ASAM organized the training for public officials in the Greek-Turkish borders. Training activities were realized in Edirne during the second week (from 6th to 10th) of March. Presentations by experts, followed by group studies and case analysis contributed a great deal to the understanding of the subjects presented. Social services, identification of vulnerable individuals and access to social facilities, gender and culturally sensitive issues have become the main focus.

ASAM organized training for staff in removal centres on asylum procedure according to EU policies in Izmir during February 27th to March 3rd. The comparative analysis of EU legislations and current practices in Turkey helped the participants gain stronger insight into the national and international laws on migration and asylum procedures. Moreover, the activity can be said to have brought increased awareness towards psychological challenges of working with the refugees.

Both meetings were well received on the beneficiaries’ side and went down as long anticipated and much needed activities. The majority of the participants were public officials from the Directorate General of Migration, operating under the Ministry of Internal Affairs. Following the Coup Attempt in July and the succeeding State of Emergency in Turkey, approximately 200 thousand public officials were either dismissed or reassigned. Withdrawal of experienced personnel from the field -especially from border regions where the illegal immigration rate is much higher- has been a major challenge as new recruits and reassigned personnel lacked the required skills and orientation. Our trainings and workshops, in this perspective, have proven to be successful and resulted with a capacity increase among public officials as approved by the participants themselves.