The proliferation of prosecutions towards people in solidarity with the exiles, especially in name of the article 622-1 of the CESEDA (Code of the Entry and Residence of Foreigners and of the Right of Asylum) which charges up to five years of prison and a fine of € 30,000 for “facilitating or attempting to facilitate the illegal entry, movement or residence of a foreigner in France”, arouses indignation and mobilization.
See for instance the Roya Citizen’s press release just below, the repression being particularly strong at the moment in the Roya valley and on the French-Italian border, or this “Letter to the President: solidarity is not a crime” that invites everyone to question, with our words, the president of the republic using the appropriate form on the site of the Élysée:
A fund has been created to support victims of prosecution because of their solidarity with the exiles, to meet the costs of trials:
« LETTER TO THE PRESIDENT: SOLIDARITY IS NOT A CRIME.
Today, I committed a crime of solidarity. A real, concrete one. Yesterday too. And tomorrow I will do it again. I am not the only one, we are thousands to refuse the policy of the worst, to refuse that a crime against which we fought under the right is used against us by the left.
To refuse not to help our neighbor.
I firmly believe in our motto, “Liberty, Equality and Fraternity”, great and beautiful words which, under your five-year term, became so small.
I refuse this smallness.
So leave in peace, Mr. President, Cédric Herrou, and all the others prosecuted for helping their neighbors.
Or come and arrest me too.
Is it the color of the skin of this neighbor I am helping that doesn’t fit your sense of solidarity?
If along the roadsides between France and Italy there were little blondes with blue eyes dying of cold, hunger and fear, everyone would welcome them, wether them been foreign or not. And you would give orders not to prosecute, wouldn’t you? Perhaps you would even have the courage to change the law, finding it too unjust. Who knows.
So yes, for me, and for a number of us, and we are very numerous, the color of the skin is not an obstacle to humanity and fraternity. Neither religion is.
I send you this message on the box provided for this purpose, on the following link http://www.elysee.fr/ecrire-au-president-de-la-republique/
And I hope that many friends
And friends of friends
And finally a whole bunch of people who I’ve never met but who share my values, that of a fraternal Republic, will share the message with their words and in their name.
Doctor of Law
PS, if those who do this on their behalf leave a little comment under this post it would be great »
Press release from Roya Citizen association
« This Friday, January 6, the same day in which the justice decides to set free Pierre-Alain Manonni for having driven three refugees, four other solidarity citizens are arrested between Breil and Sospel, and held 24 hours in police custody.
Françoise Gogois, René Dahon, Gérard Bonnet, and Dan Oudin, were simply looking to move six young refugees to other places of private accommodation with dignified and secure hosting circumstances.
We would like to remind that the Prosecutor of the Republic, during the trial of Cédric Herrou, accused him, amogs other charges, of “housing refugees in undignified conditions” because they were in tents or caravans. This action was then in line with what the Prosecutor was asking.
We remind also that:
– Roya’s volunteer hosts are overwhelmed by the arrival of dozens of refugees per week;
– return to the border always happens;
– housing facilities for underage are saturated, because they are insufficient and inadequate.
The same Prosecutor also appealed the judicial decision concerning Pierre-Alain, thus denying any indulgence for citizen solidarity.
The hunt based on racial profiling and of solidarity citizens goes on, despite the official release (of Pierre-Alain Manonni).
The latter angered Mr. Estrosi, and made him insult the justice of our country. We remind him that “the insult to the police forces” is rather the fact of those who use these forces in order to track down the refugees, endangering them, when the vocation of police forces is to protect people, regardless of their origin or skin color. The uneasiness of the police forces, and in particular of the gendarmerie, is increasingly evident in front of this policy decided by public authorities who have not seen, heard or understood anything about the refugees and the populations of our valleys. With a small part of the cost of this huge deployment of repressive forces, the few hundreds of refugees wishing to go through our valleys could be decently accommodated.
How much time, how much suffering or even deaths, especially during this cold winter, how many arrests of solidarity citizens will be necessary for the government to take the necessary measures to protect these women, men and children ?
We call once again for the flawless support of all solidarity citizens and their massive presence during the trial of Françoise GOGOIS, René DAHON, Gérard BONNET (known as Gibi), and Dan OUDIN, prosecuted for facilitating the illegal entry or residence of foreigners in France (based on Ceseda Art L 622-1 and L-622-3)
* The original letter and press release in French are here.*