29 May 2015

In the 2014 annual report issued this week, JRS Europe reiterated its call for the EU to open the door to people in need of international protection. JRS Europe stressed that 2014 witnessed a three-fold increase in the number of people who sought protection in Europe, compared with 2013, and that among them, numerous fled from Syria, Eritrea, Somalia, Congo, other war-torn countries or oppressive regimes.

In light of these considerations, JRS Europe developed a set of policy recommendations for ensuring that safe and legal routes are in place for asylum seekers to find protection in Europe. In addition, since the Operation Mare Nostrum came to an end in October 2014, JRS has advocated for the establishment of an adequate search and rescue operation in the Mediterranean.

Over the past year, JRS Europe also drew attention to the inadequate reception conditions in some EU member states for asylum seekers, who face destitution in countries, such as Italy and Greece. On this regard, the paper ‘Rescued – What Next?‘, issued in October 2014, well illustrates how asylum seekers in southern Italy wait for lengthy asylum procedures without any perspective of social integration.

Violations of human rights of migrants at the border with the Spanish enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla were also condemned by JRS, and other organisations, during the previous year. JRS Europe, along with other Spanish partners, lobbied the European Commission to take a firm stance on such violations.

The report presents the projects, as well as the advocacy and policy activities implemented by the organisation in Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Malta, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, South-East Europe and the United Kingdom. The annual report also noted the opening of a JRS office in Greece.


This article originally appeared in the ECRE Weekly Bulletin of 29 May 2015. You can subscribe to the Weekly Bulletin here.