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Refugee Week 2008 - Refugee Action Group event

In support of asylum-seekers in Northern Ireland who may be detained, the Refugee Action Group has produced an information pack setting out their rights.[i]  Those rights include the right to liberty, the right to legal advice and representation and health care rights in detention. 

Since 2006, asylum-seekers are routinely locked up in police cells in Northern Ireland and then taken to detention centres in Scotland and England where they are detained indefinitely[ii].  Belfast has witnessed the high-profile detention and removal of two African asylum-seeking families in recent months, despite political consensus supporting their case to stay here. 

MLA, Alex Maskey, said: 

“Many asylum seekers come here in the hope of finding a welcome and understanding society and sometimes, as a number of asylum seeking families have experienced this year, this may not be the case.  In my experience many arrive here with little understanding of language and culture and find themselves in a very hostile detention situation and as a result feel isolated and extremely vulnerable. I would therefore greatly welcome this initiative by the Refugee Action Group. The advice and information contained within the pack will be invaluable to those who find themselves in a position to need to avail of it.” 

The information pack will be launched during Refugee Week 2008 in the Long Gallery at Stormont Parliament Buildings at 2 PM on 17 June.  

For more info: Anna Morvern on (028) 9024 4401

JOIN THE REFUGEE ACTION GROUP   [i] The Refugee Action Group is a coalition of NGOs, voluntary sector organisations, refugees and individuals with an interest in refugee issues in Northern Ireland. See [ii] There is no maximum period for immigration detention in the UK.

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