heel Nederland, vluchtelingen én sympathisanten, op om mee te doen en organiseert daarvoor tweemaal een busreis. Een ieder wordt uitgenodigd om geheel of gedeeltelijk groepsgewijs of individueel deel te nemen aan de mars en de actieweek. Informatie over de gehele mars is te vinden op de internationale website http://freedomnotfrontex.noblogs.org/. Informatie over de deelname uit Nederland staat op de website http://freedomnotfrontex.nl/.

Deelname uit Nederland

De eerste maal zal zijn op 18 mei. Dan wordt gezamelijk vanuit nog nader te bepalen opstapplaatsen in Nederland naar de Duitse grensplaats Kehl gereist. Van daaruit wordt die dag naar Strasbourg gelopen. Hierbij wordt de grensovergang Duitsland – Frankrijk openlijk gepasseerd, met of zonder papieren en met of zonder toestemming vooraf. In Strasbourg vindt die dag een muziekconcert plaats. De delegatie uit Nederland blijft tot de volgende dag in Strasbourg, om zodoende deel te nemen aan acties in Strasbourg op 19 mei.

De tweede maal gaan we voor de actieweek naar Brussel. Vertrek op 20 juni. We verwelkomen de mensen die de hele mars hebben gelopen en nemen deel aan de eerste demonstratie in Brussel. In de week staan diverse bijeenkomsten, demonstraties en acties op het programma.

Wat willen de vluchtelingen?

Vrijheid van beweging en vestiging voor alle vluchtelingen
Stop de valstrik van het Dublin akkoord en het gedwongen verblijf in kampen overal in Europa Permanente verblijfsvergunningen zonder voorwaarden (niet afhankelijk van arbeidscontracten of individuele vervolging)
Stop het gevangen zetten en deporteren van migranten
Dezelfde arbeidsomstandigheden voor iedereen
Dezelfde politieke, sociale en culturele rechten voor iedereen: het recht om te werken en te studeren
Stop het Europese imperialistische beleid: een einde aan vrije handelsverdragen en NAVO oorlogen
Afschaffing van Frontex, Eurosur en ander anti-migratie beleid en maatregelen

De stem van vluchtelingen wordt krachtiger en hun roep luider: Freedom, not Frontex!

Freedom Not Frontex NL

Wilt u op de hoogte blijven en hieraan aandacht besteden, bel ons dan of mail, volg ons op twitter, of bezoek de website of de facebook page.

Website: http://freedomnotfrontex.nl/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Freedom-Not-Frontex-NL/224807794382817
Twitter: https://twitter.com/NotFrontexNL
E-mail: freedomnotfrontexnl@gmail.com

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[ENGLISH TRANSLATION]

Press release: Refugee struggle in the Netherlands is going to cross the border

As of May 18 an international border crossing protest of refugees and supporters will take place in Europe, the March 2 Freedom. The starting moment is not arbitrary. It is shortly before the European Elections. The protest concludes with an action week in Brussels from June 20 – 28, where there will be a Migration Summit June 26 / 27.
Refugees and supporters from the Netherlands are joining the protest.

Freedom, not Frontex!

Just as in other European countries refugees in the Netherlands are fighting for their rights. As the member states of the EU fight migration together in order to fortify their outer borders, refugees
join hands and makes themselves and their unlivable conditions visible.

In order to shape the participation from the Netherlands, Freedom Not Frontex NL has been set up. Freedom Not Frontex NL call for people from the Netherlands, refugees and sympathizers, to join in and organizes a bus tour twice. Everyone is invited to join the march and the action week in part or in full, with a group or individually. Information about the whole march can be found on the international website http://freedomnotfrontex.noblogs.org/. Information about participation from The Netherlands can be found on the website http://freedomnotfrontex.nl/.

Participation from the Netherlands

The first time will be May 18. Then we will travel to Kehl from yet to set boarding places in the Netherlands. From there we will join the walk to Strasbourg. During this, the border Germany – France will be crossed openly, with of without papers and with or without permission ahead of time. In Strasbourg there will be a music concert that day.The delegation from the Netherlands will stay in Strasbourg until the following day, to take part in actions in Strasbourg May 19.

The second time we go to Brussels for the action week. We leave June 20. We welcome the people who walked the whole march and take part in the first demonstration in Brussels. During the week there will be a variety of gatherings, demonstrations and actions.

What do the refugees want?

Freedom of movement and of residence for all asylum seekers
Stop the Dublin trap and the obligatory residence in Lagers throughout Europe
Permanent documents without criteria (not depending on working contracts or individual state prosecution)
Stop the imprisonment and deportation of migrants
Same working conditions for all
Same political, social and cultural rights for all: right to study and to work
Stop the European imperialist policies: no more free trade treaties and NATOwars
Abolish Frontex, Eurosur and other anti-migration policies and measures

The voice of refugees becomes more powerful and their call louder: Freedom, not Frontex!

