23 September 2020
The Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM) has published a booklet of stories of people in Lagos and Benin City, Nigeria, and Bamako, Mali, who have been deported from Europe.
Read the booklet here: Removed: Stories of hardship and resilience in facing deportation and its aftermath (link to pdf):
“By providing short glimpses into the lives and stories of individuals who have been deported from Europe to Nigeria and Mali, this project aims to shed light on the impact of EU return policies on people’s lives and dreams.”
The interviews were conducted by researcher Jill Alpes, who will be speaking about the risks faced after deporation at the Statewatch TNI webinar 'Deportation Union: revamped return policies and reckless forced removals' on Monday 28 September.
The individuals’ stories are all different, with experiences of deportation from four EU member states and the UK to Niger, Nigeria and Mali. Some of the interviewees had emigrated from their countries of origin due to violence or lack of employment, while others had grown up in Europe.
However, the stories share common themes in their accounts of homelessness, stigmatisation and exclusion upon return, and how these issues are exacerbated by problems created by deportation procedures in Europe, such as issues with documentation and detention.
Of the 12 people interviewed, seven had nowhere to go once they landed, and five explicitly report that they never saw the “emergency travel documents” they were issued to legitimise their removal. Shame over having been deported, culture shock, stigmatisation and challenges to reintegration are also reported.
The booklet ends with a series of recommendations concerning EU policies.
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