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On this page:
- New arrivals
- Initial registration and asylum processing
- Reception conditions
- Child protection
- Legal, social and policy responses
- Hate speech and violent crime
- Stakeholders interviewed in June 2017 (highlights and focus section)
See also the June 2017 focus section on community policing >>
Since November 2016, FRA’s monthly reports have highlighted key developments in 14 Member States: Austria, Bulgaria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Slovakia, Spain and Sweden. This month’s highlights are published alongside a focus section on community policing.
External land and sea borders
Arrivals in Hungary again increased, with more than 410 persons (150 in April) apprehended in the territory or upon trying to cross the border irregularly; in line with the extended border control policy, all were transferred to outside the transit zone. In spite of the new fence technology, the number of persons the police prevented from crossing the border irregularly increased significantly – to 280, compared to 30 in April.
In Bulgaria, some 410 persons were apprehended at the borders (100) and within the territory (310); most of the persons trying to enter from Turkey came from Syria.
Arrivals by small boat in Spain appeared to be increasing, with some 690 persons arriving at the Andalusian coastline; three persons reached Melilla by swimming. Moroccan Coast Guards intercepted three small boats with some 110 persons.
A crowd of 300 persons tried to climb the fence in Melilla, Spain; some 120 succeeded and were brought to the centre for temporary stay (CETI). Some organisations indicate that many migrants were injured by Moroccan police and 20 were hospitalised, according to the Delegation of Migrations at Nador. At least seven persons were reportedly pushed back by the Spanish Civil Guard, according to the Jesuit Refugee Service. Three Civil Guard officers were injured in the operation.
The NGO Walking Borders reported that some 390 persons travelling on small boats, including more than 120 reported children, died trying to reach the southern border of Spain between September 2015 and 31 December 2016; only 22 were identified. The NGO claims that many deaths occur due to late activation of rescue operations due to deficient cooperation between Moroccan and Spanish police and rescue authorities.
Some 270 persons, mostly citizens from the Ukraine, were apprehended in Slovakia both at borders and inside the territory. The border police apprehended 17 persons from Vietnam who were travelling in a van – including ten unaccompanied children, who were placed into the children’s home in Medzilaborce.
Internal borders and airports
Arrivals in Sweden were on par with previous months, totalling some 1,770 asylum seekers. They included more than 560 children, some 100 of them unaccompanied.
In Paris, France, one migrant trying to reach the United Kingdom died as he came into contact with a wire on top of a train.
Arrivals in Austria remained at a level of some 2,120 persons, mainly from Nigeria, Afghanistan, Syria, Pakistan and Morocco.
Some 300 persons arrived in Denmark, according to police estimates based on data collected in two districts.
The European Commission reported that some 5,710 asylum applicants had been relocated from Italy by 12 May, primarily to Germany, Norway, Finland, Switzerland and the Netherlands, of 11,794 places formally pledged and 34,953 committed, according to Council Decision 2016/946/EU. During May, some 1,340 asylum applicants were relocated from Greece, primarily to Germany, Finland and Norway.
At the border
Several associations in France have criticised the plan to open a “satellite” courtroom in the waiting area of Roissy Charles de Gaulle airport as access for lawyers will be difficult. The Public Defender of Rights plans to check the conditions guaranteeing procedural safeguards as well as the public nature and fairness of hearings at the courtroom.
Polish border guards registered fewer than 110 applications for international protection covering some 210 persons, mainly from Russia and the Ukraine. NGOs continued to report that persons seeking international protection are systematically refused entry at border crossing points.
The Greek Asylum Service registered some 4,080 asylum applications, primarily from Pakistan, Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq.
Asylum applications in Hungary remained at a low level (some 210), as filing applications is possible only in one of the two transit zones, where admission is limited to 5 per day. Civil society organisations continued to raise concerns about the limited opening hours of the transit zones. NGOs reported that the recognition rate for persons from war and terror-torn countries remained extremely low.
The French NGO Forum Réfugiés-Cosi reported that migrants reaching the French-Italian border are not informed of the possibility to apply for asylum and that almost all of the 36,790 persons apprehended in the Alpes-Maritimes Department in 2016 (95 %) were returned to Italy.
Some 270 persons applied for asylum in Bulgaria, including some 85 children.
