15. Juli 2017 · Kommentare deaktiviert für Far-right group sends ship to confront boats rescuing refugees in Mediterranean ‘and take them back to Africa’ · Kategorien: Libyen, Mittelmeer · Tags: , ,

The Independent | 13.07.2017

Anti-Islam group says it plans to ‘guard the borders of Europe’

A far-right organisation has launched a boat in the Mediterraneanto confront ships rescuing refugees and send them “back to Africa”.

Defend Europe, a group linked to the European anti-Islam and anti-immigrant “identitarian” movement, is currently sailing a 25-crew 422 tonne vessel to the Libyan coast in a bid to block search-and-rescue vessels operated by humanitarian organisations.

More than 85,000 refugees and migrants, most of them sub-Saharan Africans, have been rescued and brought to Italy this year, with fears the total could reach 200,000 by December. More than 2,000 have died in crossings.

NGOs and advocacy groups have expressed alarm at Defend Europe’s mission, telling The Independent that if it carries out its aims it will “get in the way of genuine lifesaving efforts” and risk further loss of life.

In May Defend Europe carried out a failed attempt to block an Médecins Sans Frontières ship with a small dinghy, and off the back of the stunt has crowdfunded more than €100,000 and bought the larger boat, the C-Star, to pursue its more ambitious plans in the Med.

The group said in a statement that for the new, larger-scale mission it would “overwatch the doings of the NGOs and disrupt the human trafficking rings by sinking the abandoned boats they leave behind”.

It added that the group would offer the Libyan Coastguard support by “saving anyone [it] can” if the boat receives an SOS signal, but that anyone it saved would be taken “back to Africa”, as part of its bid to “guard the borders of Europe”.

Joe Mulhall, senior researcher at advocacy group Hope Not Hate, said the mission would get in the way of rescue efforts and put lives at risk, claiming the group had started downplaying their true aims due to growing media attention.

“Defend Europe is an explicitly far-right project. The identitarian have got a long track record of pulling stunts for anti-Muslim stuff,” he told The Independent.

“For the past few months they’ve been saying they’re going to block the NGO ships. They’ve been clear about this. They’ve changed their tack as more press has become interested and now said they’re going to ‘monitor’ NGO ships and make sure they don’t enter Libyan waters.

“But should they do what they’ve been planning to do for the past few months, they’ll be getting in the way of genuine lifesaving efforts. The fact of the matter is that there’s no question that a bunch of far-right activists on a large ship getting in the way for NGOs trying to save lives will no doubt will be putting lives at risk.

“Getting in the way of any rescue efforts whatsoever, even if you’re just sitting there watching, could result in the loss of lives. All of this stuff in a year when over 2,000 people have already died in the Med is really concerning.”

Hope Not Hate has pulled together a team of researchers to monitor what Defend Europe is saying and will produce a comprehensive legal report of the maritime laws, in order to put pressure on lawmakers and politicians that action must be taken.

“They’re claiming that NGOs are essentially people-trafficking. The research is quite clear that this isn’t the case,” Mr Mulhall added.

“What’s happening in the Med is so dangerous at the moment that the last thing the NGOs and the coastguards and the refugees themselves is a bunch of far-right activists getting in the way.”

He said the mission was also cause for political concern, claiming it has “excited the whole of the international far-right movement” and has attracted funding from extreme right forces from around the world.

“The way they’ve done this has excited the whole of the international far-right movement. It’s raised their profile. The money’s coming from all sorts of extreme forces around the world. Far-right rallying around it,” he said.

“Everyone in the international far-right is animated by this project. In the long term this is going to make them a huge amount of money. We’ll have a network of European far-right network with resources they’ve never had before, and that’s a concern.”

Defend Europe said in a statement to The Independent: “As we have stated clearly from the beginning we never planned to and never will hinder any actual rescuing activities. Our plan is to cooperate with the Libyan coastguard and support their efforts to control their waters, to overwatch and expose the NGOs, especially if they breach the new code of conduct by the Italian government.

“Furthermore we will sink all the abandoned migrant-ships we can find, to drain the financial resources of the trafficking rings.”

The identitarian movement, which started in France in 2002, is a conservative youth movement advocating a return to “traditional western values”. It has recently gained momentum in the UK, with a British branch, Identity Generation, on social media platforms.

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Deutschlandfunk | 14.07.2017

Rechtsextremisten wollen Flüchtlinge im Mittelmeer stoppen

Die rechtsextreme „Identitäre Bewegung“ wird in Deutschland vom Verfassungsschutz beobachtet. Sie lehnt den Zuzug von Flüchtlingen nach Europa ab. Nun hat sie sich mit einem Schiff ins Mittelmeer aufgemacht, um vor der Küste Libyens Menschen auf ihrem Weg nach Europa zu stoppen.

Von Karin Bensch-Nadebusch

Nicht nach Italien, nach Libyen sollen die Flüchtlinge zurück. Das ist Ziel von europäischen Rechtsextremisten, die sich „Defend Europe“ nennen, also „Verteidige Europa“. Dahinter stecken vor allem deutsche, österreichische, französische und italienische Mitglieder der „Identitäten Bewegung“, die in Deutschland wegen ihrer völkischen Ideologie vom Verfassungsschutz beobachtet werden.

Die mehrheitlich jungen Leute haben mithilfe von Spendengeldern ein etwa 40 Meter langes Schiff gechartert. Es befindet sich derzeit auf dem Weg nach Sizilien und soll einigen Wochen in internationalen Gewässern vor der libyschen Küste unterwegs sein, sagt Sprecher Daniel Fiß aus Rostock.

