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Published:June 21st, 2009 18:45 EST
Refugee Day March and Rally

Refugee Day March and Rally

By Medyan Dairieh

A march took place as part of Refugee Week. It started at Embankment and headed off past Westminster to Trafalgar Square, where a rally in support of asylum seekers was held.

The march and rally has been organised by Amnesty International together with the Refugee Council, Refugee Action, Hackney Refugee & Migrant Support Group, London Detainee Support Group and others, all calling for an end to the destitution of refused asylum seekers.

Thousands of asylum seekers in the UK who have had their claims to asylum refused find themselves trapped in utter destitution by not being allowed to work in the UK and being cut off from receiving benefits. Very often they can`t go back to their countries of origin for fear of their lives. A report in March last year by the Independent Asylum Commission states that the UK`s treatment of asylum seekers falls seriously below the standards of civilised society ".

Speakers at the rally  included: Kate Allen, director of Amnesty International UK; Jeremy Corbyn MP; Maurice Wren, director of Asylum Aid; Donna Covey, director of the Refugee Council; Jean Roger Kaseki, human rights campaigner from the Democratic Republic of Congo; Marilyn Bonzo, refugee from Zimbabwe; Makola Mayimbika, Poetic Justice; Emma Ginn, Medical Justice; and Weyman Bennett, joint secretary of Unite Against Fascism.