Action please:

Grievous Angel

Beast of Burden
A campaign you can quickly and easily support - seems like a deserving cause to me.


Elizabeth* is a Ugandan lesbian who fled to the UK in 2004, having lived her life as a lesbian secretly for many years. One night after being out with friends at an underground gay club she was visited at her home by several men she now believes to have been associated with the Ugandan authorities. She was bundled into a car and taken to a so called 'Safe House' - unofficial Ugandan prisons where torture is regularly practised. Elizabeth was held for 5 months, during which time she was repeatedly raped, whipped and beaten. She eventually managed to escape, and fled to the UK where she claimed asylum.

Elizabeth's asylum claim, and her appeal, have both been rejected. Whilst the adjudicators recognise that homosexuals are persecuted in Uganda, they do not believe that the term 'homosexual', and therefore evidence relating to the treatment of homosexuals, applies to lesbians. They have also questioned her identity as a lesbian, because she had a child as a young woman. They show further misunderstandings about the nature of both underground gay communities, and of state sanctioned abduction, detention and torture.

Elizabeth has now been detained, and is being held at Manchester Airport's Holding Centre.

Elizabeth is in desperate and genuine fear of what awaits her if/when the Home Office forcibly deport her to Uganda. Not only has she been through the most terrible experiences, her long term partner, Patience, has not be heard from or of since 2004; Elizabeth fears that she too has been abducted and detained. Unsurprisingly the abuse Elizabeth suffered in Uganda, and her fear and sadness at the apparent loss of her partner, has left Elizabeth depressed and extremely worried for her future.

Friends who have spoken to Elizabeth since her detention today believe she is suicidal. She needs your help.


Forward this email to friends who may want to help too.

If we succeed in getting Elizabeth released, please help in the future by:

oVisit Elizabeth's website and sign her petition.

oEmail the campaign if you or anyone you know has evidence about the treatment of lesbians in Uganda, and the use of state sanctioned unofficial 'Safe Houses' for detention and torture.

oGet involved in the campaign. We are only just starting up, so we really do need your support. Either come along to the planning meeting or email us at Elizabeth Must Stay - 1st Planning Meeting
6pm, Thursday the 1st of June
Elizabeth Must Stay - Campaign Launch
6pm, Thursday 6th July
Both at the Lesbian and Gay Centre on Sidney Street
(Next the 8th Day Cafe, on Oxford Road)

(* Elizabeth's surname cannot be used for fear of more people in Ugandan hearing about her sexuality, and her family and daughter suffering as a result.)


Update from NCADC

NCADC News Service

Elizabeth Must Stay

"Once she was on the plane, Elizabeth was still cuffed with her hands behind her back, and her head forced forward in the seat" - a friend describes how Elizabeth claims she was treated during an attempt to remover her last week.

Stop British Airways Deporting Elizabeth!
Picket of British Airways Travel Shop
Saturday 10th June 2006 - 12,00 noon
British Airways Travel Shop
41/43 Deansgate
Manchester M3

Elizabeth is a Ugandan lesbian who has been living in Manchester. Elizabeth was detained for 5 months in Uganda, during which time she was repeatedly raped, whipped and beaten. She eventually managed to escape, and fled to the UK in 2004. No medical evidence was submitted by her previous solicitor in her asylum appeal, which was refused.

Elizabeth has been on 24-hour suicide watch at Yarl's Wood Removal Centre where she is being detained.

Last Friday 2nd June 2006, Elizabeth was taken by force to an aircraft to be deported to Uganda, despite the Immigration Service knowing that a psychiatrist is due to visit Elizabeth on the 8th June.

Elizabeth says she was assaulted by the immigration "escorts" on the plane.

She has now been served with new removal directions to Uganda with British Airways this Sunday 11th June 2006.

"He became very angry, grabbed her hands and put a second pair of handcuffs on her"
Beth Aze, co-ordinator of the Elizabeth Must Stay Campaign visited Elizabeth in Yarl's Wood on Sunday. Beth reports on how Elizabeth describes the attempted deportation on Friday :

"She was put on the plane, after a torrent of verbal threats on the way to the airport. Once she was on the plane, she was still cuffed with her hands behind her back, and her head forced forward in the seat. She complained but they refused to remove them, so she tried to wriggle into a more comfortable position. As she did this one of her hands came out of the cuffs. The male Officer became very angry and grabbed her hands to put a second pair of cuffs on her. Elizabeth was in two pairs of very tight hand cuffs and the airline stewards asked for her to be removed from the flight.

When I saw her in Yarl's Wood she showed me bruises and swelling on both arms, and a large swollen bruise on her right leg. She was also still experiencing limited movement in both her thumbs, one of which was causing her pain, the other of which had no sensation. When I hugged on first arriving she flinched and told me not to hold her so hard, which leads me to believe there are other bruises she couldn't easily show me on her back and/or shoulders."

"He told me next time it will be worse"
Elizabeth says she was also threatened on the way back from the airport. She says the immigration "escort" told her that it will be the same van next time, the same people, and it will be worse than what happened this time.

Elizabeth is reporting the assault to the police at Heathrow Airport.

"I cannot accept that it is appropriate to return my constituent to Uganda"
Elizabeth has the full support of Central Manchester MP Tony Lloyd and her local MP David Heyes who said in a letter to the Immigration Service ; "I cannot accept that it is appropriate to return my constituent to Uganda. I am especially concerned about the potential for further damage to her physical and mental health. I would urge you to release her immediately"

Elizabeth wants to thank everyone who sent faxes to the Home Office and to the airline last week. Speaking from inside Yarl's Woods she said "Thank you everyone - your support is the only thing that has kept me going"

What you can do to help:
1. Join the picket of the British Airways Travel Shop 41/43 Deansgate
Manchester M3 on Saturday
Map :

2. Fax British Airways
Elizabeth's campaign has put together a model fax that they are asking you to fax to British Airways. You can copy/amend/write your own version, asking them not to carry out the removal of Elizabeth from the UK

Fax : British Airways Chief Executive Officer on 0208 738 9801
Fax : British Airways Press Office on 0208 738 9838

3. Fax the Immigration Minister
Elizabeth's campaign has put together a model letter that they are asking you to fax to the Minister for Immigration Liam Byrne. You can copy/amend/write your own version, asking him not to remove Elizabeth from the UK and to release her now.

