Socialist Worker

Refugee


Blunkett condemns Ahmadis to new agony

24 August 2002
DAVID BLUNKETT, the home secretary, lied through his teeth to get a refugee family deported at top speed from Britain. That scandal was revealed last week in a Home Office letter about the Ahmadi family, who fled from Afghanistan to Britain last year. The letter was a key piece of evidence used in a court hearing on Tuesday of last week.

Jenin faces a new struggle for the truth

10 August 2002
REPORTS OF war crimes began circulating within days of Israeli tanks rolling into the Palestinian refugee camp of Jenin in April this year. There were dozens of eyewitness accounts of people buried alive as their homes were bulldozed, and of women and children shot dead in the streets. The friends and families of the victims had to wait for four months until the UN produced a report on events in Jenin. The report has serious weaknesses.

Home Office report trashes Labour's lies

10 August 2002
THE KEY myths about refugees in Britain have been trashed in a recent report that was commissioned by the Home Office. Vaughan Robinson and Jeremy Segrott from the University of Wales produced the report that investigates why asylum seekers end up in Britain. The report takes on the arguments poured out by press and politicians that refugees flock to Britain because it is a "soft touch".

Woomera anti-detention protests: a great escape

03 August 2002
OVER 1,000 protesters converged on the Woomera detention centre for refugees in the south Australian desert last Easter. This video is an inspiring account of what happened. Woomera is one of six privately run camps used by the Australian government to detain all "illegal entrants".

Outrage as refugees dragged from mosque

03 August 2002
IMMIGRATION MINISTER Beverley Hughes ordered a police deportation squad to smash down the doors of a West Midlands mosque and snatch two traumatised asylum seekers on Thursday of last week. The abduction of Farid and Feriba Ahmad has created outrage.

Anti-deportation

27 July 2002
ANTI-DEPORTATION campaigners will be holding a vigil at the Home Office in London next Thursday to highlight the case of Aziz Ahmed and his family. Aziz, a political refugee from East Africa, has been held in detention for over a year, in four different centres.

Refugees

13 July 2002
THE DUMAN family's claim for asylum was refused on Thursday 4 July. They are to be deported to Germany on Wednesday morning, 10 July. The Dumans' solicitor is making further representations. The family had left Turkey because, as Kurds, they had suffered years of harassment.

Refugees

06 July 2002
PROTESTERS OPPOSED to the government's treatment of refugees lobbied a Labour Party regional policy forum in Canterbury last Saturday. The meeting was attended by around 80 invited party members, three Kent Labour MPs and transport minister John Spellar. Tom MacGowan, a spokesperson for Kent Committee to Defend Asylum Seekers (CDAS), said, "We handed out an open letter calling for opposition to racist government policies on asylum seekers.

In brief

06 July 2002
Morris: fight for refugees BILL MORRIS, leader of the TGWU union, again attacked New Labour's policy over refugees last week. He said at the union's Irish conference:

Out to pile on more agony for refugees

29 June 2002
TONY BLAIR used the European Union summit in Seville last weekend to drive through more attacks on asylum seekers. Before the summit Blair announced that he wanted to "force the pace of change" on asylum to make life even harder for desperate refugees. "Tony Blair gets on better with the centre-right leaders than with his comrades on the left," said the Financial Times.

Refugees are not 'swamping' here

22 June 2002
THE WAR against refugees intensified again this week. Home secretary David Blunkett welcomed the election of a Tory government in France because he believes it will crack down on asylum seekers. Tony Blair is meeting European leaders at Seville to organise warships to sink refugee boats. He also wants European states to slash aid to the poor countries that refugees flee from.

Refugees

15 June 2002
KURDISH ASYLUM seekers are on hunger strike outside the Plymouth headquarters of the National Immigration Office. The protest started on Thursday 6 June following repeated attempts to obtain a hearing and acknowledgement of asylum rights.

'We're standing up for refugees'

15 June 2002
"SOME people coming to Britain are denounced as economic migrants, yet economic migrants from all over the world are encouraged to be doctors and nurses to fill the gaps." So says former Labour MP TONY BENN.

Scapegoat Britain

15 June 2002
APARTHEID FOR children-that is what David Blunkett pushed through the school system this week. The government wants refugee children educated separately from the rest. They will be treated as second class and labelled as "problems", and then blamed for the crisis in schools.

Make 22 June a huge protest for refugees

08 June 2002
THE FROZEN bodies of 19 asylum seekers were found last week buried under snowdrifts in the remote mountains of south east Turkey. The unidentified refugees included nine children found next to their mothers. All died for the hope of a better life in another country. There will be more tragic deaths if New Labour's home secretary David Blunkett gets his way.

Why it's racist to attack refugees

01 June 2002
NEW LABOUR claims that being hard on refugees and immigrants "is not racist". The Sun newspaper repeated this argument when it praised the government's tough asylum policy last week. Many of those who disagree with the Sun nevertheless echo some of these arguments.

Stop the witchhunt against refugees

01 June 2002
Myth 1: Britain is flooded with refugees

Breaking down the myths on refugees

25 May 2002
"ASYLUM-VILLAGE invaded." "We just can't keep them out." These are just some of the scare stories over asylum seekers that have recently appeared in the British press. Below we expose the myths and argue why refugees should be welcome in Britain.

New Labour repeats racists' lies...and it's the far right who gain

25 May 2002
NEW LABOUR ministers are repeating the lies of the racists and the far right. They say there are too many refugees and immigrants in Britain. But the numbers applying for asylum last year amounted to a minuscule 0.12 percent of the population.

Refugees

18 May 2002
TWO demonstrations to highlight opposition to New Labour's attacks on refugees are planned next month. The protests came out of the 350-strong conference in Manchester in March that gathered together campaigners for refugees from across Britain.

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