Child M tells his story to Channel Four Dispatches - TRAILER HERE

Monday 29th November
You can help Child M and his family

Child M and his family remain at risk of imminent deportation to Iran. The family are under unbearable pressure. They have been supported by thousands of people over the past three years but it hasn't been enough. This family deserve the right to stay with safety and dignity in the UK.

Please do the following to help them:

  • Contact your own MP. Tell them that you are concerned about this family and want them to represent you and your concerns to Damian Green, Immigration Minister.
  • Ask your MP to contact their party leader to express your concerns and to raise questions in the House of Commons. 
  • Contact Damian Green directly on 0207 035 3986, 01233 820 454, 0207 219 3518 or 0207 219 3911. Fax on 01233 820 111, 0208 760 3132 or 0207 219 0904. Email on

Child M tells his story to Channel Four Dispatches - TRAILER HERE

Channel 4 Dispatches: The Kids Britain Doesn't Want

Monday 29 th November 8pm

Child M and his family still face the danger of their imminent deportation to Iran. Please do all you can to help them.

Please contact your local MP and ask them to write to Damian Green, MP, Immigration Minister. We are gaining significant support from Members of Parliament.

Copy all letters to Theresa May MP, Home Secretary, David Cameron MP, Prime Minister, Nick Clegg Deputy Prime Minister

Please use the following information;

Ref: G1158044, G1158044/2 and G1158044/7

  • Child M and his family still face immediate deportation to Iran. We are certain they will face arrest, imprisonment, torture and possibly death if they are forced to return. As a result we do not know what would happen to Child M.
  • In the early stages of their asylum claim, we believe the family did not receive effective or adequate legal representation as a result of this it has been hard to prove the validity of their asylum claim
  • They have authenticated evidence that supports their claim
  • Throughout this process the family, including Child M, have been subjected to extensive periods of detention in Yarls Wood Immigration Removal Centre. On 15 th July 2008, the family was detained for 52 days in Yarls Wood. During this time both sons, including the then eight year old Child M was subjected to several full body searches. As a result of their detention, the family experienced extreme stress and anxiety. They were detained for a further 3 weeks in November 2009.
  • This family have suffered enormous stress and we are very concerned about their mental and physical health.
  • Farah and her family have settled well into their community in Manchester and we desperately want them to remain safely in the UK.

25th September 2010
Manchester leaders bid to stop Iran family deportation

Political leaders in Manchester have written to the immigration minister in a bid to halt the deportation of a 10-year-old boy to Iran.

The boy, known as Child M, faces removal along with his family after losing a bid for a judicial review.

Read the full story on the BBC here

The fight to save the family continues.

22nd September 2010
Child M and family lose final legal appeal.

The situation is now desperate. We may have only 72 hours to save the family and prevent their deportation to Iran .

Child M and his family have thousands of supporters. Their plight has received wide spread media coverage.

What next?

The legal process has ended. The Home Secretary and Immigration Minister can still halt their deportation and give the family the right to remain in the UK .

The only chance for this family now is that the Home Secretary and Immigration Minister agree to discuss the case with the family's constituency MP, Sir Gerald Kaufman.

We ask all supporters of Child M and his family and those sympathetic to their case to do two things;

Urgently contact Damian Green and Teresa May and state that the family cannot be safely returned to Iran . They face certain imprisonment and worse.

Contact your own MP and Councilors and ask them to do the same and to contact Sir Gerald Kaufman to offer their support.

It’s not over yet. Together we can still save this family. Please do all you can.

Reminder: Child M Court Hearing Wednesday 22nd September

Tuesday 21st September

Let's have a massive show of support for Child M and family tomorrow:

1.45pm High Court Manchester
5pm outside Manchester Town Hall

If you can't make it: text messages of support to 07733 116 126 between 5.15 and 6.30pm

email messages of support to the Child M Campaign c/o

join the campaign on Twitter and Facebook and circulate widely

on behalf of the Child M Campaign

Child M Update - Urgent

Saturday 18th September 2010

The situation for Child M and his family remains very serious this weekend.

There is a hearing on Wednesday 22nd September at 2pm at the High Court in Manchester. A final decision will be taken as to whether or not Mehrshad's rights as a child have been properly considered in their asylum case.

