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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Mugabe torturer who pulled out man's teeth with pliers is granted asylum in UK (and we'll also have to pick up the tab for him and his wife's HIV trea

By Daily Mail Reporter

-Human Rights Act prevents deportation of killer
-'Asylum is for people who are at risk from despots, not for people like him,' says MP

Victims: Machemedze was responsible for killing and maiming Zimbabweans, including one whose teeth were pulled out with pliers (file picture shows torture victims with burns)

A murdering asylum seeker who worked as a torturer for the Mugabe regime in Zimbabwe will not be deported - because of concerns for his safety if he returns home.

Phillip Machemedze smashed a man's jaw with pliers before extracting his teeth, one of his many victims while working for Zimbabwe's notorious Central Intelligence organisation.

The 47-year-old also gave electric shocks to a white farmer, whipped a woman before pouring salt in her wounds and took part in the 'slow' killing of one of Mugabe's political opponents, the Sun reported today.

However, Machemedze 'grew tired' of his work as a torturer and apparently fearing Mugabe would turn against him, he fled to Britain 11 years ago.

Despite only having a temporary visa, Machemedze has remained in the country ever since, receiving taxpayer-funded treatment for HIV.

Thanks to the Human Rights Act, Machemedze and his wife Febbie, 40, who also has the disease, will continue to live and be treated in Britain at the taxpayers' expense.

Beatings: A member of Zimbabwe opposition party Movement for Democratic Change displays his injuries at the hands of Mugabe thugs (file picture)

At an asylum appeal hearing in Newport, South Wales, Mr Justice David Archer said Machemedze was 'deeply involved in savage acts of extreme violence'.

The tribunal also heard that some of the tortures 'were too gruesome to recount'.

He added: 'Whatever crimes he has committed he cannot be returned to face the highly likely prospect of torture and execution without trial, the Sun reported.

The appeal hearing was brought by the Home Office and followed a judgment earlier this month which allowed the pair to stay in Britain indefinitely but did not grant asylum.

At the earlier hearing, Senior Immigration Judge Robert Martin said: 'It is true that Phillip Machemedze committed abhorrent acts and deserves no sympathy or favours.

'However, it is also true that we are bound by the European Convention on Human Rights and Articles 2 and 3 are absolute,' New Zimbabwe reported.

Kate Hoey, Labour MP and head of the Commons All Party Group on Zimbabwe, said: 'This is a shocking decision. Asylum is for people who are at risk from despots, not for people like him.'

Torture: Machemedze worked for Robert Mugabe's notorious Central Intelligence Organisation where he tortured opponents of the Zimbabwe leader

Sir Andrew Green, of think tank Migrationwatch UK, said: 'This is an obscene distortion of the whole purpose of Human Rights legislation.

'Asylum claims of this kind can be rejected but not human rights claims. This has to be changed or we will become a honey pot for torturers from around the world.'

Machemedze and his wife moved to Britain in 2000 and 2001 respectively, leaving behind their three children in Zimbabwe who have not been harmed.

The pair, who live in Fishponds, Bristol, arrived in Britain on six-month visas.

A Home Office spokesman said: 'The government is disappointed with the judgment and has requested permission to appeal.

'The Immigration Judge agreed that this individual was not entitled to asylum, but allowed his appeal in accordance with the European Convention on Human Rights.

'We consider all asylum applications on their individual merits. However, it is the government's policy that the UK should not be a refuge for war criminals or those who have committed crimes against humanity or genocide.

'Where someone has been found not to need protection, we expect them to leave voluntarily. For those who choose not to do so, we will seek to enforce their departure.'



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