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Abuses Overlooked to Justify Cruel Asylum Policy

This week, the United Kingdom published its safety assessment on Rwanda, intended to justify a recently announced agreement to send asylum seekers crossing the English Channel or other so called “irregular” or dangerous routes to the Central African…
Protesters hold placards reading "refugees welcome here" at a demonstration
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Government Continues to Rip Up its Duties to Asylum Seekers

Shirking its obligations to persons seeking asylum at its shores, the UK government has today signed an agreement with Rwanda to send asylum seekers crossing the English Channel there. Under the new Asylum Partnership Arrangement, people arriving…
British Home Secretary Priti Patel (L), and Rwandan Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Vincent Biruta sign an agreement
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The House of Lords Should Safeguard Life and Rights in the Channel

Today, the House of Lords has the chance to take a stand against the UK government’s attempt to “legalize” pushbacks in the English Channel. The House will debate an amendment to the Nationality and Borders Bill, which would ensure UK officials cannot…
A damaged inflatable small boat is pictured on the shore in Calais, northern France, November 25, 2021.
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Proposed Borders Bill Would Cause More Suffering, Less Protection

Perhaps the most draconian immigration bill in the United Kingdom’s history is moving swiftly through parliament, currently in its final days of scrutiny in the Commons. The Nationality and Borders Bill seeks to dismantle core tenets of the…
A group of people on the deck of HMC Seeker as they wait to be brought ashore by the UK Border Force in Kent. September 22, 2020.
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Rather than Toasting a UN Post, Real Action Needed

Uzbekistan’s ambassador in Geneva was this week elected as one of the vice presidents for 2022 of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), in the latest sign, Uzbekistan says, of its readiness to protect human rights in the international arena…
President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev delivers a speech at the 46th Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council on February 22, 2021.
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Proposed Pushbacks Show Disregard for Life and Safety at Sea

The UK government’s reported plan to “turn around” boats of migrants and refugees in the English Channel is irresponsible, dangerous, and unlawful. But talking about “turn-arounds” almost makes these tactics sound gentle. Pushbacks at sea would…
A group of people thought to be migrants are brought into Dover, Kent, by Border Force officers on September 5, 2021.
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Costly, Abusive Approach Fails to Address System’s Flaws

The United Kingdom government’s new borders bill is expected to include the option of detaining asylum seekers offshore, according to multiple news reports. The emerging details of the policy shift suggest an approach that would not only likely cause…
A group of people on the deck of HMC Seeker as they wait to be brought ashore by the UK Border Force in Kent. September 22, 2020.
News

Iran, Pakistan, Egypt, China, Myanmar Win Women’s Rights Posts

When the United Nations General Assembly held its annual election for seats on the Human Rights Council last October, five countries in the Asia regional group vied for four open seats, including two of the world’s most notorious rights abusers, Saudi…
U.N. headquarters Saturday, Sept. 28, 2019. (AP Photo/Jeenah Moon)
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Working up to 18 hours per day for weeks without breaks or a day off. Being paid little, or not at all. Locked in their employers’ home, fed food scraps, their passports confiscated. These abuses can amount to modern slavery as defined by the United…
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As Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif arrives in Canberra this week for talks to increase economic ties, his Australian counterpart Julie Bishop hopes to finalize an agreement to return thousands of failed Iranian asylum seekers back home. Even more…
Australia's Foreign Minister Julie Bishop meets with Iran's Foreign Affairs Minister Javad Zarif in April 2015.
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The British government’s concern for the safety and well-being of the Yemeni people – already extremely feeble – reached a new low this week. In Geneva, Britain failed to actively promote a Dutch resolution at the United Nations Human Rights Council that…
Damaged buildings in Yemen's southern port city of Aden, May 8, 2015.
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David Cameron’s government has shown a shameful lack of leadership and compassion in the face of Europe’s refugee crisis. Until now, it’s not paid much of a political price for doing so. But the heart-wrenching image of Aylan Kurdi, washed up on a Turkish…
A Syrian family sit on the dock side after being escorted into the harbor by the Greek Coastguard who found them drifting offshore on June 4, 2015 in Kos, Greece.
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Isaac Levine arrived in the UK from Lithuania as a 17-year-old in 1894. Manfred Gorlin left his home in Nazi-controlled Danzig (now in Poland) and arrived in 1939. As the grandchildren of Jews who found refuge from persecution in the UK, we watch the…
migrants uk
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The faces and life stories of the people making the dangerous journey across the Mediterranean have been in the news for months now. Of all people, the UK’s immigration minister should be well informed on the subject. And yet…
migrant tent calais
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On the steps of Downing Street last Friday morning, fresh from an election victory, David Cameron described Britain as a country of “great compassion”. He’s right. The British public contributes generously to humanitarian appeals in response to natural…
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It would appear obvious to anyone paying the least bit of attention to the turmoil in Ukraine that it’s not the safest place to be right now. But in the eyes of the United Kingdom, France and Norway, Ukraine is considered a “safe country of origin.” That…
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As any regular reader of British newspapers will know, the portrayal of migrants and asylum seekers is sometimes less than sympathetic. But a startling new study from the University of Oxford shows that the problem is far more widespread. After reviewing…
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