Info Refugee Migrations in(to) Europe: October 16-31. Gran Canaria & French Guiana becoming more important as places of arrival?

Ann Trappers, 1 November 2020

October 16. It is becoming known that on October 15, 10 African migrants died at sea near Djibouti, crossing from Yemen.

October 17. Montenegro’s Coast Guard intercepted 52 refugees/migrants on their way to Italy. They were on a yacht under the Croatian flag and with Serbian crew. They were transferred to Herceg Novi, Montenegro. The migrants, who had sufficient economic resources, thus wanted to avoid the Balkan route. In 2017, Europol estimated such a crossing at 6,000 euro per person.

October 16. In north-eastern Italy, near the Slovenian border, 50 refugees were arrested and received in Udine and 76 in Trieste. They had arrived via the Balkan route.

October 21. With winter approaching, the new refugee camp on Lesvos, consisting of summer tents, appears to be worse than the former Moria. Thus Oxfam and the Greek Council for Refugees.

October 22. According to IOM and UNHCR, 3,200 refugees are currently held in Libyan detention centers.

October 22.  At least 15 dead after boat sunk near Sabratha (Libya).

October 23. 100 refugees were flown from Greece to Germany including 50 sick children and their family members. This brings the total number of refugees flown to Germany since April to 1,000.

October 23. Croatian border police are accused of using improper violence against refugees attempting to enter the country. 

October 23. According to Turkey, in one day, a total of 232 migrants were rescued off Turkey, driven back by the Greek Coast Guard on their attempt to reach the Greek Islands.

October 25. Apparently Frontex is at times complicit in the push back of refugees to Turkey by Greece.

October 25. Another boat carrying refugees has sunk off the Libyan coast, causing 11 deaths, including a pregnant woman.

October 26. Seven stowaways attempted to take over command of a Liberian-flagged tanker that had left Lagos (Nigeria) carrying 42,000 tons of crude oil. The UK Navy was able to overpower the seven stowaways at the Isle of Wight and pilot the ship to Southampton.

October 27. A rubber dinghy with 20 Iranian refugees capsized while attempting to cross the Channel from Dunkirk: 15 people were rescued, but 2 adults, 2 children (5 and 8 years old) and probably also a baby died.

October 27. Meeting between the Ministers of the Interior of Italy and Austria, to improve the cooperation in the fight against illegal migrations and people smuggling.

October 29. The Guardian reports that since 1999, so for 20 years, at least 300 refugees, including 36 children, have demonstrably died trying to cross the Channel in a rubber dinghy.

October 29. Gran Canaria a new Lesbos in the making? During 2020, 7 times more refugees arrived in the Canary Islands than in 2019. Between September 28 and October 25: 5,200 refugees came ashore. 40% of the 24,000 refugees in Spain arrive in the Canary Islands, especially Gran Canaria. Since 2020, 200 people have already died on this Atlantic route.

October 29. In Croatia, in July, 7 refugees hid in a container they thought destined for Milan. However, the container was shipped to Paraguay. Now, at the end of October, their bodies were found in the same container in Asuncion (Paraguay).

A Moroccan and an Algerian have been arrested for this case in Serbia.

October 29. 140 refugees died when a boat carrying more than 200 refugees sank off the coast of Senegal.

October 31. French Guiana (French territory in South America, and thus part of the EU) is becoming an important place of arrival for migrants and refugees from Africa who want to avoid the dangers of the Mediterranean Sea.