Freedom Not Frontex NL

If you wish to stay informed and to pay attention to this, call us or mail, follow us on twitter, or visit the website or the facebook page.

Website: http://freedomnotfrontex.nl/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Freedom-Not-Frontex-NL/224807794382817
Twitter: https://twitter.com/NotFrontexNL
E-mail: freedomnotfrontexnl@gmail.com

The WFTU supports the International Migrants Caravan


April 7, 2014

wftulogoen

WORLD FEDERATION OF TRADE UNIONS
Class oriented – uniting – democratic – modern – independent – internationalist!

Athens, Greece – February 21th, 2014

The WFTU supports the International Migrants Caravan The WFTU representing more than 86 million workers in 126 countries around the world expresses its support to the initiative for an International Migrants Caravan supported by its affiliate the USB of Italy to protest against the anti-people’s imperialist policy of the European Union, its Dublin Regulation and the FRONTEX policy.

Overall, the absolute domination of imperialism, the European governments, the World Bank and the IMF have, caused major waves of immigration from Africa and Asia over a long period of time, either by supporting imperialist wars or by plundering the natural resources of the continents and keeping their economies and governments captive in order to maintain their domination and profiting, thus generating poverty, inciting armed conflicts and supporting undemocratic regimes.

Approximately 200 million people are expatriates either permanently or periodically looking for work, fighting for their survivals or striving for an asylum and the current crisis has intensified this reality.

At the same time, Europe has become a “walled fortress”, with a “police-like” and “securitizing” attitude towards immigrants, instead of adopting much needed inclusion and solidarity policies. Regulations such as the Bolkestein Agreement, the Dublin I and II and others are a shame for any society, causing the aggressive and violent treatment towards migrant workers and asylum-seekers.

The World Federation of Trade Unions with the authority of its internationalist position can only answer that workers are workers, whether they live in the country where they were born and come from or not, they should have the same labor and social rights as all other workers in the country. Collective agreements should be respected for each worker. With this demand immigrants will not be used as a battering ram to employment gains of the
labor movement, nor will they become victims of employers.

We call the working class and the people of Europe to jointly struggle for the abolition of all anti-immigrant law and regulations, for the granting of legal status to all migrants and refugees, for equal rights for all migrant and native workers. For the end of the EU Regulation “Dublin II”. For the granting of traveling documents to all migrants and refugees who want to safely travel to their countries of destination. For immediate granting of asylum to all victims of imperialist wars and invasions.

THE SECRETARIAT
40, ZAN MOREAS STREET, ATHENS 11745 GREECE
TEL. (+30) 2109214417, (+30) 2109236700, FAX (+30) 210 9214517
www.wftucentral.org E-MAILS : info@wftucentral.org, international@wftucentral.org

Download: WFTU Statement Migrants Caravan

We Are Here / March presentation in Utrecht


April 3, 2014

Yesterday We Are Here was invited to present themselves at an amazing evening organised by Critical Students Utrecht. They screened the film ‘The Land Between’ with a very interesting discussion with the filmmaker David (don’t forget this takes place today at 16:00 in Vluchthaven as well!!).

we-are-here-presentation-utrecht3 we-are-here-presentation-utrecht2 we-are-here-presentation-utrecht4

Afterwards Mouthena presented We Are Here, the group, the history and the aims. People were very interested. Also together with No Border Network, the international Campaign (with a march to and action in Brussels in May/June) was presented.

There were many people present, during the film screening, the discussion and afterwards informally exchanging ideas. There were very interested reactions, a lot of interaction and several people are coming to visit, want to support We Are Here or will be involved in the international campaign. We also met people active around refugees out of procedure in Utrecht, see also www.toevluchtutrecht.nl/petitie.

Time scedule for the March 2 Freedom from Strassbourg to Brussels


April 1, 2014

(provisional and set during the international meeting in Brx March 29 and 30, so changes are still possible)

