So much hypocrisy and confusion, only one certainty: death – Trapani

Our trip continues to Trapani, where
confusion and hypocrisy are not less than elsewhere. The city’s prefect repeats
that the optimal system would be that of having small centres with few
presences, although after the closure of the Cara* in Salinagrande – which took
place more than two months ago – he determined to let the management of the
Cas, with a capacity of around 200 beds, to the institution which in Trapani
monopolises the business of first reception: the cooperative Badiagrande (with
connections in Palermo in association like „Sviluppo Solidale“ or „Opera Don

Currently Badiagrande manages: the new
Cas created at the ex-hotel Sant’Andrea in Valderice, several Sprar** projects,
while recently it has been appointed also for the management of the new hotspot
in Milo (which will first spring into action only after 15 people who are still
held by the Cie*** will be transferred) with a capacity of 400 beds.

The only certainty in this case too is
the physical and psychological death, as some drawings made by migrants
arrested in Milo and exposed in the reception hall of the Cie (soon to become
an hot spot) show.

Going back to the numbers as wished by
the prefect, surely this will also be an exception to the rules due to the
emergency, clearly, but in the meantime we ask that somebody explains to us the
operative terms of the hotspot, since the migrants present in the province
await the summons of a territorial commission since 15-18 months.

The system of the territorial
commission resulted disastrous, especially after the (only formal) increase of
the number of commissions in Sicily through the creation of detached sections.
The government has not been listening to the local actors and to the proposals
coming from those who had also been working in this area, devoting (instead)
more than 2 mio. euros. The results? One the one hand the audition time in
front of commission stay long, but in compensation deportations of our friends
are being made easier on order to make space for the new arrivals. The
disruptions created by this disastrous policy are several: just to name one in
Agrigento (a section of the commission based in Trapani) the commission works
only 2 days a week, although there are 1400 dossiers to be processed. Its
president performs at the same time five more rather important institutional
roles, the prefecture denounces a shortage of workforce, the representatives of
the police headquarters (questura) and of the city hall have given a limited
availability for the weekly meetings and finally, the members of the UNHCR are
new and with limited experience.

The territorial commission in Trapani
has to process a lot of dossiers too: 1800 of asylum seekers and more than 1000
open controversies, in this case too with representatives of the UNHCR at their
first experience, members from the questura and and the city hall who are
absent because of concurrent institutional meetings. To these discomforts
the questura of Trapani makes it more difficult by not arranging the
notification of the summons for the interested parts because of a shortage in
personnel. This problem is bypassed by the members of the commission who act
and contact directly the centres to tell them the days of the hearing! Yes,
since the daily hearings should be 32 as indicated by the ministry, thus giving
away the composure of listening, of a precise recollection of the personal
history of applicants, of the guarantees provided by the law, hence all those
things necessary to oversee the procedure for the recognition of the
international protection. Like that the confusion increases vis-à-via a system
foreseeing the increase of the number of commissions on one side (which do not
function or function extremely slow because of organisational problems, and the
dizzying increase of the persons to examine on a daily base on the other, to
the detriment of the serenity of the judgement on the dossier, as required by
the asylum procedures, which would deserve attention and conscientious
dedication, since the life and the future of the applicant for international
protection are imperilled!

A lot of confusion where the usual
suspects are in their element, a lot of hypocrisy where politicians play with
people’s lives and set rules only to their own convenience, after the migrants
are dying every day and this is a certainty, the only certainty!

Alberto Biondo

Borderline Sicilia Onlus

*Cara: Reception Centre for Asylum Seekers
Protection System for asylum and
refugee applicants
***Cie: Center for Identification and

Translation by Marco Baldan