Mehrshad is now 10. He has:

  • spent 10 weeks in detention in the UK
  • been subjected to full body searches at Heathrow
  • been held in a van for several hours with no member of his family present while his mum received hospital treatment
  • suffered physically and psycologically at the hands of the UK government
  • lived with fear and uncertainty about his future and that of his family

Enough is enough. He is a little boy.

As a campaign our demand is simple. Whatever the outcome in court on Wednesday:

Child M and his family must be given the right to stay in the UK.

Child M needs your support

We have a 2 things to ask you to do:

1. If you can come to the court on Wednesday, please do so. It is a public hearing and it is vital we show the significant level of support the family have in their community.

Please meet at 1.45pm outside:
Manchester High Court of Justice
Manchester Civil Justice Centre
1 Bridge Street West
M60 9DJ

2. We also call on friends and supporters to join us for a 'Gathering of Friends' outside Manchester Town Hall (St Peter's Square side) from 5pm on Wednesday.

We need as many people there as possible. Please come. It may be our last chance to show solidarity with Child M and his family. We urge you to come.

Child M and his family must be allowed to remain safely here in the UK.

Please join us in Manchester on Wednesday at 1.45pm and/or 5pm. Public support for Child M and his family is vital at this stage of the campaign.

Without your support we will not win.

on behalf of the Child M Campaign

Deportation Halted. For Now!

14th September
Teachers' unions says No to deportation in letter to Damien Green

On behalf of the National Union of Teachers, I am writing to you to express our concern over the intended deportation of Child M and his family.

Child M is an active member of his school and his deportation will be detrimental not just to him, but also to the many friends he would leave behind. Should Child M be forced to leave, many of his classmates would find his departure very upsetting which would in turn leave them unsettled.

Following his time at the detention centre, Child M has been in a lot of stress and anxiety. In addition, if he and his family were to be deported, their quality of life would greatly deteriorate. Their deportation to Iran would put them in severe danger. Child M and his family cannot return to Iran safely. Farah and her daughter Mahroo stand accused of copying and distributing copies of Salman Rushdie's book 'The Satanic Verses'. The Iranian authorities have already issued arrest warrants for both Farah and Mahroo

The NUT has a long history of working to secure human rights for students and teachers worldwide. The case of Child M and his family requires urgent consideration especially as it involves a school aged child whose education would be disrupted, if not ended by the forced return to Iran.

With these concerns in mind, we strongly believe that the best decision is to keep the family here in England and ask you to consider granting them leave to remain for their benefit, the benefit of the school which they attend and, for wider efforts towards integration and community cohesion.

I hereby urge you to give favorable consideration to this request and to reconsider the deportation of Child M and his family and to grant them indefinite leave to remain in the UK.

Yours sincerely

General Secretary, NUT

14th september
Ashley calls for Child M and Ghaemi family deportation to be halted.

Manchester Lib Dem Leader and Gorton Councillor Simon Ashley has called on immigration minister Damien Green to halt the deportation of Child M and the Ghaemi family to Iran ahead of a Judical review next Wednesday (22nd Sept).
Cllr Ashley said today,

"I have written to Damien Green MP today, and asked him to explain how the state can allow people to be deported back to Iran, when every day we see the Iranian state violating the human rights of its citizens? "

Cllr Ashley added,
"The Ghaemi family are well regarded in Gorton, and I urge everyone in Gorton and across Manchester to lobby Damien Green to get him to look at this case again."

13th September 2010
Gerrald Kaufmann MP calls deportantion "intolerable"

An Iranian woman accused by the Tehran regime of circulating copies of Salman Rushdie's The Satanic Verses is at risk of being stoned and flogged if her forced removal from the UK takes place as planned tomorrow, her MP has said.

Gerald Kaufman, Labour MP for Gorton, where a campaign to prevent the family's removal is based, described as "intolerable" the decision to remove Farah Ghaemi, 45, her son Ahmed, 20 and her 10-year-old son known as Child M.


13th September 2010
Child M deportation halted. For Now.

