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Petition Tag - asylum seeker
Ibrahim from Algeria has been seeking asylum in Britain since 2005. He was educated to university level in Algeria without a leader, when both the Algerian National Army and armed Islamic militias began to take part in violence and human rights abuses directed at the Algerian civilian population, Ibrahim fled the army in protest and went into hiding in the mountains.
When a new president came into power in 1999, he felt safe enough to return to Algiers where he dedicated himself to writing a book entitled ‘Democracy in the Arab and Islamic World’. This book eloquently expresses his opinions on the ‘fierce conflict’ between democracy and Islam and shows a strongly held intellectual skepticism over the contemporary application of Islamic ‘Sharia’ law in Algeria. It was published in Paris in 2009.
The writing and publishing of his work caught the eye of hard-line Islamic militants. They accused him of being anti-Islamic, and started a hate campaign against him – they preached against him in the mosques, he received death threats and people beat and insulted him in the streets. They broke into his house, smashing down the door and tore up the manuscript oh his book and his other writings. At this point Ibrahim realized he had to flee the country or he could very soon lose his life.
He escaped to England by sea and land and not long after applied for asylum. At this point the troubles began that have lasted until now. His claim for asylum suffered set back after set back due to unsuitable interpreters and a shocking lack of legal advice and support throughout his case. He has been forced to spend long months and years waiting for repeated negative decision from the authorities.
He has been forced to move from house to house, surviving on next to nothing: not being legally allowed to work, and denied access to benefits and education. Finally he decided to apply to voluntarily return to Algeria, despite the obvious danger, but this also was refused on the grounds that they could not obtain a travel document for him. So, here he is – in an endless limbo; a horrific and dehumanizing no man’s land with no options left.
Ibrahim has finally and bravely decided to sleep out on College Green, in front of Bristol City Council, he has been sleeping there every single night since the 1st of July, for 19 days now, to tell his story openly, without fear or shame, to put it into the hands of the authorities and the British Public, hoping through this peaceful and poignant protest that the long years of waiting and suffering may finally be resolved.
By signing this petition you are showing your support for Ibrahim and for the many other destitute asylum seekers living in limbo, who experience absolute and severe poverty, who have no money and accommodation or the right to work and support themselves. In supporting the motion, we believe that the Council can send a strong message to the UK Government that its inhumane and ineffective policy of forcing people who have been refused asylum into abject poverty onto the streets of our city is unacceptable to the people of Bristol.
We, the undersigned, ask Tony McNulty the Immigration Minister to show compassion to Nyalikonga Babinyanga (HO Ref: B1093711) and allow him to remain in safety in the UK.
Nyalikonga Babinyanga is a 33yr old Law Student from Kinshasa University. He was a member of the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS) and in July 2001 when making a speech to Students, UDPS members and the general public in a church in Kinshasa about the need for a Free Democratic DRC, he was arrested and taken to prison where he was tortured by cigarette burns on his body and beaten about the head with the butt of a gun. After two and a half months his parents found a policeman willing to help him escape. He left the Congo and came to Britain in Oct 2001.
When he entered the UK he immediately applied for Asylum this application was rejected on the grounds of credibility. His medical assessment describes his condition as Severe Post Traumatic Stress including inability to sleep, eat, concentrate or remember properly as well as a severe depression. These are all symptoms of the punishment he received at the hands of Congolese Government officials. The small cell he was in had hour other prisoners and there was no food and no sanitation. Unfortunately the failure of his asylum claim has compounded the condition causing further stress and anxiety.
In spite of all this he is volunteering with the Red Cross to serve lunches to the Elderly and is also speaking at meetings and entering into Committee work again, with the 'Sante Refugee Project' in Camden, as part of his rehabilitation.
Nyalikonga has integrated well into the Camden Community and for Camden to lose him would be a disservice to the community. We would ask you to use your powers of compassion and allow Nyalikonga to remain in the UK.
ALI MANSOURI is an Iranian asylumseeker in Sweden .
For the second time a pilot refused to take him to a violent death sentenced ! This time he was chained hands and legs and mishandled by the Swedish police.
He was taken chained to a chair on board a little, private plain and then to Amsterdam, where he was then in chains moved to a passenger plane en route to Tehran. He asks for help and he receives a well deserved help from the Honorable people on board who demand the plane taxi back and stopped the deportation.
Mohammad-Amin Noorbehesht, a known Iranian political activist, has now arrived to the UK and submitted his claim for asylum under 1951 Geneva Refugee Convention.
Whilst in Iran, Amin had been subject to imprisonment, torture and other ill-treatments of such nature and after he left the country, the authorities captured and imprisoned his brother, too. He has spent a significant amount of time in hospitals in order to improve his physical condition. There are various medical reports available to support this claim. Amin is still suffering from miscellaneous and complex physical difficulties as well as post traumatic stress disorder as a result of those imprisonments and tortures. Amin is in urgent need of assistance and hospital treatment.
