Hunger strike and protests now in 3 UK migration prisons 08/05/2014 (ENGL)

https://network23.org/antiraids/2014/05/07/hunger-strike-and-protests-now-in-3-uk-migration-prisons/

In Italiano:
http://hurriya.noblogs.org/post/2014/05/07/uk-sciopero-della-fame-e-proteste-in-tre-prigioni-per-migranti/

See also new video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ow8MaauT13c

Events so far as of Wednesday 7 May 2PM.

On Friday (2 May) over 150 detainees in Harmondsworth migration prison
occupied the main courtyard in a sit down protest and began a mass hunger
strike. On Monday (5 May) supporters held solidarity noise demos outside
Harmondsworth and simultaneously at Dungavel (Scotlans). Yesterday evening
(Tuesday 6 May) protests started to spread to Colnbrook and Brook House
migration prisons.

At lunchtime on Friday 2 May over 150 people detained in Harmondsworth,
the UK’s largest migration prison run by corporation GEO group for the
Home Office, staged a sit-down occupation of the main courtyard and began
hunger strike. They issued a set of demands (see below) protesting against
the ‘Fast Track’ system, under which refugees seeking asylum are
immediately imprisoned before their claims are even heard, as well as
further mistreatment in detention.

The protestors stayed in the courtyard until the evening, when the Home
Office sent 3 officials to meet with delegates of the protestors. The
officials took a petition signed by all of the protestors, and said they
would reply to the demands on Tuesday 6 May. The detainees decided to
suspend their hunger strike while they waited for the response.

On Monday (5 May) solidarity noise demos took place at Harmondsworth and
also at Dungavel detention centre in Scotland. At Harmondsworth, over 30
people made lots of noise with pots, pans, drums, whistles, etc. to let
the detainees know they are not alone. The people locked inside waved and
held up signs to the windows with messages such as ‘Unlawful Detention’
and ‘No Healthcare’. There was also contact over the phone, and the
prisoners said they were really glad of the support.

No big surprise, the Home Office broke its promise and still (1.30 PM
Wednesday 7 May) hasn’t given any reply to the protestors. Instead they
have moved rapidly to issue deportation tickets to several dozen people
involved in the protest.

However, yesterday (Tuesday 6 may) the unrest began to spread. In
Colnbrook detention centre, built right next to Harmondsworth, guards
broke up an organising meeting of 40 detainees inside Colnbrook yesterday
and put five ‘ringleaders’ in isolation cells, before moving them to
another secure facility. Supporters have since been unable to contact the
men.

Then at 10pm last night a group of 20 men detained at Brook House IRC near
Gatwick staged a protest in the courtyard and refused to return to their
cells.

The prisoners have been particularly asking for us to help spread their
words and voices as widely as possible beyond the prison walls. They face
a tough struggle ahead, and need our active solidarity.

Against all borders and prisons.

***

For further updates check:

http://network23.org/antiraids
twitter: @antiraids

http://unitycentreglasgow.org
twitter: @UnityCentreGlas

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