UK: Clapham attack should not be used as pretext to target people seeking asylum

Responding to calls to change the UK’s asylum system following this week’s attack in Clapham in south London, Sacha Deshmukh, Amnesty International UK’s Chief Executive, said:

“Our hearts go out to all the victims of the brutal attack in Clapham.

“This disturbing crime should not be used as a pretext to target people seeking asylum or in any way undermine a process designed to assess people’s asylum claims and provide protection to those at risk of persecution overseas.

“Ministers have already severely damaged the UK’s asylum system, creating chaos at the Home Office with a policy of leaving tens of thousands of people in limbo and with no idea of when - or even whether - their claims will be considered.

“The Government urgently needs to ensure that the claims of anyone seeking asylum in the UK are decided fairly and efficiently and not be distracted by those seeking to exploit the Clapham attack for their own ends.

“There will always be a place for reflection on whether our policing, mental health and other services can better safeguard us all, but launching cynical and ill-informed attacks on the asylum system won’t help safeguard anybody.”

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