Mass deportation to West Africa blockaded & resisted by Yarl’s Wood women

Protestors superglued themselves to the gates of Colnbrook detention centre near Heathrow airport on Tuesday night, blocking a coach carrying detainees due to be forcibly expelled to Nigeria, Ghana and Sierra Leone. Women due to be taken for the flight from Yarl’s Wood immigration prison in Bedfordshire also resisted their deportation. Coaches are normally sent to different immigration prisons to collect detainees before converging on the airport for charter flights.

The blockade delayed the flight for over five hours, but it went ahead regardless. The protest in Yarl’s Wood meant that only 6 or 7 detainees were taken from there to the airport; 40 had been due to fly. Detainees are locked in individual cells the day before & phones are taken from them to reduce the risk of collective resistance.

The flight is thought to have been operated from Stansted Airport by charter airline Titan Airways. One detainee said “it’s about 90 per cent of us that don’t want to go, the other 10 per cent don’t want to go either, but they are tired of being humiliated so they say they are ready.”

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