Tag Archives: racism

MAHDI HASHI ON HUNGER STRIKE IN US PRISON

The following is an article just posted on the Channel 4 (UK) website detailing Mahdi’s hunger strike and his now deteriating condition.

We must act now! Protest and take a stand to support this young man’s struggle for freedom!

FREE HASHI NOW! STOP MI5 HARASSMENT! 

Hands off Somalia

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http://www.channel4.com/news/british-somali-terror-suspect-on-hunger-strike-in-us

Channel 4 News has learned a British Somali man imprisoned in the US for alleged terrorism has gone on hunger strike and is now in a “critical condition”, according to his family.

Mahdi Hashi was born in Somalia and grew up in Camden, north London, after his family moved to Britain when he was five, writes Fatima Manji.

The former community worker was controversially stripped of his British citizenship last year after being accused of fighting with al-Shabaab extremists in Somalia.

Mahdi and his father

The 24-year-old now faces the possibility of life in an American jail, without any support from his former home country.

For more than four weeks, Hashi has been on hunger strike, saying his body is all he has left to protest with. In a short phone call to his father on Thursday night he said doctors are now treating him for jaundice, but he remains determined not to eat. Mahdi’s family are growing increasingly fearful over his condition.

The FBI accuses Mahdi of fighting with militant group al-Shabaab in Somalia. It says he took part in weapons training and al-Shabaab’s suicide bombing programme. But Mahdi and his family deny the charges and say he moved to Somalia to start a new life after being harassed by British security services.

I caught up with Mahdi’s father Mohammad Hashi, who still lives here in London.

Trying to recruit

Mohammad Hashi says his son used to work for a community youth group called the Kentish Town Youth Workers, around five years ago. At the time, he says MI5 was constantly trying to recruit him and his friends. Mohammad says at times he was present, when MI5 agents were trying to call his son and that his son “was sick of it”.

In 2009, Mahdi complained to his local MP, Frank Dobson. Mr Dobson confirms he received a complaint from this group and took it to the Home Office, because he was concerned about the methods being employed by the security services against a group he believes were “doing good work to combat extremism and help Somali kids” in the area.

But according to Mahdi’s family the complaints made no difference and as Mahdi kept receiving calls, he decided to leave the UK and begin a new life in Somalia.

Then in summer last year, his family received a letter from the Home Office saying Mahdi was being stripped of his citizenship for being involved in terrorist activity.

The letter came as a shock to the Hashi family. They called Mahdi to tell him the news and urged him to go to the nearest British embassy to appeal.

But shortly afterwards Mahdi vanished. His family were unable to make contact with him and appealed to the Foreign Office to help, but as Mahdi was no longer a British citizen – no help was received.

‘Not involved’

Six months later, the family suddenly found out Mahdi was in prison in New York awaiting trial. The FBI released a statement in December 2012 saying Mahdi was one of three men “apprehended in Africa by local authorities while on their way to Yemen” and had been charged in a “sealed court”.

It alleges Mahdi was “deployed in combat operations to support al-Shabaab action in Somalia”.

Mohammad Hashi says he is confident his son was not involved with al-Shabaab or any other terrorist group while in Somalia. He says Mahdi was staying with his grandmother and he himself visited the house, stayed with him for a month and had not “come across any suspicious things”.

He also believes Mahdi was tortured before being renditioned to the US. The FBI told Channel 4 Newsit has nothing further to add at this stage.

The Hashi family are now appealing against the decision to strip his British citizenship, here in the UK. The Home Office says it can’t comment on the case while this is ongoing.

But as Mahdi remains on hunger strike with little access to his legal team in the UK, his father fears his son stands little chance of being able to make his case.

