[ 03. May 2011 ]

Report from Frontex deportation to Lagos and Kinshasa

Blockade @ Steenokkerzeel 127bis

On 28/04/2011 a Frontex deportation flight with 54 Nigerians and Congolese left from Melsbroek military airport (near Brussels Airport) to Nigerian capital Lagos and then Kinshasa.


The migrants were 39 Nigerians and 15 Congolese, included 15 from Belgium and others from France, the United Kingdom, Poland, Ireland and Sweden (Netherlands and Norway were also mentioned in earlier media reports). There were in total about 200 people on board (two escorts per migrant, some police bosses, a medical team, psychologists, an immigration official, additional air crew and inspectors who had to see that everything went by the book). The plane was an Airbus A330 of the Belgian army.

One day before the expulsion some 50 people held a demonstration at the Brussels International Airport and on the morning of the eviction 20 people protested at the migrant detention centre at Steenokkerzeel 127bis, where the 54 migrants were staying. Ten of activists had chained themselves to block the gate of the center, but eventually the police arrested all the protesters.