YVR Security Breach? Deportee Escapes From Police

Thu Jan 23, 2003 1:18 am

Investigations are now under way to see whether if it's a "security breach" after a Iranian deportee escaped from police at Vancouver Airport On Tuesday.

The Iranian Woman and her 21 y/o son and another Iranian man got kicked out of an Air Canada jet when the authority tried to deport them back to Iran. The Iranian Woman and her son was causing disturbance on board, leading to the pilot's decision to kick them off the plane around 1.30PM.

Kobra Natghi, her wrists bound in plastic cuffs, bolted out of the airport after a crowd of about 30 people protesting her deportation swarmed an immigration officer as he escorted her through the airport lobby (US terminal).

Natghi scrambled into a vehicle which then crashed into another vehicle. The occupants fled on foot, and Richmond RCMP believe they were picked up by another protest vehicle.

Natghi, a single mother who fled an abusive marriage in Iran five years ago, was in hiding last night. She lost her refugee claim and she and her son Hassan Esmat, 21, were arrested Friday night.

Members of the International Federation of Iranian Refugees and the Anti-Poverty Committee, who staged the protest, claimed not to know her whereabouts last night.

They were on their way back through the airport when they stumbled on the protesters, who had planned a peaceful demonstration to oppose a recent wave of deportations to Iran, said "Joey," a member of the Anti-Poverty Committee.

"She [Natghi] was seen by the Iranian people who became very visibly upset and got in the way of the guard. And then everyone kind of joined in."

Refugee advocates had been writing letters and calling politicians in hopes of a last-minute reprieve for Natghi.

"This is not going to help her in any way," said Esmail Afshari, who employed Natghi's son. He said he was appalled to learn that after five years in Canada, Natghi and her son were given no opportunity to pack their belongings or settle their affairs.

Poverty activists said they got involved in the case to show their disapproval for deportations to Iran.

"Canada says it is safe to go back to Iran and we've got lots of evidence to prove otherwise," said Joey, who was arrested at the protest, questioned by police and later released.

"What she stands to lose at the hands of the Iranian state compared to what we stand to lose as white activists at the hands of the Canadian state are very, very different."

Iranian refugee advocate Davood Ghavami said there has been a spike in deportations to Iran. Refugee claim-ants, who were once given 30 days' notice before deportation, are now being arrested and jailed with no notice.
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RE: YVR Security Breach? Deportee Escapes From Police

Thu Jan 23, 2003 6:39 am

When someone is on the "ground" side of security, and they run away, it is not a security breach.