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Raul Ally was deported last night – the Tanzanian government did not accept him – we are awaiting more information

Originally posted by TCAR tcarblog.blogspot.co.uk/2013/04/raul-ally-was-deported-last-night.html?spref=tw

Raul Ally was deported yesterday evening without warning, without his family and friends being notified, without removal details. This was hours after UKBA asked Raul if he would be able to make his own way back to Newcastle, suggesting he would be released soon. And after family visits for Saturday and an appointment with a solicitor for today had been arranged

Raul Ali's supporters protesting against his detention by UKBA

Raul Ali’s supporters protesting against his detention by UKBA

After 14 days of being on hunger strike and in a weakened state, a member of staff from Colnbrook entered the room and told Raul it was ‘time to go home, time to go back to Tanzania.’ Raul is not from Tanzania and has no connection to it. Shortly after this, 15 hired goons from private security firm Tascor (formerly Reliance and now owned by Capita) entered the room and forcibly carried Raul to the plane.

He was the first person on the plane and they bundled him into the staff room so that any protest he made would not be seen by passengers. Surely the pilot must have known about this treatment and the kidnap of Raul but allowed it to continue. We currently don’t know which airline it was that took him – but will find out and publicise the information.

Raul was taken to Tanzania but the government refused to take him because he is not Tanzanian. We are waiting to find out where he is now and what will happen next. We will keep the blog updated so check back for more information later tonight and tomorrow.

Raul’s family would like to thank everyone for their hard work. We will keep fighting

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HOW RAUL GOT OFF THE FLIGHT. UKBA, KENYA AIRLINES, TASCOR- ALL PART OF THE RACIST MACHINERY

[TCAR blog 16.04.13] While being held in Colnbrook immigration prison Raul has been refused proper medical attention. He has demanded to see a doctor to get health checks during his hunger strike but has been repeatedly refused. When supporters rang the healthcare unit in the prison, they were told that a doctor sees all detainees every morning – this is a lie.

Raul saw a nurse three days ago and it wasn’t until supporters put pressure on Colnbrook and chased up his MP to do the same that a doctor eventually saw him. Callers to the prison were repeatedly told by staff that ‘there is no problem’ as Raul was not being ‘treated differently from anyone else here’. Unfortunately, that is the problem.

Image

Raul Ally – fought off his deportation today

Raul was taken to Heathrow Airport in a van by Tascor private security firm. Tascor are hired by UKBA to ‘escort’ detainees from immigration prisons to the airport. They are the largest private sector provider of this ‘service’ worldwide. Four Tascor men (Mr James Clark, Mr Simon Duke, Mr Gavin Coblem, and one other who went by the name of Matt) tried to get Raul out of the van to bundle him on the flight, deport and dump him in Tanzania.

Raul, despite being on hunger strike for 7 days and in a weak condition, courageously held on to the seat in the van as the four racist thugs attempted to drag him out, they cuffed one of his hands, he continued to struggle, wrapping his legs around part of the van, they then used their fingers to put heavy pressure on his throat and eventually got his other hand cuffed and took him to the plane, leaving his arms cut. His hands are now numb from the cuffs.

They sat him at the back of the plane, still in handcuffs, one guard either side and two in front, the boss of the Tascor mob staring back at Raul in an attempt to keep him quiet. He asked for water but they refused to give him any. Raul did not succumb to this torture or intimidation and found the energy to shout out to the passengers for help.

Passengers were concerned and complained to the staff. They asked what was happening and the security officers told them ‘It’s alright, he is just being removed’. An air stewardess came over to see what was happening. Raul said to her ‘You are a witness to this, they are torturing me.’ She spoke to the pilot who came over and said he was refusing to take Raul on the flight and he should be taken off.

Raul was taken off the plane and is currently being held back in Colnbrook.

Raul’s assailants claimed that Raul had been biting them and they were going to issue a complaint. The boss, at another failed attempt of intimidation, while angrily pointing his finger into Raul’s chest, said ‘This is personal, I’m being serious, if I see anything about what happened or my name in the paper I’m going to sue you.’ Raul looked him in the eye and said ‘I am being serious too.’

