Urgent Call to Support Kurds from German Deportation

george writes "e-mail: libasoli.bremen@gmx.de


Urgent call for international support (27.01.02)

Campaign for Solidarity with stateless Lebanese Kurds

Deportation of 550 stateless Lebanese Kurds from City of Bremen
After 12 years of settlement in Bremen, going to school, having found
employment or businesses established a group of 550 of our colleagues,
friends, neighbours and schoolmates have been served with deportation
For two years, a solidarity campaign could win time again and again, but
by now things have been worsened.

We now need any support from any level to get through the obvious
solution: a right to stay on humanitarian grounds.

We need YOUR protest fax or email from wherever in the world you are
based. The authorities need to understand that they are watched by many.
So, please take some minutes to write a protest note to the addresses
listed below.


Here are some details about the Bremen based campaign against the
deportation of 550 stateless Kurdish Lebanese. There are similar
campaigns in Lower Saxon and Northrhine Westfalia, though at
earlier stages. Altogether about 10.000+ individuals are concerned.

The main source of information is the website www.libasoli.de, there in
particular the Grundungserklarung, the link Antirassismusburo leads a
another list including an English document, "DNA tests to prove bogus
Lebanese are Turkish", Statewatch, No. 1 2001, p. 5.

Because it is several families with several hundred members their
migration histories are very complex and differ from case to case. The
following summary only lists some of the main features.

In short, these people belong to a group of Arabic speaking Kurds
originally from some areas in the Mardin province who fled Turkey either
after the first Kurdish uprisings in the 1920s or during the 1940s to
settle in Lebanon. There, they have never been naturalised as citizens
and remained stateless for generations. Some even have Lebanese birth
certificates and various other Lebanese documents for example Beirut
residence registrations. During the 1980s civil war they found
themselves in the crossfire between the different parties and fled
again. Some directly came to Germany, but most however, because they did
not have any IDs first went to Turkey, bribed some village mayors to get
registered onto the populations registrar in order to obtain false
Turkish IDs. These allowed them to travel to Germany.
Whilst up to 1995, because of the deportation stop for Kurds to Turkey
most Kurds subsequently got a right to stay, this group never enjoyed
such provisions.

Since 1999, the Bremen Senator for Interior in order to solve that
situation first launched a public campaign to criminalise the entire
group as bogus asylum seekers. Additionally, they were labbelled as
welfare fraudsters, because during all these years, whilst most had been
their a work permits refused they received benefits of course.
Some of the media have already been warned by the German Press Council
for their practice of treating them all the same.

The second main argument is that because they are registered in Turkey,
they can be treated as Turks, hence be deported to Turkey. That
is despite the fact that none of the second generation and few of the
first generation would speak any Turkish (they are all Arabic speaking)
and despite the fact that they do not have any relatives in Turkey. So,
obviously, it is a rather weak argument and quite some of the Turkish
data is obviously false like age, name etc it has been confirmed by
Bremen Administrative courts.

Another problem is that some of the male sons have criminal records (for
usually minor offences) and some socialisation deficits though none has
ever been served with a sentence of three years or more, which would
legitimise a deportation order due to German Foreigners Law. However,
most family members and in particular the female members are well
integrated with no criminal records at all. The few petty criminals are
basically used to punish the many innocent.

In course of the criminalisation campaign they first got their residence
permits and second their work permits withdrawn (in case they had one);
some families got their jewellery confiscated others their property or
businesses; one family had to close down their green grocery. Some
second generation youth did lose their apprenticeship, another had to
step out of his hight school education. The mother of the family after
several nervous breakdowns is a traumatised and broken person, now. In
its latest step, the families have been served with new names, Turkish
names and have been served with letters stating that from now on any
attempt to use their Arabic names would be treated a criminal offence.

By day to day pressure these families got their livelyhood destroyed,
their dignity smashed and their will broken.

Over the time serious concerns and a massive support has been expressed
including the Childrens' Safety Alliance, the Juvenile Parole Board, the
Senat's Foreigners Committee, the Senat's Youth Committee, the
Foreigners Ombudswomen, the Green Party, Pro Asyl, the Pupils Union, the
Parents' Union, several Head Teachers and complete schools' teachers
assemblies, several trade union officials, and some Social Democratic,
Christian Democratic and Green MPs etc the campaign has as yet been
unable to gain a break through. The Senat as such and the Senator for
Interior in particular did not move a centimeter.

Numerous press statements, public hearings, research reports, experts
opinions, academical reports, solicitors arguments etc provide evidence
of the said.

The fierce and committed policy of Bremen's Senator of Interior Kuno
Böse and his staff in the Foreign Department is beyond any description.
Without having witnessed the two-years long meticulous campaign to break
these families one would not believe that this could happen again in

At present, the situation is extrem desparate and tense. Most members of
the leading family, the El-Zeins are either in deportation prison
awaiting their deportation (even a 15 year ald youth), unfit to travel
because of nervous breakdown (mother) or other illnesses (daughter) or
in hiding. The Interior Senator aims to deport them one by one and
thereby dividing the family in order to increase pressure on the others.
This policy also divides the families of the sons as only the male are
served with deportation orders whilst the daughters-in-law by and large
have a safe status, one even has her naturalisation case pending. That
is made possible because these marriages, agreed under Islamic law are
not acknowledged by the Bremen Foreign Department.

The other families will suffer the same fate, soon.

All this raises a range of questions ranging from hardship and
humanitarian/compassionate grounds (they are settled in Bremen for 12
years now, all the children have been brought up in Bremen with most of
the grand children even born here); family's rights; childrens' rights
and implementation of UN Childrens' Rights Convention; and equal
treatment of Islamic marriages. All these rights, including human rights
are trampled on.

In this case, any support or any intervention from any side would be
most welcome. In particular political pressure needs to be increased on
Bremen's Senator for Interior. Although his main argument is that all
legal opportunities are exhausted the most obvious solution is one on
humanitarian/compassionate grounds and childrens' rights.

What these people so desperately need is mercy and peace.

Any letter of support, any query or comment shall be send to
libasoli.bremen@gmx.de or george@is-bremen.de, copy to

Any letter of concern, any public enquiry or any protest should be faxed
or emailed to the Senat and to Senator of Interior, including a copy to
the support campaign.


Senator für Inneres, Kultur und Sport

Herr Dr. Kuno Boese

Fax 49-421-361 9009

e-mail: office@inneres.bremen.de

An den

Chef der Senatskanzlei

Herr Prof Dr. Hoffmann

Fax 49-421- 361 6363

e-mail office@sk.bremen.de

Copy please to:

Flüchtlingsinitiative Bremen e.V.

Fax 49-421-70 57 75

e-mail: libasoli.bremen@gmx.de"