Unite Against Deportation and Social Exclusion

Nationwide Activists Meeting in Refugee Cities in Germany
Break Deportation Prepar-Tainment Refugees Platform

The VOICE Refugee Forum – A Network of Refugee Community Initiatives in Germany

Break the Deportation DNA Chain: "Refugee Black Box – The irrepressible voice and power of the afflicted" - Beyond the Court rooms!

Human rights abuses and persecutions in Pakistan Muhammad Ali Jawaid: The violent role of religion, nepotism and state corruption

The violent role of religion, nepotism and state corruption: Human rights abuses and persecutions in Pakistan

Greetings and Solidarity from Refugee Political Community Germany to Refugee Protest March in Bavaria

English/French/Deutsch:
Sei realistisch, versuch das Unmögliche! Be realist, look for the impossible! Soyez réaliste, chercher l'impossible! Power to the people - Solidarity meeting from Hamburg by Refugee-Migrants Political community

French/English/Deutsch:
"Nous venons chez vous" - La communauté des réfugiés a besoin de vous!
„Wir kommen zu euch“ - Die Flüchtlings-Community braucht euch!
"We are are coming to you" - The refugee community needs you!
Review on Break Deportation Culture – Deportation is criminal and we fight to stop it!

Hamburg: "We are coming to you" – The refugee community needs you!

The Political MOVEMENT - Appeal to Refugee Communities for Solidarity Network in Germany and Europe
Please join us for a life decided by our quest for a free society, equality and human dignity.

No Refugee is Criminal - Deportation is Collective Crime and Corruption

In Solidarity with North African Deportees and Victims of Deportation from Germany.

Appeal for Refugee Community Network from: Konradsreuth – Bayern

Moneer and Nadja's Struggles and Solidirity with the refugee community in Thuringia: - Statements by Moneer Alkadri und Nadia Ghnim from Syria: Demand for official transfer to Jena and payment of social allowance by State of Thuringia and Flüchtlinge aus dem Camp-Streik untersuchen die Zustände in Suhl

Zu Moneers und Nadias Kämpfen und zur Solidarität mit der Flüchtlingscommunity in Thüringen:
- Statements von Moneer Al Kadri und Nadia Ghnim aus Syrien: Forderung nach offizieller Umverteilung nach Jena und nach Zahlung von Sozialleistungen durch den Staat Thüringen und zur Flüchtlinge aus dem Camp-Streik untersuchen die Zustände in Suhl

Miloud Lahmar Cherif von Beleidigungsvorwurf gegen rassistisch kontrollierende Bundespolizisten freigesprochen

Meine Stellungnahme zu den Anschuldigungen der Bundespolizei
- Miloud Lahmar Cherif, The VOICE Refugee Forum

My statement on the federal police's charges against me on racist control
- Miloud Lahmar Cherif

Petition gegen den Abschiebeterror an der Familie Arsič - Breitenworbis Flüchtlingslager in Thueringen

Erfurt Declaration of Radmila Anić concerning her menace in Serbia
Erfurt: Erklärung von Radmila Anić zu ihrer Bedrohung in Serbien

The VOICE Refugee Forum Germany:
The Refugee: Base on Our History 1994 to 2014
Call for a Coordinated Regional Community Assembly
Reward 2015: The refugee political resources in Germany

O-platz Berlin Bus Tour 2015

English German French
Refugee Manifestation For Freedom and Liberty in Lutherstadt Wittenberg, 16.04.2015
Stop Abuse! Legalize the so Called “tolerated refugees in Germany! Stop Destroying Refugees' Perspectives! With Guests Speakers from Schwäebish Gmünd

Civil Disobedience - Protest Tour Against Residenzplcht
Grassroots movement and resistance of refugee activists from Schwaebisch Gmuend against residenzpflicht imprisonment

Residenzpflicht bedeutet weiterhin Apartheid”
Weiter Protest gegen Erzwingungshaft für Flüchtlingsaktiviste
Ziviler Ungehorsam gegen Strafverfolgung bzgl Residenzpflicht
27.02.2015: Staement
02.03.2015: The VOICE Refugee Forum zur Flüchtlingsdemonstration gegen Residenzpflicht in Schwäbisch Gmünd
07.03.2015: Erklärung
English:
“Residenzpflicht still means Apartheid” - “Lager still means elimination”
25.02.2015: Staement
02.03.2015: The VOICE Refugee Forum on The Refugee Demonstration against Residenzpflicht in Schwaebisch Gmünd - Campaign for Freedom and liberty
07.03.2015: Declaration by Schwäbisch Gmünd Refugee Activists

Videos:
-Keeping Resistance Against Oppression!
-1/3
-2/3
-3/3

Refugee Tour
Solidarity Call for Civil Disobedience from Refugee Initiative Schwäbisch Gmünd
Wuppertal 23.03., Hamburg und Erfurt 24.03., Kiel 25.03., Bremen 26.03., Berlin 27.03.15,. Konstanz 01.04., Schwäbisch Gmd 06.04.15, Lutherstadt Wittenberg 16.04.2015

Breaking the isolation culture – We are isolated from the refugee communities!