Raul is determined to fight and has stated he will remain on hunger strike until he is back in Newcastle.

Tyneside Community Action Against Racism and supporters of Raul bombarded Kenya Airlines with phone calls to demand they did not take him. From the volume of calls they received they took the phones off line until after 8pm (when the flight had left).

Prior to this one of their staff told callers that the Home Office had cancelled Raul’s seat on the flight so there was no need for people to keep ringing in. This was a complete lie and further underlines the complicity of companies such as Kenya Airways in carrying out deportations.

Raul thanks everyone for their help. We need to continue the fight against Britain’s racist immigration laws. Keep checking the blog for updates and ways you can get involved.

Shut down all immigration prisons!

No deportations!

FREE! FREE! RAUL ALLY!

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Stop the deportation of Raul Ally on hunger strike since 10th April

Raul is currently being held in Colnbrook immigration prison to be deported to Tanzania  TOMORROW Wednesday 17th April on flight KQ101 from Heathrow

Take action:

Call Colnbrook to demand his release. Tell them you know he is on hunger strike (for almost a week now) they need to release him so he can get proper medical attention and he is in no fit state to fly.

Tel: 020 86075200
Then press option 1
Then press 310 (healthcare)

Or try:

Tel: 020 86075200
Then press option 1
Then press 354 (UKBA staff in Colnbrook)

Fax: 0208 7597996

Ring Kenya Airlines, flight KQ101 from Heathrow Wednesday 17th, 8pm. Demand that they do not take Raul. He is from Somalia and they are trying to
deport him to Tanzania against his will.

Central Office: 020 8283 1800
Heathrow Office: 020 8759 7366
Passenger reservations: 020 8283 1818
Email: UKres@kenya-airways.com
Fax: 020 82831880

See below for more information:

Monday 15th April Tyneside Community Action Against Racism (TCAR) organised a protest with Raul’s family and friends to demand his release from Colnbrook immigration prison and to halt the deportation set for this Wednesday 17th April.

Over 30 people attended the protest, with banners, placards and speeches and chants on the megaphone linking the racist treatment of asylum seekers and migrants to Britain’s imperialist plunder and pillage around the world, not least in Somalia.

Somalia has been carved up so that its energy resources can be exploited. In a conference on Somalia hosted in London in December 2011 Britain talked of its intention to secure ‘British interests’ in the oil-rich and strategically important region.

Now another conference is to be held in London on 7 May 2013. Ugandan, Burundian, Kenyan, Ethiopian, US, British and French troops have entered Somalia. Activists also protested outside Virgin Money, with several people occupying offices demanding to speak to a manager, highlighting Virgin’s role, with Virgin Atlantic, in deporting asylum seekers.

Raul, 18 years old, fled Somalia when he was 12 and has been living in the north east ever since. This is the second time he has been criminlaised and locked up in an immigration prison. The Home Office are trying to deport him to Tanzania – a country he has never been to and has no connection to. Raul has went on hunger strike because he is making a protest and stated he
would ‘rather starve than be treated like this’.

TCAR asks the question: who are the real criminals? The British government and companies who force war and poverty onto millions of people around the world? Or the people who are forced to flee such situations?

Free Raul Ally! End the criminalisation of asylum seekers and migrants!

http://tcarblog.blogspot.co.uk/

Justice for Immigrants! Freedom for Refugees!
Together we are Stronger!
TYNESIDE COMMUNITY ACTION AGAINST RACISM (TCAR)

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UPCOMING EVENT: Fighting Racism in Britain -13 April @ 2pm LONDON

PUBLIC EVENT- DISCUSSION AND ORGANISING

WHEN: Saturday April 13 2013 @ 2pm

WHERE: Horn Of Africa Community Centre, Shepherds Bush, Lime Grove, W12 8EE

[Facebook event: www.facebook.com/events/506934212698740/]

HOS 13 April event

Britain’s brutal imperialist oppression around the world finds its mirror in a vicious racism at home. Black and Muslim people in particular bear the brunt of police racism and state repression.

