Deathscapes

Jimmy Mubenga - Implications -passive witness or circumstantial accomplice-parallax 1

Deathscapes

Implications

G4S is a global corporation with employees around the world working in the deportation and detention business for governments such as the UK, Australia, and Israel. What happened to Jimmy Mubenga, in broad daylight on board a commercial flight, raises uncomfortable questions for other passengers, and flight crews, as they become witnesses of an unlawful killing by government representatives.

Once hidden, deportations become more visible

The system of transportation of deportees is becoming more visible yet accountability more opaque: “A deeper sense of this world of transportation comes from the study of controversies involving the treatment of deportees on flights. It is when normal procedures fail, when eyewitnesses or operatives speak out, or when public inquiries examine wrongs that the opaque world of the transportation of deportees becomes more fully visible” (Walters, 2016).

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Other passengers on Flight BA77: passive witnesses or circumstantial accomplices?

There have been instances when witnesses get kicked off flights and interrogated as a result of questioning the violence exercised against deportees in commercial flights. Taylor and Lewis (2010 ) report that “Two passengers who attempted to voice their concern as a man was “violently” deported aboard a flight from Heathrow say they were thrown off the aircraft and quizzed by armed police”. Some witnesses have thought that private security guards were police officers.

According to Ben, another witness, passengers were moved away from the rear of the aircraft, and into first class. “You could hear the guy [Mubenga] screaming at the back of the plane,” said Ben. “He was saying: ‘They are going to kill me”.  “BA stewards are understood to have moved two women sitting in the row of seats adjacent to those occupied by Mubenga and the guards”. The vacated seats were taken up by Kevin Wallis, a 58-year-old engineer, who confirms he had full view of the ensuing confrontation just a few feet away.


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