Child M and his family, friends and supporters were relieved to hear tonight that a judge at the High Court in Manchester has agreed to consider a Judicial Review application submitted by Child M's legal team. The Judicial Review, to be held at the High Court on Wednesday 22nd September, means that the legal process continues and the family will not be deported tomorrow. The legal team have done a fantastic job and we all hope for the very best outcome. At the same time we are waiting a decision from the European Court of Human Rights tomorrow morning.

The fight to keep Child M and his whole family in the UK continues. We remain deeply concerned about the dangers that the family face if they are forced to return to Iran. They cannot be returned to Iran against their will. As the news came through that they will not be deported tomorrow, Farah cried with relief.

Against all odds, as a campaign, we have succeeded again in preventing the deportation of the family. What now?

Keep up the political pressure. Every single call to ministers, MP's, Trades Unions, councillors and the press has an impact. We need to keep demanding the family are not forcibly returned to Iran and are given the right to permanently remain in the UK. We have been in the situation of a temporary reprieve before. Enough is enough for this family. Until we win, nothing is certain and the family remain in danger. Damian Green has made the wrong decision. We need to tell him.

I can't thank you all enough for everthing you've done so far. Please don't stop now.

We will be calling a gathering of friends to show solidarity with the family in Manchester City Centre very soon. Keep watching this space.

on behalf of the Child M Campaign


11th Seprtember 2010 - 9.00pm

Tonight the situation for child m and his family remains critical. PLEASE DO ALL YOU CAN TO HELP!!

Please consider doing the following:

Meet the family and members of the campaign and their supporters on the steps at the front of the Friends Meeting House (at the back of central library) tomorrow (12.9.10) at 11.30am.

We will be leafleting the demonstration marking the start of the TUC conference, to raise the profile of the family's plight.We are expecting a BBC camera crew and a MASSIVE SHOW OF SUPPORT FOR THE FAMILY WOULD BE INVALUABLE

Contact Damian Green MP, Immigration Minister and Teresa May MP, Home Secretary to ask that the family be given the right to remain in the UK. THEY MUST NOT BE DEPORTED TO IRAN - THEY WILL NOT BE SAFE.


020 703 53986
01233 820 454
020 721 93518
020 721 93911


01233 820 111 020 8760 3132
020 7219 0904  



020 72195206

0118 9345433
01628 604961  


0118 934 5288 020 7219 5206


The family are booked on flight Iran Air IR710 5.00pm. Contact UNITE UNION to ask their members to refuse to let the plane take off.

020 7420 8900

020 7611 2500


020 874 55791

0844 335 1801


11th September 2010 - 9.00am

Yesterday evening the Immigration Minister, Damian Green MP, refused to reconsider the decision to deport Farah Ghaemi and her children to Iran.

Gerald Kaufman, MP for Gorton, made representations on behelf of the family last week. In the Commons on Monday he asked:

"Will the Minister put an immediate stop to the UK Border Agency's plan to ship the Ghaemi family-mother, daughter and young son-from my constituency to Iran a week tomorrow? The two women will undoubtedly be exposed to the possibility of being flogged, tortured, imprisoned or stoned. Is it not intolerable that UKBA should plan to do that, and does the Minister want that on his conscience?"

Damian Green has decided that Removal Directions, set for this Tuesday, will be enforced.

Gerald Kaufman has said that the political process has now ended and there is nothing else he can do. The legal team are making last ditch efforts to prevent the deportation, but the situation is becoming increasingly serious and the family are desperate.

The family now expect to be removed from Gorton, Manchester on Monday 13th or Tuesday 14th September.

Child M and his family cannot return to Iran safely. Farah and her daughter Mahroo stand accused of copying and distributing copies of Salman Rushdie's book 'The Satanic Verses'. The Iranian authorities have already issued arrest warrants for both Farah and Mahroo.

The family and members of the Child M Campaign will be at the Manchester Against Deportations meeting at the Friends Meeting House at 2pm this afternoon (Saturday 11th September).

Please join us there if you can.

The situation is now critical. Please be prepared to do anything you can to help. We will send an update later today and regularly over the next 72 hours. Please send your mobile number if we don't already have it and you want to be included in text updates.