comingsoon-march2freedom-banner

May 18: the first bordercrossing from Kehl to Strassbourg. In Strassbourg there will be a music concert.
May 19: a press conference in Strassbourg, actieons at the institutions of the EU (for example Schengen info system) and official announcement that the march will start the next day.
May 20: start of March 2 Freedom 2014
May 21: Marmoutier (fr)
May 22: Phalsbourg (fr)
May 23: Drulingen (fr)
May 24: Keskastel (fr)
May 25: Saargemund (fr)
May 25 or May 26: 2e bordercrossing to Saarbrucken
May 27: actions in Saarbrucken (dld)
May 28: Volkungen (dld)
May 29: Dillingen (dld)
May 30: Merzig (dld)
May 31: Perl (dld)
June 1: 2e bordercrossing naar Schengen (L)
June 2: Frisane (L)
June 3: Luxenburg (L)
June 4: acties in Luxenburg
June 5: Steinfort (L)
June 6: 3e bordercrossing Heinsch-Arlon (L)
June 7: Leglise (B)
June 8: Libramont-Chevigny (B)
June 9: Libin (B)
June 10:
June 11: Wellin (B)
June 12: Beauraing (B)
June 13: wear of Hastire (petit bois) (B)
June 14: Mettet (B)
June 15: Charlerloi (B)
June 16: rest and action
June 17: Pont a Celles (B)
June 18: Nivelles (B)
June 19: St Genius-Rode (B)
June 20: arrival in Brx demonstration and press conference
June 21: workshops for the summit
June 22: visit detioncentre Steenokkerzeel
June 23: lobby-protest-tour
June 24: European Parlement wiht Europese Raad meet European ministers of intregration
June 25:
June 26: start of the summit in Brx, call out for large international demonstration
June 27: 2e dag van de Summit
June 28: evaluation
June 29: end of march

We zijn mobiel


March 25, 2014

Freedomnotfrontex.nl is per vandaag ook mobiel te bereiken!

Website nadert voltooiing


March 21, 2014

Na enkele dagen hard doorstampen heeft Freedom not Frontex de website af. De lelijke tijdelijke website kan nu vervangen worden door dit handgemaakte ontwerp. Hadsjee! En nu naar Brussel.

Persbericht: Aanstaande week lancering Freedomnotfrontex.nl


Zaterdag 15 Maart 2014 hebben de Vluchtgroep WijZijnHier, Alignment for Dignity, en NoBorderNetwerkNederland op een bijeenkomst besloten dat zij onder de naam Freedomnotfrontex.nl in Nederland vluchtelingen, sympathisanten en activisten zullen gaan mobiliseren voor de Mars voor Vrijheid van Straatsburg naar Brussel in mei-juni 2014. Deze mobilisatie zullen zij gecoordineerd gaan aanvatten middels een Twitteraccount, Facebookpagina en een eigen website onder dezelfde naam: Freedomnotfrontex.nl

De Freedomnotfrontex March is een Internationale Mars startende van Duitsland op 18 mei naar Frankrijk en Luxemburg om in Belgie te Brussel te arriveren op 21 juni. De Mars zal eindigen in Brussel waar men de tenten op zal zetten om een volle actieweek (21-28 juni) rond de European Council Summit (26-27 juni) de Internationale vluchtelingenstrijd kracht bij te zetten.

Opzet van het initiatief is de Nederlandse vluchtelingenbeweging in haar volle breedte te mobiliseren mee te doen aan zowel de start van deze Europese grenzen overschrijdende Mars op 18 mei alswel aan de slotweek in Brussel. Om zo vanuit Nederland bij te dragen aan het doorbreken van Fortress Europe, de doctrine van Schengen en Dublin, oftewel de Verdeel en Heers in de Europese vluchtelingenstrijd.

De vluchtelingen en ondersteuners gaan voor een doorbraak richting vrijheid van beweging van personen binnen en over de grenzen van Europa zoals dat nu nog slechts voor goederen geldt. Dat is in het belang van iedere Europeaan.

Meer informatie volgt over een week als de website Freedomnotfrontex.nl gelanceerd zal worden.

De eisen van de Mars zijn als volgt geformuleerd:
Vrijheid van beweging en vestiging voor iedereen.
Stopzetting van het gevangenzetten van migranten en vluchtelingen (afschaffen van detentiecentra),
Afschaffing van de Dublin akkoorden,
afschaffing van de militaristische Frontex,
afschaffing van het geld verslindende Eurosu en
vernietiging van alle vingerafdrukken.


- Donaties / Donations
- Data / Dates
- Flyers & posters
- Vervoer / transportation

march-for-freedom

Donaties

We hebben veel geld nodig voor vervoer van de vluchtelingen naar de grensoverschrijdende actie en de week in Brussel. Ook voor goede begeleiding door legal teams en medics, voor actiematerialen en mobilisatieflyers maken we kosten. We rekenen daarbij op jouw bijdrage om dit te verwezenlijken! Alle donaties, groot of klein, zijn welkom en kunnen naar IBAN: NL75 INGB 0004 2530 90. Op naam van: Ithaka, Utrecht. Onder vermelding van: Freedom Not Frontex NL Alvast heel erg bedankt!

