News Highlights: Refugees in Tigray under threat, Denmark returning Syrian refugees “a dangerous precedent”, 1 in 3 trafficking victims are minors

In this week’s highlights: Eritrean refugees unsafe in Ethiopia; WFP running out of food in Tigray; 3,000 Ethiopian refugees from Amhara crossed over into Sudan this week; 32 suspects of human trafficking arrested in Sudan; 5,500 people pushed back this year in Europe; Denmark to return Syrian refugees in “a dangerous precedent”; Trafficking victims exploited in Europe identified in Italy are increasingly mothers and children; Nearly 1,000 refugees have died crossing the Central Mediterranean; Turkey refusing to take on more refugee cases as 500 refugees intercepted this week; Over 550 refugees intercepted by UK and French coast guard; 70th anniversary of the 1951 Refugee Convention; COVID-19 has worsened global malnutrition.

News Highlights: Independent reports on chemical weapons entering Tigray, Mass starvation occurring in Tigray, Illegal pushbacks to Libya 

In this week’s news highlights: EEPA webinar discusses the widespread abuse of refugees happening in Tigray; Reports of chemical weapons entering Tigray; International community condemns widespread starvation in Tigray and warn of potential famine in Ethiopia; Ethiopia’s UN envoy stated that Eritrean soldiers will ‘leave soon’; BBC docu-film on the perilous journey of migrants from Ethiopia to Yemen; Human trafficker Tewelde Goitom (Welid) sentenced to 18 years in prison; Alarm Phone reports illegal pushbacks in Libya; Scotland’s Council extends ban on acceptance of refugees; Refugees sentenced to 10 years over Moria fire; Police bust human smuggling ring in North Macedonia; IOM project aims to make migration data more accessible.

The EU’s lack of a unified voice leads to scapegoating of migrants in some countries

The European Commission (EC) decided to apply a temporary restriction for non-essential travel from third countries into the European Union or in other words, closed the Schengen external borders. The EU hoped that the decision would enable the lifting of internal border controls. However, such controls have already been applied by several member states in an effort to limit the spread of the virus. Some have criticized the EU’s lack of a unified response and clear message; and some countries, like Hungary and Italy, justify their anti-migration policies by using the uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus.