Immigrants are facing an an-ever increasing wave of racism, violence, and pressure. Turkey’s security-centred migration policy, the fact that Turkey has used immigrants as a bargaining chip for its own political and geopolitical interests and its violation of international human rights agreements that have been also signed by Turkey, makes the lives of millions of immigrants, who have not been recognized as refugees and have already been leading insecure lives, even harder and lead to violations of their basic human rights. The latest example of this trend has been the recurrent practices of exportation, detention, and repulsion to cities of registration in the last few weeks.
Istanbul Governor’s Office recently announced that Syrians registered in another city must leave Istanbul by August 20. Even after this statement, there are new reports showing that Syrian refugees that are not registered in Istanbul are forced to sign a “voluntary return” document and deported to the regions such as Idlib, where violent clashes are ongoing. Witnesses say that the deported refugees are restrained with plastic handcuffs and are subjected to ill-treatment along the way. The recent statement by the interior minister, saying, “A guy comes from Africa with a watch, sells it for 10 Turkish liras. This scene, we cannot allow,” shows that the sole target of anti-migrant policy is not the Syrians. In the meantime, the xenophobic and anti-refugee sentiments are becoming more widespread due to the discourses of politicians across the political spectrum and the media, leading to attacks that amount to violence and lynching in some instances.
We know that the immigrants, who have fled their countries due to war, violence, persecution, and poverty to settle here, are not responsible for the unfolding economic crisis, climate crisis, and the wars. We want to live together and in solidarity with each other, against these problems caused by capitalism and the states. We want an end to all repressive practices that confine and discriminate people and limit their rights to mobility, life, and employment.
We defend living together against the rising racism and the unconditional right to travel for all against the border policies that have caused numerous lives. We will meet on August 2, Friday, at 7:30 p.m., in front of the Surreya Opera in Kadikoy, to say “Stop deportations, we want to live together!”
We Want to Live Together Initiative