Asylum applications in Germany decreased by more than 26 % compared to March, to some 14,850 in April. Since the beginning of 2017, more than 75 % of all applicants have been under 30, nearly 43 % children, and more than 20 % under four years old. Initial registrations of persons in need of international protection also decreased – by 3,000, to some 12,000 in April.
The number of appeals against negative asylum decisions in Germany significantly increased – to some 97,000 during the first quarter of 2017. Meanwhile, an internal investigation by the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees concluded that nearly 1 in 2 (45 %) positive decisions were not adequately documented.
Sponsoring asylum seekers may entail high costs as sponsors’ guarantees are generally considered to remain valid even if asylum is granted, according to the German Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs responding to a parliamentarian question; exceptions may, however, be possible in individual cases. This is in line with a Federal Administrative Court ruling from early 2017, although an administrative court in Wiesbaden previously agreed with the assumption that the guarantee expires after asylum is granted.
In Finland, some 480 persons – including more than 140 children – applied for asylum. Based on interviews with staff of the Immigration Service, the media reported concerns over the quality of asylum decisions, including the distribution of negative asylum decisions within the Immigration Service as model templates; units seeking to make quality decisions being criticised for their slower pace; and celebrating large numbers of negative decisions. The administrative court overturned or returned to the Immigration Service a third of all decisions, which constitutes an increase over the past two years, forcing many asylum seekers to rely on court processes. Further deficiencies were reported concerning sensitivity to LGBTI issues and interpretation.
While asylum applications claiming persecution based on sexual orientation have steadily increased in Spain, the LGBT State Federation has noted incidents of LGBTI-phobia in accommodation facilities, as well as decisions denying protection and instructing applicants to return to their home country and hide their homosexuality.
In Poland, NGOs have reported deficiencies in informing asylum seekers about the procedure, inaccurate translations during interviews and a lack of systematic legal assistance due to funding gaps; vulnerabilities are not recognised on time and thus not taken into account during the procedure.
The number of asylum applications in Austria has remained stable at some 500 to 550 applications per week, mainly from persons from Syria and Afghanistan. The backlog of pending applications is expected to be reduced as staff of the new offices of the Federal Office for Asylum is about to finish their training.
In the Netherlands, some 2,870 persons arrived and applied for asylum in April; a 13 % decrease compared to March. Applicants come primarily from Syria and Eritrea and include some 220 stateless persons.
In Denmark, some 290 persons applied for asylum – mainly from Syria, Eritrea and Morocco, and including many children.
Some 470 persons returned from Greece with voluntary return assistance, including five unaccompanied children. Some 920 persons were returned forcibly.
The press reported that Italy returned some 40 Nigerian citizens to Lagos, Nigeria, without allowing them to apply for asylum as the relevant form was not available in the reception centre in Agrigento (Sicily), according to their lawyer; two were reportedly returned to the centre before boarding the plane because the flight lacked sufficient seating.
The Italian Minister of Interior announced plans to accelerate returns to northern African countries and negotiate with third countries the readmission of their citizens.
Police in Milan, Italy, carried out several checks at the central railway station to identify irregular migrants. During one operation, 52 persons were apprehended, 12 of whom were returned to their countries of origin based on public security reasons; 14 were detained pending identification; and the others were released as they regularly resided in Italy. Several associations criticised these operations. Police in Milan accompanied an ambulance called by an injured migrant to an occupied building and apprehended 19 irregular migrants. NGOs expressed concern, stating that such operations discourage access to emergency healthcare.
NGOs in Hungary have been concerned about application of the extended border control policy, which has led to persons being returned to outside of the transit zones, even if they did not arrive from Serbia. The Interior Ministry denied accusations of collective expulsions and incidents of violence against asylum seekers in response to NGO reports asking for an investigation of violence against asylum seekers and for a commitment to human rights by the police and the newly recruited and insufficiently trained ‘border hunter’ unit.
NGOs in Austria, Germany and Sweden continued to express concerns over returns to Afghanistan. Sweden returned 15 young Afghans hours after a terror attack in Kabul.
Several NGOs in Germany have called for stopping returns to Afghanistan. A return flight to Afghanistan was suspended as a car bomb exploded near the German embassy in Kabul.
