Sunday, August 25, 2019


“Madame Hidalgo, you want to award me a medal for my acts of solidarity in the Mediterranean Sea, because our crews ‘work daily to save migrants in difficult conditions.’ At the same time, your police steal blankets from people forced to sleep on the street, while you repress demonstrations and criminalize those who defend the rights of immigrants and asylum seekers. You want to give me a medal for acts that you oppose within your own borders. I’m sure you will not be surprised to see me refuse your Grand Vermeil medal.” was Pia Klemp's response to being offered an honorary prize bestowed by the  mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo.

The former captain of the refugee rescue ship Juventa, continued: 
“Paris, I love you for all of the free people and those in solidarity who live there. People who fight for freedom every day...distributing blankets, friendship and solidarity. I love you for those who share their houses…without worrying about the nationality of people or if they have legal papers or not.”
“Paris, I am not a humanitarian,” the statement continued. “I am not here to ‘help.’ I am in solidarity by your side. We do not need medals. We do not need authorities who decide who is a ‘hero’ and who is ‘illegal.’ In fact, there is no basis for this, because we are all equal.”
“What we need is freedom and rights. It is time to denounce the hypocritical honours and fill in the void with social justice. It’s time for all medals to be thrown like spearheads of the revolution!
 Papers and housing for all! Freedom of movement and residency!”

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