Category Archives: Press Release

Press releases issued by the campaign.

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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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.”

[ENDS]

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

Contact the Campaign:
Phone: 07948590262 / 07505863957 / 07726466211
Email: staffandstudents@googlemail.com
Website: https://freehichamyezza.wordpress.com

Al Zaytouna Highlight Treatment Of Hich

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Press Release – Hicham Refuses To Be Transported To Fifth Detention Centre (31/05/08)

Following the cancellation order on his deportation and despite being unjustly incarcerated for over two weeks, Hicham Yezza has received news that he is to be transported to a fifth detention centre. He released this statement today from Colnbrook immigration removal centre:

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A Message from Hich (30/05/08)

Hich says: “To all my supporters and comrades: I have been overwhelmed by the show of support and solidarity that I have received via dozens of faxes, postcards and letters from all over the country and beyond. I would like everyone to know that I am receiving your messages, even if I’m unable to respond. I truly hope that I will be given the chance to thank every one of you when I am released.

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Press Release – Removal Directions Cancelled (30/05/08)

30/05/08

At 12.30 hours today, an application to the High Court in London was issued seeking a judicial review of the decisions of the Home Office in this matter.

The removal directions set for Sunday 1st June have now been cancelled by the Home Office, and an application will be made to them this afternoon for Mr Yezza to be released while his case is reconsidered.

David Smith, of Cartwright King solicitors in Nottingham, says “We hope and trust that the Home Office will now release Mr Yezza and reconsider his case properly and in accordance with the law; we will proceed vigorously with the High Court action unless they agree to do so.”

Press release 29/05/08

Report from the demonstration against the deportation of Hicham Yezza and for the protection of academic freedom
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