Alarm Phone Weekly Report 2nd – 8th of November 2015
Auch in der Woche vom 2. zum 8. November 2015 kam es zu dramatischen Ereignissen in der Ägäis, die teils tödlich endeten. Wieder stießen Fischer und andere Involvierte auf leblose Körper auf See oder an den Küsten griechischer Inseln*. Wie in den Monaten zuvor waren auch im November die Ankunftszahlen hoch: An den meisten Tagen kamen mehr als 3.000, an zwei Tagen sogar über 6.000 Menschen an**. Der Winter steht vor der Tür und ohne Zugang zu sicheren und durch die EU legalisierte Einreisewege, nutzen viele die letzte Chance um nach Europa zu kommen und riskieren dabei ihr Leben.
Wenn sie die gefährliche Überfahrt überleben, stranden die Geflüchteten an oftmals nur schwer zugänglichen griechischen oder türkischen Inseln, einige davon unbewohnt. Die Hilfe lässt Stunden, manchmal Tage auf sich warten. Nass und geschwächt von der Überfahrt und mit schlechtem oder gar keinem Zugang zu Lebensmitteln, wird das Ausharren für manche zu einer lebensbedrohenden Situation. Die Zuständigkeit für Rettungen in solchen Situationen ist leider oft unklar. VertreterInnen der Küstenwachen erkennen ihre Zuständigkeit bei Seenot an, sehen sich teilweise jedoch bei Strandungen an Land nicht in der Verantwortung. Doch auch bei Fällen von Seenot werden Rettungsmissionen aufgrund von unklaren oder sich überlappenden Zuständigkeiten in manchen Fällen gestoppt oder gar nicht ausgeführt. Durch eine radikale Wende der europäischen Migrationspolitik können sowohl Fälle von Seenot als auch Strandungen vermieden und das Sterben auf See endlich beendet werden. Deshalb fordert das Alarmphone eindringlich sichere Einreisewege nach Europa!
In dieser Woche wurde das Alarm Phone auf insgesamt 60 Notfälle aufmerksam gemacht, 59 davon in der Ägäis, einer im westlichen Mittelmeer. An manchen Tagen war die Zahl der Notfälle an Land sogar höher als die auf See.
- On Monday the 2nd of November 2015, the Alarm Phone was alerted to 6 cases of distress in the Aegean Sea – 3 cases at sea near the Greek islands Farmakonisi and Lesvos and 3 cases on land, as travellers had stranded on the Greek islands of Kouneli and Farmakonisi and near Siğacik, Turkey. In all cases the rescue or safe arrival of the travellers was confirmed: in four cases the travellers arrived safely in Greece; in two cases the travellers were picked up by the Turkish Coastguard.
- (see: http://watchthemed.net/index.php/reports/view/330)
- On Tuesday the 3rd of November 2015, the Alarm Phone was alerted to 9 cases of distress in the Aegean Sea and became active in 6 cases of distress at sea and on land. In one case the travellers who had been in distress at sea still made it to Greece, in three cases the travellers were rescued by the Greek, and in two cases by the Turkish Coastguard. (see: http://watchthemed.net/index.php/reports/view/329)
- On Wednesday the 4th of November 2015, the Alarm Phone was alerted to 11 cases and intervened in 8 cases of distress in the Aegean Sea, near the Greek islands of Samos, Kos, Lesvos, and Ro and off the Turkish coast close to Izmir. In all cases, the rescue of the travellers was confirmed: In five cases they were saved by the Greek coastguard and in two cases by the Turkish Coastguard, in one case the travellers went back to Turkey, in one case they never left Turkey, because the waves were too high, and in one case they reached Greece by themselves.
- (see: http://watchthemed.net/index.php/reports/view/328)
On Friday the 6th of November 2015, the Alarm Phone was alerted to 11 cases in the Aegean, that is, to 9 boats in distress near Agathonisi, Samos, and Lesvos, and to two groups, stranded on Glaros and Ro. In one case, the travellers reported that a person had died on board, but we could not verify this information. The two stranded groups were picked up and brought to Greece. Four of the boats in distress were rescued by the coastguard (one by the Turkish coastguard), in the other cases we could unfortunately not get a final confirmation of their rescue.
On Saturday the 7th of November 2015, the Alarm Phone was alerted to 5 cases of travellers stranded on the Greek islands Kastellerizo, Agathonisi, Ro, and Pserimos. In three cases, the travellers had to withstand the cold and persevere without food and water for many hours, but eventually they were picked up. In one case, the travellers were not in a situation of distress and in another the Greek coastguard picked them up, without us having to intervene.
On Sunday the 8th of November 2015, the Alarm Phone was alerted to 8 cases of distress in the Aegean Sea, in five cases travellers had stranded on different Greek islands and had to wait for hours in the cold, without food or water to be rescued. The coastguard was reluctant to assist in these cases, as they were busy and said that it was not in their duty to assist persons on land. However, in many cases there were no other authorities to turn to, as neither the UNHCR nor the Hellenic Rescue Team could be reached. In three cases, in which people were stranded, we did not get their rescue confirmed, in one case the travellers were saved by the local police and in another case by the Greek coastguard, the 3 boats in distress were also rescued by the Greek coastguard.
Western Mediterranean Sea
On Thursday, the 5th of November 2015, the Alarm Phone was alerted to one case in the Western Mediterranean. At shortly before 11.30pm we received two calls from different Moroccan contact person, who informed us about a case of approximately 50 persons with at least 3 children among them on a 9meter long pirogue that had left from Morocco two days earlier at approximately 5am from El Ayoun/ Cabo Boujdour to Canary Islands/Las Palmas. The contact persons were worried, because the travellers had called them around 7pm, saying that they were lost. We could not reach the travellers. We checked on different social networks and saw that the case was already known within solidarity groups and that a rescue operation had started already. The Spanish Rescue agency Salvamento Maritimo on Las Palmas told us that they had been involved in the rescue operation, but had stopped, as the boat had passed into Moroccan waters and was now being dealt with by the Moroccan authorities. We tried several times to get in touch with the travellers, but without success. We had to wait until Friday afternoon at 2.30pm until we got a final confirmation that the travellers were safely back in Morocco.