1 December 2017

Maastricht locals start petition for Afghan teenager and family facing deportation

The local Maastricht community has started a petition to stop the Dutch government from sending back Afghan teenager Haroon and his family.

Afghan teenager and refugee Haroon (left), with Dave Sheehan (right) from Amnesty Maastricht

Members of the local community in Maastricht have expressed their strong support for Afghan teenager and refugee, Haroon, who may be sent back to Afghanistan with his family by the Dutch government. In response, Maastricht locals have started a petition to stop the Dutch government from sending them back to dangerous circumstances in Afghanistan.

People from the Limburg city Maastricht have started a petition to stop the Dutch government from sending Maastricht refugee Haroon and his family back to Afghanistan. In just 3 weeks, this initiative has turned into a huge number of people from the local community embracing the family.

The petition has raised almost 18.000 signatures, with the goal to reach 25.000, while the City Council has adopted two separate motions calling on the Ministry for Justice & Security and the Secretary of State for migration and asylum affairs, Mark Harbers, to use his discretion to allow the family to remain in The Netherlands. 

Haroon has enlisted the support of members of the national parliament, which has led to statements and questions at a parliament debate by Groen Links and Socialistische Partij.

“It starts with me, but it should also apply to  all Afghan people in the Netherlands. I’m just a face, because it’s happening with me now. Afghanistan is not safe for anyone going back.” said Haroon

“Solidarity with Haroon is felt by many people  in Maastricht, including several local political parties. Being a volunteer for the Dutch Red Cross and going to school at United World College he really wanted to become a part of the Maastricht community and now this campaign  shows that he succeeded.” Dave Sheehan, of Amnesty Maastricht, was with  Haroon at  the Dutch parliament on Wednesday.

Justice and Peace supports this initiative, please support this strong local initiative as well and sign the petition! https://www.change.org/p/ind-21-days-to-deportation-lets-stop-it