• Cartographie | La migration des mineurs non accompagnés
    https://asile.ch/2019/01/03/cartographie-la-migration-des-mineurs-non-accompagnes-2

    Combien sont-ils ces enfants partis seul·es sur les routes de l’exil ? D’où viennent-ils ? Comment les accueille-t-on et les protège-t-on ? Eurostat développe et publie des statistiques sur les mineurs non accompagnés [1]. Des données qui permettent de spatialiser notre regard sur cet aspect de la migration internationale. Ce dossier cartographique a été réalisé par Philippe […]


  • Quoi qu’il en soit, Trump ne quittera pas la Syrie et l’Afghanistan Stephen Gowans - 2 Janvier 2019 - Investigaction
    https://www.investigaction.net/fr/117672

    Il ne fait que transférer le fardeau sur les alliés et compter davantage sur les mercenaires

    Le retrait annoncé des troupes américaines de #Syrie et la diminution des troupes d’occupation en #Afghanistan ne correspondent très probablement pas à l’abandon par les #États-Unis de leurs objectifs au #Moyen-Orient, mais bien plutôt à l’adoption de nouveaux moyens pour atteindre les buts que la politique étrangère américaine vise depuis longtemps. Plutôt que de renoncer à l’objectif américain de dominer les mondes arabe et musulman par un système colonialiste et une occupation militaire directe, le président #Donald_Trump ne fait que mettre en œuvre une nouvelle politique – une politique basée sur un transfert plus important du fardeau du maintien de l’#Empire sur ses alliés et sur des soldats privés financés par les monarchies pétrolières.

    Le modus operandi de Trump en matière de relations étrangères a été constamment guidé par l’argument que les alliés des États-Unis ne parviennent pas à peser leur poids et devraient contribuer davantage à l’architecture de la sécurité américaine. Recruter des alliés arabes pour remplacer les troupes américaines en Syrie et déployer des #mercenaires (appelés par euphémisme des fournisseurs de sécurité) sont deux options que la Maison-Blanche examine activement depuis l’année dernière. De plus, il existe déjà une importante présence alliée et mercenaire en Afghanistan et le retrait prévu de 7000 soldats américains de ce pays ne réduira que marginalement l’empreinte militaire occidentale.

    Le conflit entre le secrétaire américain à la Défense #Jim_Mattis et Trump quant à leurs visions du monde est perçu à tort comme l’expression d’opinions contradictoires sur les objectifs américains plutôt que sur la manière de les atteindre. Mattis privilégie la poursuite des buts impériaux des États-Unis par la participation significative de l’armée américaine tandis que Trump favorise la pression sur les alliés pour qu’ils assument une plus grande partie du fardeau que constitue l’entretien de l’empire américain, tout en embauchant des fournisseurs de sécurité pour combler les lacunes. Le but de Trump est de réduire la ponction de l’Empire sur les finances américaines et d’assurer sa base électorale, à qui il a promis, dans le cadre de son plan « #America_First », de ramener les soldats américains au pays.

    Fait significatif, le plan de Trump est de réduire les dépenses des activités militaires américaines à l’étranger, non pas comme fin en soi mais comme moyen de libérer des revenus pour l’investissement intérieur dans les infrastructures publiques. De son point de vue, les dépenses pour la république devraient avoir la priorité sur les dépenses pour l’#Empire. « Nous avons [dépensé] 7 mille milliards de dollars au Moyen-Orient », s’est plaint le président américain auprès des membres de son administration. « Nous ne pouvons même pas réunir mille milliards de dollars pour l’infrastructure domestique. »[1] Plus tôt, à la veille de l’élection de 2016, Trump se plaignait que Washington avait « gaspillé 6 trillions de dollars en guerres au Moyen-Orient – nous aurions pu reconstruire deux fois notre pays – qui n’ont produit que plus de terrorisme, plus de mort et plus de souffrance – imaginez si cet argent avait été dépensé dans le pays. […] Nous avons dépensé 6 trillions de dollars, perdu des milliers de vies. On pourrait dire des centaines de milliers de vies, parce qu’il faut aussi regarder l’autre côté. » [2]

    En avril de cette année, Trump « a exprimé son impatience croissante face au coût et à la durée de l’effort pour stabiliser la Syrie » et a parlé de l’urgence d’accélérer le retrait des troupes américaines. [3] Les membres de son administration se sont empressés « d’élaborer une stratégie de sortie qui transférerait le fardeau américain sur des partenaires régionaux ». [4]

    La conseiller à la Sécurité nationale, #John_Bolton, « a appelé Abbas Kamel, le chef par intérim des services de renseignement égyptiens pour voir si le Caire contribuerait à cet effort ». [5] Puis l’#Arabie_ saoudite, le #Qatar et les Émirats arabes unis ont été « approchés par rapport à leur soutien financier et, plus largement, pour qu’ils contribuent ». Bolton a également demandé « aux pays arabes d’envoyer des troupes ». [6] Les satellites arabes ont été mis sous pression pour « travailler avec les combattants locaux #kurdes et arabes que les Américains soutenaient » [7] – autrement dit de prendre le relais des États-Unis.

    Peu après, #Erik_Prince, le fondateur de #Blackwater USA, l’entreprise de mercenaires, a « été contactée de manière informelle par des responsables arabes sur la perspective de construire une force en Syrie ». [8] À l’été 2017, Prince – le frère de la secrétaire américaine à l’Éducation #Betsy_De_Vos – a approché la Maison Blanche sur la possibilité de retirer les forces étasuniennes d’Afghanistan et d’envoyer des mercenaires combattre à leur place. [9] Le plan serait que les monarchies pétrolières du golfe Persique paient Prince pour déployer une force mercenaire qui prendrait la relève des troupes américaines.

    En avril, Trump a annoncé : « Nous avons demandé à nos partenaires d’assumer une plus grande responsabilité dans la sécurisation de leur région d’origine. » [10] La rédaction en chef du Wall Street Journal a applaudi cette décision. Le plan de Trump, a-t-il dit, était « la meilleure stratégie » – elle mobiliserait « les opposants régionaux de l’Iran », c’est-à-dire les potentats arabes qui gouvernent à la satisfaction de Washington en vue du projet de transformer « la Syrie en un Vietnam pour l’Ayatollah ». [11]

    En ce moment, il y a 14 000 soldats américains reconnus en Afghanistan, dont la moitié, soit 7 000, seront bientôt retirés. Mais il y a aussi environ 47 000 soldats occidentaux dans le pays, y compris des troupes de l’#OTAN et des mercenaires (14 000 soldats américains, 7 000 de l’OTAN [12] et 26 000 soldats privés [13]). Diviser la contribution étasunienne de moitié laissera encore 40 000 hommes de troupes occidentales comme force d’occupation en Afghanistan. Et la réduction des forces américaines peut être réalisée facilement en engageant 7000 remplaçants mercenaires, payés par les monarques du golfe Persique. « Le retrait », a rapporté The Wall Street Journal, « pourrait ouvrir la voie à un plus grand nombre d’entrepreneurs privés pour assumer des rôles de soutien et de formation », comme le souligne « la campagne de longue date d’Erik Prince ». Le Journal a noté que le frère de la secrétaire à l’Éducation « a mené une campagne agressive pour convaincre M. Trump de privatiser la guerre ». [14]

    La démission de Mattis a été interprétée comme une protestation contre Trump, qui « cède un territoire essentiel à la Russie et à l’Iran » [15] plutôt que comme un reproche à Trump de se reposer sur des alliés pour porter le fardeau de la poursuite des objectifs étasuniens en Syrie. La lettre de démission du secrétaire à la Défense était muette sur la décision de Trump de rapatrier les troupes américaines de Syrie et d’Afghanistan et insistait plutôt sur « les alliances et les partenariats ». Elle soulignait les préoccupations de Mattis sur le fait que le changement de direction de Trump n’accordait pas suffisamment d’attention au « maintien d’alliances solides et de signes de respect » à l’égard des alliés. Alors que cela a été interprété comme un reproche d’avoir abandonné le fer de lance américain en Syrie, les Kurdes, Mattis faisait référence aux « alliances et aux partenariats » au pluriel, ce qui indique que ses griefs vont plus loin que les relations des États-Unis avec les Kurdes. Au contraire, Mattis a exprimé des préoccupations cohérentes avec une plainte durable dans le milieu de la politique étrangère américaine selon laquelle les efforts incessants de Trump pour faire pression sur ses alliés afin qu’ils supportent davantage le coût du maintien de l’Empire aliènent les alliés des Américains et affaiblissent le « système d’alliances et de partenariats » qui le composent. [16]

    L’idée, aussi, que la démission de Mattis est un reproche à Trump pour l’abandon des Kurdes, est sans fondement. Les Kurdes ne sont pas abandonnés. Des commandos britanniques et français sont également présents dans le pays et « on s’attend à ce qu’ils restent en Syrie après le départ des troupes américaines ». [17] Mattis semble avoir été préoccupé par le fait qu’en extrayant les forces américaines de Syrie, Trump fasse peser plus lourdement le poids de la sécurisation des objectifs étasuniens sur les Britanniques et les Français, dont on ne peut guère attendre qu’ils tolèrent longtemps un arrangement où ils agissent comme force expéditionnaire pour Washington tandis que les troupes américaines restent chez elles. À un moment donné, ils se rendront compte qu’ils seraient peut-être mieux en dehors de l’alliance américaine. Pour Mattis, soucieux depuis longtemps de préserver un « système global d’alliances et de partenariats » comme moyen de « faire progresser un ordre international le plus propice à la sécurité, à la prospérité et aux valeurs [des États-Unis], le transfert du fardeau par Trump ne parvient guère à « traiter les alliés avec respect » ou à « faire preuve d’un leadership efficace », comme Mattis a écrit que Washington devrait le faire dans sa lettre de démission.

    Le président russe #Vladimir_Poutine a accueilli l’annonce de Trump avec scepticisme. « Nous ne voyons pas encore de signes du retrait des troupes américaines », a-t-il déclaré. « Depuis combien de temps les États-Unis sont-ils en Afghanistan ? Dix-sept ans ? Et presque chaque année, ils disent qu’ils retirent leurs troupes. » [18] Le #Pentagone parle déjà de déplacer les troupes américaines « vers l’#Irak voisin, où environ 5000 soldats étasuniens sont déjà déployés », et qui ‘déferleront’ en Syrie pour des raids spécifiques ». [19] Cette force pourrait aussi « retourner en Syrie pour des missions spéciales si des menaces graves surgissent » [20] ce qui pourrait inclure les tentatives de l’armée syrienne de récupérer son territoire occupé par les forces #kurdes. De plus, le Pentagone conserve la capacité de continuer de mener des « frappes aériennes et de réapprovisionner les combattants kurdes alliés avec des armes et du matériel » depuis l’Irak. [21]

    Trump n’a jamais eu l’intention d’apporter à la présidence une redéfinition radicale des objectifs de la politique étrangère américaine, mais seulement une manière différente de les atteindre, une manière qui profiterait de ses prouesses autoproclamées de négociation. Les tactiques de négociation de Trump n’impliquent rien de plus que de faire pression sur d’autres pour qu’ils paient la note, et c’est ce qu’il a fait ici. Les Français, les Britanniques et d’autres alliés des Américains remplaceront les bottes étasuniennes sur le terrain, avec des mercenaires qui seront financés par les monarchies pétrolières arabes. C’est vrai, la politique étrangère des États-Unis, instrument pour la protection et la promotion des profits américains, a toujours reposé sur quelqu’un d’autre pour payer la note, notamment les Américains ordinaires qui paient au travers de leurs impôts et, dans certains cas, par leurs vies et leurs corps en tant que soldats. En tant que salariés, ils ne tirent aucun avantage d’une politique façonnée par « des #élites_économiques et des groupes organisés représentant les intérêts des entreprises », comme les politologues Martin Gilens et Benjamin I. Page l’ont montré dans leur enquête de 2014 portant sur plus de 1700 questions politiques américaines. Les grandes entreprises, concluaient les chercheurs, « ont une influence considérable sur la politique gouvernementale, tandis que les citoyens moyens et les groupes fondés sur les intérêts des masses n’ont que peu d’influence ou pas d’influence du tout ». [22] Autrement dit, les grandes entreprises conçoivent la politique étrangère à leur avantage et en font payer le coût aux Américains ordinaires. 

