Deportation Alarm: mapping the deportation business

In 2021 alone, Germany deported more than 5.484 people on at least 206 mass charter deportation flights. Germany and Frontex spent more than 22.000.000 euros on this cruel and racist practice. We unmask the 18 deportation airlines profiting and provide a comprehensive overview of the German deportation business. The deportation business is a central component of the European Union’s racist border regime. Its implementation is driven by a number of actors from the area of politics and private business. When deporting people, the European Commision and its militarized agency, Frontex, work hand-in-hand with EU Member states and private businesses, such as airlines and travel agencies. Using parliamentary requests, civil society actors and defiant parliamentarians have been able to force the German government to publish the airlines profiting from charter deportations. However, in 2021, the government started classifying this information. The stated reason, as per a 2020 government document: “Publicly naming the airlines that offer repatriation flights [sic!] carries the risk that these companies will be exposed to public criticism and, as a result, will no longer be available to transport persons who are obliged to leave [Germany] to their home countries. This makes repatriation more difficult or even impossible so that state interests […] are negatively affected.” In response to this censorship, Deportation Alarm started to closely monitor and track deportation flights. We use publicly available data to detect deportation flights through the application of a pattern recognition algorithm. We then cross-examine our findings with the redacted versions of the parliamentary requests in order to identify which airlines are responsible for which charter deportations. Our algorithm has caught 204 of the 206 flights in the parliamentary request. Today we are releasing this data to break the silence and re-expose the airlines profiting from the racist deportation business. Crucially, Deportation Alarm also uses this data to provide early warnings against upcoming deportations, hence our name. We were able to provide ealy-warnings for 80% of the flights.

Read more on the website Deportation Alarm