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Friday, November 03, 2006

Encouraging Developments on the Home (Office) Front

La Russophobe has previously reported on efforts by the British Home Office to deny the existence of race persecution in Russia despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. Recently, the even the British Foriegn Office confirmed the horrific dangers faced by dark-skinned people in Russia. Now those involved with the original story have made a status report to La Russophobe regarding their efforts to save the victims of race persecution from deportation to Russia, and it's good news for the victims of oppression! Here is the report (the name of the subject is withheld to protect his privacy):

We are pleased to be able to report a successful outcome of the appeal in the British Courts by a mixed-race Russian couple to be allowed to remain in the UK . Although this decision has implications only for mixed-race couples the effect of this judgement is still profound. British judges have now ruled that racism is so rampant in the Russian Federation that there is no safe place in the country where a mixed-race couple can settle without persecution.

Mr A, who is of Asian extraction, suffered a series of a racist attacks in cities across Russia. Beaten by skinheads in one city, he would flee to another only to fall victim one again. He lost teeth, sustained a damaged spine, and carries dozens of scars on his body from a particularly vicious knife attack. Along the way, he has learned that the authorities simply don’t care about people like him and won’t do anything to protect them.


In fact, the "militsia" [police] were worse than incompetent. Not only did they not bother to investigate the crimes against him; sometimes it was they who beat him up. A number of times he was arrested for no reason (unless you count the colour of his skin, which they obviously did); he was beaten in custody and held in a dark cell the floor of which was inches deep in water. His wife would not know what had happened to him for days. She would just have to wait to see if he reappeared or had been killed.


One time he did have a lucky escape. The militsia stopped him to inspect his papers at a railway station. They were in order, of course, but that doesn’t usually make any difference. The officers still told him they were going to take him down to the police station. They hadn’t counted on his wife who, this time, was travelling with him. She had enough legal experience, coupled with a Russian’s scant respect for uniformed authority, to stand up to them. And she was white, so she could get away with it easier. When she demanded to know what they were doing and said she was a lawyer and would be coming with him, they backed off and let him go.


Thousands of dark-skinned Russians are not so lucky.


Then one night a gang came and smashed the windows of his flat. This is no minor act of petty vandalism when it is -35C outside. Everything freezes. Some appliances are destroyed straight away. When the thaw comes the pipes burst and the rest of the home is wrecked. The family (there were also three children) locked themselves in the bathroom in the centre of the flat until the stones stopped flying. The mob then torched their car.


Mr A and his family fled to the UK but they found that their problems weren’t over. An administrative mix-up meant that their asylum papers weren’t put in on time and the British Home Office refused to hear their case, slating them for deportation instead. It took four years of court cases and legal fights before the British Courts finally overruled the Home Office.


In a final court hearing that sometimes seemed as surreal as the Russian courts they had left behind, the Home Office argued vigorously that there were parts of Russia that were safe, basing their argument on the precedent of a previous British court ruling which had sent a mixed-race couple back to Rostov on Don. On the first morning of the case the Moscow Times reported a racist attack in Rostov .


Undaunted, the Home Office continued to press their case. “Where will you fly them back to?” one of the judges asked. The Home Office lawyer shrugged. “ Moscow. ” As LR has reported at length, Moscow is one of the most dangerous places in Russia for a black man to be. Not surprisingly, the judges found in Mr A’s favour.


Even though it was forced to bow to the inevitable, the British Government does not come out of this smelling sweet. Originally, the Home Office insisted that if Mr A. had problems with racist attacks he should just go and ask the militsia for help. Anybody who knows Russia knows how laughable that suggestion is.


Under English law an asylum seeker whose initial appeal is turned down is forbidden from working or receiving any social security benefit.They are allowed to appeal but they enter a state of enforced destitution in which they have to rely on the charity of others or the black economy (or crime) to survive; they are allowed to appeal but they aren’t allowed to earn the few pennies needed to put a stamp on a letter to their lawyer; they have to report monthly to the authorities (a humiliating procedure where Home Office staff, often only second generation immigrants, treat them with undisguised contempt) but they cannot earn the £10 it costs to travel to the reporting centre each month. If they don’t report, they will be arrested.


It took three years of fighting just to get a court order to be allowed to present their case. The Home Office had shut the file when their original application was late and launched deportation proceedings. The judge said he was extremely disturbed by the Home Office’s handling of their case and ordered the HO to give Mr A a proper hearing.


The decision in that Home Office hearing was a foregone conclusion. Officials in Britain are like officials anywhere - they don’t like losing face and they don’t like being told what to do. They dismissed Mr A’s asylum appeal out of hand. That was expected. Mr A’s legal team guessed it would have to be taken right up to an independent tribunal.


Mr A had to suffer another year of destitution before the slow wheels of justice finally moved on enough for him to be able to take his case to an independent tribunal. The case was fixed for January 2006 but the Home Office dragged their heels and got it postponed for six months just 48 hours before it was due to come to court. No reason was ever given. It is thought they hadn’t managed to get their papers prepared in time. For them it is just a job. For the refugees it is their life.


In the end, as already described, the tribunal threw the Home Office case out. The Government knew they were beaten and gave up.


