ALİ SALTAN - ARAF
Being a refugee or an asylum seeker in Turkey, particularly for Afghan refugees, is a vicious process full of enigmas in which the future is unpredictable. Afghan asylum seekers, whose numbers have reached half a million, declare that the procedures applied for other asylum seekers and refugees are not implemented for them. These people, who have taken refuge in Turkey, due to the ongoing civil war in their homeland, human rights violations, and probably because they run out of their reasons to live there, are waiting for their turn, with the hope of building a new future in another country.
These people have been waiting here to settle in a third country for over 10 years. Some of them lost their families, some of them died within this period, and some who came to Turkey at their mother’s knee and became adults here have been tested with poverty, discrimination, and death, every day. Their status deprives them of educational, social, economic spheres. The hope of going to any European country or another country where they can live a decent life on the one hand, suppresses their suffering and makes it bearable but on the other, turn the fragilities of their living conditions into habits. The state of living by waiting for the day when the doors will open to them seems to carry the Afghan refugees to Araf (Limbo), the land of people waiting to enter the house of ‘god’ and ‘be approved’ as described in the scriptures. As rootless, placeless, without past and presence, and with their faces turned to the future, they have been waiting for their acceptance documents for going to a third country.