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The London summit this week could kick-start the revival of the stalled reform process in the region – but won’t if human rights and the rule of law stay off the agenda

  Western Balkan and European Union leaders meet in London this week for a summit that could be a chance to revive stalled reforms and focus attention on critical issues. Unfortunately, there is every chance it will turn out to be full of hot…
Migrants are seen in front of a dorm destroyed during Bosnian 1992-1995 war, in Bihac, Bosnia and Herzegovina May 11, 2018.
News
Before it was demolished at the end of October, the sprawling migrant camp in Calais had become a symbol of Europe’s shame, a visible reminder of the European Union’s failure to find a humane, fair, and coordinated approach to migration. But…
Former camp residents wave as they depart in buses for migrant centers elsewhere in France. 24 October 2016.
News
Having spent most of the last two weeks in Calais, I can say that while the operation to clear the French migrant camp known as "The Jungle" may ultimately benefit adults, it has failed unaccompanied children. On Wednesday, police evacuated all…
Huddled under blankets, a group of Afghan boys spend the night on the street after French authorities abruptly ended registration and relocation for unaccompanied children who had been staying in the Calais migrant camp, October 26, 2016.
News

Children are at risk if authorities continue to rush dismantlement of the notorious refugee camp.

A short drive from the orderly streets of the Calais town center, past a series of warehouses and fuel stations, is one of the most startling scenes in modern Europe: the squalid, sprawling, overcrowded migrant camp often called the “Jungle.” …
Outside of the converted containers where unaccompanied children were being sheltered as demolitions began, hundreds more had not yet been registered by midweek.
News

The EU is responsible for correcting the irrational, irresponsible debate about migration to Europe. So far, it’s failed.

Imagine the Hollywood blockbuster about one boat’s perilous journey in the Mediterranean. The Eritrean mother with her five-year-old son, the 16-year-old Afghan boy traveling on his own, and the Syrian patriarch with his entire family — they would be the…
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“Aman.” a 29-year-old Eritrean, had just described his arduous journey to Europe when I heard the news about hundreds of deaths in the Mediterranean. He, like many others I spoke with last week in Dresden, risked their lives last summer crossing from war-…
News
With horrendous reports of death and destruction coming from Ukraine, the UK Home Office continues to regard it as a “safe country of origin” for asylum seekers. That means a Ukrainian asylum seeker landing at Heathrow tonight would still be forced to…
News
Picture your 16-year-old son, brother, cousin or friend. Picture him without his parents in a strange country, where he is picked up by uniformed officials and put on a plane alone. Picture him dropped off in a strife-ridden city, like Kabul or Baghdad,…
News

Many Afghan children who come to Europe are second or third generation refugees who hardly remember "their" country

When I interview Afghan children who make their journey alone to Europe I'm almost always drawn into a family history that intersects with the myriad conflicts that have made life in Afghanistan so difficult and dangerous. Ten days ago, two sisters, ages…
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Last week, the Home Office Minister Meg Hillier said on the BBC’s Woman’s Hour programme that the UK Border Agency ensures that very complex cases brought by women asylum seekers do not go through the UK’s so-called “detained fast-track” asylum process,…
News
The UK Border Agency has published a report today showing that targets to speed up the asylum procedure are unachievable. The chief inspector, John Vine, said that the agency deals with vulnerable people and "we should remember that, first and foremost,…
News
European immigration policy has to do more than simply try to bar the door to migrants and asylum-seekers. Instead, Buttiglione offered his support for a German proposal that resurrects the discredited idea of establishing centres to process asylum-…
News

Human Rights Watch Submission to CERD

In this memorandum sent to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination prior to its discussion on the rights of non-citizens, Human Rights Watch outlines its concerns regarding discrimination against selected categories of non-citizens in…