Donations

We need a lot of money for travel expenses for the refugees to the border crossing action and the week in Brussels. Also for guidance by legal teams and medics, for action materials and mobilization flyers costs are being made. We are counting on your contribution to realize all of this! All donations, large or small, are welcome and can be transferred to IBAN: NL75 INGB 0004 2530 90. In the name of: Ithaka, Utrecht. Subject: Freedom Not Frontex NL. Thank you very much!

march-for-freedom

Data / Dates (Wijzigingen voorbehouden / subject to change)

May 18:
naar Kehl om deel te nemen aan de grensoversteek naar Strasbourg waar een muziek concert zal zijn
to Kehl to join the border crossing to Strasbourg where a music concert will take place
May 19:
In Strasbourg voor acties en de persconferentie / terug naar Nederland
In Strasbourg for actions and the press conference that day / return to The Netherlands

June 20:
naar Brussel voor de actieweek, waar de mars arriveert, om deel te nemen aan de demonstratie
to Brussels for the actionweek, where the march arrives this day, to join the demonstration
June 20 – 28:
verblijven in Brussel voor de actieweek
stay in Brussels for the action week
June 28:
terug naar Nederland
return to The Netherlands

march-for-freedom

Posters & flyers

Half April there will be flyers and posters to spread

march-for-freedom

Vervoer / transportation

We zullen gezamelijk vervoer per bus regelen, zodra tijden en opstapplaatsen bekend zijn lees je dat hier. Daarnaast vragen we of mensen vervoersmiddelen kunnen aanbieden, hetzij voor de reis naar Kehl / Brussel, hetzij om mensen naar de opstapplaatsen te brengen. Met name vluchtelingen hebben vaak geen geld voor bus of trein. Mail ons o.v.v. ‘vervoer’ als je vervoer kunt aanbieden. Bij voorbaat dank!

We shall arrange for collective transportation by bus, as soon as times and boarding places are set you can read it here. Aside of that, we ask if people can offer transportation, either for the journey to Kehl / Brussels, or to help take people to the boarding places. In particular refugees often have no money for bus or train. Mail us, subject ‘transport’ if you can offer transportation. Thank you very much!

Vindt ons op Facebook en Twitter of stuur een bericht

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Email


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Achtergronden

Je vindt hier achtergrondartikelen getiteld:

  • Interview about the current situation and the future of We Are Here
  • Deadly rampart
  • ZIJ ZIJN HIER – Documentaire / THEY ARE HERE – Documentary
  • Map of dead people caused by European border and migration policy
  • Selling border militarization as a humanitarian effort
  • The Enemy: Europe is at war against a imaginary enemy

Interview about the current situation and the future of We Are Here


Wij Zijn Hier, April 6, 2014

Interview about the current situation and the future of We Are Here

Today I went with El Mouthena to the Surinameplein to meet the Iraqi refugees who are demonstrating in front of the office of Vluchtelingenwerk to ask for their human rights. We did not find them. In stead we watched the beautiful flowers in the park. And I took the opportunity to do an interview.

we are here
El Mouthena is one of the refugees of We Are Here and active since the first location in the garden of the Diaconie, close to the Waterlooplein. In the tent camp in Osdorp he started to organize demonstrations with refugees and supporters.

‘You are now doing your protest for almost two years. How do you see the situation of We Are Here?’
We still have to fight the same fight. We slept in tents, in a very cold church and every time we had to move from place to place. We are doing this protest to show the people our situation. We are fighting for our human rights. We want a normal life. Nothing changed – we have to continue this fight.

‘Do people still have the power to continue this protest?’
Of course. We have no choice. We cannot go back to our countries and because of the Dublin agreements we also cannot go to another European country. So we have to fight. I stay active, but for many people it is also difficult. People become depressed. Some people start to drink to forget their problems.

‘How is the health situation of the group?’
It is very difficult. Many people are sick. Especially the situation in the Vluchtgarage is not healthy. There are no showers and only very few toilets that get blocked easily. We don’t have washing machines. We are very very happy with and grateful for the help we get from the neighborhood, but it is not easy. If you live with so many people in this hard conditions, it is not healthy.

‘Is there enough place for everybody?’
Actually – no. The ‘gemeente’ decides on who can go to the old prison at the Havenstraat. Only very few people can enter there. The Vluchtgarage is over-full. Every day people get at our door, but we cannot offer them a place. There is not enough food, electricity and facilities. People sleep with ten persons in a room. Also some sick people are now sleeping in the Hebron church in Amsterdam. They could stay there for many months, but they have to leave soon. There is still not a solution for these people. In the Vluchtgarage there is no place and it is also really not a good place for sick people. This gives us a lot of stress. Where should our brothers go??

‘Do you think these sick people will be on the street?’
I don’t know. I don’t know what will happen. But I know it is difficult. Maybe the ‘gemeente’ will do something for them. Maybe the ‘GGD’. I don’t know, but I don’t really believe it. We talk a lot to the major of Amsterdam, but I don’t believe he will really help us. We are afraid that he will only help us when we return to our country. But many of us tried that already and it does not work. Or people cannot go back, because their life will be in danger. We come here to ask for asylum, because we are not safe in our country.