„Wir werden es eben nicht wie die NGOs machen, dass wir den viel zu weiten Weg nach Italien fortsetzen werden, sondern, dass wir eben dort mit der libyschen Küstenwache kooperieren werden. Und dass die Leute wieder sicher an den nordafrikanischen Küsten landen können.“

Schiffe von privaten Hilfsorganisationen beobachten

Dorthin zurück, wo sie herkamen und nicht wieder hin wollen? In das ehemalige Bürgerkriegsland Libyen, das politisch noch immer sehr instabil ist. In das derzeit niemand abgeschoben werden kann. Doch was passiert, wenn sich die Mission der Rechtsextremisten unter Flüchtlingen herum spricht und niemand an Bord gehen oder bleiben will?

„Ich gehe davon aus, dass es da nicht zu irgendwelchen gewaltsamen Ausschreitungen oder Ähnliches an Bord gehen wird“,

sagt der 24-jährige Student. Für die Sicherheit der sechs Besatzungsmitglieder sollen Security-Mitarbeiter sorgen. Auch dann, wenn das Schiff auf möglicherweise bewaffnete Menschenschlepper stoßen sollte.

„Defend Europe“ will vor der libyschen Küste auch Schiffe von privaten Hilfsorganisationen beobachten, erklärt Sprecher Daniel Fiß.

„Die eben dort auch Beweise sammeln, dass diese Organisationen mit den Schleppern an der afrikanischen Küste kooperieren. Und dort eben illegale Aktivitäten ausgeführt werden, die wir dann dokumentieren und juristisch weiter verfolgen werden.“

Bisher keine Beweise

Für diesen Vorwurf gibt es bislang allerdings keinen einzigen wasserdichten Beweis. Besteht die Gefahr, dass Rechtsextreme und Seenotretter in den kommenden Wochen auf hoher See aneinandergeraten? Dazwischen Flüchtlinge in Schlauchbooten, die künftig überlegen müssen, bei welchem Schiff sie an Bord gehen?

„Wir arbeiten dort weiter, wir werden unseren Einsatz fortführen, Hand in Hand mit den italienischen Behörden, übernehmen unsere Verantwortung. Und wer uns da stören will, ja, der macht das anscheinend, aber bis jetzt ist nichts passiert, und wir verwenden da auch nicht sonderlich viel Energie drauf“,

sagt Verena Papke, Sprecherin der privaten Hilfsorganisation „SOS Mediterranee“, deren Schiff erst vor wenigen Tagen über 800 Menschen aus dem Mittelmeer retteten.

Sorge vor den selbst ernannten Rettern aus dem rechten Lager hat die junge Frau nicht. Sie bewegt gerade etwas anderes viel mehr.

„Das Europa vor seinen Grenzen Menschen ertrinken lässt, das sind die Dinge, die uns wirklich Sorgen machen. Und ich glaube, darauf sollte man sich fokussieren.“

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Il Fatto Quotidiano | 13.07.2017

Contro migranti e Ong arriva C-star. Salvarsi in mare sarà una lotteria

Al Mediterraneo, dopo essere stato negli ultimi anni il cimitero per migliaia di migranti in fuga, mancava solo di diventare una curva da stadio in mare.

Massimiliano Sfregola

Dopo la campagna degli ultimi mesi messa in piedi contro le Ong, conclusa con tante chiacchiere e nessun fatto, il mercato dell’odio è riuscito a materializzare le urla razziste della rete nelle forme di una nave lunga 40 metri, la C-star, imbarcazione di Defend Europe, che presto andrà a disturbare le azioni di salvataggio. Già, avete letto bene: nessuna pars costruens – salvare vite, rispettare l’obbligo giuridico di prestare soccorso in mare e poi discutere – no, solo pars destruens con “respingimenti fai-da-te” verso la Libia: secondo gli sceriffi del mare di Gioventù identitaria, uno stato in macerie e con (almeno) 2 governi, dove sono documentate sistematiche violazioni dei diritti umani sarebbe l’apoteosi del concetto politico di “porto sicuro”.

Quella in corso è una gara alla legittimazione giocata con un vocabolario da parodia cattivista del linguaggio di Ong e movimenti progressisti: i salvataggi operati dalle organizzazioni umanitarie sarebbero parte di un fantomatico complotto immigrazionista dietro il quale si celerebbe l’obiettivo di favorire la sostituzione delle popolazioni europee con masse di giovani africani.

In questa spirale di paranoia, pericolose e disumane azioni di disturbo diventano atti di resistenza contro fantomatici nemici della civilità, come se i membri delle Ong non fossero concittadini degli identitari ma alieni scesi da Marte.

Per la campagna di crowdfunding lanciata da Defend Europe (e Generazione identitaria) per finanziare l’imbarcazione, Paypal ha scelto saggiamente la non cooperazione, bloccando la raccolta fondi di chi vuole mettere il numero chiuso al Mediterraneo. A quanto pare, tuttavia, il fanatismo non è solo religioso: quei 76mila euro raccolti comunque per un’imbarcazione le cui attività, al netto della propaganda, ricadono in un’area di dubbia legalità e di certa immoralità, la dicono lunga sulla pesante crisi della nostra civiltà. In questo senso, certamente, l’Europa è a rischio.

Questa situazione può portare ad una rapida escalation e le autorità avrebbero l’obbligo di evitare un’ipocrita equidistanza tra identitari e Ong perchè i salvataggi, quelli veri, colmano proprio la vergognosa inerzia dei governi, tanto sul piano politico quanto su quello giuridico.

Per i migranti, a questo punto, l’odissea rischia di diventare una crudele lotteria nella lotteria: non basteranno più solo le preghiere di uscire vivi dal Mediterraneo, ora dovranno fare anche scongiuri di non essere salvati dall’imbarcazione sbagliata.

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