Germany sends refugee to her death in Kosovo

This video is about Roma and lead poisoning in Mitrovica.

This video is the sequel.

By Elisabeth Zimmermann in Germany:

Roma woman dies following deportation to Kosovo

19 January 2011

The village of Mayen, near the city of Koblenz in the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate, is governed by a Social Democratic Party (SPD) administration. A Roma family originating from Kosovo had lived in Mayen since 1999. Despite the serious illness of one of the members of the family, Mrs. Borka T., the whole family was deported under inhumane conditions in early December to Kosovo. Just a month later, Mrs. T. died of a brain hemorrhage.

In the early hours of December 7, police picked up Mrs. Borka T. with her husband and her 14-year-old son Avdil from their home in Mayen. They were given just 30 minutes to pack a few personal belongings. They were then taken by police to Dusseldorf Airport and together with other refugees deported to Pristina, the capital of Kosovo.

Mrs. Borka T. was examined at Düsseldorf Airport by a doctor whose job was to give the okay for her deportation. Mrs. T.’s own specialist doctors had diagnosed her as suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, depression and neuralgia. Due to these symptoms, she received regular medication and therapy with the support of the Caritas organisation. These facts were known but ignored by officials at the airport.

The ailing woman’s condition was also swept aside by the local administration in Mayen-Koblenz, which ordered the deportation of the family. The Trier Administrative Court then upheld the deportation, knowing full well that no possibilities of treatment for the woman existed in Kosovo.

The Mayen-Koblenz administration denied any responsibility on its part even after the death of Borka T. was announced earlier this year. A spokesman merely declared that the authority had relied on the judgement of the Trier Administrative Court, which had stated that there were options for her treatment in Kosovo. The spokesman refuted any correlation between a lack of drugs and the woman’s death as absurd, declaring with cynicism: “Intracranial bleeding is always a possibility”.

The lawyer for the family, Jens Dieckmann, issued a press release on January 7 describing the family’s traumatic experience in Kosovo and the subsequent brutal deportation of Borka T. and her family:

“In October 1999 Mrs. T. came to Germany with her family. Previously they had lived in Mitrovica, the city in Kosovo was at the center of fighting (in the Yugoslav war) and was divided (and remains divided) between Serbs and Kosovo Albanians. She witnessed the destruction of her house during the war and the death of many of her neighbors, friends and relatives. Mrs. T. and her family are members of the Roma ethnic group and were trapped in the war between the crossfire of warring Serbs and Albanians. The Albanians expelled the family of Mrs. T., together with other Roma from Mitrovica, accusing them of collaboration with the Serbs. The family subsequently fled from the ruins of Mitrovica.

“Since fleeing from Mitrovica, where Mrs. T. experienced burning houses and countless dead and wounded, she has suffered post-traumatic stress disorder. In Germany, she was therefore in constant specialist care and with the support of Caritas underwent a specific trauma therapy.”

The lawyer then went on to describe how the court in Trier upheld her deportation, although the court was fully aware of her condition. Ignoring humanitarian grounds for denying the deportation, the court preferred instead to rely on thoroughly erroneous information from the German Foreign Office that the woman would be referred to specialists in Kosovo and given immediate treatment.

In fact, the conditions on the ground in Pristina were very different. Any claim by German authorities that they could not have anticipated such a lack of medical facilities in Kosovo is completely untenable.

A number of reports and studies by refugee aid organisations such as ProAsyl or the United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF, have documented the desperate social and political situation in Kosovo.

There are only about 300,000 jobs for Kosovo’s 1.8 million inhabitants, and the official unemployment rate is 45 percent. For the Roma and Ashkali communities, the rate is 95 to 100 percent. There is virtually no form of support for the unemployed, and medical care is only available to those who can pay for it. Education is also bound up with paying fees. The province’s agricultural system is not competitive, and there is no significant productive sector. Kosovo’s main export is scrap metal.

In a report by the Council of Europe, Kosovo is described today as a land dominated by “mafias and organised crime”. The commander of the KLA and current prime minister, Thaci Hacim, is accused of heading a criminal cartel involved in murders, prostitution and drug trafficking. (See “Washington’s “humanitarian” war and the crimes of the KLA“)

The German Supreme Court has accepted a manoeuvre by the Interior Ministry to prevent current asylum law being deemed unconstitutional: here.

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33 thoughts on “Germany sends refugee to her death in Kosovo

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