facebook feed fist header movement-text refugee-movement-text twitter youtube
Statements

“Let them die, this is a good deterrence”

GENEVA (30 October 2014) – Allowing people to die at Europe’s borders just because of their administrative status is a complete disregard for the value of human life, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants, François Crépeau, said today urging the British authorities to reconsider its decision not support search and rescue operations in the Mediterranean.

The United Kingdom Government announced earlier this week they will not support any future search and rescue operations to prevent migrants and refugees drowning in the Mediterranean, stating that such operations can encourage more people to attempt the dangerous sea crossing to enter Europe.

Governments that do not support the search and rescue efforts have reduced themselves to the same level as the smugglers,” the human rights expert stressed. “They are preying on the precariousness of the migrants and asylum seekers, robbing them of their dignity and playing with their lives.”

Migrants are human beings and just like the rest of us they too have rights. They too have the right to live and thrive,” Mr. Crépeau said. “To bank on the rise in the number of dead migrants to act as deterrence for future migrants and asylum seekers is appalling. It’s like saying, let them die because this is a good deterrence.”

The UN estimates that more than 130,000 migrants and asylum seekers have arrived in Europe by sea so far this year, compared with 80,000 last year, and that over 800 people have died in the Mediterranean so far this year. Despite good initiatives like the increase in search and rescue operations which have saved many lives, the emphasis remains on restricting the entry of migrants rather than on creating new legal channels for migration.

Sealing international borders is impossible, and migrants will continue arriving despite all efforts to stop them, at a terrible cost in lives and suffering,” the Special Rapporteur said reiterating his message on border management, stated in an Open Letter* to the EU published last month.

If Europe is to witness a significant reduction of human suffering at borders, it must bank not on strict closure, but on regulated openness and mobility; otherwise the number of migrants risking their lives on unseaworthy vessels over perilous sea routes can only increase,” Mr. Crépeau noted.

He cautioned that the absence of regulated open migration channels for much needed low-wage migrants in several economic sectors (agriculture, construction, hospitality, to name a few) drives migration further underground, increases the precariousness of their situation, and entrenches smuggling mafias and exploitative employers, resulting in more deaths at sea and more human rights violations.

“It is paradoxical that, in the name of securing borders, European States are actually losing control over their borders, as mafias will often be ahead of that game. Moreover, the increasing number of persons fleeing from conflict, violence and oppression requires a new and concerted strategic approach by European States towards asylum seekers,” he said.

The expert stressed the need to bring to justice unscrupulous smugglers for the suffering they inflict on migrants and asylum seekers, but warned that “Europe will find it difficult to defeat resourceful and adaptable mafias unless it destroys their business model, which was created when barriers were erected and which thrives at evading restrictive migration policies of many EU Member States.”

“The search and rescue programmes cannot be the sole responsibility of the frontline countries,” Mr. Crépeau. “I call for more concerted efforts by EU Member States to assist frontline countries such as Italy, Malta, Greece and Spain.”

(*) Check the Open Letter (29 September 2014): http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=15119&LangID=E

François Crépeau (Canada) was appointed Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants in 2011 by the UN Human Rights Council. As Special Rapporteur, he is independent from any government or organization and serves in his individual capacity. Mr. Crépeau is also Full Professor at the Faculty of Law of McGill University, in Montréal, where he holds the Hans and Tamar Oppenheimer Chair in Public International Law. 

Learn more, log on to: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/Migration/SRMigrants/Pages/SRMigrantsIndex.aspx

In 2012, the Special Rapporteur undertook a one-year comprehensive study to examine the rights of migrants in the Euro-Mediterranean region, focusing in particular on the management of the external borders of the European Union. Starting with a visit to the EU authorities in Brussels, Mr. Crépeau also visited Turkey, Tunisia, Greece and Italy. (His reports can be found at: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/Migration/SRMigrants/Pages/CountryVisits.aspx

Read the International Convention for the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of their Families: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/ProfessionalInterest/Pages/CMW.aspx

For more information and media requests please contact Elizabeth Wabuge (+41 22 917 9138 / ewabuge@ohchr.org) or write to migrant@ohchr.org

For media inquiries related to other UN independent experts:
Xabier Celaya, UN Human Rights – Media Unit (+ 41 22 917 9383 / xcelaya@ohchr.org)

UN Human Rights, follow us on social media:Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/unitednationshumanrights 
Twitter: http://twitter.com/UNrightswireGoogle+ gplus.to/unitednationshumanrights 
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/UNOHCHRStorify: http://storify.com/UNrightswire

Check the Universal Human Rights Index: http://uhri.ohchr.org/en

– See more at: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=15239&LangID=E#sthash.5T2i0GVR.dpuf


Statements

Karawane / Statements / The Voice

Ein kurzer Bericht von KARAWANE – A short report by KARAWANE

-ENGLISH BELOW- Offenes Treffen der KARAWANE für die Rechte der Flüchtlinge und MigrantInnen Am 23. und 24. Juni 2018 fand ein offenes und bundesweites Treffen der KARAWANE der Flüchtlinge und MigrantInnen in Berlin statt. Neben den Teilnehmerinnen und Teilnehmer aus Berlin und Umgebung waren weitere aus Jena, Magdeburg und Wuppertal angereist. Die größte Gruppe bildeten… Read more »

corasol / german wide movement / Statements / Support/Solidarity

Rally and Workshop: All united against an inhumane asylum politics!