The NGO Pro Asyl in Germany criticised proactive return counselling, provided to asylum seekers early on or immediately upon arrival, as coercive and for treating return – voluntary or forced – like a foregone conclusion. Some 2,100 staff from support organisations and academia signed a note in protest of a letter from the Bavarian Ministry of Social Affairs threatening to reduce funding for organisations counselling rejected asylum seekers on legal remedies and return issues. The Bavarian Refugee Council also requested clarification.
Facilities on some Greek islands remained severely overcrowded, accommodating more than 13,930 persons – significantly exceeding the official capacity of 8,658 places.
Some 90 asylum seekers, primarily families, were transferred from Lesvos, Chios and Samos to a renovated former children’s home in Ioannina on the mainland.
In mainland Greece, more than 2,620 persons were held in detention pending removal; the majority came from Pakistan and Algeria.
In Italy, the Ministry of Interior informed regional authorities of the location of repatriation centres, which should be operational by the end of July 2017. Demonstrations took place in Sardinia against the opening of a repatriation centre, demanding further efforts to tackle local unemployment as a precondition for integrating migrants.
In the Hungarian transit zones, asylum seekers – including children above the age of 14 – continued to live in shipping containers surrounded by high razor fences for the entire duration of their asylum procedures; they may only leave the transit zone to Serbia.
Spanish authorities admitted that healthcare at CIEs is inadequate because there are no separate units for detainees with physical or mental illnesses; however, they rejected a protocol proposed by the Ombudsperson for providing specialised psychological assistance to survivors of shipwrecks.
In Spain, a judge controlling the CIEs of Algeciras and Tarifa ordered the centres to implement 31 “urgent measures”, including mandatory checks of tuberculosis, HIV, syphilis, hepatitis A, B and C, sarcoptosis, pediculosis, scabies and intestinal parasites; the removal of bars from detainees’ rooms; and the direct referral of injuries by the medical service to the court. The CIE in Algeciras continues to lack heating and air conditioning, and humidity problems persist despite investments into maintenance.
In Poland, asylum applicants – including families with children and victims of torture – continue to be placed in detention often lasting for at least 60 days, as reported by NGOs.
In Austria, the number of persons held in pre-removal detention at Vordernberg increased to about 120.
Safety and material conditions
The municipality in Larissa, Greece announced that it will inform home owners interested in renting their property to refugees of the UNHCR-rent assistance programme covering rent and utility bills. The programme aims to reduce the number of asylum seekers living in the nearby centre of Koutsochero. The municipality of Trikala decided to participate in the assistance programme, planning to host some 400 refugees in 70 houses.
Following the arrest of a criminal association exploiting asylum seekers hosted in local reception centres in farming companies in Cosenza (Calabria), Italy, the Ministry of Interior decided to carry out 2,130 inspections at all Italian reception centres in the coming months to assess the adequacy of reception conditions.
The police in Crotone (Calabria), Italy, arrested 68 staff managing the reception centre in Isola Capo Rizzuto, on accusation of mafia association, extortion, criminal possession of a weapon, fraud, embezzlement of public funds and theft of some EUR 32 million intended for refugees. A previous inspection of the facility in 2013, managed by the same charity organisation, found some 70 unaccompanied children accommodated in aircraft hangars with two toilets.
The Italian Anti-corruption Authority recalled the steps taken to establish an administrative regulatory framework ensuring transparent management of reception centres before the Parliamentary Inquiry Commission on the Reception, Identification and Expulsion System, and on Migrants’ Detention Conditions and Earmarked Public Resources.
The Prefect of Milan, Italy and mayors of 76 nearby municipalities agreed to identify adequate facilities for the location of reception centres.
Police in Mineo (Sicily), Italy arrested a Pakistani citizen for sexually assaulting a Nigerian woman hosted at the local reception centre; such assaults allegedly happen frequently due to continuing overcrowding at the centre.
As a result of Hungary’s extended border policy, fewer than 40 refugees have been staying at the country’s open refugee camps, although they have a capacity of more than 480 beds.
In Calais, France, some 100 returned to the former site of the camp, bringing the total number of migrants to around 700 in the municipality, according to the service centre for migrants. In Grande-Synthe, some 250 migrants returned to the camp following a fire in April. NGOs continued to criticise the lack of accommodation facilities in the North of France, which is particularly detrimental to children. Poor hygiene conditions and lack of drinking water have been reported from the sites. In Calais, migrants have no access to showers because the NGO Secours Catholic had to remove its shower containers in the absence of authorisation from the municipality, which is required to keep containers beyond three months. Strong police presence has prevented migrants from meeting organisations that distribute food and drinking water. The National Consultative Committee on Human Rights criticised the increasing intimidation of people who support refugees.
