Thursday, 18 March 2010

The Indifference Of Immigration Bureaucracy

It is not only in Glasgow that migrants are driven by the indifference of immigration officialdom to desperation and to killing themselves, it happens wherever their is some pettifogging bureaucrat pursuing a government's racist agenda of 'sending them back', whoever 'they' might be.

Yesterday,* an Afghan asylum seeker tried to set light to himself in an Innsbruch petrol station. The 21-year-old entered the petrol station and purchased a lighter. He then went to the forecourt umps and started to douse himself in petrol, but a pump attendant and two other men managed to prevent the self-immolation. Police arrested him and took him to a psychiatric hospital.

That man's reasons for the suicide attempt are unknown but those for David M., a young Georgian who hung himself earlier this month, appear self-evident. He had been in the Hamburg immigration detention centre since the beginning of February after having stopped a police car and asked to apply for asylum. Having no papers and claiming to be only 17 years old he should not have been detained, but as he had already made and been refused applications in Poland and Switzerland, under Dublin II he was to be deported back to Poland and therefore detained.

He began a hunger strike on 7 February. Two weeks later he was transferred to the detention centre hospital, where he was told that he was to be deported to Poland on 9 March. On 6 March, he started to accept solid food, but one day later, he tore up his bedsheets and hung himself.

* Also yesterday evening, a 29-year-old Nigerian died during an attempted deportation at Zurich airport. The man collapsed as he was being 'escorted' on board the deportation flight. He had been on hunger strike for a number of days prior to the flight, had been forcibly handcuffed and was resisting his deportation. The Swiss Federal Office of Migration has suspended further flights pending an autopsy and investigation into the cause of the death.

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