european union

Charity turns old blankets into winter coats for refugees

By COSTAS KANTOURIS

syrian_refugees_winter_coat_1

THESSALONIKI, Greece (AP) — It’s been a miserable winter in Greece, especially for the many thousands of refugees staying in tents in old factories and warehouses. At a tiny workshop in the northern city of Thessaloniki, they’re trying to make a little bit of a difference.

Volunteers are working long hours to try to keep the refugees warm, with bursts of noise from sewing machines revealing their mission: To turn discarded blankets into jackets, overcoats and other winter wearables.

There’s an almost endless supply: The blankets — mostly army issue, gray with red stitching — came from the sprawling refugee and migrant encampment at Idomeni on the Macedonian border that is now closed.

As many as 14,000 people lived in tents at the site last year after European countries closed borders to refugees streaming into the continent. Greek police cleared the camp last May, leaving hundreds of tents and thousands of blankets behind. A Greek-German charity called Naomi collected them by the vanload to be washed and reused.

Project organizer Elke Wollschlaeger helps make and even model the coats, which have the label “Remember Idomeni” stitched inside.

“We’re trying to keep it in people’s minds what happened in Idomeni last year, and what Europe did to refugees and the Greek people, just leaving the borders closed and thousands of people stranded,” she said.

Greece’s government says more than 60,000 refugees and migrants remain stuck in the county following the border closures. It has struggled to shelter camp dwellers from freezing overnight temperatures. Authorities on the island of Lesbos are investigating three recent deaths at a refugee camp there, possibly caused by fumes from makeshift heaters.

For Syrian refugee Hasan Al Kodsy, helping out at the coat workshop in Thessaloniki was a natural fit. The 30-year-old used to run a family textile business in Damascus that employed about 100 workers. His journey to Europe stopped at Idomeni but he’s still hoping to join his wife and 2-year-old daughter in Munich, Germany, through the European Union’s slow-moving relocation scheme.

“I saw women (in Idomeni) shivering in blankets and that was not a nice thing to see,” he said. “So we started making clothes with the blankets.”

The charity doesn’t distribute the jackets directly but passes them on to other aid groups in return for donations, using any money raised for skills-training programs for refugees and projects to take them out of camps and place them in apartments. It also sells the coats to walk-ins, like resident Katerina Tsolakidou.

“We really liked the idea of re-using the blankets from Idomeni,” she said after picking up a coat. “It gives the refugees something to do. So instead of spending the money somewhere else, it’ll be put to good use here.”

syrian_refugees_winter_coat_2 syrian_refugees_winter_coat_3 syrian_refugees_winter_coat_4 syrian_refugees_winter_coat_5

Article from: https://apnews.com/6d5e1d5a89a840a88c6b5c8cca19e89b

 

Advertisements

Refugees brave rain surging river to flee teeming Idomeni camp

Defying E.U., Hundreds of Migrants Enter Macedonia From Greece

SKOPJE, Macedonia — Hundreds of migrants braved a fast-moving river to cross from Greece into Macedonia on Monday, defying efforts by European officials to stop people fleeing war and desperation from traveling through the Balkans to Germany and other destinations.

At least three people — two women and a man, all around 20 — drowned when trying to cross the border, and four people traveling with them were hospitalized, according to humanitarian groups in the area.

The border had been effectively sealed since last week, when Macedonia, along with Croatia, Serbia and Slovenia, said it would no longer allow migrants to pass through on their way north.

The result has been growing pressure at the Greek-Macedonian border, where an estimated 12,000 to 14,000 migrants have been stuck in increasingly desperate conditions, including an outbreak of hepatitis A.

On Monday, the border finally gave way, at least temporarily. Hundreds of asylum seekers marched west from a squalid camp near the Greek village of Idomeni and waded into the Suva Reka, forming human chains to pass infants and toddlers over the rushing river to Macedonia.

The three people who drowned were Afghans, humanitarian groups working in the area said. Although Afghanistan is a poor and war-ravaged country, many Afghans are considered to have only a slim chance of being granted asylum after the European Union categorized them last month as economic migrants. Syrians and many Iraqis who are fleeing civil war and the threat of Islamic extremists have an easier case for asylum in Europe.

European Union officials, determined to avoid a repeat of last year, when the asylum system all but collapsed, agreed to a political deal with Turkey last week to stop migrants from pouring into southeastern Europe.

Under the deal, Turkey would receive financial aid and political consideration in exchange for preventing migrants, mostly Syrian, from risking their lives to cross the Aegean Sea. European officials would assess the asylum applications of Syrian refugees — and directly resettle those whose applications are approved — from refugee camps in Turkey.

The terms of the deal are to be hashed out in Brussels this week.

