Lufthansa-owned British Midland International (BMI) plans charter deportation to Afghanistan

Sunday 13 June 2010

According to information received in the last few days, Nottinghamshire-based British Midland International (BMI), owned since last year by the German airline Lufthansa, is planning a deportation charter flight to Kabul, Afghanistan, this Tuesday 15th June.

In the last few months BMI have taken part in deportations to Sudan, Ethiopia and Iran.

London NoBorders calls on BMI to stop taking part in the forced deportations of refugees and other migrants. The airline is responsible for carrying migrants who are being deported from the UK against their will by the British Government.

BMI employees have previously stated that BMI cannot refuse to transport deportees and the decision is out of their control. However, other airlines have refused to fly deportees in the past, including XL Airways who announced in 2007 that they would no longer carry refused asylum-seekers who were being forcibly removed from the UK.[2]

BMI must be made aware of the impact of their actions on the lives of the people they deport and how their image and business will be affected if they continue this practice.

Lufthansa, who have owned BMI since 2008[3], has been involved in forced deportations for decades and has been widely critised by activists and human rights groups for their deportation policies, which caused the death of a deportee onboard a Lufhansa flight in 1999. The widespread criticism has led the German pilot association
cockpit to recommend pilots should refuse the transport of passengers "unwilling to travel".

London NoBorders

[1] see: