S.Lanka detains asylum seekers expelled by Britain

29th September 2011, Comments 1 comment

Sri Lanka's police detained 50 failed asylum seekers flown back to the country Thursday after being expelled from Britain, police said.

Eight women and 42 men -- mostly ethnic minority Tamils-- were deported by Britain's Border Agency, which chartered an aircraft to return them home after they failed in a bid for asylum based on their alleged risk of persecution.

"They are being questioned by police detectives," an airport official said without giving details.

In June, a group of 20 Sri Lankans were sent back from Britain, drawing criticism from international rights groups which expressed fears that the deportees were at risk of torture once they got home.

London-based rights group Amnesty International said at least one of the failed asylum seekers had tried to commit suicide at an airport detention facility in June following death threats he reportedly received.

Thousands of Sri Lankans, mainly ethnic Tamils, had sought refuge in the West and neighbouring India during the the decades-long war which pitched government forces against Tamil separatists.

Amnesty had said that the end of the conflict two years ago had not diminished the risks faced by failed Sri Lankan asylum seekers. Amnesty maintains that deportees face arrest and detention upon their return.

Government forces crushed separatist Tamil Tiger rebels in a major military campaign that ended in May 2009 and sparked allegations of war crimes.

© 2011 AFP

1 Comment To This Article

  • Robert Park posted:

    on 29th September 2011, 14:29:00 - Reply

    While I sympathise with those Sri Lankans at the same time we in the UK have our own problems and we do not need to inherit more. They would be better seeking ways of resolving their own county's problems like the IRA are doing today in the UK and without conflict.