Are we refugees or prisoners?

Post Date: Jan 4th, 2015 | Categories: Immigration, Personal Experiences, Refugee Community | COMMENT

Greetings to all friends and readers. I am Aameen and I was born 38 years ago in India. I have been a refugee in Hong Kong for 8 years and I hope this message will be read by all refugees, human rights people, NGO people and lawmakers in Hong Kong. I thank Vision First for offering this opportunity.

Every human being that is free has rights, but refugees are prisoners in Hong Kong because we do not have freedom. We cannot work so we are desperately poor. We cannot live in good place without money. We cannot eat what we like without money. We cannot take bus without money. We cannot phone without money. We cannot even write letter home without money.

Why in Hong Kong the lawmakers treat us worse than prisoners? We cannot rent room or buy any food, water, clothes, shoes and other daily things without money. Here for example, everybody whether they are rich or they are poor, whether they are educated or they are uneducated person, they can choose which toothpaste they prefer. Only refugees and prisoners cannot choose toothpaste flavour!

Refugees in Hong Kong must use all daily things and food what kind the ISS distributor give us. Dear Respectful Lawmaker, why refugees don’t have the right to work to buy what they need? If we are free people, is it not our right to work and buy and use what we need? We are refugees, not prisoners.

In 2011 I was sentenced 15 months prison for working illegally because the ISS didn’t give me the things I need. The Respectful Tuen Mun Court send me to Pik Uk Prison and inside there whatever they give me I use and I follow the rules. I ask the Respectful Lawmaker: Why in prison I can work and buy what I need, but in the outside world I cannot work and buy what I need?

So I politely tell you that even if we live outside with good character, refugees in Hong Kong do not have freedom and are treated worse than prisoners. How we feel freedom if we have no right to work and to buy what we need? Every human being has different choices and every free person has the right to choose. Why then refugees are not free to choose?

It means that for Hong Kong Government the refugees are not human beings. If we consider the world law as good for humanity and to protect human life, why the law in Hong Kong is not good for refugees and does not protect our life? Is this law good for human rights? Is it good for humanity?

So I have these questions for the Respectful Lawmaker: Why you don’t protect refugees? Why you don’t give basic human rights to refugees? Even if we forget about refugees and consider to the simple fact that we are all human beings, why you don’t respect refugees as human beings?

It is very sad that the Hong Kong lawmakers make a big difference between human beings and refugees! I will not request for any visa or work permit, I only and politely request treating refugees with respect as human beings. I ask why refugees don’t have fundamental rights? We always read in the newspaper that dogs and cats have more rights than refugees. Why must this be true?

From my point of view, I cannot understand who they consider refugees in Hong Kong, if refugee have no protection, no work, half assistance, no human rights and no respect. The law in Hong Kong pretends to give us full freedom, home, food and clothes, but we cannot even rent room and get enough food to eat. So please tell us, are we refugees or prisoners?

Dear Respectful Lawmakers, why are your human rights and my human rights separated?

(name, Immigration and contact details provided)

Are we refugees or prisoners
Refugees have their Immigration documents checked frequently. Some complain it happens several times a week by officers who know them, perhaps to stress their extraneousness and otherness in society.



1 Comment

  1. Ailah mehreen khan

    Hongkong must allow refugees to work so they can provide for themsleves even without the government assistance.. because what the government give is totally useless to refugees.. hong kongeese always say they treat people as human but their law with regards to refugees is totally disrespect for them,not because they see their economy increasing they limit people to work, isn’t it more shameful reading news on social media that mcdonalds had become an open room for other refugees to stay for a night, without any food or others.. they conceal their disgusting treatment to refugees.. simple because the government dont have a heart for people but have a heart for MONEY..