‘Do people still see a future?’
Many people loose hope. But I will never loose hope. I don’t have a choice. I need to fight for my own life and of all the refugees. We need human rights. Not only food and shelter. We want to start a life. We are people. We want to work, we want to study, we want to party, we want to start a family. All of us used to have dreams. We are strong people. We can do a lot for the country and of course for Amsterdam. We met so many great people. We want to do something back.

‘How do you see the future?’
We are demonstrating almost two years now. I think we were successful in showing people our situation and in building a big network of refugees and supporters that became friends and work together for human rights. We have to look for new strategies now. For example we have to build a network in Europe. We will go to Brussels to ask for our human rights. Our problem is a European problem. We have to work all together. Also we need to organize ourselves better, work on actions, invite different people and groups, make the network even stronger. Yeah. I will work for that.

Deadly rampart


The newly installed European Border Surveillance System EUROSUR links the information from national authorities. The equipment concerns the defense industry. Objective: To complete defense of “illegal” migration

A translation of the original German article “Tödlicher Festungswall” written by Matthias Monroy

serveImage Solemn meeting before barbed wire: FRONTEX officials dedicate on 6 February 2012 at the Greek-Turkish border security fencing. Photo: EPA / NIKOS Arvanitidis

After five years of preparation, the European Union launched its Border Surveillance System EUROSUR (European border surveillance system) in December 2013. In a first step, the “national control centers” of the 19 participating countries were interlinked. This includes all Mediterranean countries as well as states with an eastern border. Also Norway, as an associate in the Schengen treaty countries, is taking part. In a year, all other EU members will follow, plus Iceland, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. The German partner of EUROSUR is the Federal Police headquarters in Potsdam. However, the actual work is done by the Directorate Bad Bramstedt in Schleswig-Holstein, which operates a maritime situation center in Cuxhaven. The German Federal Police will be permanently connected to EUROSUR in December 2014.

A necessary bylaw for the launch of the platform had been concluded by the EU Parliament without much discussion. All those who had drowned last October before Lampedusa served as justification for the new surveillance. Officially EUROSUR is supposed to uncover cross-border crime, including drug trafficking or smuggling. But priority is given to controlling unwanted migration. If migrants are detected as early as possible, so the calculation, they will not even reach international waters or territories of EU member states in which asylum may be requested.

All the information of the “National Control Centers” converge at the EU border agency FRONTEX. At the headquarters in Warsaw data is processed from radar stations, the aerial reconnaissance and position data from vessel monitoring systems. Meanwhile, the EU Commission has revealed technical details concerning the exchanged information. For example, each participant may decide for himself which of his data will processed: possibilities are police or military messages. There is also talk of “intelligence reports”, quasi-secret service reports. In order to facilitate their transfer, individual countries may conclude cooperation agreements. So Greece could at any time be informed about what is going on the Spanish coasts, or whether Italy is again arguing with Malta about the rescue of a shipwreck. According to the EU Commission’s statement, EUROSUR pursues an “information-based approach” (“intelligence-driven approach”). What this means is that all the information will also be processed into statistics, to serve as a basis for “risk analysis”. This way FRONTEX aims to predict flows of refugees.

Satellites and drones

By 2020, the costs for the establishment, upgrading and maintenance of the “National control centers” as well as the central headquarters of EUROSUR in Warsaw, will figure in the amount of 338.7 million Euros, the Commission estimates. However, the amount could easily double if the preparations and research are added to the technical implementation.

One of the main sources of information of EUROSUR are satellites images, supplied by the European Union Satellite Centre (EUSC). They are obtained by means of optical and radar-based satellites. Optical systems are high-resolution, but can only be used during the day and in good weather. Radar satellites, however, can provide images independently of weather and time of day, but must be made legible via computerization. The EU had launched its own satellite program, earlier intended for the monitoring of “Environment and Security” which now bears the name “Copernicus”. At least six Earth observation satellites will be shot into space for this. However, FRONTEX also additionally buys commercial satellite reconnaissance images, operated by European arms companies. In short, EADS thus earns with every risk analysis of the EU’s border agency FRONTEX that is based on satellites.

Simultaneously, the European Commission funds numerous research programs in order to optimize the evaluation of the data. At an early stage, FRONTEX wants to identify whether North African boats put out to sea towards the EU. Here, programs that work like motion sensors are expected to help: software detects “suspicious” vessel movements, as in those with small-size, slow-paced or taking unusual routes. Many defense companies and start-up companies from EU member states are involved in this type of research. Well-received German partners are subsidiaries of EADS (now renamed Airbus), but also Rheinmetall Defence Electronics or ATLAS from Bremen. However, these – mostly state – air and space institutes function as interfaces. In this way the German Aerospace Center (DLR) is involved in almost all relevant EU research and brings the insights into national programs. A particular cluster here is the Hanseatic city of Bremen, where many relevant companies, government and private research institutes and the university are located.

