“Germany is deporting” – reporter explains hurdles in the German system

TV column “Germany is deporting”: “20,000 euros per person” – ARD reporter shows the deportation bureaucracy.

Germany wants to repatriate more foreigners, especially those who have committed criminal offenses – and this plan regularly fails. An ARD report takes a closer look at the process, those involved and the countless obstacles.

A good 300,000 people living in Germany are currently required to leave the country, but 250,000 of them are “tolerated” because they either have a job, are in training, do not have a passport or are simply too ill to be deported. But none of this applies to 50,000 people, they could theoretically be deported at any moment. But only 13,000 people were transported back to their homes last year. Why so little?

The issue of deportation divides society. For some, the executive is a lame bunch on this issue, which allows itself to be tricked again and again by people without a right of residence. For others, deportation is a contradiction to human dignity and legalized racism. The truth? Hidden somewhere in between. And is extremely difficult to pin down.

Torn the passport? “Believable,” estimates the officer

“Rabiat” reporter Christoph Kürbel did a search in the ARD report “Germany is deporting”: How does the deportation system work? At the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) in Berlin, he accompanies Daniel Rauscher, a “very, very, very German civil servant”. Case one is a young Kurd who fled from Turkey to Germany in a truck because he sees no future for himself there due to his origins. His passport is said to have been torn up during the escape. “Credible,” Rauscher estimates after the three-hour hearing, but he cannot yet say whether the application for asylum will be granted. However, the official emphasizes that he is never guided by emotions when it comes to this question; the decision about the future of the young Kurd is made “exactly and precisely” along the lines of the law.

The interior ministers of the federal states have put the federal government on the to-do list to deport more people in the future. This could also have consequences for people who do not have a German passport but were born and grew up here. The rapper Sugar MMFK, for example, grew up near Bonn, he and his brother speak German with a Rhineland tone. “According to paper, I’m not German, but according to my feelings I’m 100 percent,” says the musician. But a German mind alone is not enough.

Deport one, take on four new ones

The rapper is not a saint, he had already been in prison for minor crimes. Germany would probably like to deport him, but Sugar MMFK has no passport – neither German nor Angolan. That makes deportation a problem, explains Bremen’s Interior Senator Ulrich Mäurer: A charter flight for the federal police costs 20,000 euros, and if the receiving country then rejects the person because of a missing passport, for example, “we waste the money”.

And even if you can be deported, it’s often a pointless act, because “three days later there are four new ones”. For Mäurer, there is still no alternative to deporting foreign criminals: “If you overwhelm the population – and that is the case if you don’t take action against criminals – then the whole thing will tip over.”

In the report, the head of an immigration office tells how deportation works: it usually happens at night. If those affected refuse to pack their things, the officials will do it. “It always involves a lot of tension,” says the woman. Sometimes those to be deported would harm themselves, such as drinking cleaning products, to prevent their return. And sometimes the accompanying police officers are close to tears during such measures.

Successful resistance to emigration

Kürbel also shoots in the deportation prison at Munich Airport, where up to 20 people wait an average of 18 days for their flight. The manager there speaks very matter-of-factly about attempts by the deportation detainees to “prevent their fitness to travel”. Mohammed is imprisoned there. He has been in Germany for a year and a half, now speaks the language and has the prospect of a job. Because Mohammad has a degree in computer science, and people are looking for them in this country.

But his tolerance has expired, so it should now go back to Iraq. The next day, Kürbel first reached the young Iraqi in the hospital and then on the way back to the asylum center. Something prevented Mohammed’s deportation, his seat on the scheduled flight remains empty. The taxpayer still paid for it.

It is not uncommon for deportations to fail shortly before they are carried out. There are many reasons for this – including the resistance of those who are obliged to leave the country. For example, according to a former federal police officer, there was a riot during so-called pre-boarding: “Pees himself, shits himself, spits around, shouts around.” If this causes an uproar among the passengers, the captain sometimes decides that the person to be deported should get off again must be on board because of the dear peace. “The person grins, you take them back to the car and drive back to the police station.”

Rely on voluntariness: Money for a new beginning

In the end, Kürbel flies to Iraq himself and talks to people there who have been deported from Germany. Among other things, he meets the Yazidi Darwish, who finally left Germany voluntarily with the BAMF’s “StartHope” repatriation program while his wife and children are still in the German asylum process.

Darwish received 2,000 euros from the German state when he left the country and another 1,500 after his arrival in Iraq, but he still lives in abject poverty and from what he earns on his small piece of land “with his own muscle power”. Still, Darwish is happy to be home. he wants to stay The principle of helping people to help themselves: maybe there is a way out of the deportation dilemma. It always seems cheaper.

Bureaucracy meets fate: The “Rabiat” report by the ARD reporter team “Y-Kollektiv” has brought together many pieces of the puzzle from the gray area between “deporting all foreigners” and “right to stay for everyone”, and commendably so, without taking a stand or even becoming polemical. All of this is by no means a complete picture, and many question marks remain. “The deportation system is simply incredibly complicated and time-consuming,” sums up Christoph Kürbel. “Especially if it is to be done correctly under the rule of law.”

Jean Harris

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