• Incertitude, long wait and negative decisions on international protection are part of daily suffer of asylum seekers

    Granting international protection in Croatia is becoming longer and harder. EU policies have made it impossible to access EU territories, safely and legally. Despite the fact that there are numerous refugees fleeing from war and catastrophes of different kinds. And if they succeed to access one of the Member States it often results in moving them from one to another state. Finally after a long period of wait and incertitude, that sometimes lasts for more than a year, majority receives negative decisions of institutions to their international protection claims. Although many have already started their integration process, it is expected from them to leave Croatia. Due to these reasons, at least 50 has left Croatia recently, including families with minor children, hoping safety will be waiting somewhere else.

    Last week, the asylum seeker from Porin reception centre in Zagreb tried to commit suicide. Fortunately, that was prevented. Along with the barriers built by the system, common problem is lack of psychological support for people who have been waiting, who have lost their hope and who have been discouraged and feel unease in coping with cruel reality. For most of them it is immensely hard to cope with the fact that safe place, where they could open a new page of their lives, is not going to be found soon. We would like to emphasise that unfortunate occurrence of last week was rather unethically covered by the media driven by sensationalism rather then portraying the bigger picture and stepping out of individualisation and “psyhologisation” of the particular act.

    After a year long process of collecting information and monitoring of state of detention of migrants in Croatia, Centre for Peace Studies has released the Report on detention and imprisonment of foreigners in the Republic of Croatia: Purpose and Conditions of Detention of Foreigners in the Reception Centre for Foreigners in 2016 (Croatian version: Izvještaj o detenciji i pritvaranju stranaca u Republici Hrvatskoj: Svrha i uvjeti detencije stranaca tijekom 2016. godine u Prihvatnom centru za strance). During each visit, CPS talked to employees of this centre in Ježevo (close to Zagreb) as well as to migrants detained. Besides CPS, JRS (Jezuit Refugee Service), HPC (Croatian Law Centre) and IOM (International Organisation for Migration) pay regular visits to this centre. Therefore, CPS reports integrates their experiences that were collected through interviews. Fundamental stand point of the CPS in this matter is that NO ONE DESERVES AND SHOULD BE DETAINED OR HAVE LIMITED RIGHT TO MOVEMENT FOR NOT HAVING PAPERS/DOCUMENTS.

    A few local information:

    • The Friend of the Earth Croatia and CPS held workshop on approaches to empowerment of refugees. The workshop was held within the ‘School of Sustainability’.
    • Two workshops under title ‘Exchange of good practices of integration in local communities’ were held in Rijeka and Split. Participants had an opportunity to learn through sharing experiences from other Croatian communities as well as from Netherlands and Great Britain. Workshop were organised by the CPS and the Initiative Welcome.
    • Football club Zagreb 041 came to the end of a very successful season. We were honoured to observe and support their work through promotion of antifascism and antiracism idea.

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