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Hamedullah Hassani Must Stay

John O | 15.11.2007 13:17 | Migration | Social Struggles | Workers' Movements

Hamedullah, is currently in Oakington Immigration Removal Centre and is to be removed from the UK on Tuesday 20th November, by 'Charter flight Ravel'. 'Ravel' is the operational name for the Home Office regular deportation flights to Afghanistan.

Hamedullah came to the UK in 2004 aged 15. His father had been working for RAWA (Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan) until his disappearance and presumed death in 2001. Hamedullah's mother was also a member of RAWA as was Hamedullah who helped distribute posters and leaflets. Whist leafleting for RAWA he was warned that the authorities had surrounded the family home and were in danger. That's the last time he saw his family. He went into hiding and was helped to flee. Hamedullah does not know the whereabouts of his mother or siblings.

Hamedullah came to the UK as an unaccompanied minor. His Asylum claim made in December 2004 was refused but he was granted Temporary admission until his 18th birthday. He was 18 in April 2007. He made a fresh asylum claim in May 2007 ; it was refused and an appeal dismissed in July.

Canterbury has become his home and he has been an excellent student at Canterbury College. Having successfully completed an ESOL course he went on to study IT and gained a 'Pass with Credit'. He was offered a place on a higher-level course, BTEC First Diploma for IT Practitioners, which he was hoping to take up this year. His tutors have described him as ' hard working, mature, studious, and considerate.' He was looked up to by other students and 'would often help the less able' in class. Hamedullah also attended the Red Cross social evenings where young people cook or play sports together.

He has been refused asylum by the Home Office which states, firstly - that he would not be facing any threat from the authorities because of his connection to RAWA and secondly - that he could relocate to Kabul where he could find a means of supporting himself.

His supporters disagree:

It would be unsafe for Hamedullah to return to Afghanistan for the following reasons:

1. RAWA is the most radical of the women's organizations in Afghanistan where almost no progress has been made in relation to women's rights. RAWA would therefore present a challenge to those in power who would have an interest in targeting anyone associated with RAWA. Hamedullah would therefore be at risk.

2. In relocating to another area, Hamedullah would be offered no protection from the authorities or police and, as a young man returning, he would be regarded with suspicion. He would therefore be in a threatening and highly frightening environment.

3. The economy is in a very fragile state, housing costs are high and he would need to rely heavily on family links in order to survive. Hamedullah has no contact with his family and does not know their whereabouts. He would therefore be extremely vulnerable and homeless. 

4. U.S.A. Country Reports on Human Rights Practices - Afghanistan 2006: "There continued to be instances in which security and factional forces committed extrajudicial killings and torture. Human rights problems included: extrajudicial killings; torture; poor prison conditions; official impunity; prolonged pretrial detention; abuse of authority by regional commanders; restrictions on freedoms of press, religion, movement, and association; violence and societal discrimination against women, religious converts, and minorities; trafficking in persons; abuse of worker rights; and child labor."

What you can do to help!

1.) Please send urgent faxes immediately to Rt. Hon. Jacqui Smith, Secretary of State for the Home Office asking that Hamedullah Hassani be granted protection in the UK. Please use the attached "model letter" (HamedullahJS.doc) you can copy/amend/write your own version (if you do so, please remember to include the HO ref: H1138373).

2) Print of the attached petition, HamedullahPT.doc, get as many signatures as you can, and fax completed petitions to: 01227 811101.

Contact for the campaign:
'Hamedullah Belongs to Canterbury'
Angela Bertaille
C/o Canterbury College
New Dover Rd
Kent CT1 3AJ
Tel: 01227 811111 ext 1364

End of Bulletin:

Source for this Message:
Hamedullah Belongs to Canterbury

John O
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