News

10 March 2022

Submission to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants regarding the human rights impact of COVID-19 protocols on asylum seekers arriving to Kos and Chios.

Equal Rights Beyond Borders submitted observations to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants regarding the human rights impact of COVID-19 protocols on asylum seekers arriving to Kos and Chios.
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The full submission can be found here.

Key issues highlighted in the submission include:

  1. Asylum seekers are placed in quarantine upon arrival to Greece. They have no known legal status–or legal protection–during this quarantine period. This creates a situation in which human rights violations within the quarantine facility are able to thrive.

  2. Asylum seekers’ phones have been systematically confiscated during quarantine, resulting in a situation in which they cannot contact legal services, psycho-social services, or loved ones while in quarantine.

  3. In the quarantine facilities on Kos, asylum seekers have reported mice and cockroaches in their living-quarters, bathrooms so dirty and moldy that asylum seekers were unable to shower for the entirety of quarantine, a lack of heat or proper insulation from the elements, and an insufficient number of mattresses for everyone to sleep on.

  4. Asylum seekers are not given any information about why or for how long they are to be quarantined, or that after the quarantine they’ll be allowed to seek asylum.

  5. Asylum seekers have been issued 5000-euro fines for violating COVID-19 entry protocol, a practice that is entirely unlawful.

  6. Asylum seekers are treated as criminals for stepping foot on European shores. The public prosecutor on Chios routinely charges asylum seekers in criminal court for breaking COVID–19 entry protocol.

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