The following one is the English translation of the statement published by the Coordinamento Migranti after the death of hundreds migrants in the Sicily channel on October 3rd, 2013.
Hundreds migrants dead today add thousands migrants dead in the last twenty years. Besides numbers, these carnages are “normal” since the Europe of Schengen, celebrating the internal freedom of movement, homogenized the system of residence permit while pretending that the countries on the border “filter” migrants’ movement. The true face of Schengen was exposed by the European Council few hours before this carnage took place: Italy is too “sweet” in managing arriving migrants. This discourse is certainly appreciated by the right-wingh parties of Europe but also by the Italian president Napolitano. He is so happy that Italy has a government, that he pretends to govern foreign coasts. The father of the law which paved the way to the Bossi-Fini is consistent with himself, just like the Lega nord – usually racist – and the Movimento 5 stelle, which opposed the jus soli and now reaffirms its State politics by calling an help of European Union in controlling Italian borders.
Far from being a Fortress under attack, the Schengen regime with Frontex impedes migrants to reach Europe legally. Even the possibility of provide help to boat-people is criminalized. It is obvious that every attempt to reach Europe is more and more dangerous. It is obvious that in a globalized world revolutions and conflicts improve the pretence of freedom and migrants movement: migrants have a right to the freedom of movement they conquered with revolutions like the Tunisian one. They have a right to vote with their feet against wars fought in the name of someone else, like the ones in Libia or Syria.
Against every pretence to govern this freedom, what Europe and Italy do not understand is that migrants’ movements do not depend on them. Only the conditions of those movements depend on them. Thus, European countries and their immigration policies are likewise guilty of what is regularly happening. It would be better to avoid believing that Europe should solve this national barbarism. Rather, migrants’ movements tell us that struggles must be transnational to be effective. Perhaps there are no solutions, as the Exterior Ministry Emma Bonino stated. However, to abolish Frontex and to establish the right of reaching freely the Schengen area would avoid the monopoly of transit enjoyed by the people-smugglers. It would be better that those who do not share this political objectives would avoid their condolences.
Perhaps we all agree in acknowledging culprits. However this further carnage forces us to remember not only victims, but also all those migrants who fight every day and who organize themselves in the last years against the laws governing the borders of exploitations. Condolence and rage against this carnage pretend that we acknowledge that migrants are experiencing something more than what is made so dramatically visible by the deaths in the Mediterranean sea. Something more than the systematical and parallel political and media victimization and criminalization. Migrants are experiencing an attempt to regulate and to govern on a transnational scale a new geopolitics and the movements of labour force. This is a global, class struggle and migrants are fighting. What about the others?
Those who pretend to be scandalized again and again can continue this way. Otherwise, it would be better to stop speaking about migrants only when they are dead bodies under the sea, or someone who expresses only particular demands. It would be better to acknowledge that they are throwing down a general challenge.