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Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Yet another Ministerial kick in the teeth for LGBT asylum


Immigration Minister Phil Woolas has condemned websites like this, groups like UK Lesbian and Gay Immigration Group, Churches like Manchester MCC and the thousands of ordinary people who helped save Mehdi Kazemi.

Here's what he said:

In Britain, asylum seekers are given "false hope" by NGOs and migration lawyers. "By giving false hope and by undermining the legal system [they] actually cause more harm than they do good."

So he believes that Britain's asylum system is exploited by migration lawyers and NGOs? "The system is played by migration lawyers and NGOs to the nth degree." In one case, an asylum seeker won after six layers of appeal. "That person has no right to be in this country but I'm sure that there is an industry out there that is a vested interest." He jabs his finger as he recounts desperate asylum seekers visiting his constituency office. "One lady showed me the scars on her thighs from where the soldiers had raped her, so I know, but I cannot take a decision on that lady's behalf if I am," he almost shouts the word, "fogged by cases that are misusing the law." The European Convention on Human Rights, he says, "is meant to protect people from persecution. It is not meant to be an open-borders immigration policy."

Woolas hopes that his willingness to say what many on the left consider unsayable will help shatter the "glass wall" he sees between politicians and ordinary people. He walks out of the sleek glass of the Home Office building and, when he stands in front of an old doorway to have his picture taken, he says he feels "like a nightclub bouncer". He points at me, jokingly in character. "You can't come in," he barks. It seems to come naturally to him.
What a nasty piece of work.

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