Girl Expulsion Sparks New Row in France
TEHRAN (Tasnim) - A row erupted over France's treatment of thousands of Roma migrants after a 15-year-old girl was detained by police during a school trip and deported to Kosovo.
Leonarda Dibrani was finishing up a school field trip when French police showed up at the bus, detaining her before she was expelled by the authorities to Kosovo because her family's asylum application had been repeatedly rejected.
The incident, which happened earlier this month but made public on Wednesday by an NGO that campaigns against the expulsion of school-age children, has sparked outrage from immigrant groups who say police went too far in publicly shaming the teenager.
The circumstances surrounding the arrest remained unclear, but both the interior ministry's version and the account of a teacher agree that her arrest did not take place in view of other pupils, Al Jazeera reported.
However, the teacher who gave her account via the Network for Education without Borders (RESF) claimed that the other children were fully aware of what was happening and were deeply distressed by the incident.
"All my friends and my teacher were crying, some of them asked me if I had killed someone or stolen something as the police were looking for me. When the police reached the bus they told me to get out and that I had to go back to Kosovo," said Diprani.
Diprani's father, Reshat, who was expelled to Kosovo a day before his daughter was arrested said that the family had been victimised because of their ethnicity.