Next to the AZC (asylum seeker center) there is the practice place for shooting, as an old result of the military camp it is used to be. The place is used 6 times a week by police, militaries and shooting clubs. Sometimes there is a shooting tournament.
Requests to stop the shooting, at least as long as war refugees live in the same complex, were ignored by the responsible ministries.
Child from Kosovo:
Every time I hear POW POW POW I hide myself but my mother tell me they will not come.
Woman form Iran:
My child is afraid in Crailo. When he hears the shooting he thinks that the soldiers will come and grab him and his father, just like than.
Girl from Sarajevo:
We all became crazy in Sarajevo. Now I live in Crailo. I walked with a friends and a small path. They started to shoot. We had no idea where to hid
Man & Woman from Bosnia:
Our village is bombed for 5 month, We hear the sounds from Bosnia, every day. When they shoot hard we are shaking in our room in Crailo.
A child from Somalia:
When there is heavy shooting she cries all day. Her father said to the doctor it was because of the shooting. the doctor gave medicines to sleep.
It is not going well with John from Liberia. In the crèche he is sitting still in the corner, being very quite. He doesn’t play, he doesn’t say anything, sometimes he opens his mouth as if he is going to scream but not sound comes out. 'Is John autistic, are his eyes all right, can he hear?' the doctor wonders. ‘My son is not blind of deaf, mother Jane said desperately when visiting the doctor. A small test proves the mother is right. But john has seen too much from his hiding place in Liberia, where the soldiers shot his grandparents. John is too small to realize that he is safe here. And every time an explosion happen on the shooting place next doors, he thinks he’s in Liberia, in the war. Shooting means killing grandparents and his little head can not cope with that. When the children play outside john pulls his coat over his head and puts his arms in the air as if he is a weird kind of scarecrow. When I visit his room the only thing I see is two little feet from under his bed. Sometimes we sit against each other for a while, he has closed eyes and both of us don’t speak.
Christian, that funny fatty guy from Zaire hasn’t been seen in the crèche for several weeks now. It is October, The season with sniffing, coughing and pain in the ears has started. Perhaps Christian is sick? Where is Christian? I asked the mother of Fabrice who live next doors Christian in Building A. “It happened at 4 in the morning. They had to come . right away. There were 5 police man at the door. Christian, three years old, there always laughing mother and the baby sister wrapped up in a towel. They could dress themselves but take nothing else, not even napkins for the baby. They couldn’t call the layer. To the airplane. back to Zaire. “This is the Policy”, is me being told when I complain at the direction of AZC Crailo. That night I see the war in Zaire, moving soldiers, hunger, dead people, on television. Could I find Christian between the mass of people who are running frightened for the violence.
“In Zaire everything is safe” said the message from the ministry of justice.
Genocide is not a nature disaster. The questions about genocide and violation of Human Rights. Conference in October 1996, organized by the Ministry of foreign affairs, Medicine sans frontiers, Clingendael institute, IKV and so on. There are many foreign guests, from all the hot spots in the world.
How can you avoid escalation of international conflicts. It seems that sending an international peaceforce is supported by most of the emissaries. The emissary of Rwanda has an other idea. He says:’ In stead of sending militaries we should send an army of shrinks, because the conflicting parties are sick.”
Adnan, an ex bosnian soldier who does not want to fight anymore, comes in for a cup of coffee. ‘How are you?’, a volunteer worker asks. ‘A little bad. You are difficult people’ He says. “I say that I think that serbians are difficult people. He shakes his had. “No they are all as bad’ He shouts. “ Do you know what it is when you are sleeping and your neighbors come to kill you? What do you think, those fascists in my country. They don’t stay there, they will also cross the border. If there will be war in Europe, also in Holland, and you will not see this anymore, but your grandchildren will, than I’m going to stand and watch. Like you are doing now to us. And do nothing!”
We are silent. to this we have nothing to say. powerless, pent-up wrath, sadness, it all comes out.
Adnan lives in Crailo in one caravan with a Croat an serbian and a Hungarian from Vojvodina.
“In the day time we do our best to get along well. We drink coffee together, we eat, talk. But my caravanmates tell me that I speak loud when I dream, that I will attack the Croats and the Serbs. That is hard. It is stuck in my head.”
For exhibiting the pictures of the children I need first permission from the parents. This time it is the turn to the parents of Lidia from Angola. Antilles music comes from the speakers. The music swings through the naked and paintless room. Before I can ask my request dad says: First we dance. So we dance around the room, examined by mother Fatima, She said I dance well. It is great to forget the Crailo trouble for a second and feel sunny and happy. And about those pictures? ‘Sure! put them on. C’est genial! But promise you always come back to me to dance!”