Monday, 9 December 2013

Today's Immigration News

LGBTQ activist Irina Putilova is in fast-track detention at Yarl's Wood, facing imminent removal to Russia where she will almost definitely be sent to prison. In Russia, Irina was harassed, followed, and attacked by state officials, the police and far right groups because of her political activism and identity.

Yarl's Wood Immigration Removal Centre has been the subject of several allegations of sexual assault by Serco staff. Sirah Jeng, an eyewitness, was almost deported last moth before she could give a statement to police. Three staff members have already been sacked - two for engaging in sexual activity with a detainee and one for failing to take action when the woman in question reported it. Another female detainee in a women-only wing has been admitted to hospital twice for complications related to pregnancy

In other news, Isa Muazu is still in the medical wing at Harmondsworth immigration detention centre in west London, where he is on hunger strike and has been since September. He is unable to stand up or see. He has been quoted as saying he would rather die than return to Nigeria, where he faces torture and death at the hands of the militant Islamic group Boko Haram. Last month Theresa May chartered a jet to send Muazu back to Nigeria, despite the fact he was declared unfit to fly by UK doctors. The mission was halted only when Nigerian authorities refused to allow the plane to land.

But on a more cheerful note, Trenton Oldfield, the London School of Economics graduate who interrupted the Oxford-Cambridge boat race will not be sent back to Australia. In court he explained that he was "vulnerable" and "emotional" after caring for his father in law who was dying of cancer, and this is what inspired him to disrupt the boat race, which he saw as symbolic of "elitism".

He went on to point out that "70% of the cabinet are Oxbridge graduates" and compared his attention-seeking stunt to the sports boycotts of South Africa in the 1980s.

God save the Queen.

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