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Just one unaccompanied child refugee brought to Northern Ireland under Dubs scheme

Amnesty International has revealed that just one unaccompanied child refugee has been brought to Northern Ireland under the Dubs scheme, introduced by the Government in response to a campaign fronted by Labour peer and former child refugee, Lord Dubs.

The Home Secretary Amber Rudd has now confirmed the scheme will be restricted to just 350 children, with 200 of this total having already arrived.

Patrick Corrigan, Northern Ireland Programme Director of Amnesty International, said:

“We can reveal that only one unaccompanied child refugee has been brought to Northern Ireland under this scheme.  

“With wars in Syria and elsewhere showing no signs of ending, there are thousands of desperate, unaccompanied children in need of refuge. Against that background, the fact that only one such vulnerable child has been settled in all of Northern Ireland under the scheme should shame the government for its lack of compassion.

“The announcement that the scheme is now to be ended with only 350 children helped, is a dismal reassertion of the government’s refusal to share responsibility with European neighbours for what is a global crisis in urgent need of a collective response.”

“By depriving refugee children of a safe route out of dangerous situations elsewhere, the government only increases the risk that these children fall victim to traffickers and other abusers. The Home Secretary must think again.”

On Wednesday, the government announced its intention to end its use of the Dubs scheme.

The scheme, which was introduced into last year’s Immigration Act in response to Lord Dubs’ campaign, requires the Home Office to allow some of the most vulnerable unaccompanied children stranded in Europe into the UK.

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