24 hours

[Témoignage de Ramin, jeune afghan, après l’arrestation des afghans et de leur soutien, alors qu’ils contestaient  contre les décisions de refus d’asile par le Commissariat Général aux Réfugiés et Apatrides. D’autres points de vue : voir les témoignages de l’avocate arrêtée, celui d’un personne du soutien arrêtée, celui d’une personne du soutien non arrêtée. Plus de contenu sur la page du collectif afghan]

Around 9 ‘o clock in the morning I was chillin’ on my laptop. Suddenly, my GSM ringed… “Ramin, where are you? The journalists of Deutch Welle are waitin’ for your interview!” I said: “oh… I’m so sorry Samir, I’m leavin’ just right now -Next time you should be clear when you make an appointment for me- “Harry up!”, said Samir. After wearin’ my clothes and looking myself in the mirror, I took the bus to Antwerp and the train to Brussels. The journalist called me when I was in the train and said: “Ramin, where are you? The appointment was at 11 ‘o clock and we are waiting…” I said: “I’m comin’ in few minutes, my excuse.” When I arrived in Brussels-Nord, I took the tram to Rogier and switched to the direction of Trône. I was blocked inside the metro station, because I was black in the metro. It took long time to find a way to come out of the station.

I have less believe in what they say on TV about the Afghans. I want my own evidence, my own interpretation. That is my message.

I have less believe in what they say on TV about the Afghans. I want my own evidence, my own interpretation. That is my message.

When I arrived in rue du trône 127(building which was occupied by the Afghans), they were interviewin’ my friend, Rashid. Later, it was my turn. The questions were very classic: how you came to Belgium? Why you came to Belgium? How long you are already here? Etc. The main point was about Dublin. I explained that Maggie De Block (state secretary of asylum and migration) put people on street. Because people gave their finger prints first in Belgium, which is member of the European Union, asks the Belgian government the country to send the asylum seekers back to Belgium. It means people can’t go to another country to find a solution for their situation. And the consequence of coming back to Belgium is one more time illegal on streets. The journalists asked me some more individual questions and then finished the interview with showing lots of sympathy for the condition of the Afghans.

I sit on chair in the place which we call the ‘reception’, felt too tired and was lost in complicated dreams, thoughts and in misery of being Ramin. Suddenly something happened. The police came into the reception and awoke me! It was like when I’m chillin’ in the toilet and someone comes to disturb me! I stood up and shook hand with brotha’s of different motha’s. “Wij vragen u om rustig ‘t gebouw leeg te maken, zonder problemen”, said the police in Dutch. “Can I see the court’s order, please?”, I said. They gave it to me. After reading the papers, they asked me to tell my name and sign the paper to make the expulsion formal. I said: “Can you wait a lil bit for that please?”

During my dialogue with the commissioner of police, went the federal police to upstairs and started to use force to put a family and some guys out of the building. The rest were protesting in ‘art-loi’. I took my camera. Pushed on record button and went around to film, to have some evidence – after what happened in ‘rue la loi’ with the police, I have less believe in what they say on TV about the Afghans. I want my own evidence, my own interpretation. That is my message.

The rest were protesting in ‘art-loi’. I took my camera.

The rest were protesting in ‘art-loi’. I took my camera.

In the second floor I had discussion with the general. He said: “You leave the building as quiet as possible. I don’t want that the people stay in front of the door: I don’t want any trouble!” 55 D.Boy said: “It didn’t happen last time when you expulsed us, so…” After dissing the general, I went back to the reception. I put my camera in my red bag, took another one and started to take pictures. Guess what happened! When I was comin’ out of the building, in front of the door were lots of police standin’ who felt themselves like a superman who always wears his underwear on his trousers. I was walking out and took some pictures of them: clik, clak, clik… I felt a hand holdin’ my biceps and heard: “give me the camera!”, a threated voice entered my ears and caused a typical 55 D.Boy’s action. I looked him and gave the camera. He deleted maybe one of the unforgettable memories of my life. I don’t know… He took the SD-card with the battery out of the camera, brought me few meters further and gave my material back. Just two steps forward I fixed everything and clik, clak, clik, took again pictures. Run!!!


