Hungarian, Austrian anti-refugee policies

This video from Hungary says about itself:

2 September 2015

Thousands of refugees and migrants remain stranded at Budapest’s main international railway station after Hungarian authorities blocked them from boarding trains, preventing them from leaving for Austria and Germany.

Around 3,000 migrants were gathered outside Keleti station early Wednesday, many having slept outside the main entrance of the station overnight.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Refugees barred from trains to Germany and Austria

Wednesday 2nd September 2015

Closure of the main Budapest railway station to prevent refugees from travelling provokes chaos and protests

HUNGARIAN authorities closed the main railway station in Budapest yesterday to stop refugees boarding trains to Austria and Germany.

Chaos ensued at Keleti station, with angry refugees chanting “freedom” and demanding to be allowed to use rail tickets that cost them hundreds of euros.

Scuffles broke out in the morning as hundreds pushed toward the metal gates where a train was to leave for Vienna and Munich and were blocked by police.

Authorities announced over station loudspeakers that all trains would be stopped from leaving for an indefinite period.

Refugees’ papers were checked, and those with train tickets but no EU visas were ushered out of the cavernous station.

The closure came after Austrian Chancellor Werner Faymann complained of 3,650 refugees arriving by train from Hungary in Vienna on Monday.

“Allowing them to simply board in Budapest … and watching as they are taken to the neighbour — that’s not politics,” he said.

The horrifying discovery of the bodies of 71 people suffocated in the back of a refrigerator lorry on the road from Budapest to Vienna last week has dissuaded refugees from trusting unscrupulous people traffickers.

Mohammed, an economist from the Syrian city of Aleppo, said the chaos was the worst he has seen since leaving Syria.

He had bought a ticket to Munich for €200 (£147) after Hungarian police told him on Monday night they would be allowed to leave.

But despite showing a valid Syrian passport to officers guarding the platform, he was told he could not board because he did not have a visa for Germany.

Hungary’s Interior Minister announced that over 156,000 “illegal migrants” had entered the country as of yesterday, with around 142,000 requesting asylum, including 45,000 Syrians.

Defence Minister Csaba Hende told parliament that 3,500 troops could be sent to the southern border with Serbia to stop more refugees arriving.

With Hungary’s prime minister, Viktor Orbán, taking the lead, the European Union (EU) and its constituent states are adopting an increasingly repressive approach to the growing number of refugees fleeing to the EU from Syria and other war-torn countries in the Middle East and Africa: here.

This video, recorded in England, says about itself:

WikiLeaksJulian Assange on Europe’s Secret Plan for Military Force on Refugee Boats from Libya

27 May 2015

WikiLeaks has just revealed secret details of a European Union plan to use military force to curb the influx of migrants from Libya. “The documents lay out a military operation against cross-Mediterranean refugee transport networks and infrastructure,” WikiLeaks says. “It details plans to conduct military operations to destroy boats used for transporting migrants and refugees in Libyan territory, thereby preventing them from reaching Europe.” WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange discusses the EU’s plan from his place of refuge inside Ecuador’s London embassy.

Also from The Morning Star:

EU’s no friend to refugees

Wednesday 2nd September 2015


IT IS hard to know what planet Nigel Farage is on when he claims the European Union has “sent a message” that refugees are welcome.

How, exactly, is this message being sent?

By the cramped and crowded detention centres springing up in Greece, Italy and other EU member states?

By the razor-wire fence being constructed on the borders of Hungary to keep out foreigners?

By the massive subsidies given to countries such as Bulgaria in order to boost their “border security”?

Farage says he intends to make immigration a major plank of his xenophobic party’s campaign to leave the European Union.

In casually mixing migration statistics, which show record numbers of mostly EU citizens coming to live and work in Britain, and the refugee crisis which has exploded in the Middle East and is beginning to lap against Europe’s shores, he is doing precisely what this newspaper predicted — confusing two separate issues to foster hatred, division and fear.

In this context, Yvette Cooper’s call for distinguishing asylum-seekers fleeing “a new totalitarianism in the Middle East,” by which she presumably means the genocidal Isis terror group, and economic migrants is a step forward.

Unfortunately, in common with the other Labour leadership candidates with the — as ever — honourable exception of Jeremy Corbyn, she has not acknowledged the key role that Britain’s foreign policy choices have played in setting fire to the Middle East.

