Al Jazeera

Somali man ‘dragged bleeding through airport’ in forced removal ordeal

A Somali man forcibly returned to Mogadishu from the UK under a controversial new scheme to send home failed asylum seekers has described how he was punched and kicked by the British guards who accompanied him, and left bleeding in a cell after having a tooth knocked out.

African Union soldiers prepare for an attack on al-Shabaab rebels in southern Somalia.  [AMISOM]

African Union soldiers prepare for an attack on al-Shabaab rebels in southern Somalia. [AMISOM]

The man, who did not want to be identified because he fears for his safety, also told Al Jazeera how he was restrained in handcuffs for most of his journey aboard Turkish Airlines flights via Istanbul and pressured by his escorts to sign a document stating that he had returned to his homeland voluntarily.

Speaking on the telephone from the Somali capital, he said he was resigned to dying in a city that is still plagued by ambushes and bombings and considered unacceptably dangerous for returning refugees by most humanitarian organisations.

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Al Jazeera

Somalis in UK fear ‘death sentence’ returns to Mogadishu

When Ismail finally touched down on British soil early last year after many months being smuggled over land and through the air from Somalia he believed he was finally on the verge of beginning a new life.

Several Somalis have been held in immigrant detention centres pending removal [Home Office]

Several Somalis have been held in immigrant detention centres pending removal [Home Office]

“The Britain I had in mind was one in which they welcomed people of different colour, different religion and different backgrounds and where human rights were respected,” Ismail, who preferred not to use his real name, told Al Jazeera.

“I wanted to live in a safe place where I could just study and work and help my family and support myself, so what happened to me was a big shock.”

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