    C’est ainsi que les choses devraient être, selon Mattis et d’autres membres de l’élite de la politique étrangère américaine. Le problème avec Trump, de leur point de vue, est qu’il essaie de transférer une partie du fardeau qui pèse actuellement lourdement sur les épaules des Américains ordinaires sur les épaules des gens ordinaires dans les pays qui constituent les éléments subordonnés de l’Empire américain. Et alors qu’on s’attend à ce que les alliés portent une partie du fardeau, la part accrue que Trump veut leur infliger nuit est peu favorable au maintien des alliances dont dépend l’Empire américain. 

    Notes :
    1. Bob Woodward, Fear : Trump in the White House, (Simon & Shuster, 2018) 307.

    2. Jon Schwarz, “This Thanksgiving, I’m Grateful for Donald Trump, America’s Most Honest President,” The Intercept, November 21, 2018.

    3. Michael R. Gordon, “US seeks Arab force and funding for Syria,” The Wall Street Journal, April 16, 2018.

    4. Gordon, April 16, 2018.

    5. Gordon, April 16, 2018.

    6. Gordon, April 16, 2018.

    7. Gordon, April 16, 2018.

    8. Gordon, April 16, 2018.

    9. Michael R. Gordon, Eric Schmitt and Maggie Haberman, “Trump settles on Afghan strategy expected to raise troop levels,” The New York Times, August 20, 2017.

    10. Gordon, April 16, 2018.

    11. The Editorial Board, “Trump’s next Syria challenge,” The Wall Street Journal, April 15, 2018.

    12. Julian E. Barnes, “NATO announces deployment of more troops to Afghanistan,” The Wall Street Journal, June 29, 2017.

    13. Erik Prince, “Contractors, not troops, will save Afghanistan,” The New York Times, August 30, 2017.

    14. Craig Nelson, “Trump withdrawal plan alters calculus on ground in Afghanistan,” The Wall Street Journal, December 21, 2018.

    15. Helene Cooper, “Jim Mattis, defense secretary, resigns in rebuke of Trump’s worldview,” The New York Times, December 20, 2018.

    16. “Read Jim Mattis’s letter to Trump : Full text,” The New York Times, December 20, 2018.

    17. Thomas Gibbons-Neff and Eric Schmitt, “Pentagon considers using special operations forces to continue mission in Syria,” The New York Times, December 21, 2018.

    18. Neil MacFarquhar and Andrew E. Kramer, “Putin welcomes withdrawal from Syria as ‘correct’,” The New York Times, December 20, 2018.

    19. Thomas Gibbons-Neff and Eric Schmitt, “Pentagon considers using special operations forces to continue mission in Syria,” The New York Times, December 21, 2018.

    20. Gibbons-Neff and Schmitt, December 21, 2018.

    21. Gibbons-Neff and Schmitt, December 21, 2018.

    22. Martin Gilens and Benjamin I. Page, “Testing Theories of American Politics : Elites, Interest Groups, and Average Citizens,” Perspectives on Politics, Fall 2014.
    Traduit par Diane Gilliard
    Source : https://gowans.wordpress.com/2018/12/22/no-matter-how-it-appears-trump-isnt-getting-out-of-syria-and-afgha


  • C.I.A.’s Afghan Forces Leave a Trail of Abuse and Anger - The New York Times
    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/31/world/asia/cia-afghanistan-strike-force.html

    NADER SHAH KOT, #Afghanistan — Razo Khan woke up suddenly to the sight of assault rifles pointed at his face, and demands that he get out of bed and onto the floor.

    Within minutes, the armed raiders had separated the men from the women and children. Then the shooting started.

    As Mr. Khan was driven away for questioning, he watched his home go up in flames. Within were the bodies of two of his brothers and of his sister-in-law Khanzari, who was shot three times in the head. Villagers who rushed to the home found the burned body of her 3-year-old daughter, Marina, in a corner of a torched bedroom.

    The men who raided the family’s home that March night, in the district of Nader Shah Kot, were members of an Afghan strike force trained and overseen by the Central Intelligence Agency in a parallel mission to the United States military’s, but with looser rules of engagement.

    #milices #CIA

    • Notorious CIA-Backed Units Will Remain in Afghanistan
      https://truthout.org/articles/as-trump-orders-us-out-of-afghanistan-notorious-cia-backed-units-will-rema

      Last fall, the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), Fatou Bensouda, asked the court’s Pre-Trial Chamber to open a formal investigation into the possible commission of war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by parties to the war in Afghanistan, including US persons.

      Bensouda’s preliminary examination found “a reasonable basis to believe” that “war crimes of torture and ill-treatment” had been committed “by US military forces deployed to Afghanistan and in secret detention facilities operated by the Central Intelligence Agency, principally in the 2003-2004 period, although allegedly continuing in some cases until 2014.”

      Bensouda noted these alleged crimes “were not the abuses of a few isolated individuals,” but rather “part of approved interrogation techniques in an attempt to extract ‘actionable intelligence’ from detainees.” She concluded there was “reason to believe” that crimes were “committed in the furtherance of a policy or policies … which would support US objectives in the conflict in Afghanistan.”

      #impunité #crimes #Etats-Unis


  • « Je suis devenu fou, je veux retourner au bled » : les migrants qui optent pour un #retour_volontaire

    L’aide au retour volontaire a concerné en 2018 plus de 10 000 personnes, dont beaucoup d’Afghans.

    Il a les yeux rouge vif. A plusieurs reprises, il demande s’il pourra aller aux toilettes après l’enregistrement. Dans un hall de l’aéroport Roissy-Charles-de-Gaulle, Noorislam Oriakhail vit ses derniers moments en France, fébrile. Il prend l’avion pour la première fois de sa vie. Au bout du voyage : l’Afghanistan. Comme 1 055 Afghans en 2018, des hommes majoritairement, Noorislam a choisi de rentrer. Ils étaient déjà 970 à avoir opté pour un « retour volontaire » depuis la France en 2017. Volet peu connu de la politique d’éloignement des étrangers en situation irrégulière, l’aide au retour volontaire a concerné cette année plus de 10 000 personnes au total, un chiffre en hausse de 58 % sur un an.

    Après les Albanais et devant les Moldaves, les Afghans sont les plus concernés par ce dispositif mis en œuvre par l’Office français de l’immigration et de l’intégration (OFII). Une situation qui s’explique : ils sont les premiers demandeurs d’asile en 2018. En outre, précise Didier Leschi, le directeur général de l’OFII, « lorsqu’ils arrivent en France, ils ont déjà déposé en moyenne près de deux demandes d’asile en Europe, principalement en Allemagne et en Suède, où elle a été rejetée ». Ils entrent donc dans la catégorie dite des « Dublinés », ne peuvent pas demander l’asile en France avant un délai de six à dix-huit mois. Dans l’intervalle, ils sont en situation irrégulière.

    L’OFII assume une politique volontariste à leur endroit : « Nous les démarchons pour leur proposer l’aide au retour, d’autant que les retours forcés sont très difficiles », reconnaît Didier Leschi. Au premier semestre, avec 23 éloignements, le taux d’exécution des obligations de quitter le territoire français prononcées à l’encontre des Afghans atteignait 4 %. En plus d’être moins onéreux qu’un éloignement forcé, les retours volontaires ont beaucoup plus de succès.

    « Trop de pression »

    Noorislam est « fatigué » de ne pas parvenir à s’extirper d’une situation précaire. D’un voyage entamé en 2006 et financé par son père et un oncle, il est arrivé « jeune et fort » sur le continent, avec l’Angleterre en ligne de mire. « C’était un rêve, reconnaît-il. J’ai essayé cinq ou six fois avant de réussir à monter dans un camion. » Outre-Manche, il est pris en charge en tant que mineur. Mais, à sa majorité, sa demande d’asile est rejetée et il devient « illégal ».

    Dans la ville de Loughborough (centre de l’Angleterre), Noorislam s’enfonce, affaibli par des soucis de santé. Le petit sac à dos qui lui fait office d’unique bagage après plus d’une décennie en Europe est « rempli de médicaments ». Le jeune homme souffre d’une dystrophie de la rétine – une maladie génétique caractérisée par un déficit visuel très important – et, depuis un an et demi, il explique avoir des problèmes d’incontinence. « Les médecins disent que c’est dans ma tête, assure-t-il, en montrant sa boîte d’antidépresseurs. Si je n’avais pas été malade, j’aurais pu m’en sortir mais, vu ma situation, je lutte pour tout. »

    « Si je n’avais pas été malade, j’aurais pu m’en sortir mais, vu ma situation, je lutte pour tout », témoigne Noorislam Oriakhail avant de monter dans l’avion

    Avec le sentiment d’avoir « perdu [son] temps », Noorislam s’est glissé dans un camion en janvier pour faire le chemin inverse de celui réussi il y a dix ans. Arrivé à Calais, après une nuit dans « le froid et la pluie », il croise des agents de l’OFII. Il est hébergé et on l’informe sur l’asile et le retour volontaire. « J’avais deux semaines pour choisir ou je devais quitter le centre », se souvient-il. Après des atermoiements, Noorislam s’oriente vers l’asile. Mais il est « dubliné », ce qui signifie qu’il risque d’être transféré vers l’Angleterre ou, à défaut, d’errer plusieurs mois avant de pouvoir déposer une demande en France. Il jette l’éponge. « C’est trop de pression », confie-t-il. Le jeune homme rentre en Afghanistan mais, en réalité, il ne doit pas s’y attarder. Sa famille s’est installée au Pakistan alors qu’il était enfant. « Mon père m’a dit qu’il m’aiderait à passer la frontière. »

    Le jour où Noorislam a embarqué, un autre Afghan devait prendre l’avion, mais il ne s’est jamais présenté. En 2018, quelque 1 500 personnes se sont ainsi désistées après avoir demandé une aide au retour. « Ce sont des gens qui peuvent être instables psychologiquement, justifie Didier Leschi. Il y a quelques semaines, un Pakistanais a fait une crise d’angoisse et a dû être débarqué avant le décollage. Depuis, il veut repartir. »

    Qu’est-ce qui motive un retour au pays ? « On ne connaît pas le parcours de ces gens », reconnaît Nadira Khemliche, adjointe au chef du service voyagiste de l’OFII, qui accompagne les candidats au départ à Roissy ou à Orly, jusqu’à leur embarquement sur des vols commerciaux. Nadira Khemliche ne distingue que des profils, les Arméniens qui voyagent en famille, les Chinois qui ont des vols tous les jours, les Ethiopiens qu’elle ne croise que deux ou trois fois l’an… « Parfois, on se demande pourquoi ils veulent rentrer en sachant qu’il y a des bombes chez eux, confie-t-elle. Mais bon, ici, ils n’ont rien. » « Quel est le choix réel de ces gens ?, s’interroge Clémence Richard, en charge des questions « expulsions » à la Cimade. Ils sont à la rue, épuisés socialement, précarisés administrativement. »

    Candidatures marginales

    Pour promouvoir le retour volontaire, l’OFII se déplace sur des campements, dans des centres d’hébergement du 115 ou des centres de demandeurs d’asile dans lesquels s’éternisent des déboutés. L’office tient même des stands dans des salons « diasporiques ». Le retour volontaire donne droit à un billet d’avion et à un « pécule » dont le montant varie. Les Afghans ont actuellement droit à 1 650 euros. Un programme européen permet aussi de financer un projet de réinsertion à hauteur de 3 500 euros.

