5 December, 2022

The sin of not being white


By Diego Recinos

After leaving work, Alejandro Garcia, he was stopped by the police at the bus stop. After 4 hours of interrogation he was taken to an immigration detention center where he has been notified that he will be deported. His wife and son of 9 years will suffer the same fate. All despite not having a deportation order. Your sin to be suspect for not being white.

Alejandro left work, I change her clothes, He put it in a backpack and walked with his coworker to the bus stop. Just like they did every day. But nevertheless, within minutes of arriving, a police patrol touring the area fixed their attention on them. A uniformed man and woman got out of the police car. The man was Caucasian and well into age, the woman, white and young. They both went directly to the two dark men who were at the bus stop.

The meeting was direct. The police officer went directly to them and asked for their documents. Both took their respective documentation from their wallets. The officer went to the patrol to verify their identities. While, the policeman asked them for an explanation about the immigration status of both. Alejandro explained his situation. Minutes later the policewoman returned and gave Alejandro's partner his identification, but Alejandro was taken to the patrol and forcefully placed in the search position.. “They started asking me if I had weapons or if I had drugs. I answered the truth, I had none of that. Came from work. I asked them what the problem was and the policeman replied that it was a routine check due to several reports of assaults in the area ".

After being requisitioned, Alejandro was put in the patrol. Your sin, have an expired ID due to your change in the immigration process. He was taken straight to the Nordertely police station. From the 5 from the afternoon until 9 of the night, Alejandro, was subjected to an exhaustive interrogation by different members of the police. Without eating and without water, answered all the questions. until, after asking, they gave him water and many minutes later, some food. For the police, Alejandro's crime was working illegally.

Despite the accusations, Alejandro, He had submitted all his documents in due time and form to apply for a work residence and change his request from asylum to residence for work. He did everything through his lawyer, the Swede Ingmar Strandberg who personally introduced all the documents to the Migration Office. But nevertheless, around of the 10 pm was taken to an immigration detention center.

In the detention center, a substitute name for jail, Alejandro has not been allowed to receive visits. He has only been able to speak with his lawyer. The treatment has been racist and discriminatory. Migration cannot give you an explanation, because they do not know your case and do not have the documentation that the lawyer presented. Alejandro shares with 6 people one medium bedroom. Three Latinos and the other Arabs. Despite not being a prison as such, Alejandro, he has not been able to see his son from 9 years, who has suffered from psychological problems due to his long absence. The treatment is inhumane for everyone, even with people with disabilities who are in detention.

 Racism and bad treatment

While conditions are tough, the worst is the deal. “The day Tuesday 27 August a custodian came to the room and asked me what I was doing there. Why didn't I return to my country, that I should have left by now. That in Sweden they didn't want me and that I left. The treatment and the tone were completely derogatory. He asked me my name and I confirm that I was not the one who should have been deported that day. But they always talk to us that way ".

It is not the first time that Alejandro feels that derogatory and even racist tone. From his questioning to his subsequent conversations with the police at the immigration detention center they have made it clear to him that he is not welcome in Sweden. ” Nobody gives me an explanation about what is happening. Migration says they do not know anything about my case. The police say it was an arrest without justification because I did not commit any crime. But that I will be deported anyway even if no one tells me why ". Despite all the supporting documents, Alejandro will be deported. With him, his wife and son of 9 years will suffer the same fate.

Collateral damage

 Alejandro García has 29 years and arrived in Sweden in October 2019. Along with him came his wife and son. “I came to Sweden because the gangs wanted to kill me in El Salvador. I had to spend a month in hiding with my family because the gang wanted to kill me. They asked me for money, but I had no way to pay them. So they threatened to kill me and my family. So, after not knowing what to do, I came here. ".

Alejandro is a veterinarian graduated from the University of El Salvador. During 8 years I have worked in San Salvador and in his hometown, Santiago Texacuangos, where he was extorted by gang 18, one of the most cruel that controls part of the Salvadoran territory,  and they are the ones who control the area where he lived. Nonetheless, Alexander had a marriage of 10 years and a son of 9 who had never been away from. Upon receiving the first threats, who Alexander first thought of was his son and his wife.

When he came to Sweden, who best adapted his son. He learned the language and goes to school without fail. But the child's life collapsed with the absence of his father. "My child thinks that I abandon them and I left. Haven't seen me in three weeks. The school teacher has taken him to the psychologist several times because he is depressed. Has changed. They won't let me see it ".

According to immigration and police authorities, Alejandro, his wife and daughter will be deported to El Salvador as soon as possible. No matter that in their country they run a certain death. "I am afraid to return. I know they will kill me if they see me. But the authorities don't care ".

Alejandro spends his days without being able to see his family, no rights and no answers. Without being guilty of any crime or having committed any fault. I process their permits and had a valid work permit. Sweden, a country that proclaims its fight against racism treats this human being as an outcast. A normal day at the office is one more day to be deported and dawn in a country where you fled death. Taking the bus and going out for food is a good opportunity for the police to arrest anyone and turn them into a criminal. That is the cost of not being a bank and being suspicious of everything.

Image for illustrative user (Courtesy)