In Paris, France, large informal settlements have developed as many Afghans, primarily rejected asylum seekers arriving from Germany, joined Sudanese and Eritreans waiting outside the humanitarian camp to submit their requests for asylum. The police dismantled the informal settlements, transferring some 1610 persons, including 75 unaccompanied children or single women, to reception sites in the Île-de-France region.
The police in Sweden are concerned about the emergence of areas, especially in the region of Gothenburg, where criminal groups intimidate residents, including through violence against witnesses, plaintiffs and persons reporting crimes, making it difficult or impossible for the police to carry out their duties. These areas are characterised by a parallel social structure, extremism, residents travelling to conflict areas to participate in the conflicts, and a high level of criminality. Undocumented and other vulnerable persons run greater risks of being exploited or getting involved in criminal activities.
Healthcare and basic services
As contracts for NGO healthcare providers are about to expire in Greece, healthcare will be provided primarily through the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
Several NGOs in Sweden reported that the temporary restrictions on obtaining a residence permit have negatively affected the health and ability to integrate into Swedish society of persons with temporary residence permits. Unaccompanied children continue to suffer from anxiety and stress due to the continuing age re-registration and the long duration of asylum procedures.
A humanitarian organisation in Greece faces allegations of sexual exploitation of beneficiaries and corruption by some staff members; the organisation committed itself to fully cooperating with the investigation launched by the Supreme Court Prosecutor.
In view of alarmingly high rates of gender-related violence, Doctors of the World Greece have attached particular importance to the basic and mandatory training of their staff on ways of dealing with gender-based violence.
Activists launched a national campaign in support of a young Moroccan university student who is suffering from mental illness and has lived in Italy for ten years. He was apprehended at the canteen of the University of Palermo and has been detained in the expulsion centre of Caltanissetta, where adequate medical assistance is not provided and his health condition is dramatically worsening.
The Cordelia Foundation in Hungary continued to urge the authorities to pay more attention to possible victims of torture or trauma upon registration and in detention facilities.
Reception facilities in Slovakia urgently need mental healthcare services, according to NGOs that are counselling and identifying trauma in many asylum seekers and refugees.
The Parliamentary Ombudsman in Denmark criticised the blanket policy of separating married couples involving at least one child without assessing the individual case. In response to further criticism, the Immigration and Integration Minister justified the instructions sent to the Immigration Service, maintaining that the need for an individual case assessment had been included in oral guidance to the Immigration Board and not called into question.
Some 2,150 unaccompanied children were estimated to be in Greece, while only 1,294 places are available in special accommodation facilities.
Human Rights Watch released a report on delays and barriers to family reunification affecting older refugees and asylum seekers stranded in Greece, often for several months. Authorities in Greece denied having an agreement with Germany to limit Dublin transfers for family reunification to 70 per month, while confirming in a letter to the German Interior Minister that family reunification transfers will slow down as agreed.
The Greek Ombudsman wrote to the Greek authorities concerning obstacles to family reunification and relocation procedures for children.
In Greece, guidelines for the registration of children in refugee school programmes offering additional support classes for non-Greek speakers have been published and distributed.
According to the Special Commissioner for Missing People in Italy, the number of unaccompanied children absconding from reception centres rose by more than 27 % during 2016, amounting to nearly 28,000 children at the end of the year.
The Italian government issued guidelines on the role and functions of voluntary guardians, established by law in April 2017, which give children a right to be heard concerning the appointment of a voluntary guardian.
Terre des Hommes published guidelines for protecting the mental health, and promoting the social and health wellbeing, of migrant children at reception facilities in Italy.
In Hungary, only children below the age of 14 are transferred to children’s homes, have access to child protection services and may be appointed a guardian, whereas children above this age are transferred to the transit zone. The Hungarian Helsinki Committee reported that age is often assessed incorrectly and children below 14 are held in the transit zones, where guardians are not appointed for unaccompanied children; very young children can also be held in the transit zones with their family. In response to criticism from the European People’s Party, the government is considering introducing DNA testing for age assessments, the accuracy of which is contested; children found to be below 18 years old pursuant to such tests would be allowed to stay in special open camps.
