There is a thriving Somali community in the UK and many of these individuals use fast international money transfer services to send vital money back to their families and communities in their home country.
It is now possible for these people to make use of same day money transfer solutions, meaning their loved ones do not have to wait to access the funds.
Some of these immigrants have spoken out about what they believe to be excessive pressure from British intelligence agents. According to a report in the Independent, a number of Somalis have suggested they are being asked for too much. It is alleged that pressure is being put on young Somali men to spy on their own community.
For example, prominent British Somali singer Aar Maanta claims he is often taken aside to be asked unusual questions in airports. About this, he said: “It’s like there’s a note on the computer and they make you sit in a side room. Then the guys in suits come along. Their general approach is, ‘we can help you if you help us’.”
He added: “The problem is you risk alienating young British Somalis. Anyone with common sense would go to the authorities if they knew something bad was going on. It’s your duty to do that. But they shouldn’t be forcing people to spy.”
Maanta became so frustrated with the regular checks that he made a music video in which he re-enacts being questioned at Heathrow.
Meanwhile, head of Somali Diaspora UK Mohammed Elmi suggested that coercive spying had become so bad that Somali elders in London felt compelled to hold a gathering to discuss the issue. Of the 33 boroughs represented, 17 said they had community members who felt pressured to spy.
He added: “The community is very keen to cooperate with the UK government and security. What is unacceptable is any form of coercion or pressure.”