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Statements in support of the Kurdish refugees who landed in Corsica

Fourteen Corsican organisations issued a joint statement in support of the Kurds from Syria who landed in Bonifacio on 22 January, and announcing a demonstration on 26 January 2010 to protest against the Prefect's handling of the case that appears to be aimed art rejecting them rather than granting them asylum. French and international human rights associations and networks (AEDH -European Association for the Defense of Human Rights-, FIDH -International Federation for Human Rights-, LDH -Ligue des Droits de l'Homme- and EMHRN -Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Network-) are following the case, and issued their own joint press release while asking the question, "asylum or charter flights?". They noted that the Prefect failed to attend a scheduled meeting with the Corsican branch of LDH-France and proceeded to transfer them from the gym where they were received in Bonifacio to detention centres in Lyon, Marseille, Nîmes and Toulouse, resulting in a hunger strike. Both statements call for their right to lodge asylum applications being upheld, that the measure is unlawful because they should have been placed in waiting areas until their requests were lodged and that deporting them would be a violation of their human rights. The second press release also mentions the recent case of Afghans sent back to Kabul on a charter flight.

Ajaccio, 25 January 2010
Joint statement
Meeting in support of the Kurdish refugees


With the landing of 124 Kurdish refugees from Syria on a beach in Bonifacio, Corsica will have experienced, for the first time, a reality that, alas, has imposed itself over several years in the Mediterranean. To tackle this event, two attitudes have prevailed:

- on the one hand, a reaction of solidarity by Corsicans: the Bonifacio mayor's office immediately organised the refugees' reception, supported in its action by associations and citizens from Bonifacio and Porto Vecchio; that by other citizens who spontaneously and permanently assembled outside the prefecture's offices, and that by associations that demanded that the right to asylum be respected.
- on the other hand, the action of the prefect [government official in charge of security] of Corsica who, under pressure from the ministry for immigration and national identity, did not pause until a procedure to return them to the border was enacted, contravening the rule of law.

This summary procedure implemented by the State is an attack on our humanity. It has now been questioned by the ordinary justice system, that has ruled that the refugees be released.

This first victory, which is a result of the first mobilisations in Corsica and later on the mainland, demands further mobilisations
to enable the right of asylum to succeed.

Because removing Kurdish refugees from Corsica in illegal conditions does not mean that Corsicans are no longer concerned about their fate.

Because we do not forget that these women, men and children have fled from one of the worst fates possible and one of the worst regimes that exist.

The signatory organisations call for a gathering in front of the prefecture of Corsica in Ajaccio at 18:00 on Tuesday 26 January 2009, to make the Kurdish refugees from Syria's asylum claim succeed.

Signatories:
CFDT Corsica - CGT Corse-du-Sud - Collectif antiraciste Ava Basta - Inseme per Aiacciu - Le Bâtonnier de l'Ordre des avocats du Barreau d'Ajaccio - FSU - I Verdi corsi - Ligue des droits de l'Homme - PC Corse-du-Sud - PNC - Union des Marocains de Corse-du-Sud - UNSA - Union régionale de Corse du PS.
[Unofficial translation by Statewatch]

Sources: Sources


- Communique Commun: Rassemblement de soutien aux réfugiés kurdesxx (pdf)
- Kurdish refugees in Corsica: asylum or charter flights? (pdf)
- Réfugiés kurdes en Corse: asile ou charter? (pdf)


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