lunedì 28 febbraio 2011
AFRICA/LIBIA - Appello di Mons. Martinelli per gli eritrei in Libia: “ieri 2 mila si sono riversati nella chiesa e nei nostri locali chiedendo assiste
Il CIR fa appello urgente in favore dei rifugiati eritrei a Tripoli
Il Consiglio Italiano per i Rifugiati (CIR) fa proprio l’appello urgente lanciato da Monsignor Giovanni Martinelli, vescovo cattolico a Tripoli, per l’evacuazione umanitaria di circa 2000 rifugiati eritrei dalla Libia. I rifugiati eritrei, in maggioranza cattolici, hanno come unico punto di riferimento il Vescovado di Tripoli, nel centro della città, dove ricevono compatibilmente con la situazione contingente anche assistenza materiale. Queste persone, ancor più degli altri cittadini stranieri presenti in Libia, si vedono intrappolate, senza possibilità di rimpatriare e senza possibilità di raggiungere via terra la Tunisia o altri paesi di rifugio e temono per la loro vita.
Il CIR, in costante contatto con Monsignor Martinelli e con la Nunziatura Apostolica di Malta, competente per la Libia , si è rivolto oggi al Consiglio dell’Unione Europea, alla Commissione Europea e al Governo italiano affinché al più presto i rifugiati siano trasferiti in vari Stati dell’Unione Europea, e ha chiesto ai Governi di mettere a disposizione quote per poter procedere tempestivamente al trasferimento da Tripoli.
Indipendentemente dall’evolversi della situazione a Tripoli e nelle aree circostanti, i rifugiati eritrei sono bersagliati in tutti i modi come nemici. Non hanno alcun permesso di residenza e nessun diritto garantito. “Facciamo appello alla solidarietà dell’Italia e degli altri Stati dell’Unione Europea in questo drammatico momento”, dichiara Savino Pezzotta, presidente del CIR.
Il Consiglio Italiano per i Rifugiati ha anche richiesto di attivare la Protezione Temporanea , già prevista dalla Direttiva europea del 2001, affinché gli sfollati arrivati dal Nord Africa in questi giorni in modo spontaneo o organizzato e quanti potranno arrivare in futuro possano subito avere uno status legale, temporaneo appunto, nel territorio dell’Unione Europea, in attesa degli sviluppi nei loro paesi di origine. Questo status viene concesso a gruppi di persone, indipendentemente dalla presentazione di domande di asilo e comunque senza la necessità di esaminarle individualmente.
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UFFICIO STAMPA CIR
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domenica 27 febbraio 2011
UNHCR emergency teams supporting Tunisians and Egyptians to respond to tens of thousands fleeing violence in Libya
Press Releases, 27 February 2011
GENEVA – UNHCR emergency teams are working with Tunisian and Egyptian authorities and NGOs to support close to 100,000 people that have fled the violence in Libya in the past week.
On Saturday the Tunisian Government said that 40,000 people had crossed its borders since 20 February, with an additional 10,000 expected to cross last night. Of this number approximately 18,000 are Tunisian, 15,000 Egyptian, 2,500 Libyan and 2,000 Chinese.
Meanwhile in Egypt the authorities told UNHCR that 55,000 people have crossed the border since 19 February. This includes 46,000 Egyptians, 2,100 Libyans and 6,900 third country nationals, mainly from Asian countries.
"We are committed to assisting Tunisia and Egypt in helping each and every person fleeing Libya," said UN High Commissioner for Refugees, António Guterres. "We call upon the international community to respond quickly and generously to enable these governments to cope with this humanitarian emergency," he added.
Yesterday from the Egyptian border, Sallum, UNHCR crossed into no-man's land between the two border points where they found 75 people from Sudan, Bangladesh, Thailand and Pakistan who had no passports and were waiting for support from their embassies to provide documentation and support with onward travel. UNHCR has agreed with the Egyptian border authorities to provide shelter, blankets, and food for all those waiting in between the two border points.
From Egypt, UNHCR staff went to the Libyan side of the border and met with Libyan police and military who said that they had defected from Government forces and were now working directly with local committees of tribal leaders. The police arranged for UNHCR to meet with tribal leaders, who highlighted the need for humanitarian assistance, with a critical shortage of food throughout the eastern region, as well as shortages of some medical supplies.
According to the tribal leaders, Africans are being treated with suspicion in eastern Libya, due to rumours about the Government employing mercenaries from sub-Saharan Africa. During the meeting UNHCR staff highlighted the fact that thousands of refugees from sub-Saharan Africa are in Libya, and are very vulnerable at this time. The tribal leaders promised to pass this information on to their communities.
