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EU: Build Schools, Not Walls

EU: Build Schools, Not Walls

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This petition has been created by Karol W. and may not represent the views of the Avaaz community.
Karol W.
started this petition to
Notis Mitarachi, the Minister of Migration of Greece
We strongly stand against allocating European funds to build walls around Greek refugee camps.

The ongoing fencing work at the Ritsona, Polykastro, Diavata, Malakasa and Nea Kavala camps must stop immediately.

Greece, with the full support of the European Union, is turning refugee camps into de-facto prisons.

Millions of euros allocated for building walls should be spent on education, psychological support and the improvement of hygienic conditions in the refugee camps.

What happened?

In January and February 2021, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) published two invitations to bid for the construction of fences in refugee camps in mainland Greece.

However, the fences became concrete walls. In March the Greek Ministry of Migration and Asylum commissioned to build NATO type fences and introduce additional security measures.

Nobody - including camp residents - was informed about it.

The walls are a jeopardy for integration, safety and mental health

Residents of refugee camps fled their country in search for safety. In Europe their (mental) health is worsening because of the horrific conditions in the camps.

Building the walls after a year of strict lockdown will lead to a further deterioration in their mental state.

Moreover, it will:
- deepen divisions between people: it will make the interaction between refugees and the local community even more difficult, if not impossible.
- make it even harder for journalists and NGO’s to monitor the situation in the camp
- put the residents of the camps in danger in case of fire.

As EU citizens we cannot allow that innocent people are being locked behind the walls, in the middle of nowhere. Being a refugee is not a crime.

Seeking asylum is a human right.

Democracy and freedom cannot be built with concrete walls.

Building walls was always the beginning of dark periods in history.

Crushing walls - is the source of hope, reconciliation and (what is a foundation of European idea) solidarity.

No more walls in the EU!


Organizations supporting the petition (in alphabetical order):

Better Days NGO
Bezlik Foundation
Changing Stories
Christian Peacemaker Teams - Netherlands
Christian Refugee Service, z.s.
CIM Horyzonty
Connect by Music Greece
Europe Must Act
Feminist Autonomous Centre for Research
Humanity On the Move (HOM)
Humans of Aleppo
Janina Ochojska, Member of the European Parliament
Jordi Solé, Member of European Parliament
Josoor International Solidarity
Lepszy Świat Association
Malin Björk, Member of European Parliament, THE LEFT
Minority Rights Group International
Nikolaj Villumsen, Member of European Parliament
NoMoreMorias Berlin
No Borders Katowice
Oikopolis - a parallel city
Our House
PAH Polska Akcja Humanitarna
Polish Hospitality Foundation / Fundacja Polska Gościnność
Pomagamy Sportowo
Poznańska Garażówka
Projekt 009
RATS Agency
ReFOCUS Media Lab
Rethinking Refugees
Salam Lab | Laboratory of Peace
Soup and Socks
Światło dla Syrii - Light for Syria
Team Humanity
The Hope Project Polska Foundation
The Wave of Hope for the Future
Tineke Strik, Member of European Parliament, GroenLinks
Walk of Shame
We Gaan Ze Halen/Let's Bring Them Here
Yoga and Sport With Refugees


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Posted (Updated )