UK: Stop Deporting Tamils to Sri Lanka

  • by: Carin Cowell
  • target: Damien Green, Minister of State for Immigration, and the UK Borders Agency,
The British Government has been accused of deporting ethnic Tamils asylum seekers to Sri Lanka despite evidence that they are at risk of torture.

One man, who has managed to return to the UK following his deportation, reported that he was arrested and beaten with rods before Sri Lankan security officials placed petrol-filled plastic bags over his face and hung him by his feet by a nylon rope. In response, he was accused of supplying the British Government with information in order to destroy diplomatic relations between the two countries.

The UK Government states that it is safe to return Tamils to Sri Lanka; however, Human Rights Watch claims that “the British government’s asylum procedure is failing to identify Tamils at risk of torture.”

Join our call to stop this NOW.

To Damien Green, Minister of State for Immigration, and the UK Borders Agency,

We, the undersigned, support the call from Human Rights Watch for the UK Borders Agency to review their policy on deporting ethnic Tamils to Sri Lanka. There is growing evidence that they are being submitted to torture by security officials upon arrival.

This is in contrary to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, to which the UK is party. The convention states in article 3 that no state “shall expel, return (‘refouler’) or extradite a person to another State where there are substantial grounds for believing that he would be in danger of being subjected to torture.”

We believe that a review is urgently required to ensure that no more asylum seekers are sent back to be brutally tortured. The UK should not be supporting human rights violations.

Thank you for your attention.

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