Nick Thomas loses cool in heated exchange with host
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The Shadow Home Secretary Nick Thomas-Symonds was questioned on whether he wants migrants to be given safe travel to the UK or to stop them. Speaking to Trevor Phillips on Sky, Mr Thomas-Symonds said: “What we actually need is to be looking not only at the coast, not only at the coastal patrols. “We need to be looking as well at what is happening away from the coast, disrupting these vile people smugglers on the route that they facilitate.
“People do not become refugees in northern France. This problem is about a far wider issue than that.”
Mr Phillips interjected: “I still don’t quite understand.”
The Labour MP continued: “Trevor, let me just finish! The Government should reintroduce the dub scheme which is a safe route for unaccompanied children.
“The Government should reinstate the international aid budget and the 0.8 percent which tackled why people are displaced from their homes in the first place.”
The Sky host continued: “I still don’t really understand your objective here. Is it to abide safe travel fro 25,000 people who want to land in Britain or is your objective to stop 25,000 people who want to land in Britain?”
Mr Thomas-Symonds continued: “My objective is to stop people risking their lives in the English Channel in the first place. One person risking their life is one too many.”
Children have been pictured among those making more Channel crossings to the UK as a former immigration chief called for arrivals to be processed offshore so officials can turn away failed asylum claims.
Groups of people – some wrapped in blankets, and adults carrying youngsters – arrived in Kent on Saturday.
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Figures for the latest small boat crossings have not yet been provided by the Home Office.
The arrivals came as it was reported that asylum seekers will have to obey strict rules in new centres or face their claims being rejected under plans advocated by Home Secretary Priti Patel.
Kevin Saunders, former chief immigration officer for the UK Border Force, argued that people who arrive in the UK via the Channel need to be processed offshore.
He told Times Radio: “The most effective way would be to take all the people who have arrived in the UK to an offshore processing centre and deal with it offshore.
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“That is the only way you will stop people from coming into the UK. We’ve seen trying to do it with the French on land, on the Channel, nothing works.”
Asked why it had to be offshore, he said: “People will still come to the UK, because they know we are not going to be able to remove them from the United Kingdom when their asylum claim fails.”
He said only a small number of people had been removed this year and described the UK as “just too attractive” for people, adding: “They know that once they’re in the UK they’ve won the jackpot.”
The Home Secretary had been impressed with centres being built in Greece, where migrants were put under strict curfews and faced routine checks on their movements, the Daily Telegraph reported.
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