The authorities in Skopje, the capital of Macedonia, did not provide an official comment on the situation Monday, but they were said to be considering forcing the migrants back to Idomeni, across the Greek border. Doing so could be politically damaging for Macedonia, a tiny country that was part of the former Yugoslavia and that has been trying since 2005 to join the European Union.

Assad War Crimes Syria

Assad regime war crimes in Syria

Bashar al-Assad regime crimes against humanity

Assad torture syrian civilians

Assad barrel bombing Syrian Civilians Syria

Assad war tribunal crimes against civilians syria

Assad war criminal torture civilians to death

Assad daily torture protestors

Assad syria war crimes against Syrian Children

Assad massacre civilians in Syria

Assad syria bombing innocent civilian men women children

Assad regime mafia war crimes

Article from: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/03/15/world/europe/european-refugee-crisis.html?smid=tw-nytimesworld&smtyp=cur&_r=0

Syrian Refugees Walking on Slovenia Croatia Border

Bashar al-Assad: Syrian exodus is a “self-cleaning: provess of the State!

Refugees on Slovenia-Croatia border – drone video footage

syria_assad_putin_obama_424

syria_assad_putin_obama_423

syria_assad_putin_obama_422

syria_assad_putin_obama_420

syria_assad_putin_obama_414

syria_assad_putin_obama_413

syria_assad_putin_obama_409

syria_assad_putin_obama_404

syria_assad_putin_obama_400

syria_assad_putin_obama_399

#AssadCrimes #PutinCrimes #barrelbombs #RussianAirstrikes #bombing #shelling #SyrianRefugees #RefugeesCrisis

Safe Passage for Syrian Refugees

Safe Passage: An Open Letter to U.S. President Barack Obama & Congressional Leaders
October 01, 2015

life_jacket_final_1_0

The lifejacket pictured here belonged to one of more than 16,000 people rescued on the Mediterranean Sea by Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) teams since May. This lifejacket, and the person who wore it, are symbols not only of a chaotic and dangerous world, but also of the failure of United Nations member states to meet their obligations to care for, extend safe passage to, and consider the asylum claims of those who fear for their safety from violence and oppression.

People don’t abandon their homes because they want to, and they know the risks they will face on their journeys. It is out of desperation that they flee war and torture, misery, poverty, and persecution. While delivering emergency medical care across a wide range of countries and continents, Doctors Without Borders sees firsthand the horrific conditions and suffering that drive people to risk their lives for the chance of a better and safer future. In northern Jordan, for example, which only a lucky few of the Syrians wounded daily in besieged areas in and around Damascus (and elsewhere) can reach to access medical care; in northern Afghanistan, where hundreds of people injured in current fighting are pouring into our trauma center in Kunduz; in the Domeez refugee camp in northern Iraq, where food vouchers were recently cut by two-thirds; and in Kenya, where Somali refugees face the threat of violence and forcible return.

We have also established projects providing health care to refugees in several European Union countries, and we have been running search and rescue operations in the Mediterranean. Our staff therefore has a unique perspective of what happens—physically, psychologically, morally—to people in need when safer countries slam their doors shut, while public policy and debate focus on economic fears, deterrence, and dehumanizing discourse about “the other.”

This crisis has rightly shocked the world. But the harrowing scenes we have all seen are not confined to Europe and the Middle East. More than 60 million people have been uprooted by conflict and chaos around the world today. From stateless Rohingyas fleeing persecution in Myanmar and adrift on the Andaman Sea, to families driven from their homes by wars in South Sudan and Central African Republic, to people escaping violence and extortion in Central America—we are witnessing a global crisis that is fundamentally challenging the willingness of the international community to uphold its moral responsibilities to other human beings.

The United States has a proud tradition of welcoming refugees, and it has apportioned billions of dollars in aid and assistance to lands around the world affected by armed conflicts. But the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Antonio Guterres, has urged the US and other attendees of the UN General Assembly in New York to do more, to play a greater, more active, and more compassionate role in the ongoing refugee and migrant crises in Europe, Africa, Asia, and North and Central America. What better backdrop than the world’s largest gathering of international leaders for the United States to once more offer additional humanitarian support for people struggling to find safety, increase the number of asylum claims it approves (including for civilians wounded or tortured in conflict), and further ease cumbersome refugee application processes so the most vulnerable can easily apply?

President Obama: You took steps in this direction when you addressed the UN General Assembly this past Monday. But announcing an intent to accept a certain number of refugees falls far short of truly addressing the suffering faced by millions fleeing violence and oppression.

More than simply living up to obligations as a signatory to the 1967 protocol on refugees—and its own proud history of providing shelter to millions of foreign-born men, women, and children—the United States should take additional actions to ensure hope, dignity, and humanitarian assistance for those uprooted by war and strife. A courageous, committed United States can once again rise to the occasion by making its voice heard, showing resolve, and joining the European states that have opened their borders to large numbers of people in need of refuge.

