UK public figures urge airlines not to facilitate upcoming deportation of J'cans

UK public figures urge airlines not to facilitate upcoming deportation of J'cans

Saturday, November 28, 2020

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — Scores of black public figures in the United Kingdom are urging airlines not to facilitate the deportation of some 50 Jamaicans next week.

According to The Guardian newspaper, a letter, which had 82 signatories, has been sent to six airlines known to have previously worked with the Home Office on deportation charter flights.

It urges the airline chiefs to refuse to operate the flight on December 2 if approached by the Home Office and to pause the operation of deportation flights to Commonwealth countries for the foreseeable future.

The flight would be the second to Jamaica this year.

The public figures warned that if this flight and others like it go ahead, there is a risk of the unlawful removal of people who have the right to remain in the UK.

One of the men deported from the UK to Jamaica on a charter flight in February 2020 was the grandson of a woman who arrived on the Empire Windrush and is still seeking to have his deportation order revoked, The Guardian reported.

Signatories to the letter include model Naomi Campbell, author Bernardine Evaristo, historian David Olusoga and actors Naomie Harris and Thandie Newton, as well as lawyers, broadcasters and NGO chiefs.

The newspaper said Windrush campaigners including Michael Braithwaite and Elwaldo Romeo have also signed.

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