That is why the stream of waspish insults from the Blairite undead about how Corbyn’s advocacy of “jaw-jaw” rather than “war-war” — which actually echoes Tory hero Winston Churchill’s stated preference — makes him unfit to lead the Labour Party is so wrong-headed.

More interventions and more bombings will not end the crises which have forced millions to flee for their lives — only a tiny proportion of whom, we should remember, have sought safety in Europe.

At the same time progressives and trade unionists must not be prompted into a knee-jerk defence of an EU which has done much to precipitate this crisis simply because Farage’s anti-foreigner rants get our goats.

Angela Merkel may have shown more compassion for asylum-seekers than David Cameron has done, but almost in the same breath she issued a stern reminder to the people of Greece that the wholesale privatisation of their country remains non-negotiable, however they vote in their next election.

The EU is busily negotiating the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), which will subordinate our elected governments to the diktats of trans­national corporations.

Cameron’s “renegotiation” won’t change that one iota. Indeed, our Prime Minister has expressed his frustration that the TTIP deal is not being forced through quickly enough.

The rulings of the European Court of Justice — most famously in the Viking and Laval cases — have made it clear that trade union rights are trumped when they come into conflict with corporate interest.

There is nothing working people can salvage from this rotten and anti-democratic alliance. We are best off out of it.

But the campaign to leave cannot be left to the likes of Ukip. Farage’s decision that his party will run its own separate campaign to leave is all to the good — we on the left want nothing to do with it or him.

It was no accident either that he mentioned “two existing” campaigns to leave, the Westminster-based Business for Britain and the corporate funded Know campaign, but did not acknowledge the existence of Trade Unionists Against the EU, which makes the socialist and democratic case for exit.

It is ultimately the labour movement which must come to recognise that our freedom to build a better society — one, indeed, that would welcome the desperate with open arms — requires breaking the chains of EU membership.

If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don’t change Europe’s attitude to refugees, what will? Here.

The Conservative government in the UK has stepped up its offensive against immigrants, with Home Secretary Theresa May stating in a Sunday Times op-ed column that net migration into the country is “far too high”: here.

Employers, landlords, bank staff: meet the new border ‘police’. Thousands of British citizens are being co-opted into the war on asylum-seekers and migrants. It’s a sinister extension of state power, writes LIZ DAVIES: here.

IMAGES OF DROWNED SYRIAN BOY BRING RENEWED ATTENTION TO MIGRANT CRISIS Aylan, the drowned 3-year-old Syrian boy seen around the world yesterday, had a tragic story all too common in the current migrant crisis. And here’s why activists believe such horrific images are so important. [NYT]

16 thoughts on “Hungarian, Austrian anti-refugee policies

  1. Thursday 3rd September 2015

    posted by Morning Star in World

    Chaos across Europe as crisis claims more lives

    AT LEAST 11 refugees drowned yesterday after people-trafficking boats capsized while taking them from Turkey to Greece.

    The latest tragedy in the ongoing European refugee crisis came as rail chaos again gripped Hungary’s capital Budapest and the French port of Calais.

    Turkey’s Dogan news agency reported that a boat carrying 16 people sank in international waters after leaving the Turkish resort of Bodrum early yesterday for the Greek island of Kos in the Aegean Sea. Seven of the migrants drowned, while four were rescued.

    Hours later, a second boat carrying six migrants sank off the coast of Bodrum. A woman and three children drowned, while two passengers in life vests made it to the shore half unconscious.

    On the Greek island of Lesbos further north, three refugees who had gone missing overnight on Tuesday were found alive and rescued by a fishing boat.

    A search and rescue operation involving a helicopter, a Greek coastguard patrol boat and a vessel from the European border patrol force Frontex had been launched when the three were reported missing off the coast.

    The coastguard said it had rescued 1,058 people at sea in 28 incidents off eastern Aegean islands from Tuesday morning to Wednesday morning.

    Channel tunnel services from Calais were severely delayed after refugees trespassed on the tracks and reportedly climbed on top of trains in an attempt to reach Britain.

    Passengers arriving at London’s St Pancras station complained of being left on the train for hours without food and in darkness and high temperatures after the power was cut.

    They described how one train was searched for two hours after desperate refugees tried to climb on top to make a perilous ride through the 26-mile tunnel.

    In Budapest, hundreds of refugees chanted defiant slogans outside Keleti international railway station as police blocked them for a second day from boarding trains to Austria and Germany.

    Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban will take a “clear and obvious message” to today’s Brussels meeting of EU leaders on the migrant crisis, a government spokesman said.


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