the government says:
“sans-papiers will not be arrested at the border”
and then denies it
a short commentary
Let us briefly qualify the statement that “undocumented immigrants entering Greece will not be arrested, but they will be handed a paper giving them one month to leave Greece”.
until 2012: no papers, some detention, “one month to leave”
This paper was more or less common practice until about three years ago. Undocumented migrants arrested at the borders were kept in police custody for three days for medical exams and then were released with the “one-month-to-leave” paper in their hands. Those who applied for asylum were kept in detention (detention centers or police stations) for up to 3 months, as a form of punishment of applicants, and also to discourage other migrants from applying for asylum. Very few were actually granted asylum (Greece had the lowest acceptance rate in Europe), very few were deported, some were occasionally arrested again, and all undocumented migrants were constantly fearing and facing police repression. All of them were trapped in Greece. All were monitored and ultimately controlled by smuggling mafias (with the participation of -para-state officers).
the role of detention after the summer of 2012
After the “Xenios Zeus” Operation in August 2012 …read more