The representative for the United Kingdom of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), vicky tennantcalled this Wednesday “very worrying” he bill submitted by the London Government for deny asylum to immigrants who arrive in the country illegally.
In statements released today by the British chain BBCTennant alluded to the plans exposed yesterday by the prime minister, Rishi Sunakand the head of the Interior, Suella Bravermanaccording to which immigrants entering the UK on small boats will not be able to apply for asylum in the UK and will be arrested.
“We are very concerned, as this effectively means close access to asylum to the UK for those arriving in the country irregularly”, pointed out the UNHCR representative, who added that the proposal “is a clear violation of the Refugee Convention”, since even “people who have very compelling claims, they simply won’t have the opportunity to present them”.
Tennant considered that the migration problems that London alleges can be addressed by improving the system and controls, and urged the Sunak Executive to “make the asylum system work” with “fair, efficient and faster” processes.
Among his plans, which have begun to be processed in Parliament, Sunak revealed that immigrants who arrive illegally will be kicked out in a matter of weeks“either to their own country, if it is safe, or to a safe third country like Rwanda” and “they may not make spurious human rights claims either”.
Braverman said that the government has “skirted the limits of international law” with a law that bans asylum claims from anyone arriving in Britain unauthorized and will urge the government to detain and deport such people “to their country of origin or a safe third country.” They would be barred from re-entering the country forever.
“If you come here illegally, you should not be able to stay,” Braverman wrote in the Daily Telegraph.
The government claims its Illegal Migration Act will stop migrants and deal a blow to smuggling groups that send desperate people on dangerous voyages along one of the world’s busiest shipping lanes.
Sunak claimed the law would “regain control” of Britain’s border, a key promise in the successful but divisive campaign to get Britain out of the European Union.
His detractors say that the plan is unethical and impossible to implement because people fleeing war and persecution cannot be sent home, and that is likely to add to a series of broken anti-immigration promises by successive British governments.
“The law will not prevent small ships from crossing the Canal. It will only add to the trauma for the people on those ships, while further damaging Britain’s international reputation for fairness and compassion.”said Laura Kyrke-Smith, executive director of the International Rescue Committee humanitarian group.
Great Britain receives fewer asylum seekers than European countries such as Italy, Germany or France. But thousands of migrants from around the world travel to northern France every year in the hope of reaching Britain, drawn by family ties, the English language or the impression that it is easy to find a job.
(With information from EFE and AP)
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