    Sur un pan de mur de son bureau, à Calais, Laura Defachel, agent du retour volontaire et de la réinsertion de l’OFII, a accroché des photos d’hommes devant des troupeaux de bêtes, dans les montagnes afghanes. « Beaucoup ont saisi l’opportunité pour se lancer dans l’élevage, ouvrir une épicerie ou un magasin de pièces détachées, devenir taxi, assure-t-elle. C’est déterminant pour ceux qui sont partis de leur pays avec la promesse de faire mieux. » Depuis deux mois, toutefois, ce programme a été suspendu, dans l’attente d’un renouvellement. En 2016, l’année du démantèlement de la « jungle », le bureau de Calais a monté plus de 500 dossiers de départs volontaires, les trois quarts en direction de l’Afghanistan et du Pakistan.

    Les candidats au départ restent toutefois marginaux. « Ce sont surtout les personnes épuisées qui ne souhaitent pas demander l’asile en France ou des personnes qui rentrent pour des raisons familiales », analyse Laura Defachel. Elle se souvient de cet homme qui a souhaité partir après la mort de son frère, qui avait fait le voyage avec lui. Il était monté à bord d’un camion et, réalisant qu’il ne prenait pas la direction de l’Angleterre, est descendu en marche. Il s’est tué sur l’autoroute.

    Warseem Mohamad Kareem rentre dans la première catégorie. « C’est Londres ou l’Afghanistan », résume-t-il. Alors qu’il s’apprête à embarquer pour un vol retour, le jeune homme de 27 ans dit avoir dépensé 11 000 dollars (9 645 euros) pour rejoindre l’Europe. Arrivé en France il y a trois mois, il s’est retrouvé dans un cul-de-sac, à Calais et à Grande-Synthe, dans des tentes ou sous un pont. Avec des passeurs afghans ou kurdes, il a tenté vingt ou trente fois de monter dans des camions pour l’Angleterre. A chaque fois, il a été attrapé par la police.

    Le froid, la pluie, la police qui le chasse tous les matins, l’échec ont finalement eu raison de sa détermination. Lors du dernier démantèlement de Grande-Synthe, il a croisé les maraudeurs de l’OFII. « Nous avons faim de paix, pas d’argent », dit-il à l’agent qui lui remet, dans la salle d’embarquement, une enveloppe de billets. Warseem ne s’interdit pas de revenir, un jour. Il semble ignorer qu’il fait l’objet d’une obligation de quitter le territoire et d’une interdiction de retour pendant un an. Une pratique que toutes les préfectures ne mettent pas en œuvre, mais que l’OFII souhaite développer pour éviter les désistements et les retours. Des méthodes « déloyales », dénonce Clémence Richard : « Cela supprime de fait le droit au désistement. En outre, ces personnes ne rentrent pas dans les catégories de la loi susceptibles de se voir prononcer une interdiction de retour, c’est illégal et ça a aussi des conséquences graves, car cela rend quasi impossible toute demande de visa ultérieure. »

    A court d’argent et d’aide

    En matière de départ volontaire, la contrainte affleure. A partir du 1er janvier 2019, dans le cadre de la loi asile et immigration votée en 2018, les agents de l’OFII iront promouvoir l’aide au retour dans les centres de rétention administrative. Partir de gré, pour ne pas risquer de partir de force. C’est peut-être le dilemme qui aurait fini par se poser à Noorullah Nori. Débouté de l’asile en Allemagne, puis en France, à court d’argent et d’aide, il a signé pour un retour en Afghanistan, après quatre ans en Europe.

    « Moi aussi l’OFII m’a proposé le retour, mais jamais je ne rentrerai », jure Karimi, un Afghan qui a accompagné Noorullah à l’aéroport, après l’avoir recueilli tandis qu’il dormait à la rue. Passé par les errances d’un « Dubliné », Karimi est désormais réfugié en France. A voix basse, il dit à propos de son compatriote : « Il a des problèmes psychologiques. Il est resté longtemps sans parler à personne, avec des pensées négatives. » Il n’est pas le seul, dans le hall de Roissy, à sembler accuser le coup. Un autre Afghan a été déposé à l’aéroport par des infirmiers hospitaliers, prenant de court les agents de l’OFII qui n’avaient pas été informés et ont dû se procurer un fauteuil roulant tandis que l’homme, apathique, laissait son regard se perdre dans le vide, immobile.

    Un Soudanais s’apprête aussi à embarquer. Son air triste intrigue deux Afghans qui veulent savoir ce qui l’accable. Salah Mohamed Yaya a 19 ans. Il dit que depuis des mois il n’a plus de traitement contre le VIH. Cela fait deux ans qu’il est en France, passé par Toulouse, Paris, Nantes, les foyers pour mineurs, la rue, l’hôpital. « Je suis devenu fou, dit-il. Je veux retourner au bled. » Salah n’a pas fait de demande d’asile, sans que l’on sache s’il a vraiment été informé qu’il pouvait le faire. La veille de son départ, il a dormi porte de Villette. Il sent encore le feu de bois.

    https://www.lemonde.fr/societe/article/2018/12/31/je-suis-devenu-fou-je-veux-retourner-au-bled_5403872_3224.html

    #retour_au_pays #réfugiés_afghans #France #Afghanistan #asile #migrations #réfugiés


  • Cartographie | Dix ans dans la vie de deux enfants sur les routes de l’exil
    https://asile.ch/2018/12/23/cartographie-dix-ans-dans-la-vie-de-deux-enfants-sur-les-routes-de-lexil

    Comment voyagent les migrants quand nous leur refusons les visas ? Hani et Hassan sont originaires de Hérat en Afghanistan. Ils avaient 12 et 14 ans lorsque leur père, un chef de guerre, a décidé de les envoyer vers l’Europe pour qu’ils puissent étudier, et espérer un avenir « un peu plus calme » et intéressant. Puisqu’il […]


  • #métaliste sur le sort réservé aux #interprètes #afghans qui ont servi les #armées occidentales et à qui on a refusé l’entrée (en vue d’un dépôt de la demande d’asile) dans les pays pour lesquels ils ont travaillé...

    #UK / #Angleterre / #USA / #Etats-Unis :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/359104

    #France :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/407223
    https://seenthis.net/messages/657028
    https://seenthis.net/messages/740385

    #reconnaissance #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Afghanistan #guerre #responsabilité


  • #Basir_Ibrahimi, ancien interprête afghan pour l’armée française, n’a pas le droit de demander asile

    Basir Ibrahimi, interprète afghan pour l’armée française entre 2011 et 2012, est menacé de mort dans son pays. En France, il est menacé d’expulsion. Ce 12 février, son avocate a demandé qu’on lui octroie le droit de faire une demande d’asile. Mais le tribunal a rejeté cette demande.

    A 30 ans, Basir Ibrahimi se trouve dans une position intenable. Dans son pays d’origine, l’Afghanistan, il est menacé de mort par les Talibans, pour avoir été interprète pour l’armée française entre 2011 et 2012. En France, le jeune homme est menacé d’expulsion. Et pourtant, Basir Ibrahimi a déjà lancé de nombreux recours.

    Ce lundi 12 février, devant le tribunal administratif de Châlons-en-Champagne, son avocate a demandé à la justice le droit, pour Basir Ibrahimi, de déposer une demande d’asile. Le simple fait de lancer cette procédure pourrait éviter à l’ancien collaborateur des forces françaises d’être expulsé. Mais 24 heures après cette audience, le tribunal a rejeté cette demande. Basir est donc toujours sous le coup de l’arrêté d’expulsion émis par la préfecture de la Marne en septembre dernier.

    Un espoir subsiste néanmoins dans ce dédale administratif : Basir a fait une demande de protection fonctionnelle auprès du ministère des Armées, qui n’a pour le moment reçu aucune réponse. En tant qu’employeur de Basir, le Ministère lui doit légalement protection, selon son avocate.

    https://france3-regions.francetvinfo.fr/grand-est/marne/chalons-en-champagne/basir-ibrahimi-ancien-interprete-afghan-armee-francaise
    #interprètes #Afghanistan #asile #migrations #réfugiés #France #armée_française

    • Le sort des anciens interprètes afghans de l’armée française en suspens

      Des ex-personnels civils pour les forces françaises, menacés de mort, ont vu leur demande de visa refusée. Leur cas est réexaminé à titre humanitaire, mais l’opération est opaque.

      La menace s’est dangereusement rapprochée un matin de 2015. Elias sortait de chez lui lorsqu’il a découvert l’inscription sur le mur de sa maison, à Kaboul, « il faut tuer les infidèles qui ont travaillé avec des étrangers ». Pour cet Afghan d’une trentaine d’années, dont on taira le vrai nom, c’est le début d’une longue course-poursuite avec femme et enfants. En deux ans, la famille déménage cinq fois. Aux yeux des talibans, Elias est un traître.

      Il fait partie des quelque 800 auxiliaires de personnels civils de recrutement local – interprètes, cuisiniers, ouvriers… – ayant travaillé pour les forces françaises lorsqu’elles étaient déployées en Afghanistan, de 2001 à 2014. Un travail bien payé– 950 dollars (834 euros) par mois, cinq fois le salaire moyen – mais qui l’oblige aujourd’hui à vivre avec la peur au ventre et le risque d’être pris pour cible à chaque instant.

      Elias vit désormais reclus chez lui, avec sa famille. « On vit comme des prisonniers, explique-t-il au Monde, par téléphone. On limite nos sorties au maximum, mais je ne sais pas si je pourrai vivre encore longtemps. » En 2015, l’administration française a refusé sa demande de visa, ainsi qu’à 151 autres personnels civils afghans, sans qu’on leur explique pourquoi. « La France nous a abandonnés », regrette-t-il.

