November 11, 2015
News, Announcements, and Analysis from ACAS
David Love’s article, “Deportation of African and Other Black Immigrants Is Quietly Increasing And No One Is Taking Note” (Altanta Black Star March 20, 2017) investigates a topic ACAS is following closely. Immigrants living in the US are increasingly insecure and worried about real dangers presented by the new strategies used under the Trump administration to harass, detain, and deport immigrants.
As Love writes: “Since the 2016 election, the ICE raids on Black immigrant communities have intensified. For example, in January, 86 men and women were deported to Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia, after being detained and imprisoned, as Africanews.com reported. In November, 108 immigrants were deported to Ghana and 20 people also were deported to Liberia, while 53 others were processed for deportation. Earlier this month, ICE deported 130 people to Senegal, six times the number recorded by the agency in its 2016 report.”
The Association of Concerned Africa Scholars (ACAS) registers its outrage and its opposition to the Presidential Executive Order, “Protecting The Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into The United States,” issued by Donald Trump on January 27, 2017, which has cut off legal immigration and travel to the United States from three African nations: Sudan, Somalia and Libya as well as from Iran, Iraq, Syria and Yemen. This ban directly affects refugees from Somalia, Libya, Iraq, and Syria where the U.S. military actions contribute to the exodus of thousands of refugees. Ironically, this ban is directed toward refugees in a continent whose nations have opened their borders to refugees and people fleeing violence while the U.S. is closing boundaries and building walls.
This ban is an ill-advised, religiously-based attack on the rights of people from these majority Muslim nations. This unwise action will not make the U.S. safe, is in opposition to American values, and will fuel anti-American sentiment in Africa and around the world. This scatter-shot action is a threat to all refugees, to the global system of protection for refugees and other displaced people, and to the future of human rights and of U.S. democracy. In addition, this EO violates the Geneva Convention on Refugees which obliges all member states to take in those fleeing war.
In stating that he plans to favor Christian refugees, the President makes clear that this is a religion-based discrimination. Such discrimination has been condemned by many leaders of U.S. Protestant, Catholic, and Evangelical churches. It also violates the ban on government establishment of religion in the first amendment of the US Constitution as well as U.S. law that bars discrimination “in the issuance of an immigrant visa because of the person’s race, sex, nationality, place of birth or place of residence.” (8 U.S. Code § 1152).
This EO violates the most basic of humanitarian norms at the core of our democracy and puts severe burdens on families in Africa, the other affected countries, and the United States. It will have a severe impact on students and scholars who have or would have sought to have, ties and links with US institutions of higher education.
With many other organizations in the United States and around the world, we therefore call for the immediate rescinding of this executive order and a new U.S. policy to accept more of those fleeing the conflicts around the world.
ACAS January 31 2017
ACAS Executive expresses its concern at the Zanzibar election annulment, and agrees with the sentiments of a group of scholars of Zanzibar as below. (see link to full statement and initial signatories)
ZANZIBAR SCHOLARS’ STATEMENT OF CONCERN
Urgent Action Alert: Mozambique: Drop All Charges Against Carlos Nuno Castel-Branco and Fernando Mbanze (UA 162/15… http://ow.ly/31FXA3
Urgent Action July 21, 2015
Economist Carlos Nuno Castel-Branco and newspaper editor Fernando Mbanze have been charged with crimes against the security of the state in relation to a Facebook post on poor governance in Mozambique. Their trial begins on 3 August.
1) Please write immediately in English, Portuguese or your own language:
PLEASE SEND APPEALS BEFORE 1 SEPTEMBER 2015 TO:
PETITION FOR THE RELEASE OF POLITICAL PRISONERS
As members of the North Eastern Workshop on Southern Africa (NEWSA) and scholars of African Studies, we are deeply distressed by ongoing injustices in Swaziland. These include the current crisis engulfing the Swazi judiciary, the conditions of political prisoners such as PUDEMO President Mario Masuku, Human Rights Lawyer Thulani Maseko, SWAYOCO Secretary General Maxwell Dlamini, Nation Magazine Editor Bheki Makhubu, MK and ANC cadre Amos Mbedzi and PUDEMO stalwart Zonke Dlamini, as well as the intensified persecution of political and civil society activists and trade unions. We express particular concern about the worsening health conditions of PUDEMO President Mario Masuku, who was recently hospitalized in relation to his poor prison conditions. Masuku’s alleged crime is calling for that which is already enjoyed in many parts of the world: the right for the people to elect a government of their choosing in a free and democratic environment.
We call for the release of all political prisoners in Swaziland and express our support for several movements campaigning for democracy in Swaziland, including the People’s United Democratic Movement, the Swaziland Youth Congress, the Trade Union Congress of Swaziland, South Africa Lawyers for Human Rights, Southern Africa Litigation Centre’s, and the Congress of South African Trade Union’s Global Coalition for the Release of Swazi Political and Civil Rights Prisoners.
May 19, 2015