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From The Socialist newspaper, 2 November 2006

Cyprus: Fight for Kurdish asylum rights

SAAID ALHACHEMI, a Kurdish asylum seeker, has been imprisoned illegally by the Greek Cypriot government for 20 days. This is yet another example of the Greek Cypriot state's harassment of Kurdish asylum seekers.

Saaid, who is a supporter of the Committee for a Workers' International (CWI), was imprisoned and threatened with deportation due to an administrative error. Even after it came to light that he was being illegally kept in jail because of a mistake, the authorities refused to release him! Only after action co-ordinated by the CWI in Cyprus was the state forced to release Saaid. Since his release, Saaid has been harassed and intimidated by police trying to get him to withdraw his appeal against deportation.

Saaid is one of many Kurdish refugees from Syria who last May fought for their legal rights as refugees and are now are being attacked, victimised and threatened with deportation. It seems that the Greek Cypriot government are acting vindictively and singling out Kurds who were involved in the protest movement.

They know full well that if sent back to Syria these refugees face the prospect of harassment, arrest and torture.

The winning of Saaid's release shows the importance of international solidarity work and the effect it can have. The CWI is calling for a day of action on Friday 10 November. In London the Socialist Party is organising a lobby of the Cypriot embassy. We are also calling on all members and supporters of the Socialist Party to write letters of protest against the attacks on Kurdish refugee rights.

Greg Maughan

Demonstrate outside the Cypriot embassy, Friday 10 November, 4.00pm, at 93 Park Street, London, W1.

Send letters of protest to:

Dimitris Christofias, President of Parliament, general secretary of AKEL, president@parliament.cy

N. Silikiotis, Minister of Interior, cgregoriades@moi.gov.cy

Office of the Ombudsman, ombudsman@ombudsman.gov.cy

Government spokesman, govspokesman@pio.moi.gov.cy

And sent copies to:

CWI general address and youthagainstnationalism@gmail.gr

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In The Socialist 2 November 2006:

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