Around 300 students, workers and others protested outside the Home Office in central London today, Wednesday, in defence of international students at London Metropolitan University.
Up to 3,000 London Met international students have been told to find new courses or leave the country after a shock decision by the UK Border Agency (UKBA) to revoke their visas.
Bello Lukman from London Met student union told Socialist Worker, “It’s very distressing. People have paid their life savings and have been left with nothing.
“It’s also disproportionate. If UKBA found that a worker in Tesco doesn’t have right to be here, they don’t deport the whole workforce.”
Tahera Huda is a placement tutor at London Met. “We offer opportunities to people who wouldn’t have access to education otherwise,” she said.
She was angry at claims from the government that the London Met international students had not been attending classes. “One of my students got a first in a module I taught him. How dare they say that students don’t turn up?”
Ifesinschi, an international student who has just graduated from London Met, showed Socialist Worker a copy of her attendance record that proved she was regularly attending classes. “The government is making a scapegoat of London Met,” she said.
A large group of protesters marched to Downing Street from the Home Office. UCU and Unison trade union branches at London Met, together with the student union, have called for solidarity protests at every college and university on Friday lunchtime next week.
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