The German companies European Space Imaging and GAF AG conduct research on the use of satellite reconnaissance against unwanted migration. Other well-liked partners include the arms companies Lürssen, the security and defense service provide IABG or Thales Germany. The company Diehl from the Bodensee and Rheinmetall Group located in Bremen make available their military competence for the EU border monitoring. Optical systems are also often contributed by Carl Zeiss Optronics. The company, which now belongs to EADS, had taken over the lead on a project on seaward surveillance. The Fraunhofer Institute for High Frequency Physics and Radar Techniques is developing a radar for moving targets, which is also advertised for border protection. The Fraunhofer Institute of Optronics, System Technologies and Image Exploitation is engaging in similar research.

At the heart of the research lies the absence of satellite-based surveillance and the border police use of unarmed long-range drones, as they have hitherto only been used by the military. Under German participation, the suitability of the Israeli “Heron” drone is being tested in Spain. In another endeavor, the EU promotes flight tests with a U.S. made “Predator” drone over the Mediterranean. Responsible are the Spanish Coast Guard and the Italian military. Soon the “Predator” will be tested for its effectiveness in real FRONTEX task missions. Another EU research project had hundreds of other drones tested and explored where these could be used later to their suitability for border surveillance. Smaller drones could therefore launch from coast guard ships, whereas surveillance flights with larger systems take place outside the European territory. They do so, however, not to rescue the shipwrecked: In project descriptions, only the fight against “illegal migration” and “smuggling” are mentioned. Other possible areas are also mentioned: Accordingly, the sea between Libya, Tunisia and Lampedusa could be monitored by drones, as well as the Street of Gibraltar and the land border between Poland and Ukraine.

Virtual Borders

serveImage2 With the help of EUROSUR this form of immigration will soon be a thing of the past: migrants from Africa who on the 7th of February 2014 reached the Sicilian coast in a boat. Photo: REUTERS / Antonio Parrinello

The upgrading of maritime and land borders with EUROSUR complements previously existing mechanisms in the prevention of unwanted migration. The fingerprints of all VISA applicants are stored in the new EU visa database VIS, with an annual expectancy of around 20 million records. The fingerprint data collection EURODAC was initiated to detect multiple applications for asylum, it processes about 1.7 million entries per year. All migrants whose residence permits have expired and who therefore are required to leave, are stored in the Schengen Information System (SIS). According to the information service EU Observer, these are around 900,000 people per year.

Now, a new virtual boundary is on the horizon: Due to pressure from the Netherlands, Great Britain and Germany, the EU in the future wants to take all travelers fingerprints and save them in a database . This “entry-exit system” is modeled after a similar U.S. data collection effort and apparently allows to determine at any time the number of migrants who are obliged to leave. Although their entry and exit is registered in most member states already, the systems however are not integrated. So it can not be determined whether a person requiring a visa, entered through Spain and left again through Poland. Fingerprint scanners are now supposed to be acquired by all border checkpoints – a huge investment that is likely to be worthwhile, especially for manufacturers of biometric systems, such as the Federal Printing Office.

Formally unimpeded movement is permitted, at least within the EU: in 1995, all member states signed the Schengen Agreement, which stipulates that internal borders may be crossed without control. Details are defined in the Schengen Borders Code. The origin of the travelers for instance may not play a role. Nevertheless, the original Schengen policy has been limited by a series of “compensatory measures”. The border police may conduct gratuitous controls within a threshold radius of 30 kilometers from the border. These are supposed to be random, but often People of Color are targeted and measures extend far further inland. Several times a year, operations take place in which thousands of civil servants in the EU simultaneously control persons and vehicles at traffic junctions.

Closed to the outside, Schengen inside

For the control of the external borders, the so-called Schengen entails a “uniform monitoring standard”. This is for any country that wants to join the EU perspective mandatory. Whether the criteria are met, decides the Council of the European Union. However, long before their EU-accession, new member states already receive the means for changing their legislation to modernize police infrastructure and equipment for border surveillance. Since last summer, Croatia belongs to the European Union, but is still not a full member of the Schengen area. The controls at the internal borders, those with surrounding EU member states, are maintained. This also applies to Bulgaria and Romania, which have now been subjected to harsh control methods: In a periodic progress report, the European Commission sets up measures that the two countries in the following year have to execute.

