Oranienplatz activist in deportation custody – Refugee Council demands release

On July 29, 2014, Badra Ali Diarra, an activist from Oranienplatz, was taken into custody pending deportation at the instigation of the Börde Aliens Office (Saxony-Anhalt). He is to be deported to Italy. The man from Mali is part of the so-called Oranienplatz agreement with the Senate. However, he did not receive the redistribution to Berlin and subsequent case-by-case examination promised by the Senate. The deportation stop promised in the settlement paper is also not granted.

01.08.14: Oranienplatz activist in deportation custody – Refugee Council demands release

Press release from 01 August 2014

The Berlin Refugee Council calls on the Senate to immediately intervene for the man’s release and to assume responsibility under aliens law.

The Senate’s agreement paper stipulates that all registered Orange Square refugees should receive comprehensive counseling and assessment regarding their options under residency law. No deportations are to be carried out until the review is completed. The prerequisite for this is that Berlin declares itself responsible for the refugees in the first place. Contrary to what was agreed, however, the Berlin Foreigners’ Office refuses in principle to assume responsibility for the participants in the Oranienplatz Agreement.

This has now been Mr. Diarra’s undoing: because his foreigners authority in Saxony-Anhalt does not feel bound in any way by the Berlin Senate’s agreement paper and the promised halt to deportation, it has imposed custody pending deportation. Due to a lack of suitable detention facilities in Saxony-Anhalt, the man was detained in Berlin’s Grünau deportation detention center.

B.A. Diarra had fled to Italy in 2011 to escape the Libyan civil war. Due to a lack of livelihood opportunities in Italy, he came to Germany a year and a half ago. There he joined the protest movement at Oranienplatz and has since been intensively campaigning for a fairer asylum policy. The goal of the mid-20-year-old: To finally obtain a right of residence in Berlin, to graduate from high school and to study. He is very afraid of deportation, because in Italy he is threatened with homelessness and hunger: “In Italy there is no place to sleep, you sleep outside, some die outside. There is no money to feed yourself,” says Badra Ali Diarra.

“The agreement paper between Oranienplatz activists and the Senate degenerates into a farce if refugees are deported before they can even present themselves at the Berlin Foreigners Authority and apply for a residence permit. The Senate must immediately fulfill the promises made in the settlement paper, take responsibility for the refugees and grant them a residence perspective in Berlin,” says Martina Mauer, spokesperson for the Refugee Council.

But even independently of the Oranienplatz agreement, Diarra must be released immediately: Only last week, the Federal Court of Justice clarified that detention pending deportation in Dublin proceedings – and such is the case here – is predominantly illegal. Diarra’s lawyer has already filed a detention appeal.

Press contact: Refugee Council Berlin, Tel: 030 24344 57 62