Just two steps forward I fixed everything and clik, clak, clik, took again pictures. Run!!!

Just two steps forward I fixed everything and clik, clak, clik, took again pictures. Run!!!

I was watching the mini Afghanistan (building where we lived for a while) when my cellphone ringed… “We are strikin’ on street in ‘art-loi’ as reaction on what the police are doing in mini Afghanistan -As French people say ‘action, reaction’- I said: “I’m comin’.” So, I moved to ‘art-loi’ –my own believe, my own evidence –

I saw people sitting on street. Saw tired faces, but felt the energy stronger than ever! I saw a revolutionary Afghan woman, Marwa. She was walking among the people giving them the vitamins which were needed to keep their psychology healthy. My respects for her increased, like corruption in Afghanistan. At the other side I saw the families with the impression, ‘we never give it up!’ The lawyers were sitting in a peaceful battlefield. I saw the mini Afghanistan’s mama, Selma. “Lady, you got no idea what you mean for this people”, said 55 D.Boy – Sometimes I think she can be a good rapper – When you see her really talkin’ oh dear… At the other side, I saw Samir dissin’ the police general (who expulsed the Afghans in ‘rue du trône’). “Damn! This guy got some balls”, I said to myself. A voice rose and said:” stand up and move by your own will, otherwise we use force to get you out of here!” The second voice, the dominant one said:” stay on the ground, they are just trying to scare us!” It should be the revolutionary Afghan woman. Don’t you think so? Yes, she is. She is Marwa. I started to take her picture while she was sharin’ the vitamins.  No-one give a shit about what the police was sayin’. We were sitting on a bridge between two lanes in ‘art-loi’. The police started to come from all over. They pushed the people against each other until they formed a massive flesh block. I saw the police usin’ pepper gas on Afghans. The message is still ‘take evidence’, clik, clak, clik… They shut down one of my image channel. The other one was busy with taking pictures. They used gas on my face. Nothing is clear. Lens is not working. Can’t open my eye. Everyone is in panic. Children are crying. Mama is looking for her kid. She shouts. She begs for her kid. Anne can’t open her eyes and Hadi as well. The police beat Ali on his head. Back up! Ali is on the ground. People are screamin’. Anne Denis runs to Ali. She shouts on police. She sits near Ali. Oh God! Ali is in shock. His head is bleeding like running water. I don’t know which images was projecting his mind but, I do know he was surrounding by pain and his own misery. The police took his two arms and pulled hem like a dead body. I thought they will bring hem to the hospital, but they brought hem just out the circle of misery field and let hem bleed. Ali will survive, he is an Afghan, maybe that’s what the police had in his mind. I still can’t open my right eye. A arm came around my upper body, felt warm, hugged me and said: ”everything will be ok”. He was Joris (professor, my friend). I said to myself: “yeah, everything gonna be owright -Bob Marley-”. But, I need to take picture: my own evidence, my own believe. After that I lost Joris, I followed my own way. I’m blocked.

 I thought they will bring hem to the hospital, but they brought hem just out the circle of misery field and let hem bleed.

I thought they will bring hem to the hospital, but they brought hem just out the circle of misery field and let hem bleed.

They started to arrest the Afghans one by one. When it came to me, I said: “don’t touch me! I come voluntary…” They put my red bag on my chests and tied up my hands, like a criminal. You know? Before, they gave me different names: illegal, asylum seeker, migrant,… Now, for the first time they treated me as a criminal. I felt nothing, like always 55 D.Boy is chillin’ in the city. They made two lines of 179 Afghans who were arrested and got them into the bus, like in the Hollywood movies when they bring the rude boys to the jail.

