«Для Офісу президента це виглядає затягуванням часу з надією на те, що кругова порука в судовій системі знову спрацює, і Верховний суд ухвалить вигідні рішення для скомпрометованої верхівки КСУ»
The migrant crisis on Poland’s border, which Western powers accuse Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko of engineering, caught international attention in November. But asylum seekers on the Poland-Belarus border aren’t alone in being shunted back and forth across Europe’s land and sea borders, say rights organizations and other monitors.
Throughout the year, irregular migration to Europe has been increasing, with more than 160,000 migrants entering the European Union this year, mostly through the Balkans and Italy. That’s a 70% jump from 2020, when pandemic travel restrictions are thought to have impacted the mobility of would-be migrants, and a 45% increase over the previous pre-pandemic year.
And with irregular migration picking up again, rights campaigners say the EU and national governments are increasingly skirting or breaking international humanitarian laws in their determination to prevent war refugees, asylum seekers and economic migrants from entering or remaining on the continent.
They say European leaders appear determined to avoid a repeat of 2015, when more than a million asylum seekers from the Middle East, sub-Saharan Africa and central Asia arrived in Europe, roiling the continent’s politics and fueling the rise of anti-migrant political parties.
Reports have multiplied of refugees and migrants being forcibly pushed back over the EU’s external borders. So, too, have reports of refugees being prevented from filing asylum applications. Poland passed a law in August stipulating that migrants who cross the border are to be “taken back to the state border” and “ordered to leave the country immediately,” preventing them from making an asylum application.
Pushbacks breach both European human rights laws and the 1951 Geneva Convention, which outline the rights of refugees as well as the legal obligations of the 146 signatory states to protect them.
Signatory states aren’t allowed to impose penalties on refugees who enter their countries illegally in search of asylum, nor are they allowed to expel refugees (without due process). Under the convention, refugees should not be forcibly returned, technically known as “refoul,” to the home countries they fled. Asylum seekers are meant to be provided with free access to courts, and signatory states are required to offer refugees administrative assistance.
The EU, its border agency, Frontex, and the bloc’s national governments, say they do observe international humanitarian law, but according to several recent investigations by rights organizations, the rules are now being flouted routinely and systematically.
“EU member states have adopted increasingly restrictive and punitive asylum rules and are focusing on reducing migration flows, with devastating consequences,” Amnesty International warned recently.
“We are witnessing tremendous human suffering caused by the EU-Turkey deal and by the EU-Libya cooperation, both of which are leaving men, women and children trapped and exposed to suffering and abuse,” the rights organization says in reference to deals struck with Turkey and Libya to block migrants heading to Europe and readmit them when they are ejected from Europe.
In the case of Libya, migrants are often returned to detention camps run by militias where Amnesty International and others have documented harrowing violations, including sexual violence against men, women and children. In a report published earlier this year, Amnesty noted, “Decade-long violations against refugees and migrants continued unabated in Libyan detention centers during the first six months of 2021 despite repeated promises to address them.”
Lighthouse Reports, a Dutch nonprofit journalism consortium, has documented dozens of instances in which Frontex surveillance aircraft were in the vicinity of migrant boats later intercepted by the Libyan Coast Guard. “There is a clear pattern discernible. Boats in distress are spotted, communications take place between European actors and the Libyan Coast Guard,” Lighthouse researchers said in a report this year.
Frontex has routinely denied the allegations but lawmakers in the European Parliament accused the agency, after a four-month investigation, of failing to “fulfill its human rights obligations.” In the Balkans, the Border Violence Monitoring Network and other NGOs say they have gathered testimony from hundreds of refugees who allege they have been beaten back into Bosnia-Herzegovina across the Croatian border by baton-wielding men whose uniforms bear no insignia.
Europe’s peripheral countries have also been erecting border fences and building walls with the prospects of more Afghan refugees appearing on their borders acting as a spur. Greece has completed a 40-kilometer wall along its land border with Turkey and installed an automated surveillance system to try to prevent asylum seekers from reaching Europe. Other countries are following suit and have been pushing the EU to help with funding.
Critics say the wall-building now contrasts with the criticism European leaders leveled four years ago against then-U.S. President Donald Trump over his plan to build a wall on America’s southern border with Mexico. “We have a history and a tradition that we celebrate when walls are brought down and bridges are built,” admonished Federica Mogherini, then the EU’s foreign policy chief.
While migrant advocates complain of rights violations, calls are mounting in Europe for changes to be made to both the Geneva Convention and the bloc’s humanitarian laws. Critics of the convention say it was primarily drawn up to cope with population displacement in Europe in the wake of the Second World War. They say it fails to recognize the nature and scale of the much more complex migration patterns of the 21st century, which could see numbers swell because of climate change.
