Screening of Hamedullah tonight at London International Documentary Festival as UKBA resumes secret removal flights to Kabul
Hamedullah: The Road Home (Sue Clayton, UK, 23 min) and panel discussion on the policy of returning young people to Afghanistan
Part of the London International Documentary Festival at The Roundhouse Studio Theatre, Monday 28 May 2012 7.00-8.30pm.
Hamedullah: The Road Home is the film story of a young teen who came to the UK alone seeking asylum, and was then deported back to Afghanistan with no means of support. This event will feature the film, and a panel discussion with Sue Clayton the director, Lisa Matthews, co-ordinator of NCADC South; and a spokesperson from the Refugee Council, whose bombshell report this week on how the UKBA detains and imprisons children in the UK, made headline news when released on 20 May 2012.
All welcome. Tickets available on the door or online.
NCADC calls for immediate end to deportations to Afghanistan
NCADC has learned that yet another mass deportation flight to Kabul is scheduled for Tuesday 29 May, just minutes after midnight. Kabul, and the rest of Afghanistan, is simply not safe. As a recent Reuters report highlights, the situation in Afghanistan is deteriorating and will continue to do when foreign troops leave. As a woman who had been internally displaced with her family said, “Security in the country is terrible. Day by day there are more [refugees]”.
The report tells of “intensifying violence as NATO combat troops prepare to leave by end-2014 and a poor economic outlook in the face of shrinking aid could spell a humanitarian disaster for Afghanistan, where a third already live beneath the poverty line”. Amnesty International’s report, Fleeing War, Finding Misery: the plight of the internally displaced in Afghanistan, highlights how an escalation in fighting has left half a million Afghans internally displaced with around 400 more joining their ranks every single day. The internally displaced are increasingly being forced to live in terrible conditions in slums, struggling to survive without food and without government assistance.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s 2011 Human Rights and Democracy report attests to the upsurge in violence. The FCO is very clear about whether Afghanistan is safe … for British citizens:
The FCO’s travel advice states that:
“Afghanistan has a high threat of terrorism and specific methods of attack are evolving and increasing in sophistication. No part of Afghanistan should be considered immune from violence and the potential exists throughout the country for hostile acts … You should be aware of the continuing high threat from terrorism within Afghanistan. Threats, specific or otherwise, are reported on an almost daily basis. Terrorists and insurgents conduct frequent and widespread lethal attacks against British and Coalition armed forces, political and civilian targets.”
The worsening security situation in Afghanistan, which recently resulted in Kabul airport being closed for several week, undoubtedly demonstrates that Article 15c protection is needed. This is when there is a “serious and individual threat to a civilian’s life or person by reason of indiscriminate violence in situations of international or internal armed conflict.” Article 15c refers to the Qualification Directive – the implementation of the Refugee Convention into European (and thus British domestic asylum) law, and allows for protection outside of the narrow definitions of the Refugee Convention.
While the UK government is categorical in its view of Afghanistan as unsafe for British tourists, it has no qualms about forcibly removing dozens of young men to a war-zone on mass deportation flights that depart in the early hours of the morning from unknown airports, operated by undisclosed companies. We call on the British government to cease this shameful hypocrisy immediately, and halt all forced removals to Afghanistan.