Socialist Worker

International students win a reprieve at London Met

by Sadie Robinson
Issue No. 2322

Up to 3,000 international students at risk of deportation could be allowed to continue their studies at London Metropolitan University, a court has ruled.

A UK Border Agency (UKBA) decision last month revoked London Met’s licence to teach students from outside the European Union. Yet a High Court judge ruled on Friday of last week that the university can seek a judicial review into the decision.

Mr Justice Irwin’s decision gives a reprieve to existing students and those due to start this year. Those who are already here and have full immigration status can remain at London Met, pending resolution of the issue.

Mark Campbell is chair of the UCU union at London Met and has been campaigning for an amnesty for international students under threat.

He told Socialist Worker, “The judge has effectively given a full amnesty to all existing students to continue their studies at London Met.

“Those who have been offered a place can begin their studies too. This goes a long way to meet our demand for an amnesty for all international students at London Met.” But Mark stressed that this was “just the first step in the battle”.

London Met unions have called a march from London Met’s Tower Building on Holloway Road to a rally at Highbury Fields. The protest begins at 1pm on Friday of this week.

The UCU and Unison unions at London Met are demanding that the board of governors issue a statement welcoming international students. Mark said that London Met’s controversial link with the London School of Business and Finance (LSBF) played a role in the university’s current crisis.

UKBA based its decision on a sample of just 101 students. It claimed more than a quarter didn’t have permission to be in Britain.

Campaigners to keep the Women’s Library in its purpose-built home in east London rallied last Saturday.

The London School of Economics is the sole bidder for the library and wants to move the collection to Holborn in central London. Campaigners say that the library must remain in Whitechapel with strong links to local schools.

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Tue 25 Sep 2012, 18:30 BST
Issue No. 2322
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