With the passing of the EU ‘returns directive’ last week (see also
http://www.outrageousdirective.org/ ), it is encouraging to report on two actions, one in Belgium and one in Denmark that defy state treatment of would-be refugees and migrant workers.
DENMARK: Stop the Deportations ( http://www.stopudvisningerne.blogspot.com/ ) is a network that has emerged in Copenhagen as an answer to the unacceptable practise of sending people back to the turmoil in Iraq. Stop the Deportations has lately, on several occasions protested and made blockades in Kastrup airport in order to stop the deportations. We have succeeded in raising awareness and public debate about the issue and we are – with inspiration from the campaigning all over Europe, planning future actions. One day in the third week of July week 30 we will act specifically against Lufthansa. See previous action against deportation at Copehagen. Airport. May 28th 2008: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pnbbk4-4wBQ
BELGIUM: On Saturday 28th of march, 22 refugee-activists blockaded the gates of the closed detention centre in Merksplas (Belgium). The group, Mindy’s Mega Blockade, locked the two gates where mini-vans transport the refugees in and out of the centre. The gate for the staff and visitors wasn’t blocked. From seven o’clock in the morning ten activists used tubes to link their arms trough the two gates, while one activist, dressed up as Mega Mindy (a very popular female superhero in a dutch television series) climbed up the wall of the closed detention centre. Encouraged by the detained refugees they kept up the blockade until 2 o’clock in the afternoon. Not a single van could bring refugees to the airport or inside the detention centre. The action group informed the police of the blockade, but the police didn’t arrest the activists. The action was broadcasted through all the media in Flandres (the dutch-speaking part of Belgium) on Saturday. The activists said they wanted to shut down the deportation machinery, raise awareness about the detention of children and strengthen the debate about closed dention centres. See photos on : http://ovl.indymedia.org/news/2008/06/23371.php
Note that UK, which implements an indefinite detention period, did not opt-in to the Returns Directive which lays down a maximum period of custody of six months & can be extended by a further 12 months in certain cases. The detention of human beings for any period is of course unacceptable to No Borders.
Continue reading European actions against detention & deportation
A moving video which speaks for more action: Independent video of the demo – interviews, speechs, march in the rain, support from students & co-workers, phone call with Hich in detention centre, etc.
Hich on mobile phone: “thank you … and hopefully we can all join in another demonstration to celebrate my release … you are a credit to Nottingham, a credit to Nottingham University, and a credit to students and student activism, and community activism”.
Free Hicham Yezza!
Continue reading Independent video of demonstration in support of Hicham Yezza and Academic Freedom
*THURSDAY 19 JUNE – PUBLIC MEETING: Refugees in a Global Era. Speaker: Phil Marfleet.
Venue: The Square Centre, Alfred Street North. Time: 7pm. ALL WELCOME.
*SATURDAY 21ST JUNE – FUNDRAISING EVENT: International food tasting event
Venue: The Vine Community Centre, Bobbersmill Rd, Hyson Green. Time: 7-10pm. Tickets: £20
*SUNDAY 22 JUNE: ?They Don?t Want to Learn English?. Come and celebrate and learn more about the issues faced by refugees and people seeking asylum who are English learners.
Venue: Sneinton. Time: 6.15 ? 8pm. FREE EVENT. Contact: 07905 298137
Continue reading NOTTINGHAM REFUGEE WEEK UPCOMING EVENTS
By coincidence the bail hearings of two high-profile Nottingham detainees both took place today via video links from Dover citadel (for Hicham Yezza) and Campsfield in Oxfordshire (for Amdani Juma). These hearings were to allow them to be released from detention while they fight their respective immigration cases. Latest news – after 31 days inside and one deportation flight cancelled, Hich is bailed! (although Home Office tried to make out he should be kept locked up because he has no ‘absence of close ties’ to the UK – clearly nonsense). Amdani’s hearing finished a couple of hours later and he is also bailed (in spite of HO opposition) after 18 days and two cancelled deportation flights. Hoorah!!
See also: Land of no return. Article in Guardian newspaper on Jun 13th 2008 about community anti-deportation campaigns.
Continue reading SUCCESSFUL Immigration bail hearings for Hich and Amdani on 16th June 2008 – but campaigning continues
A protest NO DEPORTATIONS TO ZIMBABWE has been called by the Nottingham Zimbabwe Community Network on Friday 27th June at 4pm in Nottingham Old Market Square. Come and join it!
Read an Indymedia report following the showing of Zimbabwe film FLAME at the Sumac Centre on 18th June. Also find more NZCN news on the new blog-site:
Refugee Week 2008 events listing (14th ? 22nd June):
Continue reading No deportations to Zimbabwe – protest in Nottingham Fri 27th June
LATEST NEWS 19 June (BBC Oxfordshire):
7 detainees escape from Campsfield overnight.
