Friday, 17 October 2014

Stop Spreading Hatred and Intolerance towards Asylum Seekers

Praxis calls on the competent state bodies to publicly condemn the participation of public authorities in the protest against building of asylum centre nearby the Municipality of Mladenovac and take adequate measures against the representatives of local authorities who spread intolerance and oppose to fulfilling the state obligation to provide accommodation to asylum seekers in Serbia. Praxis also calls on the competent stated bodies to immediately remove the posters “Stop to Asylum” at the entrance to the Municipality of Mladenovac.

On Monday, 6 October 2014, the protest was organized in front of the municipal building in Mladenovac when the citizens were expressing dissatisfaction with the decision of the Government on transforming the former barracks in Mala Vrbica located nearby Mladenovac into asylum centre. What is particularly worrying is the fact that the protest was supported by the representatives of local authorities, which contributes to spreading of xenophobia and direct undermining of the state obligation to provide the protection of the right to asylum.

In most cases, asylum seekers pass through Serbia running away from war conflicts, grave violations of human rights hoping to be able to attain basic living conditions and return their dignity in some EU country. Asylum seekers in Serbia are exposed to continuous verbal and physical assaults of local citizens and they are facing the lack of accommodation and problems during the whole asylum procedure even though according to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as of 1948 everyone has the right to seek and enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution. Praxis also reminds that the Constitution of the Republic of Serbia guarantees the right to asylum to every foreign national with reasonable fear of prosecution.

Praxis calls on competent state bodies to take measures against those who spread hatred and intolerance and who prevent the exercise of the right to asylum and state from fulfilling its obligations under the international laws, Constitution and Law on Asylum. Also, Praxis calls on state bodies to remove the posters “Stop to Asylum” and thus send a clear message that prevention of providing accommodation to asylum seekers is unacceptable.

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