It’s getting hot in the bus.  Pepper gas is burning my face and my neck. Everything tastes spicy: my lips, my sweater. The phone is ringing, I can’t answer. I see Samir sitting in front of me in another seat. He can’t open his eyes. Tears flow and flow like water. He looked to Selma at the end of the bus and asked:” did you call someone to pick up the kids after school?” She laughed and said:”noooow.” After a while Camille started to sing with Selma a French song that I never heard before. They got everyone calm. It was like mama’s were singing for their babies and the babies were enjoyin’ the atmosphere. The police, who disrespected me, was laughin’ off the song. I don’t know why. Maybe they have allergy against those kinds of songs. I discussed with the police woman who stood in front of me. I told her to check my facebook group, ‘Raminism’ to find more information about respect. Her answer was: “I don’t have any facebook.” Haha, I’m not surprised.

We arrived in Schaerbeek, in jail. They locked everyone in different cells. At the first sight it felt dark, cold and isolated. I was already locked up in my life’s misery in asylum centra, but this time was it different. I was in a real cell, mentally and physically. About first thing that I thought, was getting my arms free and SMS to all journalists to inform them about the incident, which I did. After, I took one pic of my arm, yeah! What a good feeling! I was just chillin’ around in the cell when Samir asked me to send a text to someone to pick up his kids out of school, which I did. Everybody was calling, texting his family and relatives. I thought about my mom, she is always in tension when I’m absent home. I looked to my GSM. Ohh, Shit!! Battery is low. “I’m in Brussels, my battery is low and everything is ok. Tell to my mom, no tension if I don’t answer”, I said to my bro. Then, I thought about Joris who was arrested because of supportin’ us. By text I asked him how he is. His answer was that he is fine. He ended his sentence with a strong word ‘respect’. Roommates said: “the police are coming…” I tied my arms again in my back. The officer opened the door and asked very polite: “who got Belgian nationality here?” Oepss… Did I say polite? Samir was the only lucky one with Belgian nationality, sounds cool! No? They took Samir and never brought him back to our cell. Later, I discovered he was alone in other cell. Few minutes later the officers came in group to take us for control and identification. I was taken by the police woman to who I taught the meaning of respect in the bus. She was very nice, maybe because I spoke Dutch. She said to other officers that I’m her boyfriend. At the control, they opened my arms and said: “voila se, een Vlaming.” The police man beside me, asked me: “what you do for living?” I said: “I’m student.” His reaction was: “is it not better to study than being here?” I said: “why you say that?” he said: “I mean, then we didn’t have to arrest you.” “I can’t accept that Maggie De Block, state secretary of asylum and migration, put families on street and forces them to go back voluntary to Afghanistan.”, I said. The police man said: “we can’t welcome whole the world in Belgium.” They took my bag and started to mess. While my girlfriend was asking my name, the other police turned my camera on. He was looking for the pics. Unfortunately the memory was already hided by 55 D.Boy. Shortly they discovered that I’m an asylum seeker. They were surprised and brought me to the responsible of Commissariat General. The lady said: “you may let him go with Belgians at 18 ‘o clock.” The police asked: “which Belgians?” The lady replied: “the real Belgians.” My girlfriend dropped me back to my cell and said very politely that she gonna let me go at 18 ‘o clock. Minutes passed like centuries, my girlfriend didn’t come back to let me go. I didn’t know what time it was. I kept looking out of the small holes of the metal door. They were making fun with Afghans who couldn’t speak the language, who just could smile as reaction. Behind the cold metal I felt the temperature of my body disincreasing. I shouted: “I have to go to the toilet!” No response. “I have to go to the toilet!”, I shouted again. It took four hours to may go to the toilet. Before that, they brought 12 bottles of water (0.5L) for eighteen persons with some slices of bread. Oh! You know? The guy, who accompanied me to the toilet, said just six words to me when I was washing my face, which was burning: “you wanna take a shower here?” I feel sorry for them if they treat their wife, kids or people in their neighbourhood like that. Life is beautiful if you have seen the dark side of it. When I came back to the Stone Age, my body started to tremble. I wore just a sweater on my upper body. I asked them more than ten times to give me my jacket which was just in front of the door in a big plastic box. They all ignored me, except one who first checked my jacket and then delivered it to me. I said: “Dank u vriendelijk.” With my jacket I was in a better condition but, I still felt the cold. I experienced for the second time in my life such a situation. First time was in the Ice Age during our travel to Europe. We arrived to an island by boat in the middle of nowhere. My clothes were wet. We were wet. We walked forward to a hill and slept there in group to create some temperature to survive. I still know. I woke up. My body was shaking and water in my nose was frozen. I will never forget that moment of my life. Some of things you just can’t delete out of your memory and they involve you whole your life. They don’t let you forget who you are. People tell me sometimes I’m smart for my age. Yes, I’m. It’s because when you were playin’ with your friends as a seven years old kid, at the same age I was working in big companies in Pakistan to feed a mother and a brother. Sometimes you try to understand a situation but, you can’t feel just because you never experienced. Now, in the Stone Age I tried to sleep, but it wasn’t succeeded. I couldn’t sleep more than three minutes, cause I felt the cold in my bones. I tried different ways to sleep: on my back, I put my legs on the wall to have as less as possible contact with the ground. Not succeeded! I slept maximum three minutes and it was the longest try. I started to walk from one corner to the other corner, like the prisoners do. I want to think about something, but my mind is empty like a new born baby. Damn! Out of these walls I got so much tension in my mind! And now? Nothing! It’s time to think… I want to think about my first love and the computer says: “ERROR!”