Keep On - Close down Breitenworbis refugee isolation camp in Thüringen


Here is the .Radio report and Interview of Mbolo Yufanyi on the 20yrs. The VOICE Refugee Forum

Deportation is the Last Ring of Slavery Chain - Break the Culture of Deportaion, Isolation, Elimination.
Refugee Political Worshops and Media: 20years of Refugee Resistance in Anniversary of 20years.The VOICE Refugee Forum in Germany

20yrs.The VOICE Refugee Forum:
Faltblatt - Flyers in English / Deutsch / French / Arabic
The Call for Donation:
Everyone 20€ --- Dein Geburtstagsgeschenk für 20 Jahre The VOICE Refugee Forum


Review and invitation: Preparatory meetings on of The VOICE Refugee 20yrs. Anniversary in Jena

Deutsch:
Rückblick und Einladung: Die Vorbereitungstreffen zum 20. Jahrestag von The VOICE Refugee Forum in Jena
20. Jubiläum von The VOICE Refugee Forum - 20 Jahre Widerstand von Flüchtlingen in Deutschland

Brutal Police Murder in Germany
Oury Jalloh -Das War Mord / He Was Murdered in Police Cell 5 Dessau:
Innenansichten vor BGH Urteil - Statement Moctar Bah

Revisionsentscheidung des BGH im Fall Oury Jalloh vom 17.08.2014:
Conakry (Guinea): Visum für Bruder des toten Oury Jallohs trotz Einladung durch den BGH verweigert
:

Text in Deutsch:
Pressemitteilung GBA zum Todesfall Oury Jalloh - Gegenvorstellung von Thomas Ndindah gegen den OStA beim BGH Dr. Matthias Krauß
Im Todesfall Oury Jalloh: Thomas Ndindah vs GBA am BGH - Bezug: Ihr Antwortschreiben vom 11. Februar 2014 – AZ 2 APR 308/13-5

Spread the Solidarity - United we speak out for freedom of movement
The VOICE Refugee Forum on Archives of our 10years Anniversary in October, 2004 in Berlin:
As we approach the 20th Anniversary of Refugee Resistance this year in October, we will be spreading the documented texts and impressions from our Archives on Residenzpflicht campaign and the struggles to speak out for freedom of movement

Deportation is Torture and Murder - Stop Police Brutality against Refugees and Activists: - PM The VOICE Refugee Forum - First anniversary of our protest inside and outside of the Nigerian Embassy in 2012

STOP COLONIAL INJUSTICE – STOP DESTROYING OUR COUNTRIES
STOP KILLING REFUGEES – ABOLISH FRONTEX:

FOR THE RIGHTS OF REFUGEES AND MIGRANTS IN GERMANY AND EUROPE

We stand together to reclaim the power of human dignity and solidarity against the state repression of refugees in Germany

Refugee Protest Actions - United Against Colonial Injustice

Mass murder in Lampedusa: Shame on EU! Refugee Protest in Rome, 10.October, 2013

The VOICE Refugee Forum - Guideline to Refugee Protest Strike in Eisenberg Reception Camp

Roma Initiative Thüringen: Report of Action Days July 25th – 27th in Jena and Eisenberg

Panel Roma ( Refugee Tribunal )

Streik der Flüchtlinge in der Thüringer Landesaufnahmestelle in Eisenberg für u.a. Flüchtlinge vom 30.07.2013.
VideoDoc: Erste Streik der Flüchtlinge in der LAST Eisenberg

25 - 27. 07 in Jena: ROMENGO DROM – The WAY OF ROMA PEOPLE
Demonstration in Jena - Stop the Deportation of Roma

Bad Mergentheim and Külsheim Refugees Protest in Stuttgart


Liberation Bus Tour in Bad Mergentheim - Refugee Strike in Stuttgart The VOICE Refugee Forum Network Video Channel

The Lager Watch Group on Eisenhüttenstadt - Stop Deportation Factory!

BREAK ISOLATION!
pdf: ABOLISH ALL LAGERS! - STOP DEPORTATION! Refugees of Eisenhüttenstadt!

LIBERATION BUS TOUR – FINALER AKTIONSTAG IN STUTTGART

08.6. Demo for Lampedusa in HH. District Office Hamburg-Mitte prevents the construction of tents with the help of police force

Bundesweite Kampagne und Netzwerk Bericht über Aktivitäten und Unterstützungsaufruf

Refugees gestoppt auf dem Weg zu Blockupy / Refugees stopped on their way to Blockupy.

