A Life Saved 29

The good news is that Alisher Khakimjanov was granted asylum by a judge yesterday after being refused by the Home Office and scheduled for deportation to Uzbekistan.


One interesting facet of the original Home Office decision was that they explicitly stated that they would not accept evidence from opponents of the Uzbek regime – including me – as it is not “Objective”.


Whereas evidence from the Uzbek regime itself and its supporters is objective, according to the Home Office.

I am involved in another case which has been refused by both Home Office and judge and which is now going to the European Court of Human Rights. In that case the Home Office states that the British Embassy has consulted a Tashkent law firm who say there is no human rights problem in Uzbekistan.

This is the equivalent of “We have taken advice from a Berlin law firm who say that there is no danger to individuals from Herr Hitler and his government”. I am genuinely stupefied by the refusal of the Home Office to accept what the entire world knows is the nature of the Uzbek regime. I actually have sympathy for the argument that many asylum seekers from many countries are economic migrants with weak claims. But the tiny number – less than 50 – of Uzbek asylum seekers who have escaped (Uzbekistan still has exit visas) and made it here, are victims of blind unreasoned Home Office hostility.

The policy is so unreasonable I can only believe it is conditioned by our desire to butter up Karimov to maintain the military alliance with him over Afghanistan. This is yet another terrible shame on this British government, which has betrayed in so many ways the many good people who built up the Labour Party.

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29 thoughts on “A Life Saved

  • arsalan

    It sounds like their assurance policy when they do extrodinary rendition.

    “We sent him to Jordan to have his finger nails pulled out, Syria to have his toenails pulled out and then Morroco to have his willy sliced with a scalpul but it is legal for us to do so because we asked all three governments to tell us they wont do it just before we asked them to do it”

  • Suhayl Saadi

    It is the creeping fascism of the bureaucrat, allied with a deliberately-engineered executive amorality. In Tony Blair’s phrase: “It’s what works that matters”. Of course, it doesn’t actually work, but it’s not being done because it works, it’s being done as part of a systemic Policy of Terrorising people and countries. The War on Terror is really a War of Terror. “Freedom” is bondage(and not in the sense that would make you chuckle). “Democracy” is polyarchy. “Truth” is a lie. Life is death.

  • CalumCarr

    This should beggar belief but it doesn’t.

    Only the result matters. Truth is whatever “they” need it to be and not what it is.

    Bastards!!! Sorry.

  • arsalan

    At least this one isn’t going to be boiled alive(Humanely of course), lets hope we can save the others.

    Because NeoLabour still refuse to agree that boiling people alive is a breach of their human rights.

    The criterion of which they have set to determine whether Karimovs regime breaches human rights actually makes it impossible by definition to prove that Karimovs regime breaches human rights.

    This is because stating that the regime breeches human rights, is an act of opposition which results in an accusation of bias by definition.

    What NeoLabours criterion actually means is the only people who are allowed to testify are those who state the Uzbek Government does not breach human rights.

    It is kind of like the democracy they invade countries to establish, a democracy where the only people allowed to stand are western puppets.

    A Palestinian democracy where people are allowed to vote for who the Americans tell them to vote for.

  • Clark


    thank you for this follow-up; I’m glad of the good news. I wrote to my MP (Simon Burns, Con, Chelmsford) about this, but received no reply.

  • arsalan


    I think that is because all three major parties here support torture in all of its forms. Anything less is unpatriotic.

  • Clark


    these politicians don’t care enough about people to either want or not want them tortured. Craig is right; it is allies for their war that they want, mere people are just the currency of that transaction.

  • John

    Bliar is a prime example of a corporate politician. He hijacked the Labour Party with a “third way” sleight of hand and created one, which suited and served new global capitalism.

    The two chronic and costly wars of Afghanistan and Iraq, are as much about international business, as they are about tactical spheres of influence. The generals might easily be surrogate members of a Board Room.

    It is difficult to believe in any democracy, which invades others’ lands for cheap natural resources under a pretext of spreading democracy and freedom–then filling their pockets with the proceeds of reconstruction.

    These emphases of market and business dimensions, have reduced human beings to mere negative factors which must be removed.

    Nor is legality an impediment, when the gung-ho sloganising of “fighting terrorism” leads the vanguard of these merchant-driven mercenary “crusaders”.

    Does any thinking person believe that, the quality of life and the value of human life, domestically or internationally, has improved in the last thirty-or-so years?

