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This is a call out for court solidarity at a judicial review hearing for asylum for Aderonke Apata, a human rights and LGBT rights activist from Nigeria who would be seriously at risk if deported to Nigeria. We are joining a long list of other organisations in demanding #AsylumforAderonke.

Details

When: Tuesday 3 March

Where: Royal Courts of Justice, Strand, WC2A 2LL. Meet at the main massive court arches on the Strand, by the zebra crossing (https://goo.gl/maps/Lhljl).

What time: Meet at 8:30am at the court, although you’re still welcome if you can only come later in the day!

Also:

  • Share the Facebook event, and invite your friends! https://www.facebook.com/events/774059142690902/
  • Bring PLACARDS AND SIGNS about Aderonke’s case. You can use the ones Aderonke made (at https://drive.google.com/folderview…), or make your own! Aderonke’s suggested a few phrases you may want to use: Asylum for Aderonke Now; Grant Nigerian Lesbian Aderonke Asylum Now; Aderonke, LGBT Positive Role Model Must Stay; Aderonke, Human Rights Activist Must Stay.
  • Bring RAINBOW FLAGS if you have them. This is a specific request from Aderonke! If not, we have rainbow badges!

Important: Aderonke has also asked that we do not chant outside the court or cause any hassle inside the court because she doesn’t want to annoy the court and affect her case.

About Aderonke

Aderonke, as part of her determined campaigning on LGBT issues and more. Feminist and human right activist, Aderonke is a Nigerian-born out and proud lesbian seeking asylum in the UK. She fled torture and the threat of death for being a lesbian in Nigeria, and has proved to be an unstoppable force in fighting for justice. In spite of terrible violence and human rights violations, Aderonke has chosen to stand up not only for herself, but for others who have experienced injustice.

Aderonke grew up in Nigeria where being gay or transgender is illegal. Aderonke was arrested, tortured and extorted by the Nigerian Police and forced to endure the murder of three members of her family and girlfriend. When sentenced to death by a Nigerian Sharia court, Aderonke had no other choice than to flee to the UK and seek asylum.

Aderonke has garnered almost 320,000 signatures online for her personal campaign to remain in the UK because she is a lesbian from Nigeria who is open, out and proud. Setting an example through this struggle fighting for her own freedom to stay here in the UK, she fights tirelessly for other people’s freedom too and continue to challenge the government and legal system that penalises the many LGBT refugees seeking asylum in the UK.

Please sign Aderonke’s petition.

Other groups supporting this call out:

* Africanrainbowfamily
* Manchester MiSol (Migrant Solidarity)
* London Black Revs
* Sex Worker Open University
* NovaraMedia
* Out And Proud
* LGBT Unity + Unity Centre Glasgow
* The Glass Is Half Full
* Never Again Ever
* South London Solidarity Federation and North London Solfed
* London Campaign Against Police and State Violence
* UK Black Pride
* Proud2Be
* Unite The Union NW/389
* Broken Rainbow UK
* Lesbian Immigration Support Group (LISG)
* Right to Remain
* Unison LGBT
* Safety4Sisters
* Women Asylum Seekers Together
* SOAS Detainee Support (SDS)

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The summing up at the inquest into the death of Habib “Paps” Ullah starts today.

Please follow the hashtags #Papsinquest and #7YearsNoJustice to get updates and breaking news over the next few days, and retweet the tweets. The campaign’s Twitter is @Justice4Paps.

All news and daily reports from the inquest can be read on Justice4Paps website.

About the case

Habib ‘Paps’ Ullah died on Thursday 3rd July 2008 after being thrown to the ground during a stop and search by police officers in a car park in High Wycombe. He was 39 years old and leaves behind a young family.

Justice4Paps have fought for nearly seven years to ensure answers and justice through an inquest. An initial inquest in 2010 was stopped part way through at the request of the Independent Police Complaints Commission, after officers said that they had changed their accounts of the night based on legal advice.

For more information, watch this video:

http://www.presstv.ir/Video/2015/02/04/395997/Inquest-into-man-who-died-in-police-custody-starts-in-UK

Since Habib’s death in 2008 there have been two other deaths in custody in High Wycombe and Slough of African-Caribbean men. In the last 18 months there have been five Muslim deaths in custody in the UK and as campaigners Justice4Paps have been active in supporting those families and other victims of police harassment and brutality. If you are able, please consider making a donation to Justice4Paps to enable them to continue their essential work.

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On Friday 13th February, The London Evening Standard published an edited version of a letter we wrote in relation to their story on One hundred more police officers armed with Tasers to patrol in London, you can read their version here: Letters to the editor: We must resist the spread of Tasers

We publish our full statement with references to underline our commitment to fighting institutional racism in the Metropolitan Police. Thanks to our volunteers who collectively put a lot of work in putting this statement together in a short space of time:

The decision to increase the number of police officers armed with what the Metropolitan Police call ‘less-lethal weapons’ is a dangerous, knee-jerk reaction to a possible threat. Tasers are not ‘non-lethal weapons’. In 2012, a report produced by the American Heart Association stated unequivocally that Tasers can cause cardiac arrest and death. Between 2001 and 2013 there were 540 deaths resulting from the use of stun gun’s by US police officers. Before this announcement figures from 2013 showed that police usage of Tasers in England & Wales had more than doubled from 2009 levels. Alarmingly those figures also showed that Metropolitan Police used Tasers 53 times on London’s children which was a sharp increase.

Theresa May cited London Assembly evidence which revealed that 50% of people Tasered in the UK are from black or other minority ethnic backgrounds and 30% are emotionally or mentally distressed and ordered a review, this action seems to fly in the face of that. Given that BME people make up only 14% of the population, these figures are incredibly disproportionate and clearly indicate that the Metropolitan Police Service remains institutionally racist.

We believe unarmed vulnerable and/or BME people will be put at greater risk. The Commissioner’s assertion that an increase in Taser deployment is necessary to deal with the threat of terrorism is without evidential basis and indicative of the authoritative creep in counter-terrorism policing. This move will bring more, not less, violence to the capital’s streets

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