Osman (not his real name) is an Alevi Kurd and has been on hunger strike for two weeks in the Caricole detention centre near Brussels.
He refuses to be sent back to Poland and to be one of those people that the Dublin Regulation allows to be sent back to Europe’s borders in undignified conditions. While the government is currently accelerating pressure on so-called dublinized people, Osman’s situation is a testament to the devastating effects of this regulation.
Locked up for almost two months, he has no other choice. His request is simple: to be released from the threat of deportation to Poland and Turkey, and to be able to apply for asylum in Belgium.
When he arrived in Europe, the fear of being sent back to Turkey prevented Osman from eating for twelve days. He arrived in Belgium in March 2022 and was arrested and locked up on 23 August in the Caricole detention centre. He left Turkey because he was in danger because of his Kurdish origin and his religious beliefs. In order to enter Europe, he obtained a visa for Poland, but never went there because he wanted to come to Belgium to be reunited with part of his family.The Dublin Regulation allows Belgium to send him back to Poland, where he has never been and does not know anyone, to process his asylum application.
On 6 October, a flight was scheduled to deport him to Warsaw. He was able to refuse it, but fears that another attempt will be made to deport him, and that this will be the first step towards a forced return to Turkey. Despite legal means to assert his claim for international protection in Belgium, he decided to go on hunger strike on 5 October without drinking for the first six days.
He explains his choice in these words: “I prefer to end my life protesting against being ignored here rather than being sent to Turkey and dying.
The flaws of the medical service.
Fatigue, weight loss, difficulty walking,frequent dizziness, fainting and severe stomach ache are the main symptoms Osman suffers from, while the medical service at the centre pays little attention to his complaints. An external doctor visited him twice and reported several somatic and psychological problems. The biological and urinary analyses she recommended have not yet been carried out by the Caricole medical service.
The Aliens Office continues to ignore the obvious, he must be released urgently so that he can feed again and receive appropriate medical help.
On the morning of October 20th, Osman was forcibly taken on a flight to
Poland. According to witnesses in the center, Osman was put in solitary
confinement yesterday, was tied up and spent the night tied up with a
boxing helmet on his head. Methods that testify to the violence and
relentlessness of the authorities. Despite his very poor health
described in an independent medical report, the administration wanted to
deport him at all costs. Osman testifies: "They put me on the plane with
four policemen holding me, my hands and feet were tied. Two policemen
were constantly watching me. As soon as I moved, they grabbed my head,
pushed it down and covered my mouth. I was tied up all the time."
The effects of the recent strengthening of the Dublin Regulation
Almost two months ago, the new “Dublin centre” opened in Zaventem, which Secretary of State Nicole De Moor is already using to intensify a system that has been strongly criticised by NGOs. Osman is now one of the many victims of the Dublin regulation and the recent acceleration of procedures ordered by the government.
By its stubbornness in keeping him in detention in an extremely worrying state, Belgium is admitting the possibility of killing him.
Furthermore, we learn that a dozen Afghans, also from Dublin, are locked up in 127 bis.
It is important to note that the administrative violence implied by the Dublin regulation and, in general, the procedures linked to migration and regularisation are all traumas and violence that are added to people’s experiences.
STOP ALL DEPORTATIONS