No One Is Illegal | 30.09.2003 08:11 | Migration
We call on all good people to try and right the wrong of their imprisionment and to do what they can to help these men stay free.
Twenty men scaled a fence at Lindholme Removal Centre, at Lindholme Prison near Doncaster, at about 2020 BST on Sunday.
South Yorkshire Police recaptured 10 men on Monday - four from Sri Lanka and one each from Pakistan, Cameroon, Turkey, Sierra Leone, India and Macedonia. They were all caught within a six-mile radius of the prison.
The search, by more than 40 police officers, dog teams and a helicopter, was suspended overnight because of a large area of moorland nearby.
Superintendent Dave Featherstone said calls from the public had led police to ten detainees who were recaptured.
He said: "I would hope that if we get the continued co-operation of the public we will get all 20 back within the next couple of days."
A police spokesman said: "The advice to members of the public who encounter the asylum seekers is not to approach them and not to stop your car if flagged down by them, even though they are not considered dangerous."
The detainees have not been convicted of any crimes. Our advice to anyone with a shred of humanity is to give them shelter and aid.
The Chief Inspector of Prisons Anne Owers recently criticised Lindholme in a report into asylum detention, saying it needed "fundamental and far-reaching changes".
Ms Owers said detainees were not shown enough respect and were subjected to "unacceptable and unnecessary" random strip searches after visits.
She said asylum seekers interviewed by inspectors neither felt safe nor knew what was happening to them.
Asylum seekers are held at Lindholme under rules which allow immigration authorities to detain them at any stage of their process.
They can be detained without having been charged or convicted of a criminal offence.
The Home Office says it uses detention against those it claims are at risk of absconding after their cases have been rejected - but campaigners say it criminalises vulnerable people and prevents them from having a fair hearing.
No One Is Illegal