One week after the jump of migrants in Melilla, in which at least 23 people died -37, according to local NGOs- some 500 residents have gathered this Friday in the Plaza de Callao in Madrid to protest under the slogan “Against the deaths in borders – Black lives matter”, after a unified call by dozens of associations in defense of the rights of migrants, including the State Regularization Now Movement, and supported by Amnesty International, Izquierda Unida or Podemos, among others.
Witnesses of the Moroccan raids to keep migrants away from the border: “They persecute us much more”
The first choirs began to be heard at 7:30 p.m., accompanying the cry of “no human being is illegal”, in an act in which the anger for what happened a week ago, after the violent clash between migrants, the majority of Sudanese origin, and the Moroccan gendarmerie, which responded aggressively to the attempt to cross the border. “These are not deaths, they are murders,” cried the participants, who carried various banners, one of which, one of the largest, adapted the American ‘Black lives matter’ to the immediate context: “Stop killing blacks.”
Responsibility for the deaths was made shared by all the actors involved. Morocco, Spain, the European Union and NATO, all “guilty”, with special reference to the political color of the Spanish Executive: “Progressive government, it is also racist”. They were, for the most part, simple and direct slogans that channeled the rejection of the event, and that Regularization Now, through one of its spokespersons, linked to the repressive legislation and its use against migrants: the ‘gag’ law, or the of foreigners A signature sheet was circulated among the protesters so that those who wanted to stamp their signature on the Popular Legislative Initiative to impose a massive regularization of foreigners who are in Spain without a residence permit.
The diversity of groups, together with the low volume of the public address system, caused that, during several moments of the concentration, which lasted for an hour, the songs intersected, although they all went in the same direction. “Neither more nor less, the same rights”, or “Melilla, brothers, we do not forget” were some of the messages that followed one another. In the middle of the act, they also wanted to symbolize the barbarity of the corpses piled up on the border, and the organization asked “racialized people” to lie down on the ground.
A provocateur, neutralized
Although there was indignation, the act was carried out calmly and with a certain internationalist vocation: “Native or foreign, it is the same working class”, repeated the concentrates, that the natives were the majority, despite the large presence of people from Africa and Latin America. The Vox militant and occasional television commentator Bertrand Ndongo also appeared at the event, who tried to get into a fight on several occasions with the other attendees, including an older man whom he reproached, with insults, for taking a photo of him, while he He filmed the act himself. Those present made his behavior ugly and the man ended up moving away a little.
The claims of the organizers go through an independent investigation to determine the exact number and entity of the deceased, as well as the victims. Known statistical data of the migratory reality were reiterated, such as the fact that the vast majority of irregular migrants arrive in Spain by plane and not by small boat. “Grande-Marlaska, you jump the fence”, the Minister of the Interior was censored, who denied in Congress the veracity of the videos showing hot returns during the border jump on Friday. “CIEs, raids, fences and borders, this is how European wealth is built”, was another of the chants, which pointed out the grievance between “from the closed north” versus the “looted south”. Another poster pointed to another comparative imbalance, alluding to the recently concluded NATO summit on the treatment of Ukrainian refugees versus asylum seekers south of the Sahara: “Putin is the bad guy for killing blue-eyed blondes,” prayed