    If there was credible and creditable justice in Britain, the warmongering liar–and I think treasonable Bliar, would be lined up for the ICC at the Haig and not enjoying his fortune, made from corporate blood money and countless corpses.

    Footnote: Anyone who believes waterboarding is other than torture, should be put to the test.

  • dreoilin

    It really pisses me off that the EU won’t take a stand against the US on this stuff. Or on the issue of Israel – regarding which the EU seems to take orders from the US. Seems to me (and correct me if I’m wrong) it’s because the EU considers the UK a major but slightly difficult member — one that has allied itself so closely with the US, that there can never be a (more or less) unified policy from the EU, whether on torture, or Israel, or anything else.

    Baroness Ashton did not meet Hamas while in Gaza – despite the fact that they were the ones blocking off streets to maintain security for her. Such a nonsense that democratically elected people won’t be recognised, and yet Karzai, who got in by internationally-verified fraud is recognised because the US says so. The whole electoral thing was falling around their ears.

    But what’s really confusing to me is what the UK gets out of this “deal” with the US because it seems to me to be very little!?

    BTW, of the seven people arrested here, recently, five have already been released. And I can’t find another word about them in the news.

  • mary

    @ Clark of Chelmsford. Your MP Burns is a member of the Conservative Friends of Israel.

    I remember reading in Murder in Samarkand that Karimov is a good personal friend of Sharon who has been lying in a coma somewhere for several years. The FoI are unlikely to have any sympathy at all for someone who has been persecuted by the Uzbek state.

    His voting record


    Dreoilin and Arsalan are spot on in their analyses.

  • MJ

    “But what’s really confusing to me is what the UK gets out of this “deal” with the US because it seems to me to be very little!?”

    It’s probably useful to see US/UK/Israel as a single entity, the financial and military power-base of the global elite that is driving world affairs.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    “Even praising Israel is political suicide if it isn’t done to a sufficient level. Rabid Zionists have committed career suicide due to slips of tongues where they have hinted empathy how ever small to Israels victims.” Arsalan.

    Actually, even though might sound like Swiftian hyperbole, the frightening and enraging thing is, it’s not.

  • Clark

    Hi Mary.

    Thanks. Yeah, I know what Mr Burns is like. I think he’s sick of hearing from me. I hadn’t checked if he was a member of Friends of Israel, but I thought he probably was. But he’s the only MP I’ve got, you know? I think the boundary change is moving me into Saffron Walden constituency soon.

  • dreoilin

    Well, Scotland nipped our Triple Crown aspirations in the bud, in a well-deserved win at Croke Park. They played brilliantly. I’m off to nurse my stress levels!

  • dreoilin

    Ta sin fior – agus beidh bliain eile romhainn sar i bhfad. Slainte mhor.

    At least rugby fans celebrate afterwards without strife.

  • glenn

    The seven year anniversary of our invasion and occupation of Iraq has just passed (20/3/2003). It’s yesterday’s news to almost everyone here, and most Americans probably wouldn’t even think we’d done anything wrong. A full third of their population believe SH organised the attacks of 11/Sept/01. About 2/3rds of Faux viewers think that.

    There have been around 1.4 million violent deaths, and maybe twice that through deprivation – non-violent deaths which were otherwise avoidable, caused by our invasion. Many millions are now refugees and/or displaced.


    Nobody is to blame for this most unfortunate “mistake”, and we’re supposed to believe this was a simple failure of intelligence, with ministers acting in Good Faith at all times on what they honestly accepted as fact.

    Yet it’s MPs fiddling trifling sums in their expenses that has the country apparently so exercised, for many long months and it’s still on-going. This is what gets politicians put in the dock and Inspector Knacker calling around. This is what gets deselection processes started, and microphones from all media outlets thrust at random citizens, asking for their views on these outrages.

    A few thousand pounds is apparently a lot more serious than a few million dead Iraqis and their shattered country. But the billions spent on that hideous adventure? Nary a word. Except that we should have spent even more “protecting the soldiers” properly.

  • Richard Robinson

    “But the billions spent on that hideous adventure? Nary a word. Except that we should have spent even more “protecting the soldiers” properly”

    Well … we ought to take it very very seriously. It really shouldn’t be as fucking trivial as this. We should remember it isn’t cheap. And if we even have to stop to think about whether we can afford it or not, that’s an automatic “we don’t do it”.

    It *isn’t* cheap and easy. We *do* know this. Within the last handful of generations we’ve seen two “world” wars. How many families in this land don’t know the cost, in terms of people who came back mangled, or didn’t come back ? The length and breadth of this land, there are memorials reminding us that the people being thrown away are us, too.