Everywhere in these isolation-camps people lack their basic human rights - Break Isolation Strike Tour in Niedersachsen

"Lampedusa in Hamburg":
Bezirksamt Hamburg Mitte verhindert mit Polizeikräften Zeltaufbau für obdachlose Flüchtlinge

Video Refugee Testimony: More than 20 years in Isolation Camp Brandenburg - Germany

Miloud L. Cherif - Video Collection on Campaign for Civil disobedience against "Residenzpflicht" Refugee Movement Restriction
English: Take Urgent Action! FAX- Campaign against Residenzpflicht and political persecution of Miloud L. Cherif
Deutsch: Fax-Kampagne gegen Residenzpflicht und die politische Verfolgung von Miloud L. Cherif

Aktion am Hauptbahnhof Erfurt; 22.5. um 15 Uhr Residenzpflicht abschaffen – Rassistische Polizeikontrollen stoppen! Freiheit für Miloud L Cherif und alle anderen!

Video Collection of Refugee Testimony and Appeals from Liberation Bus

Break Isolation - Refugee Strike in Germany
26.April till 08.June 2013
New Videos and Reports on Refugee Refugee Liberation Bus Tour in Baden Württemberg and Schwaben Bayern 26th of April till 8th of June in Stuttgart.

Niedersachsen Refugee Liberation Bus Tour (16 – 22 of May 2013) Break Isolation Refugee Strike

Aufruf zur öffentlichen Prozessbeobachtung im Asylverfahren von Salomon Wantchoucou

2nd Declaration and Call for serious conversations "Lampedusa in Hamburg"
„Lampedusa in Berlin, Hamburg and Bielefeld”

The Criminality of the European Authorities - Interview with Affo Tchassei
„Wir sind hier und gehen nicht zurück“
Protest im UNCHR Berlin
„We are here and we don’t go back!” - “Nous somme ici et nous ne retournerons pas!”

Break Isolation Strike in Refugee Lagers - camps

PRENZLAU: Protest against racist attacks of Refugees

Refugee Liberation Bus Tour in Baden Württemberg and Schwaben Bayern
Schließt euch uns an und unterstützt die Refugee Liberation Bus Tour in Baden-Württemberg und Bayern!

Join us to support the Refugee Liberation Bus Tour in Baden-Württemberg and Bayern

Update News:
Polizei schikaniert die Refugees Liberation Bus Tour: Offene Protestnote an die Grün-Rote Landesregierung von Baden-Württemberg

Demonstration - Samstag, 18. Mai 2013, 16 Uhr, Willy Brandt-Platz:
für ein Ende rassistischer Polizeigewalt und gegen institutionellen Rassismus
In Erinnerung an Christy Schwundeck – Getötet durch die Polizei in Frankfurt/Main

OUR RIGHTS TO EXIST AS FREE PEOPLE HAVE BEEN CRIMINALIZED BEFORE OUR NAMES ARE KNOWN: WE WILL FIGHT BACK UNTIL WHEN WE TAKE BACK THE POWER OF SOLIDARITY TO BREAK OPEN THE PRISON GATES FOR THE VICTIMS OF RACIST PERSECUTION IN GERMANY.

Action in Thüringen

On the Move! “Break Isolation Strike”
Refugee liberation strike action in Heidenheim Baden Württemberg 29th April 2013
Refugee Demonstration and liberation Bus Tour 2013 Refugees Liberation Bus Tour Video reports by Crosspoint

"Enough is enough" - refugees in Wolfsburg raise their voice
Bericht vom Demonstration am 27.04.2013 in Wolfsburg Break Isolation Solidarity Act - “Genug ist genug”

Polizei kriminalisiert Treffen in Thüringer Flüchtlingsheimen und belagert das Grünowski

BREAK ISOLATION and Solidarity Act in Thueringen: Jena, Greiz, Gerstungen, Waltershausen und Erfurt

Unterstützt die Faxkampagne - Offener Brief der Frauen aus dem Isolationslager Breitenworbis

Thousands of balloons - World Wide Roma Day

Am 8. April war der internationale Tag der Roma, um für die Rechte der Roma zu kämpfen und auf die Situation der Roma aufmerksam zu machen! - Gegen die Ausgrenzung und Isolation von Flüchtlingen in Lagern - Solidarität mit der "Break Isolation" Bewegung!

Pressemitteilung von Miloud Lahmar Cherif zur Situation seiner Familie in Deutschland

Break Isolation Conference and Solidarity Act 2013
*April 2013 in 7 Regionen Deutschlands – Göttingen 08-09.04., Essen - NRW 09.04., Berlin and Prenzlau 08-13.04., Frankfurt 10-11.04. (Kundgebung im Containerlager Oberursel 11.04.), Hamburg 13.04., Bielefeld 16.04., Trier 20.40 Jena / Thueringen , 22-26.04.

English:
We are at a crucial turning point to make refugee isolation lager HISTORY in Germany.

Break Isolation Conference and Solidarity Act 2013 - Input by The VOICE Refugee Forum

Deutsch:
Break Isolation Conference und Solidarity Act 2013 - Input von The VOICE Refugee Forum

Thousands of balloons - 8. April 2013 for World Wide Roma Movement
Gegen die Ausgrenzung und Isolation von Flüchtlingen in Lagern - Solidarität mit der "Break Isolation" Bewegung!

