The Foreigners Office refuse asylum requests but continue to deport.
On 16 March 2020, the day before the confinement, two Guineans were deported to Conakry.
An Ethiopian had to go through a thrid deportation attempt on 19 March 2020. He was driven to the airport to then be brought back to the closed centre afterwards. Neither his lawyer nor himself were informed of the reason for this deportation attempt and its last minute cancellation.
Many people remain retained in the different centres of the country and several lawyers’ offices thrive to have them released, either by introducing release requests or by putting pressure on the Foreigners Office.
All these retentions have become illegal due the world health crisis because the administrative retention of a foreigner is only allowed to ensure their fastest deportation. When, as is currently the case, the deportation becomes hypothetical if not impossible, the retention is no longer legal.
On 19 March 2020, Maggie De Block declared that the number of places in closed centres would be decreased to 315 places: 127bis Steenokkerzeel: 60 places – Caricole : 50 – Brugge : 60 – Holsbeek: 14 – Merksplas: 71 – Vottem: 60 and that 300 retainees would be released ‘in the following days’.
Many retainees are still waiting for their release which depends on the arbitrary decision by the Foreigners Office. Others will remain imprisoned despite the health crisis and the impossibility to deport them.
We demand the release of everybody and the definitive closure of the closed centres.
If you know of a person retained in a closed centre, please warn us rapidly on email@example.com !
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