Fighting terrorism is a necessity but it does not justify violating the rights of migrants

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Tunis, November 3, 2020

Fighting terrorism is a necessity but it does not justify violating the rights of migrants

The Tunisian Forum for Economic and Social Rights renews its strong condemnation of the heinous terrorist crime in Nice, expresses its sympathy to the victims and their families, and offers them the most sincere expressions of condolences. Indeed, the Tunisian Forum for Economic and Social Rights affirms its condemnation of terrorism, extremism and all the complicit rhetoric justifying this crime and renews its adherence to human rights and humanitarian values. Today, we also express our concern about the escalation of expressions of hatred towards migrants and toward the organizations defending the rights of migrants and their workers. Terrorism aims to spread fear, hatred, intolerance and isolation. Some parties seek to exploit the concerns and fears of the citizens of the northern shore of the Mediterranean to ensure a political repositioning in favor of their agendas. European governments are also taking advantage of these tragedies to exert more pressure, especially on Tunisia, for more cooperation in the field of forced deportation of irregular migrants. And while the Italian government obtained unlimited Tunisian cooperation with regards to forcible deportation and succeeded in doubling the number of deportees, starting from October 2020 French media sources reported that Tunisia agreed to grant consular permits for the forcible deportation of immigrants from France.

The Tunisian Forum for Economic and Social Rights:

  • Underlines that the necessity to fight terrorism is strengthened by further spreading the values of human rights, solidarity, peace, a culture of acceptance of others, and ensuring freedoms and just cooperation in the Mediterranean
  • Warns against employing the convicted terrorist incident to further pressure Tunisia to cooperate in issues of forcible deportation, border control, setting up immigrant drop-offs platform, and securing immigration issues.
  • Reminds of its fear that these events will be followed by a process of collective punishment of Tunisian immigrants, especially irregulars, in Italy and France, through detention and forced deportation without any legal guarantees.
  • Calls on the Tunisian government not to sign any agreement or pledge that may constitute a serious violation of the rights of migrants in the current circumstances.

As much as the Tunisian Forum for Economic and Social Rights expresses solidarity with France and all victims of terrorism, it renews its adherence to approaches that respect human rights and the rights of migrants.

The Tunisian Forum for Economic and Social Rights

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