Update from Schiphol hunger strike, 07/05/13

Here is an update on the hunger strike in Schiphol, translated from the Deportatie Verzet website:

Despite the heavy pressure on the asylum seekers, there is still a group of 20 hunger strikers in Schiphol detention centre.

Two of the hunger strikes have been placed permanently in isolation, another two have meanwhile been taken to the medical detention centre. Guards and management are holding out for the end of the hunger strike, and are refusing to speak to the hunger strikers about any of their demands. The hunger strikers, they say, are giving the ‘justice’ institution a ‘bad name’.

Deportatie Verzet have spoken with I, a 29 year old woman from Mali. She fled her own country because of violence, sought asylum here and has been imprisoned for the last 6 months. She is sick, but her repeated demands for medical support have been ignored. In protest against her detention and against the lack of healthcare, on 1st May she and other asylum seekers in Schiphol detention centre went on hunger strike.

She has spent the last two days in an isolation cell, with just a mattress and a thin sheet. She was cold there.

The light stayed on for 24 hours a day and it was so bright that she couldn’t sleep. Today she was again brought back to her wing but she was in a bad way.

You can listen to I’s story (in English), told by another detainee, here.

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