Syrians march and demand asylum in Switzerland

It’s about the children.

Looks to me like the Syrian refugees who have taken to the streets in Bern demanding asylum are getting professional community organizing help in crafting their message.

Syrians: We have the right to live in Switzerland! Of course the photo is from!

We’ve reported before about the growing tension in Switzerland where the Swiss are world famous for holding on to their ‘Swiss-ness’ (Not a word I know!).  Here are two recent post (click here and here).

So it’s no surprise that, as this article (Truth out) reports, their marching went largely unnoticed by the Swiss public:

BERN, Switzerland — Due to Syria’s civil war and the refugee crisis it has produced, the political standoff between asylum-seekers in Switzerland and the government body tasked with deciding their status — the Bundesamt für Migration (BFM), or Federal Migration Office — has in the last week become a standoff in a very real sense.

Since September 9, Syrian refugees impatient with what in many cases has been the BFM’s years-long lack of response to their needs have been braving the autumnal chill in an improvised camp in front of the office’s main building in Bern. Eleven of the upwards of 100 demonstrators began a hunger strike on Saturday.

The asylum-seekers — many of whom have been in Switzerland since the onset of the Syrian revolution in 2011, or longer, and around 40 of whom are children — have resolved not to leave until their status is officially decided.


The march was headed by children from the camp, one of whom sat on his father’s shoulders and gleefully led chants, in German using a megaphone, like, “We love Switzerland but Switzerland doesn’t love us. ”The moving spectacle went almost unnoticed by locals as the march wound its way through quiet neighborhoods and empty parklands along the police-approved route, from the far-flung BFM towards the Bern city center.

Sounds like Helin went to the Barack Obama International School of Communist Community Organizing!

“These children want to go to school. If they could, they would go tomorrow,” intoned Helin, a young Syrian woman who has been in Switzerland for five years [before the Syrian civil war?—ed] and has what is known as a B-permit (non-permanent residence). She has been working as a translator and liaison for the activists. “Look at them, they have a life, they have rights,” she said of the children. “Give them a future.”

See (what else!) for the photo and more!

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