Wahid Haider talks about his son’s departure to Italy almost seven years ago without regret or hesitation. Haider has not seen Nayeem, now 30 years old, since he left Nankar in search of better economic prospects, travelling through Romania, where he spent several months, before entering Italy.
As countless refugees arriving on Italy’s shores report torture, extortion and forced labour in Libyan detention centers, many say they never intended to make the journey to Europe until the chaos in Libya left them no other choice.
Human rights groups are calling for a sustainable solution to the migrant crisis in Europe, especially following the dismantling of refugee camps in Paris and Calais, France, over the past two weeks.
Events are being organised around the world to celebrate the 70th
anniversary of the founding of the United Nations, but a recent seminar held in the Austrian capital was not held to applaud the body’s past contributions.
Not even a month has passed since over 700 hundred migrants lost their lives in their attempt to reaching the shores of Italy and the media spotlights have already faded on the island of Sicily, Italy’s southern region and main gateway to Europe.
In the last half-century, people’s lifestyles have changed dramatically. Life expectancy has risen almost everywhere, but this has been accompanied by an increase of so-called non-communicable diseases (NCDs) – such as cardiovascular diseases, cancer, respiratory diseases, and diabetes – causing more and more deaths in all corners of the world.
The ‘West’ is a concept that flourished during the Cold War. Then it was West against East in the form of the Soviet empire. The East was evil against which all democratic countries – read West – were called on to fight.
“The unbearable number of lives lost at sea will only grow if the European Union does not act now to ensure search-and-rescue operations across the Mediterranean,” Human Rights Watch warned Apr. 15.
Since the end of the Cold War, the Mediterranean has become the most lethal of Europe’s barriers against irregular migration, having claimed nearly 20,000 migrant lives in the last two decades.
If ever there was a need to prove that we are faced with a total lack of global governance, the U.N. Climate Summit, extraordinarily called by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Sep. 23, makes a very good case.
‘Mare Nostrum’ – the largest search and rescue immigration operation ever carried out in the Mediterranean Sea – has become an issue of bitter brinkmanship between human rights groups and anti-immigrant lobbies.
His journey started four years ago in Conakry, Guinea. Now that Mamoudou* has finally reached Italy, he hopes this will be his final stop.
With Italy having taken over presidency of the European Union (EU) until December 2014, questions remain regarding Europe’s migration policies as reports of migrants dying at sea while trying to reach Italy regularly make the headlines.
Scientists and local communities are expressing serious concern about the ongoing destruction of Syria’s chemical arsenal on board a vessel in international waters in the Mediterranean Sea.