Greece: About the hunger strike of Mohamed A, a refugee facing deportation to Turkey

Since October 2016, Mohamed A. has been in administrative detention at the police station on Lesbos and he is facing deportation since his political asylum applications have been rejected. Mohamed began a hunger strike on the 12th of December in order to be granted asylum and prevent his deportation to Turkey.

With the gradual deterioration of his health in the last few days, he was taken to Vostaneio Hospital of Mytilene where doctors judged that his admission for proper healthcare would be necessary. Mohamed was taken back to jail in order to collect his possessions with the reassurance that he would be taken back to hospital, but as soon as he got back to the jail the police kept him there and told him he would be taken back the next morning. When he got back to the hospital the next day, he was deceived into giving his consent for voluntary discharge after being told that he would be soon transferred to Athens. In spite of those promises, on December 12th, the chief of the local police department announced that Mohamed would be deported to Turkey via the processes determined by the E.U.- Turkey deal. Due to the insistence of people in solidarity and certain attorneys Mohamed was admitted to the hospital, where he was given an IV treatment for symptoms of exhaustion (dizzy, collapsed, blurry vision) . His hospitalization eventually led to the cancellation of his deportation to Turkey which unfortunately did not apply for the 10 immigrants deported back to Turkey this morning. While Mohamed is still in hospital the authorities are pressuring the doctors to sign his discharge in order to continue with his deportation. The authorities have also banned people in solidarity from visiting Mohamed, in complete disregard of the rules and regulations of the hospital.

By aiming to deport an immigrant hunger striker on the 32nd day of his hunger strike, the state and its servants are taking this totalitarianism a step further, since nothing similar has ever happened in the past for the obvious reason that the man’s life is in danger. These are the mechanisms of the state itself which could keep in captivity a 6 year-old child to take revenge against his parents, shut down events at public universities and torture thousands of immigrants daily in detention centers until their final deportation. A state which has the power to decide on the life and death of those who are no longer useful, those who are “too many”, those who resist.

We express our solidarity with all those subjected to the violence of separation, racism and exploitation. Our solidarity is with the hundreds of immigrants who have been deported and the thousands who remain captive inside the centers of detention, isolation and deportation. Our solidarity is with those who fight daily against the devaluation of human lives.

Solidarity with the hunger striker Mohamed A.
Grant his demands immediately.
Stop all deportations.

Musaferat, 13.01.2017

(via Musaferat, translated by BlackCat)

A letter from the hunger striker Mohamed A. (03.01.17)

When the heart becomes silent within the cage of the thorax, the entire body ceases its function. The pain might govern the heart but the true spirit lies in not giving up in time…

Heartbeats of pain in a prison cage

You shouldn’t care about what you might hold in your hands today because tomorrow you might lose it. One day you might find yourself in my place, you might be the visitor in my country. When that day comes I will be better than this! Don’t overestimate your power today, because tomorrow you might be in a hospital and I could be the one who donates blood. Generosity is in how I behave…

Do you think I could get convicted for speaking of justice and for all I feel for the suffering of the people around me? If people are found guilty for speaking of justice, for empowering the weak, for fighting against injustice and saying NO, then I accept the punishment. I would rather die an honest, courageous and decent man, telling the truth, than to live a life without honour and dignity, being a hypocrite. Even if I possessed half of the treasures of this entire world, that would mean nothing because you can’t buy these things with money. This is humanity. Not judging people by colour or religion. We are all equal here. If I am being punished for being human, then this is the purpose of torture: a life without honour, decency, justice. A life where the cowards reign. Oh my God! How brutal is this punishment of conscience…

I am full of strength and I am not forcing you to respect me because, at this time, my strength is fear. Now I am not using my strength because I am trying to understand what you are made of and to not be influenced by it. Because I am like gold: even if you melt it, it is still gold. I won’t change. You will not be able to decrease my potential and strength. Even if you don’t improve your behavior towards me I will not try to confront you, I will not become like you. I will remain as I am and nobody will stop me from speaking of justice.

Here, in this society many people feel what I mean to say because they are full of emotions, they have the ability to understand others and know the meaning of truth. They understand how good it feels to spread love among all religions. How beautiful it is to live in a society that does not know lies or hatred and only wishes for love and peace.

I will defend justice and equality and I will fight against injustice. I will support those who were treated unfairly. I will feel the pain of others even that costs my own lie. No, to a life without equality!

I will be the pen which spews the ink of justice so that the ones who suffered injustice would win and injustice would be demolished.

these questions were at the end of Mohamed’s letter

Where are those who say they defend human rights? Are those just words and do not exist in reality? Are you looking for an answer? Sorry, there is no answer.
This is not the whole story. This was just an introduction. Twenty-two days without food, I have no more strength. I want to speak to you about racism and the ethos of some people. I want to tell you what happened in Egypt. To speak to you about everything…

Thank you

(via Musaferat, translated by BlackCat)

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