5. – 8.2. in Berlin, Düsseldorf, Tanger und Ceuta: transnational actions against the war against migrants +++ 14.2.2015 Refugee Protest Camp Hannover goes Berlin +++ From 25.2. on: Start of Push Back Frontex – Campaign +++ Refugee activists imprisoned +++ On the death of Khaled Idris Bahray +++ Greece – If elections could change anything? +++ On 18.3. in Frankfurt: Blockupy against ECB +++ Retrospect on Oury Jalloh- and Hamburg-demonstration +++ Campaign against strengthening of the asylum law +++ New Pro Asyl Stop-Dublin-Campaign +++ Outlook on March: from 24.3. on to the World Social Forum in Tunis…
On the full table of contents, it can be seen already: quite a lot is going on and there is plenty to report in February. Besides a number of supra-regional meetings and appointments we want to promote in the Annex – initiated by the transnational action days on the anniversary of the Ceuta victims – there are three campaigns running or starting these days. We already broached these issues and the question why the asylum law is strengthening must be fought in the last newsletters: preventing the establishment of further grounds for applying a custody pending deportation remains crucial for the resistance against the local policy of deterrence. This focus furthermore allows us to bridge to the second campaign presented below: the campaign against the Dublin Regulation. It was launched by Pro Asyl in January and works on juridical and practical resistance against deportation to Italy and South East Europe as well as for the further strengthening of Church Asylum and an opposition to the new grounds for detention due to the Dublin Regulation.
Existing and planned asylum injustice – where could it be just better addressed and attacked as on the anti-Pegida protests. As it is – on the one hand – encouraging that except for some few cities in the East of Germany the right wing mob could not gain ground in the streets so that instead the few hundred racists face several thousands of counter-demonstrators from Lübeck to Freiburg.
But as already formulated in the last Kompass: on the other hand, there remains the danger that – while the media and even Merkel dissociate themselves from “xenophobic crowd” – the above mentioned asylum law strengthening are carried in the slipstream of this wide protests. Though, we need to make an issue out of this hypocrisy and to confront all those – especially within the social democrats and green party – who are co-responsible when refugees are supposed to end up behind bars just because they don’t have (correct) papers. We will also mention and we shall not forget that opposing refugees are again and again put in prison because of their protest.
Let’s now briefly talk about the third campaign that is being planned, which is – due to recent events – aimed against the EU Border Managment Agency. Its title is “Push Back Frontex” and we already wrote about this “scandal in the scandal” in the January-Newsletter. It is a German Border Official, Klaus Rösler, who – in the name of Frontex – criticizes the Italian Authorities for their rescue-policy in the central Mediterranean and call more or less publicly to leave them to die. A many-months campaign on this issue shall start on 25 February, when this Frontex official will appear at the Police Congress in Berlin. The concrete experiences of the WatchTheMed Alarmphone are last but not least the background of this initiative as they are regularly documented on http://watchthemed.net/. Our intended aim is to push back from the external borders if not to call for an abolishment of the Border Management.
At the same time exciting things happen at another external border, where Frontex has been covering politically for years the illegal push backs by the local coast guard: in Greece. With the great victory of Syriza, the “coalition of the radical left”, in the early elections in January new spaces of change emerge, not only in the fight against the brutal austerity and crisis policies but also against the inhumane detention and border regime. Although Syriza entered into a coalition with the right nationalists of the so-called “independent Greeks” (Anel) (or had to enter due to a lack of alternatives), at the moment a lot speaks for a break with the previous deterrence and detention policy of the previous Governments (see link below). The coming weeks will show whether elections can sometimes change something.
It is sure though that the power institutions in Brussels, Berlin and Frankfurt will use all their means of blackmail and leverage – with regard to the crisis and migration policies – in order to keep the new Greek government within the EU directives of exploitation and exclusion. Important is therefore what solidarity protests – such as the ones in Spain these last days – are launched in the rest of Europe against the troika and the border regime. In this respect the delayed opening of the new tower of the European Central Bank on 18 March in Frankfurt maybe considered to happen with a nearly perfect timing. The preparations for blockades and a mega demonstration in the Rhein-Main metropolis are proceeding at full speed in order to give a radical sign of Europe-wide, transnational solidarity. Noborder goes Blockupy – the antiracist contribution to the crisis protest – should therefore preferably turn out stronger this time, all according to the slogan for the current mobilisation: Achtzehn-Null-Drei, nimm dir frei! (March 18, take a day off!)
All the best,