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On 17 May 2018, heads of state at the EU-Western Balkans summit in Sofia will discuss cooperation in several areas, amongst them migration and security. A coalition of NGOs including Oxfam call on EU and Balkan leaders to address a number of concerns, such as humane border management, the protection of civil society, and the right to seek asylum.
Violence, brutality and unlawful treatment by authorities on the Western Balkan route are a frequent occurrence, claim refugees and other migrants in a new NGO report revealed today.
The border closures in the Western Balkans this year have not stopped people seeking safety and a dignified life in Europe, but have forced them to resort to ever more dangerous routes, leaving them even more vulnerable.
This paper provides an analysis of the protection concerns that people on the move, especially women and children, face in Macedonia and Serbia following the closure of the Balkan route. It also presents recommendations on how to protect and promote their safety, dignity and human rights.