KABUL (SW) – Sattar Mohammadi, an Afghan citizen, has been living in exile in Germany for seven years now.
He was guarding a construction project in Jalriz district of Maidan Wardak province, but a shocking Taliban attack on the district, which left many dead, forced him to leave the country.
Having seen the death from so close, Sattar finds his eyes filled with tears when recalling the bitter memories of the difficult journey to Germany. He, like many others, thought that by leaving Afghanistan they could escape from the horrific memories, but that was not the case.
During the journey, Sattar said he realized that he had made a dangerous decision as soon as he crossed over to Iran from the Nimroz border. It took him agonizing seven hours in the trunk of a car with a couple of strangers without water or eatables to reach Iran.
With an ultimate aim of reaching Germany, Sattar immediately decided to leave Iran for Turkey after stay of a couple of days. In Turkey, he got arrested and eventually imprisoned for illegal stay.
After months in prison, Sattar finally arrived in Bulgaria. This was his first gateway to the perceived ‘paradise’ of many asylum seekers. He breathed a sigh of relief and could not believe his luck, but as soon as he confronted the Bulgarian border police, he forgot the horrors of the past.
Bulgarian police beat and imprisoned him and his accomplices in a way he could not imagine. Sattar said he was imprisoned in Bulgaria for months, but no one approached him or his fellow countrymen who were imprisoned there. Citizens of other countries were soon released from prison as a result of the efforts of their embassies and governments.
After being released from prison in Bulgaria, Sattar finally reached his destination in Germany, but his problems were just beginning.
His asylum case was rejected in the primary court. Being a person who has spent a year on his way to Germany, he got shocked with such a decision that took him to hospital. After recovering, he has been waiting for his next trial for past seven years now.
The constant fear of being deported back to Afghanistan keeps haunting him.
According to the Ministry of Refugees and Returnees, there are about 6.5 million Afghan refugees worldwide, of which 500,000 are refugees and migrants in European countries.