On the anniversary of the final takeover of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan, Diakonia Germany published in English their monitoring study from June 2021: “Experiences and Perspectives of Deported Afghans in the Context of Current Afghan Political and Economic Developments”.

It has been a year since the last regions of Afghanistan were seized by the Taliban. Millions feared them but hoped that the new Taliban would somehow be more concerned about their legitimacy and, therefore, more receptive to popular demands, more representative and eager to achieve international recognition or simply interested in assuring the sheer survival of the Afghan people. However, any hopes were crushed while life in Afghanistan fundamentally changed for the worse.

Afghanistan expert Friederike Stahlmann documented the experiences of 113 of the 908 Afghans who were deported from Germany between December 2016 and March 2020. Nearly all the deportees experienced violence and cruelty as they were often regarded as collaborators and spies for the West, leaving them isolated and excluded from society. These widely held beliefs put them at even greater risk of persecution and poverty. Nonetheless, despite enduring incredible hardship, many still fight to create a peaceful and civil life.

“It is clear that very many people break down because of the violence. And this struggle for survival comes at high costs, has many victims, and leaves scars, for individuals and within society. But the fact that so many nevertheless defy the violence and do not give up hope in the face of these devastating circumstances but get up every morning to look for new ways to somehow provide for themselves and their families, makes one very, very humble.” –  Friederike Stahlmann.

Diakonia Germany joins many other organizations in calling on the German government to make every effort to protect people in danger of persecution. It also calls for improving and expanding protection procedures such as family reunification with refugees, local enforcement procedures, individual humanitarian admission, and the necessary resettlement procedure via the UNHCR from neighbouring countries.

Read the report here.