      Les retards s’accumulent

      Lorsqu’il était candidat de la présidentielle, Emmanuel Macron avait comparé le sort de ces anciens interprètes afghans à celui des harkis en Algérie, « que nous avons abandonnés, alors qu’ils s’étaient battus dans nos rangs ». « Nous avons commis une faute comparable avec nos interprètes afghans. C’était une trahison », avait-il ajouté.


      https://www.lemonde.fr/societe/article/2018/12/10/le-sort-des-anciens-interpretes-afghans-de-l-armee-francaise-en-suspens_5395



  • US to Extract Minerals From Afghanistan to ‘Defray Cost of US Assistance’

    The U.S. military has had its eyes on Afghan mineral deposits for some time. A 2007 Pentagon memo that the New York Times quoted in a 2010 article says that Afghanistan could be the “Saudi Arabia of lithium.”

    https://www.mintpressnews.com/us-to-extract-minerals-from-afghanistan-to-defray-cost-of-us-assistance/232333

    #extractivisme #Afghanistan #USA #Etats-Unis #mines #lithium
    ping @albertocampiphoto @daphne

    Quelle belle blague! “US assistance”, comme dit @isskein sur FB: “Bastards”


  • Début de la constitution d’une #métaliste sur le sujet #migrations et #développement

    Déconstruction de l’idée : augmentation du #développement pour freiner la migration (et notamment l’émigration), en lien aussi avec la question du #codéveloppement :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/526083
    https://seenthis.net/messages/448596

    –-----------------

    Des guides/manuels/rapports qui déconstruisent les #mythes et #préjugés en lien avec migrations & développement :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/733048

    –---------------------

    Ici des liens sur aide au développement comme moyen de freiner l’immigration, mais sans pour autant être critiques sur ce sujet (#root_causes) :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/743909
    #paix #promotion_de_la_paix

    https://seenthis.net/messages/614952
    https://seenthis.net/messages/538851
    https://seenthis.net/messages/536665
    https://seenthis.net/messages/487453
    https://seenthis.net/messages/461710

    –--------------

    La question des #remittances :
    https://seenthis.net/tag/remittances
    v. notamment :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/742235

    –--------------

    Il faudra faire une longue liste du lien toujours plus étroit entre #aide_au_développement et migrations (#conditionnalité de l’aide)...
    https://seenthis.net/messages/719752
    https://seenthis.net/messages/564720
    https://seenthis.net/messages/385634
    v. aussi, même si je n’ai pas encore lu dans les détails les conditions liées à cette nouvelle enveloppe d’aide :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/741869

    Dans le documentaire (produit par Arte) « Etats africains, portiers de l’Europe » on parle aussi de conditionnalité de l’aide :
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IUSIi-qP2pY

    https://seenthis.net/messages/691948
    https://seenthis.net/messages/660235
    https://seenthis.net/messages/647177
    https://seenthis.net/messages/641888
    https://seenthis.net/messages/633324
    https://seenthis.net/messages/528689
    #Afghanistan

    –---------------

    Et l’opacité des fonds pour le développement, qui, en réalité, sont utilisés en grande mesure pour fermer les frontières :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/641297
    https://seenthis.net/messages/580567
    #fonds_fiduciaire_d’urgence #trust_fund #fonds_pour_l'afrique
    https://seenthis.net/messages/601336
    https://seenthis.net/messages/550025
    https://seenthis.net/messages/423516

    –---------------------

    Et sur la part croissante du budget des Etats consacrée aux dépenses en matière de #contrôles_frontaliers au détriment des fonds pour le développement
    https://seenthis.net/messages/608653

    –-------------------

    Liens sur les budgets nationaux (européens) de la #coopération_internationale au développement et le fait que dans ce budget les frais d’#accueil des #réfugiés et #demandeurs_d'asile sur le territoire y est inclus :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/480592
    https://seenthis.net/messages/430853
    https://seenthis.net/messages/388606
    #coopération_au_développement

    –-------------------------

    Quand les Etats financent, via l’aide au développement aussi, des dictateurs...
    Erythrée :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/405308
    https://seenthis.net/messages/318425
    Mais il y a aussi du matériel sur cette métaliste en lien avec l’#externalisation :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/731749

    –----------------------

    Une synthèse graphique de @reka :


    https://seenthis.net/messages/311344

    #ressources_pédagogiques

    ping @isskein @_kg_


  • Dernier rapport de « Inspector General for #Afghanistan Reconstruction » (SIGAR) : les #talibans, les trafiquants de drogue et les contractuels privés des #Etats-Unis ne se sont jamais aussi bien portés

    The Taliban is stronger now than at any time since Afghanistan war
    https://www.alaraby.co.uk/english/news/2018/11/1/afghan-forces-losing-kabul-control-to-taliban-us-watchdog

    “From the period of May 1 to the most current data as of October 1, 2018, the average number of casualties the (Afghan forces) suffered is the greatest it has ever been during like periods,” it said. 

    The report also noted that “the Taliban now controls more territory than at any time since 2001”.

    Afghanistan : le contrôle des autorités au plus bas depuis 2015, selon un rapport - L’Orient-Le Jour
    https://www.lorientlejour.com/article/1141602/afghanistan-le-controle-des-autorites-au-plus-bas-depuis-2015-selon-u

    Military contractor received $1.6 billion to advise Afghans but results unknown | Ottawa Citizen
    https://ottawacitizen.com/news/national/defence-watch/military-contractor-received-1-6-billion-to-advise-afghans-but-result

    The Afghan mission continues to be a money pit for the U.S. government and a cash cow for private military contractors. On Wednesday, the U.S. government’s Afghan mission watchdog produced a report on the Pentagon program to advise the Afghan Ministry of Defence (MOD) and the Afghan Ministry of the Interior (MOI).

    Afghanistan : un rapport déplore le cuisant échec de Washington dans la lutte contre l’opium — RT en français
    https://francais.rt.com/international/55077-afghanistan-rapport-denonce-retentissant-echec-washington-dans-lu

    Washington a dépensé 8,8 milliards de dollars depuis 2002 contre le trafic de drogue, selon un organisme public américain. Résultat ? La production d’opium a connu un essor rapide, permettant aux talibans de tenir tête à Kaboul.


  • The Vulnerability Contest

    Traumatized Afghan child soldiers who were forced to fight in Syria struggle to find protection in Europe’s asylum lottery.

    Mosa did not choose to come forward. Word had spread among the thousands of asylum seekers huddled inside Moria that social workers were looking for lone children among the general population. High up on the hillside, in the Afghan area of the chaotic refugee camp on the Greek island of Lesbos, some residents knew someone they suspected was still a minor. They led the aid workers to Mosa.

    The boy, whose broad and beardless face mark him out as a member of the Hazara ethnic group, had little reason to trust strangers. It was hard to persuade him just to sit with them and listen. Like many lone children, Mosa had slipped through the age assessment carried out on first arrival at Moria: He was registered as 27 years old. With the help of a translator, the social worker explained that there was still time to challenge his classification as an adult. But Mosa did not seem to be able to engage with what he was being told. It would take weeks to establish trust and reveal his real age and background.

    Most new arrivals experience shock when their hopes of a new life in Europe collide with Moria, the refugee camp most synonymous with the miserable consequences of Europe’s efforts to contain the flow of refugees and migrants across the Aegean. When it was built, the camp was meant to provide temporary shelter for fewer than 2,000 people. Since the European Union struck a deal in March 2016 with Turkey under which new arrivals are confined to Greece’s islands, Moria’s population has swollen to 9,000. It has become notorious for overcrowding, snowbound tents, freezing winter deaths, violent protests and suicides by adults and children alike.

    While all asylum systems are subjective, he said that the situation on Greece’s islands has turned the search for protection into a “lottery.”

    Stathis Poularakis is a lawyer who previously served for two years on an appeal committee dealing with asylum cases in Greece and has worked extensively on Lesbos. While all asylum systems are subjective, he said that the situation on Greece’s islands has turned the search for protection into a “lottery.”

    Asylum claims on Lesbos can take anywhere between six months and more than two years to be resolved. In the second quarter of 2018, Greece faced nearly four times as many asylum claims per capita as Germany. The E.U. has responded by increasing the presence of the European Asylum Support Office (EASO) and broadening its remit so that EASO officials can conduct asylum interviews. But the promises that EASO will bring Dutch-style efficiency conceal the fact that the vast majority of its hires are not seconded from other member states but drawn from the same pool of Greeks as the national asylum service.

    Asylum caseworkers at Moria face an overwhelming backlog and plummeting morale. A serving EASO official describes extraordinary “pressure to go faster” and said there was “so much subjectivity in the system.” The official also said that it was human nature to reject more claims “when you see every other country is closing its borders.”

    Meanwhile, the only way to escape Moria while your claim is being processed is to be recognized as a “vulnerable” case. Vulnerables get permission to move to the mainland or to more humane accommodation elsewhere on the island. The term is elastic and can apply to lone children and women, families or severely physically or mentally ill people. In all cases the onus is on the asylum seeker ultimately to persuade the asylum service, Greek doctors or the United Nations Refugee Agency that they are especially vulnerable.

    The ensuing scramble to get out of Moria has turned the camp into a vast “vulnerability contest,” said Poularakis. It is a ruthless competition that the most heavily traumatized are often in no condition to understand, let alone win.

    Twice a Refugee

    Mosa arrived at Moria in October 2017 and spent his first night in Europe sleeping rough outside the arrivals tent. While he slept someone stole his phone. When he awoke he was more worried about the lost phone than disputing the decision of the Frontex officer who registered him as an adult. Poularakis said age assessors are on the lookout for adults claiming to be children, but “if you say you’re an adult, no one is going to object.”

    Being a child has never afforded Mosa any protection in the past: He did not understand that his entire future could be at stake. Smugglers often warn refugee children not to reveal their real age, telling them that they will be prevented from traveling further if they do not pretend to be over 18 years old.

    Like many other Hazara of his generation, Mosa was born in Iran, the child of refugees who fled Afghanistan. Sometimes called “the cursed people,” the Hazara are followers of Shia Islam and an ethnic and religious minority in Afghanistan, a country whose wars are usually won by larger ethnic groups and followers of Sunni Islam. Their ancestry, traced by some historians to Genghis Khan, also means they are highly visible and have been targets for persecution by Afghan warlords from 19th-century Pashtun kings to today’s Taliban.

    In recent decades, millions of Hazara have fled Afghanistan, many of them to Iran, where their language, Dari, is a dialect of Persian Farsi, the country’s main language.

    “We had a life where we went from work to home, which were both underground in a basement,” he said. “There was nothing (for us) like strolling the streets. I was trying not to be seen by anyone. I ran from the police like I would from a street dog.”

    Iran hosts 950,000 Afghan refugees who are registered with the U.N. and another 1.5 million undocumented Afghans. There are no official refugee camps, making displaced Afghans one of the largest urban refugee populations in the world. For those without the money to pay bribes, there is no route to permanent residency or citizenship. Most refugees survive without papers on the outskirts of cities such as the capital, Tehran. Those who received permits, before Iran stopped issuing them altogether in 2007, must renew them annually. The charges are unpredictable and high. Mostly, the Afghan Hazara survive as an underclass, providing cheap labor in workshops and constructions sites. This was how Mosa grew up.

    “We had a life where we went from work to home, which were both underground in a basement,” he said. “There was nothing (for us) like strolling the streets. I was trying not to be seen by anyone. I ran from the police like I would from a street dog.”

    But he could not remain invisible forever and one day in October 2016, on his way home from work, he was detained by police for not having papers.

    Sitting in one of the cantinas opposite the entrance to Moria, Mosa haltingly explained what happened next. How he was threatened with prison in Iran or deportation to Afghanistan, a country in which he has never set foot. How he was told that that the only way out was to agree to fight in Syria – for which they would pay him and reward him with legal residence in Iran.

    “In Iran, you have to pay for papers,” said Mosa. “If you don’t pay, you don’t have papers. I do not know Afghanistan. I did not have a choice.”

    As he talked, Mosa spread out a sheaf of papers from a battered plastic wallet. Along with asylum documents was a small notepad decorated with pink and mauve elephants where he keeps the phone numbers of friends and family. It also contains a passport-sized green booklet with the crest of the Islamic Republic of Iran. It is a temporary residence permit. Inside its shiny cover is the photograph of a scared-looking boy, whom the document claims was born 27 years ago. It is the only I.D. he has ever owned and the date of birth has been faked to hide the fact that the country that issues it has been sending children to war.

