The migrant dog whistle is blown again…

 © House of Lords 2022 / photography by Roger Harris

From today, the government has announced, “anyone crossing the Channel will be detained and removed to a safe country within weeks.”

To be clear, Home Secretary, Suella Braverman MP, is not talking about those travelling from Calais to Dover with P&O, DFDS, or Irish Ferries.

No, she is talking about desperate people, mostly genuine asylum seekers, who can’t get here by “normal means” because those means aren’t available to them.

Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, said this evening that “illegal migrants”, as he calls them, will be immediately sent back to their home country “if it is safe to do so” or, if not, deported to a third country, such as Rwanda.

Isn’t there a big clue in Mr Sunak’s words?

The majority of those arriving here in flimsy boats can’t be sent back to their “home country” because their home country isn’t safe.

That’s why they had to escape their UNSAFE country to find a new home.

Most #refugees don’t come to the UK, and most don’t want to. But those relatively few who do mostly have compelling reasons, such as they already have family here, or because of colonial ties, they speak our language.

Now, if the new Illegal Migration Bill is passed, anyone arriving here by an “irregular route” will automatically forfeit ALL rights to claim asylum in the UK, FOREVER, or to make any legal appeals against that decision.

Instead, they will be immediately locked up in detention centres now being built (call them prisons).

Then, as fast as possible, they will be flown out to Rwanda at huge expense (clue: because in most cases, it won’t be safe to send them back to their home country).

Any human rights claims will ONLY be heard AFTER the asylum seeker has been kicked out.

The irony.

Rather than desperate refugees being “illegal,” it’s Britain that is acting illegally.

What the government wants to do almost certainly breaches international human rights legislation, and it certainly breaches humanity.

And to think, once-upon-a-time, it was illegal Britons who travelled to other countries in boats, not to claim asylum or to befriend the locals, but to plunder those lands of their riches and to create the world’s biggest empire.

But that’s another story, isn’t it?