Stories about Western Europe from September, 2015
Spartathlon, Where the Noble Spirit of Athleticism Humbly Prevails
Once a year, long-distance athletes from all over the world run 246 kilometers from Athens to Sparta, participating in what is considered the world's "most grueling race"—the Spartathlon.
By Land or By Sea? Refugees Trying to Leave Turkey Face Tough Decisions
As Turkey and its neighbors consider how to handle the millions of refugees looking for homes, Iraqi refugee Amer Mohammad camps outside an Istanbul bus station, waiting to travel.
Greece’s Latest Transport Deputy Minister Was Too Racist, Homophobic, and Anti-Semitic to Keep His Job
The reason for the sudden ouster were revelations that, over the past two years, Kammenos published on a now-deactivated Twitter account, @portaporta ("door-to-door"), several racist, anti-Semitic, and homophobic remarks.
A Series of Outrageous Events Fuels Catalans’ Distrust Before Historic Election on Independence
The Catalan people's distrust towards the Spanish government has been exacerbated by several unfortunate public faux-pas in the weeks prior to Catalonia's regional "independence" election on September 27.
‘We Are Here To Support You': A Dutch Welcome for Refugees
Volunteers at Amsterdam's Central Station have banded together to welcome and support arriving refugees. "What I didn’t anticipate," writes Faten Busheri, "are the stories they would tell me."
Charlie Hebdo's Cartoons of Alan Kurdi Spark Another Round of Free Speech Debates
French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo kicks off a new free-speech debate with its latest cartoons about the refugee crisis and specifically deceased Syrian toddler Alan Kurdi.
What Could a Protest of Taxi Drivers in Lisbon and Jakarta Possibly Have in Common? Uber!
Uber is challenging the taxi business concept all around the world. Portuguese taxi drivers are reacting very seriously: with protests. The same is happening in Indonesia.
Netizen Report: Refugee Crisis Inspires Both Love and Hate Online
As the refugee crisis spills into digital rights territory, authorities take aim at a leading media freedom NGO in Ecuador, and Austria's parliament proposes new state surveillance regime.
Refugees Met with Generosity and Suspicion in France
Despite enduring fear and suspicion towards refugees, many citizens initiatives have been launched or scaled up in France to meet their needs.
‘Beyond a Simple Solidarity’: Portugal’s New Donation Drive for Syrian Refugees in Hungary
A solidarity convoy will take donations from Portugal to the refugees in Hungary. The initiative created by a group of citizens its named Aylan Kurdi Caravan to honour him.
Remembering the Great Fire of Smyrna, 93 Years Ago
The Smyrna Catastrophe is widely considered the worst incident of modern Greek history, and the plight of the refugees halted the Greco-Turkish relations for many decades.
Ordinary Danes Offer ‘Welcome’ Antidote to Government's Anti-Refugee Ad
Danes crowdfunded an ad welcoming refugees after the Danish Ministry for Foreigners, Integration and Housing announced its intention to publish one dissuading refugees from travelling to Denmark.
Iranian Newsha Tavakolian Wins Prestigious Prince Claus Award for Her ‘Bold’ Photography
She dedicated her award to "all colleagues who risk their lives telling stories of others that no one listens too.''
Volunteer Initiatives a Key Part of Welcoming Refugees in Germany
Volunteer projects for refugee aid are making an important contribution towards building a caring and peaceful community, though in many respects they are left unaided by German state policy.
An ‘Appeal to Affection and Empathy’: Barcelona's Mayor Wants Spain’s Cities to Welcome Refugees
Barcelona Mayor Ada Colau's idea to create a network of refuge-cities for refugees has become a real-life plan after a Facebook comment went viral.
The Privilege of My Canadian Passport Weighs Heavy As the Refugee Crisis Unfolds
Passport privilege is perhaps the most valuable thing in the middle of the unfolding refugee crisis. Should a document be able to determine life or death in this world?
GV Face: How Volunteers in Europe Are Opening Their Hearts and Homes to Refugees
As governments are struggling to address the growing refugee crisis in Europe, ordinary citizens in Greece, Germany, and Hungary are organizing and even offering their homes to help refugees.
How You Can Help Syrian (and Other) Refugees
The refugee crisis in Europe has many asking how they can direct their funds and attention to Syrian and other refugees.
Hundreds of Austrians and Germans Turn Out to Welcome Refugees Arriving From Hungary
Refugees travelling through Austria to Germany were greeted with applause at train stations by Austrians and Germans bearing not only good will, but food, water sanitary products and toys.