He said in a declare that violence, ill-treatment and resistance continue to be frequently reported at many entry and exit points at land and sea borders..
UN Refugee Agency, UNHCRexpressed deep concern at the increasing incidences of violence and serious human rights violations against refugees and migrants at the various European borders, some of which have resulted in tragic death.
Despite repeated calls from UNHCR, other UN agencies, intergovernmental organizations and NGOs, violence continues inside and outside the European Union, the statement said. continue.
“We are very concerned about the frequent and consistent reports coming from Greece’s land and sea borders with Turkey.UNHCR has recorded almost 540 reported cases of Greek informal income since the beginning of 2020,” Mr. Grandi said.
Repulsed and threatened
Turkey The current welcomed about 3.7 million Syrians and about 330,000 others, most of them Afghans.
Disruptive incidents were also reported in Central and South-Eastern Europe at the border with EU Member States.
According to UNHCRpeople were pushed back and subjected to “a disturbing pattern of intimidation, intimidation, violence and humiliation”.
Mr Grandi added: “At sea, people report being left on life rafts or even being forced directly into the water, showing a lack of concern for human life.
Since September, at least three people have been killed in such incidents in the Aegean Sea, including one in January.
“Equally appalling activities are regularly reported at land borders, with consistent testimonies of people who were robbed and brutally repulsed in extreme weather conditions”, emphasized the head of UNHCR.
According to the United Nations refugee agency, despite credible evidence, European countries have mostly failed to investigate such reports.
Walls and fences are being built
Mr. Grandi reiterated that the right to apply for asylum does not depend on how people arrive in a country, and that those seeking asylum must be allowed to do so.
Based on recent dataAt least 82.4 million people around the world have been forced to flee their homes, including nearly 26.4 million refugees, about half of whom are under the age of 18.
“Those fleeing war and oppression have few options available“Said High Commissioner.
Adding that “walls and fences are unlikely to act as a meaningful deterrent,” he attests that they will instead contribute to greater things, especially for women and children.
At sea, people report being adrift on life rafts or even sometimes being forced directly into the water – High Commissioner for Refugees
The Story of ‘Fortress Europe’
Calling for an end to what is happening at European borders, Mr. Grandi reiterated the Agency’s commitment to protecting human life, human rights and dignity, and called for more independent investigations. about such cases.
“We fear these reprehensible practices are now in danger of becoming normalized and policy-based,” he continued.
He reminded that the majority of the world’s refugees are low- and middle-income countries with fewer resources, often bordering the countries of origin of the crisis.
Call for protection
Noting that European countries have long been strong supporters of the work of UNHCR and are making an important contribution to helping protect refugees and supporting host countries, Mr. Grandi reminded. Financial assistance and capacity abroad cannot replace the responsibilities and obligations of States to receive and protect refugees in their territories..
He also called on States to uphold their commitments and respect basic human rights, including the right to life and the right to asylum.
“How Europe chooses to protect asylum seekers and refugees is an important and pre-existing issue not only in the region but also globally,” Mr. Grandi concluded.