By: Abdul Ghafoor
Thousands of Afghan refugees marched on different cities across Europe to share their concerns about the recent deal between Afghanistan and EU, and to oppose forced deportation to Afghanistan. Demonstrations were called for 22nd October, in different cities of Germany and Sweden, the two major countries with highest number of Afghans that sought asylum in 2015.
Demonstrations were held in Stockholm, Gothenburg, Malmo and other smaller cities of Sweden, where hundreds of Afghan refugees gathered to oppose deportation to Afghanistan. Thousands more gathered in different part of Germany on the same day to protest against the deal and oppose forced expulsion to Afghanistan. Hamburg, Dusserdolf and many other smaller cities.
According to figures released by European Asylum Support Office “– 190 013 Afghans applied for international protection in EU+ countries in 2015″. According to the same data provided by EASO 70% of the refugees applied for asylum in Hungary, Sweden, Germany and Austria.
EU and Afghanistan signed a deal last month that will allow EU to deport thousands of Afghan refugees back to Afghanistan. The demonstrators fear their lives will be in danger if they are returned under the deal. They claim, Afghanistan is already in chaos with at least 1.5 million IDPs and thousands of more being deported from neighboring countries on daily basis. The demonstrators were holding placards and chanting ” Stop Deportation to Afghanistan” and ” Afghanistan IS Not Safe”.
With the outreach of Taliban in most of the provinces of Afghanistan and the existence and expansion of ISIS as a fresh threat, security is the first concern for most of those who fear deportations under the deal, also known as ” Joint Way Forward”. Recent attacks on minority Hazaras and the kidnappings on the highways connecting to central Afghanistan is also what not many people and media have talked about, but the Afghan refugees in EU are well aware of those threats if they are returned.
Pictures from demonstration in Germany
Pictures from demonstration in Sweden