    Mosa is not alone among the Hazara boys who have arrived in Greece seeking protection, carrying identification papers with inflated ages. Refugees Deeply has documented the cases of three Hazara child soldiers and corroborated their accounts with testimony from two other underage survivors. Their stories are of childhoods twice denied: once in Syria, where they were forced to fight, and then again after fleeing to Europe, where they are caught up in a system more focused on hard borders than on identifying the most damaged and vulnerable refugees.

    From Teenage Kicks to Adult Nightmares

    Karim’s descent into hell began with a prank. Together with a couple of friends, he recorded an angsty song riffing on growing up as a Hazara teenager in Tehran. Made when he was 16 years old, the song was meant to be funny. His band did not even have a name. The boys uploaded the track on a local file-sharing platform in 2014 and were as surprised as anyone when it was downloaded thousands of times. But after the surprise came a creeping sense of fear. Undocumented Afghan refugee families living in Tehran usually try to avoid drawing attention to themselves. Karim tried to have the song deleted, but after two months there was a knock on the door. It was the police.

    “I asked them how they found me,” he said. “I had no documents but they knew where I lived.”

    Already estranged from his family, the teenager was transported from his life of working in a pharmacy and staying with friends to life in a prison outside the capital. After two weeks inside, he was given three choices: to serve a five-year sentence; to be deported to Afghanistan; or to redeem himself by joining the Fatemiyoun.

    According to Iranian propaganda, the Fatemiyoun are Afghan volunteers deployed to Syria to protect the tomb of Zainab, the granddaughter of the Prophet Mohammad. In reality, the Fatemiyoun Brigade is a unit of Iran’s powerful Revolutionary Guard, drawn overwhelmingly from Hazara communities, and it has fought in Iraq and Yemen, as well as Syria. Some estimates put its full strength at 15,000, which would make it the second-largest foreign force in support of the Assad regime, behind the Lebanese militia group Hezbollah.

    Karim was told he would be paid and given a one-year residence permit during leave back in Iran. Conscripts are promised that if they are “martyred,” their family will receive a pension and permanent status. “I wasn’t going to Afghanistan and I wasn’t going to prison,” said Karim. So he found himself forced to serve in the #Fatemiyoun.

    His first taste of the new life came when he was transferred to a training base outside Tehran, where the recruits, including other children, were given basic weapons training and religious indoctrination. They marched, crawled and prayed under the brigade’s yellow flag with a green arch, crossed by assault rifles and a Koranic phrase: “With the Help of God.”

    “Imagine me at 16,” said Karim. “I have no idea how to kill a bird. They got us to slaughter animals to get us ready. First, they prepare your brain to kill.”

    The 16-year-old’s first deployment was to Mosul in Iraq, where he served four months. When he was given leave back in Iran, Karim was told that to qualify for his residence permit he would need to serve a second term, this time in Syria. They were first sent into the fight against the so-called Islamic State in Raqqa. Because of his age and physique, Karim and some of the other underage soldiers were moved to the medical corps. He said that there were boys as young as 14 and he remembers a 15-year-old who fought using a rocket-propelled grenade launcher.

    “One prisoner was killed by being hung by his hair from a tree. They cut off his fingers one by one and cauterized the wounds with gunpowder.”

    “I knew nothing about Syria. I was just trying to survive. They were making us hate ISIS, dehumanizing them. Telling us not to leave one of them alive.” Since media reports revealed the existence of the Fatemiyoun, the brigade has set up a page on Facebook. Among pictures of “proud volunteers,” it shows stories of captured ISIS prisoners being fed and cared for. Karim recalls a different story.

    “One prisoner was killed by being hung by his hair from a tree. They cut off his fingers one by one and cauterized the wounds with gunpowder.”

    The casualties on both sides were overwhelming. At the al-Razi hospital in Aleppo, the young medic saw the morgue overwhelmed with bodies being stored two or three to a compartment. Despite promises to reward the families of martyrs, Karim said many of the bodies were not sent back to Iran.

    Mosa’s basic training passed in a blur. A shy boy whose parents had divorced when he was young and whose father became an opium addict, he had always shrunk from violence. He never wanted to touch the toy guns that other boys played with. Now he was being taught to break down, clean and fire an assault rifle.

    The trainees were taken three times a day to the imam, who preached to them about their holy duty and the iniquities of ISIS, often referred to as Daesh.

    “They told us that Daesh was the same but worse than the Taliban,” said Mosa. “I didn’t listen to them. I didn’t go to Syria by choice. They forced me to. I just needed the paper.”

    Mosa was born in 2001. Before being deployed to Syria, the recruits were given I.D. tags and papers that deliberately overstated their age: In 2017, Human Rights Watch released photographs of the tombstones of eight Afghan children who had died in Syria and whose families identified them as having been under 18 years old. The clerk who filled out Mosa’s forms did not trouble himself with complex math: He just changed 2001 to 1991. Mosa was one of four underage soldiers in his group. The boys were scared – their hands shook so hard they kept dropping their weapons. Two of them were dead within days of reaching the front lines.

    “I didn’t even know where we were exactly, somewhere in the mountains in a foreign country. I was scared all the time. Every time I saw a friend dying in front of my eyes I was thinking I would be next,” said Mosa.

    He has flashbacks of a friend who died next to him after being shot in the face by a sniper. After the incident, he could not sleep for four nights. The worst, he said, were the sudden raids by ISIS when they would capture Fatemiyoun fighters: “God knows what happened to them.”

    Iran does not release figures on the number of Fatemiyoun casualties. In a rare interview earlier this year, a senior officer in the Iranian Revolutionary Guard suggested as many as 1,500 Fatemiyoun had been killed in Syria. In Mashhad, an Iranian city near the border with Afghanistan where the brigade was first recruited, video footage has emerged of families demanding the bodies of their young men believed to have died in Syria. Mosa recalls patrols in Syria where 150 men and boys would go out and only 120 would return.

    Escaping Syria

    Abbas had two weeks left in Syria before going back to Iran on leave. After 10 weeks in what he describes as a “living hell,” he had begun to believe he might make it out alive. It was his second stint in Syria and, still only 17 years old, he had been chosen to be a paramedic, riding in the back of a 2008 Chevrolet truck converted into a makeshift ambulance.

    He remembers thinking that the ambulance and the hospital would have to be better than the bitter cold of the front line. His abiding memory from then was the sound of incoming 120mm shells. “They had a special voice,” Abbas said. “And when you hear it, you must lie down.”

    Following 15 days of nursing training, during which he was taught how to find a vein and administer injections, he was now an ambulance man, collecting the dead and wounded from the battlefields on which the Fatemiyoun were fighting ISIS.

    Abbas grew up in Ghazni in Afghanistan, but his childhood ended when his father died from cancer in 2013. Now the provider for the family, he traveled with smugglers across the border into Iran, to work for a tailor in Tehran who had known his father. He worked without documents and faced the same threats as the undocumented Hazara children born in Iran. Even more dangerous were the few attempts he made to return to Ghazni. The third time he attempted to hop the border he was captured by Iranian police.

    Abbas was packed onto a transport, along with 23 other children, and sent to Ordugah-i Muhaceran, a camplike detention center outside Mashhad. When they got there the Shia Hazara boys were separated from Sunni Pashtuns, Afghanistan’s largest ethnic group, who were pushed back across the border. Abbas was given the same choice as Karim and Mosa before him: Afghanistan or Syria. Many of the other forced recruits Abbas met in training, and later fought alongside in Syria, were addicts with a history of substance abuse.

    Testimony from three Fatemiyoun child soldiers confirmed that Tramadol was routinely used by recruits to deaden their senses, leaving them “feeling nothing” even in combat situations but, nonetheless, able to stay awake for days at a time.

    The Fatemiyoun officers dealt with withdrawal symptoms by handing out Tramadol, an opioid painkiller that is used to treat back pain but sometimes abused as a cheap alternative to methadone. The drug is a slow-release analgesic. Testimony from three Fatemiyoun child soldiers confirmed that it was routinely used by recruits to deaden their senses, leaving them “feeling nothing” even in combat situations but, nonetheless, able to stay awake for days at a time. One of the children reiterated that the painkiller meant he felt nothing. Users describe feeling intensely thirsty but say they avoid drinking water because it triggers serious nausea and vomiting. Tramadol is addictive and prolonged use can lead to insomnia and seizures.

    Life in the ambulance had not met Abbas’ expectations. He was still sent to the front line, only now it was to collect the dead and mutilated. Some soldiers shot themselves in the feet to escape the conflict.

    “We picked up people with no feet and no hands. Some of them were my friends,” Abbas said. “One man was in small, small pieces. We collected body parts I could not recognize and I didn’t know if they were Syrian or Iranian or Afghan. We just put them in bags.”

    Abbas did not make it to the 12th week. One morning, driving along a rubble-strewn road, his ambulance collided with an anti-tank mine. Abbas’ last memory of Syria is seeing the back doors of the vehicle blasted outward as he was thrown onto the road.

    When he awoke he was in a hospital bed in Iran. He would later learn that the Syrian ambulance driver had been killed and that the other Afghan medic in the vehicle had lost both his legs. At the time, his only thought was to escape.

    The Toll on Child Soldiers

    Alice Roorda first came into contact with child soldiers in 2001 in the refugee camps of Sierra Leone in West Africa. A child psychologist, she was sent there by the United Kingdom-based charity War Child. She was one of three psychologists for a camp of more than 5,000 heavily traumatized survivors of one of West Africa’s more brutal conflicts.

    “There was almost nothing we could do,” she admitted.

    The experience, together with later work in Uganda, has given her a deep grounding in the effects of war and post-conflict trauma on children. She said prolonged exposure to conflict zones has physical as well as psychological effects.

    “If you are chronically stressed, as in a war zone, you have consistently high levels of the two basic stress hormones: adrenaline and cortisol.”

    Even after reaching a calmer situation, the “stress baseline” remains high, she said. This impacts everything from the immune system to bowel movements. Veterans often suffer from complications related to the continual engagement of the psoas, or “fear muscle” – the deepest muscles in the body’s core, which connect the spine, through the pelvis, to the femurs.

    “With prolonged stress you start to see the world around you as more dangerous.” The medial prefrontal cortex, the section of the brain that interprets threat levels, is also affected, said Roorda. This part of the brain is sometimes called the “watchtower.”

    “When your watchtower isn’t functioning well you see everything as more dangerous. You are on high alert. This is not a conscious response; it is because the stress is already so close to the surface.”

    Psychological conditions that can be expected to develop include post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Left untreated, these stress levels can lead to physical symptoms ranging from chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS or ME) to high blood pressure or irritable bowel syndrome. Also common are heightened sensitivity to noise and insomnia.

    The trauma of war can also leave children frozen at the point when they were traumatized. “Their life is organized as if the trauma is still ongoing,” said Roorda. “It is difficult for them to take care of themselves, to make rational well informed choices, and to trust people.”

    The starting point for any treatment of child soldiers, said Roorda, is a calm environment. They need to release the tension with support groups and physical therapy, she said, and “a normal bedtime.”

    The Dutch psychologist, who is now based in Athens, acknowledged that what she is describing is the exact opposite of the conditions at #Moria.

    Endgame

    Karim is convinced that his facility for English has saved his life. While most Hazara boys arrive in Europe speaking only Farsi, Karim had taught himself some basic English before reaching Greece. As a boy in Tehran he had spent hours every day trying to pick up words and phrases from movies that he watched with subtitles on his phone. His favorite was The Godfather, which he said he must have seen 25 times. He now calls English his “safe zone” and said he prefers it to Farsi.

