The Times - UK (2022-01-24)

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10 Monday January 24 2022 | the times


News


The Liverpool suicide bomber travelled
to the UK on a legitimate Jordanian
passport and a judge rejected his asy-
lum case on several grounds nearly
seven years before the attack.
Court documents obtained by The
Times reveal that Emad al-Swealmeen,
32, told several lies to try to stay in Brit-
ain but his case fell apart within 12
months, raising further questions
about why he was not deported before
the attack on November 14.
Athough Swealmeen claimed to be
Syrian and in fear of his life, language
analysis by the Home Office revealed
he was from Iraq. An immigration


Questions over why bomber wasn’t deported


Fiona Hamilton
Crime and Security Editor


judge concluded he had no documents
to support his claim to be Syrian and no
connections with that country. He had
travelled into the UK on a genuine Jor-
danian passport that he claimed was a
fake to bolster his case.
Despite the judgment Swealmeen
was able to stay in the UK, where he
converted to Christianity and made
more asylum appeals.
He killed himself and injured a taxi
driver last Remembrance Sunday when
he detonated an improvised explosive
device containing 2,000 ball bearings
outside Liverpool Women’s Hospital.
The Home Office has refused to
comment on details of Swealmeen’s
asylum case and whether efforts were
made to deport him. An inquest, the

only public proceedings relating to the
bombing, concluded in a single day.
Swealmeen, who suffered from
depression, anxiety and post-traumatic
stress disorder, arrived in Britain in
April 2014 and the Home Office refused
his asylum claim in November that
year. He appealed to the First-tier

Tribunal but his case was rejected on
April 16, 2015.
The judgment reveals that Sweal-
meen claimed he was born and brought
up in Syria but went to live in the United
Arab Emirates (UAE) in 2013. He said
he was at risk of persecution if he were
returned to Syria.
In reality Swealmeen had a middle-
class upbringing in Jordan, Iraq and
Dubai. His mother was Iraqi and his
father an engineer in Jordan, where he
held a passport.
He had been living in the UAE and
his explanations for leaving were “not
credible”, and there was nothing to sug-
gest he would be at risk in Jordan or
Iraq if he were returned there.
Priti Patel, the home secretary, said

he exploited the “merry-go-round” of
Britain’s “broken” asylum system by
making repeated claims to stay.
However, there is believed to have
been a period of at least two years
where there were no active appeals for
Swealmeen, yet a removal order was
not sought for him.
Swealmeen visited Liverpool’s Angli-
can Cathedral in 2015 saying he wanted
to convert. He took an Alpha course to
teach him about Christianity and was
confirmed in May 2017.
He made a later asylum appeal claim-
ing that his late grandfather’s Syrian
passport had been found. There was a
claim, under his alias Enzo Almeni, that
is understood to have been under
review at the time of the attack.

Emad al-Swealmeen detonated a
device outside a Liverpool hospital

permission to relocate a memorial to
Rustat, one of the college’s “most signif-
icant benefactors”, from the chapel to
an exhibition area, replacing the mem-
orial with a plaque explaining Rustat’s
involvement in the slave trade.
In the late 17th century he was an
investor and director in the Royal Afri-
can Company, which shipped more

slaves across the Atlantic than any
other company.
A church judge heard from the col-
lege that: “The memorial continues to
cause offence to users of the chapel and
its presence in the chapel is disruptive
to the mission and witness of the
Church of England in the college.”
About 70 alumni are understood to

oppose the plans and a consistory court
rejected their application to postpone
the hearing, which is due to start next
Wednesday. Justin Gau, representing
the opponents, said that the college was
“aware that Rustat made little money
out of the slave trade and did not use
money derived from that source to ben-
efit the college”.

The dispute about whether an ornate
memorial to Tobias Rustat, an investor
in the slave trade, should be removed
from a Cambridge college chapel will
go before a church court next week.
Jesus College has applied for church

Cambridge asks court to decide fate of memorial to slaver


Kaya Burgess
Religious Affairs Correspondent

Drawings by


Holocaust boy


on show at last


Jack Blackburn


Amid the horror of the Holocaust,
Thomas Geve had little besides a few
scraps of paper and some charcoal he
had found in a fire pit. Aged 13, he used
them to draw what he was seeing.
In 1946, reunited with his father in
London, he tried to get his images of
Auschwitz published, to no avail. “The
boy is no Picasso,” the publisher said.
Now, three quarters of a century
later, his story is being fully told in Brit-
ain with The Boy Who Drew Auschwitz
being released in a new edition for
Holocaust Memorial Day on Thursday.
Geve hid his drawings in his straw
sleeping sack, and had to leave them be-
hind when he was hastily evacuated
after the war. “But these images stuck in
my mind,” he said. “Finally, as a free
man, I started to recreate them.”
The final versions were in colour, and
some were drawn while he recuperated
at Zug, Switzerland. Years later Charlie
Inglefield, an expat English writer, saw
them at an exhibition in Zug; the first
step on the journey to publication.
“People ask me if I am happy about
my new book,” Geve said. “There’s
nothing happy about the past, but it is
good that the 40 prisoners who helped
me survive two years of concentration
camps have all become alive again.”


Flicker of hope A player
weighs up his next move
in the Federation of
International Sports
Table Football open
tournament at Haverhill,
Suffolk, on Saturday

CARL RECINE/REUTERS
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