Refugee Workshop in Berlin Protestcamp

Choucha Camp Refugee Protest in Tunisia - Sit-in migrants de Choucha Tunis - Break the isolation! Solidarity with Fighting Refugees Camp in Choucha / Tunisia

Interviews in English and French:

Break Isolation of Refugees - Karawane Festival Speech by Osaren in Jena: Chant down the babylon Germany

We are protesting to close down all Refugee Isolation Lagers in Thueringen:
Refugee lager Camp Protest
Join the ongoing Campaign to Close down:
Isolationslager Breitenworbis
Greiz
Gerstungen isolation
Successfully Closed down refugee lagers in recent years
2012 Isolationslager Zella Mehlis
2011 Ghetto Sömmerda/Gangloffsömmern
2010 Isolationslager Katzhütte!
2009 Isolationslager Gehlberg
2009 Ghetto: Flüchtlingsunterkunft in Apolda - Stobraer straße in Thüringen
2007 Flüchtlingsheims Freienbessingen

Sachsen-Anhalt
Campaign to Close down:
Isolationslager Bitterfeld
Flüchtlingsisolationsheim Marke
Vockerode
Successfully Closed down refugee lager in Sachsen-Anhalt
2012 Isolationslager Möhlau

2011 Ein Überblick: Isolation der Flüchtlingslager in der Nachbarschaft zu brechen - Die Agenda von The VOICE Refugee Forum
An Overview of „The VOICE“ Agenda – Break the Refugee Isolation Camps in the Neighbourhoods
2003 Stop all deportations! Close all detention and deportation centers for refugees and migrants!

Asylbewerber Asylbewerber
Abschiebung Abschiebung
Residenzpflicht Residenzpflicht
Frontex Frontex
Refugee Embassy Refugee Embassy
Colonial Injustice Colonial Injustice
Police Brutality Police Brutality
Isolationslager Isolationslager
BAMF - Bundesamt für Migration und Flüchtlinge BAMF - Bundesamt für Migration und Flüchtlinge

* * * * * * * *

Dossier zu den Morden an Sakine, Fidan und Leyla Morde an den kurdischen Frauenrechtsaktivistinnen Sakine Cansız, Fidan Doğan und Leyla Şaylemez, die sich am 9. Januar 2013 im Zentrum von Paris ereigneten

Video: Dessau 7.01.2013 - Oury Jalloh Demonstration

Verbrannt in Polizeizelle Nummer fünf Busse nach Dessau (7.1.) zur Erinnerungsdemo für Oury Jalloh

: Abschiebung und Pressekonferenz - Refugee Camp Vienna
Refugee Protest Camps:
Vienna Austria
Berlin Germany

Break Isolation Berlin – Statement of the Refugee Protest Camp at Oranienplatz Berlin
Enough is enough. It's time for resistance!

New Videos Refugee Protest camps: Solidarity from Vienna and Berlin
Endorse the International Statement of Solidaritya from Refugee Protest in Vienn
Wien Press: Votiv-Lager war angemeldet - War Räumung des Protest-Camps illegal? Flüchtlingscamp vor der Votivkirche

Video: Police Vandalism in Wien - Refugee Protest Camp evicted! Polizeiliche Räumung des Refugee Protest Camp in Wien
Video:Refugees on Hunger Strike / Refugees im Hungerstreik

Reboot FM about the : Refugee Tribunal in Berlin (June 13-16.2013)

PM The VOICE Refugee Forum on Oury Jalloh: Magdeburger Strafgerichtskammer verhindert Aufklärung - (k)ein Ende einer Farce

Austine and the Residenzpflicht

"October 12. 2012. On the way from Schwäbisch Gmund (Baden Württenberg) to Berlin, to take part to the Refugee Protest March Demonstration of October 13, Austine, Charles, Chima, Egbo, Henry and Obinna are target of a police racial profiling control in Hof's Station.

Rex Osa’s Testimony by Affidavit for The INTERNATIONAL MIGRANTS TRIBUNAL IN MANILA Quezon City, Philippines
The VOICE- Protocol 11.11.12 in Berlin: O&A with Alassane Dicko and Rex Osa on Beyond the borders Conference in Berlin

CARAVAN for the Rights of Refugees and Migrants
Strengthening the unity of refugee struggles against colonial injustice in Germany

Stärkt die Einheit der Flüchtlingskämpfe gegen koloniales Unrecht in Deutschland - Abschlusserklärung des Break Isolation Camp

