Since a few days, the Kommissariat of Refugees in collaboration with the serbian police and serbian military is taking people away from the baracks behind the central train station in Belgrade. They force them to register and sent them to different official camps in Serbia. Since last August there have been living up to 800 people in the barracks mostly selforganized, after the Commissariat and Police evicted the Parks around the bus station. The people are stuck in Serbia, because the borders of the E.U. are all closed. The barracks were kind of a basic home for many people.
Although the barracks seem terrible for living, a lot of people rather choosed them than to live in an official camp. To be registered and to live in official camps can be dangerous, too, because there have been illegal push backs out of the camps during the night in the past. Also camps are often far away from the cities, there is a lack of social contact with local people. Often there is also a lack of infrastructure so they are dependend of the camp and have no autonomy.
The camps are controlled by the Commissariat for Refugees and monitored by the military through registration and closing times in the evening. The decision not to live in a camp is not a matter of luxury or being selective, it is rather the only way to stay visible, to live an independent life and to lower the psychological pressure of horrible thoughts running in circles because of boredom and thoughts about the family and experiences in the past.
The evictions in the last days are not in peoples but in states and capital interests. At the location of the barracks is a huge neoliberal project planned to be build throughout the coming years. With money from Saudi Arabia ´Belgrade Waterfront´ is rising: offices and hotels. The money is again more important than the fact that around 800 people lose their home. Because some of the refugees live in the barracks already since last summer. They are stuck in between. There is no possibility to go forward nor backwards, because of the closing of the so-called Balkanroute. The strengthening of the European borders of Fortress Europe and the EU-Turkeydeal were in the same interests as Belgrade Waterfront. They protect the capital in the EU and its expanding. The people who suffer from these interests will never have the chance for the same freedom and security the capital has.
As noticed again these days, the state is using violence against the refugees. Since three days they come in to the barracks, take people outside randomly, register them and send them to different camps like Krnjaca, Sombor and Obrenovac. The people have no possibility to chose the camp. Yesterday was the last morning, when they took all the people out, put them into busses and brought them to the different camps. When the Kommissariat came into the baracks early in the morning, they started spraying insecticide. https://vimeo.com/216821544
The Kommissariat said that they told people before, but there were still a lot of people inside the building and they didn’t have a chance to take out their stuff like tents and sleepingbags. Now there are only a few refugees left in Belgrade, but they have to take care because the police is using racial profiling because of searching for the last refugees to also bring them to camps.
The state is treating refugees as objects, without their own will. They register all the persons and bring them randomly to camps without taking care of where the people want to go themselves or bring friends or the family together. Refugees are not treated only as objects, but as dangerous objects which should be controlled. Being under the general suspicion by the state as illegal persons , thus the state installs their justification to rule over the people and take away their own decisions. All under the conviction to know what’s best for the people.
Another shocking fact is the way foreign voluntary groups, who were working in the barracks for the last months are reacting at the situation. Info Park stressed the good way they were working together with the state: ´Today’s action was another fine example of good collaboration between independent organizations and state institutions. BelgrAID and Evangelist volunteers provided lunch packets for every refugee on the bus, Info Park arranged a bus and detailed info kits for the travelers´. [https://www.facebook.com/infoparkserbia/posts/1305535786167349] Volunteers are rather helping the Kommissariat, than to show resistance and solidarise themselves with the refugees. ´They are even working together with the Kommersariat to help them to convince people to go to camps´, one friend told us.
Other groups are fortunately taking another position, like No Border Serbia: https://noborderserbia.wordpress.com/…/statement-regarding…/, and Are You Syrious https://medium.com/…/ays-daily-digest-10-05-2017-money-talk…. Also, one person of the barracks made a video, after the evictions this morning https://scontent-frx5-1.xx.fbcdn.net/…/18417438_19086878361…, showed young boys left alone without their friends, cooking for themselves, finding their stuff being sprayed over with insecticide. But still there is no real resistance in Belgrade and nobody is protesting or showing solidarity with the people who just lost their home.
We want to call out to all the people in Belgrade and around the world to show solidarity with the refugees. People should be free in where they want to move, and humans should be more worth than capital.
Fight Belgrade Waterfront, fight capital interests!
Solidarity with refugees!
What can you do now?
Follow the situation on twitter: https://twitter.com/bm_serbia
Make your friends and people aware!