About

This website was set up to publicise the campaign to prevent the deportation of Hicham Yezza (Hich to his many friends).

Hicham has lived in Nottingham for 13 years while he studied for undergraduate and postgraduate degrees and worked at the university, where he has built up a large network of close friends. The huge campaign to prevent his deportation is a testament to this. He served as a member of the University Senate for two terms (2004-5) and on the Student’s Union Executive Committee, was President of the Arabic Society, was the editor of the influential Voice magazine for international students, and is the long-time editor of Ceasefire magazine, a political journal. He was a prominent member of the artistic group ‘Al-Zaytouna’, and weeks before his arrest performed the leading role in a feature play at Nottingham Arts Theatre. Numerous references have been collected from reputable professors and prominent members of the local and national community that testify to his integrity and strong roots in the city. He lives and works in Nottingham and has shown every intention of fighting his case, as he thinks he has excellent grounds to remain in the U.K.

His deportation follows his arrest under the Terrrorism Act 2000. This occurred after Rizawaan Sabir, a student acquaintance who was studying political Islam emailed a copy of an Al Qaeda training manual he was using for his research to Hich as Rizwaan couldn’t afford to print it. After the document was seen, the police were called. They arrested Hich and Rizwaan, searched their homes, seized their computers and interrogated friends and family. Both were released without charge and the university has subsequently been forced to admit that the documents were legitimate research material.

Despite his innocence, Hich was immediately re-arrested under immigration legislation on charges which he sought legal advice and representation over. However on Friday May 23 his solicitor was told that Hich was being deported and he was moved to a detention centre. It is clear from Hicham’s legal documentation that there could be no reason to disallow him bail and push for his removal before his set trial date, except that the immigration services are determined to remove him without allowing him due process.

The circumstances of Hich’s initial arrest sparked widespread protest from students and academics, and extensive critical media coverage. Many people have drawn a link between this and the authorities’ hurried attempts to remove him from the country. Regardless of whether this is a politically motivated action or not, it is clear that he has not been given the chance to argue his case in court, which he his perfectly happy to do.

11 responses to “About

  1. Daniel Charters

    This is truely horrible and absolutely cannot be allowed to happen. I see a great deal of xenophobia emerging from the war on ‘terror’ and see this as a direct result of that. I will be at the march on wednesday 28th and I urge anyone else who is unsure to come along as well.

  2. i have met hich 10 years ago he was very young
    very entousiastic very hard working never had any problem we come from the same country as i m algerian too i can not believe the the real badys gets away with things i can easily use names but i m not going to ,hicham c est nawal
    j espere que tous va s arranger ont va faire tous notre possible pur to sortire de la
    d ont worry i m sure evry one shares the same opinion

    love nawal steve et zinedine booth

  3. Dr Brian Robinson

    The authorities do seem to be in something of a panic and it’s driving them to act counter-productively in many instances. This seems a particularly blatant example and I support the campaign for his freedom – the authorities must issue a declaration of his innocence, with apologies for wrongful arrest.

  4. Nottingham University should hang its head in shame.

  5. Take a look at this site, set up by yet more of his friends http://freehicham.co.uk/

  6. Free H. Z= free education and high search!!

  7. This is a disgrace! There is no real evidence that he has done anything wrong and to the contrary huge amounts of evidece about how much hes achieved and contributed to the university community at Nottingham. This is nothing more than an hysterical reaction, unfair and unjust. If England starts deporting people like this it will further incite anger and resentment amongst ethnic minorities in the uk.
    We cant let that happen!

  8. salut hichem nous sommes tres fiers de toi .ce qui t arrive n est qu une epreuve de la vie continue a faire ce que tu as toujours fais et reste comme tu es brave honnete authentique et digne surtout .bisous tata hou

  9. Dear Hicham Yezza,

    I have read about your story and I am enraged by what is happening to you. Not only your rights are being brutally abused, but also a criminal act of censorship against scholar research is being perpetrated. Totalitarian regimes always started by claiming national security was at stake. We are not there, but Europe has high fever.

    Keep strong,

    V.

  10. I have worked with Hicham and can honestly say he is one of the most intelligent people I have met. He is of good character and has contributed positively to the academic and social atmosphere at Nottingham University. His achievements include the creation of the Voice Magazine and Re-Fresher’s Fare.

    I hope that the Home office take his contributions to the lives of thousands of students at Nottingham University when considering his case.

  11. P. R. Adamczyk-Haswell

    I contacted my MP about Hicham’s arrest and detention. He took this up with the UK Border Agency, whose Deputy Chief Executive replied to him. If you would like a scan of the reply, please let me know.

    Peter

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