HEADLINES

Turkey: Illegally Sending Syrians Back To War Zone

By Nick Tattersall, John Stonestreet (April 1, 2016). Thomson Foundation.

Syrian Kurd child holds a glass of water after he crossed the border between Syria and Turkey near the southeastern town of Suruc in Sanliurfa province, on September 20, 2014. Several thousand Syrian Kurds began crossing into Turkey on September 19 fleeing Islamic State fighters who advanced into their villages, prompting warnings of massacres from Kurdish leaders. Turkey on September 19 reopened its border with Syria to Kurds fleeing Islamic State (IS) militants, saying a “worst-case scenario” could drive as many as 100,000 more refugees into the country. (BULENT KILIC/AFP/Getty Images)

Syrian Kurd child holds a glass of water after he crossed the border between Syria and Turkey near the southeastern town of Suruc in Sanliurfa province, on September 20, 2014. Several thousand Syrian Kurds began crossing into Turkey on September 19 fleeing Islamic State fighters who advanced into their villages, prompting warnings of massacres from Kurdish leaders. Turkey on September 19 reopened its border with Syria to Kurds fleeing Islamic State (IS) militants, saying a “worst-case scenario” could drive as many as 100,000 more refugees into the country. (BULENT KILIC/ AFP/ Getty).

Turkey has illegally returned thousands of Syrians to their war-torn homeland in recent months, highlighting the dangers for migrants sent back from Europe under a deal due to come into effect next week, Amnesty International said on Friday.

Turkey agreed with the EU this month to take back all migrants and refugees who cross illegally to Greece in exchange for financial aid, faster visa-free travel for Turks and slightly accelerated EU membership talks.

Refugees and migrants sit next to their belongings before boarding a bus heading to other parts of the country where they will be accommodated, at the port of Piraeus, near Athens, Greece March 31, 2016. REUTERS/Alkis Konstantinidis

Refugees and migrants sit next to their belongings before boarding a bus heading to other parts of the country where they will be accommodated, at the port of Piraeus, near Athens, Greece March 31, 2016. (Reuters/ Alkis Konstantinidis).

But the legality of the deal hinges on Turkey being a safe country of asylum, which Amnesty said in its report was clearly not the case. It said it was likely that several thousand refugees had been sent back to Syria in mass returns in the past seven to nine weeks, flouting Turkish, EU and international law.

“In their desperation to seal their borders, EU leaders have wilfully ignored the simplest of facts: Turkey is not a safe country for Syrian refugees and is getting less safe by the day,” said John Dalhuisen, Amnesty International’s Director for Europe and Central Asia.

Turkey’s foreign ministry denied Syrians were being sent back against their will. Turkey had maintained an “open door” policy for Syrian migrants for five years and strictly abided by the “non-refoulement” principle of not returning someone to a country where they are liable to face persecution, it said.

“None of the Syrians that have demanded protection from our country are being sent back to their country by force, in line with international and national law,” a foreign ministry official told Reuters.

Several hundred Syrian refugees wait to cross into Turkey at the border in Suruc, Turkey, Sunday, Sept. 21, 2014. Turkey opened its border Saturday to allow in up to 60,000 people who massed on the Turkey-Syria border, fleeing the Islamic militants’ advance on Kobani.(AP Photo/Burhan Ozbilici)

Several hundred Syrian refugees wait to cross into Turkey at the border in Suruc, Turkey, Sunday, Sept. 21, 2014. Turkey opened its border Saturday to allow in up to 60,000 people who massed on the Turkey-Syria border, fleeing the Islamic militants’ advance on Kobani. (Photo: AP/ Burhan Ozbilici).

But Amnesty said testimonies it had gathered in Turkey’s southern border provinces suggested the authorities have been rounding up and expelling groups of around 100 Syrian men, women and children almost daily since the middle of January.

Many of those returned to Syria appear to be unregistered refugees, though the rights group said it had also documented cases of registered Syrians being returned when apprehended while not carrying their papers.

Amnesty also said its research showed the authorities had scaled back the registration of Syrian refugees in the southern border provinces. Those with no registration have no access to basic services such as healthcare and education.

Under the deal with the EU, Turkey is supposed to be taking in migrants returned from Greece on April 4, but uncertainty remains over how many will be sent back, how they will be processed, and where they will be housed.

