Pazarkule. Turkey. March 18, 2020. In the morning we learned that some people were taken to the immigration office, which was 4-5 km away from the area where they were held at the border. In addition, some of our friends who were active in the region explained that the refugees who were brought to the immigration office had no money and needed support for water and food. According to our local friends, they were a group of 90 people and were held at the immigration office without being able to meet basic needs.
Originally published by GÖÇMEN DAYANIŞMASI. Translated by Enough 14.
Our friends who are willing to support have been directed to AFAD (The Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency) by the staff of the Immigration Department , which is located directly behind the building. They said that there is a whole range of relief supplies in the AFAD warehouse.
We have also learned that the distribution of food in the storage area where the refugees are located has been restricted. Only women receive food. The gendarmerie has announced that the area will be evacuated by Friday.
The place where our friends have been distributing food is now being converted into a bus parking lot.
Various cities in Turkey (e.g. Ankara, Konya, Kocaeli-Izmit, Istanbul, Kütahya, Afyon, Bursa) were called out with megaphones. Full buses leave the area new empty buses arrive. There is information that the buses, which are standing next to the migration authority, can be called to the camp if necessary and take the refugees to the desired city free of charge.
One person from the area reported that three people tried to cross the river, two returned, but one was missing. The gendarmerie teams continued the search.
It is also said that buses take the refugees with identity papers to their respective provinces and send those without papers to Kilis. Many people are also going to Istanbul. Some of them previously lived in Istanbul, and some of them had no place to return to because they had given up their homes in the city they came from. They also go to Istanbul. However, it is not clear how this decision will be taken. There might be some difficulties in trying to send people to the cities according to their documents. We know that it is not possible for some people to make more than their own statements because they lost their documents when they crossed the border or when they were pushed back.
Although the people going to Istanbul were usually brought near the Esenler bus station during the day, we learned that a few people were dropped off near Aksaray. The people who were dropped off near the Esenler bus station began to gather in the rain at various points around the bus station. There were no institutions or structures to inform these people and direct them to the appropriate facilities for their health and shelter needs. There is no support for buying tickets to reach their former cities. During the crisis at the Esenler bus station until late in the evening, the support was provided by our 2-3 friends who were there on their own initiative.
Noborder Pazarkule/Evros, March 18, 2020.
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