Refugees, Activists and Humanitarians – all criminals?

At various occasions, UAI affiliates in London, Berlin and Rome discussed the findings and implications of Sarah Hammerl’s report Asylum Criminalisation in Europe and its Humanitarian Implications”, commissioned and published by UAI in May 2019.

On 18 June 2019, UAI in Rome held its first public event at the Foreign Correspondents club where international and Italian journalists debated issues around the criminalisation of asylum. On 22 July 2019 in Berlin, Sarah Hammerl (UAI) and Muhammad al-Kashef from WatchTheMed-Alarm Phone, together with Sonja Hövelmann from the Centre for Humanitarian Action (CHA), organised the panel discussion “Refugees, Activists and Humanitarians – all criminals?”, which focused on the increasing criminalisation of sea rescue and the implications of migration criminalisation for humanitarian access and civic engagement in Europe.

Together with practitioners, activists and academics from UK, Rome and Germany, UAI also held a first online session on “Decriminalising Asylum” to exchange views and perspectives, and discuss possible ways and means to counter these recent developments. A short documentation of the meetings will follow soon and more activities will be planned in the autumn, so feel free to kindly let us know in case you would like to receive more information about our work specifically on asylum criminalisation. Email us at:

Drawing: ©Paola Formica

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