3Sat mediathek Report: Für mehr Menschenwürde
Flüchtlingsproteste in Deutschland: Die Proteste von Asylbewerbern in Deutschland nehmen zu, insbesondere seit sich ein Asylbewerber in Würzburg Anfang 2012 das Leben genommen hat und zwei iranische Flüchtlinge sich die Münder zugenäht hatten und in Hungerstreik getreten waren. Inzwischen hat sich in acht deutschen Städten eine Protestbewegung von Flüchtlingen...?
Break Isolation Protestmarsch und Protest der Flüchtlinge für die unverzügliche Schließung des Isolationslagers in Breitenworbis, Mühlhauser Straße 35 am 29.08.2012 auf 3Sat mediathek

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CAPITALISM HAS KILLED DEMOCRACY: AN INTERVIEW WITH CORNELIUS YUFANYI OF THE VOICE REFUGEE FORUM

I. HOW LONG?

How is it possible that we stand up for our principals in a society that seeks to destroy them? When the majority of the people are apathetic and prefer to look the other way so as not to feel that they themselves are somehow responsible? When breaking societal conventions means losing valuable solidarity? When racist and colonialist attitudes come not only from the mainstream of society and the government but also from the so-called progressive sectors? When practically no one else is willing to take the next step, leaving you not only alone and isolated but above all vulnerable?

Cornelius Yufanyi fled Cameroon and came to Germany in 1998 following two years in prison whereby even his family did not know where he was. The reason? Participating in student protests due to the government’s decision to raise tuition costs. After finally located Cornelius, his family was able to get enough money together to send him to Europe.

Cameroon is a country with not only a colonial past but a colonial present. Cameroon, although this fact is ignored by the western world, has been ruled over during the last 22 years by a dictator by the name of Paul Biya. Cameroon, as is the case of much of the rest of the world, is a rich country forced into poverty while the western governments extract the countries’ natural resources while simultaneously financing the repressive military. The western governments - primarily European - increase the foreign debt of Cameroon while imposing unjust economic policies at the same time they criminalize those who attempt to leave in search of a better life.

A rich land, a poor people. But the people aren’t poor, at least not when you measure the worth of a person by means other than money. And that’s where the problems begin. Who defines good and bad, rich and poor, right and wrong, moral and immoral, correct and incorrect, justice and injustice? Indeed, all issues worthy of discussion, but nevertheless difficult to achieve in the midst of such unjust colonial relations. Until the people of the western countries recognize and internalize the fact that it is precisely their terms, their conditions and their ideologies that have not only been forced upon the world, but which are also responsible for at least 500 years of unjust and genocidal colonial impositions, then it is questionable if a fair discussion is even possible at the moment.

Cameroon is Africa, but it is also Colombia, Iraq, Vietnam, the Philippines, Afghanistan and Chile. Cornelius didn’t realize this when he first came to Germany, although he recognized the roles played by France and England in their colonial relations with his country. It was here, in the heart of the “democratic” culture, where he learned that this injustice is not only carried out against blacks or Africans nor only by France and England. Here, in Germany, Cornelius realized that this genocide is being carried out by the western governments embedded with the rich of the Third World countries and is primarily directed against all peoples of color. Coming here and meeting so many displaced people from so many parts of the world was like looking into a mirror and seeing the same face as that of his own people: a mixture of sorrow, anger and dignity.

Now Cornelius must go to prison. Why? Simple really. He refuses to pay a fine hanged on him for breaking an Apartheid-like law and thus subject himself to his own submission as inferior to the Germans. In short, he refuses to give the German authorities what they really want: not only that he bow his head in recognition of their power (and thus their superiority), but that he also lets them know that they – as morally superior beings - deserve the authority granted to them by their racist laws. Slaves normally say yes master, in Germany the people in the concentration camps were trained to respond Jawohl.

The law that Cornelius has violated is called Residenzpflicht, also known as the Pass Law or Obligatory Residency Law. It stipulates that refugees are not allowed to leave a certain geographical region known as Landkreis (district or municipality) without prior permission from the authorities, which is almost never forthcoming. If one is caught outside his or her Landkreis they are temporarily detained, later to be escorted by the police (in handcuffs of course) back to their housing accommodations (often times abandoned East-German military barracks located in the middle of nowhere). Finally, and although many receive only a laughable amount of cash (instead receiving coupons which are only to be used in certain stores), they must pay a fine that is set so high as to “discourage” them from doing it again. In worst case scenarios the courts can even decide that the violation of this law is reason enough to deport someone.

Cornelius, like millions of other people in this world, is angry. He begins to hate and must fight to control it. He wants to destroy and must control himself. He sometimes wants to just forget everything but is reminded that he can’t. Sometimes he just wants to sit down and rest, but that he can also not do. Although lacking bars, since birth Cornelius has been locked up and caged in another prison, the prison of colonial relations that have never ceased to exist and that allow black, brown and yellow children to die daily by the thousands of diarrhea, malnutrition and a host of other diseases so that the people of the United States and Europe can live in heated homes, eat exotic fruit, travel to exotic places and live a life free of worry.

