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Stop refugee deaths: yes we can
Brussels, 31 August 2015 – With no alternatives, people fleeing war and oppression try to reach safety in Europe at any cost. All too often they die. Stopping such tragedies is entirely achievable. Through cooperation and good governance European states may open legal and safe channels for refugees to reach Europe. Now is the time for a European humanitarian visa scheme.
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Refugees welcome! Civil society acts
Brussels, 20 August 2015 – As discussions continue on the political level about how to deal with increased numbers of asylum seekers in Europe, many citizens across the continent have been quick to set up local initiatives to welcome and support refugees. Whilst some politicians have raised fears about Europe being overwhelmed by migrants, many locals have shown that hospitality and friendship is possible even in difficult circumstances, such as in Greece, Hungary and Italy.
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Little refugee girl in Malta
Valletta, 10 July 2015 - Roxanne Borg, refugee lawyer for JRS Malta, describes a chance meeting with a little Syrian girl in one of Malta’s open centres for asylum seekers.
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Manual for detention visitors
Brussels, 9 July 2015 - JRS Europe recently published a manual for detention visitors. For the last eight years, detention visitors from across the JRS network in Europe have gathered together annually to exchange information and experiences. At the last meeting of the Detention Visitor’s Support Group (DVSG) it was decided to gather all this knowledge together in the form of a manual for new detention visitors.
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Celebrating with refugees in Europe
Brussels, 15 June 2015 - World Refugee Day is marked on 20th June. In some countries there is also Refugee Week from 15 to 21 June. Together with JRS teams in 13 European countries and close partners in a further nine, JRS Europe invites you to reflect on what it means to open your door to someone in need.
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World Refugee Day: push forward, not back
Rome, 15 June 2015 – For World Refugee Day this weekend, the Jesuit Refugee Service urges you to remember that the key to change is within each of us. While governments decide to accept or reject refugees, only we have the power to truly welcome them. We must change our fixed view of refugees as 'the other.'
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JRS Europe Annual Report 2014
Brussels, 27 May 2015 – “We must open the doors,” says regional director, Jean-Marie Carrière in JRS Europe’s annual report, released today. This will enable forced migrants to “avoid life-threatening journeys and help put smugglers out of business.”
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Recent stories
Malta: No Giving Up! Stories of unfinished journeys
Valetta, 18 May 2015 – No Giving Up, a publication launched by the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) Malta last week at an event at San Anton Palace under the patronage of her Excellency Marie Louise Coleiro Preca, recounts the experience of six Somali women who are seeking asylum in Malta.
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Syria: family volunteers in Aleppo
Brussels, 8 May 2015 – Prior to the outbreak of conflict in Syria, the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) managed a number of small projects assisting Iraqi refugees living in Aleppo, Damascus and Homs. The JRS centres were places where people from different ethnic and religious backgrounds came together. While Syrian communities peaceful coexisted together, for many there was a sense of distance between them, an invisible barrier. When violence erupted in Syria in 2011, these JRS centres would experience profound transformations.
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Job vacancy: Policy and Advocacy Officer
Brussels, 30 April 2015 – The JRS Europe office in Brussels is currently recruiting a Policy and Advocacy Officer. Do you have what it takes to fulfil this dynamic role? Complete and submit the application pack by 15 May 17.30 CET.
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Europe: opportunity to prioritise saving lives lost
Rome, Brussels, 24 April 2015 – The EU has yet again failed to prioritise saving the lives of people fleeing conflict and persecution. The Jesuit Refugee Service sincerely hopes last night's European Council decision to increase resources to Frontex will lead to improved 'search and rescue' of forced migrants crossing the Mediterranean. But JRS fears the consequences of the raft of measures designed to prevent forced migrants from gaining access to the protection they are so desperately seeking.
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Italy: those seeking asylum are seeking help from you
Rome, 24 April 2015 – The number of asylum applications in Italy increased by 143 percent in 2014, reaching a new record of 64,886, according to the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) Italy annual report. While great strides have been made to accommodate refugees and asylum seekers, more needs to be done by the Italian and European authorities to welcome and integrate the newcomers. During the presentation of the report in Rome yesterday, JRS called for a cultural shift in Europe towards hospitality and solidarity.
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Europe: save lives now! No more deaths in the Mediterranean
Brussels, Rome, 21 April 2015 – As the death toll in the Mediterranean reaches record proportions, Europe’s first priority must be to implement a full-scale search and rescue operation. Saving human life must come first. Europe should follow the example of Italy. Now is the time for extraordinary action.
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Spain: legalising human rights violations?
Madrid, 27 March 2015 - The Spanish parliament, yesterday evening, adopted a law that allows for immediate returns of irregular migrants at the borders of the Spanish enclaves Ceuta and Melilla in Morocco. JRS Europe and SJM Spain have serious concerns that the law would legalise 'hot returns' of people in need of protection without providing them with access to the proper procedures. We call upon the European Commission to fully investigate the human rights implications of this law.
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Melilla or die
Madrid, 24 March 2015 - It took Abou Deseigne (29) three years to get to Spain from Mali. If you have the right travel documents you can get on a plane in the capital Bamako and be in Madrid in about seven hours.
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Spain-Morocco: border violence
Madrid, 24 March 2015 – Together with Servicio Jesuita a Migrantes (SJM), JRS Europe is monitoring events on the Spanish land borders with Morocco very closely. Following interviews with migrants and visits to border posts at the Melilla-Nador border detailed submissions were made to an EU delegation that visited in February. JRS Europe is alarmed by recent border violence and the continued efforts of the Spanish government to legalise push-backs.
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Humanitarian visas save lives
Brussels, 24 March 2015 - JRS Europe is lobbying for the creation of more safe and legal paths to Europe. Currently, restrictive EU border policy means that people fleeing persecution and conflict often take terrible risks in the hands of smugglers in their attempt to reach safety.
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UK inquiry: use of detention must change
London, 3 March 2015 – A landmark report, published today, by a British cross-party parliamentary group concludes that immigration detention in the UK is 'expensive, ineffective and unjust.' The Jesuit Refugee Service in Europe supports the findings of the report and calls for its key recommendations to be followed. Alternatives to detention must be used whilst a maximum time limit on detention of 28-days would greatly reduce human suffering.
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France: Youth Encounters
Paris, 24 February 2015 - Welcome Project co-ordinator for JRS France, Marcela Villalobos Cid, writes about a new hospitality project focused on youth in Paris. Twice per month, in the chaplaincy of the Institute of Political Studies in Paris, a youth group get together to cook, to discuss and to share. This group is called ‘Welcome Jeunes’ (Youth Welcome), a new project of the Jesuit Refugee Service France.
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PRESS RELEASE: Lampedusa: Another Tragedy, Europe Must Act
Rome, Brussels, 11 February 2015 – About 300 people have drowned as their rubber dinghies sank in the Mediterranean between Libya and Lampedusa, Italy. This latest tragedy is a twofold demonstration of the failure of European border policy. Not only have European states not taken the necessary measures to save lives in the Mediterranean, they have established a series of ‘legal’ obstacles for those fleeing intensifying conflicts in the Middle East and North Africa.
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