June 13, 2013 — Comment
Written by Helen Hintjens & Ahmed Puri
A series of hunger strikes, following allegations of abuse, force and the use of forged documents, are showing up the fault lines in the Dutch detention system.
For the first time in more than a decade, hundreds of people in Dutch immigration detention centres have gone on hunger strikes in protest at their hopeless situation. In late May, two young Guinean men moved from Rotterdam detention centre to the prison hospital in Scheveningen in The Hague, were reported to be suffering from kidney failure as a result of dry fasting. One of them, Issa Koulibaly, a 22-year-old who has written long and eloquent letters to his lawyer and supporters, explaining exactly what has been happening to him in detention, states in his letters that if forced to return to Guinea, he would rather die.