Derwentside protesters given fixed penalty notices outside controversial immigration centre

People from a number of groups including Say No To Hassockfield Campaign were in attendance Credit: Say No to Hassockfield Campaign

A number of protesters have been handed fixed penalty notices (FPN) following a demonstration outside a controversial immigration centre in County Durham.

Five people were given the FPNs by Durham Police at Derwentside Detention Centre on Wednesday (29 June).

They were opposing the removal of women from the female-only detention centre being sent to Nigeria.

A number of groups including members from the Say No To Hassockfield Campaign gathered as part of the protests.

In one video the group posted on social media they could be heard chanting "Say it loud, say it clear, refugees are welcome here."

It comes as the Home Office has struck a new deal with Nigeria to tackle migration issues.

On Thursday (30 June) 13 Nigerian foreign nationals were removed on a chartered flight.

It has not been confirmed how many of them were from the Derwentside site.

A spokesperson for the Home Office Said: “The public rightly expects the government to remove dangerous foreign criminals and those with no right to be in the UK.

“All asylum and human rights claims are carefully considered in accordance with our international obligations.

“Individuals at Derwentside have always been able to contact their legal representatives easily by telephone, email and video call – and also receive 30 minutes free advice through the legal aid scheme. Meetings in-person are also now able to take place on request.”

Derwentside Immigration Centre was opened during the pandemic on the site of the former Medomsley detention centre for young offenders. It has replaced Yarl's Wood as the sole women's-only detention centre in the UK.

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