You have to be strong Madam!

 Transcript of a phone call by a detainee in Steenokkerzeel

“This is not normal at all Madam,

It is not a prison here, it is a waiting room and for somme even a death row. A closed waiting room. No one knows for how long they have to wait: several weeks, sometimes several months, no one knows what is going to happen to them, released or deported?

Personally I don’t care. I don’t have no wife or children. I have two arms, two legs and a brain. Whether I am in my country or here, it’s not the end of my life.

But there are other people, Madam, for whom the situation is serious. There are many Afghans, every day new ones are coming. They are going to be sent under the bombs Madam.

And then you have Guineans who are extremely scared because a new consul who delivers free passes and if they go back to their country it will be extremely dangerous for them Madam.

Then you have people who come out of prison, they followed rehabilitation schemes in jail, they could regularly see their kids, meetings organised for their children not to suffer too much from the separation, then they are deported. No dad anymore. Does it make sense?

And what about Congolese? I saw them leaving (during a group deportation flight) chained and surrounded with many policemen, just like slaves. Will you let that happen Madam?

If you come to the demonstration on Sunday (, you’ll have to be strong Madam. Not only shout, sing and dance: bring cameras and do plenty of things.

You have to be strong Madam.

What you do is not good Madam: you put us in a waiting room and you come to support us from time to time.
You have to be stronger Madam. What you do is not good Madam.
You must help us, not support us Madam.

We are doing our best here, but you don’t do anything Madam!

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