For Freedom of Movement & Fair Development!

Shut down Friedersdorf-Camp (May 2013)

Preliminary Note: Already for months refugees in Friedersdorf in Sachen-Anhalt have been protesting against their accomodation in the refugee respective barrack camp Friedersdorf – most recently on the 30th of april with a blockade of the access road to the camp (among other things with trunks) which lasted several hours. Still those who are politically responsible have done almost nothing so far. This is the reason why the transnational network Afrique-Europe-Interact – on the initiative of the protesting refugees – has written an open letter of protest to those responsible in the district area of Anhalt-Bitterfeld. It is the aim that as many people as possible support this letter of protest. Therefore we ask you to take 15 minutes, in order to fax or post this letter of protest to the authorities (if need be you can also mail it): Dr. Sabine Engst, Sozialdezernentin, Landkreis Anhalt-Bitterfeld: Fax: 03496 60-1282, Phone: 03496 60-0, Adress: Am Flugplatz 1, 06366 Köthen, Mail:*


Street and Housenumber

Concerns: open letter to those who are politically responsable for the refugee camp Friedersdorf in the adminstrative district Anhalt-Bitterfeld

Dear Sir or Madam,
dear Sozialdezernentin Dr. Engst,
dear Mr. Kriebisch, head of the social assistance office Anhalt-Bitterfeld,
dear Ms. Zoschke, head of the health select and social committee,
dear Mister Maaß, head of the awards committee,

as you know in the past eight months there have been repeadedly protests from the side of the inhabitants of the communal accomodation in Friedersdorf. Therefore I want to explicitly express my solidarity with the protests. I do this for at least three reasons:

Firstly, because the forced stay in communal accomodations, which often lasts for several years, is a massive intrusion in the privacy and therefore a violation of the fundmental human right of the free development of the individual, as it is for example written in article 2, section 1 in the German constitution. The prohibition to work or do an apprenticeship, which has been decreed by the the law of residence and which has been strongly critiziced for yerars should not be additionally aggravated by the form of accomodation.

Secondly I support the protest because many of those affected suffer from severe emotional distress due to the social isolation – a fact which has been pointed out by the refugees in Friedersdorf in the last protest action very clearly: „Freedom is a right for all human beings. Isolation destroys our minds. No one is illegal.“ In addition, about 40 % of asylum seekers are already traumatized. For them having to live in a communal accomodation is a special strong burden. Several studies show that this form of living often leads to the development or manifestation of post-traumatic stress disorder.

Thirdly I declare my solidarity with the protests, because the communal accomodation in Friedersdorf goes against the standards which have been imposed by the federal state of Sachsen-Anhalt, as they have been decided on in the 'guidelines for the accomodation of refugees' by the department for Interior and Sports on the 15th of january 2013. The houses are in a dreadful condition – even if the private operator claims the opposite – including an overcrowding of the rooms on a regular basis. In addition there are no trained social workers availabe, leaving aside the massive complaints of the inhabitants about the utterly disrespectful and racist behaviour of the employees. Called to mind should be especially the delayed delivery of important letters from the authorities by the management, which the inhabitants could prove through the respective postmark.

The situation in communal accomodations such as Friedersdorf is highly alarming, even scandalous. I therefore ask the district of Anhalt-Bittefeld to terminate all their contracts for communal accomodation as quick as possible and provide decentral urban accomodation for the inhabitants. This also means that all attempts at intimidation of the protesting refugees – be they by the warden or by state authorities – have to be offensively confronted.