Hands of Somalia works with the Somali community and others in Britain to fight racism. We have been involved in anti-deportation campaigns (Free Said) and other work to expose the role of British security services (MI5) attempting to recruit Somalis to spy on their own communities on behalf of the British state.

Come to our meeting and find out about Mahdi Hashi, a Somali youth worker from Kentish Town in London who was tortured, stripped of his British citizenship and secretly sent to trial in the US because he refused to work for M15 as an informer.

Speakers include:

#Hands off Somalia

#Revolutionary Communist Group

#Somali immigration lawyer

#And more…

<< PLUS >>

Plenty of time for open discussion and debate

Organising and planning for 7 May protest in London

** ALL WELCOME | FREE ENTRY | DONATIONS WELCOME **

Get angry – get organised – get involved in the fight against racism and imperialism.

Join Hands off Somalia!

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Mahdi Hashi and Britain’s intervention in Somalia

Written by Amina Cali for Hands off Somalia

As a Somali, I believe we have the freedom to chose, the freedom to elect our leaders and proudly watch our country prosper. We want to eliminate the root of corruption and the spread of hatred between clans. We want a united people and a united country. For too long, we have witnessed the bloodshed of our mothers and fathers; the list is endless.

Now it’s our time to manifest a government that will rule justly. Our history is deep, broad; we have the natural resources to rebuild our war-torn country. However, we can not be fooled by those who extend out one hand to ‘help’, whilst plotting to rob us of our resources with the other.

I was raised to believe that knowledge is the key to set your mind free. Indeed it is the next generation that can uphold the future. It is our duty to learn from the past so we can build a firm pillar for the present and invest in ourselves in order to excel. Anything is possible when we come under one banner. We should not forget it is for our own benefit when we compete with others.

Why Somalia?

Due to recent oil discoveries around the region of the east coast of Africa, western countries have had an immense urge to become involved with Somalia. China and Turkey have taken the initiative to help the war torn regent by supplying human aid, clean water etc, in order to build a relationship with its host for future businesses. “Why now?” is the question that keeps coming back to me, when the country was in turmoil for twenty-one years.

There were previous attempts on locating oil wells, without much prevail. It is now a stated fact that the information used previously was incorrect, hence the reason as to why the oil and other natural resources were never found.

Since the new discovery, countries involved have been all of a sudden eager to lend a helping hand, to supply Somalia with the means of constructing and extracting this black gold.

Many countries that have had oil for many years are now running low with supply. So the buyers plot to extend a business plan that is very much tempting on the outside, but in reality will benefit very few people in the country itself.

The leader of our country should by now be thinking purely of the well-being of our citizens to safeguard Somalia’s interests. A new light has been ignited for the Somali people and it shines brightly, so now is the time for our leaders to either lead or be led.

Mahdi Hashi

After many years of imperialism, Britain has the nerve to still dominate over the people they have long oppressed both abroad and at home. Mahdi Hashi is an example of this. He is a young Somali man, born in Somalia but raised in Britain, being treated unjustly. A promising student and youth worker, Mahdi has an exceptional reputation.

Whilst visiting Somalia and nearby Djibouti, Mahdi was detained on phoney ‘terrorism’ charges with the help of the British government who then revoked his British citizenship and helped render him to the US.

Camp Lemmonnier

Hashi was believed to be held for a time at America’s military base in Djibouti, Camp Lemonnier

The British government say Mahdi lost his rights to live in the UK because of the ‘public good’ with very little proof of what ‘bad’ Mahdi has ever committed.

In Britain the law of stripping someone’s citizenship is hardly even known about by the citizens themselves. Furthermore due to the recent discoveries in Somalia, foremost of which is oil, laws like this have intensified in order to criminalise the exact people (Somalis) that the British government has plans to further exploit and impoverish back home.

