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Dawn Raids Back in Glasgow: Protest Saturday

Tim Waterstone | 10.02.2006 14:02 | Anti-racism | Migration | Repression

This week, the first "dawn raid" of 2006 against Glasgow's asylum-seeking population was launched. The victims were the Akyol family, of Kurdish origin, who have lived in Glasgow for five years. Following a pledge to picket after each raid launched from Brand St, Glasgow No Borders is calling for a demo there from 7am on Saturday

A message from No Borders Glasgow read:
"Glasgow: Protest the first dawn raid of 2006.

Join the picket at Brand Street Immigration Enforcement Unit tomorrow Saturday 11th February, from 7am onwards.

At the end of 2005, it appeared that the government's brutal programme of dawn raids had been halted in Glasgow. When the abductions became widely known there was public outrage. A campaign of demonstrations, lobbying of the parliament in Edinburgh, vigils at Brand Street Immigration Enforcement Unit and direct action against the snatch squads seemed to have put a stop to the dawn raids. Less that two weeks ago Jack McConnell claimed in the Sunday Observer to have secured changes to the way in which the Home Office would carry out 'dawn raids' in Scotland but without giving any details.

This week, another family was woken before dawn, dragged from their home and taken to imprisonment at Dungavel. See the press release from Glasgow Campaign to Welcome Refugees, below.

Last year, No Borders Glasgow pledged to picket Brand Street every time a dawn raid was launched from there.

Please come along tomorrow to show solidarity with every family living in fear of the dawn raids, and to send a message to the Home Office: refugees are welcome here - Immigration snatch squads are not.

Brand Street is close to Cessnock Underground. For a map click here:

If you can't make it at 7am, come later.
If you can only make it for a short time, still come. Spread the word. Please forward this appeal."

This Press Release from GCtWR gives details of the abduction:
"Press Release

Glasgow Campaign to Welcome Refugees

Despite the massive opposition across Scotland to Home Office policy, refugee families are still being dragged from their homes in the early hours of the morning, as a step in the process of deportation.

On Wednesday morning (8th Feb), Lutfu and Gultan Akyol and their two children, Erem, 10, and Eren, 6, were taken from their flat just after 6 a.m. when Home Office officials battered their door in. They are now in Dungavel Detention Centre awaiting deportation.

The family is Kurdish and both parents have already been imprisoned in Turkey for opposing the government's treatment of Kurds. The Turkish government has destroyed thousands of Kurdish villages over the past few years and imprisoned or killed many Kurds. The Kurdish language has often been totally banned and Kurds in Turkey have been very brutally treated for many years.

The family has been here for nearly five years. The children, Erem and Eren, have spent their whole school lives in Scottish schools. They both speak with a Scottish accent and consider themselves Scottish. They desperately miss their school and their friends.

Lutfu is a qualified car mechanic and had hoped to open his own business here in Glasgow. Now his health is broken and he is suicidal because of worry about his family's fate.

If they are forced to return to Turkey the parents expect that they will be gaoled immediately and probably tortured. The family has many friends in the Scottish community who are outraged at what has happened to them. Yet again, people in the city of Glasgow are faced with having their friends dragged off in the middle of the night for deportation to a brutal regime.

Jack McConnell, Charles Clarke and Tony Blair seem determined to ignore the wishes of the people in Scotland, who want to welcome refugees here to live and work and become part of our communities. The Akyol family should be allowed to remain in Scotland.

An attempt to remove the family to England this morning, caused the children so much distress it had to be abandoned.

We are calling on the Home Secretary to use his discretion and to grant the family leave to remain on humanitarian grounds."

Tim Waterstone
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Display the following 2 comments

  1. Blair's Brutality — twilight
  2. Terror of dawn raids — megan