Around 200 non-registered people and supporters walked from Brussels to the Steenokkerzeel detention centre, the “127 bis”, on Sunday morning. This is according to Oscar Flores, the spokesman for the Migrants Front, who organised the march. They want the closure of all such centres in Belgium, which the participants consider “prisons and racist propaganda tools used to reassure certain voters”.
The marchers left the Béguinage church in Brussels around 9am, and had hoped to arrive at the 127 bis centre around 12.30pm.
“There are 5 detention centres in Belgium, which can hold up to 700 people. Today around 8,000 people every year are held in awful conditions in these Belgian prisons for “foreigners”. They are kept there while they wait to be put on the first plane back to the country they came from”, says Oscar Flores.
“If we believe what the State Secretary for Asylum and Migration, Theo Francken, said in October, families with children could soon be sent to detention centres. We feel that the current situation needs us all to unite to fight against radicalism. These prisons are propaganda tools to reassure certain voters”, he concluded.