Mahdi has never been affiliated with any terrorist groups. That aside, the more likely explanation for Mahdi’s abduction is something more sinister.

We should ask how is it possible for these authorities to imprison a young man, in order to force him to ‘give’ information on certain organisations? It is a well known tactic to abduct a person, so they become scared into admitting something which they don’t know, by means of mental and physical torture. We know the British and US governments routinely use these tactics.

Intimidation and harassment

Since 2006 the British secret services and police, including MI5, had been intimidating and harassing Mahdi. In 2009 they attempted to obtain his services as a ‘snitch’ (informer) on his own community back in Britain. This was a plan that was never to be a success but ultimately mean Mahdi would pay the price for resisting this campaign of terror.

Mahdi and his father

Mahdi and his father

Then in 2012, the 23 year-old was abducted and tortured in a prison in Djibouti subsequently being handed over to US agents. In a recent interview with his lawyer, Mahdi Hashi explained his painful experience in the hands of the secret police in Djibouti where he was threatened with physical and sexual abuse.

Whilst in prison, Mahdi witnessed other detainees being tortured and explained that they were stripped and hung upside down. The following day Mahdi was cautioned to work with authorities or else he would be beaten and sexually abused like the other prisoners. This is how the US and Britain obtain so- called ‘information’ for their so-called ‘war on terror’.

Mahdi’s parents, who became worried sick after months of being unable to contact him, found out about his ordeal and are now having to deal with the thought of knowing that their son was tortured yet still unjustly detained by the US government where is now resides. Mahdi’s mother said “We will never give up our rights and our faith. If we die for life, we do not care”. Her will to fight is inspiring us all.

A more recent photograph of former Haverstock School pupil Mahdi Hashi

A more recent photograph of former Haverstock School pupil Mahdi Hashi

If it is now revealed that Mahdi is being held as a prisoner in the United States, why haven’t the British government gone to his aid? We know it’s because they are involved in his torture and unlawful detention. They speak of equality and freedom but so far Mahdi’s equality and freedom have been torn away quickly and easily because he would not join the British government to further criminalise his own community.

Mahdi should not be held in prison and his torture was unlawful. The fight for justice for Mahdi Hashi continues, as does the fight for justice for all Somalis demonised by imperialism.

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Said Kasim in CRITICAL condition due to hunger strike – please help him!!

this post is updated regularly with new telephone numbers etc.

thanks for everyone who has called UKBA and Colnbrook – KEEP IT UP! FREE SAID!

Dear Everyone,

Said Kasim seriously needs some help – just 5 minutes of your time – anything you can do to raise alarm will be appreciated by Said.

Said has been on hunger strike 22 days but ignored by SERCO and UKBA. He had not been seen by a doctor until last night when he was moved to the healthcare unit. Said now has signs of kidney and liver failure, SERCO are refusing responsibility. Said is still refusing to go to a hospital until UKBA release him or make an intervention to such effect.

Text message received just now from Said:

“Doctor came im room with UKBA doctor told me found out my one kidney it doesin’t working and liver problem, so told me to take me to hospital i refuse to go i told them i need a letter release then i’ll go, then doctor asked me some quetion about treatment from them, drid tablets and some food but i refuse all then doctor give to me a form to sign then doctor said from now finished dealing with me but now anything wrong happen to ukba only but not healthcare department because they are already give to ukba my result. Anthony i am in very hard situation even my urine blood inside”

Said Kasim Mohamed

Said Kasim Mohamed

Said was not taken off his cocktail of medicines for hypertension and depression by SERCO staff despite eating no food for 22 days. Likely this is the cause of his now severe condition.

As you can see SERCO are now backing down and blaming UKBA – now is the time to strike Colnbrook IRC – UKBA – the lot of them.

