"A stark reminder that we have to find a sustainable solution." That is what Ursula von der Leyen, head of the European Commission, calls last month's fires in Camp Moria. The recent fires have completely destroyed the camp. It remains unclear where all refugees and migrants should now be housed.
According to Europol, 70 people have been arrested following a pan-European action against child smuggling. The action was supported by Europol and carried out under the leadership of the UK. Suspects were arrested in Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania, the Netherlands, Slovenia, Spain and the United Kingdom. At least 53 of the 206 victims were still children. Europol has not yet said what crimes the suspects would have committed.
Last Friday, the asylum seekers' center in Sneek (NL) closed. At that time 22 people in the azc were infected with the corona virus. All residents were forced to quarantine and over the course of the weekend, 400 people, both residents and employees, were tested for the virus. The infected number of residents came to 28. It is difficult to isolate and there is a lot of worry among them.
The Council of Europe is being called upon by the Parliamentary Assembly this January to "do more to combat trafficking in human beings and ensure that legal standards are adequate and applied by all member states". The advisory body of the EU-council is particularly deeply concerned about the situation surrounding migrant and refugee children and calls for "consideration of coordinated strategies for mutual assistance and the exchange of information on missing refugee and migrant children and unidentified dead children."
In 10 years time more than 2,500 vulnerable children have disappeared from Dutch asylum seekers 'centers, showed NRC Handelsblad. And it seems that no Amber Alert has ever been used for such a child. How did that happen? That's wat Member of Parliament Groothuizen (D66) wants to know from the Dutch State Secretary for Justice and Security. In addition, the State Secretary was questioned on the possible causes of the disappearances and the responsibility that the Dutch government has for these children, who run great risk of becoming victims of human trafficking.
Four Dutchmen were arrested Tuesday morning in The Hague, Leiden and Krimpen aan den IJssel on suspicion of involvement in a larger human smuggling network that was mainly active in France. The Public Prosecution Service said the network has smuggled some 700 people from France to England in refrigerated trucks or boats. The group of suspects is said to have earned about 4 million euros from human smuggling. Two of the detainees are suspected of smuggling migrants to the Netherlands, while the other two are alleged to have facilitated this smuggling.
The Gibraltar Police (Royal Gibraltar Regimen) and the Spanish National Police Unit (Policía Nacional) say they have dismantled a network of people smugglers with the support of Europol. The group is suspected of smuggling at least 130 Moroccans to Gibraltar. 8 of them were minors.
A group of mainly young Eritreans who call themselves "Dublin Brothers" is in danger of being put on the street again when the winter shelter in Amsterdam closes on April 1. The group of young migrants have a Dublin claim elsewhere in Europe and are staying in the Netherlands illegally in the hope they can apply for asylum in this country later on. Some of the youngsters are said to be minors.
The Dutch government pumps 3.5 to 4 million into the improvement of the reception and protection for unaccompanied minor asylum seekers in Greece. With this money the Dutch want to set up guardianship facilities in Greece, set up and organize the reception of unaccompanied minors and offer assistance in guiding those who have completed the asylum procedure. The aid comes at a time when several Dutch cities show their willingness to receive the UMAs who are trapped in Greece into their municipalities.
Fishing and pleasure boating are blind spots in the border control of Dutch waters that should prevent human smuggling and cross-border crime. his investigation by the Dutch Inspectorate of Justice and Security shows that border control in Dutch seaports is not functioning as intended. The Royal Netherlands Marechaussee and the Rotterdam Seaport Police are not aware of all risks.
In 2018, 19,845 unaccompanied children applied for asylum in the EU, according to Eurostat. This figure is much lower than in the previous years, in 2017 31,400 children applied for asylum and 63,250 children in 2016. More than half of them came from one of these 6 countries; Afghanistan (16%), Eritrea (10%), Pakistan or Syria (both 7%) and Guinea or Iraq (6%).
In early 2016, Europol's top official Brian Donald told British newspaper "The Observer" that at least 10,000 unaccompanied migrants and refugee children have disappeared since 2014 after arriving in Europe. At the time, Donald stated that it would probably be more than 10,000 children and that this figure would be a "conservative" figure. Meanwhile, the European Migration Network, which is funded by the European Union and coordinated by the European Commission, estimates that 30,000 children traveling alone have disappeared between 2014 and 2017.
Eurostat figures show that in 2019 13,800 unaccompanied children applied for asylum in the 27 EU Member States. That is almost 20% less compared to 2018. Two thirds of the unaccompanied children were between 16 and 17 years old. No less than 11% of the children were younger than 14 years old. The majority asked for asylum in either Greece, Germany and Belgium.
Today is World Suicide Prevention Day. On this day, people worldwide reflect on people who died by suicide or those who survived an attempt. In addition, attention is drawn to the prevention of suicide. The organizers also hope to remove the stigma surrounding suicide and make the subject a topic for discussion.