Corrected Press Release 10/2012 from the 20th of July 2012
No Border Camp Cologne / Düsseldorf 2012
+++ Activists occupy the French Consulate in Düsseldorf+++ Martin Luther Platz 26 +++ Request for clarification of the death of Noureddin Mohamed (28) in Calais +++
Noureddin Mohamed, a popular 28 year-old refugee from Darfur, was found dead in a canal in central Calais, France, at 3.30am Saturday 7th July. Initially police stated that Noureddin died following a civilian pursuit after having stolen a woman’s mobile phone and jumping into the canal. Yet this story has been changed numerous times since, and even the official line on how he died is unclear.
No-one involved in the alledged pursuit of Noureddin has been arrested, nor is anything known about them. At present the police have closed the case claiming accidental death on the basis of statements from three unknown sources. Noureddin’s body has been buried without autopsy and no attempt has been made to hear statements from his friends. The victim’s uncle has made an official demand with the state prosecutor for a murder inquiry.
Noureddin’s friends tell a different story from the official line. They state that moments before his death, the victim and his friends were aggressively challenged by police. This is not without precedent in Calais, a town where migrants are hassled, stopped, chased and arrested on a daily basis over immigration issues.
This case echos numerous others in Calais that police have refused to investigate.
Noureddin’s death has alarming parallels with that of a young Eritrean man, Ismael, whose body was found at the bottom of a bridge near the apparent site of Noureddin’s death on 22 December last year. The police immediately closed the case, writing it off as suicide, without any evidence for this conclusion.
Noureddin had been in Calais four years and had only recently been granted leave to remain there as a refugee. Friends, family, supporters and other migrant communities in Calais believe that his death is not being taken seriously because he was a migrant.
Sans-papiers and refugees protested repeatedly in Calais, showing that they are willing to risk everything in order to show their anger at the injustice commited to them.
This Tuesday, 17th July, over 20 people held a demo outside the French embassy in London to call for an immediate investigation into the death of Noureddin Mohamed. We are here today for the same reason, as in London we demand that Noureddin’s death be investigated without further delay and proof of the official line provided.
Solidarity with Noureddin, his family, friends and migrant communities around the world.
Racist border and nation constructs continue killing around the world. That has to stop. Now.
Noureddin is the eighteenth reported death of a migrant in Calais in the past three years. Others go unnamed, without vigils and protests, without families to advocate on their behalf:
7th July: 28 year-old Noureddin Mohamed, from Sudan, was found dead in canal
9th April: Zenebe, an Eritrean man was found dead in an abandoned lace factory
22nd December: Ismael, an Ethiopian man, was found dead at the foot of a bridge
9th December: Iranian man killed after being hit by a bus walking along the road at night
17th November: Two Egyptians being transported in the boot of a car are killed during a crash. The other passengers survived.
11th September: Yousuf, aged 28, Sudan, is killed whilst trying to cross.
10th May: Iranian man is killed whilst trying to cross, apparently falling from a lorry
22nd February: Afghan man, aged 24, drowns in the canal whilst being chased by the PAF
10th April: Rahmaddin, a 16-year old Afghan, is crushed by a lorry during an attempted crossing
9th April: Eritrean migrant found dead in an abandoned building
15th December: A 15-year old Afghan boy, is killed trying to cross
30th October: 25-year old Indian man found dead in lorry during attempted crossing
13th June: Aman, a 35-year old Eritrean man died trying to wash in the canal, showers being refused by the authorities
19th May: Vietnamese woman is found dead on the road after apparently falling from a lorry
5th April: An unnamed man is killed after falling off a train in the channel tunnel
25th February: Glara, a six-day old Iraqi Kurdish baby dies as parents were forced to sleep in the cold
7th January 2009: A 30-year old Afghan stabbed in a fight