Memorial Day for political Imprisoners

Political Prisoners' Day is celebrated worldwide on March 18 by human rights organizations and activists to support captive activists, fight for their freedom and focus public attention on the crimes of regimes and dictatorships. As an anti-racist initiative, Pro Bleiberechtis in contact with people who risked their lives in their countries of origin almost every day by being politically active. The ones we meet here are the ones who have survived prison and repression.

We also want to speak about some basic information about the latest racist asylum law tightening. Asylum seekers often describe the German asylum system as an “invisible prison”. "This is not a life. They take away the humanity from us ” is a phrase that we hear again and again. This effect is political strategy. Because with the Asylum Act, the Federal Government primarily focuses on deterrence. In addition, the tightening of the law on detention centres, which punishes people for determining where they want to live, is becoming increasingly common.

Increased racism in laws

In June 2019, a legislative package was passed, the core it is:
Isolation, disintegration, deportation. Riddled with a few pseudo-perspectives that, due to their narrow conditions, hardly work for anyone. This legislative package provides the following:

First: The poorest of the poor are to become even poorer: Social benefits for asylum seekers and people with Duldung are already only about 70% of Hartz 4, which is far below the subsistence level. That money is now going to be...
a) regularly lower. By the state imagining the living together in refugee camps as a kind of love relationship and putting people in Bedarfsgruppe 2 (category for how much money the welfare state provides for one person).
b) Cutting these benefits will be even easier for the authorities.
c) In addition, refugees who already have recognition in other EU countries are completely excluded from benefits, as is already the case for many EU citizens.

Secondly, people are isolated for longer in so-called arrival centers. This makes them permanent camps. There, the BAMF is supposed to provide so-called "independent state asylum procedure advice" including "return advice".
The term "independent state" frightens us here. It shows clearly the system with which the state, through clumsy wording and pseudo concessions, mocks and undermines the longstanding demands of NGOs and charity organisations.

Third, people are also systematically socially isolated. A new status was introduced, the so-called 60b-Duldung. This status is intended to force people to organize passport documents and thus their own deportation. This status leads to a ban of work, benefits cuts, residence requirements, easier deprivation of liberty in detention centres. We really have to be afraid of that in MV. Because this status is the wet dream of all racists in German immigration authorities. This status makes it very clear to migrants: you are NOTHING - unless you do what we say.

In addition to 60b-Duldung, social isolation is also promoted by criminalizing supporters. Anyone who reveals and distributes deportation dates will now be punished for violating official secrets. Aid to distributing information is of course also punishable. This is supposed to desolidarize. That should leave the affected refugees alone in the rain.

The tightening of the law is actually about deportation. Alternatively, to wear people down so much that they go by themselves beforehand. The assumption behind this: Every migrant is a potential terrorist. Soon fingerprints will be taken from 6-year-old children. A central personal identification number has been defined for everyone who is listed in the Central Register of Foreigners (Ausländerzentralregister), which bundles all the information the authorities have about them. Goodbye fundamental rights.

Detention centres: Flight is not a crime!

Recently, the Ministry of Justice MV decided to provide the Interior Ministry with 5 places for imprisoning detainiees  in Neustrelitz. From here up to 60 refugees per year are to be deported from here. The regulation was also part of the tightening of the law in 2019. It is based on the suspension of the so-called "separation requirement", which was laid down in a decision of the European Court in 2014. The separation requirement states that asylum seekers must be detained separately from criminals - simply because they have not committed a crime. "Suspension" means (we are also thinking of the current suspension of the right to asylum applications in Greece) that the state is violating applicable law.

Pro Bleiberecht is part of the "Glückstadt without detention centre" alliance. Initiatives from MV, Schleswig-Holstein and Hamburg are protesting against the deportation prison which is currently under construction in Glückstadt. The three federal states each create 20 places in the detention centres. MV plans to deport around 250 people from custody annually in the future. Ten times as many as in previous years. Read more about the deportation prison in Glückstadt on the side of the alliance. Participate in the alliance.

Freedom, support, solidarity - instead of repression and isolation

Whether tightening police law, tightening asylum law or detention centers. We respond to the repression of the authorities: We will continue! We will continue to develop forms of support based on solidarity. We will continue to fight for freedom and against racism in the future.

Because we know from our friends from Honduras, Syria, Russia, and other countries what it means to live in police states and dictatorships. And what it means to be at risk of detention and torture with every demonstration. And hardly being able to breathe because the secret service lurks behind every wall.

Therefore, as a first step of solidarity here in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania: Break through the isolation of asylum seekers in camps! For example, come with us to Horst on March 29th. Start talking to the activists who can report social struggles and injustice around the world. Break through the social isolation, which is caused poverty and insecure residence status! Supports people in detention centres!