From The Guardian: Lawyers and campaigners have criticised Sajid Javid after the home secretary appeared to suggest asylum seekers should be deterred from crossing the Channel in small boats by making it harder to gain asylum, a right enshrined in international law.
The Refugee Council called the comments “deeply concerning” and said the suggestion of denying asylum was unlawful. The criticism was echoed by the shadow home secretary, Diane Abbott, who called the comments “a disgrace”. […]
Colin Yeo, a leading immigration and asylum barrister at Garden Court chambers, said the home secretary’s apparent threat was illegal. “Sending genuine refugees to face persecution in order to dissuade others from seeking to come here is plainly illegal,” he told the Guardian.
“I imagine the home secretary knows this, but if so it is depressing that he is still saying it as a way of trying to make himself sound tough. The latest asylum statistics show that around three-quarters of Iranian asylum claims succeed, so we are talking here about genuine refugees.”
[Read full article on Guardian website…]
From Morning Star: The Tories are shamefully fabricating a “mini-riot” over whether Jeremy Corbyn called Theresa May a “stupid woman”, say senior Labour figures.
Deputy Labour leader Tom Watson and shadow home secretary Diane Abbott said the row was overshadowing the rest of politics with fewer than 100 days until Brexit.
During Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday, TV cameras had caught him saying something inaudible to those opposite him after Ms May likened his tabling of a confidence vote in her to a Christmas pantomime, while making panto-themed jokes.
He was recalled to the Commons immediately after the session ended over the incident, and he told MPs he used the phrase “stupid people.”
Opposition MPs had criticised the fake outrage over the allegation of misogyny that a number of prominent Conservative MPs were themselves guilty of, or worse.
From The Guardian: Diane Abbott has written to the home secretary, Amber Rudd, to ask why she has been refused permission to visit the controversial Yarl’s Wood immigration removal centre despite at least a dozen requests over more than a year.
The shadow home secretary said getting access to the centre in Bedfordshire, which has regularly seen concerns raised about inappropriate treatment of highly vulnerable detainees, was a necessary part of her job.
Yarl’s Wood, where foreign nationals are detained before being deported, faced criticism last month after the chief inspector of prisons, Peter Clarke, said he had found increasing numbers of women held there despite evidence they were victims of torture, rape and trafficking.
Clarke said he was concerned to find that the Home Office had refused to accept that rape came within the legal definition of torture.
In July a Kenyan asylum seeker won a court victory, with the Home Office found to have acted unlawfully by locking her in a “punishment room” at Yarl’s Wood for an excessive time.