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Home | Friday 30th October 2009 | Issue 697

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It took the murder of 147 people earlier this week to remind the British media that just because our troops have slunk out of Iraq with their tail between their legs, it doesn’t mean they left behind a shining beacon of democracy, or even a safe place to live. That Iraq is still a warzone is something the British immigration authorities refuse to recognise and Iraqi refugees continue to be deported.

On October 15th around 40 Iraqis were deported on a specially chartered flight to Baghdad. When they arrived, the Iraqi authorities only accepted eight of the deportees, putting the rest straight back on a plane to Blighty. A rather embarrassed Home Office said they will “iron out” the difficulties and “expect to carry out another flight.”

Many of the deportees reported being violently assaulted by security guards on the flight, one told the Coalition to Stop Deportation, “they got my head in a headlock, beat it, put a blanket over it, pushed me down to the floor then dragged me around”. He added, “They were worse than Saddam Hussein’s men.”

On their return the double deportees were banged up at Brook House detention centre at Gatwick airport. Since then a number of them, along with refugees from Afghanistan, Algeria, Nigeria and Jamaica, have gone on hunger strike in protest at their treatment at the hands of the immigration authorities.

A statement released by the hunger strikers said, “Most of us are being removed to countries like Afghanistan and Iraq, which are clearly war zones. Most of us have families in the UK. What are we supposed to do? Leave them behind or take them with us right into the middle of a war zone to be killed?

In Iraq meanwhile, the run up to January’s elections is seeing an escalating campaign of violence, with thousands killed and maimed in the last few months alone. Iraq eh? Hell of a war, glad that one’s over.

* On Monday (26th) around 50 demonstrated at the Home Office in London demanding the release of the Iraqis who are back in detention in Britain.

* See


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