UK: Immigration statistics reveal 'abject failure' of Government asylum policy
New Home Office quarterly statistics published hours after two people die crossing the Channel
Slight decrease in number of unresolved asylum cases, with 165,411 compared to 175,457 in previous quarter
‘Nobody should be deceived by the slight decrease in the backlog the Government has itself created by refusing to process people’s asylum claims’ - Steve Valdez-Symonds
Responding to the Government’s latest quarterly immigration statistics, Steve Valdez-Symonds, Amnesty International UK’s Refugee and Migrant Rights Director, said:
“The day after the most recent tragic drownings in the Channel, these figures expose that the Government’s asylum policy is reckless, dysfunctional and in need of a drastic overhaul.
“Nobody should be deceived by the slight decrease in the backlog the Government has itself created by refusing to process people’s asylum claims - this disastrous policy remains in place and is set to worsen if the new Home Secretary activates the draconian Illegal Migration Act.
“For three years, successive home secretaries have pursued an indefensible policy of simply refusing to process claims made in the UK in the hope that other countries would relieve the UK of this responsibility.
“The belated fast-tracking of some claims to try to bring down the backlog is an admission that the policy of refusing to process them has been an abject failure.
“If James Cleverly wishes to show meaningful leadership, he should begin by scrapping this disastrous policy of not processing asylum claims and the legislation introduced with it and get on with the task of deciding people’s claims, providing safety to people entitled to it, and making the asylum system work rather than shutting it down.
“To truly tackle the criminal gangs and save lives, the Home Secretary must urgently establish safe routes so that people don’t need to risk their lives making the perilous journey across the Channel.”