Said is demanding to be released out of the detention centre which is killing him. Bail, UKBA release, whatever – just out of the prison (i.e. Said told us he doesn’t want to go to the hospital then back to the prison again – we know UKBA do that).

Said has not committed any crimes and never absconded or broken terms laid down by UKBA.

We know 2 Algerian men just got out of Colnbrook IRC after 15 days of hunger strike and have not come back to Colnbrook.

We recommend you ring Colnbrook healthcare now and we have provided some questions you can ask below

Name: Said Kasim Mohamed (referred to as ‘Eddy Issa’ by UKBA, incase they ask or deny knowing who Said is)
HO Ref: M1382343
CID: 7236534

CALL COLNBROOK NOW:

  1. Ring 0208 607 5200
  2. then press OPTION 1
  3. THEN PRESS 310 (Healthcare)

Or instead, try:

  1. Ring 0208 607 5200
  2. press OPTION 1
  3. THEN PRESS 354 (UKBA staff in Colnbrook)

or Fax Colnbrook 0208 759 7996 (attn: UKBA centre manager and SERCO healthcare unit)

and/or Fax UKBA in Colnbrook 0208 990 1092 (Attn: UKBA contract manager, deputy manager)

Demand Said’s immediate release and ask the following questions:

  • Ask why SERCO staff only put Said in the healthcare unit last night after literally ignoring him for 20 days and not letting him be seen by a doctor once. They are responsible for his health

  • Ask why Said is on hunger strike – why would someone have to take this measure?

  • Ask why UKBA refuse to give Said a proper interview with the Tanzanian embassy to ‘prove’ he has a connection with that country?

  • Ask why UKBA were still feeding Said a cocktail of medicines for hypertension and depression despite the fact that he has not had food in 20 days?

  • Ask why SERCO nurses kept hiding Said’s blood sugar level readings from him

  • Ask why UKBA are holding Said in detention prison when they are not deporting him

  • Ask why Said’s judicial review was thrown out in 10 minutes despite him not having access to a proper translator (they got a Swahili one when he speaks Kibajuni – a Somali dialect).

  • WHERE IS THE JUSTICE in this?

Other things you can do:

Call UKBA switchboard (9am-445pm)

Telephone: 0870 606 7766

Call the Ministry of Justice (in charge of prisons etc)

Telephone: 020 3334 3555 (open 9am-430pm)

Ring the Home Office (immigration) to report a hunger strike protest and ask the above questions

Telephone: 020 7035 4848
Fax: 020 7035 4745
Email: public.enquiries@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk

Contact local MP John Mcdonnell to inform him about Said’s hunger strike and critical condition (he has intervened before)

Email: mcdonnellj@parliament.uk

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/johnmcdonnellMP

Alert journalists

Zoe Williams, Twitter – @zoesqwilliams. She is a journalist for the Guardian who has written recently about asylum seekers on section 4.

The Independent
Phone: 020 7005 2000
Email: c.hamilton@independent.co.uk, newseditor@independent.co.uk, foreigneditor@independent.co.uk, letters@independent.co.uk

The Guardian
Phone: 020 3353 2000
Email: owen.bowcott@guardian.co.uk, sam.jones@guardian.co.uk, national@guardian.co.uk, news@observer.co.uk

The Telegraph
Phone: 020 7931 2000
Email: rosa.silverman@telegraph.co.uk, dtnews@telegraph.co.uk, stnews@telegraph.co.uk

Metro
Phone: 020 3615 0600
Email: joel.taylor@ukmetro.co.uk, news.london@ukmetro.co.uk

In Said’s own words:

“I better off die than to be locked inside like this… I am not a terrorist and I’m not a danger to the public. In short, I’m not going to stop my hunger strike until I die”

UKBA wrongly accuse Said of being from Tanzania, a country he has no connection with and they have not proven his identity other than a flawed SPRAKAB test – a corrupt testing system UKBA dropped because it was not reliable enough. Said is from the persecuted Bajuni ethnic minority, from the island of Koyama (Bajuni Islands) in Somalia.