Last week in Budapest, Balázs Orbán, a deputy minister in the Hungarian government, said the current EU migration laws should be replaced. The current legal system is “catalyzing the influx of illegal migrants, and not helping to stop them on the borders,” he said. “This framework was created during the time of the Geneva Convention in 1951, when refugees from the Soviet Union needed to be accommodated for. Now, times have changed,” he added.
A German court Tuesday convicted a former Islamic State member of the 2015 murder of a 5-year-old Yazidi girl.
Taha al-Jumailly, an Iraqi national, was also sentenced to serve life in prison for genocide and crimes against humanity. He was ordered to pay the victim’s mother, who survived captivity, $57,000.
It is the first genocide verdict against an Islamic State member.
“This is the moment Yazidis have been waiting for,” said lawyer Amal Clooney, who acted as a counsel for the mother. “To finally hear a judge, after seven years, declare that what they suffered was genocide. To watch a man face justice for killing a Yazidi girl — because she was Yazidi.”
German prosecutors said al-Jumailly bought the mother and child as slaves in Syria in 2015. He then took them to Fallujah in Iraq where he beat them and didn’t give them enough food.
In 2015, al-Jumailly chained the girl to window bars in a room where the temperature reached 50 degrees Celsius. The girl died.
In 2019, al-Jumailly was arrested in Greece and extradited to Germany, where authorities took the case using the principle of universal jurisdiction.
Al-Jumailly’s German wife was sentenced last month to 10 years in prison for her involvement in the case. She was a witness for the prosecution in al-Jumailly’s trial.
In 2014, IS rampaged through the Yazidi heartland in northern Iraq. In many cases, it forced young women into sex slavery. Many in the Yazidi community, which numbers more than half-a-million, were displaced.
In 2016, a U.N. commission declared the IS treatment of the Yazidis inside Syria as a genocide.
“We can only hope that [this case] will serve as a milestone for further cases to follow,” Zemfira Dlovani, a lawyer and member of Germany’s Central Council of Yazidis, told The Associated Press, noting that thousands of Yazidi women were enslaved and mistreated by the Islamic State group. “This should be the beginning, not the end.”
Some information in this report came from The Associated Press and Reuters.
До списку, копію якого Радіо Вільна Європа/Радіо Свобода отримало напередодні його схвалення послами ЄС 1 грудня, входять національний білоруський авіаперевізник «Белавіа» та туристичні компанії
Ним став Олександр Поклад
На думку правозахисників, Габишева незаконно утримують у спеціалізованій лікарні
Голова Офісу президента каже, що повідомив слідчим усю відому йому інформацію
Депутат Соха заявив, що йому «соромно» за призначеня Шурми й Татарова до Офісу президента, а Руслана Демченка – до Ради нацбезпеки і оборони
Нападник «Баварії» та збірної Польщі Роберт Левандовскі посів у голосуванні футбольних експертів друге місце
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken is in Latvia Tuesday for talks with the country’s leaders and a NATO ministerial meeting as the alliance expresses concern about Russia’s military buildup along the border with Ukraine.
Blinken’s schedule in Riga includes sessions with Latvian President Egils Levits, Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins and Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics. He is also due to meet with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg ahead of the ministerial talks later in the day.
Levits told reporters after his own talks with Stoltenberg on Monday that Russia’s military presence represents direct pressure on Ukraine, and that NATO “will remain in solidarity with Ukraine.”
Stoltenberg called on Russia to reduce tensions in the region, saying the military buildup is “unprovoked and unexplained.”
“Any future Russian aggression against Ukraine would come at a high price and have serious political and economic consequences for Russia,” Stoltenberg said.
A main focus of work at the NATO ministerial meeting is updating what the group calls its Strategic Concept, which was last changed a decade ago.
Stoltenberg said it is important to revisit the strategic document given the changed nature of the threats NATO faces, what he called a “more dangerous world.”
“We see the behavior of Russia, we see cyber, we see terrorist threats, we see proliferation of nuclear weapons,” Stoltenberg said. “And we see the security consequences of China which is now becoming more and more a global power.”
The talks in Riga also come as NATO members Latvia, Lithuania and Poland deal with a border crisis with neighboring Belarus.
The European Union accuses Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko of enticing thousands of migrants, mainly from the Middle East, to travel to Belarus and try to cross into Latvia, Lithuania and Poland in order to destabilize the European Union. The EU says Lukashenko is retaliating for sanctions it imposed against his government.
