Diane Abbott demands ‘sensible cooperation’ with France to tackle migrant crossings

Diane Abbott calls for ‘sensible cooperation’ with France

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Priti Patel introduced a new immigration bill to try and stop boats of migrants crossing the Channel from France. Hundred of people including small children have made the dangerous crossing to come to the UK, most crossing in ill-equipped, over capacitated small boats. The latest reports suggest over 24,700 asylum seekers have made the crossing this year, almost three times the number that arrived on UK shores last year.

Diane Abbott told the BBC the Home Secretary she must reach a new “sensible cooperation” agreement with the French if she wants to reduce the number of arrivals.

She said: “I can only really speak for myself and say the Government needs to come up with sensible co-operation with the French to really deal with this.

BBC presenter Emily Maitlis asked the MP of Hackney North and Stoke Newington if she would be letting asylum seekers that have come to the UK work and if that would be the Diane Abbott Home Secretary policy.

Ma Abbott said: “I wouldn’t want to outline a comprehensive asylum policy on Newsnight in thirty seconds.”

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The Labour MP continued  to discuss her stance on Channel Crossing by outlining what she would do about the current issue UK Border force are currently facing when they stop migrants.

She said: “What I would say is this adversary attitude toward the French and almost trying to scapegoat asylum seekers who are just trying desperate and wouldn’t get into a small boat to cross the Channel if you were not actually desperate.

“Scapegoating the French stigmatising the desperate asylum seekers is not working”

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The Home Office has been writing to councils to ask them to take migrant children who have arrived in the UK without any guardians or parents.

A voluntary scheme will become compulsory which now means that young people who are being looked after by authorities on the South coast of England will now be moved to other parts of the country.

The Home Office has decided to send letters to more than 200 British councils giving them two weeks to present the Government with reasons as to why they should decline the parentless youngsters who have arrived.

The councils will be informed of the new changes on Tuesday.


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Councillor James Jamieson the chairman of the Local Government Association, said that most councils have come forward on a voluntary basis to offer help and support and that authorities will want to work “closely with the Government to ensure the rights and needs of children are at the heart of these new arrangements”.

Mr Jameson also added: “These need to enable local partners to give children the help they need, including mental and physical health support and appropriate education.

“Councils continue to face challenges in finding appropriate homes, with ongoing issues around centrally-led age assessment and delays in decision-making adding uncertainty for both councils and young people.

“These new arrangements must continue to swiftly take into account existing pressures in local areas, with greater join up across government to improve engagement with councils on all the programmes that support new arrivals to start new lives in the UK.”

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