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Ministers quizzed after detainee dies at Yarl's Wood

40-year-old woman passes away in unconfirmed circumstances

Ministers were quizzed over the future of Yarl’s Wood detention centre yesterday after the death of a detainee.

An emergency debate in Parliament was called after a 40 year-old woman held at the centre died of unconfirmed circumstances on Sunday.

Shadow home secretary Yvette Copper asked Immigration Minister James Brokenshire to address some of the concerns surrounding “initial reports that the detainee was refused requests for medical health”.

The Tory argued it was “far too early to draw conclusions” and that the “established procedure is to ask the police to look at the circumstances” before making any further comment.

Mr Brokenshire also highlighted how he expected the system to be “firm but fair”.

Ms Cooper later brought the case of asylum seeking Yashika Bageerathi to the debate.

The 19 year-old star pupil is currently held at Yarl’s Wood and being threatened with deportation just before sitting her A-levels.

Chairman of the Home Affairs Committee Keith Vaz - recently lobbied by activists on Ms Bageerathi’s case - reminded the House of other cases of death in custody like Jimmy Mubenga.

The news of the fatality broke out mere months after a case of sexual abuse of vulnerable detainees was being perpetrated by Serco employees at the centre.

Air Mauritius refused to board Ms Bageerathi on her deportation flight this Sunday as reported by the Star. Similar events had unfurled last week when UKBA tried to send her back to Port Louis with British Airways.


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