    When Karim reached Greece in March 2016, new arrivals were not yet confined to the islands. No one asked him if he was a child or an adult. He paid smugglers to help him escape Iran while on leave from Syria and after crossing through Turkey landed on Chios. Within a day and a half, he had passed through the port of Piraeus and reached Greece’s northern border with Macedonia, at Idomeni.

    When he realized the border was closed, he talked to some of the international aid workers who had come to help at the makeshift encampment where tens of thousands of refugees and migrants waited for a border that would not reopen. They ended up hiring him as a translator. Two years on, his English is now much improved and Karim has worked for a string of international NGOs and a branch of the Greek armed forces, where he was helped to successfully apply for asylum.

    The same job has also brought him to Moria. He earns an above-average salary for Greece and at first he said that his work on Lesbos is positive: “I’m not the only one who has a shitty background. It balances my mind to know that I’m not the only one.”

    But then he admits that it is difficult hearing and interpreting versions of his own life story from Afghan asylum seekers every day at work. He has had problems with depression and suffered flashbacks, “even though I’m in a safe country now.”

    Abbas got the help he needed to win the vulnerability contest. After he was initially registered as an adult, his age assessment was overturned and he was transferred from Moria to a shelter for children on Lesbos. He has since been moved again to a shelter in mainland Greece. While he waits to hear the decision on his protection status, Abbas – like other asylum seekers in Greece – receives 150 euros ($170) a month. This amount needs to cover all his expenses, from food and clothing to phone credit. The money is not enough to cover a regular course of the antidepressant Prozac and the sleeping pills he was prescribed by the psychiatrist he was able to see on Lesbos.

    “I save them for when it gets really bad,” he said.

    Since moving to the mainland he has been hospitalized once with convulsions, but his main worry is the pain in his groin. Abbas underwent a hernia operation in Iran, the result of injuries sustained as a child lifting adult bodies into the ambulance. He has been told that he will need to wait for four months to see a doctor in Greece who can tell him if he needs another operation.

    “I would like to go back to school,” he said. But in reality, Abbas knows that he will need to work and there is little future for an Afghan boy who can no longer lift heavy weights.

    Walking into an Afghan restaurant in downtown Athens – near Victoria Square, where the people smugglers do business – Abbas is thrilled to see Farsi singers performing on the television above the door. “I haven’t been in an Afghan restaurant for maybe three years,” he said to explain his excitement. His face brightens again when he catches sight of Ghormeh sabzi, a herb stew popular in Afghanistan and Iran that reminds him of his mother. “I miss being with them,” he said, “being among my family.”

    When the dish arrives he pauses before eating, taking out his phone and carefully photographing the plate from every angle.

    Mosa is about to mark the end of a full year in Moria. He remains in the same drab tent that reminds him every day of Syria. Serious weight loss has made his long limbs – the ones that made it easier for adults to pretend he was not a child – almost comically thin. His skin is laced with scars, but he refuses to go into detail about how he got them. Mosa has now turned 18 and seems to realize that his best chance of getting help may have gone.

    “Those people who don’t have problems, they give them vulnerability (status),” he said with evident anger. “If you tell them the truth, they don’t help you.”

    Then he apologises for the flash of temper. “I get upset and angry and my body shakes,” he said.

    Mosa explained that now when he gets angry he has learned to remove himself: “Sometimes I stuff my ears with toilet paper to make it quiet.”

    It is 10 months since Mosa had his asylum interview. The questions he expected about his time in the Fatemiyoun never came up. Instead, the interviewers asked him why he had not stayed in Turkey after reaching that country, having run away while on leave in Iran.

    The questions they did ask him point to his likely rejection and deportation. Why, he was asked, was his fear of being persecuted in Afghanistan credible? He told them that he has heard from other Afghan boys that police and security services in the capital, Kabul, were arresting ex-combatants from Syria.

    Like teenagers everywhere, many of the younger Fatemiyoun conscripts took selfies in Syria and posted them on Facebook or shared them on WhatsApp. The images, which include uniforms and insignia, can make him a target for Sunni reprisals. These pictures now haunt him as much as the faces of his dead comrades.

    Meanwhile, the fate he suffered two tours in Syria to avoid now seems to be the most that Europe can offer him. Without any of his earlier anger, he said, “I prefer to kill myself here than go to Afghanistan.”

    #enfants-soldats #syrie #réfugiés #asile #migrations #guerre #conflit #réfugiés_afghans #Afghanistan #ISIS #EI #Etat_islamique #trauma #traumatisme #vulnérabilité

    ping @isskein


  • Afghan, Pakistani forces clash over border fence

    Afghan and Pakistani border forces engaged in an armed clash over building a fence along the #Durand_Line on Sunday, local officials in southern Kandahar province said.

    Kandahar police spokesman, Zia Durani, told Pajhwok Afghan News that Pakistani forces tried this afternoon to fence a part of the Durand Line in Shorabak district of Kandahar, but Afghan border forces prevented their move.

    He said Pakistani forces in response attacked the Afghan forces and the clash was still underway. No one has so far been hurt in the battle. However, Pakistan closed down the friendship gate in #Spin_Boldak.

    A day earlier, Kandahar police chief, Gen. Abdul Raziq, said they had stopped Pakistan from fencing the Durand Line.

    He said that Pakistan started fencing the Durand Line in the southern region of the country but they stopped them.

    “Two weeks back, Pakistani forces started installation of fence on the border between Spin Boldak and #Shorabak districts of #Kandahar but border forces removed the fence and prevented them from doing so,” Raziq added.

    A year back, Afghan and Pakistani forces engaged in heavy clashes over fence installation in #Luqman and #Jahangir areas of Spin Boldak district and both the sides suffered casualties.

    Luqman and Jahangir areas are located in the zero point area of the border and they belong to Spin Boldak district.

    Pakistan forces last year conducted a population registration process in the two areas and claimed the areas belonged to Pakistan, but Afghan forces prevented them.

    The Afghan forces’ interference last year led to a fierce clash that continued for several hours, with both sides sustaining heavy casualties.

    After the clash, Afghanistan port with Pakistan was closed for 23 days that caused millions of afghanis losses to traders.


    https://www.pajhwok.com/en/2018/10/14/afghan-pakistani-forces-clash-over-border-fence
    #Pakistan #Afghanistan #murs #barrières_frontalières #frontières #disputes_frontalières

    #Ligne_durand:


    https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ligne_Durand


  • “If the water finishes, we will leave”: Drought is forcing hundreds of thousands of Afghans from their homes

    Afghanistan is besieged by decades of conflict, but more people this year have been displaced by drought than war.

    The severe drought has dried up riverbeds and water sources, withered crops, and forced 250,000 people from their homes.

    Journalist Stefanie Glinski spent a week between Herat and Badghis – two of the hardest-hit provinces in western Afghanistan. As these images show, she found parched fields, abandoned homes, and families struggling to cope.

    In the barren hills of Badghis, a gravel road winds through a dusty landscape, where wells and rivers have dried up completely.

    As desperation rises, some families have turned to selling off their daughters, through child marriage, in order to pay off swelling debt.

    Tens of thousands have fled to urban centres, living under simple tents. Available water, food, and healthcare fall far short of what’s needed. Aid groups have stepped in with limited emergency aid, but they acknowledge it hasn’t been enough to reach all the estimated 1.4 million people who require help.

    The Famine Early Warning Systems Network, which tracks food security around the world, is warning of more difficulties ahead: it predicts that the combination of a stumbling economy, instability, and failing crops will increase the need for food aid into next year.

    In remote Qapchiq, a village in Badghis’ Abkamari district, community leader Saskidad says his family has already lost their entire harvest.

    This year’s drought, he says, is “the worst I’ve ever seen”.

    https://www.irinnews.org/photo-feature/2018/10/04/if-water-finishes-we-will-leave-drought-forcing-hundreds-thousands-afghans
    #sécheresse #Afghanistan #eau #migrations #réfugiés #asile #réfugiés_environnementaux #désertification

    #photographie
    cc @albertocampiphoto



  • How Jimmy Carter and I Started the Mujahideen » Counterpunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names
    http://archive.is/VH3r#selection-801.1-919.214

    January 15, 1998

    by Alexander Cockburn And Jeffrey St. Clair

    Q: The former director of the CIA, Robert Gates, stated in his memoirs ["From the Shadows"], that American intelligence services began to aid the Mujahadeen in Afghanistan 6 months before the Soviet intervention. In this period you were the national security adviser to President Carter. You therefore played a role in this affair. Is that correct?

    Brzezinski: Yes. According to the official version of history, CIA aid to the Mujahadeen began during 1980, that is to say, after the Soviet army invaded Afghanistan, 24 Dec 1979. But the reality, secretly guarded until now, is completely otherwise: Indeed, it was July 3, 1979 that President Carter signed the first directive for secret aid to the opponents of the pro-Soviet regime in Kabul. And that very day, I wrote a note to the president in which I explained to him that in my opinion this aid was going to induce a Soviet military intervention.

    Q: Despite this risk, you were an advocate of this covert action. But perhaps you yourself desired this Soviet entry into war and looked to provoke it?

    Brzezinski: It isn’t quite that. We didn’t push the Russians to intervene, but we knowingly increased the probability that they would.

    Q: When the Soviets justified their intervention by asserting that they intended to fight against a secret involvement of the United States in Afghanistan, people didn’t believe them. However, there was a basis of truth. You don’t regret anything today?

    Brzezinski: Regret what? That secret operation was an excellent idea. It had the effect of drawing the Russians into the Afghan trap and you want me to regret it? The day that the Soviets officially crossed the border, I wrote to President Carter: We now have the opportunity of giving to the USSR its Vietnam war. Indeed, for almost 10 years, Moscow had to carry on a war unsupportable by the government, a conflict that brought about the demoralization and finally the breakup of the Soviet empire.

    Q: And neither do you regret having supported the Islamic [integrisme], having given arms and advice to future terrorists?

    Brzezinski: What is most important to the history of the world? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet empire? Some stirred-up Moslems or the liberation of Central Europe and the end of the cold war?

    Q: Some stirred-up Moslems? But it has been said and repeated: Islamic fundamentalism represents a world menace today.

    Brzezinski: Nonsense! It is said that the West had a global policy in regard to Islam. That is stupid. There isn’t a global Islam. Look at Islam in a rational manner and without demagoguery or emotion. It is the leading religion of the world with 1.5 billion followers. But what is there in common among Saudi Arabian fundamentalism, moderate Morocco, Pakistan militarism, Egyptian pro-Western or Central Asian secularism? Nothing more than what unites the Christian countries.

    * There are at least two editions of this magazine; with the perhaps sole exception of the Library of Congress, the version sent to the United States is shorter than the French version, and the Brzezinski interview was not included in the shorter version.
    The above has been translated from the French by Bill Blum author of the indispensible, “Killing Hope: US Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II” and “Rogue State: A Guide to the World’s Only Superpower”

    #Afghanistan #USA #URSS #histoire


  • Afghan father who sought refuge in UK ’shot dead by Taliban’ after being deported by Home Office.
    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/zainadin-fazlie-deport-home-office-taliban-afghanistan-shot-dead-refu

    An Afghan man who sought refuge from the Taliban in the UK has been shot dead in his home town after being deported by the British government.

    Zainadin Fazlie had lived in London with his wife, who had refugee status, and their four British-born children. But after committing a number of minor offences, the 47-year-old was sent back to Afghanistan after 16 years in Britain, despite threats to his life.

    Last Friday, his wife Samira Fazlie found out he had been shot by Taliban forces after seeing an image of his dead body on Facebook.
    The 34-year-old told The Independent: “When I first heard, I felt like I had to stop living. When I saw that picture, I couldn’t even move from my bed. For three nights I didn’t sleep.

    “My eldest son was crying at my feet. He said mum, I didn’t know my dad was going to die. He said I can’t believe they sent my dad to the country where he was going to be killed by these people.


  • Après des décennies au Pakistan, des réfugiés afghans se préparent au retour en Afghanistan

    Le Pakistan cherche à rapatrier vers l’Afghanistan des réfugiés afghans parmi 1,6 million au total qui vivent dans le pays. Le HCR a réservé des fonds pour le rapatriement de 60 000 réfugiés.

    Des familles sont installées, silencieuses. De jeunes enfants se promènent entre les chaises. Ils vont rentrer chez eux en Afghanistan, alors que certains d’entre eux vivent au Pakistan depuis plusieurs décennies. Et ils rentreront chez eux à titre définitif.

    Ce sont des réfugiés afghans et la scène se déroule au Centre de rapatriement volontaire de Peshawar, qui est géré par le HCR, l’Agence des Nations Unies pour les réfugiés.

    Payenda Bibi Shahnaz est installée dans un fauteuil roulant. Son mari Shamamud dans un autre. Cela fait 33 ans qu’ils ont trouvé refuge au Pakistan, mais ils rentrent également en Afghanistan avec leurs deux fils qui s’occuperont d’eux.

    Le HCR les aidera également une fois qu’ils seront rentrés au pays.

    « Je n’ai simplement pas les moyens de payer le coût de mon traitement médical ici », explique-t-elle. « Nous n’avons pas le choix. »

    Le Haut Commissaire des Nations Unies pour les réfugiés Filippo Grandi a eu l’occasion de faire leur connaissance aujourd’hui pendant sa visite au Centre et il leur a souhaité bonne chance. Le HCR apporte également une aide de 200 dollars aux rapatriés destinée à couvrir leurs dépenses initiales de voyage et de logement.

    Le gouvernement du Pakistan met en oeuvre une politique concertée de rapatriement pour beaucoup parmi presque un million de réfugiés qui vivent dans la région de Peshawar. Le HCR a réservé des fonds pour le rapatriement de 60 000 réfugiés.

    Mais depuis le début de l’année, le nombre de réfugiés qui a passé la frontière de manière définitive dépasse tout juste 6000 personnes.

    Pour nombre d’entre eux, le moment de rendre leur carte de réfugié au Pakistan est chargé d’émotions. Les élèves sont souvent en larmes, car ils se disent qu’ils ne reverront jamais leurs amis.

    La pression économique est ce qui les pousse le plus au retour.

    Qudsia a 40 ans et elle a quatre enfants. Elle était elle-même un enfant quand elle est arrivée au Pakistan. Et aujourd’hui son mari et elle ont décidé de rentrer.

    « Nous avons décidé de rentrer, parce que c’est très cher ici. Nous avons beaucoup de problèmes. Mon mari est diabétique et on ne trouve pas de travail ici. »

    Mais ils sont bien plus nombreux à décider de rester. Au cours de la ‘shura’, la réunion de la communauté, ils ont expliqué à Filippo Grandi qu’ils restent au Pakistan à cause des opportunités que le pays offre sur le plan de l’éducation et de l’économie. Ils ont également évoqué leur crainte de la violence qui règne dans leur pays. Quelque 31 des 34 provinces que compte l’Afghanistan ont été le théâtre de conflits ces derniers mois.

    La carte PoR (Proof of Registration) de Preuve d’enregistrement au Pakistan est également cause de souci majeur. Toutes ces cartes arrivent à échéance le 30 juin. Sans ces cartes, les réfugiés sont passibles d’arrestation, voire même d’expulsion. Filippo Grandi a confirmé qu’il avait instamment demandé au Pakistan de proroger la validité des cartes. La décision sera prise par l’exécutif du Pakistan.

    Filippo Grandi a expliqué aux réfugiés qu’il comprenait leurs craintes et leurs inquiétudes par rapport au fait que 200 dollars ne suffisent pas à se réinstaller dans un pays peu sûr.

    « J’ai entendu les participants de la Shura », a-t-il déclaré. « Nous allons très bientôt augmenter l’indemnité de rapatriement. Nous allons œuvrer pour améliorer les conditions de retour des rapatriés. J’en ai parlé avec les dirigeants du gouvernement afghan. »

    Il a parlé de sa rencontre avec le Président afghan Ashraf Ghani. Le Président lui a confirmé qu’il a demandé un inventaire des terrains disponibles appartenant au gouvernement. Il s’agirait de mettre en place un programme de réinstallation des réfugiés similaire au programme pilote de Hérat en faveur des personnes déplacées à l’intérieur du pays.

    Comme pour les personnes déplacées à Hérat, il s’agirait d’attribuer aux réfugiés des terrains à bâtir. L’eau et l’électricité seraient fournies.

    Filippo Grandi a aussi abordé les préoccupations des réfugiés qui craignent de servir de boucs émissaires après des attaques ou des incidents violents le long de la frontière pakistano-afghane.

    « J’ai bien entendu ce que vous dites. Les réfugiés ne sont pas des terroristes. Je suis tout à fait d’accord. »

    Il a déclaré qu’en s’adressant aux dirigeants du gouvernement du Pakistan, il avait souligné qu’on ne pouvait mettre en cause ou pénaliser toute la population de réfugiés quand de tels événements se produisaient.


    http://www.unhcr.org/fr/news/stories/2016/6/576d401ea/apres-decennies-pakistan-refugies-afghans-preparent-retour-afghanistan.html

    #Pakistan #réfugiés_afghans #Afghanistan #réfugiés #asile #migrations #retour_au_pays

    • Amid Mass Returns, a Teacher’s Hopes for Refugee Girls in Afghanistan

      As hundreds of thousands of Afghan refugees return from Pakistan, we speak to Aqeela Asifi, a prize-winning educator of refugee girls in the country’s Punjab province, about how the mass returns will impact girls’ education and thus the future of Afghanistan.

      https://www.newsdeeply.com/refugees/community/2017/03/09/amid-mass-returns-a-teachers-hopes-for-refugee-girls-in-afghanistan
      #filles #femmes #éducation

    • Facing problems in Pakistan, Afghans return home in droves

      For years, Afghans have fled the violence in their country, seeking asylum in Europe or elsewhere in the Middle East. But over the past year, about 600,000 Afghans have crossed the border back into Afghanistan, coming from Pakistan, Iran and Europe when they are denied asylum.

      http://www.pbs.org/newshour/updates/facing-problems-pakistan-afghans-return-home-droves

    • Afghans Returned from Pakistan Struggle on Kabul Career Ladder

      As hundreds of thousands of Afghans return from neighboring countries, young graduates face discrimination, language barriers and a dearth of connections in a country many had never been to before, Valerie Plesch reports for Al-Fanar Media.


      https://www.newsdeeply.com/refugees/articles/2017/12/11/afghans-returned-from-pakistan-struggle-on-kabul-career-ladder

    • Viaggio tra i rifugiati afghani respinti dal Pakistan

      Fin dagli anni ‘70 gli afghani fuggiti dal proprio paese hanno cercato rifugio in Pakistan. Tuttavia la loro situazione negli ultimi anni è diventata critica. Utilizzati per esercitare pressioni politiche su Kabul, subiscono continue pressione per far ritorno nel loro paese. A queste poi si sono aggiunte minacce e violenze crescenti. Una strategia che ha funzionato, come ci racconta Giuliano Battiston: migliaia sono i rifugiati tornati nel loro paese dove all’assenza di casa e lavoro fa da contraltare la presenza della guerra

      «A Peshawar avevo una mia bottega. Era piccola, ma andava bene. Vendevo zucchero, sale, olio, sapone. Non potevo lamentarmi. Ora eccomi qui, vendo meloni e angurie che compro da altri. Lo faccio da pochi giorni e non so per quanto ancora. Ma non mi basta per mandare avanti la famiglia».

      Rabihullah ha 45 anni e 12 figli. Nato in Afghanistan, fuggito dalla guerra, ha trascorso gran parte della vita in Pakistan, ma pochi mesi fa è stato costretto a tornare. Lo incontriamo all’inizio di una via sterrata che si dipana verso i campi coltivati, all’incrocio con la strada principale che conduce fuori città dal centro di Jalalabad, capoluogo di Nangarhar, provincia orientale al confine con il Pakistan. Seduto sulla paglia, alle spalle decine e decine di meloni profumati, in testa uno zuccotto chiaro, Rabihullah indossa un semplice vestito bianco, rattoppato qua e là. «Sono nato nel distretto di Bati Kut, qui nel Nangarhar. Ci siamo trasferiti in Pakistan quando ero adolescente. Di preciso non saprei quando. Ricordo che il mio primo digiuno per il Ramadan l’ho fatto lì. Non stavamo male a Peshawar. Ma 3 mesi fa siamo dovuti tornare. I poliziotti pachistani prima hanno cominciato a chiederci i documenti, poi a picchiarci. Ci attaccavano perfino di notte. Entravano nelle nostre case all’una, alle due del mattino. Ci dicevano di andar via. Nel nostro quartiere, che era come un villaggio, eravamo tutti afghani. Ci attaccavano per questo».

      La storia di Rabihullah è simile a quella di decine di migliaia di connazionali, costretti a rientrare in Afghanistan a causa delle politiche repressive del governo di Islamabad. Già nel 2015, Human Rights Watch denunciava «minacce ripetute, arresti frequenti, richieste regolari di mazzette, violenze occasionali da parte della polizia pachistana nei mesi successivi all’attacco alla scuola di Peshawar», l’attentato terroristico che il 16 dicembre 2014 ha provocato la morte di 145 persone, tra cui 134 bambini.

      Anche se l’attentato è stato rivendicato dai Talebani pachistani, per le autorità i responsabili andavano cercati all’interno dell’ampia comunità di rifugiati afghani che, sin dalla fine degli anni Settanta, hanno trovato protezione dalla guerra sull’altro lato della Durand Line, in Pakistan. Quei rifugiati erano parte della più ampia diaspora che ha reso l’Afghanistan per molti anni, fino allo scoppio della guerra siriana, il primo Paese al mondo di provenienza per numero di rifugiati. Una diaspora ancora oggi numerosa.

      Secondo i dati dell’ultimo rapporto dell’Alto Commissariato dell’Onu per i rifugiati (Unhcr), Global Trends. Forced Displacement in 2017, nel mondo ci sono 2,6 milioni di rifugiati afghani, il 5% in più rispetto all’anno precedente. L’Afghanistan è il secondo paese di provenienza dei rifugiati dopo la Siria (6,3 milioni). La maggior parte vive in Pakistan (poco meno di 1,4 milioni) e in Iran (poco meno di 1 milione), ma i due Paesi ospitano anche un gran numero di emigrati privi di documenti, non registrati dalle Nazioni Unite (circa 1 milione in Pakistan, 1 milione e mezzo in Iran). «Nel corso degli ultimi 40 anni, dall’inizio della guerra in Afghanistan nel 1978, l’Iran e il Pakistan hanno ospitato il più alto numero di rifugiati afghani», ricorda la ricercatrice Jelena Bjelica, che incontriamo nell’ufficio di Kabul dell’Afghanistan Analysts Network, il più accreditato centro di ricerca del Paese.

      Molti sono tornati. Dal 2001, dal Pakistan sono rientrati ben 3,9 milioni di rifugiati afghani. Quanti non lo hanno fatto sono diventati armi diplomatiche nelle mani del governo di Islamabad, il cui establishment militare è accusato di alimentare il conflitto per ragioni strategiche. «I rifugiati vengono usati per esercitare pressioni politiche su Kabul. La prassi di non estendere la validità dei documenti di registrazione è uno degli strumenti più comuni», nota Jelena Bjelica.

      «Nel 2016 e in parte nel 2017, le autorità pachistane hanno esercitato molte pressioni sugli afghani affinché tornassero indietro» conferma il ricercatore indipendente Wali Mohammad Kandiwal, autore di diverse pubblicazioni sui processi migratori, che incontriamo a Jalalabad. Alle pressioni si sono aggiunte minacce e violenze crescenti, come testimoniato nel 2017 da un altro rapporto di Human Rights Watch. La strategia ha funzionato. Lo certificano i numeri. Tra gennaio 2016 e dicembre 2017, almeno 1,2 milioni di afghani sono rientrati dall’Iran e dal Pakistan. Nel 2017, 460.000 afghani senza documenti sono rientrati o sono stati deportati dall’Iran, 100.000 dal Pakistan e 7.000 da Paesi europei, a cui vanno aggiunti almeno altri 60.000 rifugiati registrati, tornati dal Pakistan. «Il loro è stato un vero dilemma: rimanere o tornare? Entrambe le opzioni erano rischiose. Chi è tornato, spesso non è convinto di aver fatto la scelta giusta», aggiunge Kandiwal.

      Anche Rabihullah non ne è certo. «Il lavoro non c’è, la casa costa troppo, non parliamo della sicurezza: qui si combatte dovunque», spiega sconfortato mentre ci guida lungo i viottoli del quartiere in cui vive, nella periferia di Jalalabad. Dietro un cancello di metallo c’è casa sua. Un atrio di pochi metri quadrati, delimitato da alte mura. Sulla destra, un ripiano di legno con una bombola del gas e qualche stoviglia: «è la cucina». Appena sopra, un filo con dei panni stesi. Una porta blu spicca contro il marrone delle pareti di fango. «Come vedi, la casa è fatta di un’unica stanza». C’è un’unica finestra e, di fronte all’entrata, un letto di corde intrecciate con la base in legno, tipico di queste parti. Una scala in bambù raggiunge il tetto della stanza, dove sono stesi altri panni. «È tutto qui», dice guardandosi intorno e lamentando la scarsa assistenza del governo, inefficiente e corrotto. «Le risorse ci sono, ma vengono dirottate su progetti privati, sottratte, rubate», ci dice un funzionario della sede locale dell’Organizzazione internazionale per le migrazioni (Oim), che chiede l’anonimato.

      Non si tratta soltanto di denaro. La risorsa più importante, qui, è la casa. Meglio ancora, la terra. Secondo il «Policy Framework on IDPs and Returnees» del governo, «l’assegnazione della terra sarà un contributo fondamentale nel successo di soluzione durature» per i rifugiati. Ma la realtà è diversa. «Il piano governativo è molto ambizioso, e i politici non fanno mai mancare promesse elettorali su questo tema. Ma l’assegnazione delle terre è uno dei processi più corrotti che ci siano», nota Jelena Bjelica, che sull’argomento ha scritto un articolo molto informato.

      Lo conferma Wali Mohammad Kandiwal, che ci anticipa i risultati della sua ultima ricerca, promossa dal Feinstein International Center dell’Università statunitense di Tufts. Si intitola «Homeland, but no land for home. A Case Study of Refugees in Towns: Jalalabad» e l’autore la sintetizza così: «la terra è il problema principale soprattutto qui, nella provincia di Nangarhar. Il governo punta a far tornare gli emigrati, ma non riesce a soddisfarne i bisogni e le legittime richieste. La burocrazia e soprattutto la corruzione sull’assegnazione delle terre rendono l’intero sistema dell’accoglienza del tutto fallimentare».

      Alla corruzione e all’inefficienza del governo si sommano altri ostacoli. Il primo è il costo della terra, il bene più ambito. Secondo i dati riportati dallo Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (Sigar), l’organo di controllo che riferisce al Congresso degli Stati Uniti sui soldi pubblici spesi nel Paese centro-asiatico, dal 2001 il costo della terra è aumentato del 1.000%. Un aumento ancora più significativo si registra nella provincia di Nangarhar, a causa delle speculazioni legate al rientro dei profughi dal Pakistan, delle mafie locali, delle dispute sui terreni e del landgrabbing.

      C’è poi il problema strutturale dell’enorme peso demografico, sociale ed economico delle migrazioni forzate. Secondo una recente ricerca coordinata dall’Oim, in 15 delle 34 province afghane con la maggiore mobilità transfrontaliera e interna, tra il 2012 e il 2017 più di 3,5 milioni di persone sono ritornate dall’estero o sono state costrette a lasciare la propria casa, per trasferirsi in altre zone del paese. Tra coloro che sono rientrati in patria, 1 milione e 355 mila provenivano dal Pakistan, 398 mila dall’Iran. Il 25% di tutti i returnees si sono stabiliti proprio nella provincia di Nangarhar, che ha registrato 499,194 nuovi arrivi – ufficiali – tra il 2012 e il 2017.

      Tra questi c’è Hejrat, 33 anni, carnagione scura, occhi celesti e un sorriso rassicurante. «Siamo tornati nel giugno 2017. Era un periodo in cui tante famiglie decidevano di tornare indietro», racconta. «Sono nato in Pakistan, ma la mia famiglia è originaria del distretto di Rodat, non distante da Jalalabad». Hejrat ha vissuto a lungo in Pakistan, a Peshawar, prima di essere costretto a tornare: «per i pachistani, gli afghani sono un fastidio. Abbiamo sopportato a lungo, poi siamo partiti». Per farlo ha dovuto chiedere un prestito: «I miei genitori erano già tornati. Ho chiesto un prestito di 10.000 rupie pachistane (circa 70 euro, ndr), ho fatto i bagagli e sono partito. Eravamo 5 persone, tutta la mia famiglia. Al confine, l’Onu ci ha dato una tenda, 100 chili di farina e 3 coperte. Ora eccoci qui». Hejrat sostiene che l’assistenza ricevuta sia insufficiente. «Abbiamo bisogno di tutto: cibo, lavoro, soldi. Con i soldi potrei cominciare un’attività e restituire quel che devo. Ho ancora debiti da pagare in Pakistan».

      Hejrat è tornato in Afghanistan nel giugno 2017, quando la morsa delle autorità pachistane cominciava ad allentarsi. «In quel periodo le autorità hanno prolungato la validità dei documenti degli afghani e il ministero afghano per i Rifugiati ha trovato un accordo con la controparte a Islamabad», ricorda Kandiwal. Nel 2018, la pressione è ulteriormente diminuita. Eppure, i rientri dal Pakistan continuano, così come gli abusi. Da gennaio a oggi, secondo l’Oim circa 23.000 afghani senza documenti sono tornati in Afghanistan dal Pakistan (mentre sono circa 510.000 quelli rientrati dall’Iran, a causa delle crescenti pressioni delle autorità iraniane e della svalutazione del rial). «Siamo tornati da 5 mesi», racconta Hakim, 25 anni. «Siamo stati costretti ad andarcene. I poliziotti ci picchiavano ogni giorno con i bastoni, ci perseguitavano, continuavano a crearci problemi. Quando hanno esagerato, abbiamo deciso di partire. Molta gente ha preso la nostra stessa decisione».

      Hakim si considera afghano, ma è nato in Pakistan. «Sono nato vicino a Peshawar, nel campo (rifugiati, ndr) di Akora. Poi siamo finiti a vivere su Charsadda road, fuori dai campi, con altre famiglie afghane. La mia famiglia si è trasferita in Pakistan 35 anni fa a causa della guerra». La guerra continua ancora oggi, ma Hakim – pur non essendoci mai vissuto – è tornato nella patria dei genitori. «Non era più possibile vivere a Peshawar: troppi problemi».

      Anche qui non mancano. «In Pakistan facevo il lavoratore a giornata, lo stesso provo a fare qui. Ma è più difficile. Ho provato ad andare a Kabul, ma non ho trovato niente. Vivo con mia madre e mio padre, con mia moglie e i miei 5 figli. In tutto, siamo 8 persone». Hakim ci mostra casa, una tenda di plastica marrone, fornita dal Norwegian Refugee Council. Il tetto è in lamiera, le pareti in plastica e tela. Sopra l’ingresso svetta una bandiera afghana. Sui lati, una stampella di fil di ferro sorregge un vassoio di metallo con qualche utensile. Un intricato giro di fili porta l’elettricità. «Ma va e viene». All’interno, diversi materassi, arrotolati per risparmiare spazio, un peluche spelacchiato e qualche pentola. La tenda si trova in un ampio parcheggio sterrato, per gran parte occupato da ferraglia e calcinacci. Dietro la tenda c’è un palazzo in costruzione, lasciato a metà. Accanto, un’altra tenda, più bassa e più piccola.

      Qualche metro più in là, un orticello di due metri per due. Pomodori, melanzane e poco altro. Hakim vorrebbe tornare nel villaggio dei genitori, nel distretto di Bati Kut, ma non può: «lì c’è la guerra».


      http://openmigration.org/analisi/viaggio-tra-i-rifugiati-afghani-respinti-dal-pakistan


  • Escaping War: Where to next? The Challenges of IDP Protection in Afghanistan

    Displacement has been a feature of Afghanistan’s humanitarian crisis for decades, yet a new study by NRC, IDMC and Samuel Hall reveals how intensifying conflict across the country has caused a sharp escalation in the numbers of IDPs across the country.

    Last year, on average, 1200 Afghan women, girls, boys and men were displaced each day. Over a million have been forced to flee their homes the in last two years alone.

    Escaping War: Where to next? The Challenges of IDP Protection in Afghanistan sheds new light on the protection challenges facing displaced Afghans. Combining the voices of IDPs with analysis of primary data collected from IDPs and secondarily displaced returning refugees across Afghanistan, the study reveals major gaps in access to key humanitarian services, as well as a set of persistent and entrenched vulnerabilities that blight the lives of IDPs.


    https://www.nrc.no/resources/reports/escaping-war-where-to-next-the-challenges-of-idp-protection-in-Afghanistan
    #IDPs #déplacés_internes #Afghanistan #asile #migrations #réfugiés #COI

    Lien vers le rapport:
    https://www.nrc.no/globalassets/pdf/reports/escaping-war---where-to-next/nrc_idp_escaping-war_where-to-next.pdf


  • Italy: Court of Rome upholds appeal against transfer of Afghan national to Norway, where his application had been rejected

    On 5 June 2018, the Ordinary Court of Rome ruled in case no. 58068/2017, which concerned an appeal against the decision to transfer an Afghan asylum applicant to Norway, where his first asylum application was rejected and his removal order to Afghanistan is pending.

    First, the Court of Rome noted, as per the CJEU’s interpretation in C-578/16 C.K. and others, that Article 17 of the Dublin III Regulation is an integral part of the Dublin system, and that Article 4 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union can be engaged even where there are no substantial grounds for believing that there are systemic flaws in the Member State responsible for examining the application for asylum.

    Second, the Court observed, based on available country of origin information with regard to Afghanistan, such as the annual report of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan and a report from Human Rights Watch, that returning the applicant, who is a young male without a network of support in Afghanistan, would put him in risk of death and of violation of his fundamental rights. According to the Court, it would be contrary to Article 4 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union to ignore the concrete risk of inhuman or degrading treatment solely based on the lack of systematic deficiencies in the Member State concerned (in casu, Norway).

    Th