6th September 2010

Child M and his family once again face the danger of imminent deportation to Iran.

In August Child M’s mother attended an interview in which she was asked to voluntarily return to Iran otherwise she would be forcibly removed. She refused and was informed that she would be issued with removal orders within 2 weeks.

Immigration officials attempted to deliver papers, ordering their imminent deportation, to the family at their home in Manchester. At the time a documentary TV crew were at the house as Child M is to be featured in a programme for Channel 4’s dispatches series. The incident was reported in an article in the Manchester Evening News.

Last week, the family’s solicitor received a message that the family are to be deported to Iran on September 14th.

It seems this family are being included in the Coalition Governments’ trial of chartering flights to return asylum seekers with children to their countries of origin as quickly as possible (see article in The Guardian).

We are all very concerned. It is clear to anyone familiar with this case that the family will not be safe in Iran. All attempts to gain asylum in the UK have been unsuccessful despite expert witness statements which authenticate the arrest warrant for Child M’s mother and sister.

What can you do now?

If you live in the Gorton constituency in Manchester, contact Gerald Kaufman MP on 0161 652 6326. After requests from constituents, he has represented Child M’s family on a number of occasions. Today, (6.9.10), he raised their case with the Home Secretary in the House of Commons.

Contact Immigration Minister Damian Green MP on 020 7035 3986. Ask him to honour the decision taken by the previous Immigration Minister, Phil Woolas MP, to undertake a full review of the case. Ask for a response to the 5000 signature petition sent to the Home Office asking for this family to be given the right to stay. Ask that this family be allowed to stay in the UK.

On previous occasions the Child M Campaign and our supporters have worked together to prevent this family from being deported. Sadly, the family is now in grave danger again. Please do all you can to help them.

1st May 2010

Mahroo Sadeghi returned home

Yesterday evening Mahroo Sadeghi returned home to Manchester.

On Wednesday morning Mahroo Sadeghi (Child M's elder sister) was detained at their family home, taken to Longsight police station, moved to Manchester airport and subsequently taken to Yarls Wood Immigration Removal Centre.

On Friday afternoon she was served with removal orders. Mahroo's deportation to Iran was scheduled for next Wednesday.

Within hours of her detention, Gerald Kaufman (MP for Gorton South), Phil Woolas (Immigration Minister) and the UKBA were deluged with hundreds of phone calls from supporters of the Child M Campaign.

Yesterday afternoon Mahroo was released.

A massive THANK YOU to all Child M Campaign supporters.

To everyone who acted, you made the difference.

With heartfelt thanks for all your help,

Emma Shaw on behalf of
Child M Campaign

22nd December 2009

Outrageous treatment of a child

Since Child M’s release from detention on 8th December 2009, the Child M Campaign has learnt that Child M was held for a period of 8 hours on his own by detaining officers on the day of the family’s detention.

This outrageous situation arose when Child M’s mother collapsed at the family home as they were being detained. When detaining officers were unable to stabilise her condition themselves, they called for an ambulance. Child M’s mother was then taken to hospital in Manchester along with Child M’s elder brother to act as an interpreter.

Child M was left on his own with detaining officers. After remaining at home for a short while, he was taken to the hospital in a vehicle. He was held in the vehicle outside the hospital for a period of several hours.

During the time he spent alone with the deteining officers, Child M was questionned about his sisters’ whereabouts.

It is unjustifiable to hold a child, alone, with no adult whose job it is to represent his interests. The fact that he was held for such a long period in a vehicle beggars belief. Our understaning is that it is also illegal to question a child without a responsible adult with them.

REPORT in the Guardian here

8th December 2009
They are out!

Dear all,

Child M and his family have been released from detention tonight after 3 weeks in Yarls Wood. No reason has been given. They are on their way home to Manchester.

A massive thank you to everyone who's helped in the past few weeks from all of us involved in the Child M campaign.

This is a great result. The campaign for their right to remain in the UK continues.

We'll update the website as soon as more details become available.

With very best wishes,
on behalf of Child M Campaign

4th December 2009
Child M campaign meets Phil Woolas

Representatives from the Child M Campaign met with Phil Woolas tonight, Friday 4th December 2009, at his constituency office in Oldham.

