Afghan asylum seekers in Belgium are living in an ambiguity …

By: Abdul Ghafoor

on 8th September 2013 About 400 Afghan Asylum seekers occupied a former refugee center to protest the harsh asylum procedures of Maggie De Block. Most have worked and lived for many years in Belgium. Now their asylum is refused they are being sent back.

These Afghans are desperate. They have tried to build up a new live, working with an ‘orange card’ and doing language courses. Most of them speak fluently Dutch and/or French (the official languages in Belgium) and many have children that went to school here all their life. They want to say to Minister of Asylum Maggie de Block, and to the rest of Europe, that it just isn’t safe in Afghanistan, and that families with children should have the right to stay and live here.

However their struggle continues as they got support of Belgium activists and activist around the world. on  September 25th  2013 they asked to meet the Belgian prime minister and the police reacted violently (claiming demonstrators had attacked them). Women and children were there when the police used teargas and water canon.

After the violent attack by Belgian police many Afghan Asylum seekers were arrested. On 30th September Afghan refugee movement in Brussels occupied the Church of Sainte-Croix. The police were also present at the church: they didn’t let anyone in, people could only come out. Afghan refugees were inside the church including children and women

On 29th September they had published an open letter to Belgian prime minister Elio Di Rupo, asking to meet him on Friday 4th October 2014

This morning 2nd October 2013 they had a demonstration in front of  the headquarters of the Socialist Party to protest for their rights.

activist around the world are also gathering in Brussels to join hands with Afghan Asylum seekers on a call by No Borders. No borders international on a call in social media has requested all the member of No Borders to arrive in Brussels on 4th October at 12:15 PM.

Activists in Belgium are also very active in the ground and social media. They have launched a petition to get as many signatures as possible and send it to the concerned authorities in Belgium to give the basic human rights and protection to these Afghan Asylum seekers and stop their deportation to Afghanistan.

You too put a hand and sign the petition, how ever the petition is French and Dutch, but you will see the picture guide so that it is easier for those who don’t understand either of these languages.

Open the link and then click on the button at the left side of the picture

Then you will open the petition window Which is consist of your Second name, First name, Email, Place, country, website, comment and then signature. You will receive an email to confirm your signature’, sometimes the email is considered as spam. You have to check your spam box in case you don’t receive it in your inbox .

About Abdul Ghafoor

Abdul Ghafoor is a refugee rights activist and blogger stationed in Kabul, Afghanistan.
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