Detention of Refugees: Lawyers Can’t Even Reach Their Names

The number of refugees being detained and sent to the Repatriation Center in Ankara has increased rapidly in recent days. The Ankara Bar Association Refugee Rights Center, which represents those refugees, has announced that it cannot reach its clients.

The debate on repatriating refugees from Turkey, especially Syrians, has been an important agenda item of politics for some time. In the process of increasing rhetoric targeting refugees, hundreds of Syrians and Afghans are being detained in Ankara and sent to the Repatriation Center (GGM) located in Akyurt.

Lawyers at the Ankara Bar Association Refugee Rights Center have reported that asylum seekers detained in recent weeks, including those who are named as victims, defendants or witnesses in any judicial case, have been sent to GGM for alleged “lack of work documents” despite having residence permits.

The lawyers have not been able to reach their clients during this process. Another reason why asylum seekers are detained while walking down the street in Ankara is because of their “lack of work documents” despite having residence permits.

Lawyer Ebru Beşe, head of the Refugee Rights Center of the Ankara Bar Association, said that a large number of refugees have been detained, especially during the last ten days. “We also know that they have been held in very poor conditions and crowded conditions in intense security for the last week and ten days,” she added.

The Ankara Bar Association has demanded that the conditions of asylum seekers currently being held in the repatriation center be investigated.

Lawyer Beşe, who said that they could not report how many people were sent to the repatriation center by what means and demanded to reach their clients in a healthy way, concluded his words as follows: “We want to find out the true reason for their detention. It is a great lawlessness for a victim to be subjected to a deportation order because he is seeking his right before the courts. We demand to give us the reasons for this and to meet with the victims of these operations in a healthy way, whether they are currently in the police or in the repatriation center.“

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