Country policy and information notes (last updated).
Index number: EUR 44/6272/2017. This report focuses on the dismissal of public servants, among them police officers, teachers, soldiers, doctors, judges, prosecutors and academics, by executive decree issued under the powers of the state of emergency in Turkey, which continues 10 months after it was first introduced. The mass dismissals have been carried out arbitrarily on the basis of vague and generalized grounds of “connections to terrorist organizations”. Dismissed public sector workers have not been given reasons for their dismissal nor do they have an effective means to challenge the decisions.
Index number: EUR 44/6055/2017. Freedom of expression in Turkey is under sustained and increasing attack. Since the failed coup attempt in July 2016, academics, journalists and writers who criticize the government risk criminal investigation and prosecution, intimidation, harassment and censorship. The severity of the Turkish government’s repression of the media is such that it has been described by some as the “death of journalism”.
The degrading conditions on the Greek islands as a result of the European Union’s agreement with Turkey one year ago have led to an alarming rise in self-harm, increased aggression, anxiety and depression among child refugees and migrants, a new report by Save the Children has revealed.
More than 4.7 million refugees have fled Syria, most of them to neighbouring countries including Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey. With 10% of Syrian refugees currently residing in camps, host governments and aid agencies have had to rethink conventional refugee assistance programmes designed for campbased responses. The lives and livelihoods of Syrian refugees: a study of refugee perspectives and their institutional environment in Turkey and Jordan aims to generate better understanding of the lives and livelihoods of Syrian refugees living outside refugee camps in Turkey and Jordan, with a view to finding ways to better support their livelihoods. In doing so, it aims to identify opportunities to support refugees‟ livelihoods through a better understanding of their perspectives and interactions with the many networks, institutions and individuals that shape their livelihoods. This report also tackles some of these challenges by exploring the lives and livelihoods of refugees in two distinct research phases. In the first phase, the report recreates with refugees their „displacement life history‟ in order to understand how their aims, strategies, actions and livelihoods have changed during their displacement, tackling these elements from the perspective of refugees. In the second phase, the report explores the networks and institutions, including host communities, government and local and international organisations, that refugees have engaged with, and the factors that shape this interaction and its outcomes for refugee livelihoods, tackling these from the perspective of the many actors shaping refugee livelihoods.
Index number: EUR 25/5664/2017. In the absence of safe and legal routes into Europe, hundreds of thousands of refugees and migrants have travelled irregularly over the last few years, at considerable risk to their own lives. This has undeniably confronted European leaders with logistical, political and humanitarian challenges. The EU-Turkey deal, agreed in March last year was Europe’s signature response to these challenges. It has certainly stemmed the flow of migrants across the Aegean, but at considerable cost to Europe’s commitment to upholding the basic principles of refugee protection and the lives of the tens of thousands it has trapped on Greek islands. With European leaders touting its success, closing their eyes to its flaws, and seeing in it a blueprint for new migration deals with countries like Libya, Sudan, Niger and many others, this briefing serves as a cautionary tale.
Turkey is the world’s largest host of refugees and asylum-seekers, with the majority – 2.8 million – having fled the conflict in neighboring Syria. Another 290,000 come from other countries, including Afghanistan, Iraq, and Iran. The Turkish government has taken a number of positive steps to improve the lives of Syrians in Turkey, particularly in education and employment, even holding out the possibility for citizenship. Humanitarian actors are primarily focusing their efforts on the needs of the Syrians, but the protection measures available to displaced persons of other nationalities are far fewer and their living conditions are underreported.
The “Silencing Turkey’s Media: The Government’s Deepening Assault on Critical Media,” documents five important components of the crackdown on independent domestic media in Turkey, including the use of the criminal justice system to prosecute and jail journalists on bogus charges of terrorism, insulting public officials, or crimes against the state. Human Rights Watch also documented threats and physical attacks on journalists and media organizations; government interference with editorial independence and pressure on media organizations to fire critical journalists; the government’s takeover or closure of private media companies; and restrictions on access to the airwaves, fines, and closure of critical television stations.
Publisher Asylum Research Consultancy (ARC).
New frictions in Iraq and Syria threaten Ankara and Tehran’s usually peaceful management of their Middle East rivalries. To rebuild trust and avert open conflict, they should coordinate de-escalation, exchange intelligence and designate representatives to open a new channel between their leaders.