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Executive Summary for July 31st

We review the latest news related to refugees, including Italy’s calls for closer cooperation with Libya on border protection, suspected trafficking of underaged Afghan refugees and violent attacks against refugees on Manus Island.

Published on July 31, 2017 Read time Approx. 2 minutes

Italy to Start Patrolling Central Mediterranean Route With Libya

Italy’s prime minister, Paolo Gentiloni, said Italy would start working closely with Libya to patrol its waters.

In the absence of solidarity from E.U. counterparts and lack of proportional distribution of refugees among member states, this move was mainly to restrain human trafficking, Gentiloni said.

In the face of continuing arrivals, mostly from Libya, Italy has already devised a “code of conduct” for rescue missions operating in the central Mediterranean, a move that NGOs have decried as contrary to international legal obligations to protect all those in distress at sea.

“The code of conduct may in some cases hinder rescue operations and delay disembarkations in a safe place within a reasonable amount of time,” Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch said in a joint statement.

Afghan Officials Intercept Child Refugees Being Trafficked to Pakistan

Afghan police say they found 27 boys aged 4–15 being transported by van to Baluchistan, Pakistan, to be sent to religious schools for training, according to a Voice of America report.

The children were being taken to be educated in Taliban ways with the aim of bringing them back to Afghanistan to impose the radical religious movement’s rigid interpretation of Islam, Afghan officials told the AP.

With hundreds of thousands of Afghan asylum seekers being sent back from Iran, Europe and Pakistan, with little protection or means of survival upon return, the most vulnerable among them are highly susceptible to being trafficked and abused.

Manus Island Refugees Attacked With Machetes

In three separate incidents asylum seekers on Manus Island suffered serious injuries during robberies that included attacks with machetes, according to latest media reports.

The men were staying outside the confines of the detention center, in guest houses, because they felt that the center was no longer safe.

Ian Rintoul of the Refugee Action Coalition said the “brutality of the attacks” showed that Manus has become unsafe for asylum seekers.

Two of the men recovering at a local hospital are from Iran and Sudan.

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