The aim is to close the main route by which a million migrants and refugees poured across the Aegean Sea to Greece in the last year before heading north, mainly to Germany and Sweden.

The large-scale returns of Syrian refugees we have documented highlight the fatal flaws in the EU-Turkey deal. It is a deal that can only be implemented with the hardest of hearts and a blithe disregard for international law,” Amnesty’s Dalhuisen said.

TRFN: Amnesty says Turkey illegally sending Syrians back to war zone.

Click Picture for a Popular Article

  • The month is also a time of community; it is the custom for Muslims to invite their neighbours and friends to share their evening meal – iftar – and recite special Tarawih prayers in congregation. It is also a time when Muslims try to reconnect with the Qur’an, which they believe is the word of God. However, Children, people who are sick or who have mental illness, elderly people for example do not have to fast.
  • A 29-year-old woman who was raped in October 2015 by peacekeepers stationed in Bambari, Central African Republic. © 2015 Lewis Mudge/Human Rights Watch
  • The Center for Inquiry (CFI) is amongst 17 organizations and two individuals that sent a letter to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry today (January 5, 2016) urging him to press Saudi Arabian King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud to halt the execution of Sheikh Nimr Baqir al-Nimr and several other demonstrators from the country’s marginalized Eastern Province. On October 24 2015, the Saudi Supreme Court ratified the death sentence issued to Sheikh Nimr in October 2014. Since September, the Saudi criminal justice system has also ratified the death sentences of Ali al-Nimr, Dawood al-Marhoon, and Abdullah al-Zaher, three men arrested as minors in 2012 for their protest activity.
  • Faces of the women who had their lives cut short by Pickton.
  • Codepink protesters outside the NRA headquarters, Fairfax, Virginia June 19, 2016. (Photo: CODEPINK).
  • Refugee-girl-cries-as-her-Central-American-shanty-town-is-destroyed-0714-by-Spencer-Platt
  • Yemen is the poorest country in the Arabian peninsula, with more than 40 percent of people living below the poverty line Reuters
  • Documentary: Part One - A Year In Space With Scott Kelly
  • afghan_clinic_bombed
  • Painted on the side of a building in Bristol, southwest England - home of the celebrated graffiti artist Banksy - the image reprises a 1979 photograph of Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev and East German President Erich Honecker kissing, which was later turned into a mural on the Berlin Wall. It was commissioned by pro-EU campaign group "We are Europe" as what they call a warning of things to come if Britons vote to leave the 28-member bloc on June 23, as advocated by both Johnson and Trump, the presumptive Republican candidate in November's U.S. presidential election. Johnson is the "Out" campaign's best-known leader and Trump has said Britain would be "better off without" the EU, which he has blamed for Europe's migration crisis.
  • The remnants of a US drone strike on August 29, 2012 in Khashamir, Yemen. The strike killed three alleged members of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, a policeman, and a cleric who preached against the armed group.
  • People light candles at the scene of a massive car bomb attack in Karada, a busy shopping district where people were shopping for the upcoming Eid al-Fitr holiday, in the center of Baghdad, Iraq, Sunday, July 3, 2016. More than 100 people died Sunday in a car bombing that the Islamic extremist militia group said it carried out, an official of the Iraqi Interior Ministry said.

Click Picture for a Popular Cartoon

  • Victoria's 'Homeless' Drug Addicts
  • Caption this winner sept 1
  • The moment Bruce Jenner realized he was a woman
  • What Donald Would Do!
  • Britney Spears Looking Hot in black leather in Toxic music video. who was sexiest? Britney in Toxic or Taylor Swift in Bad Blood
  • GOP Caption winner first place on AlistairReignBlog.com
  • Donald Trump for President
  • Take Our Poll: Come on in and decide for yourself! Who worked the puffy white shirt best?
  • Includes Meryl Streep's full Golden Globe speech, a peek at her stage performance where she play Donald Trump, SAG Speeches: Ashton Kutcher, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Kerry Washington, Natalie Portman, Lily Tomlin and others, as well as talk show host's comments and interviews. Tied together with indie music and skits of Peter Griffin of Family Guy playing Donald Trump.
  • Donald Trump and I Lama Crazy. alistairreignblog.com
  • Donald Trump and a Cheshire cat have the same smug smile.