Man who died after being held at Manston asylum centre named

Hussein Haseeb Ahmed, a 31-year-old from Iraq who tested positive for diptheria, died in hospital on 19 November

A man who died after being held at Manston reception centre in Kent, where initial checks are carried out on small boat arrivals, has been named as Hussein Haseeb Ahmed, a 31-year-old from Iraq.

Ahmed arrived in the UK on a small boat on 12 November and was being processed at Manston when he became ill and died in hospital on 19 November.

Initially, the Home Office said he was not believed to have had diphtheria but officials later said a PCR test had confirmed he had the infection. It is not yet known whether diphtheria was the cause of his death.

The death is the subject of a coronial investigation and one by the prisons and probation ombudsman.

The UK Health Security Agency has confirmed there have been 50 diphtheria cases this year, 49 of them relating to asylum seekers in Manston in October and November.

There have been reports of further cases at Manston in the past few days. After a week without small boat crossings because of poor weather conditions, crossings have resumed, and after Manston was emptiedat the end of last month it has started to take in new arrivals again.

Home Office sources said they would not be providing a “running commentary” on diphtheria cases at Manston.

A spokesperson said: “It is untrue to suggest there is an outbreak on site. Migrants are arriving at Manston with diphtheria. We take both the welfare of those in our care and our wider public health responsibilities extremely seriously.”

Regarding the man who died after falling ill at Manston, a Home Office spokesperson said: “We can confirm the identity of the man who died in hospital after being detained at Manston as Hussein Haseeb Ahmed, a 31-year-old Iraqi national.

“Our thoughts continue to be with his family and all those who have been affected by this loss. The family have been offered support and have requested privacy during this difficult time.”

Home Office sources said that after next of kin were informed they were offered support by a Home Office family liaison officer.


Diane Taylor

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

Article image
Manston asylum centre now empty after weeks of controversy
Vacating of Home Office site follows series of concerns including over outbreak of diphtheria

Diane Taylor

22, Nov, 2022 @9:39 AM

Article image
Border Force union joins legal action over conditions at Manston asylum centre
Exclusive: PCS joins action with charity and a woman placed at Kent processing centre for boat arrivals

Diane Taylor

05, Nov, 2022 @1:53 PM

Article image
Manston asylum centre could be overwhelmed again within weeks, staff warn
Exclusive: Staff at processing centre say lack of ‘upstream accommodation’ could see return to conditions that led to disease and violence

Rajeev Syal and Diane Taylor

30, May, 2023 @5:56 PM

Article image
Home Office contractors removed for trying to sell drugs at Manston asylum centre
Exclusive: Staff disciplined after asylum seekers understood to have complained about attempts to sell them cannabis

Diane Taylor

04, Nov, 2022 @2:13 PM

Article image
Coaches keep arriving at Manston migrant centre
Home Office under fire over alleged overcrowding at processing centre for asylum seekers in Kent

Diane Taylor

30, Oct, 2022 @6:54 PM

Article image
Former Manston asylum seeker sleeping rough pleads for place to stay
Mamlye, 27, is one of about 40 people driven out of asylum centre last week and left to fend for themselves

Matthew Weaver

09, Nov, 2022 @4:57 PM

Article image
Diphtheria outbreak confirmed at asylum seeker centre in Kent
‘Very small’ number of cases reported at Manston airfield, where about 3,000 people are staying in tents

Diane Taylor

20, Oct, 2022 @11:27 AM

Article image
Manston asylum centre not operating legally, concedes minister
Immigration minister says legal action has begun on behalf of some detainees in Kent processing centre

Peter Walker Political correspondent

03, Nov, 2022 @8:53 AM

Article image
Manston health concerns raised with Home Office weeks before outbreak
Local officials warned of need to improve infection control measures shortly before diphtheria cases detected

Diane Taylor

06, Feb, 2023 @11:44 AM

Article image
Manston asylum centre death may have been caused by diphtheria
Home Office says follow-up PCR test was positive and they are offering vaccinations to people at the Kent facility

Guardian staff and agency

26, Nov, 2022 @2:52 PM