    Maybe one day we could grow up enough to build memorials to those on the other end of the weapons we bought them, as well. Maybe even before a safe couple of hundred years have passed and someone says a meaningless “sorry”.

  • Duncan McFarlane

    “I actually have sympathy for the argument that many asylum seekers ffrom many countries are economic migrants with weak claims.”

    But why are they so poor that they’re trying to come to the EU or the US or Canada or Australia? In a lot of cases its got a lot to do with our utterly ruthless foriegn and trade policies that prop up dictatorships and demand the complete dismantling of all barriers to our exports to their countries.

    Calling them ‘economic migrants’ is looking at the symptoms but not the causes. As long as there’s a huge gap in wealth and democracy between the ‘developed’ and poorer countries there will be a huge flow of immigrants.

    Plus people who watch their children die due to poverty, hunger and lack of clean water are just as dead as people who’re tortured to death or shot. For many people sending them back as ‘economic migrants’ is just as much death as sending them back to execution or torture.

  • John

    “But the billions spent on that hideous adventure? Nary a word. Except that we should have spent even more “protecting the soldiers” properly”

    The missing factor here is, war is a profitable business for the world elite Marketeers. The taxpayers shell out and lose the quality of their domestic services and society, as the merchants fill their pockets and perpetuate their dynasties.

    Isn’t war the biggest of international business for munitions, pillaged natural resources and reconstruction contracts?

    While this form of aggravated capitalism persists, most western countries are falling under a “South Park” kind of American foreign policy diplomacy–as ever–might is right–only now it is more transparent and audacious.

    While domestically, societies of the main western countries are becoming dysfunctional, under the influences of Americanisation, certain spheres of power and influence are growing in strength and control.

    The great exportation out of the US, of violent(often war)films and lazy sloganising and opaque mixed metaphors, replacing reasoned argument, together with the ubiquitous, bloody “Stars and Stripes” and MacDonalds, are in the main, an assault on civilisation–commonly known as “dumbing down”.

    Back in the 1930’s Aldous Huxley was writing “Brave New World”–this had much in his book, of what we are seeing in society today–yet we seem completely oblivious to our conditioning.

    There appears to be no intellectuals, of the calibre of departed Bertrand Russell, to speak out against the new “first strike”–or pre-emptive war option, pollution of humanity and language–and we, in the lower orders, are all paying a very high price for our virtual enslavement.

  • MJ

    Spot on John.

    Eisenhower’s farewell Presidential address in 1961 said it all:

    “…we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex…Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals so that security and liberty may prosper together”.

    We can’t say we weren’t warned.

    “Defence” spending now accounts for about 20% of the annual US fiscal budget. Paul Craig Roberts recently argued, mischievously, that the hapless US taxpayers – and the rest of the world – would be better off if they just gave all that money to the arms companies and asked for nothing in return.

  • Clark

    “Brave New World” and “1984” – seemingly opposites, but both prophetic. My telescreen watches me as I type, and a click of my mouse will bring me the most pneumaic of entertainment. The endless war proceeds, so that all may be free to shop till they drop.

  • Paul J. Lewis

    Congratulations to Alisher and best wishes. I am ashamed to live in a country that would do what the H.O. is trying to do; use asylum seeker’s lives as political trading cards. At least some parts of our system still work – who was the judge?

    Craig, perhaps you should start a thread of your blog for deportation cases to Uzbekistan? I’ll happily contact my MP for each individual case. I’m sure there must be other here who would do likewise.

  • arsalan

    Israel is the country that can never be touched. Europe and America keep talking about their free speech, but they make no secret of the fact that free speech ends where Israel begins.

    These days, attacks against Prophet Jesus Peace be upon him in countries where people worship him and claim he is God, are seen as harmless humour, while attacks against Prophet Mohummed peace be upon him are seen as acts of enduring courage rewarded with knighthoods. You can say attacks on Prophet Mohummed pbh borders compulsory in some European countries because newspapers that refuse to do it are accused of being under Islamist influence and Newspapers that do but apologise are accused of cowardice. The slogan for this is free speech, a right that ends where Israel begins.

    To say criticising Israel is political suicide is an understatement. Even praising Israel is political suicide if it isn’t done to a sufficient level. Rabid Zionists have committed career suicide due to slips of tongues where they have hinted empathy how ever small to Israels victims.

    The rulers of Europe and America can only say what Israel allows them to say.

    They are able to say anything else, but Israel is where their free speech ends.

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