In the case of Slovakia’s accession in 2007, comparatively little work was needed to meet at least the border police requirements: Its external border with Ukraine only measures 98 km with five transitions, that back then could well be monitored with 800 officers on 58 motorcycles, 74 off-road vehicles and 17 motor scooters. 250 fixed and 160 mobile cameras provide the required information in a control center, all events are displayed on an interactive map. In January, a high-profile FRONTEX delegation had inspected the security of the border and certified it a high level of professionalism. Also present was the German Chairman of the Board, Ralf Göbel, who is regarded as the driving force of the Agency.

Significantly, higher investments were necessary as a result of the accession of Romania. The external border length to non-EU countries totals 3147 km here. For a billion Euros the government bought a border surveillance system from EADS. Something the people in Romania reluctantly remember: Whereas the fighting of corruption is admonished in every progress report to the Schengen accession, the deal with EADS was made without prior invitation for tendering, which domestically as well as from the side of European Union was met with harsh criticism. This hardly impressed the arms company.

Also, the EU accession of Bulgaria made the cash tills of European defense companies ring: The Bremen-based company ATLAS had sold the government a monitoring system for the 350-kilometer-long coastline. Twelve fixed platforms now control the “blue border” on the Black Sea and on the Danube. The responsible Ministry of the Interior operates new patrol boats, a surface radar, all-encompassing video surveillance and the integration of vessel monitoring systems. Two nearby control centers process the incoming information, which is connected to the national situation center of the navy, located near the Black Sea coastal town of Burgas. The maritime situation picture is again forwarded to Sofia. There is also data converge from the surveillance of land borders, which are equipped with thermal imaging cameras, night vision equipment and all-terrain vehicles. Although the Parliament voted against it, Bulgaria is reinforcing the country’s border with Turkey with an approximately 30 kilometer fence.

The pre-accession to EU standards is carried out in so-called twinning projects, in which another Member State acts as a kind of development worker. In the case of Bulgaria, but also of Croatia and Romania, the German Ministry of Interior had the task to make the country fit for Schengen. In order to upgrade the “green” and “blue” borders in the new Member States, the EU launched the PHARE program. Part of its objectives includes the procurement of equipment as well as training or the expansion of cooperation with neighboring countries. Preventing unwanted migration and border police cooperation are always the focal point. Also, Serbia, the Republic of Macedonia and Turkey are already being promoted as a potential EU candidate on “twinning” projects. If you, in addition, add other similar EU programs to PHARE, you quickly have a hefty sum for the upgrading of the new EU Member States. A list for Croatia shows that even the establishment and management of databases and police investigation systems, the acquisition of police dogs and equipment, as well as training are facilitated with dozens of millions of Euros. Even IT equipment for the procurement of IMSI catchers for locating mobile phones is paid for.

EADS has published on the website of its subsidiary Cassidian a step-by-step guide for the buying of a border surveillance system. Governments are asked to first define requirements and then to create a customized system. “Special skills” can be purchased, as in monitoring with drones or helicopters. EADS also offers control centers, radio systems or the integration of satellite reconnaissance. This way the corporation markets its originally tax subsidized capabilities for espionage from space. In 2008, the arms company received its thus far biggest contract in the industry: For an estimated two billion Euros, the group erected a highly advanced monitoring platform in Saudi Arabia, that also involves German drones. More than 100 purchased patrol vessels also come from Germany; there is talk of further investments in the amount of 1.5 billion Euros.

EADS advises countries to seek cooperation with neighboring countries already in the beginning phase of the modernization of border facilities, since this would bring down costs. In this way, according to EADS, the best supplier will be found who can then negotiate with subcontractors. Bulgaria borders, among others, with Romania, that as described above, began to build up a surveillance system for maritime and land borders a few years earlier. There, EADS probably got along well with the contractor ATLAS: Just before completion EADS announced the merging, since 2011 both companies appear under the name Signalis. The newly formed Monitoring Group is apparently popular: Signalis equipped the 6000 km long coast of France and the 2300 km long coastline of Germany with corresponding systems. Other customers include, in addition to Spain, the new EU member states Latvia and Lithuania, but also China, South Korea, Malaysia and India.

More deaths to be expected

Even countries outside the EU should be part of EUROSUR, the first was Libya: In summer 2012, the government made an official declaration of intent to the EU. Of interest is the connection of two control centers in Tripoli and Benghazi to a network of all bordering on the Mediterranean. This platform with the cute name “Mediterranean seahorse” is currently being built by Spain, the connected infrastructure is also part of EUROSUR. The EU has also applied to Tunisia, Egypt and Algeria corresponding pressure – apparently successfully. According to media reports, Tunisia wants to participate in the joint monitoring of the Mediterranean from 2014. While the Libyan border facilities will be modernized by the Italian SELEX group, no order has been issued yet for Tunisia.