For hundreds of years now the people of the world of non-European ancestry have been told what to do and how to do it. They have watched their countries pillaged and their families destroyed. They have lost their livelihood and their dignity is shat upon. When they fight for justice they are intimidated, imprisoned and tortured in their countries. Here it is the same, only often times more psychological than psychical.

Following years of bureaucratic injustice and bureaucratic impunity, 26,000 asylum seekers are to be deported over the next three years from Holland to countries often times destroyed by European bombs and sanctions (Iraq, Afghanistan, Kosova, Congo, etc.). Since the United States began bombing Iraq more than 10,000 Iraqis have died after an estimated one million died due United Nations imposed sanctions. Poverty is growing alongside the strengthening of authoritarian governments worldwide. More and more people are having their only possibility of survival taken away from them in the name of the free market.

Something that markedly distinguishes the people of Europe or the United States with people of regions like Africa or Latin America is the following: in terms of injustice, the people of the western countries have no historical memory. With the argument “I cannot be held responsible for what happened in the past,” they try and distance themselves from the past injustices committed by their ancestors. Likewise, they try and morally distance themselves from the same crimes - which although disguised by names of modernity like democracy and progress are fundamentally the same as two hundred years ago – that are still being carried out in their name and for their benefit as perhaps unjust acts but that nevertheless are far outside their sphere of influence.

As the Twin Towers fell in New York, the western world immediately understood that the United States had the right to respond with the use of violence. And the people of Africa? And the Colombians? The Chileans? The Iraqis? The Afghans? Who has the right to employ violence? Who has a right to defend him or herself? Only the white people?

After the United States bombed the offices of the news agency Al-Jazeera in Baghdad, killing the reporter Tareq Ayyoub, Ayyoub’s wife wrote an open letter asking how she should now raise her daughter and what she should tell her about what happened to the child’s father. She herself responded to the question: “Allow me to answer… I will raise her never to forgive or forget. Never to forget her father and never to forgive those who killed him.”

They are told to wait. Should they be patient? For how long? Should they calm down? Should they also forget their historical memory? Should they forgive and forget? Should they just bow their heads and do as they’re told, say yes, master and Jawohl? Or should they defend themselves and their dignity? And you?

The following interview with Cornelius was carried out at the end of February, 2004. He expects to be sent to prison some time between April and May for refusing to pay the fine assigned to him by the German courts.

II. CAPITALISM HAS KILLED DEMOCRACY

When will we enjoy
the seeds of our land
and the sweetness of our sky?
When will the sun
find a place in our hearts?
Will a day finally come?
The day.
Just like for everyone else?
Everyone seeks peace.
We prefer to be in struggle
against the death that blinds us.
Without considerations
nor piety
for infinite theories.
Everyday.
Relentlessly.
(Muhammad Aziz al-Hababi)

For this liberty
so beautiful as life
we must give our all
be it necessary
even our shadows.
And it will never be enough.
(Fayad Jamis)

Q: What’s the first thing that comes to mind when I ask the following question: How does it feel to live in a free society such as Germany?

A: I think that Germany is not a free society. If it’s free then only for those who persecute others, because they have the rights and the power to do anything they want. So maybe it is free for them, but I would say that for me Germany is not a free country. I have experienced too many persecutions and intimidations here.

Q: Since coming to Germany as a refugee, how has your personal situation improved?

A: Physically I am o.k., but mentally I am close to being destroyed in Germany. My hope when I came here was that I could live a life as I had envisioned it. But coming here has so destroyed my life so that at one point I thought to myself, “O.k., I should turn the page and start all over again”, but then I realized I was just going deeper into the situation that almost every foreigner here in Germany faces. And then I asked myself “where could I possible go?” There are very little possibilities.

Also, there is my family situation. I think there is nothing to do but to bear the cross, by which I mean stay and fight for the survival of myself and for those around me who are also facing the same problem. I could also say that the development of my life has been negative as a result of being here in Germany. I have had too many negative experiences and they go through my mind everyday. It’s like a trauma. Everyday I walk on the street I am constantly reminded that I am a foreigner, that I am not accepted nor wanted in this society. But everyday I also gain the courage and the power to see how I can fight for myself and for others.

Q: Why do you think that refugees in Germany can be punished for the simple act of going from point A to point B?

A: My personal and political view is that there is too much discrimination in Germany and I don’t think refugees should be punished, because freedom of movement is one of the basic rights that anyone can think of - I would say a birth right. And freedom of movement has always existed; since the beginning of the world human beings have moved freely.

Since 1982 to 2004 – for 22 years – this racist law known as Residenzpflicht is still unknown to the people, there is basically silence, without anybody trying to do anything to abolish or stop this law. It’s just another one of the racist features that we have here in Germany. Discrimination always goes from one group of people to another, it’s not just a thing of today. I would also say that it is part of racist behavior in a society that has permitted the implementation of this law. I also see it as part of the Apartheid which we abolished in South Africa but which now also exists here; an attempt by the State or by its citizens to create a demarcation or segregation between the foreigners who live here and the Germans.

