December 7, 2021
From Stand Up To Racism (UK)
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Whilst so many warm hearts and welcomes are waiting for the men, women and children seeking safety here, the current UK government are not amongst them“, says Sabir Zazai of Scottish Refugee Council (see full quotes below)

For Immediate Release / Tuesday 7 December 2021

PRESS RELEASE: Anti racists say Nationality and Borders Bill is ‘tantamount to state murder’ as bill reaches its third reading

Anti racists vow to continue and spread opposition to the government’s Nationality and Borders Bill as it is reaches its third reading in parliament this week, condemning the new legislation as “a brutal, murderous and racist intensification of the hostile environment”.

The bill would mean for the time the first time, entering Britain ‘illegally’ could negatively impact the progress of an asylum claim. Patel’s policy outlines that only those who arrive via a ‘legal’ route to be helped. Yet less than 1 percent of the world’s refugees follow ‘legal’ migration routes, such as resettlement schemes. Read more at care4calais.org/far-from-fair

Refugee organisations have repeatedly pointed out that the vast majority of asylum claims come from countries listed by the Global Peace Index as the most dangerous in the world, and that because there is no safe legal route to enter Britain for most refugees, the majority have no choice but to seek unsafe routes. Refusing to bring those arriving by boat to shore will only lead to futher deaths.

Campaigners argue that tragedies such as today are a direct result of the British government refusing to allow safe and legal routes for refugees, a situation which will be made worse by the Nationality and Borders Bill, said by the UNHCR to “undermine, not promote, the government’s stated goal of improving protection for those at risk of persecution.”

Stand Up To Racism calls for the scrapping of the Nationality and Borders bill and the rapid expansion of safe and legal routes for refugees to enter Britain and claim asylum.

Patel has also boasted of having deported nearly 8,500 “foreign national offenders,” claiming to have done so to protect victims. However passenger lists of deportation flights have shown deportees have overwhelmingly been convicted of minor offences and have already served their sentence.

The widely reported mass community response on Kenmure Street, Pollokshields, in May that stopped a Home Office dawn raid removing two neighbours has been celebrated by anti racists as “an inspiring action that reflected a widespread feeling of solidarity with refugees and migrants, and opposition to government’s hostile environment”.  Stand Up To Racism has called protests and will continue to work alongside others as part of a wider campaign to “keep the fight on the streets and defeat Patel’s racist, inhuman attack on refugees”.

Labour MP Diane Abbott said

The Bill proposes a new ultra-harsh regime for treating people who have every right to seek asylum here. At the same time, it also creates up to 7 million second-class citizens of British people, who can have their citizenship removed at whim. It is a recipe for the Windrush scandal on a vast scale. These are just two key reasons this Bill should be opposed”.

Wilf Sullivan, TUC Race Equality Officer, said

“The TUC believes that everybody should be treated with fairness, dignity and respect.  We know that most people believe that we should protect people trying to escape war, persecution and danger.  

“The nationality and borders Bill will result in people seeking safety being unable to find sanctuary in Britain and make it more likely that those in desperate situations will continue to risk their lives claiming asylum in the UK.  It will result in more tragedies as we have just witnessed in the English channel. 

“We must defeat this bill and ensure that the Government lives up to its international obligations to protect those seeking asylum in the UK.”

Weyman Bennett from Stand Up To Racism said
“The borders and nationality bill is a vicious racist and murderous piece of legislation. It is a fiction that this government believes in any form of real human rights – the policy reflects that the government has not got one iota of respect for humanity. We must organise urgently and broadly to oppose this brutal, murderous and racist intensification of the hostile environment.”

Sabir Zazai, Scottish Refugee Council CEO, said

“Migration is an important part of our history and offering people sanctuary will continue to be central to our values. Sadly, this Bill is a nadir in the UK refugee policy and law. Whilst so many warm hearts and welcomes are waiting for the men, women and children seeking safety here, the current UK government are not amongst them.

“The UK government is selfishly turning its back on fellow human beings, leaving them to suffering or worse, death.This isn’t the time to turn our backs on vulnerable people seeking sanctuary. Instead we must stand together with refugees and extend a hand of friendship to those fleeing persecution and human rights violations. After all refugee rights are out right.”

Pinar Aksu, human rights campaigner with Maryhill Integration Network, a Stand Up To Racism activist, and leading in the mass action that stopped the dawn raid in Pollokshields, Glasgow, said

The Anti-refugee bill is a direct violation to human rights and international protection policy and law. It will create further tradegies at the borders and within our communities.

“The bill proposes to criminalise those who are seeking asylum, to create an offshore asylum process centre – moving away from housing people within communities, making it extremely difficult for people to legally claim asylum, therefore further creating routes for unsafe journeys and is in direct violation of the human rights protection as condemned by the UNHCR.

“If we want to create safe routes, welcome people in our communities, want a system based on compassion and human rights, I urge all the MPs not to vote in favour of the bill.”

Aamer Anwar, lawyer who negotiated the freedom of the two detainees at Kenmure Street, said

“This bill is tantamount to state sanctioned murder, that can only perpetuate a barbaric system tearing up any claims of the UK being civilised in how we treat those fleeing war, starvation and persecution.”

Sabby Dhalu, Stand up to Racism Co-Convenor said
“Denying those fleeing war and persecution a legal and safe route into the country when most can only claim asylum from inside Britain is a recipe for tragedy. This horrific loss of life could have been avoided if the British Government allowed safe passage for refugees. The situation will worsen if the Nationality and Borders Bill becomes law.

“The only way for further tragedies to be avoided is for the Government to reverse its racist refugee policy, act to provide safe passage and scrap the Nationality and Borders Bill.”

For further quotes & information:

[email protected]




Source: Standuptoracism.org.uk