In an unprecedented fashion, the EU’s external borders are being upgraded for migration defense. European defense companies greatly profit from it. Incidents like the agonizing drowning of hundreds of migrants off the coast of Italy are used by EU interior ministers to initiate new measures. The civil-military foreign service even made the proposal to in the future use military equipment of EU and NATO Member States for the control of migration in the Mediterranean.

However, the EU border policies will only lead to more deaths, because the routes chosen by refugees will become increasingly risky. This has also been recognized by the border agency FRONTEX, which now predicts that more migrants will choose the land route via the Spanish enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla. These are still secured with a razor wire, which has caused many fatalities. Again, the trace leads to Germany: The manufacturer of the border fortifications, the company European Security Fence, has an office in Berlin, not far from the EU Commission offices on Pariser Platz.

Matthias Monroy writes for the journal Civil Rights & Police/CILIP and since 2009 is a member of scientific staff of MdB Andrej Hunko.

ZIJ ZIJN HIER – Documentaire / THEY ARE HERE – Documentary


Een korte documentaire over het leven van vluchtelingen in de vluchtgarage in de Nederlandse hoofdstad, Amsterdam. Over hoe mensenrechten, ook in Nederland, maar relatief zijn.
Meer informatie over Wij Zijn Hier: www.wijzijnhier.org

A short documentary about the life of refugees in the refugee garage in the Dutch capital, Amsterdam. About how human rights, also in The Netherlands, are only relative.
More information about We Are Here: www.wijzijnhier.org

Map of dead people caused by European border and migration policy


Listed 1993 – 2009

Click on the image for enlargement.

Impression

Deaths in the Netherlands, as far as we know, can be found on http://www.vrijheidvanbeweging.nl. This list is for sure incomplete. Inform the list if you know of more.

Selling border militarization as a humanitarian effort


source: campagne tegen wapenhandel

Just one week after the dramatic events off the coast of Lampedusa, where more than 300 refugees drowned when their boat sank, the European Parliament approved the operating rules for Eurosur, the European border surveillance system. Eurosur provides in the exchange of real time images and data between EU member states and the EU border agency Frontex, gathered through surveillance of the Mediterranean using UAVs (‘drones’), ships and satellites.

Eurosur is presented as a project aimed at rescueing migrants. In reality, it’s primarily task is stopping migrants from entering the European Union. Once again, the military industry, involved in Eurosur through Research & Development-projects, finds profit opportunities in the walls of Fortress Europe.

Eurosur-19a508f2f2536847

The tragedy at Lampedusa has been far from the only deadly result of the militarization of the Mediterranean borders. Over the course of the last twenty years, more than 17000 persons died attempting to reach Europe. On Monday 30 September, thirteen migrants drowned near Sicily.

While these recent tragedies once again put the spotlight on the horrific consequences of the European migration policies, the reaction from the EU and European governments has been more than disappointing, if not inadequate. The European Commission used the opportunity to push EU countries to vastly increase the resources of Frontex, the EU border control agency. The commission has been talking about expanding Frontex for at least three years, but now EU home affairs ministers voiced support.

Dutch State Secretary for Security and Justice Teeven said that the Netherlands are willing to put more ships, planes and personnel at the disposal of Frontex, to combat illegal immigration from North Africa to Europe. Already the Netherlands is participating with ships and personnel in several Frontex operations and has some fifty border guards available for rapid border intervention teams.

Experts, human rights organisations such as Amnesty International and Green MEPs warn that a further militarization of the borders will only increase the dependency on human trafficking and will result in more deaths. Hein de Haas, co-director of the International Migration Institute (IMI) at Oxford University, wrote that “it is the very tightening-up of border controls that forces migrants to take dangerous routes and makes them increasingly dependent on human traffickers to get across the border.” He called it “the real scandal” that “governments and migration agencies such as Frontex shamelessly abuse tragedies such as the disaster off the coast of Lampedusa to invest even more money in “the fight against illegal migration”.

While migrants die, the military industry sees a profit opportunity. Apart from direct sales of equipment for border security, arms producers have seen the financing of a lot of research projects to develop new products for border security, through the European 7th Framework Programme for Research and Development. In December the successor of this program, ‘Horizon 2020′ will be launched, again with a budget line for security.

The European Commission stated that “Eurosur is conceived as a process which will never stop, which will always be further improved.” So, Eurosur and Frontex will remain sources of profit for the military and security industry. The industry which lobbied for the Eurosur-projectis now pushing the European Commission to allow private security companies access to maritime border surveillance data so that they can sell and use it, thereby proving once again that turning human suffering into profit opportunities is at the core of their business.

[MA, 11 October 2013]

The Enemy: Europe is at war against a imaginary enemy


By Frontexit. Watch the film here in HD.