So on the periphery I thought what happened in Greece perhaps may happen in other countries, because it is the same structure – and it happened.
From Greece we moved to Geneva, just for an overnight rest, and the moment they came to know my name they said, “No way! We cannot allow him into our country.” I was not even allowed to get out of the plane.
We moved to Sweden, thinking that people go on saying that Sweden is far more progressive than any country in Europe or in the world, that Sweden has been giving refuge to many terrorists, revolutionaries, expelled politicians, that it is very generous.
We reached Sweden. We wanted to stay overnight because the pilots were running out of time. They could not go on anymore; otherwise it would become illegal. And we were happy because the man at the airport…we had asked only for an overnight stay, but he gave seven-day visas to everybody. Either he was drunk or just sleepy – it was midnight, past midnight.
The person who had gone for the visas, came back very happy that we had been given seven-day visas. But immediately the police came and canceled the visas, and told us to move immediately: “We cannot allow this man in our country.”
They can allow terrorists, they can allow murderers, they can allow Mafia people and they can give them refuge – but they cannot allow me. And I was not asking for refuge or permanent residence, just an overnight stay.
We turned to London, because it was simply a question of our basic right. And we made it twice legal – we purchased first-class tickets for the next day. Our own jet was there, but still we purchased them in case they started saying, “You don’t have tickets for tomorrow, so we won’t allow you to stay in the first-class lounge.”
We purchased tickets for everybody, just so that we could stay in the lounge, and we told them, “We have our own jet – and we also have tickets.”
But they came upon a bylaw of the airport that the government or anybody cannot interfere with: “It is at our discretion – and this man we won’t allow in the lounge.”
“In the lounge,” I thought, “how can I destroy their morality, their religion? In the first place I will be sleeping, and by the morning we will be gone.”
But no, these so-called civilized countries are as primitive and barbarous as you can conceive. They said, “All that we can do is, we can put you in jail for the night.”
And just by chance one of our friends looked into their file. They had all the instructions from the government already about how they were to treat me: I should not be allowed in any way to enter into the country, even for an overnight stay in a hotel or in the lounge; the only way was that I should be kept in jail.