The Socialist Unity Network

Bardici Family Must Stay in Hackney

Allison Bennett

     Xhevahir and Ajkune Bardici are asylum seekers from Kosovo. They have lived in the UK for six and a half years and have made a new life for themselves in Hackney, London.

    They fled the persecution of Albanians in Kosovo, in the 1990's and spent some time in Germany before they arrived in the UK in December 1997.  They made a claim for asylum which was refused in May 1998.  At that time removals to Germany of Kosovan Albanians were suspended so they were allowed to remain in the UK. 

     While they were living in the UK they had a son, Arber, who is now four years old and a daughter, Anita who is six months old.  They were housed in a council flat in Hackney, East London and have lived there for five years. 

     Arber has learning difficulties related to autism and has enrolled in school where his communication skills have improved.  The family have made friends on the estate where they live who have written to their MP supporting their application to remain in the UK.

     On 1st June 2004  the family were detained.  They have been moved between detention centres four times since then including one period spent in Dungavel in Scotland.  They are currently in Oakington Detention Centre. 

     They were due to be removed on 21st June but the flight was cancelled when their MP intervened.  However, another removal date has been set for 8th July. 

     The last five weeks have been a terrible strain on the family.  Ajkune is worried about her baby who is unable to sleep in the detention centre as it is so noisy and has stopped feeding as a result.  She was weighed in Dungavel and found to be underweight.   Arber, the four year old, is finding it difficult to cope with the disruption to his daily life. 

     If they are removed to Germany they will face months if not years of more disruption and upheaval and disintegrating health. One only has to remember what happened to the Ahmadi Family who were deported illegally by our government to Germany in August 2002, and the Ay Family who were also deported to Germany on August the 5th last year. Both families are still in Germany, living in miserable conditions and both families have suffered deteriorating health problems, in particular the Ahmadi Family.

     Now the Bardici Family face the same fate as the Ahmadi and Ay Families, if they are deported to Germany. Ultimately they may be returned to Kosovo where they have no home and where services for children with learning difficulties are poor if there are any at all.

    What you can do to help:
    The Bardici Family Must Stay in Hackney Campaign  is calling on everyone to Fax/write to the Minister for Immigration - Des Browne - requesting that the Family is allowed to stay. You can use the model letter attached. Copy/amend/write your own version, feel free to add your own comments.

     You can fax Des Browne on 020 7273 2043, or from outside the UK +44 20 7273 2043

Or write direct to:

Des Browne
Minister for Immigration
Home Office
50 Queen Annes Gate

Please take time to send a copy of anything sent to:
Bardici Family Must Stay in Hackney
c/o Hackney Migrant and Refugee Support Group
Room 228
Tudorleaf Business Centre
2-8 Fountayne Road
London N15 4QL

Enquiries/further information:
Allison Bennett



July 2004


For Socialist Unity ~ For Internationalism ~ For Peace ~ For Justice ~ For Unity ~ For Socialism