This speech was written by Rose and read by Anne at the demo: “Open doors – Open borders! Recognize climate crisis as reason for asylum!” on 20th August 2023 in front of Germany’s Ministry of the Interior:

As I stand here today, the reason for my being in this country is an inconsequential story to the German government. Myself and thousands of other migrants must tell a story. It is not a story enough if it is not about war and persecution.

Well, today I am here to tell a story. A story of persecution caused by CAPITAL GREED. It is a story that Germany and the rest of the Global North does not want to listen to. But, we must tell the story of CLIMATE CHANGE. We must tell the story of climate refugees. We must tell the story of climate justice! The Global North’s “under-development” of the Global South is violence. It is persecution.

Climate change displaces communities, disrupts their livelihoods, and compels people to seek refuge in new lands. People from the Global South are being displaced not only by climate change, but also by zones of carbon capitalism — in the name of “green energy”.

Africa is facing one of the worst droughts in years. The drought has affected about 50 million people in KENYA, ETHIOPIA, and SOMALIA directly and another 100 million. Last year 43,000 people died in SOMALIA due to hunger caused by the impacts of the climate crisis. Nearly half of these were children younger than 5.
This could be the population of four small towns in Germany. Is this cost of inaction not persecution enough?

When women, children and men lose their lives in the Mediterranean Sea because their livelihoods have been destroyed, Europe’s response is to erect more borders, including enhanced sea, air, and land patrols; drone surveillance; and let human beings disappear beneath the waves or set themselves on fire in detention centers.

People are migrating because of the climate change crisis. Borders are not natural divisions between people or just lines on a map, they are mechanisms of CAPITALIST GREED. Borders protect the economic, political, and cultural privileges of colonialism and capitalism.

Border laws create an illusion that those who identify as white can survive climate catastrophe by controlling the movement of persons classified as non-white. Climate-displaced persons are depicted as threats to national security.

Are you not experiencing it all here in Germany? The heat waves, wildfires and floods? No borders can stop this reality. Climate change knows no borders.

The national security response classifies “climate refugees” as barbarians crashing the gates of civilization. Climate refugees are not criminals! Climate crisis is a reason for seeking Asylum. Climate refugees must be granted asylum!

Granting migrants of the climate crisis asylum is not an act of charity, it is taking responsibility for CARBON CAPITALISM. Climate migrants are victims of climate change produced by YOUR industrialized economies: It is your fuel industries that poison the air, land, and water.

To feed itself Africa and most of the Global South is told to adopt ‘climate smart strategies’. What is smart about displacing thousands of people to fire up Europe’s ‘green economy agenda’? Let us pause for a moment and think about the “slow violence” of Germany’s carbon capitalism. Think about communities living in the shadow of polluting petrochemical facilities and power plants.

Climate change is not a technical issue, it is a social issue that calls to end extractive colonial and racial capitalism.

Climate displacement is an injustice, “not a random, faultless act of God.” Climate crisis is a reason for asylum.