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Balkan route: What can be done?

Call for action: online meeting the 4th of February 8.00 pm CET

28 January 2021

A transnational discussion proposal promoted by the Lesvoscalling campaign, Linea d’ombra ODV, Strada SiCura.

- Facebook event

The situation along the Balkan Route has definitely worsened with the arrival of winter and after the fires that have hit various camps, especially Lipa Camp; but the events taking place on the Balkan Route - abuses, violence, torture, pushbacks and deaths - have been some of the European Union’s most blatant faults for years.

Therefore, as a first response to a humanitarian catastrophe that is getting worse by the hour, spontaneous and organized solidarity is a most needed and essential weapon: that is why we invite everyone to support the people and organizations working on the field, the only ones that can understand the ever-changing situation and work in synergy with the local population.
However, there is another urgent and necessary matter: that of destroying the way in which what happens on the borders is told. At the moment, the situations keeps shifting from moments of emergency, to other periods of time during which everything seems to be just fine, and nothing and no one can get any news out.

Let us just say that we are not going to cheer the European Union, which, in order to clear its conscience, has given Bosnia-Herzegovina 3.5 million euros to help face an emergency that has been caused by its own politics.
This is just the last part of the circa 90 million euros that have been handed out by the EU to this day, much of which has ended up in the wallets of big organizations such as the IOM and the Danish Refugees Council.
This behaviour has received the approval of many, but we, as a campaign, are not among them.
What this kind of decisions reveal is that the European Union is twice as bad: firstly, it shows that the EU’s politics on the externalization of its borders haven’t changed, those same politics of which the treaty with Turkey in 2016 was only the tip of the iceberg.
The cost of creating safe channels for the people on the move would be a total of 90 million euros, but instead, this way Europe covers up its responsibilities while making the world believe that it actually cares about people’s lives.

Secondly, the EU sends a very clear message to Croatia: “You can keep on violently pushing people back from your borders, because with my actions I have moved everyone’s attention to Bosnia-Herzegovina’s hospitality system”.

For us, the only actual solution is to crack the border system-regime, to highlight the EU’s criminal policies (see the last pact on immigration and asylum, focused on detention and repatriation and a twisted interpretation of the term “solidarity”), and to help in any way possible people’s movement.

We do not want to do it by ourselves, because during these years of travels and encounters, we have built relationships with many different people and organizations that work at the borders, and we have become aware of the fact that that of migrations is a battlefield in which it is necessary to build intersectional processes.

We therefore invite all social organizations, associations, collectives and individuals to discuss a plan for an initiative that could overturn the hypocrisy of borders, challenging those borders and, if possible, actually forcing them into a crisis.

Online meeting the 4th of February 8.00 pm.

- For more information and to have the link: lesvoscalling@gmail.com