In this week’s News Highlights: UN commission says crimes against humanity in Tigray committed by federal government; Eritrea and Ethiopia start offensive against Tigray; Causes of discontinued peace talks in Ethiopia; Eritrean government calls up all reservists under 55; Next months crucial for South Sudan peace process; Alleged sexual abuse by aid workers in UN camp in South Sudan; Sudan’s ruling general will not run for election, he says; UNHCR updates guidance on protection of Somali refugees; Somali military frees strategic town in Hiran region; Italian journalist appeals to ECHR for transparency on use of EU funds by Libyan forces intercepting migrants; Migrants and refugees rescued from boats in Mediterranean; MEPs on visit to assess conflict in Ethiopia, democratic transition in Sudan; Upcoming reform of the Common European Asylum System; Greek minister calls for increased European solidarity; NGOs denounce Berlin’s admission programme for Afghans; Global hunger crisis deepens as one dies of hunger every four seconds; UN debate on the promotion of all human rights.
In this week news highlights: Ethiopian government launches offensive against Tigray forces; US ponders sanctions; UN recalls two officials over audio recordings; High ministerial meeting on Ethiopia; Tigray interim government member seeks asylum; Sudan Tribune reports unconfirmed news that Salva Kiir would mediate in Tigray conflict; Eritrea re-elected to UN Human Rights Council – critics cry foul; 6 migrants shot and killed by Libyan detention centre guards following crackdown; 15 migrants bodies found off to shore of Libya; 1,100 migrants and refugees crossed the English Channel during the weekend; Migrants and refugees facing harassment in Northern France; NGO unable to operate in militarized Greece-Turkey border area; Greece and Croatia suspected of illegal pushbacks at the borders using EU funds; UNHCR urges greater access to mental health for refugees.
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.