The French police uses pepper spray regularly to arrest migrants in the trains and when they are already in the containers here at the border, but in the last two weeks we receive more and more reports about verbal and physical violence from the police towards migrants. Money and documents are stolen, people get beaten, pregnant women suffer and the truth is twisted.

13/05/2019 – one man was brought into the container where he talked to another when the PAF said in french, laughing: ” Go on, kill each other!”
The same day a man and a woman got arrested in a Flixbus close to Nice. Before being transported back to the border they had to wait in a corner outside and the cops told the man to take advantage of the situation and to “do his business”.

17/05/2019 – some people doing Ramadan asked during the night after 8 hours of detention if they could get some food. The answer of the police was: ” Shut up or we beat you up!”

22/05/2019 – a woman was brought into a container where the air-conditioning was set to cold. When she asked during the night if they can turn it off the police said: “Shut up and go back to bed!” , eventhough there is no bed or any possibility to sleep.
During this day 7 people, including a pregnant woman, were hiding in the train toilets trying to cross the border. The pregnant woman was standing directly behind the door which opens towards the inside. When the police checked the train they told the people in the toilet to get out and started kicking the door. The woman got hit by the door several times on her belly. The police then pepper sprayed the toilets. When everyone eventually got out, some guys got beaten and the woman was screaming in pain. She asked the police to call an ambulance but they refused, saying she’s just pretending. She was brought to the same container with the air-conditioning and the other woman, where she was still crying from pain and probably scared as well. The other woman asked for an ambulance for the pregnant woman but the PAF refused again saying: “Shut up, she’s fine! The baby is OK, she was fine before!”. When the pregnant woman came out of the container she had trouble walking and was terrified. The red cross van took her to the camp where she has the opportunity to talk to NGO’s and see a doctor.
Another group of men got arrested that day while hiding in the train toilets. Again the cops kicked the door and used pepper spray to get the men out. One of the guys was hit with the police stick on his hand and still had a lot of pain when he was released from the containers later. Another one was grabbed by the throat and hit in the face several times. When he came out of the container he had a wound under his eye and a lot of blood in his pants. He was first brought to a police station in Nice. The police told him: ” it’s normal that we beat you up. They will believe us anyways.” In Nice the police made a complaint against the guy, saying he hit the cop with a piece of wood. They also tried to charge him for being a smuggler because he had some cash on him, even though he tried to explain that he needs the money to travel.

23/05/2019 – two guys were hit in the face when they got arrested. One of them wanted to show a picture if his documents on his phone but the police took it away and destroyed it.

28/05/2019 – one man asked for food in the container but was told to shut up. The man then took a piece of metal from his lighter, started to cut himself and was then banging on the door, trying to open it. The police came, handcuffed him and brought him out of the container into a room. They placed him on a chair, fixed his feet with tiewraps, and beat him, inflicting wounds on his shoulder, face and legs.

Everytime we hear something like this happening, we try to explain to the migrants that they can complain and that we can help them with a lawyer. But most of them are too afraid to do so, or don’t expect it to change anything. At least we can publish their stories here.


Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.