torsdag 22 oktober 2020

How did a rich trip to Brussels challenge lives of thousands Afghan refugee children in Sweden?

This article was published in farsi or dari in in October 2020. This is a Google translation to English. Not a single detail is changed. 

One spring night in March 2018, when the weather in Sweden was just warm and mild, the atmosphere in Farzad's room (pseudonym) was heavy and cold. The clock was approaching 10 pm and the space of Farzad's mind was as heavy as his room. After a few minutes, he found himself on the ground in front of his friend's house, but he could not remember anything more. Farzad tried to commit suicide and threw himself out of the window of his friend's second house.

An hour later, when Razad regains consciousness, he sees that his clothes are full of blood and he feels a severe pain in his head: "It was unbearable." But his friends and neighbors take him into the room instead of the hospital and use water as the only available medicine to wake Farzad.

Farzad Nojavan, like thousands of other asylum-seeking children and adolescents, received a negative / negative response from the immigration court three times and read the letter of summons to the police and leaving the house. When his head and neck were flushed with blood and he was struggling with excruciating pain, he could not go to the hospital; "I was in a place where I had nothing and no solution," said Sweden, which has been blacklisted in Sweden and denied all services such as bank cards, grants, housing, tuition and more.

According to Swedish child and immigrant rights activists, about 35,000 children applied for asylum in Sweden in 2015, of which about 25,000 went to Sweden from Afghanistan. "Sweden was one of the countries that" really "welcomed these children in 2015, and Swedish families opened their doors to these children:" Families when they found out that orphaned children "After arriving in Sweden after a terrible accident, they decided to take care of these children."

Child rights activists in Europe say most of these children, aged 15 and under, have migrated to war-torn countries such as Afghanistan, Syria, Somalia, Eritrea, Iraq and Ethiopia to seek asylum in Sweden. . Some of these children have smuggled and traveled to Europe alone, and some of these homeless children have been separated from their families and companions during their travels to Europe.

2015 is a good year for unaccompanied children / guardians who have applied for asylum in Sweden. The gates of Swedish families were opened for them, including school and university courses, access to government and citizenship services, and the promise of Swedish citizenship. But this good season will not last long. President Ghani's participation in the Brussels conference marked a bad chapter in the lives of these children in Sweden.

On the sidelines of the Brussels Conference on October 2, 2016, a bilateral agreement entitled "Joint Way Forward" was signed between the Government of Afghanistan and the European Union. Facilitating the deportation of Afghans who are rejected in European countries and preventing the illegal immigration of Afghans to Europe are central to the treaty.

Under the agreement, the European Union will continue to provide assistance to Afghanistan in exchange for the deportation of Afghan refugees, and the Afghan government has pledged to accept the deportees and provide them with a better life in Afghanistan, such as education, employment and security.

At the same time, Afghanistan has signed another bilateral agreement with the Swedish government on the issue of migrants. In this agreement, the Afghan side has pledged to pave the way for a return and a secure life. The agreement between the Afghan government and the European Union provoked strong internal and external protests.

"These agreements are such that they use children to receive money [aid], which we do not think is the right way," said Ms. Tornqvist. "Our group wants only the voluntary deportation to continue, and aid to Afghanistan should not be linked to the deportation of refugees."

As a result of this change in Swedish immigration law, about 3,000 children and adolescents have fled Sweden and are living in Paris, France, hoping to become citizens. This is quite disappointing for children who came to Sweden at the age of 13 and wandered in another country after five years seeking citizenship. The young Farzad has decided to stay in Sweden and live in secret with the help of a Swedish family. But Akbar has another decision.

Akbar, 19, is another young man who arrived in Sweden in 2015 and fled to Belgium for fear of being deported after three negative immigration hearings. "The court told us that your president was saying that Afghanistan was safe and that you should return," Akbar told Rooz, adding that the court had not given convincing reasons for rejecting his request.

Akbar says that if he did not escape, the Swedish government would have transferred him to a forward prison. According to Akbar, migrants who do not return voluntarily are held in this place until they feel tired and have to sign a return request.

Akbar studied in Sweden until the second grade of university and learned the Swedish language, but now he has to re-lay the foundation of his life in Belgium and go a long way.

Campaign "Sweden! "Stay together!"

Following the expulsion of a number of orphans from Sweden, a number of Swedish organizations and institutions, including a large number of lawyers, professors, child and immigrant advocates, writers, lawyers, publishers, singers and filmmakers, including Bishop Emiritz K. Hammer The head of the Swedish Church has launched a campaign on social media and social media entitled "Sweden! Sweden!" Stay together! "Do not return unaccompanied refugee children!" They have launched.

So far, more than 13,400 people and 160 institutions, including organizations, companies and schools, have joined the campaign. In addition, 18 other activists, including professors, lawyers, writers, and prominent politicians, serve as ambassadors for the campaign. The campaign ambassadors have thoroughly reviewed the challenges facing orphans in Sweden and have complained to the Swedish government at the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Genoa. The complaint alleges that the Swedish government committed blatant and proven human rights violations and violations of the fundamental freedoms of unaccompanied migrant children in the years following 2015.

