Somalis sent back home in fear of al-Shabab


“I live in constant fear. I don’t go anywhere because I face threats from all sides,” says the 39-year-old Somali man who asks me not to use his name.

“I was taken in handcuffs onto a Turkish Airlines plane in London, and flown to Mogadishu via Istanbul. In Istanbul, the British guards accompanying me beat me to the ground, breaking my front tooth.”

The man, who tells me by phone he is now living in a makeshift shelter in a displaced persons’ camp in the Somali capital, was living as an asylum-seeker in the UK until 3 May.

His is the first known case of a Somali being forcibly removed to Mogadishu under what the UK Home Office describes in legal documents related to his case as a new “Somalia test pilot scheme”.

“An old friend of mine gives me rations of oil and rice, and a little money to buy fresh vegetables. That’s all the help I get.”

“Some men came to me, and searched my pockets. They said they knew I had come from the West, and accused me of spying for the Somali government,” he said.

“I am afraid that one day I will be killed.”


Read it at BBC News.