Blinken is scheduled to travel Wednesday to Sweden to meet with fellow ministers from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, and to discuss bilateral ties with Swedish officials.
Дослідження відображає складну картину безпеки, з якою зіткнулася адміністрація Байдена після виходу США з Афганістану
Last week’s 10% drop in the value of the Turkish currency plunged it to historic lows, threatening an economic crisis. The Turkish lira has dropped 45 percent this year, prompting concerns that economic turmoil could further raise tensions over the presence of millions of refugees. For VOA, Dorian Jones reports from Istanbul.
Newly named Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal has emerged from behind the scenes to take over one of Silicon Valley’s highest-profile and politically volatile jobs.
But his prior lack of name recognition, coupled with a solid technical background, appears to be what some big company backers were looking for to lead Twitter out of its current morass.
A 37-year-old immigrant from India, Agrawal comes from outside the ranks of celebrity CEOs, which include the man he’s replacing, Jack Dorsey, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg or SpaceX and Tesla’s Elon Musk. Those brand-name company founders and leaders have often been in the news — and on Twitter — for exploits beyond the day-to-day running of their companies.
Having served as Twitter’s chief technology officer for the past four years, Agrawal’s appointment was seen by Wall Street as a choice of someone who will focus on ushering Twitter into what’s widely seen as the internet’s next era — the metaverse.
Agrawal is a “‘safe’ pick who should be looked upon as favorably by investors,” wrote CFRA Research analyst Angelo Zino, who noted that Twitter shareholder Elliott Management Corp. had pressured Dorsey to step down.
Elliott released a statement Monday saying Agrawal and new board chairman Bret Taylor were the “right leaders for Twitter at this pivotal moment for the company.” Taylor is president and chief operating officer of the business software company Salesforce.
Agrawal joins a growing cadre of Indian American CEOs of large tech companies, including Sundar Pichai of Google parent Alphabet, Microsoft’s Satya Nadella and IBM’s Arvind Krishna.
He joined San Francisco-based Twitter in 2011, when it had just 1,000 employees, and has been its chief technical officer since 2017. At the end of last year, the company had a workforce of 5,500.
Agrawal previously worked at Microsoft, Yahoo and AT&T in research roles. At Twitter, he’s worked on machine learning, revenue and consumer engineering and helping with audience growth. He studied at Stanford and the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay.
While Twitter has high-profile users like politicians and celebrities and is a favorite of journalists, its user base lags far behind old rivals like Facebook and YouTube and newer ones like TikTok. It has just over 200 million daily active users, a common industry metric.
As CEO, Agrawal will have to step beyond the technical details and deal with the social and political issues Twitter and social media are struggling with. Those include misinformation, abuse and effects on mental health.
Agrawal got a fast introduction to life as CEO of a high-profile company that’s one of the central platforms for political speech online. Conservatives quickly unearthed a tweet he sent in 2010 that read “If they are not gonna make a distinction between muslims and extremists, then why should I distinguish between white people and racists.”
As some Twitter users pointed out, the 11-year-old tweet was quoting a segment on “The Daily Show,” which was referencing the firing of Juan Williams, who made a comment about being nervous about Muslims on an airplane.
Twitter did not immediately respond to a message for comment on the tweet.
За словами Людмили Денісової, рідні можуть передавати Володимиру Дудці життєво необхідні ліки лише раз на кілька місяців
Twitter founder and CEO Jack Dorsey is stepping down as the company’s leader.
In a news release, Twitter said Dorsey would be replaced by Parag Agrawal, who has been the company’s chief technology officer since 2017. The move is effective immediately.
“I’ve decided to leave Twitter because I believe the company is ready to move on from its founders. My trust in Parag as Twitter’s CEO is deep. His work over the past 10 years has been transformational. I’m deeply grateful for his skill, heart, and soul. It’s his time to lead,” Dorsey said in a statement.
Dorsey made his resignation official in a tweet Monday and attached a letter with an explanation of why he was leaving.
“not sure anyone has heard but, I resigned from Twitter,” he wrote.
On Sunday, Dorsey tweeted “I love twitter.”
Dorsey, 45, founded the microblogging platform in 2006 and was CEO until 2008 when he was pushed aside only to return to the top spot in 2015.
Last year, Elliott Management, a major stakeholder in the company, wanted Dorsey to choose between being CEO of Twitter or CEO of Square, a digital payment company he founded.
Twitter’s stock rose on the news, but trading of the shares was suspended.
Some information in this report came from Reuters.
Байден у зверненні заявив, що новий варіант неминуче потрапить до США, але, за його словами, країна має засоби, необхідні для захисту американців – особливо вакцинацію