Teachers from Child M’s school, neighbours, friends and school friends held a candlelit vigil outside and were invited in to speak to Mr Woolas.

Mr Woolas was handed an open letter asking for Child M and his family to be released and given leave to remain in the UK signed by, amongst others, Baroness Haleh Afshar, Michael Rosen and Professor Ted Cantle OBE.

Teachers from Child M’s school expressed their deep concerns about the effect of continued detention on Child M’s mental health and well being.

Mr Woolas was also handed a poster made and signed by Child M’s friends at school asking for their friend to be allowed to come home.

Phil Woolas was asked to intervene immediately to release Child M and his family from detention and to secure their right to remain in the UK.

Mr Woolas agreed to:
· “request the family’
s file and have a look at it”
· speak again with Sir Gerald Kaufman (the MP for Gorton North who intervened to prevent their deportation)
· to consider the request to release the family.

Child M’s family’s fresh evidence was yesterday rejected by the UK Border Agency.

Representatives from the Child M Campaign asked for his personal guarantee that the family would not be removed immediately. The campaign were given assurances that the deportation of the family is not imminent.

The campaign looks forward to a swift response from Mr Woolas in the early part of next week.

We remain deeply concerned for the welfare of Child M and his family and look forward to welcoming them back to Manchester.

Ist December 2009

We continue to be extremely concerned for the welfare of Child M whilst he is being detained. He is showing concerning signs of deterioration in his mental health.

Child M is a 9 year old boy. He and his family are facing deportation to Iran where they face certain persecution. They are currently being held in Yarls Wood Immigration Removal Centre, where they spent 52 days in the summer of 2008.

Thank you very much to those people who have already responded to our email. We value everyone’s support and really appreciate your interest.

Here is a letter that we're sending to the press demanding Child M's immediate release. The first people to sign are Michael Rosen and Baronness Haleh Afshar. We need to get as many people to sign as possible to ensure the safety of Child M and his family.

If you have not managed to contact us so far please email us a response in support of the attached letter which we will then forward to the HHome Secretary. Please email us yes by Thursday at 6.00

If there is any other way you could help please contact us.

Please find legal statement and background document we've been sending out from the Child M campaign this week. The documents give some background that people will find helpful.

All the evidence available to us at the moment suggests that imprisonment at Yarls Wood is having a very damaging effect on Child M and his family. We need to act to get him and his family released immediately.
Many Thanks

Child M Campaign

21st November 2009
Deportation halted
- the campaign continues
We were advised just before the flight deadline last night that the family of Child M has been returned to Yarl's Wood and the deportation abandoned for the time being. We are continuing to press for the full release as a nine year old child is being locked up in a detention centre, which is utterly inhumane.

BMI was deluged with calls and there was widespread lobbying of Gerald Kaufman that we want to continue. People can also contact the Home Secretary, Alan Johnson, to make their views on bundling children on to planes quite clear. We also contacted the national and local press and received considerable interest in a very short time. This helped to focus the minds of the Home Office and BMI.

Thank you to yourself and everyone who has acted on Child M's behalf.

We will need to do so again.

17th November 2009

Child M and his family were detained at their home on Tuesday morning by immigration officers. They have been taken to Yarls Wood Immigration Removal Centre. They are due to be deported to Iran on Friday 20th November (I think the flight is Heathrow to Tehran, dept time 18.30).

Their lawyers submitted a new asylum claim yesterday and should hear this morning whether it's been accepted by the Home Office as a fresh claim. The are fairly confident it will be as the arrest warrant for Child M's mum has been authenticated by an expert witness. Should they not be successful, their barrister will seek an injunction from a high court judge halting their removal.

Gerald Kaufman - the family's MP, agreed to speak to the Home Secretary about their situation. I have just heard from his parliamentary office that he's done this and is following it up today.

It seems likely The Guardian will run the story in Friday's paper.

The family's home office reference number is G1158044.

Any other ideas?
Details of contacts / workers / airline staff at Heathrow who we could contact if none of the above works?

Child M Campaign

Who is Child M?

