[EN] A draft bill has been presented to the German Home Secretary, and might facilitate the stay in Germany for foreigners without residence permit (150 000 persons today), if they meet some requirements, like be able to fulfil their needs or to speak German. Yet, the bill brings new difficulties for migrants who won’t « cooperate », for instance by hiding their identity to avoid being deported to their country. In that case, German authorities reserve the right to access their personal data, or even to deport them and forbid them to turn back. In Germany, the respect of asylum for some persons is balanced by severe restrictions for others.
Refugees and migrants are (always) the losers of the Grand Coalition!
On September 19th 2014, a new law, which re-defined Serbia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Macedonia as ‘safe countries of origin’, passed the Parliament. But this was only the starting point: The Grand Coalition is trying to enforce a number of repressive measures regarding asylum and migration policies. This is a reaction to the victorious struggles of the past year, for example against deportation and imprisonment prior to deportation or for Freedom of Movement. A great number of victories, hard earned over many years, could potentially be rendered void at once. We will not tolerate this! Let’s organize a loud and united protest and stop the legislative plans of the government!
Consequences of the planned laws in practice
Drastic expansion of ‘Abschiebehaft’ (imprisonment prior to deportation)
The current draft of the ministry of interior expands the possibilities for the imprisonment of refugees significantly: the definition of ”flight risk’ is being expanded by numerous vague criteria which apply to almost every single refugee in Europe and at the same time state protection against ‘Abschiebehaft’ is reduced. This would enable an unprecedented criminalization of flight! ‘Hungarian conditions’, i. e. the regular imprisoning of asylum seekers during their proceedings, will be established by law.
Tightening of banishment and prohibition of entry and stay
Every person whose application for asylum has been rejected as ‘obviously unsubstantiated’ or or who has not left the country by a set departure date, would be banned from re-entering Germany in the future. Applicants from states which are visa-free in the Schengen Area would thus lose their freedom to travel in Europe.
In the future, applications for asylum rejected as ‘obviously unsubstantiated’ and subsequent / second applications (after the first application has failed in another EU state) will automatically lead to the legal assumption that Germany was entered with the intent to gain access to public benefits. This ‘legal assumption’ will in turn lead to an exclusion from any support or benefits and to a ban from work permission.
No Abolishment of the AsylBLG
Against all our hopes caused by the ruling of the Federal Constitutional Court that the AsylbLG might be deleted without substitution, this racist special law will be maintained and used repressively: People who allegedly entered Germany with the ‘intent to gain access to public benefits’ or who allegedly don’t cooperate with their own deportation , will be excluded from any claims to benefits.
Limitation of the freedom of movement within the EU
The law is designed to limit legal stay for the purpose of seeking work, and to impose bans to re-enter the country. Furthermore, the proposition entails increased monitoring and control measures.
No Horse-Trading with the rights of humans
All of these tightenings are accompanied by improvements for individual groups of people. There is a new right to permanent residence (stichtagsunabhängiges Bleiberecht) independent of any cutoff date. This proposition mainly implements the plan (in the making since 2005) to normalize the status ‘Geduldete’ (people living in a status of suspended deportation). People who have been living in Germany with a ‘Duldung’ for many years will be able, under certain conditions, to gain a right to permanent, regular residence, even after their application for asylum was denied. This new right to permanent residence simultaneously excludes a number of people from the outset, e. g. by way of the aforementioned bans on entering and staying in Germany.
In the context of all draft bills taken together, introducing a permanent right to residence for people living in a state of suspended deportation for many years is being exchanged against severe restrictions for newly arriving refugees. Another example of how the improvements for one group is being compensated for with drastic tightenings for the other are the planned for the improvements for refugees, who are accepted in the context of contingent. These improvements are accompanied by significant deteriorations for those, who organize their journey on their own and against the Dublin-Regime.
It’s horse trade dealing in human rights, cynical to the core. There is no offer generous enough to justify the proposed criminalization and repression of future refugees!
The time to act is now!
While the Federal Assembly has already passed the law on ‘safe countries of origin’, all the other laws are still in the beginning of the legislative process. Mostly, there is a draft bill published by the ministry of internal affairs which contains the most repressive and fatal propositions, called the ‘Gesetz zur Neubestimmung des Bleiberechts und der Aufenthaltsbeendigung’ (law to redefine the right to residence and to terminate stay). At the moment, the different ministries are still debating the draft, and the final government bill is expected to be published at the end of November. All propositions need the consent of the Federal Assembly.
There is still a chance to prevent these proposition from passing as laws, as long as we take action NOW! Join the week of action all over Germany in December! Organize loud and creative actions in your city!
Become active now!
We are aware that this initiative comes pretty late, and we don’t have the masterplan – but we can and must not simply accept these massive legislative tightenings! Time is running, since some dates concerning the legislative plans will take place in the next weeks (see www.migrationsgesetze.info).
We already got some feedback to our first announcement from various cities, and now we want to get bigger and start action immidiately. Furthermore, we provided the website http://migrationsgesetze.info/ and are ready to get started now.
We have a mailinglist for the campaign, where we want to clear some things the next days. To get on the list, send a mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please contribute to the discussion on the list, talk about a contribution to the campaign and possible actions in your groups and get back to us on the list!
We have to become active now, if we don’t want to stand aside watching the mobility rights getting further slashed!
See this article online:
- [EN], Global Detention Project, The detention of asylum seekers in the Mediterranean region
- Ecuador [EN] Global Detention Project, Ecuador Detention Profile
- France [FR] Le Monde, Cazeneuve revives the match left wing – right wing concerning expulsions
- Cyprus [EN] KISA, Serious violations of detainees’ rights in the detention centre of Mennogeia
- Belgium [FR] Steenrock, Make music, not immigration detention centres !