Diary note: New report on the failings and dangers of Europe’s response to the global refugee crisis

Refugees wait to be processed outside the Presevo transit center in Presevo, Serbia, Monday, Oct. 5, 2015. (Photo by Giles Clarke/Getty Images Reportage)

Amnesty International

Diary Note: Invitation to Press Briefing, Brussels, 16 Nov 10.15am

New report on the failings and dangers of Europe’s response to the global refugee crisis

(Brussels, 10 November) Razor-wire fences, push-backs and violence at the hands of authorities, and outsourcing of responsibilities to third countries – these are the measures that have become intrinsic to the European Union’s (EU) so-called response to the refugee crisis, and which are documented in Amnesty International’s forthcoming report Fear and Fences: Europe’s Response to Keeping Refugees At Bay.

The new report provides in-depth analysis of and data on how Europe’s policies and practices aim to prevent people from arriving, instead of offering protection provided for under international and European law. But rather than stemming arrivals, this flawed approach is pushing people to take even more dangerous routes, and failing those in need of and with the right to asylum.

The report documents human rights abuses, with new testimonies from victims and survivors, the human and financial costs of fences, and preventative practices at Greece and Bulgaria's borders with Turkey, Spain's with Morocco, and Hungary's with Serbia, where fences are now the norm to keep people out. It also assesses the dangers of new EU proposals including the EU-Turkey Action Plan and proposals around Safe Country lists, with concrete recommendations to countries covered and the EU.

There will be an embargoed press briefing the day before, with a Palestinian refugee from Syria interviewed for the report. The report will be released on 17 November at 01.01 (GMT+1). All embargos on the report and related content and interviews will be lifted at this time.

Embargoed press briefing

– When Monday 16 November at 10.15am (GMT+1)

– Where Amnesty International’s European Institutions Office, Rue de Treves 35, 1040 Brussels, Belgium

– Who Irem Arf, report author and Amnesty International’s European Migration researcher; John Dalhuisen, Amnesty International’s Director for Europe and Central Asia; Iverna McGowan, acting director of Amnesty International European Institutions Office.

– Languages The press briefing with be in English. Follow-up interviews with Brussels-based spokespeople can be conducted in English, French, Dutch and Turkish.

To request a copy of the report materials under embargo, or to arrange an interview please contact:

Maeve Patterson on +32 (0)2 548 27 73 or +32 (0)483 680 812, or by email at [email protected], or Paul Creeney on +32 (0)2 548 27 74 or by email at [email protected].