Child "M" (who can’t be named for legal reasons) is aged 8. He is here in the UK with his mum, brother and sister. They face persecution if they are returned to Iran - they are accused of circulating Salman Rushdie's book ‘The Satanic Verses’.

The British government has refused their asylum claim and tried to deport them - most recently locking-up the whole family in a detention centre - for 51 days! They have just been released and allowed to return to Manchester.

There have been recent reports in the press highlighting the harmful effects of detention on children. Detention can, “significantly impair a child’s mental and physical health,” (BID Report into the Detention of Children, March 2008). The Children’s Commissioner called it, “an inhuman process,” (Children’s Commissioner, September 08). Home Office guidance says that children should not be detained in this way.

The family is making challenges in the High Court - but it is not enough to put their faith in the law. So they have started a campaign - "Child "M" Must Stay!". Download a leaflet here.

Child “M” and his family must not be removed from Britain and returned to Iran. It will be too dangerous for them.


Video: Manchester Crown Court: 22nd Sepetember 2010

Gerald Kaufman MP on Woman’s Hour, Radio 4
Friday 17th September CLICK HERE


13th September 2010
Interveiw with Child M's family - Manchester Evening News

An Iranian family who say they could be tortured for having a copy of The Satanic Verses have won a last-minute reprieve against deportation.

Farah Ghaemi and her sons, Mehrshad, 10, and Ahmad, 18, were due to fly back to Iran from Manchester Airport at 5pm yesterday. But campaigners won an injunction from a High Court judge preventing their return.

The case will now go to a judicial review. It is the third time the UK Border Agency has attempted to remove the family since their arrival in 2007 when they settled in Gorton.

Mehrshad, was known as Child M until a court order which prevented him from being named expired.

Campaigner Denise McDowell, a friend of the family, claimed they could be flogged, tortured, imprisoned or stoned for possessing the book if they returned to Iran.

Speaking after the injunction was granted, she said: "You cannot just remove a 10-year-old child and his family without finding out the impact for them and what’s in their best interest.

"We are absolutely over the moon, but it’s still not the end. We still have more to do and the support cannot stop now."
On Monday, the M.E.N. reported the family faced the threat of being deported.

Widow Mrs Ghaemi, 49, said: "I am ill physically and emotionally. I can’t eat properly and I’m not sleeping.
"My youngest son is very nervous and he is not talking to us. He is so worried. We can’t go back."

The family’s MP, Sir Gerald Kaufman, has made numerous representations on their behalf. Last Monday, in the House of Commons, he asked the home secretary to look into the case. He also wrote to immigration minister Damian Green asking that the family be allowed to stay permanently – but it was rejected.

Authorities in Iran claimed to have found Salman Rushdie’s novel in Mrs Ghaemi’s house. The novel caused outrage among fundamentalist Muslims when it was published in 1988.
The religious ruler of Iran at the time, Ayatollah Khomeini, triggered an international storm when he called for Rushdie to be assassinated.

Although this threat was later withdrawn, harsh penalties remain for Iranians caught in possession of the banned text.

The UK Border Agency has declined to comment.

Lobby of Phil Woolas - 4th December 2009

CHILD M VIGIL - Manchester 27th November

What Can You Do?

Sign the petition - download a copy here

We need to collect thousands of signatures. Make sure you’ve signed it! Take a copy and collect signatures yourself – they can be returned to the Campaign address below.

Sign the online petition here

Write to the Home Secretary

This is one of the best ways you can help the campaign. In it you need to:
- include Home Office reference numbers: G1158044, G1158044/2 and G1158044/7
- ask for the whole family to be given leave to remain
- say why Child “M” and his family would be in danger if they are sent back to Iran
- express concern at how Child “M” and his family have been treated
- send it to the Home Secretary, Home Office, 2 Marsham Street London, SW1P 4DF.

Child M on Facebook

"Child M, like the many other minors detained by the UK authorities in a clear breach of their human rights, has committed no offence - other than being born in a country which seeks to deny freedom of speech, then coming with his family to the UK where they believed their rights would be upheld. An immigration centre is no place for a child and the Green Party is calling on the Home Office to immediately end its policy of incarcerating innocent young people, as well as to allow Child M and his family to remain in the UK."
Caroline Lucas MEP