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'Abhorrent' EU-Turkey refugee-trading plans will empower people smugglers

Responding to the proposed deal between the EU and Turkey that would see refugees and others crossing from Turkey to Greece sent back, in return for European countries taking Syrian refugees currently in Turkey, Steve Symonds, director of Amnesty International UK’s refugee and migrant rights programme, said:

"The UK government's championing of proposals for a one-in-one-out refugees deal between the EU and Turkey is hugely irresponsible.

"The idea of trading in people in this manner is abhorrent and the legality of proposals is highly questionable, with a real danger of refugees being sent back to war zones.

“Ultimately, these plans are unlikely to achieve anything beyond further empowering and enriching the smugglers, as people fleeing conflict and persecution who have been unable to find safety in countries already hosting far more refugees than EU countries, will be forced to take ever more deadly routes to reach Europe.

“The government should firmly reject this deal, stop preening itself over its own very limited refugee response and start genuinely pulling its weight in receiving more refugees, including by allowing British citizens and residents to provide a safe home to their families fleeing conflict at this time of unprecedented global crisis.”


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