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15th European Conference on Asylum in Greece



The European Conference on Asylum which is held for over 15 years now in different places among church based organisations in Europe will take place this year in Greece (Chios and Athens). Addressees of the conference are multipliers in the field of assisting refugees and asylum seekers, from counseling and social work to advocacy work on different levels in - but not only -  church based organsiations from European countries organized under the umbrella of CCME. Conference language will only be English.

In the light of the current developments in the EU, the EU-Turkey-declaration and the current reform of the Common European Asylum System (CEAS), we chose Greece as conference venue in 2018, also as a sign of solidarity because of the still difficult reception conditions and the challenges of the Greek asylum system.

The first part of the conference will take place in Chios. On-site, the challenges at the EU's external borders in the Vial hotspot and on the Aegean islands will be examined through discussions with NGOs, refugees and local politicians. The Human Rights Commissioner of FRONTEX Immaculada Arnaez will be invited to clarify the role of the External Borders Agency.

In Athens, we would talk to Greek asylum authorities (Greek Asylum Service, GAS, and the Dublin Unit), refugee organisations and churches. Here we will discuss the situation of the Greek asylum system, in particular the question of the impact of the EU-Turkey Declaration and its lawfulness as well as the distribution of refugees and asylum seekers in the EU through the Dublin-system. We hope to win a judge from the Greek State Council (highest administrative court), who recently ruled on whether Turkey is a safe third country for refugees (which they affirmed with narrow majority). We want to discuss the current reform of the Common European Asylum System, with its controversial extension of the safe  country concepts and proposals for reform of the Dublin system. The excursions are intended to illustrate the refugee work of local churches and NGOs. Furthermore, there is room for exchange and understanding of the positioning of different churches and organisations within the circle of participants. The agenda will be send out soon.

As always, the end of the conference will be a press release with common demands and suggestions from the churches in Europe.

The conference has the following objective:

• Discussion and positioning of churches in the European area on refugee and asylum policies
• Networking of practitioners and church or association representatives in refugee and asylum policies in Greece and other European countries
• Information on current challenges of the Greek asylum system, protection quotas, detention, procedures, with visits to local facilities in Chios and in Athens
• Exchange of participants on the priority themes of the Common European Asylum System and the situation of refugees in Greece

Feel free to register and a warm welcome in October!


Participation Fee and Travel Arrangements

The participation fee is 500,00 € per person plus own travel costs to the conference and back home (to Chios on October 15th and from Athens on October 20th). After registration please book the flights: at the 15th to Chios airport and from Athens airport at 20th October.

We will organize and pay the flight from Chios to Athens on 17th October for all participants.

The fee includes full accomodation, food and transport (also the domestic flight from Chios to Athens on October 17th) during the conference, so you will be fully covered. You will receive an invoice from us for the fee.

If you are not able to pay the participation fee or travel expenses please let us now ( Funding is especially available for partners of Churching helping churches.

Day participation (free entry, food and drinks) - please do only fill in here if you will attend individual days only as a daily participant

Accomodation and Food

For information only (we will book all accomodation for you):

Accomodation and Conference Venue Chios:
Chandris Hotel Chios

Accomodation Athens:
Fresh Hotel Athens

Conference Venue Athens:
Impact Hub Athens

If accomodation depends on your flight, please inform about your travel dates, thank you!



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The registration for this event has ended.