Residence papers as wages
Greece probably uses refugees for pushbacks
06/28/2022, 10:32 am
At the EU’s external border in Greece, refugees are apparently being pushed by the police to push back people who are coming. The practice is illegal and, according to the federal government, represents a “break with all the values that we represent in the European Union”.
According to joint research by several media outlets, the Greek police are using refugees at the EU’s external border to illegally reject asylum seekers, so-called pushbacks. Several refugees had been forced to force people to return to Turkey, the “Spiegel” reported, citing joint research by ARD, “Lighthouse Reports”, “Le Monde” and the “Guardian”. In return, they were promised residence permits.
According to the report, the police want to protect their own officers – the pushbacks are considered very dangerous. In villages near the border, the actions of the Greek police are known: Farmers and fishermen who are allowed to enter the restricted area on the Evros River have repeatedly seen refugees working for the police. Three Greek police officers also confirmed the practice to the reporters.
A Syrian, with whom the police are working, according to refugees and local residents, plays an important role. According to the report, he was cooperating with people smugglers in Istanbul to get pushback helpers and was very violent against asylum seekers.
“Systematic, pan-European problem”
According to European law, Greece must allow asylum seekers who reach Greek territory to seek asylum, but has ignored this law for years. “This approach is a break with all the values that we represent in the European Union,” the federal government’s human rights commissioner, Luise Amtsberg, told reporters. The practice cannot be surpassed in terms of its abyss and perfidy.
Bundestag Vice President Katrin Göring-Eckardt expressed her dismay at the reports and brought up possible sanctions against Greece. “Using refugees in need as helpers for illegal pushbacks is deeply inhuman and violates all rule of law,” said the Greens politician to the newspapers of the Funke media group. “An independent investigation is needed, and possible sanctions against Greece must also be discussed,” Göring-Eckardt continued.
In April, the Council of Europe denounced a significant increase in unlawful refusals of asylum seekers in European countries. These human rights violations have become a “systematic, pan-European problem”. Accordingly, in some countries the use of violence against migrants is the order of the day.