Chechen Family’s Drama in Poland
Polish media sources have reported that Polish border guards wanted to deport a Chechen family with an epileptic child, but the deportation was stopped at the last minute.
Like thousands of Chechens who have been forced to leave their homeland due to the ongoing Russian occupation, Makka and Magomed want to start a new life in peace, so they traveled to Poland. But, the Polish authorities rejected their asylum demand and in the end, the court decided to deport them. Meanwhile, Magomed was in the hospital in the city of Rzeszów due to tuberculosis and their 2 year old son was suffering from epilepsy. However, it did not stop the border guards and they tried to apply the decision without him. They took Makka and her three children, including those who have epilepsy. They were taken to Warsaw Airport, but their deportation to Russia was stopped minutes before boarding.
“If there is a decision on the deportation, we have to follow the decision. Unfortunately, for the border guards such situations are clear like black and white,” said Agnieszka Golias, spokeswomen for the Polish Border Guards.
“If there is a deportation decision, we have to do it, I understand this, but there are some international agreements that were ratified by Poland. In this case, the family was separated, moreover there was a suspicion that the deportation might be dangerous for the life of a small child. But the authorities ignored this fact. By dint of public pressure, the deportation was stopped in the very last minute. Probably, another court will decide on the fate of family in the next few days,” said the family’s legal representative, advocate Grzegorz Wilga.
The incident was also discussed during a program at the radio station “Tok FM”. Jacek Białas from the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights (Helsińskiej Fundacji Praw Człowieka) and Dr Witold Klaus, president of the Association for Legal Intervention (Stowarzyszenia Interwencji Prawnej) commented about the practice.
“Most of the foreigners who apply for refugee status, receive negative decisions together with the order to leave the country. Every day, one or two people are being deported by force with scheduled flights to Russia and other countries. However, there is a new law which protects aliens from deportation, if they go against the unfavorable court decision. Besides it, the Interior Ministry has already issued a circular which recommends the suspension of deportation. But the border guards rarely apply this rule. There have been cases that the court would repeal a decision after the expulsion. The foreigner was already abroad and did not return,” said Jacek Białas.
“Do you know why this Chechen family’s situation became so dramatic? Because the deportation decision was done on May 5 and today they tried to deport the family without letting them to apply against this decision. Before the deportation attempt, we had fought to release of family from a closed deportation center in the city of Przemyśl, due to the child’s illness. Then they couldn’t resist for a long time, because the Border Guard officers had a written consultation from an expert psychiatr that the state of small Chechen child don’t let him to stay there. I guess it is a bit related with the attitude of Polish government, because they agree to held children behind bars which I believe the biggest law mistake,” said Dr Witold Klaus.
*Text was written by Waynakh Online and edited by Michael Capobianco