By Maria Caspani NEW YORK (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Police in some Balkan nations are abusing thousands of refugees, asylum seekers and migrants, many of them children, as they travel across the region to reach the European Union (EU), Amnesty International said in a report. Refugees and migrants fleeing conflict in Syria, Afghanistan and other crisis zones endure beatings and extortion during the journey that takes them by sea from Turkey to Greece and then over land across Macedonia and Serbia into Hungary, the rights group said. "Refugees fleeing war and persecution make this journey across the Balkans in the hope of finding safety in Europe only to find themselves victims of abuse and exploitation and at the mercy of failing asylum systems," said Gauri van Gulik, Amnesty International's deputy director for Europe and central Asia. European nations are struggling to deal with increasing numbers of people who cross the Mediterranean in rickety boats and trek across the Balkans to escape violence and hardship in the Middle East and North Africa. Nearly 2,000 have died so far this year trying to reach Italy or Greece by boat. The western Balkans route has become the busiest irregular passage to Europe overtaking the Mediterranean route which remains the most deadly, the report said. The number of people apprehended crossing the Serbia-Hungary border has risen by more than 2,500 percent since 2010, said Amnesty. Authorities at border crossings in Macedonia and Serbia deny them entry and beat them, Amnesty said. Many are forced to pay bribes, said the report. "I saw men badly beaten. They beat my 13-year-old son. They beat me too," one Afghan refugee told Amnesty. The rights group interviewed more than 100 refugees and migrants between July 2014 and March 2015 in Serbia, Hungary, Greece and Macedonia. At Macedonia's Reception Centre for Foreigners hundreds, including pregnant women and children, are held with limited access to sanitation and health care and with no opportunity to claim asylum, Amnesty said. Former detainees reported police beat them and forced people to sleep on stairs without blankets and had no hot water and food. STUCK IN LIMBO Failing asylum systems in the region leave many in a legal limbo and vulnerable to human rights violations, the report said. In Serbia, only one individual was granted asylum in 2014 and only 10 were granted refugee status in Macedonia. Most asylum seekers reach Hungary where they are at risk of arbitrary detention in prison-like conditions with police who act like guards, it said. Hungary's parliament passed legislation on Monday that tightens asylum rules, providing the legal framework for a fence to be built along the country's southern border with Serbia to stem the flow of illegal migrants. "As increasing numbers of vulnerable refugees, asylum-seekers and migrants become trapped in a Balkan no-man's land, the pressures on Serbia and Macedonia are mounting," said Amnesty's van Gulik. "These stresses, like those on Italy and Greece, can only be resolved by a much broader rethink of EU migration and asylum policies." (Reporting by Maria Caspani,; Editing by Leslie Gevirtz; Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women's rights, trafficking, corruption and climate change. Visit www.trust.org)
- The Daily Beast
Mario Anzuoni/ReutersAlec Baldwin and Rosanna Arquette are among a number of celebrities who have been slammed for sending thoughts and prayers to Anne Heche after the A-lister’s high-speed crash into a Mar Vista house while allegedly drunk.Baldwin took to Instagram on Saturday to send “my best wishes and all my love” to Heche, who is reportedly in stable condition in a hospital after suffering severe burns in the incident. According to a statement from the Los Angeles Fire Department, it took 5
They were together for nine months.
Pete Davidson wore a T-shirt with a cryptic message a day after announcing his split from Kim Kardashian
The former "SNL" star was photographed while filming on location in Cairns, Australia, where he appeared to make an interesting fashion statement.
- The Hill
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) clinched a victory on Wednesday when the Senate — including 48 of the chamber’s 50 Republicans — voted overwhelmingly to admit Finland and Sweden to NATO. The resolution, which cleared the chamber in a bipartisan 95-1 vote, was a top priority for the Republican leader, who wanted to send a signal…
- The Hill
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) received a warning early Sunday morning to follow the Senate’s decorum rules after he accused Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) of being “deceitful” and “dishonest” and vowed “we’re going to call you out.” “This gives phony and cynical a bad name,” Graham exclaimed when Hassan introduced her amendment. Graham’s outburst at Hassan…
Queen Elizabeth II Reportedly Begged Prince William To Stop a Hobby That Could ‘Threaten the Line of Succession’
While Queen Elizabeth II is okay with many of Prince William’s hobbies, like motorcycles and sailing, there’s one that she “stays up at night” worrying about. And truthfully, we don’t blame her. It’s reported by Daily Mail that the Queen has repeatedly asked William not to fly helicopters, especially to not pilot them himself in […]
- The Courier
Tim Trahan, a Houma native living in Arcadia, caught the new State Record Bluegill out of a neighbor's pond in Arcadia.
- The Daily Beast
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/GettyA wave of COVID infections caused by the BA.5 subvariant has crested. All over the world, daily new cases, hospitalizations and deaths are going down.But the SARS-CoV-2 virus is almost certainly here to stay. Another wave is all but inevitable as new variants and subvariants mutate, compete for dominance, and find new transmission pathways.How fast that wave comes, and how bad it gets, probably comes down to a genetic competition between different mutat
- The Hill
A power tool and hand tool manufacturer issued a recall for almost 1.4 million saws on Thursday following reports of consumer laceration injuries while using the product. DeWALT issued the recall for the 12-inch sliding compound miter saws after the company learned that the rear safety guard can break or detach, according to the U.S.…
The fast-food chain teased its biggest fans on Twitter, but now it has actually brought back a much-requested item.
- Ukrayinska Pravda
VALENTYNA ROMANENKO - MONDAY, 8 AUGUST 2022, 07:58 Aerial reconnaissance and artillery units of the National Guard of Ukraine and the Ukrainian Armed Forces, supported by tanks, destroyed a subversion and reconnaissance group of Russian special forces and a Russian ammunition point in the north of Kharkiv Oblast.
New video shows a chaotic crash of a stolen rental car involving four teens. Traffic cameras captured police trying to stop the vehicle on 35-E in Little Canada. The car crashes into the median twice and four people come running out and across the busy highway. All four were arrested.
11-year-old who saved up money for a lemonade stand was scammed by a man who gave him fake $100 bill and asked for exact change
Jeremy, who lives in Washington state, used his allowance to set up a lemonade stand but was stiffed by a man using a fake $100.
Elizabeth Banks is turning up the heat this summer with a show-stopping, untouched video of herself living her best life by the pool. On Aug 4, Banks uploaded a cheeky video of herself going from the airport in her casual ensemble to lounging by the pool in a cherry-printed bikini. She posted it with the […]
- Steelers Wire
Najee Harris has missed a week with a foot injury.
"A kind and generous person, Lynne is always first to offer help to others," neighbors wrote in a GoFundMe for Lynne Mishele, the woman who lost her home in Anne Heche's recent car crash
- Business Insider
Liz Cheney says she favors serving with Democratic women with national security backgrounds over GOP lawmakers like Marjorie Taylor Greene and Lauren Boebert
Cheney said she may have ideological disagreements with national security-minded Democrats, but "they love this country" and "do their homework."
- Argus Leader
There were also 25 drug arrests on the rally’s first day.
- Ukrayinska Pravda
ROMAN PETRENKO - SUNDAY, 7 AUGUST 2022, 09:23 Russian forces launched a new wave of forced "mobilisation" on the Russian-occupied territories of Donbas on 1 August in order to staff mobilisation reserve units.
- The Tennessean
The country entertainer honored his wife and injured gospel icon during night three of his Ryman residency