But it didn’t end there.


Now, over four years after his arrival in the UK, the Home Office continue to inflict one final indignity upon Mr A (remember - a court has now accepted that he has fled to Britain in fear of his life, he is not making his story up and that he is genuinely traumatised by the violence he has suffered).


It is three months since he won his case. The Home Office still won’t issue him papers to confirm that he has been given permission to stay in the UK , permission he has won in court.
He has tried to find out what is going on but no one can tell him. He has managed to discover one thing, though. Although the tribunal found in his favour in mid July, the HO computer still hasn’t registered that case has even been heard.

So he just has to wait.


He has spent four years doing that so that’s nothing new. For how long? Six months? Another year? Nobody knows. No one will tell him. And nobody seems to care.


At least, he says, he doesn’t now have to fear for his life every time he steps out of the front door.


9 comments:

17 ugly raccoons said...

Another good news. Take them all to Britain, to US, anywhere, and we'll deal with our hooligans ourselves. In exchange, please, send us Berezovsky, many Russians who lost their money on his affairs would speak to this stalwart defender of democracy.

La Russophobe said...

UGLY:

Are you so feeble that you have to beg for B.B.? Can't you go and get him yourself? Oh no! That's right!You couldn't even keep him from slipping in and out of Kyrgyzstan, could you? Ouch. Sorry I mentioned it.

Meanwhile, let's see: America has a big sign on its front door saying "give me your huddled masses yearning to breathe free" and Russia has the opposite view. And America has a population double that of Russia, an economy 20 times larger, and 100 times more Nobel prizes. Gee, I which one of the the two countries is on the right track and which isn't . . . sure is complicated . . .

17 ugly raccoons said...

Are you so feeble that you have to beg for B.B.? Can't you go and get him yourself?

All requests have been made. Are you suggesting Putin should send assassination squad?

BTW, it is good to know US have no problems with immigrants.

La Russophobe said...

UGLY: "Requests"? Is Russia's influence in the world so puny that it can only make requests? Why not demands? Britian has one-third Russia's population, surely you can influence them, can't you? If not, gee, LR can't help but wonder why . . . don't Russia's many close friends around the world rally to its aid? Oh that's right, Russia doesn't have any friends, does it . . .

BTW, it's good to know Russians have no problems with native Slavs.

BBTW, no, LR wouldn't suggest assasination squads. She knows full well that Russia hasn't got the guts to go after a rich man who can defend himself. Russians can only handle soft targets like Politkovskaya.

17 ugly raccoons said...

"Requests"? Is Russia's influence in the world so puny that it can only make requests?

International right is the reason, perhaps. You know, when one country needs something from another, then immediate bombing is not best solution.

it's good to know Russians have no problems with native Slavs.

AFAIK, Russians are native Slavs.

She knows full well that Russia hasn't got the guts to go after a rich man who can defend himself.

Names 'Dudayev', 'Maskhadov', 'Yandarbiyev' rings a bell for her?

penny said...

Besides bigotry and hostility to "dark-skinned" ethic groups which the homeboy skinheads attack with encouragement and impunity, Russians are anti-Semitic to the core too. It's never far below the surface. One of Stalin's last show trials was "the doctors plot":

Initially, thirty-seven were arrested, but the number quickly grew into hundreds. Scores of Soviet Jews were promptly dismissed from their jobs, arrested, sent to gulags or executed. This was accompanied by show trials and by anti-Semitic propaganda in state-run mass media. Pravda published a letter signed by many Soviet notables (including Jews) containing incitive condemnations of the "plot".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doctors'_plot

I've seen Russian websites devoted to smearing Jews. It fits with their culture of envy and xenophobia.

17 ugly raccoons said...

:-))))))))))))))))

First sign of sloppy thinking - person speaks about some tendency without specifying the measure of that tendency. Russians are anti-Semitic. Arabs are terrorists. Westerners are stupid. Americans are fat, and US women are ugly. Yeah, right.

BTW, LR, I hope you already found childish mistake (you call these things 'mistakes', I call these 'lies', but it is not important right now) in your post 'Postcard from the Moscow Millionaire Fair'. Or should I point to it? Tsk, tsk, what a shame.

penny said...

Berezovsky will not be extradited from Britain because the British courts know full well he would never get a fair trial in Russia, just like Khordorkovsky didn't. Khordorkovsky was the victim of Stalin's, oops, Putin, now Stalin the Lessor's show trails.

Refused bail, no jury of his peers, displayed in a cage, unable to sit with his attorneys, cut off from his attorneys at will, a trail like Khordorkovsky's could only happen in a thug state.

What a miserable wasteland Russia is. Too many of the pathetic sheeple inhabiting it would rather live on their knees. It's as if nothing is too humilitating for them to act upon. As communism ended badly, the next round of Russian misery will end as pathetically.

17 ugly raccoons said...

Yes, and communism ended by itself, not because Russians acted upon. Very, very convincing.

And pathetic sheeple inhabiting Russia would rather live on their knees than hear some Western advising to stand up and die for freedom. Call others to fight and die but not risk herself - what a despicable creature she is... Ignorant too, but despicable first.