By taking action and showing solidarity, the United States can reaffirm its commitment to refugees the world over and can set an example to other governments that have been unable to come to terms with the challenge at hand. This could be a step towards dismantling recently erected barriers to safe passage, which only drive those forced from their homes to take ever more dangerous routes in search of sanctuary.

The United States should encourage UN member states to ensure that lifesaving and basic needs are met and that humanitarian appeals are fully funded, reversing the shortfalls and cutbacks that have sadly become the norm in humanitarian crises. Beyond this week’s meeting in New York, we hope America’s political leaders will commit themselves to once again placing the country at the heart of efforts to find solutions to this global crisis, as it was when past generations of immigrants and refugees found shelter and opportunity in this land. The United States can make an essential difference by ensuring safe passage for people driven from their homes and by working to make the need for their harrowing journeys obsolete.

Doctors Without Borders has also encouraged European leaders to do more, and we readily admit that we do not have all the answers. But we see the medical and psychological consequences of the current situation, and we must bear witness to the tragic human impact of a global system that shuts out people seeking to escape violence, poverty, and misery—people who, like many Americans, past, present, and future, seek only a safe place for themselves and their families.
—Jason Cone, Executive Director, MSF-USA

Article from: http://www.doctorswithoutborders.org/article/safe-passage-open-letter-us-president-barack-obama-congressional-leaders?utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter&utm_campaign=social

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad Daily Atrocities


Published on Dec 24, 2012

bashar al-assad in syria kill children

assad bashar in syria kill 26,000 Syrianchildren

assad bashar syrian regimekill children

assad bashar syria soldier kill children

assad bashar shabiha syria kill children

assad bashar syrian government kill children

assad bashar in syria killing innocent children

Angelina Jolie- Everyone must help Syrian refugees

UN Special Envoy Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt with Foreign Secretary William Hague at the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict.

Angelina Jolie Pitt, one of the world’s best actresses and a humanitarian, is using her celebrity status for a good cause, and that is to urge everyone to help Syrian refugees. She is using her place, as a special envoy, at the United Nations’ refugee agency to influence people to help the displaced war victims.

In her heartfelt and emotional op-Ed in The Times UK written with Arminka Helic, a former refugee and now a member of the House of Lords, she pleaded to help families that are fleeing the war first, over economic migrants.

“At no time in recent history has there been a greater need for leadership to deal with the consequences and causes of the global refugee crisis,” the actress wrote in the piece last Monday.

Jolie Pitt has spent some time with a Syrian refugee family earlier this year during a humanitarian trip. She said that the war in Syria has made a lot of people suffer. “Syrians are fleeing barrel bombs, chemical weapons, rape and massacres. Their country has become a killing field,” the award-winning actress said.

The actress has worked with the UNHCR since early 2000s, and urged political leaders to take responsibility, even if it’s not part of their nation’s geography. Jolie Pitt said that it doesn’t matter what culture, ethnicity, or religion a person believes in, but what is important is humanity’s core values and rights.

The 40-year-old actress added that the “out of sight, out of mind” attitude is just unacceptable now, especially with what is happening in Syria. She asked other countries in the world, not just those in Europe, to take part in finally resolving the Syrian crisis. Jolie Pitt also encourages people not to stigmatize the refugees, especially those countries who have taken migrants in.

Finally, the actress also suggested that the United Nations Security Council should go and visit the region and come up with a long-term resolution to these conflicts.

syria_assad_angelina_jolie_35

syria_assad_angelina_jolie_34

syria_assad_angelina_jolie_33

syria_assad_angelina_jolie_32

syria_assad_angelina_jolie_31

syria_assad_angelina_jolie_30

syria_assad_angelina_jolie_29

syria_assad_angelina_jolie_28

syria_assad_angelina_jolie_27

syria_assad_angelina_jolie_26

syria_assad_angelina_jolie_25

Article from: http://www.christianpost.com/news/angelina-jolie-everyone-must-help-syrian-refugees-144933/

The massacre of Douma by Assad regime on Aug 16-2015 part VI

A picture say a thousand words! Syria Bashar al-Assad and his regime disregard human lifes!

UN urged to demand halt to Syria air strikes. More than 70 nations sign letter to UN General Assembly to demand end to deadly attacks, especially use of barrel bombs.

Douma massacre disregard human life by Assad regime

Syria douma market bombed by Assad regime

Assad Missles hit Douma market place

Douma extermination by assad

Bomb Douma market palce by assad

Assad mass murdered civilian in Douma Syria

Douma deadliest attack by Assad regime

Save Douma extermination from assad

Save Douma Save syria from assad airstrike

Douma market targeted by Assad regime air forces

%d bloggers like this: