Algerian friends, beware and hide yourselves! The hunting is open – 08/12/2016

We zoeken achter een vertaler in het nl!

While Belgium tries, in vain, to reinforce the ‘police cooperation’ with Algeria and Théo Francken declares on twitter that they continue working ‘behind the screen’, the hunting goes on. Several dozens of Algerians have been retained for months, sometimes a year, in our closed centres, and these last days we heard that others saw their houses besieged by a dozen of armed policemen early morning, in front of their wives and children, and driven to a closed centre in view of their deportation, unlikely deportation seen the absence of agreement and the reluctancy of the Algerian consulate to deliver let passes in most of the cases…

Is it what they mean by Theo Francken’s ‘work behind the screen’? Using targeted people and their families as hostages in order to put pressure on Algeria ?

Three testimonies:


A woman calls us on the phone: they got officially married at the commune, have two small children, the youngest is 8 months. They are Algerians. She has a 5 years residence permit, he doesn’t have any papers. At the commune they told him that he had to wait. Ten policemen came three days ago at 5 a.m., waking up everybody, to take away the man and bring him to a closed centre. She is desperate and doesn’t understand anything, neither do we…

Five days ago, a man was arrested at his girlfriend’s. They found him     thanks to his Lyca card within the context of a terrorist investigation.    Seven vans full of policemen to arrest him and drive him to the closed  centre.

Testimony by a man who WANTS to return to his home country, entitled “ABSURDITY”

A young Algerian, 21 years old, wants to testify on his behalf and others’ of the absurdity and ill treatments in closed centres. Retainees do not have access to trustworthy information. They ignore everything about their fate. The lawyers or social assistants of the centres do not seem to be helping either. When retainees say they feel sick, they are sent to solitary confinement cells, losing all contacts.

M. came to Belgium 3 years ago, he was 18. He found himself among other young people left behind. He committed thefts in order to survive. No housing, no earnings, life was tough and he paid for that he says. He wants to go on living in dignity. Now he would like his situation to be clarified. He says he agrees to go back to Algeria but it seems they do not send him back there, and they do not release him either. He is stuck at the closed centre and no decisions are taken, in one way or the other. ‘I don’t understand anything’ he says, ‘I agree to go back to Algeria but they do not react’. He would like a clear decision, and not stay in the closed centre where living is too hard. He says that the Belgian Minister was in Algeria this week, but that nothing seems to move since then. The consulate is not willing to give out let passes for Algeria.

Another testimony:

M. is 37, Algerian, retained in Merksplas. He was arrested when doing some shopping. “I entered a shop and in front of everybody they embarked me. I don’t understand, I am not illegal, I have a temporary card and I introduced an official request at the Foreigners Office. I am expecting an answer, I have an address and everything. Why didn’t they come home? Doing that in front of everybody, this is not normal, I am not a terrorist!’
M. introduced a residence request for medical reasons (9ter). After a first refusal he lodged an appeal and is currently waiting for an answer. At the closed centre in Bruges, they tell him that they can not find any evidence, neither of the appeal nor of his medical file. When he explains that he already had three operations to his legs after a serious car accident and that his file is at Ixelles’s Hospital, he is being told ‘we do not care, we have your passport and no evidence of your medical file, we will send you back as soon as possible.’ When he answers that he has another operation planned in two weeks, that they should at least let him finish the process, again he is being told “whether you agree or not, it will be Algeria”.
“It is the Belgian Guantanamo here, there is no Red Cross, no human rights, nothing. I saw a social assistant after two days here, she rang the Foreigners Office in flemish, I didn’t get a word, then she told me “no appeal and no medical file have been found, you will have to leave in 15 days!” In the meantime, M is waiting in pain, his health requires a strict control: pills, physical therapy, etc. The doctor of the centre doesn’t deem necessary to follow the treatment prescribed by the medical file. I got a few painkillers but normally I should get a gel to kill the pain but the doctor said that I don’t need that here, same for the physical therapy!

On Friday 2nd of December , M. heard that a flight booking has been made under his name for the day after, he will be deported at 2 p.m. “I don’t understand, they say that I will go to the airport and that if I don’t want to go on the plane I just have to say it there. It is nonsense, I don’t want to go and my opinion will be exactly the same tomorrow. I don’t get it, it is useless, do they want me to get mad?’ M. is scared of physical constraints, he will not be able to defend himself, he is walking with two crutches. He needs to talk but they isolate him as much as they can: mobile phone withdrawn, transfer to another bloc on the same day, impossible to reach his family or friends to let them know about the evolution of the situation. Everybody is waiting…

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