On Saturday 29th June, from 14:00 to 19:00, Personne n’est illégal – Luxembourg are organising a Manifestival – a solidarity event in front of the centre fermé / migrant detention centre, close to the Findel Business Centre, less than a kilometre from the airport terminal (see map below). All are welcome!
14h30 – Welcome
14h40 – Chorale des Sans Nom
15h00 – Faso Kimou
15h20 – Acoustic Message
15h40 – Tatjana San
16h00 – Los Macoñeros del Sur
16h20 – Balualei
16h40 – Antoine Lemaire
17h00 – Pieter Van de Paverd
17h20 – André Mergenthaler & Miranda Welter
17h40 – Tomás Tello
18h00 – Free jamming until 19h00
There’ll also be food and drink, book and info stands, and a creative workshop for children. This will be a festive, non-confrontational solidarity event. A copy of the official authorisation from the Sandweiler local council is posted below.
Directions to the centre fermé in Findel
From Kalchesbruck: Drive along Route des Trèves towards the airport. When you see the transmission tower on the left-hand side, turn left into the small street (“Am Haff”) between the Findel Business Centre and the tower, and you will find a parking area on the left, opposite the tower, just before the centre fermé.
From the airport: From the airport roundabout, take the exit towards Luxembourg Gare (Route de Trèves). Drive for around 1 kilometre, passing Hotel Ibis and Aral on your right. Do not take the road towards Neudorf. After passing the transmission tower on the right, turn right at the Ferrero logo, into the small street named “Am Haff”. You will find a parking area on the left, opposite the tower, just before the centre fermé.
On foot: Take bus 9 or 114 from the Gare Centrale, stopping at “Findel, Business Centre”.
Imagine a world where human freedom of movement is not proportional to the GDP of one’s nation state, to the geographical coordinates of one’s birthplace, or to the melanin content in one’s skin. Where people are not punished for the heinous ‘crime’ of crossing a national border. Where people are not treated as commodities, forced into the trap of trafficking and exploitation, by a system that “illegalises” people according to the whims and prejudices of national governments. Imagine a world that can call itself round, as opposed to a complex polyhedron whose shape and size differ according to one’s origins or papers.
It may sound like utopia, but it’s not that far away, we’re just a little ahead of our time. For the children, women, and men who have found themselves imprisoned in one of the 400+ migrant detention centres that have mushroomed within and around the Schengen borders over the past twenty years, imagining a borderless world is vital, and the wait is dragging on for too long. Between utopia and global apartheid, what would you choose? As Eduardo Galeano explains in his book Walking Words, “Utopia is on the horizon. When I walk two steps, it takes two steps back. I walk ten steps, and it moves ten steps further away. What is utopia for? It is for this, for walking.”
Still, for those locked away in the detention centres, the horizon beyond the fence remains static, a line devoid of hope, a word with little meaning. Words are what make us human, and yet they are freer than their creators. The Greek words from which utopia and horizon derive did not require a passport, nor to pay any duty, in order to cross the Adriatic, the Alps, the Rhine and the Moselle. In the case of the word horizon, there has been a slight but significant shift in meaning: whereas the Greek horizein meant “to limit, divide, separate”, the modern horizon has become a symbol of hope and possibility. For how long will we continue to let national borders and detention centres snatch the dawn away from the horizon?
We’d like to restore that hope on the horizon, not only in words, but in what is perhaps the most universal of languages: music. On Saturday 29th June from 14:00 to 19:00, in front of the Findel detention centre, we’ll be holding a Manifestival – a festive, non-confrontational solidarity event, to which all are invited. A series of concerts, expressing our solidarity with the people detained behind the fence. There’ll also be food and drink, book and info stands, and a creative workshop for children. The aim is to raise spirits, to celebrate our diversity, and to send a positive message, in favour of human dignity, softer borders, and a path toward global citizenship and freedom of movement for all.
Faites de la musique, pas des centres fermés! If you’re in or anywhere near Luxembourg on 29th June, come and join us!
Keen ass illegal / Personne n’est illégal – Campagne contre le centre fermé au Findel
Issue 1 of Le monde n’est pas rond includes a highly informative 3-page article about conditions within the Findel detention centre, written by independent journalist and activist Nathalie Oberweis, with photographs by Patrick Galbats. (Originally published in Kulturissimo in April 2012, revised and updated.)