Said was beaten up by UKBA contracted Reliance security staff during his removal in September 2012 and despite recently applying for judicial review against the government (representing himself in court due to no legal aid available) has not had any luck getting justice.

JUSTICE FOR SAID!

FREE HIM NOW!

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Said Kasim begins a hunger strike in Colnbrook IRC

Said Kasim has informed supporters of Hands off Somalia that he has begun a hunger strike inside Colnbrook immigration prison, in protest to his extensive unlawful detention – which is now over one year – and increasingly oppressive treatment inside the prison.

Said went for a further Judicial Review last Friday, only to find that the courts and contracted translation services CAPTIA had once again failed to provide Said with a Kibajuni translator. The judge adjourned his case but with no set date and ruled that Said’s removal can still take place.

British courts are scrambling after paying translation service CAPITA millions, only to find out CAPTIA can not provide a proper service and constantly don’t turn up to court. MPs have even described the deal as ‘nothing short of shambolic’.

Said forwarded HOS the fax below which emotionally explains his reasoning behind the protest and that he is prepared to risk his health and  life in order to get his freedom. Said also sent this fax to SERCO and the medical unit in Colnbrook IRC to inform them of his protest.

Said sent this fax to UKBA, SERCO and the medical unit in Colnbrook IRC to inform them of his protest

Said sent this fax to UKBA, SERCO and the medical unit in Colnbrook IRC to inform them of his protest

Doctors at Colnbrook IRC have rushed to advise Said to postpone his action as he currently takes a cocktail of medicines to help with his heart condition and depression, which were only caused by his detention. Doctors told Said that a hunger strike could prove seriously detrimental to his health as consuming the drugs he normally takes without food could damage his liver and kidneys.

Said told Hands off Somalia that he is determined to continue to fight for his freedom despite the serious risks involved.

He told UKBA’s doctors “I’m not scared about my problems for a long time, you are a doctor and this is part of your job so ask UKBA questions and tell them I want to be free. I am not a terrorist and I’m not a danger to the public. In short, I’m not going to stop my hunger strike until I die”

Hands off Somalia support Said in this protest and plan solidarity actions to support him

You can support Said:

  • Call Colnbrook IRC to complain. Tel: 020 8607 5200 PRESS OPTION 1 THEN PRESS 303
  • Ring the Home Office to report his protest and demand his freedom. Telephone:  020 7035 4848 or Fax: 020 7035 4745 or Email: public.enquiries@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk
  • Contact local MP John Mcdonnell to inform him about Said’s hunger strike and ask why someone like Said would have to take to such measures to get justice. Email: mcdonnellj@parliament.uk or Twitter https://twitter.com/johnmcdonnellMP
  • Send us a message on Facebook of any action you want to take
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Said Kasim – fighting onwards for justice

Supporters from Hands off Somalia and Fight Racism Fight Imperialism (Revolutionary Communist Group) went to support Said Kasim on Friday for his Judicial Review (JR) application at the Royal Courts of Justice in London (The Strand).

The day was punishing for Said – surrounded by 3 Reliance (Tascor) security guards the entire time despite having a broken leg in a cast. However Said will be back in court this week on Friday to try again. His case was held until last on the day because the court failed to provide him with a translator, despite Said requesting one four days prior.

Although speaking some basic English, Said speaks Kibajuni, a southern Somali language. Said requested a translator to help understand everything correctly and to ensure he could represent himself in a fair and true way. He has previously always had a translator in court.

Supporters outside the court on 8th February 2013

Supporters outside the court on 8th February 2013

The judge – Timothy Brennan QC – wanted to interrogate Said, refusing to believe he ‘needed’ a translator. The judge asked (shouted at) Said various useless questions such as:

‘why are you in England?’
‘how can you live in this country if you don’t speak English?’
‘who wrote your application if you don’t speak English?’
‘where did you work before being in detention?’
‘how did you eat if you cant speak English?’
‘how did you survive if you cant speak English?’

