The United Nations refugee organisation, UNHCR, objects to a UK bill that should discourage people from coming to the UK.
If the proposal is adopted, according to the UNHCR, there will be a dichotomy between a relatively small group of asylum seekers who came to the UK with the permission of the UK government and a much larger group who came on their own initiative. Such a dichotomy has no basis in international law, says the UNHCR representative in the UK, Rossella Pagliuchi-Lor.
Last year, 8,500 migrants arrived in boats from France to England. This year there are more than 12,000. Interior Minister Patel is under great pressure from her Conservative Party to do something about it.
Initially, it wants to expel asylum seekers who came to the UK without government permission to the country where they first fled. If this does not work, according to her bill they will be granted a temporary residence permit that can be revoked at any time.
They will live for years in a precarious and poverty-stricken life and have no right to family reunification, says Pagliuchi-Lor.
“This will cause health damage and hinder their integration. The financial, individual and social price is high.”
Furthermore, according to Pagliuchi-Lor, there is no evidence that this law will deter asylum seekers. The British parliament has yet to give its opinion on the proposal.