Balkan Regional Report – February 2022

Summary and analysis of pushbacks and internal violence documented by BVMN during the month of FEBRUARY

In February, the Border Violence Monitoring Network (BVMN) shared 32 testimonies of pushbacks impacting 364 people-on-the-move across the Balkans. This report brings together first-hand testimony from a range of countries in the region to look at the way European Union states and other actors are affecting systemic violence towards people crossing borders.

BVMN is a network of watchdog organisations active in Greece and the Western Balkans including No Name Kitchen, Rigardu, Are You Syrious, MobileInfoTeam, Push-back Alarm Austria, Josoor, InfoKolpa, Centre for Peace Studies, BlindSpots, Mare Liberum, Collective Aid, and Fresh Response. Combining insights from these different members, this month’s report covers:

  • trends in violent pushbacks from North Macedonia, Bulgaria and in BiH
  • 19 bodies found in Evros region
  • a court victory in Austria, where a verdict condemned the pushback of an unaccompanied minor
  • police raids, forced relocations, and raids on attacks on solidarity structures in Serbia
  • MEPs visiting the Western Balkans

Read the full report for more information on these topics, as well as further updates from the region including: the latest developments in Samos and Trieste, a campaign against pushbacks and border violence in Greece, and an update on the ongoing war in Ukraine, highlighting the systemic racism against people of color fleeing the conflict.