Chechen Family Faces Deportation from France
L’Indépendant, a daily regional newspaper, has reported that a Chechen asylum seeking family who lives in Perpignan is facing a forced deportation threat from France to the Russian occupied Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.
According to the information, the family portrait is touching. The father, mother, aunt, and children including 9 month old Ayna, the smallest member of family. 19 year old Shamil is starting his Bachelor’s in architecture soon. He is also the pride of his family. They cut out articles and news from newspapers about his successful career in judo. Bekhan, 13 years old, intends to be a famous football player, while his 14 year old sister Iman wishes to start her high school education in September. But upon closer inspection, you may see that their smiles hide a united family history which is woven with war, death, abandonment and fear.
“National Court of Asylum”, “exhaustion of remedies”, “expulsion”, these words were translated by these young Chechens for their distressed parents. The Kassoumov family’s lives changed on the night of October 9, 2009. Russian soldiers and their local collaborators came to abduct Akhmed and his eldest son, Shamil. Later on his mobile phone, they found a telephone number of one of the pro-Russian regime’s opponents in the Russian occupied Chechen Republic of Ichkeria. The father and son returned home after a severe beating. Akhmed knew that they would have no other choice so they fled, abandoning all of their lives. And the future verified their decision; the armed invaders came back, but couldn’t find them. For this reason, they went to the home of Akhmed’s sister and when her son tried to intervene, they abducted him. Three days later, his dead body was found on the roadside.
In France, the Kassoumov family regained their peace and found a safe haven. The children made new friends who had no idea about their situation. The smallest member of their family, Ayna, was born here with the hope of a new life. But the French authorities don’t have the same viewpoint; they decided to deport the entire Kassoumov family except for their oldest son, Shamil. Now, the family has to leave France. “But to where? I’d prefer to go to jail rather than to go back to Chechnya where my family will not survive,” said Akhmed.
*Text was written by Waynakh Online and edited by Michael Capobianco