26 August 2007

Earned Legalisation for Illegal Immigrants

Welcome to Great Britain: Rolling out the red carpet [based on cartoon at the Intrepid Liberal Journal]Liberal Democrat home affairs spokesman, Nick Clegg, has taken up the call of human rights organisations for some kind of amnesty for illegal immigrants. Writing in Sunday's Observer, the MP widely expected to succeed Sir Menzies Campbell as party leader proposes an 'earned' amnesty for illegal immigrants who have 'lived in the UK for many years.'

Although Clegg is at least partially right in opposing Government plans to grant residence to tens of thousands of long-term asylum applicants, Shadow home secretary David Davis is even more correct when he says the Lib Dem's alternative ideas are "irresponsible" and "unfair":

"This is irresponsible because on the one hand it will encourage people to come here illegally as well as being unfair to those who have obeyed the law and tried to enter the UK legally. It will act as a green light to a new future wave of illegal immigrants who will be told by their criminal handlers that if they remain in the UK long enough they will be allowed to stay permanently."
As I noted back in April, precedents elsewhere in Europe make clear that amnesties do nothing to reduce the problem of illegal immigration and may in fact exacerbate it. Just this week, publication of the annual immigration and quarterly asylum statistics revealed that the Government continues to remove fewer failed asylum seekers than arrive and the number of migrants from accession countries claiming benefit has trebled in the last quarter alone.

We do not need an amnesty to solve this crisis. Neither do we need a common asylum policy to ensure further "harmonisation" across Europe on this issue. What we need is for tighter control of our borders and stricter enforcement of existing legislation, for instance to tackle illegal employment.

4 comments:

Beachcomber said...

Clegg claimed on Today this morning that we already have a rolling amnesty for anyone who's been here for more than 14 years. If this is true, no wonder they keep making the UK their first point of entry to the EU!

EU-watch said...

The Bruges Group reports: EU TO FURTHER WEAKEN THE UK’s IMMIGRATION POLICY

The EU thinks that Britain’s rules on who should be allowed to reside here permanently are too stringent.

Currently the EU allows anyone, except refugees, from outside of the EU who has lived in the UK for five years indefinite leave to remain, unless there are exceptional circumstances; which the EU also determines. The EU also insists that they receive the same rights as full British citizens.

The European Union is proposing to grant this right to refugees as well as those that the EU decides should receive subsidiary protection.

The EU is also proposing that refugees that are awarded indefinite leave to remain in one EU country can then come and reside in Britain.

This will make it almost impossible for the UK to return refugees to their country of origin opening up wide gaps in the UK’s borders.

JC said...

Don't miss tonight's Newsnight - Cameron says that immigration over the past decade has been too high, has put too great a burden on public services, and needs to be better controlled. Just wait for Labour to accuse him of lurching to the right.

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I think Nick Clegg is one of the best democrats,specially if we're talking about his experience in the illegal immigrants matter. Although this guy is the most famous in his political party because Clegg's first major elected position was as a Member of the European Parliament (MEP) for the East Midlands from 1999 to 2004.