*English below, Francais en bas Der Koalititionsvertrag der Großen Koalition verschlimmert die Bedingungen in denen wir, Flüchtlinge, jetzt schon in Deutschland leben müssen und enthält uns unsere Grundrechte vor. Wir sprechen von uns als Flüchtlinge, weil wir in Deutschland als Flüchtlinge behandelt werden. Mit dem Label „Flüchtlinge“ erfahren wir Diskriminierungen und Gewalt. Keine beschönigende Rede… Read more »

Demo / News / press review / Statements

Viel wurde über uns geredet, jetzt reden wir! Mahnwache, Pressekonferenz und Demonstration am 9. Mai 2018 in Ellwangen

Pressemitteilung 08.05.2018 Wir, Bewohner*innen der Landeserstaufnahmeeinrichtung Ellwangen laden für Mittwoch den 9. Mai 2018, um 17 Uhr zu einer Pressekonferenz ein und rufen ab 18 Uhr zu einer Demonstration auf. Zwischen 12 bis 18 Uhr findet auf dem Marktplatz in Ellwangen eine Mahnwache statt. Die Pressekonferenz wird direkt vor der Landeserstaufnahmeeinrichtung Ellwangen stattfinden. Dort wird… Read more »

Featured

Daily Resistance Newspaper / News

Daily Resistance Monthly Editorial Meeting continues on July, 9

On July 9, 2018, the current editorial team of >Daily Resistance< will continue its new monthly meeting. It is the third in a series of social and working get-togethers that tries to bring together people who want to share their ideas about the newspaper, who want to contribute and who want to work on upcoming… Read more »

berlin news / Demo / News / oplatz / School / Support/Solidarity

Kundgebung & Demo zur Räumung der Ohlauer/GHS, 11.01.2018, 7:45

Räumung der GHS am 11.01.2018 – Solidarität mit den Bewohner_innen. Eviction of GHS, 11.01.2018 – Call for solidarity Die Chronologie der GHS auf Deutsch und Englisch Pressestatement der Nachbarschaftsinitiative Ohlauer Straße (NIO), 19.7.2017: Wir kennen die beteiligten Menschen, wir respektieren die Umstände, wir erinnern die Absprachen Solidaritätsaufruf Andere Zustände ermöglichen (*aze) ____ DEUTSCH (English, French,… Read more »

Demo Ohlauerstr.
News / oplatz / Statements / Support/Solidarity

Aufruf zu Solidarität mit den Bewohner*innen der Gerhart-Hauptmann-Schule

  Englisch/Französisch below Bewegungsfreiheit statt Staatsgewalt! Aufruf zu Solidarität mit den Bewohner*innen der Gerhart-Hauptmann-Schule Am 11. Januar soll die Gerhart-Hauptmann-Schule geräumt werden. Es ist zwar in den letzten drei Jahren etwas ruhiger um die Ohlauerstraße geworden, aber die Relevanz der Kämpfe dieser Gruppe ist nach wie vor groß. Lange vor der ‘Willkommenskultur’ zeigte der March… Read more »

Gerhard Hauptman Schule

Recent

News

Großdemo gegen Abschiebehaft am 31.08. in Büren und Paderborn

2019 jähren sich drei traurige Ereignisse: 100 Jahre Abschiebehaft in Deutschland, 25 Jahre Abschiebeknast in Büren und der 20. Todestag von Rashid Sbaai, der sich im Abschiebegefängnis Büren selbst tötete.   Kommt am 31.08. zur Großdemo in Büren & Paderborn! Wir fordern die Schließung aller Abschiebeknäste und das Ende der rassistischen Praxis der Abschiebung. Nationalismus, Antisemitismus… Read more »

International Refugee Movement / News

Solidarisch mit Bürglkopf- Hungerstreik in Innsbruck

Seit Sonntag, dem 09.06.2019, befinden sich in Innsbruck Aktivistinnen im solidarischen Hungerstreik. Vor dem Landesmuseum Innsbruck befindet sich seitdem rund um die Uhr ein Protestzelt. Der Streik in Innsbruck soll solange aufrechterhalten werden, bis der Forderung der Hungerstreikenden am Bürglkopf nachgekommen wurde. Diese fordern mit ihrem Protest die Schließung des „Rückkehrzentrums“. Seit dem 03.06 sind… Read more »

berlin news / News

Bass Down Borders #3

Wann: 7. Juni um 22:00 – 8. Juni um 12:00 Wo: Mensch Meier, Storkowerstraße 121, 10407 Berlin [DE]:(english Version below) Tanz deine Revolution? Deutschland kaputt raven? Bass Down Borders?!…Uns ist natürlich bewusst, dass sich etwas so widerliches wie Nationalgrenzen oder ein „Heimatminister“ nicht einfach so wegbassen lassen. Trotzdem wollen wir mit unserer Veranstaltung einen Beitrag… Read more »

berlin news / News / Support/Solidarity / Women / women-in-exile

Aufruf zur Unterstützung des Festivals “Building Bridges” auf den Oplatz Berlin

[ ***german below***] Dear friends & supporters, From 26.-29.July, we from Women in Exile & Friends are inviting to „Bulding Bridges“ Festival in O-Platz Berlin. The festival is for refugee women* (individuals and refugee women groups) and women* working with and for refugee women* issues. We will have different interesting activities like workshops, discussions, cultural… Read more »

berlin news / News / Women / women-in-exile

Building Bridges Festival 26.-29.07. 2019

Translation: AR | FR | FA | Women in Exile & Friends are planning a three day open air summer action camp in Berlin. The camp is for refugee women* (individuals and refugee women groups) and women* working with and for refugee women* issues. This camp will enable all of us to exchange on our experiences as refugee women* living in… Read more »