Asylum-seekers from Congo face deportation

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Thousands of failed asylum-seekers face forced removal to the volatile Democratic Republic of Congo, where they say they face rape, torture and even death, after a landmark immigration ruling.

The hopes of Congolese asylum-seekers whose cases have been refused rested with one woman, known only as "BK".

After a judicial review this year, it was decided that all removals would be put on hold until a ruling was made in her case.

With BK's appeal dismissed on the grounds of insubstantial evidence, all those who fled the country's regime are now at risk of being returned.

Immigration experts belive there are 10,000 failed DRC asylum-seekers in the UK, although some think the figure may be as high as several hundred thousand.

A two-year moratorium on removals to Zimbabwe ended last month after it was ruled that failed asylum-seekers would not necessarily face persecution on their return.

The DRC is widely acknowledged to be plagued by human rights abuses, and campaigners say returned asylum-seekers become prime targets on arrival because they are seen as traitors.