Information about the most recent riot on June 14th by those who are sick of being detained, can be found on Indymedia (Migration section):
Those of us on the outside show our solidarity with those who are locked up for no other reason than their being born on other soil. More of these centres are being built in Britain and elsewhere, whilst the EU (through the ‘returns directive’) considers that 18 months detention should be considered normal. The fight to close these centres must be stepped up. See Migreurop website for a map of immigration prisons and ‘camps’ across Europe. Also read (in their own sickening words) how GEO group, the company who run Campsfield, see incarceration of human beings in terms of profit for their shareholders and are so proud of their listing on the New York Stock Exchange.
Continue reading Another riot at Campsfield (Oxfordshire) detention centre – 14th June 2008 (& escapes a few days later)
Nottingham No Borders is sad and angry ? very angry – to have to report the death of Masivi Olido. We are proud to have demonstrated side by side with him for the rights of asylum seekers and to raise awareness in Nottingham of the situation faced by Congolese people that the British state is trying to deport. Too many people are dying in this system, through neglect and worse. In Masivi’s case, very few of us even knew he was ill. We knew him as a fighter. There are questions to be answered here, but in the short term the Congolese community is looking to dignify his memory and help his family a little, so we hope people visiting our site will give a little money and circulate this appeal. Look out for his picture in our random gallery and remember him with us.
URGENT FINANCIAL APPEAL TOWARDS THE FUNERAL COSTS OF MASIVI OLIDO WHO DIED SUDDENLY ON SATURDAY 9TH AUGUST 2008
Let’s dignify MASIVI OLIDO and do good deed as he did for many people. MASIVI OLIDO, a 36 year old young man with a big heart full of compassion died suddenly on Saturday 9th August. Masivi was an active member of the Nottingham Congolese Community, and a member of MPR, who came to the UK and claimed asylum when the Mobutu regime was replaced by Kabila and Rwandan rebel forces in wars that have made the DR Congo one of the most dangerous places on earth. The Home Office sent him to Nottingham in 2001 where he lived until his last hour.
At the moment we need to make sure we have enough funds to bury him in a dignified way. He will be buried according to his cultural tradition. He must look smart as he always used to be.
We need to raise enough funds for this to happen. The funeral costs are estimated to be more than £2,500 We also need to make a one-off donation to his two children, his wife and his elderly mother.
Please click on ‘read more’ to find out more and how to donate to the appeal.
Continue reading Remembering Masivi Olido
The official launch of Refugee Week takes place on Saturday but we are kicking off early on FRIDAY 13TH JUNE with a public meeting, food and live music at the SUMAC Centre in Forest Fields. Small World Kitchen and No Borders present an evening of discussion, traditional African vegan food and live music from Ngoma, starting with the meeting at 6.30pm (food at 8pm, music from 9). More details and directions can be found in the Sumac/Veggies events diary: http://www.veggies.org.uk/event.php?ref=1319
Continue reading Notts Refugee Week programme begins with No Borders night @ Sumac on Friday 13th June: MEETING / FOOD / MUSIC
Invitation to a Radical History Discussion – open meeting:
Resistance in the UK’s Detention Centres in the Last Decade
Date & Time: Tuesday 24 June 2008, 7 pm.
Venue: T&G, Transport House, 128 Theobald’s Road, London, WC1X 8TN Map.
Also in London on Monday 16th June, details on http://www.outrageousdirective.org/
Demonstrate at 12 noon outside the London office of the European Commission at 8 Storey’s Gate, SW1P 3AT [Map] against the “Return Directive” to be voted on by the European Parliament on 17th or 18th June 2008 which will allow EU member states to:
* Detain non-EU migrants for up to 18 months
* Detain and deport migrants including vulnerable people, unaccompanied minors (under 18 years of age) and pregnant women
* Expel unaccompanied minors and other migrants to a country where they have neither family nor legal support
* Ban an expelled migrant from re-entering any part of the EU for up to 5 years (although UK is already looking at making this 10 for some deportees, see:
See also: Shut Down EU Migrant Hunters! – Actions against Frontex
Continue reading In London: Radical history open meeting about asylum seeker revolt on Tues 24 June + demo against EU Return Directive on Monday 16 June
Amdani Juma’s deportation flight to Burundi via Nairobi on Kenya Airways flight KQ101 was cancelled at zero hour on Tuesday June 10th as an application for an judicial review, accepted by the High Court, was finally acknowledged. No thanks to the Home Office who could have ended his misery by discretion without forcing him to go through another court hearing (and still could), or to the immigration enforcement unit who kept him waiting until the last minute.
Supporters visited him all afternoon at Colnbrook immigration removal centre (run by private contractor Serco with transportation support from Group 4), and stayed well after the flight was seen to take off from Heathrow airport. Amdani’s legal battle to stay has only just begun, and he is not yet out on bail. He was also taken away by the Home Office during visiting this evening and was moved immediately to Campsfield detention centre in Oxfordshire. His bail hearing is set for Monday June 12th in London so he could remain in Campsfield until then, although this is by no means certain. But we can all be relieved and happy he was not on that flight (whilst knowing it was very likely carrying other forced deportees), and we look forward to having him back in Nottingham soon. The campaigning will continue in earnest. More to follow.
Continue reading Amdani’s deportation flight cancelled on day of removal – and moved today to Campsfield