Hundreds of ads on the tube replaced to raise awareness about mass deportations from the UK as part of an international 2 weeks of action organised by groups in UK, Nigeria and Jamaica against mass deportations through charter flights.
London, UK – As part of a two weeks of international action against charter flights, a group called End Deportations has replaced hundreds of adverts on the tube with posters raising awareness about mass deportations through charter flights that regularly deports people from the UK who often have ongoing claims or refused asylum claims, preventing them from accessing their legal rights.
Those deported have partners, children and friends in this country; they are being forcefully separated by mass deportation that targets particular communities rather than basing it individual immigration cases. Protests and other events have been organised at the Nigerian Embassy, in London, Lagos, Cambridge and Glasgow. Cathy, a member of the group End Deportations, stated: “We demand no more deportations, an end to charter flights and the racist detention system, that imprisons people indefinitely.”
The subvertising campaign consists of two different posters.
One is a quotation from a person deported on a charter flight in May 2016 recorded on the website detainedvoices.com:
‘It really reminds us of the history you read about slaves. When they used to take people and put them in the ships, to take them and go and sell them. Now, they are doing this here. Yarls Wood is a slave ship. They take you from here and put you on a charter flight. When you look in Yarls Wood there is no white person in here, we are all Indian, Chinese and African. It is racism. I have been in England 20 years, I paid my taxes, paid my NI. My back is hurt from lifting older people, working with disabled children. I worked with all my heart.’
The second one reads:
‘This January, some 50 UK residents will be rounded up and forcibly deported to Nigeria, in secret.
- Some have been here most of their life.
- Some will leave children and partners behind.
- Some have legal cases pending. The deportation will stop them accessing their rights.
- There are 3 or 4 secret charter flights per month to Albania, Ghana, Nigeria, Pakistan or Jamaica.
- Each charter flight costs over £250,000 of public money.’
About Charter Flights
The UK government runs regular charter flights to Albania, Ghana, Nigeria, Pakistan or Jamaica. Charter flights target long established communities in the UK to deport people and thus disrupting their lives, forcibly separating them from their partners, children and friends. In August 2015, Phil Miller, a researcher at Corporate Watch said: “It looks like the Home Office is rounding up groups of migrants from particular countries so it can fill a deportation flight, instead of removing people based on their individual immigration cases.”
When being deported on such a flight, people are being prevented from accessing their legal rights. It is unclear whether Charter Flights are illegal under international law preventing mass collective expulsions. Challenging mass deportations legally has become increasingly difficult in the light of legal aid cuts and a detention system that separates individuals from their communities and forms of support. Each charter flight costs the UK government £250,000 of public money.
About the coordinated action against charter flights
The international 2 weeks of actions aims to bring people together to fight against the racist and unruly policy of charter flight mass deportations. For more information about the 2-week collaboration see the website enddeportations.wordpress.com and the twitter hashtag #enddeportations. It is a coordinated action in Nigeria, in Jamaica and in the UK by groups such as Movement For Justice (London), Nigeria Deportation Group (Lagos), Unity Centre (Glasgow) and Roots to Return (Glasgow and Lagos).
‘We tagged along with activists ad-hacking the tube.’ Huck Magazine.