Secondly, the foreigners are also being discriminated in other ways. For example there are different categories of migrants. You have migrants who have been here a long time and may feel like citizens of this country; you have foreigners who are here studying and may feel that they are better than the others; and then you have people who are at the very bottom: the refugees and asylum seekers who come to this country in search of a better life, be it economical or political. But they are so discriminated against that they feel they are the worst of all categories. It’s part of a way to suppress and intimidate the people in such a way so that they cannot even fight for their rights.

Finally, although I don’t want to try and make a direct comparison to what happened in the past, I do think that this oppression tries to destroy every single individual that doesn’t identify him or herself with the rules that are in place in this country.

Q: Why don’t these laws exist for Germans or Europeans?

A: The Residenzpflicht [also called Pass Laws or literally Obligatory Residence Law] is a law that Germans or Europeans cannot break, while a refugee or migrant can be imprisoned or even deported for going against this law. It is a way to show that in Europe - and in particular in Germany - human beings are different, that some are “better” than others. And all those not wanted in Germany live under very acute conditions so that they will eventually “voluntarily” go back to where they came from or go to another country. I would also see Germany as an apex of the whole thing, because this German law has been exported to other places like Holland, where we have recently heard that 26,000 people are to be deported and certain areas placed under Residenzpflicht. Or in England, where there are places where refugees or particular people cannot go. I think all these things come from Germany. Time is running out that we stand up and fight against this abuse, and I think we must point our finger at Germany and say they are the most powerful economic country of Europe and politically, that basic human rights should be at the forefront of their policies.

Q: Because you refuse to participate in an act of self-injustice you are in danger of going to jail for a crime that only refugees can be punished for. If you are going to jail as an act of resistance, what actions do you think German supporters and anti-racists could and should carry out?

A: I started my personal campaign against Residenzpflict because I found it important that one is his or her own example. I began four years ago to say that I am no longer going to the Foreign Office to ask for permission to leave my district. Shortly thereafter I had an interview with a newspaper and the boss of the Foreign Office responsible for my case read it and on the basis of the interview they began to persecute me. I decided to challenge this in the German courts although I always knew the results would be negative, but because I have always been calling for civil disobedience - for resistance to this law – it didn’t really matter.

Going to prison is not going to be so difficult for me, because if I do not go to prison then I will suffer for the rest of my life with a bad conscience that I could not stand up for my beliefs nor for my dream that all refugees be free in this country. And going to prison is also to show the German supporters and all those well-wishers for the betterment of the situation of refugees and migrants in this country that they too could also do something. They could also stand for their beliefs. It isn’t only about participating in demonstrations or holding political meetings: it is to stand up for one’s convictions. And I am willing to do everything in order to fight against Residenzpflicht - as part of the special laws in Germany.

The action of going to prison and accepting the consequences should be seen as a way of fighting a system that has everything; it has the police, it has the army, and it has economic power, everything to demoralize and suppress us. But our convictions can never be killed. Our dream to live in a free society can never be extinguished, and that is what I stand for. I will do as much as possible to see that each person with whom I work understand that this is my opinion, and that this law must be abolished or fought against until the end. If the German supporters can learn from this, that we stand together and fight for our convictions, then I think it is going to be a positive step. As for myself, I think it will be o.k. to go to prison, because I will know that I fought it to the end, and that I will continue to fight it even if I have to go to prison a thousand times.

Q: Franz Fanon, in his book the „Wretched of the Earth“ wrote that Europeans will never understand the plight of the wretched, because they are the ones who will always have the shoes on their feet. What do you think?

A: Even if Europe doesn’t want to feel the pain of the poor and the displaced that they create they are going to be forced to do so. I think human development shows that the more you make a certain class of people rich and you leave the others to die, then the more that those who are suffering, those who are being oppressed, will one day stand up and say: “here we are!” And this is something Europe cannot avoid. Secondly, there are many people who have direct or indirect contacts to Europe. There are also many people who have been forced into poverty to make Europe rich, and there are many people who are going to make this connection and come to Europe. This will develop in such a way that those who come will protest even more here then they even do in their own countries. What this means is that whatever policy they take to become powerful, be it economically, financially or whatever, the very people that they destroy are going to come to Europe and protest. And I think if these very people unite, then they are going to demonstrate not only to the world but also to themselves the importance of people standing up for themselves and saying: “We have this problem and we have to solve it here because it originated here.”

Q: Recently the governments of Germany, France and England met to discuss the details of new military units intended to intervene in Africa. What are you thoughts on this?

A: The friends of the western governments may see this as a positive step, but I would see it as a strategy to create a new market in order for them to sell their arms, which they have stockpiled in their own countries. I think that the problems that they publicly say they are going to fight were created by them, and I think the moment that they take their hands off of Africa that Africa is going to solve its own problems. The corruption that exists in Africa today came from Europe. The military regimes in Africa are supported by the European and American governments, so where are you going to fight? Which problem are you going to resolve? Are you going to fight on the side of the oppressed or the oppressors? Who are you going to sell arms to? To the oppressors so they can continue to oppress?