Despite understanding that judges must test the sincerity of an individual – this was aggravating and came across as discriminating.

If you look at the QCs website you will see he does not specify in immigration law (mostly commercial law)
http://www.devereuxchambers.co.uk/barrister/6/timothy_brennan_qc

This attack was an attempt to unnerve Said and rock his boat. Said replied he doesnt speak English well but it was a tough moment. It was an outright and unnecessary attack towards him.

Said presented a document showing he had asked for a translator and previously submitted this to the court.

When the Judge asked the Home Office solicitor ‘how do we deal with this’ (?!), they replied that previously Said has had a translator in court so therefor seems to deserve one going forward.

The case has been adjourned until Friday 15 February – where we wil once again show up to support Said

Said Kasim told Hands off Somalia he was very happy to see his supporters in court and it made him stronger. Said explained that if supporters had not come to show their solidarity, he might have had his case thrown out all together.

Together we are stronger!
Fight racism!
Hands off Somalia!

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A victory for Said – deportation flight cancelled!

Yesterday evening Said Kasim Mohamed was finally informed that his flight for today with Qatar Airlines had been cancelled by UKBA.

Although still on stand-by for any future deportation, this is a clear victory for Said, the campaigns, supporters, and all immigrants fighting deportation and racism. Together we send a clear message to UKBA that we oppose their racist treatment of immigrants in this country and we will fight deportations.

Since last week Said had been personally told by SERCO and UKBA inside Colnbrook IRC that his flight was cancelled and that he ‘shouldn’t worry’. However Said rightly demanded written proof of the cancellation as often immigrants are tricked and lied too by UKBA and SERCO guards. Such written proof never materialised.

After breaking his leg in an accident last Tuesday, and only getting it x-rayed on Friday night, Said was worried and stressed at the thought he could be deported to Tanzania, the east African country he has no connection with, considering he needs to visit the hospital next week for medical attention and has a heart condition.

In a last minute intervention, campaigners from Hands off Somalia (HOS) got in touch with John McDonnell MP for Hayes and Harlington. His office managed to get through to the Home Office who confirmed Said’s flight was cancelled. Mark Harper MP (Minister of State for Immigration) and his office were also informed of Said’s foul treatment at the hands of SERCO and UKBA.

An email sent to HOS yesterday from the office of John McDonnell MP informing that Said's ticket had been cancelled.

An email sent to HOS yesterday from the office of John McDonnell MP informing that Said’s ticket had been cancelled.

 

We believe the flight was cancelled due to pressure from campaigners and supporters on UKBA and Qatar Airlines to cancel the flight, as well as the upcoming Judicial Review held by Said (with the help from other prisoners) against UKBA and the Home Office.

Although happy to finally get hold of this important information, Said was still concerned that UKBA continue to play games with his life. Yesterday SERCO staff  held Said in ‘short time’ (small cells used before deporting an immigrant) for some hours, even though he was not to be deported.

Said also had his cell stripped of his possessions, clothing, and even cutlery and is still fighting to get them returned.

This morning Said informed Hands off Somalia that he spoke to Qatar Airlines where he was told his ticket had been cancelled although UKBA have already made enquires into booking a new ticket for Said. We must be vigilant and ready to act at any moment.

Its not clear how this is lawful since Said has a pending Judicial Review case and an active complaint with UKBA’s Professional Standards Unit (complaints department) which he could not pursue outside of Britain.

Said sends a message of thanks to all those who have stood in solidarity with him during these times when racist UKBA have really pushed him to the limit, both violating his human rights and attempting to emotionally manipulate him. Said told HOS he feels stronger and more energised to fight for his rights, knowing that people are fighting with him on the outside.

A victory for one is a victory for all!

Hands off immigrants! Hands off Somalia!

FREE SAID!

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