I was already locked up in my life’s misery in asylum centra, but this time was it different. I was in a real cell, mentally and physically.

I was already locked up in my life’s misery in asylum centra, but this time was it different. I was in a real cell, mentally and physically.

Some police came and opened the door. Took us with a minibus to other block for the finger print. When I discovered that they want to take picture of me, first I made my hair and said: “it’s not the right moment for the photo-shoot!” The sexy lady behind the desk laughed and said: “you got reason.” After finishing of process, they dropped us back with three bodyguards. This century was over.

The new century is begun. The light came slowly to touch our body. For me every comin’ day is better than the past day and today is not yesterday. I was happy. They gonna let me go at six ‘o clock in the morning. No-one came… I was stuck like a mosquito behind the door and was analyzing each move in the out world.

I have nothing to do. 55 D.Boy who organize every comin’ month when he is home, has nothing to do.

After looking every single detail on walls, I found a small piece of metal on the ground. I started to write on wall: ’55 D.Boy was here 23/10/2013’, ‘Protection 4 Afghans in Belgium’. I don’t know how long I was busy… But I know, I didn’t stop until my fingers hurt and swollen a lil bit. In the middle of the century my girlfriend opened the door. She was surprised after seeing me. She said: “are you still here?” I said: “I was waiting for you at 18 ‘o clock, but you didn’t come back and the others were too kind to listen to me.” She said: “oh! At 18 ‘o clock we were shifted and the other crew came in duty. Ok, now you can go.” I walked out with her to the entrance. My hands were in my pocket. One tall guy passed beside me and hit hard my shoulder and walked further. My girlfriend said that he wants to say ‘put your hands out of your pocket’, it’s not allowed here. I angrily said: “he doesn’t have a mouth to talk!” So, in their office they gave me my bag and I opened the zip to check that everything is ok. The police behind the table said: “do you think there is thief between the police?” I answered: “yes, it’s possible.” He laughed. We got on the bus. Few minutes later they dropped us in front of VUB(free university of Brussels) at 14:30 right 24 hours after the arrestation. When I got off the bus, I said to the police: “tot volgende keer”, which means see you next time in Dutch. I breathe very deep the fresh wind through my longs. I’m free…!

Written by 55 D.Boy

04/11/2013 at 23:14 Schoten/Belgium


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