Stop Deportation! Papers For All!

22. April: Day of action against the Interior Ministers Conference 2006 The Interior Ministers Conference (IMC) is the most influential body when it comes to decisions on rules for asylum. But for years, the central theme of the half-yearly conferences has been the intensification and expansion of mass deportations. This is in direct contradiction with the incontestable right to asylum. This right is fought for every day: in resistance against deportations, in the everyday struggle against bureaucratic decisions and magistrates’ orders, in overcoming the deadly European border fortifications and in actions to collect money for lawyers or for medical care. Against this, camps, deportations and illegalisation are the instruments brought to bear against the practical exercise of freedom of movement. Camps – spread across the globe – are intended to hold those who escape from the poverty and destruction caused day by day by the economic and military war machine of the industrialised nations. The division of the planet into zones of poverty and of riches, of lawlessness and access to rights, is continually (re)created. It has long overcome national boundaries, and created new rights-free zones in camps within European borders. Concretely, life in the camps means isolation from the outside world, from the possibilities of legal and political support. In the German deportation camps (“departure centres”), the residents are harried with constant pressure to leave voluntarily or to slip into “illegality”. The system of deportation is expanding. Tens of thousands of people are deported from Germany each year. So-called charter flights are being used increasingly to make resistance against deportations more difficult, leading to more brutalisation of the practice of deportation. “Undesirables” are removed from the country using truncheons and pepper spray, shackled on hands and feet. Documents for the deportations are obtained in cooperation with corrupt regimes and against the substantiated danger of persecution. Legal possibilities of challenge are reduced ever further. The “Zuwanderungsgesetz” (law on immigration) introduced a new range of hurdles, deadlines and conditions which make claims for asylum even formally almost impossible. Illegalisation is often the end result of these measures. “Illegality” is often the only escape from the camps, and a life underground the last defence against deportation. A large number of people live illegalised in Germany. Their numbers are swelling – while at the same time the number of claims for asylum and claims granted has drastically sunken. Instead of asylum, the claimants face camps and deportation, so that more and more people do not even bother to place a claim. Illegalisation is a process; it is created by the increasing impossibility of legal entry, the restrictive practice of refusal and the discriminatory treatment of refugees and migrants. Illegalisation is a state of total loss of rights, and this is not an accident: illegalised workers are an integral part of the employment market. As cleaners, in service jobs, as sex workers or on building sites, they are exploited for minimal wages. These measures are pushed through and accompanied by hypocritical debates and deceitful newspeak. Camps are called “departure centres”, and the racist laws on foreigners are usually referred to as the “law for immigration”. So when the interior ministers, of all people, debate on “rules for the right of residency” as they have in the last few months, this should be taken with a large pinch of salt. While they talk of the “right of residency”, new tighter measures are being prepared: deportation and custody before deportation are to be expanded. The demand for more integration, which can be heard increasingly often, has become the call to arms for precisely those policies which worsen exclusion and intentional “dis-integration”: isolation in camps, bans on working and education, exclusion from medical treatment and social benefits. We call for protests against the IMC, as we will not accept this politics of selection and deportation: the right to residence is not something to be taken away at will! We want papers for all – wherever someone comes from, however full their wallet, whether they have lived here for five days or fifty years. We demand papers for all because we reject the division between “integrated” and “criminal”, “useful” and “useless” refugees or migrants. This division propagates the principle of competition and all-against-all, and the system of deportation and denial of rights can only function on this principle. We fight for the abolition of all racist laws, the residency law, the asylum seeker services law, the ban on work and training, internment in camps and prisons, the denial of medical treatment. With the days of action and the demand for “Papers for all” we want to network and bring together the struggles against deportation. This is why we call for everyone to take part in the actions against the Interior Ministers Conference. For freedom of movement and equal rights – without borders, without conditions and without delay!
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