So far no refugees registered with UNHCR in Libya have crossed either the Egyptian or Tunisian borders. UNHCR is in touch with a number of refugees who are choosing to keep a low profile and stay at home; they say they are fearful of being targeted if they attempt to leave. Up until early 2010 UNHCR had registered over 8,000 refugees and 3,000 asylum seekers in Libya.
Last night a UNHCR emergency airlift carrying over 100 tonnes of humanitarian aid for 10,000 people arrived in Jerba, Tunisia. The aid will be transported to the Libyan border to support the thousands of people who are crossing the border each day fleeing the continuing violence.
The Boeing 747 cargo plane was packed with 2000 tents, 2000 plastic sheets and thousands of blankets, sleeping mats, kitchen sets and jerry cans. The tents will be used in a transit camp identified by the Tunisian Government close to the border. This camp is being used for new arrivals awaiting travel arrangements onwards. Other aid items will be distributed by the Tunisian Red Crescent to new arrivals.
UNHCR responded immediately to a call from the Tunisian Government to support the humanitarian effort, and has been working side by side with the Government, the Tunisian Red Crescent and volunteers from the local community since Tuesday.
"Tunisians are driving from far and wide to bring food, blankets and to offer people a safe place to stay," said Ayman Gharabeih, a senior emergency specialist with UNHCR at the Ras Adjir border with Libya. "It is impressive to see how quickly the government, the Red Crescent and ordinary citizens have responded to this crisis," he added.
In addition to the airlift, UNHCR is buying relief items such as blankets and mattresses locally in both Egypt and Tunisia. In both countries UNHCR will work with the Governments and local NGOs to distribute the items. UNHCR is also in the process of planning humanitarian assistance for Libya.
sabato 26 febbraio 2011
In queste ore che tutti salvano i propri connazionali con un ponte aereo e via mare con le navi, i "figli di nessuno" rischiano di fare la brutta fine, in un contesto di caccia all'Africano del Sub Sahara, identificato come mercenario dai manifestanti, additati dal regime come agitatori. Famiglie che vivono segregati in casa dalla paura, raccontano in certi quartieri di Tripoli non possono uscire anche per fare la spesa perche rischiano di essere aggrediti e linciati in piazza. Sono all'opera anche tutti depredatori che scheggiano la città tra le vittime preferite sono proprio i profughi. In questi giorni si sono verificati diversi casi di aggressione fisica, rapine a danno dei profughi, sequestri di persona. La città più insicura per chiunque Tripoli in queste ora, ma più insicuri sono i profughi Africano che sono letteralmente perseguitati. Centinaia di richiedenti asilo politico che erano tenuti nelle carceri libiche, con l'aggravare della crisi sono stati costretti dai loro carcerieri di imbracciare le armi per colpire la piazza chi si è rifiutato veniva ucciso, questa situazione ha messo in cattiva luce i profughi davanti alla popolazione che manifestava. Da questo nasce la caccia dell'Africano mercenario, bisogna ricordare che esistono Libici Tuareg che sono simili all'Africa Nera, quindi non sono mercenari provenienti dal di fuori del paese. Sappiamo che ci sono delle tribù nomade in Libia che sono Africani non di origine araba come la maggioranza dei Libici. Chiediamo all'Europa di salvare i profughi Africani distribuendoli nei stati membri, un atto umanitario va fatto non chiudersi nella posizione egoistica di questi giorni, ogni paese europeo sta tentando di allontanare il problema da se. So che l'Italia sta facendo uno sforzo per ottenere dall'Europa una solidarietà nell'accoglienza dei profughi, noi chiediamo si faccia una evacuazione umanitaria europea condivisa da tu gli stati membri. Non ce tempo da perdere più il tempo passa la situazione sta precipitando, i profughi segregati in casa non possono resistere a lungo. Chiediamo un atto umanitario urgente !!!In all these hours that saved his fellow countrymen with an airlift and sea in ships, the "sons of no one" likely to make a bad end, in a hunting of the African Sub Sahara, identified as a mercenary by protesters , held up by the regime as agitators. Families who live in the house segregated by fear, they tell in some districts of Tripoli can not even go out to shop because they are likely to be attacked and lynched in the streets. They are also at work all predators, which splinter the city among the favorite victims are the very refugees. In recent days there have been several cases of physical assault, robberies of refugees, kidnapping. The city's most unsafe for anyone to Tripoli in these hours, but most are unsure of the African refugees who are literally persecuted. Hundreds of asylum seekers who were being held in Libyan prisons, with the worsening of the crisis were forced by their captors to take up arms to hit the square who refused was killed, this has put a bad light in front of the refugees people who showed. From this comes the African mercenary hunting, keep in mind that there are Libyan Tuareg Black Africa that are similar, so there are mercenaries from outside the country. We know that there are some nomadic tribes in Libya that Africans are not of Arabic origin as the majority of Libyans. We call on Europe to deliver them to save African refugees in Member States, a humanitarian act must be done not in a position close selfish these days, every European country is trying to push the problem by itself. I know that Italy is making an effort to achieve solidarity in a refugee from Europe, we ask that you face a humanitarian evacuation from you shared European member states. Do not time to waste more time passes the situation is sinking, the refugees segregated in the house can not stand long. We call for an urgent humanitarian act! TESTIMONIANZA Ore 15.20 ho ricevuto una telefonate disperata da una donna dell'Eritrei buttata casa fuori dal proprietario di casa a Tripoli zona "Medina" perché nera, la motivazione voi neri africani siete mercenari del regime, riferisce la donna di essere stata picchiata ed costretta a lasciare la casa, ovunque stanno accadendo situazioni del genere di notte sopratutto.
