After a long silence from our side because of a lack of candidates ready to listen to the detainees in the centres, we are back again (two of us, so any other candidate is welcome!).
Our first impressions since our little break. A lot of transfers. Several detainees are constantly being transferred from one centre to another because they are ‘disturbing the community life in the centre’, i.e they are seen as rebellious. One of them was severely beaten by the guards at the closed centre of Bruges before his transfer.
- One detainee has been waiting for almost 8 months that they made a DNA test on him to prove that his son who lives in Belgium is actually really is son. He has been living in Belgium for 5 years. He committed an offence and served the sentence that had been decided by the courts, but the Office decided to apply the double penalty to him who did not obey our laws, hence they persist and keep him detained.
- A man who had been living in Belgium for 16 years was arrested 3 weeks ago, again because of his judicial past! He also has three kids here and has to prove it in order not be deported! He categorically refuses to be separated from his children.
- A young boy of 17 years old is being retained in the 127bis closed centre. The codetainees think this is absolutely unacceptable. The children’s rights authorities have been warned but they remain silent. The boy is waiting for a bone examination in order to determine his age; which will give an approximative age with a probability of a 2 years error. If the bone examination reveals that he is for e.g between 17 and 19 years old, they will declare him as major!
- A man has been on hunger strike at the 127bis since August 28th, according to his codetainees. He was driven to the airport on September 1st 2015 for a flight to Marseille. He refused it and was placed in solitary confinement to then be brought back to the 127bis.
The detainees in the 127bis think it is inadmissible that some of their codetainees are recognised as psychiatrically ill and that ‘they should not be there’, that they are in a real prison, and they are really outraged with the incarceration of a young boy.