Youth jail’s history of abuse
AN INQUIRY into the racist murder of Zahid Mubarek at Feltham Young Offenders Institution has revealed more abuse at the youth jail. The inquiry heard how warders handcuffed a prisoner, believed to be a foreign national, to his cell bars, pulled down his trousers and smeared black boot polish onto his buttocks.
None of the prison officers disciplined over the incident lost their jobs. All three were still working at Feltham in March 2000 when a racist inmate killed Zahid Mubarek.
In December the inquiry heard how warders stereotyped black inmates as “drug dealers” and violent. A report to the Commission for Racial Equality said some prisoners were referred to as “monkeys” and “black bastards”. It is also alleged that warders ran fights between black and white prisoners.
Israel blocks artists’ travel
THE PALESTINIAN Band for Arts and Folklore was scheduled to perform at the Sallis Benney Theatre in Brighton on this week. But the performance was cancelled due to the Israeli authorities’ refusal to allow the 23 Palestinians to cross the border. Their trip was blocked even though they had all the necessary permits, visas and plane tickets.
Performers, as well as organisers, were greatly disappointed by the last minute cancellation. The event’s aim was to allow Palestinian artists to share their rich cultural traditions with the British public. Brighton and Sussex university student unions spent a year organising this event. Both student unions are hopeful that they can successfully reschedule the event for the near future.
Hundreds come to see Loach
OVER 300 people came to an evening with Ken Loach organised by Tower Hamlets Respect in east London this week. As people came into the meeting they were a little reluctant to take leaflets about Respect, but as they came out of the meeting we ran out of them.
Many people came to see Ken Loach because of his renown as a film-maker. But with George Galloway and Vic Turner (one of the Pentonville Five dockers) speaking, and the showing of Loach’s film Bread and Roses, this was a great way to introduce a new layer of people to Respect.
Glyn Robbins Chair Tower Hamlets Respect