A Bengazi due eritrei feriti con arma da fuoco in condizioni gravissimi, altri due sono stati uccisi per strada mentre erano alla ricerca di aiuto per i feriti, sono stati linciati dalla piazza. I profughi di Bengazi hanno chiesta aiuto ad una nave inglese di metterli in salvo almeno le due persone ferite gravemente, hanno ricevuto un rifiuto secco. Un atteggiamento deplorevole da parte dei inglesi di fronte a due persone ferite in pericolo di vita non hanno voluto soccorrerli. Facciamo appello a tutta la comunità internazionale, specialmente ai paesi europei che si stanno recando per salvare i loro connazionali di non abbandonare i profughi Africani in pericolo di morte certa.
15:20 hours I received a desperate call from a woman in Eritrea thrown out of the house owner's house in Tripoli area "Medina" because black African blacks are the reasons you mercenaries of the regime, said the woman being beaten and forced to leave Home, wherever such situations are happening at night especially. A Bengazi two Eritreans with gunshot injuries in serious condition, two others were killed in the street while they were seeking help for the wounded, were lynched from the square. The refugees have sought help from Bengazi of a British ship to salvage at least two people were seriously wounded, received a dry waste. A regrettable attitude by the British in front of two people in life-threatening injuries were unwilling to help them. We call upon the international community, especially to European countries that are going to save their countrymen not to abandon African refugee in danger of certain death.
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venerdì 25 febbraio 2011
Amid violent protests, Catholic missionaries continue their work in Libya Tripoli, Libya, Feb 24, 2011 / 02:03 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- As a swell of protestors and pro-government troops battle to establish control of Libyan cities, Catholic missionaries continue to carry out their work.
The nation’s leader, Moammar Ghadafi, has come down hard on protesters who took to the streets in an appeal for greater liberty. Benghazi and other cities in the eastern half of the nation are reportedly now controlled by protesters with military backing.
Tripoli remains a hotspot for the conflict and international news agencies are reporting bombings and rampant killing. Confirmations of the true status of cities are scarce, as are open lines of communication.
Estimates of the dead vary from 1,000 to tens of thousands and there is talk that the clashes could escalate into civil war. Thousands of people, especially foreign nationals residing in Libya, are evacuating en masse.
Some illegal African immigrants in Libyan jails are being forced by the pro-government troops to choose between becoming mercenaries or being killed, Father Mussie Zerai of the Italian Habeshia agency told MISNA news.
There are also reports that male immigrants are being abducted from their homes for possible mercenary service. Their possible role in mercenary service has made all immigrants targets for Ghadafi opponents.
The Italian bishops’ SIR news reported that the Catholic Church is organizing for the evacuation of 500 illegal emigrants, largely Eritreans.
Catholic priests and religious are weathering the storm. Many religious sisters work in hospitals and are working overtime with casualties from the conflicts.
“We are well and are continuing our work, despite the situation being unclear and not knowing who actually controls the city,” Sr. Elisabeth of the Sisters of Charity of the Immaculate Conception told MISNA from Benghazi.
“The police and army have disappeared, everyone is thinking of their own safety, guarding their homes, businesses and neighborhoods.”
Sr. Elisabeth said she was unsure of how many people have been injured or killed. “But we know there are many,” she said.
She added that the Libyan people are “weary.”
In a brief telephone conversation with CNA on Feb. 24, Bishop Sylvester Magro, Apostolic Vicar of Benghazi, said that the principal concern of the Catholic Church “is to be close to the sick and suffering, so our contribution to the events is invaluable because of our closeness to the people.”