Q: German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer explained that, in large part, the main objective of these interventions would be to stop refugees from making it to Europe.

A: I would already say Europe will probably be able to succeed in the first few years, but I think Africa is also learning. I have learned much by being here. I will not stay my whole life in Europe. What I have learned here I will bring back to Africa and try to see what I can do to make Africa a better place, not only for me but for everyone.

Secondly, I would also say that, as a result, protest is also going to come, but the corruption is stronger than the protest. For me it is important to denounce and reject all African governments that accept this type of policy. There are also other African governments who are totally against it. For example in Senegal, where France deported some Senegalese people back to Senegal. Well, the very next day the Senegalese government deported 20 Frenchmen back to France. Now, I am not for deportation - in no way! - but I think the response or the actions that come from Europe, if they could also be responded to in a political way to show that Africa is independent, then it is going to be good. Some African leaders understand that, some don’t, but I think it is our challenge for those of us who intend to build a continent like Africa to see that whatever action we take is directed toward the betterment of Africa and anybody who wants to live in Africa.

Q: Like millions of other people in this world, you view the world through the eyes of the oppressed. Describe the world we live in.

A: I would describe it in one word: capitalism. A rich man or woman would see capitalism as good, because he or she has the opportunity to gain from it and to exploit others; to increase his or her riches everyday. But from my point of view, capitalism has created practically all of the problems that we face in this world. I see the world as one that takes the little what people have and give it to those who have more, and the moment that you try and fight for your own existence you are totally extinguished, be it being killed, oppressed or put somewhere where you can no longer express yourself. I also think that the future is going to be catastrophic. The countries that have always been crying for democracy, the western countries, are now entering into a system of dictatorial regimes that even the marginalized in the “democratic” countries - when they stand up and fight for their own rights or who try to express themselves freely - are being totally oppressed.

Capitalism in the western world has killed democracy, and capitalism in the western world has killed human rights. In the presence of capitalism there is never going to be any respect for human rights. In the presence of capitalism I am being oppressed. In the presence of capitalism we have from about 85 to 95 percent of the citizens of this world living in poverty while just 5% have all the riches, and capitalism is responsible. I think the longer capitalism continues to dominate the more people are going to be oppressed.

Q: What do you have to say to those Germans who say that they are not responsible for what is happening, that they have nothing to do with this injustice?

A: I think the moment I say I am not responsible for what is happening around me, it means that I am totally closing my eyes or I am blind, but I think the people of the western world are not blind. I will just give one example: Africa is poor today because Europe is rich. Latin America is poor today because America is rich, and I think all those who benefit – I myself included although I consider myself part of the oppressed – have a responsibility and have to be held accountable for the poverty that exists in different regions of the world and that is why I stand up and say enough is enough for myself and for the ill doings that are going on in the world. I think it is the responsibility of every European to do the same. They can’t just say, “I am not responsible for it.” And I think every single person is responsible and every single person has to stand up and fight, and the person who doesn’t stand up is just part of the whole system which destroys those who have a positive way of thinking.

Q: What is the role that we have as individuals?

A: Our role as individuals is to be our brothers and sisters keepers. Our role is to see that we live to fight for ourselves and for others, to glorify and to respect the rights that each and every individual has. For me, is to know that my right ends where another persons right starts, and to know that I as a human being must not infringe on the rights of other human beings, and to see that I recognize that every human being is a part and parcel of this world.

Q: Anything else?

A: I have a right to live like any other person, and the moment that I feel my dignity taken away from me, then I also have the right to fight against it and I think that is why I live in Germany and I think that is why I have the challenge for myself to continue to fight against these racist laws, especially the racist Residenzpflicht law. Those who are said to be the citizens of this country - the Germans - in my point of view have failed this struggle and have failed the hopes that the foreigners placed in them. That is why I call on the refugees and migrants to see how we can unite and to identify ourselves as part of the society, because we live here and we have to play a role in this society.

My hope is that the people of all African countries that have suffered under colonialism and the oppression of European countries begin not only in their own countries to protest the way that they have been destroyed but that they also come here to protest as well. I also hope that one day I will walk the streets of Europe and Germany and finally regard all people equally. And if I no longer see people differently, then I have started in a way to take one step toward recognizing that there is only one human race and not two. It is also important for me to be able to recognize that everywhere I go I have rights as a human being and that I can express myself in such a way that I have the same dignity that every single human being has a right to have.

They have always tried to push us apart. We must learn that our survival doesn’t depend on the Europeans or any other world power. Our survival depends on our convictions and I think if we remain weak and are not capable of controlling ourselves then I think we have already given up and lost the fight.

For futher information regarding Cornelius Yufanyi and the struggle of refugees and migrants in Germany, contact:

The Voice Refugee Forum Goettingen
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