Show support for Hassan

I would like to thank the hundreds of people who joined the NUJ
Manchester branch on Saturday to protest in support of our friend and
colleague Mansoor Hassan.

Mansoor is a Pakistani journalist who
in his homeland exposed honour killings, corruption and police links to
the drugs trade. As a result Mansoor’s parents’ home was burned down,
he and his family were threatened and armed men attempted to kidnap him.

The family fled to the UK and have settled in Manchester, where Mansoor’s four children are doing exceptionally well at school.

and his wife, a teacher, are denied the right to earn a living by
Government legislation – but they do voluntary work. Mansoor was even
elected a school governor.

Despite their exemplary role in the
community, and the fact that Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch
and the International Federation of Journalists have confirmed that
journalists in Pakistan face real danger, the Government wants to
deport Mansoor. The result of the election is unlikely to change things.

hope journalists will protest about this case to their current and new
MPs. And that people writing stories about asylum and immigration in
the next few weeks will think about Mansoor and his children before
publishing anything that makes their situation worse.

If anyone
wants to talk to the family, or to Mansoor as an expert on the
increasingly newsworthy subject of honour killings, I can put them in

Miles Barter, NUJ northern regional organiser

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