He said that the Catholic population shares the fate of “everybody else,” at this point.
Bishop Giovanni Innocenzo Martinelli, Apostolic Vicar of Tripoli, told Fides on Feb. 23 that the Catholic community in Libya is made up entirely of “foreigners.”
While the Europeans have been mostly evacuated, the Filipinos – who have a particular presence as hospital nurses – have remained, but the African immigrants “are the ones who need the most assistance.”
Bishop Martinelli is “convinced that there are many people who want peace above all.”
Of the Church in Tripoli, he said they have not had any trouble. “We even had some signs of solidarity on the part of the Libyans, in the form of assistance to both the sisters and to Christians, such as the Filipino nurses who are serving at local hospitals.”
He is closely monitoring the situation of religious communities, he said. For those working around the clock to treat victims, they have instructions that they may leave the country for a period of rest if they feel mentally and physically infirm.
Bishop Martinelli also said that one group of religious sisters who work with immigrants in Tripoli may soon be leaving the city anyway because “in this situation it is precarious to work.”
Bishops Martinelli and Magro oversee the two apostolic vicariates that coordinate Church activities from the western capital of Tripoli and the eastern city of Benghazi.
To serve the large and varied immigrant communities, Masses are held at least once a week for at least 10 different groups divided up by nationality or language.
Masses for Koreans, Indians, Eritreans and Filipinos are interspersed among those given in English, Italian, French, Polish and Arabic.
Parish activities are still largely overseen by Franciscan priests. In a number of cities and towns, but in particular in Tripoli and Benghazi, religious communities are also present.
For now, the conflict continues and projections for casualties look grim.
The vice president of the European Parliament, Gianni Pitella, told Vatican Radio that they have received confirmation of around 10,000 dead. He warned that the figure would be increasing by the hour.He said that “the brutal madness of the regime puts almost any means, even the most atrocious, into play … to stop the citizens that are in the squares, in the streets and are seeing their dream of freedom being realized.”
giovedì 24 febbraio 2011
mercoledì 23 febbraio 2011
A Physicians for Human Rights survey reveals that most sub-Saharan Africans seeking refugee status in Israel suffer horrible violence at the hands of those that smuggle them into the country.By Dana Weiler-Polak
Of the asylum-seekers that were treated at the organization's open-door medical clinic, 59 percent reported that they were imprisoned during part of their journey and 52 percent said that they experienced serious violence.
Groups of asylum-seekers making their way to Israel via Sinai are held against their will by slave traders in torture camps in the area of El-Arish, the report said. The slave traders demand ransoms for their release.
In order to apply pressure on the relatives of the prisoners, the smugglers phone them and allow them to hear the screams of their family members. Ransoms are then demanded of them in exchange for their relatives' continued safe passage to Israel.
Abuses committed against the asylum-seekers include having food and water withheld from them, being slapped, punched and kicked, being buried in sand, being burned with hot irons, being shocked with electricity, being hung in the air from their hands or feet, and being sexually assaulted and raped.
The investigation into the violence began a year ago after eyewitness reports began to filter in at the Physicians for Human Rights clinic in Israel that serves 700 refugees and immigrants every month.
Gradually, the doctors became aware of the increasing incidence of refugees requesting abortions. In conversation, the asylum-seekers confessed that they had been raped on the way to Israel. The organization then drew up a questionnaire and began to present it to new arrivals at the clinic that enter Israel via Sinai.
The survey respondents revealed that 59% of them were held captive in crowded conditions or tied up to one another. 15% of the respondents still bear physical scars as a result of the tortures that they underwent.
44% of the asylum-seekers state that while held captive in the Sinai, they witnessed violence perpetrated upon other captives, sometimes lethal violence. 88% of respondents said that they were held under starvation conditions, deprived of food. 66% complained of having water withheld from them.
Officials in Israel are ignoring the problem and are preventing the issuing of residency status to the political asylum-seekers. The organization is calling upon the Health Minister to apply the National Health Insurance Law to the asylum-seekers residing in Israel, regardless of their civil status.
Similarly, they are calling upon the Social Affairs Minister to establish rights and responsibilities for the asylum-seekers, according to the National Health Insurance Law.
According to additional information obtained by Physicians for Human Rights from the organization Agenzia Habeshia (Abyssinian Agency), 190 citizens of Eritrea and Ethiopia are held in two torture camps in the Sinai. Their captors are demanding ransom payments of up to $10,000 in exchange for the captives.
Reports from these camps include accounts of mass sexual assault and gang rape. Physicians for Human Rights believes that there are several more torture camps just like this in northeastern Sinai.