In Germany, some 43,840 unaccompanied children have been under the protection of youth welfare offices, in addition to some 18,000 young adults.
The German government presented a concept for establishing two homes for about 100 children in Morocco with the aim of preparing the conditions for returning unaccompanied children, primarily “voluntary” and delinquent returnees. Fear of being returned is likely to push young people into hiding and possibly illegal activities, according to the Federal Association of Unaccompanied Minor Refugees.
In April, asylum applicants in the Netherlands include some 100 unaccompanied children, primarily from Eritrea, Afghanistan, Morocco and Guinea.
In Sweden, the National Board of Forensic Medicine issued a first statement on age assessment of unaccompanied asylum-seeking children, after taking over this task from the general health care system in March. In 442 of 581 cases, the asylum seekers were assessed to be 18 years or older; in 134 cases, the applicants were assessed as clearly being children.
In Denmark, some 40 % of arrivals (some 290 in total) were children, including 50 unaccompanied children, mainly from Morocco, Afghanistan and Libya.
In line with the Council of Europe GRETA committee of experts, the Ombudsperson in Spain called for stronger mechanisms for identifying and protecting child victims of trafficking, as numbers of identified victims remain low.
In Spain, a protocol on children was revised due to the high-level terrorism alert, allowing the police to completely strip search children in certain circumstances, including against their will and using handcuffs; reference to the respect of fundamental rights during the search was removed.
Family reunification has remained practically unattainable in Poland, according to NGOs, due to restrictive deadlines, limitations on spouses and underage children, and high costs.
The ECtHR communicated a first case (B.J. v. Greece) concerning the implementation of the EU-Turkey Joint Statement on Syrian citizens, and will start to assess whether the procedure followed was in line with the prohibition of torture (Article 3) and the right to an effective remedy (Article 12); if the detention and reception conditions in Turkey constituted degrading treatment in the event of return (Article 3); and if detention in the police station of Mytilene (Lesvos), Greece, for one and a half months violated Article 3.
The Council of State in Greece rejected an appeal challenging the constitutionality and independence of the Greek appeal committees, which was based on the judges deciding on the composition of the appeal committees also reviewing their rulings.
The Italian Council of State confirmed that Hungary cannot be considered a safe country for Dublin returns.
According to the Federal Social Court in Germany, social benefits may be reduced to mere physical subsistence if asylum seekers refuse to cooperate in obtaining their passports.
As elections in Austria have been brought forward to October, it is unclear whether part II of the Alien Law Amendment Act will be adopted before the elections. NGOs criticised the draft for allowing coercive detention if persons obliged to return do not cooperate.
The District Court of The Hague confirmed the decision to return an asylum seeker from Iraq for not being able to prove his homosexuality as he did not refer to or reflect on the development of homosexual feelings. The case was covered extensively by Dutch media. The NGO LGBT Asylum Support has asked for a committee to be set up to assess individual asylum applications based on sexual orientation. Members of parliament have followed up this suggestion and also inquired about the instructions used during interviews with LGBTI asylum seekers.
Sweden amended its Act on temporary restrictions of the possibility to obtain a residence permit to allow unaccompanied children enrolled in upper secondary schools to get their temporary residence permits extended so that they can finish school and find employment within six months.
The Danish Refugee Appeals Board confirmed decisions to withdraw subsidiary protection in two cases concerning persons from Somalia, including a family with small children born in Denmark. This, according to an NGO, despite continuous instability and merely slight improvements in the security situation noted in the country of origin information. NGOs have expressed concerned about the withdrawal of protection in future cases affecting refugees who originate from areas controlled by the militant group Al-Shabaab.
In Italy, the ministers of interior and justice expressed their solidarity with NGOs operating in save-and-rescue operations.
The Italian Senate Defence Commission investigated the contribution of the Italian army to controlling migration and the impact of NGOs. According to the commission, the chief of the Italian Navy underlined that there is no interference by NGOs with the activities of the navy. The Public Prosecutor suggested that the judiciary police could embark on NGOs’ vessels, which NGOs rejected or contested, questioning the effectiveness of such a measure. The commission suggested several other measures, including opening a maritime rescue coordination centre in Libya, tackling the issue concerning the borders of Maltese and Italian save-and-rescue areas, rationalising the presence of NGOs’ vessels, setting up an accreditation system for NGOs, and allowing authorities to intervene promptly after save-and-rescue operations.
Together with counterparts from Chad, Libya and Niger, the Italian Interior Minister discussed strengthening border checks and setting up reception centres in these countries to stem the flow of migration.
In Hungary, the government proposed a 750-fold increase of the 2018 budget for managing the “mass migration crisis” compared to the 2017 budget.
The government in Bulgaria launched a public consultation on a draft decision determining the areas in which asylum seekers accommodated in reception centres can move freely without having to request permission from the State Agency for Refugees.
Sweden stopped requiring carriers to check passengers’ identities on busses, trains and passenger ships from Denmark to Sweden and extended internal border controls for six more months, which has led to systematic border checks of trains at Hyllie station, vehicles at Lernacken and harbours in Trelleborg, Helsingborg and Malmö.
The Green Party in Sweden, a coalition partner in the government, proposed having asylum applications from unaccompanied children processed based on their age at the time of registration rather than their age at the end of the procedure, and re-examining negative asylum decisions concerning unaccompanied children, who arrived in 2015, based on their age at arrival; the Prime Minister of the main party in government (Social Democrats) did not support the proposal.
The Migration Office in Slovakia has prepared a guide for socio-cultural orientation for newly arrived asylum seekers together with IOM, NGOs, UNHCR and migrants from Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia and Syria.
Responses by civil society, local and political actors
15 NGOs urged the Greek government to reverse the current practice of excluding from IOM’s Assisted Voluntary Return programme all asylum seekers on the islands who are appealing a negative asylum decision, forcing those who wish to benefit from the programme to forego their right to appeal.
In Greece, NGOs launched a comprehensive training programme for community interpreters and cultural mediators. Translators Without Borders launched a mobile application providing a glossary for interpreters and other fieldworkers.
The Hungarian Association for Migrants trained volunteers to assist refugees and asylum seekers in transit zones, detention centres and open camps.
The Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights in Poland continued to report that foreigners considered to be a threat to the defence or security of the state do not have access to classified information used as evidence against them and are immediately returned.
Police in Ceuta, Spain, arrested a soccer player at the Ceuta Sports Association for involvement in facilitation. According to the Civil Guard and Maritime Rescue, facilitators have been changing routes due to the effectiveness of the Integrated Surveillance System (SIVE).
20 refugees were resettled from Turkey to Spain; Amnesty International submitted a petition signed by 52,000 persons asking the Spanish government to fulfil its commitment to receive 17,337 persons by 16 September 2017; at the current pace, this would take some 22 years.
In Spain, a book was published on Human Rights and Universal Justice on the southern border, drawing on experiences of refugees, law enforcement, judiciary, legal professionals and NGOs in Melilla.
A survey by the State School Inspection in Slovakia showed that secondary school pupils are least tolerant of migrants and Muslims, compared to tolerance of other groups, such as persons with intellectual disabilities, LGBTI persons, Hungarians or Roma. More than half believe that asylum seekers receive too much support in Slovakia and 84 % oppose accepting further asylum seekers.
In Denmark, political actors discussed the possibility of detaining some asylum seekers accommodated in asylum facilities, or prohibiting them from leaving accommodation at night, in response to a recent assault on a Danish couple, presumably by unaccompanied child asylum seekers.
Two transgender asylum seekers were attacked on the island of Leros, Greece.
The police in La Spezia (Liguria), Italy arrested members of a Nazi group aiming to organise violent raids against migrants.
In response to the debate on the role of NGOs in save-and-rescue operations in Italy, the radical party Forza Nuova (New Force) occupied the external area of the Rome office of the International Organization for Migration. The fascist groups National Movement and Identity Youth protested against NGOs during a conference on geopolitics in the Mediterranean in Prato (Tuscany), Italy. Identity Youth together with a similar Austrian organisation (Identity Movement Austria) tried to block the NGO vessel “SOS Méditerranée” with a small boat.
NGOs and UNHCR in Poland reported pervasive hate speech and an increase in the number of violent crimes motivated by prejudice.
Germany recorded six attacks specifically against asylum seekers in May, including four violent attacks and two attacks against reception and accommodation centres. Although attacks on reception facilities decreased in 2017, the police expect a possible increase in attacks against refugees during the parliamentary election campaign as right-wing activists may intensify their anti-asylum agitation.