17/07/2017 Call from Bruges: “Who can we turn to, Miss?”
Fifteen days ago, around forty people made a written request to the direction. Two representatives of the group met the direction. Thy asked daily showers and partial freedom to move around the centre. The problem is that they are detained all together during the night and that in the early morning some detainees get up and wake up the others. They suggested to open the door so that people who wake up can go the the room where they spend the rest of the day, letting the others sleep. They still haven’t received an answer to their requests and don’t know what else to do.
“Who can we turn to, Miss?”
17/07 Merksplas immigration detention centre: the Robocops in the centre
It was the end of Ramadan. It was very hot. Detainees asked to meet the director of the centre. They sleep in cells occupied by five people where it’s very hot. They wanted to ask the director to open the only small window at night, to air the cell. They also wanted to inform him that the quantity of food was far from sufficient. The director came to the romm to meet them. During the meeting, while the director carefully took note of their requests, the room was invaded by helmeted and armed robocops (surely called by the director). Some robocoffs aimed their weapon at the detainees, others drew their truncheon. Five detainees were bludgeoned and violently put in solitary confinment, where they stayed three days. One of them still suffers from the physical consequences of this treatment.
“We are treated like terrorists”.
“We have no rights. As soon as we make a request, they put us in solitary confinment”
“They are the outlaws”
“Who are the criminals?”
“This is brutality”
“To them we are not human beings, just animals to be crushed”
“Should we contact the animal welfare organisations?”
“Who will listen to us one day?”
“We must alert the media!”
“The most renowned lawyer can not do anything. Francken is above the law”