There was a lot of talk about us, now we’re speaking – Ellwangen refugees’ press conference 9.5.2018
The VOICE Refugee Forum
A Very Big SALUTE to the Refugee Resistance in Ellwangen
With a strong and powerful fist raised towards the sky, we The VOICE Refugee Forum salute the bravery and courage of our fellow refugee brothers and sisters, for valiantly preventing the callous and inhuman deportation of a Togolese refugee and defending his right to human dignity.
Since the incident last Monday and the unsubstantiated Police allegation of “attack and violence” by refugees, the German mainstream and tabloid media have literally gone into overdrive to report on it. Yet, they are unable to report what the refugees are saying and experiencing. Any surprise? Not at all, because this is obviously an attempt to broaden and advance the underlying anti-refugee politics and policies of the German government, deliciously but dangerously spiced with racist motives and narratives. The press is refusing to report on the unhealthy, horrible and unbearable conditions that refugees are forced to live in, where refugees are crammed together like slaves on slave ships. They are failing to report that refugees are being deported with violence by the German authorities to countries (including Italy and others in Europe and beyond) where neither the safety of their lives nor their human dignity can be guaranteed. Is it any wonder that attempted and actual suicide by refugees are on the increase as a result of the hopelessness and lack of perspectives they are served with in this “Rechtsstaat”? Where is the press on these issues? There is a deafening silence!
...unsubstantiated Police allegation of “attack and violence” ("Several injured after huge police operation at ‘rebel’ asylum home" https://www.thelocal.de/20180503/hundreds-of-police-officers-deployed-a…)
Yes, rechtsstaat! The feckless politicians are head over heals tripping themselves on the way to see who can wear the badge of ‘the nastiest’ to the refugees. They are racing to the rotten bottom in condemnation of a legitimate resistance to oppression, violence and inhumanity in the name of rechtsstaat and hospitality that ‘must not be trampled on’. How cynical, disingenuous and hypocritical of you to even mention rechtsstaat and hospitality with your ‘lager’ mentality and how you treat refugees in those filthy camps. We are not even going into your shameless, dubious and corrupt collaboration with dictators all over Africa including Togo where this refugee fled from in the first place. You are so upright with your rechtsstaat that you reach agreements with and pay these dictators who in turn employ militias to brutalise and maim men, women and children seeking refuge from the dangerous situation that you facilitate with your economic interests. If the experience in these camps is what you define as hospitality, we heartily invite you to check into one of these camps (yes, there is still enough space for you and your family) and enjoy it. If you are too cowardly to take that offer, we ask you in very clear terms to take your hospitality and shove it!!!
The allegation of aggression, attack and violence by the police as widely reported in the media is so far, nothing more than a bogus claim as there is up till the moment of writing, no evidence to substantiate those claims. While the police managed to mis-inform and the press ran with the misinformation that the refugees injured scores of police officers – supposedly, officially the Police could only confirm that only one officer was slightly injured (see Taz, 3.5.18 "Was geschah in Ellwangen?" www.taz.de/!5500584/). Worse still is the allegation of weapons that the refugees supposedly had which also turned out to be flatly false. Unable to prove that the refugees were violent as alleged, the Police resorted to redefine and equate violence with coercion. Perhaps the Police need to be reminded of what violence is: violence is when you chained Oury Jalloh to the mattress in a police station in Dessau and burned him alive. Violence is when you forcibly pumped emetics into Laye Conde and killed him in a police station in Bremen, just as Achidi John in Hamburg. Violence is when you fatally shot Dominique Kumadio near his apartment in Dortmond just like you shot and killed Christie Schwundeck at the Job Centre in Frankfurt, and Mariamme Sarr in Ascherffenburg. Violence is when policemen raped women (who were to be deported) and filmed it, in police station in Bremen. Got it? The list goes on!!!
In our view, two things are particularly worth noting here. First, it is important to put these into some perspectives and understand that this is a carefully pre-planned and coordinated effort by the authorities to break the resistance of refugees to deportation. Moreover, it is to provide a political cover, legitimisation and justification for the unwarranted violence and brutality that the police are most likely to exert in any future deportation attempts. They have admitted this much in public and their action on Thursday confirms this. But it remains to be seen if the public will rise in support of human decency and respect of the vestiges of refugee rights in this country or they will submit to manipulation and be conned by these sinister machinations. For anyone who has been invested in any way in the pervasive and now-fading refugees welcome, it is time to shed that superficiality and get real and show some solidarity with these maligned refugees.
Second, there is nothing criminal about the desire to live a safe and secured life irrespective of how Germany and others may view it today. Millions of people migrated from Germany/Europe to seek better and secured lives in other countries and continents and so it is nothing new. Refugees are in this country exactly for this reason and “We are here because you destroy our countries”!!! So any attempt to deny us the opportunities to realise this is sure to be met with resistance. This is why refugee resistance is guaranteed to continue in Germany irrespective of the politics and policies of the German/European authorities or the number of policemen and women and their vehicles. It is in this spirit of resistance that we SALUTE the courageous action of refugees in Ellwangen.
Long Live the Resistance!!!