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108 US deportees to Ghana protest 'inhumane' treatment

108 US deportees to Ghana protest 'inhumane' treatment

Ghana

There was a brief protest at Ghana’s airport in the capital Accra when a plane carrying 108 Ghanaian and Liberian deportees from the United States landed on Wednesday.

The deportees refused to disembark from the plane in protest of alleged inhumane treatment including shackling before and during the journey.

“We were handcuffed by the US authorities before we boarded the plane and even though we pleaded with them to remove the restraining devices while we were on board, they refused. Strangely, when the plane landed, they freed our hands and legs and asked us to disembark. That is why we said we would not get down unless they allowed us to get down with the handcuffs for everybody to see how they had treated us,” one of the deportees told Ghanaian newspaper Daily Graphic.

We were handcuffed by the US authorities before we boarded the plane and even though we pleaded with them to remove the restraining devices while we were on board, they refused. Strangely, when the plane landed, they freed our hands and legs and asked us to disembark.

The 108 individuals were reported to have been deported for reasons including drug-related offences, staying illegally, over staying their permits and other crimes.

It took the intervention of Ghanaian security and immigration officials to convince them to disembark after over an hour, the paper reported.

“When they finally stepped out of the plane, some of them, suspected to be hardened criminals, were seen in handcuffs, while others carried their heavy jackets,” it added.

The deportees also requested support from Ghanaian officials to return home after paperwork, but they were not granted.

About 20 deportees also landed in Liberia’s capital, Monrovia on Wednesday.

Liberia’s ambassador to the US, Jeremiah Solunteh, disclosed that 53 of those to be deported have already been processed and are awaiting deportation.

President Obama’s administration has been pushing for immigration reform but at the moment, a record 2 million deportations have been executed.

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