Fax: 020 7219 2417 from outside the UK + 44 20 7219 2417

Liam Byrne
Minister for Immigration
3rd Floor
Peel Building
2 Marsham Street

4. Join the Elizabeth Must Stay Campaign today!

5. Visit Elizabeth's website
Sign Elizabeth's on-line petition


End of Bulletin:


NCADC News Service

Joint statement issued by the Colnbrook IRC detainee's forum

We the detainees of Colnbrook Immigration Removal Centre have come to the conclusion that we are being held hostage by a monster that appears to be out of control of its creator. Like a Dr. Frankenstein, who lost control of his creature, the Home Office has now completely lost control of its three headed monster, the IND, the AIT and Detention Centres. These three organisations have turned into a coven of evil, promoting heart rendering injustice, bone crunching torture, psychologically destabilising malevolence, and spiritually crushing methods of handling immigrants.

We have run out of pleas and petitions, or reason to explain, or question, the ethics behind an organisation that dedicates itself to the dehumanization of already distressed, displaced, and disturbed people. Below, we pull three cases out of the hat, as examples of three categories of immigrants in detention here.

Group A: -Asylum seekers ; refugees who fled their native country, forced to abandon their wives, children and all they loved to save their life. All they want in life is to survive and live in safety. They have always complied with the conditions given them. They were detained when they went to report weekly to the immigration office, and since then they have been at Colnbrook IRC. They marked many months in detention during Refugee Week. What disturbs these people the most, apart from their indefinite imprisonment without a crime, is that they cannot be in contact with their family. They are haunted by what may happen to their families. They suffer psychologically, they are a chronic insomniacs, they can sometimes be seen talking to themselves, they have become forgetful, detached, absent minded, and can hardly concentrate when they are spoken to.

Some finished their studies in the UK, most were working and paying tax, had never committed any crimes, but are victims of this injustice all the same. Most are married to wives who have got status in the country.

Some are socio-economic migrants or so called refugees from poverty. Mostly from third world countries wanting only to work and earn an income to support families who are starving, sick, and poverty stricken.

Group B: is for the disabled who suffer a health or handicap problem and they have never been able to earn an income to take care of themselves in their poverty stricken country. They have been detained for countless months, without proper medical attention, in a condition where there are no disabled access facilities. In their time in detention, they have been verbally and racially abused by officers and detainees alike. They are discriminated against by the Home Office in getting special consideration given to people who are physically challenged in the "normal" society.

The third group C, which is a minority, are ex-convicts who although they have lived in England for a long time (some more than 20 years), have become political scapegoats, but there are no prospects of removing them. Most of these people have been in detention for more than the time they served in prison. Mr C for example, served a 9 month sentence for using a false passport, but now he has been in detention for 19 months ; twice more than the period he spent in prison. If that is not double punishment, we do not know what it is. Mr C recently attempted to commit suicide, after being refused bail for the seventh time, although he had voluntarily requested to return home many times. He is the picture of depression and he has developed the habit of hurting himself at every opportunity he gets. We worry about him a lot, and he is constantly under suicide watch.

The above examples are all average detainees of Colnbrook. Some are less severely effected, whilst others are more disturbed, but all in all they represent the three categories of people being persecuted by the three headed axis of evil - the IND, the AIT and the Detention Centres.

We have repeatedly called for help and intervention, for an investigation of these crimes against humanity. We have appealed and will continue to appeal to whoever is willing to listen, to come to our aid, and exert some control, and restraint on these organisations. We are beginning to believe the silence which has greeted our cries is either inevitable because no one can help, or deliberate because no one will help, or no one is willing to or bold enough to help.

This is why we have resolved to proceed on a declared hunger strike, to begin from the 22/06/2006. There are 40 of us but 5 others already started since 15/06/2006. We will all continue until someone in authority takes notice of our plight. We make the following requests with all respect for the authorities:

1. We humbly demand an audience with the immigration minister Liam Byrne, MP.

2. We request the parliament to set up an independent committee to investigate the injustices being perpetrated by the IND , the AIT and Detention Centres.

3. We request a temporary admission for any detainee in custody for over one month.

4. We humbly request for a temporary work permit for every detainee granted temporary admission, so they can earn a living, and support them. And to those who had work permits before detention, to be reinstated.

5. We request temporary NASS assistance for all detainees made destitute by the long periods of detention. We have resolved that we will embark on any and every form of civil disobedience along with the hunger strike, to make sure our voices are heard. We have decided to go the whole hog. Although we are receiving persecution from DCOs because of our protests, we will not comply with their coercions until we get some results, and our plight is addressed. We cannot go on like this; we are dying slowly, and painfully, in a land where we believed we would find solace, and survival.

We hereby renew our cry to the parliament, the cabinet, the Home Office, the press, the good people of UK, the European Union and the United Nations. Someone please hear us, someone please listen to us, someone help us and answer us. We beseech you in the name of every humanitarian virtue, in the name of mankind, and above all in the name of God, the creator and judge of all men - stop this detention. Stop the killing of the spirits of countless able young men.

We plead for an Amnesty For All.

Colnbrook detainee's forum

End of Bulletin:

Source for this Message:
Colnbrook detainee's forum