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Highest Court Netherlands allows starving refugees into dangerous deportations...

Nieuws, gepost door: Pieter Smit op 26/11/2015 11:11:20

Wanneer: 26/11/2015 - 10:30

Last year, Europe told the Netherlands that it is not allowed to literally starve rejected refugees into accepting their 'voluntary' deportation. However today the highest court in the Netherlands allowed the government to continue to starve refugees into deportation. Because they can get food if they accept to cooperate and work on their own deportation. Even though we know several people from or through our movement who, after deportation, actually really did get tortured, killed or kidnapped.

This is about refugees who could not proof their case, but who know from previously returned refugees that they likely will be jailed, tortured or might even die from violence if they are sent back. Or who are refused back by their country, so even if they want to go, they can't.

In 4 landmark cases, the highest administrative courts of the Netherlands, allowed the government to refuse food and shelter to rejected refugees, if these refugees refuse to cooperate with their 'voluntary' return. Beceause of other laws, it is impossible for refugees who can't prove their asylum claim (yet), to get any income. Even churches who tried to fill the gap, have been threatened with high fines and possible arrests. Combined, this is a policy of starving people back into often murderous countries.

Until today, we, refugees, volunteers from the We Are Here-movement, (and a fantastic lawyer) managed to force cities all over Netherlands, to fill the gap and allow these people at least into Bed Bath Bread (night shelter under WMO-social protection law). But today's final verdict will probably mean that cities will receive orders from the central government to hand over these shelters to the Deportation and Transfer Department (DT&V) who will transform them into prison-like return ghetto's, disconnecting the refugees from Netherlands, effectively depriving them of freedoms of movement, organization and speech. If refugees agree to go along, every morning they will wake up with the fear of today actually getting deported, often without prior notice. So likely most will dodge.

It is unsure how national and local politics will react, but we know all strata of politics anxiously waited for this outcome. The badly polling social democrats previously promised to force their own coalition government to comply with the European verdict, but it is unlikely they really will, as the other half of the coalition openly flirts with breaking the government and going after the extreme right.

This is a sad day, because we hoped that today the RvS and CRvB magistrates would have had the courage to force the Netherlands to comply with the European verdict. Especially because in the past, the Netherlands always got angry when other European countries ignored such rulings.

Now we (refugees and volunteers) have a huge problem: Because the path of getting the wrongly rejected into social shelter (under WMO) is now closed, most of those who went there, will come back to the movement. It will be very difficult to find the energy and (also financial) ability to help even larger numbers of refugees in the Wij Zijn Hier-movement to squat and feed themselves.

From: Pieter Smit, one of the volunteer with We Are Here-refugee movement, Amsterdam Netherlands.

(See for We Are Here:

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