kein mensch ist illegal hamburg

"Ihr sollt wissen, daß kein Mensch illegal ist.
Das ist ein Widerspruch in sich. Menschen können schön sein oder noch schöner. Sie können gerecht sein oder ungerecht. Aber illegal? Wie kann ein Mensch illegal sein?"

Elie Wiesel

Sonntag, 12. November 2017

Announcement by the initiative of solidarity to the 14 refugee hunger strikers for family reunification

Refugee Accommodation and Solidarity Space City Plaza hat Hunger Strike:
"Reunite us with our families now"

The 7 women and 7 men are on their twelfth day of hunger strike on
Syntagma, demanding that which should be obvious. Their demands for
reunification with their families in Germany have been accepted by the
Greek and German authorities. Yet while the law requires that
reunification take place within six months of the reunification
application being accepted, this limit has been exceeds, due to the
clandestine deal between Greece and Germany - it is therefore unknown
when refugees will travel.
The authorities of both countries continue the mockery.

• The German government continues to break the law with a view to
restricting the rights of refugees. Due to the pressure created by the
hunger strike, German officials were forced to clarify their position on
family reunification, but these clarifications contradict the truth,
demonstrating an absolute lack of respect for the people putting their
bodies on the line to demand the obvious, and for the hundreds of others
waiting to meet their loved ones.

• The excuses of the German side were that bureaucratic and
administrative issues, mainly on the Greek side, delay the process, as
do tourist seasons and related limited ticket availability. They dodge
the question of whether the German side accepts that charter flights are
needed, as is the case with relocation programs.

• Moreover, on Wednesday 8 November, the German embassy in Greece
forbade women hunger strikers from taking part in the meeting scheduled
for that day, thereby reproducing obscurantist, sexist, and racist
behaviors. They have as yet provided no reason for this insulting and
offensive demand.

• The Greek side, which met with representatives of the hunger strikers,
confines itself to hackneyed promises, which are insensitive to the risk
the hunger strikers’ health is at.

• The Greek side appeared willing to book charter flights only after the
hunger strike began, but confined itself to a general wish only. 5e
question is, why don’t they book the flights straight away? Might this
be because of the framework imposed by the inhuman illegal deal with the
German government?

• The Ministry for Migration Policy, in a show of irrelevance and
mockery, stew that “it is clear that applicants can pay for the trip
with their own means, in order to speed up the reunification process”,
creating misleading impressions. Refugees accepted into the family
reunification program cannot travel within six months, because they are
being given neither a permit nor relevant travel documents by the Greek
authorities, so they are unable to even buy tickets. When, after months
of delays, the Greek Asylum Service does allow them to travel, 5e only
choice they have is to buy flexible tickets from only one travel agency,
at specific prices, currently between 200 and 300 euros per ticket.It is
audacious, to say the least, that the ministry dr sees up this situation
as a concession or facilitation to refugees since Greece, as required by
the European Regulation, must cover travel costs. There are dozens of
refugees whose travel documents have been issued, but who could not pay
for their tickets, and who lost their turn, and have had to join the
queue once more until they are called at a later date.

• Why didn’t the Greek government carry out an international competition
for covering the travel costs for refugees earlier? No matter how many
excuses they put forward, it is clear that the high cost of tickets is
part of the plan to restrict refugee movement. It is clear that the
restrictions on reunification and the other serious issues faced by
refugees remain unsolved not due to administrative, but due to political
In other word, the Greek government is backing the German government,
within the framework of the anti-refugee policies of the European Union,
using administrative decisions signaling inhuman deterrence to future
refugees. It thereby circumvents the Geneva Convention, by pushing
refugees back to “safe third countries”, without examining asylum
requests, and by imprisoning them in terrible refugee camps.

As far as we are concerned, we will remain on the side of the hunger
strikers til the end. We will continue to fight on their side until the
inhuman policy towards refugee families stops, until deportations stop,
until detention centers, wretched camps, and hotspots close, before any
more deaths, until the abolition of the EU-Turkey deal of shame.

Syntagma Square, Athens 12 November 2017