We are still in Belgrade. One of us joined the Cars Of Hope Wuppertal team, who are working with refugees and support the Soul Welders projects in the Serbian capital. Another short impression from Belgrade.
Written by Riot Turtle
Solidarity not charity! The situation in Belgrade changed since the last time I was here. The conditions people are forced to live in due to border closures are dehumanizing and many people work hard to stop that.
Yesterday there was a demonstration against Refugee detentions in Hungary and border closures in Röszke, at the Hungarian/Serbian border.
Image: Demo against Refugee detentions and border closures in Röszke, Hungary on Saturday. Image by Twitter account freetheroszke11
I had actually planned to go to the demonstration but changed my mind as we are leaving Belgrade in a few days and there are loads of work to be done here.
Yesterday we supported the shower truck of Soul Welders again. This time at the barracks behind the main train station of Belgrade. Many refugees in Serbia live outside or in abandoned buildings and have no access to running water. Refugees can take a shower in the shower truck and get a clean towel, a t-shirt, socks and underwear. Soul Welders also distribute soap, shampoo, tooth paste and tooth brushes. The truck drives to Belgrade, the Serbian/Croatian border and the Serbian/Hungarian border. Soon we will publish an interview with Soul Welders activists about this great project.
Nobody knows how much people are living in and around the barracks. I guess there are about 1500 people here. Many people here are nervous, because they are afraid to be evicted soon. The huge construction site of the “Belgrade Waterfront” gentrification project is coming closer and closer to the barracks.
We observed that Serbian police is doing a lot of ID checks around the main train station in Belgrade. Much more compared to the last time we were here (February 2017). We also spoke with people who were intimidated by Serbian cops, especially close to the borders. People who are supporting refugees there hear sentences like: ‘The next time we see you here, we will arrest you! ”
That makes the conditions people are working in even more difficult, but the motivation to continue the work with refugees is high.
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Description : Cars Of Hope