The complaint also alleges that Sweden has fulfilled its obligations under the right to asylum, the rights of the child, the legal right to security and the rule of law, the right to life in which everyone has the right to liberty, and the personal security of thousands of homeless children who entered Sweden in 2015. Extremely endangered.

Campaigners say the Swedish government's ill-treatment of these vulnerable children and adolescents includes arbitrary reassessment of age, illegal detention and forced deportation to war-torn countries, separation of families, school classes and sports associations and associations across Sweden, and other unjust acts. It leaves irreparable damage to the whole of Swedish society.

In the European Union, no country can deport an orphan under the age of 18. But children's rights advocates say Sweden sets the age of its children at will and invalidates identity documents of the original country of the children.

"The Swedish government has resorted to a kind of ploy to deport children," said Marit Tornqvist, one of the main leaders of the campaign. For example, they decide the age of the children at will and do not accept the Afghan ID card. "I was taking care of a 15-year-old child, but the Swedish government set his age at 18 so he could be expelled."

"We want permanent residency permits for all unaccompanied refugee children of all nationalities who have lived in Sweden for more than a year," members of the campaign told the Swedish government and parliament.

Ms. Tornqvist also believes that many of these children, who lived in Sweden for about five years, have changed culturally, behaviorally and visually, and that the child is no longer an Afghan five years ago, but has adapted to Swedish culture and behavior. have given. According to him, the lives of girls in particular have changed a lot among children in particular, and they have adapted to a free life: "There is a big difference between Afghan and Swedish children. "Bringing these children back is like taking a Swedish child to Afghanistan."

The campaign's next step is to prepare a 30-page report on the situation of orphans and submit it to the Swedish Ministry of Justice. Ms. Tornqvist says many Swedes do not know the truth and that the government is hiding the truth from the people that Afghanistan is not safe.

Last month on September 15, more than 40 non-governmental organizations in OPPA issued a joint statement entitled "Afghanistan is not safe: a common solution for the future means two steps back" and called on European countries to expel Prevent Afghan refugees.

Meanwhile, for the second year in a row, Afghanistan is on the list of the most insecure countries in the world. The UNAMA report for the first half of 2020 recorded 3,458 civilian casualties. The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) estimates in its 2020 Overview that approximately one-fourth of Afghanistan's population (9.4 million out of a population of 38 million) is in need of humanitarian assistance. According to Long War magazine, 66 percent of Afghanistan is either under the control of the Taliban or under their control, but that figure was only 21 percent in January 2016. According to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), 388,103 people have either returned or been deported from Iran and Pakistan since January 2020.

The fate of the deportees in Afghanistan; Suicide, the war in Syria and the Taliban

Refugee rights groups in Afghanistan say closing European borders and deporting asylum seekers from Europe has had no effect on Afghan migration. These institutions say that asylum seekers deported from European countries to Afghanistan face serious challenges and are exposed to serious harm; From security challenges to addiction and the drug mafia, and from joining the Taliban to participating in the Syrian war in support of the Assad regime.

Abdul Ghafoor Rafi'i, head of the Afghan Refugee Advisory and Support Organization, which has been working in the field of counseling and support for deported asylum seekers from European countries for several years, says one of the most important challenges for deported asylum seekers to Afghanistan is security. And they lived in Pakistan and traveled to Europe from there: "They may not have heard gunshots and explosions in their lives. "When they enter the country, it is the first time they encounter war and explosions, and as a result, many of them do not stay in Afghanistan for more than a week or two and migrate again."

According to Mr. Rafiei, the lack of relatives is another challenge that many immigrants face, and many of their families left Afghanistan 20 or 30 years ago, and now they do not know anyone in Afghanistan: "We talked to some people. They do not know anyone except me in Afghanistan. "Those who have converted to Christianity or atheism are at greater risk."

Morteza Mousavi is a teenager who arrived in Sweden in 2014 and was forcibly deported from Sweden after a year and a half after signing the Afghanistan-Europe agreement. Morteza grew up in his uncle's house in Iran and currently has no relatives other than a half-sister living in Iran.

The story of Morteza, like tens and hundreds of other young people, is full of bitter stories. When he arrives at Kabul Airport, he will receive a fare of only 1,500 afghanis. What will Morteza do with this money? Room, clothes, food or car rental?

According to the Afghan government's agreement with the European Union, deported asylum seekers must receive financial assistance to be able to make a living in Afghanistan. But refugee advocacy groups say the process of assisting returnees from European countries is so controversial that only a small number of deported asylum seekers are able to do so, and many will not be able to do so after months, and some are frustrated. they do not.

