New website

The campaign website has been fully transferred to and this page will soon redirect to that website. We have retained all previous posts and comments.

For the latest information, to write a comment, or to visit the new blog, please visit

Watch Hich perform at the One World Festival!

Hich will take part in his first public performance since his arrest tomorrow (on Sunday May 14) as part of the Al Zaytouna Theatre and Dance troupe of which he is a founding member. The performance will take place at 12pm and at 2.30pm in Nottingham’s Old Market Square as part of the event One City One World.
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Hich on Riseup Radio

Riseup Radio is a monthly community based podcast from Nottingham, UK. Reports on stuff that didn’t make other local media, music from local artists and bands and chatting about stuff that matters. The July show features Hich as a special guest presenter, discussing his case and playing some music. There’s also information on resistance to coal, news opposition to the BNP’s national festival being held in Derbyshire and an exclusive interview with Captain Paul Watson of Sea Shepherd.

Download: mp3 | ogg vorbis

Others: stream link | playlist | more formats

Times Higher Education Supplement letters pages

The Times Higher Education Supplement has covered the terror arrests at Nottingham University extensively and much of this coverage has been sympathetic. This motivated outgoing Vice Chancellor Colin Campbell to write to the publication to restate the university’s position. Others have subsequently responded, leading to a debate in the letters section reprinted below.

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Letter From Research Students To Vice-Chancellor of The University Of Nottingham

Dear Sir Colin,

As research students at the Universities of Oxford, London, Manchester, Kent, Westminster and of the London School of Economics, we have been gravely disturbed by the treatment of Rizwaan Sabir, a fellow student at your institution, and Hicham Yezza, one of your administrative employees. Following their wrongful arrest under anti-terrorism laws on 14 May and their subsequent release after six days in detention, Hicham Yezza faced a total of 31 days in detention in various immigration facilities, threatened with deportation, before being released a few days ago.

The response of your institution to their treatment is of deep concern to anyone who believes in academic freedom.
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Musician releases song ‘Magna Carta’ about Hich

A musician and spoken word artist, Guy C, has released a song called ‘Magna Carta – A Song for Hich’. You can hear it here. The song includes excerpts from an interview that Hicham gave at the University of Nottingham Civil Liberties Conference on April 19, 2008, where he chaired the concluding session. Hich’s role in the Peace Movement featured prominently in his interrogation by counter-terrorism police.

Guy and Hich have been close friends for over ten years.

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First interview with Hicham after his release

Following the cancellation order on his deportation, and after being detained for over 30 days, Hicham Yezza has been released on bail after the Home Office refused to grant him temporary release. He gives his first interview post-release with the BBC here.

Press Release: Hicham Released After 31 days In Detention (15/06/08)

From a group of Nottingham residents, concerned students and academics at the University of Nottingham, UK.

For immediate release 16 June 2008

Following the cancellation order on his deportation, and after being detained for over 30 days, Hicham Yezza has been released on bail after the Home Office refused to grant him temporary release.

Hicham, a prominent political journal editor, writer and University member was arrested under anti-terror legislation for the possession of ‘radical material’ on May 14th. The document in question is widely used for research purposes and was downloaded from an official US government website. At the time of the arrest the document was being used as material for a PhD proposal (supervised by staff in the Department of Politics and International Relations) of a student friend who was also arrested.

In the wake of the arrest the Home Office attempted to deport Hicham: a move that elicited widespread condemnation. Alan Simpson MP said: “The basis of that removal is to try to justify the abuse of power under the Terrorism Act” (see website for text of speech). The deportation order was cancelled in the midst of protests and a concerted campaign for Hicham’s release, but he remained in detention for weeks in various immigration removal centres. The Home Office attempted to justify Hicham’s continued detention by claiming he had an ‘absence of close ties’ to the UK. This was despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, including hundreds of character references from friends and university colleagues, testifying to his excellent character and exceptional contributing to British society over the last 13 years.

Hicham’s arrest highlights the routine and inappropriate use of the terror laws in Britain. Despite the fact that the ‘radical material’ was immediately confirmed as research material by academic supervisors, both Hicham and Riswaan Sabir were held for 6 days. This is a pre-charge detention period that would be illegal in most EU countries.

This development comes in the wake of recent national debate surrounding the extension to 42 days pre-charge detention and at a time when the US Supreme Court reaffirms the writ of habeas corpus in relation terror suspects held in Guantanamo. Yet the UK Government continues to undermine this cornerstone of liberty and accelerates the erosion of fundamental civil liberties.

When asked for comment on his release, Hicham said: “Being detained for the past 31 days has been the most harrowing experience of my life. The support my campaign has received from thousands of friends and supporters – including MPs academics, artists and concerned citizens in Nottingham and beyond – has been nothing short of inspirational and has sustained me through this difficult time. I have spent almost half my life in Nottingham and throughout that time have done my utmost to be a productive and positive member of the student and local communities. I look forward to continuing my fight for justice and I hope sense will prevail.”

Campaign coordinator Musab Younis expressed his delight, commenting: “The incredible success of the campaign is testament to Hicham’s deep roots in the community and unique contribution as a well-known activist, academic, writer, and artist. The campaign will press ahead in its aim to secure Hicham’s right to stay in the UK. We confidently expect a swift and positive resolution to this case, in line with the values of justice and free speech that we expect our country to uphold.”

“We are delighted that Hicham Yezza has been granted immigration bail and has been released,” said David Smith, immigration specialist with Midlands law firm Cartwright King and who is representing Mr Yezza. “The judicial review will now continue and we hope that the case will proceed in an orderly fashion to its proper conclusion.”


Press conferences will be scheduled shortly: see website for updates.

Contact the Campaign:
Phone: 07948590262 / 07505863957 / 07726466211

Breaking News – Bail Hearing, Monday 16 June

Following the last-minute cancellation of Hicham’s removal by the Home Office, initially scheduled for June 1, Hicham is now preparing to fight his case on the outside having spent a whole month in detention, as of this Saturday.

Despite overwhelming evidence testifying to Hicham’s good character and strong links to the Nottingham student and local community, the Home Office has inexplicably and persistently refused to release Hicham while his case is ongoing. A hearing for bail will therefore take place in London on Monday 16 June. We are confident of a successful outcome, which will allow Hicham to be released from detention so he can defend himself properly.

Al Zaytouna Highlight Treatment Of Hich

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