The rebound effect or illegal returns on the Balkan route | Blog 3500 Million

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Lukas picks up the dictionary and manages to understand what happened to the two men who have a scared and hopeless face: Ali and Said have just been returned by Bosnian police from Bosnia-Herzegovina to Montenegro. They only represent one example of what migrants experience every day along the entire Balkan route, which, despite difficulties, human rights violations and injustices, remains one of the few options for thousands of people to migrate to Central Europe. . The lack of legal means both to migrate economically safely and to request asylum without risking a long, dangerous and costly journey, forces those who want to migrate to do so in a way that is both inhumane and forced.

“They are very worried, they don't know where to go. They say they have been beaten by the police. One's leg hurts and the other's left arm; they need to go to the hospital, they could have something broken or fractured, ”Lukas reports.

Ali and Said are in an irregular administrative condition, so access to medical treatment is denied both in Spuz camp, outside Podgorica, and in the public hospital where patients are required to have some kind of national identification. . There is no other option but a private clinic. Lukas makes some calls and organizes everything so that Ali and Said are seen the next day.

Everything is ready, you just need to say goodbye, rest and stay for the next day.

"Last night there was a fight at the gates of the camp, the police took some people … It is likely that they also took Said and Ali." A man tells Lukas that, when he returns near the field, just at the point where he had met Ali and Said, he does not find either of them. Useless to call on the phone, or write on Facebook, they haven't been connected since seven at night the day before. Lukas can do nothing but call the clinic, cancel the appointment, and go home; carrying the weight of his doubts alone.

“They are very worried, they don't know where to go. They say they have been beaten by the police. One's leg hurts and the other's left arm; they need to go to the hospital, they could have something broken or fractured "

“They have returned us to Albania. A fight started at the gates of the field, the security service called the police who did not ask anything when they arrived, they only caught me, Ali and other boys who were there. They put us in the back of a car that couldn't be identified as a police car, it was all black. I was scared and felt like in a cage. After a few hours they stopped and told us: "Get out of the car and run; without turning around." We didn't even know where we were ”. Said writes whose broken bones now hurt him less than the injustice he just suffered: returned from Bosnia to Montenegro and from Montenegro to Albania in less than 24 hours.

During 2019, 8,000 people in transit were registered in Montenegro. Bosnian Police Chief Zoran Galić admitted 7,000 illegal returns between his country and neighboring Serbia and Montenegro. The returns, committed by Bosnian officials during the first 8 months of 2019, are illegal not only because Galić admitted it, but because it is stipulated by international law when returns are carried out as a group, outside the legal borders and recognized and without an administrative procedure that endorses them.

Reports published by the Border Violence Monitoring Network (BVMN) platform, co-founded by No Name Kitchen, shed some light on illegal returns on the Balkan route. "In Montenegro there is a reversal of the migratory flow: People who previously migrated north, now return to Greece, after losing heart after being returned illegally and violently at different border points," according to the report published by BVMN in June 2019.

Valentina angotti It belongs to the NGO No Name Kitchen, which works with refugees in the Balkans.

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