NUJ calls on UK government to halt deportation of journalist Ghazi Ghareeb Zorab 

  • 29 Jun 2023

The NUJ has urged UK authorities to stop the deportation of a Kurdish journalist facing threats to his safety if returned to Iraq.  

Ghazi Ghareeb Zorab, who is seeking asylum in the UK, was detained on 26 June at the Dallas Court Immigration Centre in Salford and informed he would be deported to Jordan on 1 July. He is expected to be onwardly moved from there to Iraq despite fears about credible threats to his life.  

The NUJ has expressed grave concern about the dangers Zorab will face if deported, because of his work as a journalist. His reporting on politics in the Kurdistan region means he is a likely target and could be subjected to violent attacks and torture.

The International Federation of Journalists has highlighted the disregard for journalists’ human rights in Iraqi Kurdistan, with arbitrary arrests and attacks by security forces recorded. In 2022, at least 73 cases of media and rights violations occurred. 

The NUJ is calling on UK authorities to demonstrate their commitment to the protection of journalists and halt his deportation. Zorab was unaware he would be detained when reporting at the immigration centre this week, action he had complied with for several months. 

If returned to Iraq, the NUJ believes the UK government will be facilitating the persecution of Zorab and putting his life at risk, and urges the Home Office to urgently reconsider this case in light of the safety risks posed to him because of his work as a journalist. 

Ghazi Ghareeb Zorab on far left in blue shirt. 


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