Whilst his previous asylum claim in the UK was under consideration, Amin left the country in order to assist his brother to come to the UK. Despite the fact that this was in breach of the UKBA asylum conditions, he saw no other possibilities to save another human being’s life, an attempt which did not eventually yield a successful result. On his way back, he was captured and imprisoned in several countries, including Switzerland and the Netherlands. Within both of which he submitted a fresh claim of asylum, however, under Dublin Regulation Act 2003, Amin was deported to his first point of entry to the European Union, that is, the United Kingdom.
Dear David Cameron,
Further to your election as our Prime Minister and your invitation to the British public to offer our energy, ideas and passion, we have put our names down on this petition to show our support for the Human Rights Act. We sincerely hope you will take note of this petition and understand that we have considered the Conservatives' reasons for replacing the Act with a Bill of Rights and Responsibilities. In light of all the arguments and evidence, we strongly believe that the Human Rights Act is one of the most precious and important pieces of UK legislation and we feel passionate about protecting it. We would like to take this opportunity to remind you that it was instigated by the great Conservative Prime Minister, Winston Churchill.
This is not a political stance specific petition; we voted for a range of parties in the recent election, however we are appealing to you, as you negotiate our country's future, to assure us that you will not repeal this Act.
Our reasons for this are as follows:
1) Human rights are important words to us and human rights law is vital. It has evolved over many years to protect citizens from their state and to allow everybody to enjoy rights that they deserve, simply by their nature of being human. The Human Rights Act is simple and gives every person in the UK the following rights:
1) the right to life
2) freedom from torture and degrading treatment
3) freedom from slavery and forced labour
4) the right to liberty
5) the right to a fair trial
6) the right not to be punished for something that wasn't a crime when you did it
7) the right to respect for private and family life
8) freedom of thought, conscience and religion, and freedom to express your beliefs
9) freedom of expression
10) freedom of assembly and association
11) the right to marry and to start a family
12) the right not to be discriminated against in respect of these rights and freedoms
13) the right to peaceful enjoyment of your property
14) the right to an education
15) the right to participate in free elections
16) the right not to be subjected to the death penalty
There are absolutely no articles in the Act that we, as members of the public, would not want to be fully protected by. We can see no reason for taking any of these rights away.
2) The Human Rights Act has been hugely misunderstood and misinterpreted. Many of the more ‘ridiculous’ law suits brought under the name of the act have been dismissed. It does not allow criminals to get whatever they want, in fact it actually makes it a legal requirement that the public is protected from dangers to society. Just one example of the benefits of the act is its use in keeping an elderly married couple in long-term care together. Although in an ideal world this should have been avoided by common sense or compassion, the fact is that law is clearly needed to prevent unpleasant situation like this occurring. Secondly, the Act does not, as it sometimes suggested, mean that threats to our nation’s security cannot be dealt with. The Act requires courts to balance public safety against individual rights and, if necessary, a person at risk of harming our country can certainly have their liberty deprived.
3) Far from, as the Conservatives have suggested, the Human Rights Act devaluing the words ‘human rights’, the Act actually strengthens them. The Conservatives have shown a great deal of interest in foreign policy and human rights abroad, but if we do not respect human rights at home we do not set a good example. For example, Guantanamo Bay has severely damaged the reputation of the USA. The USA put a lot of pressure on in the international community to respect human rights, yet did not themselves. This has tainted the concept of human rights negatively and has given countries who abuse human rights leverage to argue against changing their abusive practice. The UK should be an excellent example to the international community of a country that has the utmost respect for human rights. Removing the words ‘human rights’ from our laws would be a terrible signal of our lack of promotion of the concept within our own borders.
4) We welcome the promotion of more responsibility within society and are happy to lend a great deal of support to making this ideal a reality. The Human Rights Act is not the place for this however. There are many pieces of law that outline out responsibilities towards each other; the Act is the place to outline the state’s responsibilities towards us. It is therefore illogical to replace the Human Rights Act with a Bill of Rights and Responsibilities.
5) The Conservatives are unhappy with judges having power to advise Parliament, as the Act has allowed. We contest the idea that judges should not have a say in politics. They are exceptionally bright, informed members of society who would have had to demonstrate nuanced understanding and careful, responsible judgement before gaining such a position of authority. They will have a niche understanding of human rights that politicians cannot have because of the breadth of their mandates, and it is not wrong that they should not be consulted for their opinions. We note that, contrary to popular understanding, the Act does not give judges power to decide laws; MPs always have the last say on the laws Parliament produces.
6) It concerns us that a piece of legislation should only be designed to protect the British. For example, the issues of migration and asylum seeking have become confused, and there is often a lack of understanding that asylum seekers, who have suffered unimaginably and may face torture or even murder if they return to the country of origin, are different to economic migrants. We do not want our country to remove the piece of law that guarantees minorities such as asylum seekers the dignity they desperately deserve.
7) The Human Rights Act has not been imposed by Europe. The European Convention of Human Rights (upon which the Human Rights Act is based) was designed by European countries after World War II and has nothing to do with the EU. The Human Rights Act therefore actually allows human rights issues to be dealt with domestically rather than going all the way to courts in Strasbourg.