The Afghan Refugee Advisory and Support Organization temporarily accommodates asylum seekers who have no place to live. Morteza uses this shelter to get help from the government and the European Union, but he encounters difficulties. "You go find a partner who has $ 4,000 or $ 5,000 in Dakash, go shopping and bring us the purchase, and we give the money not to you, but to the shopkeeper," said the distributor. "You bought from him."

"What he said was not possible for us at all," Morteza told RFE / RL. We had no place to eat and no food to eat. "Anyone who does not know us will not partner with us."

After some wandering, Morteza returns to Iran through smuggling, but is deported again. Because he has no choice but to leave, he decides to travel again. While crossing the Nimroz border, he noticed Iranian border soldiers and fired at them. A bullet splits Morteza's leg and causes him to sleep on a hospital bed in Tehran for several months.

The Iranian government sentences Morteza to seven months in prison and fines him 14 million tomans for crossing the border illegally. He was released from the hospital just a few days ago and is being held overnight at his half-sister's house. He was injured at the border of his abnormal kidney and had to be "dialyzed" every few days. Although the fine and some of its expenses are paid by asylum-seeking institutions, it remains to be seen how the disabled will pay the high cost of dialysis and medical expenses. Problems that all started with the decision of the Swedish Immigration Court. Now, instead of focusing on lessons and a quiet life, he should think about the cost of treatment and hospital beds in Tehran.

The head of the Afghan Refugee Advisory and Support Organization says that there is no monitoring of migrants returning from Europe and that the Afghan government does not provide them with "the slightest help" except to provide a list: "My personal experience is that most of them [ Refugees deported from Europe] leave Afghanistan again. "Most of the people I saw are now either in Iran, or in Turkey, or in Greece."

Asylum seekers say the government has no regard for deported asylum seekers from Europe, even though it receives financial assistance in exchange for deporting them. Rafi'i says: "When I say do not accept the red border, they say why not accept it? "The aid will be cut off."

Mr. Rafiqi says that this group of asylum seekers is very vulnerable in every way; From being caught in the trap of drugs to joining the Taliban and joining the war in Syria in support of Bashar al-Assad's regime: "Because there is no better option than this."

"The deportation of refugees from Europe and the closure of European borders has had no effect on Afghan migration," said Abdul Ghafoor Rafiei, who specializes in immigration. No one wins. "European countries spend millions of dollars to deport migrants, and migrants are forced to re-migrate and spend millions of dollars."

Many Afghans are currently fleeing the country due to insecurity, armed robberies in cities and highways, the ambiguous fate of peace and a thousand other reasons.

The "Common Solution for the Future" agreement expires on the first of this month (October 6), but the two sides have extended it until the end of this year. To extend this agreement, Afghanistan must prove that the conditions are right for the return of asylum seekers, and on the other hand, European governments must convince their own people that they have secured their presence in Afghanistan for several years.

Mr. Rafiei says that in this section, "a series of lies is going on. The Afghan side is telling them that Afghanistan is safe and the governments are telling their people that it is safe and some European countries and people are not aware of the current situation. "Only asylum seekers are harmed here."

Response of the Ministry of Immigration; The agreement is renewed

Officials at the Ministry of Refugees and Repatriations say the "Common Solution for the Future" agreement between Afghanistan and EU member states, signed on October 6, 2016, is being extended.

Reza Baher, the ministry's deputy spokesman, told RFE / RL that the agreement prevents the forced return of Afghan refugees from Europe and provides more grounds for their acceptance in the host countries: "The Afghan government has a serious commitment and decision to extend this agreement. "And the technical teams are working on how to extend it."

According to the Deputy Spokesperson of the Ministry of Refugees and Repatriations, only asylum seekers will be deported to Afghanistan under this Memorandum of Understanding, whose asylum application will be rejected by the European Migration Board and the three European courts. She says underage homeless children, single women, female-headed households, the elderly and the seriously ill are among the most vulnerable groups and are not forcibly expelled under any circumstances.

Mr Baher says only those who return voluntarily from Europe receive financial aid and incentives ranging from 5,000 to 7,000 euros.

According to the Ministry of Refugees and Repatriations, in the first three months of 2020 alone, 249 Afghan refugees returned from European countries, a process that has been halted by the outbreak of the Corona virus and is set to resume.

The deputy spokesman for the ministry said that the reason for the long process of cash aid to returned asylum seekers was that European countries and aid agencies should make sure that asylum seekers were reinstated in Afghanistan and that they would not be allowed to migrate again with the same cash assistance.

The results of a joint study by the Ministry of Refugees and Repatriations and the International Organization for Migration show that between 2012 and 2018, about three million Afghan refugees returned to the country and another two million Afghans emigrated from Afghanistan, most of them via Iran to Turkey and Europe. They have migrated illegally.

Mr Baher also said that the Ministry of Refugees and Repatriations had signed a memorandum of understanding with the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs on the return of asylum seekers, who had introduced 100,000 returned refugees to the Ministry of Labor for training and employment in the past five years.


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