Category: Immigration

Fortress Europe?

Hazel Pennington
Domenico Lucano - Wikimedia commons CC SA-BY 4.0

Early in June this year, in the small town of Riace in Calabria, a delegation of three MEPs, activists and representatives of NGOs and other organisations presented a dossier illustrating the extent to which, at the borders of Fortress Europe, the humane treatment of refugees is being not just vilified but actually criminalised. Between January […]

Immigration. Is History just repeating itself?

Martin Griffiths
Little Amal - Source:

The internationally renowned giant puppet of a 10-year-old Syrian displaced child visited Cheltenham this month. ‘Little Amal’ had just left Lviv in Ukraine, where she met displaced children and families fleeing the violence of war. She was in Gloucestershire to mark National Refugee Week. Despite the fact that the UK’s own population is a melting […]


A Migrant’s Prayer

Richard Wain

Update 7 February 2022 – Listen to Richard recite his poem in this video here. I stand in the dark, the waves lap the shore.For days now I’ve travelled, how long I’m not sure.But I’m here at last, about to set sail.To start a new life. To begin a new tale In a land without war where I might find […]

Imprisoned for Daring to Welcome Strangers

Hazel Pennington

In early December, speaking at a refugee camp on the Greek island of Lesvos, Pope Francis called for nations to welcome strangers at their door. One man who spent decades doing exactly that, his efforts praised by the Pope on Italian national television, now faces a prison sentence of thirteen years for his efforts. Domenico […]

Problems Registering in Portugal

James Campbell

On the stroke of midnight (11pm UK time) on 31 January 2020, after 47 years of membership, the UK officially left the EU. There followed an 11 month transition period to 31 December 2020. The clock was then ticking for EU & UK citizens to register their status to ensure they kept their pre-Brexit rights. […]

Mimmo Lucano Sentenced to 13 Years in Prison!

Hazel Pennington

Domenico ‘Mimmo’ Lucano, the former mayor whose efforts to integrate refugees into his small town of Riace in Calabria brought global recognition, was sentenced on 30 September 2021 at the court in Locri to thirteen years and two months in prison. He was also requested to repay €500,000 provided by the EU and the Italian […]

Riace: Solidarity on Trial

Hazel Pennington

In the two decades up to 2018 more than 6,000 refugees passed through the small town of Riace in Calabria.  A good number made their home there. Riace, like much of the Italian south, had for many years suffered depopulation as young people left in search of a better life, leaving behind a predominantly elderly […]