STOP UAE DEPORTING DISABLED BRITISH RESIDENT CHILD IBRAHIM HASSAN TO SOMALIA
1 April 2014
Ibrahim Hassan is a severely disabled teenager. He was born in the Netherlands and is a Dutch citizen. He has been lawfully residing in Birmingham for 12 years since he arrived in the UK with his family at the age of five and attended Harborne Hill school and Holte school. Ibrahim suffers from a rare form of epilepsy called Unverritcht-Lundborg Disorder, as a result of which he has been wheelchair bound since the age of 10. He finds it difficult to speak and to even grip objects like a cup or a pen.
On 30 March this year, Ibrahim was returning to the UK following an extended visit to see his grandmother in Hargeisa, Somalia with his father and full-time carer, Kaisar Ali. Ibrahim and his father had to transit in Dubai where his ordeal began at approximately 2amon 31 March. The immigration authorities in Dubai accused Mr Ali of using Ibrahim’s passport to try and smuggle in an illegal immigrant from Somalia. They said that Ibrahim looked very different from the picture in his passport and could not speak Dutch, understandable since he is severely disabled and has been living in the UK since the age of five.
Despite the Dutch embassy in the UAE confirming that the passports and passport holders in question are genuine, and that Ibrahim is disabled as claimed, the UAE authorities have continued to retain their passports and hold Ibrahim and his father in detention at the airport. Demonstrating complete disregard for his disability, the UAE authorities have refused to allow Ibrahim to rest in a hotel and left him in his wheelchair for a prolonged period of time causing him intense numbing and pain. When his father realised that they were not allowing them to leave, he had to lift Ibrahim from his wheelchair and lie him down on a steel metal bench. Ibrahim’s condition is worsening. He is unable to speak and repeatedly moaning. Although both father and son are being detained together, Ibrahim is left on his own whenever his father is taken for interrogation.
At approximately 4.30 pm on 31 March 2014, Ibrahim’s father was released from detention and informed that he would be booked on the next available flight. However, when he went to collect the passports, the authorities refused to give them to him explaining that the British embassy had raised issues about Ibrahim and his father.
On 1 April 2014, British officials interviewed Ibrahim’s father asking him a number of questions about Mogadishu where he did not spend any time. The family come from Hargeisa and spent their entire time in Hargeisa, even flying from Hargeisa airport.
The UAE authorities have now stated that they intend to deport Ibrahim and his father to Somalia on Wednesday 2 April 2014.
TAKE URGENT ACTION NOW
1. Contact the Dutch embassy in the UAE and London requesting that they intervene on behalf of their nationals and ensure that Ibrahim and his father are not deported to Somalia and released from detention immediately.
H.E. Gerard Michels
Fax. +971 2 6313158
tel.: 020 7590 3200
fax: 020 7225 0947
2. Contact the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and the British Embassy in the UAE to request that they drop their objections to Ibrahim returning to the UK. Ibrahim is a Dutch national who has the right to permanent residence in the UK where he has lived since he was five years old. His mother and five other siblings are also all resident in the UK.
UK Embassy, UAE
Tel: +971 2 610 1100
Fax: +971 2 610 1609
Foreign & Commonwealth Office
(a) Minister for Foreign Affairs Rt Hon William Hague
Tweet: @williamjhague @foreignoffice
(b) Minister for State (human rights), Baroness Sayeeda Warsi
(c) Minister for State (Middle East) Rt Hon Hugh Robertson