174 human rights groups and charities urge Sunak to shelve illegal migration bill, saying it’s ‘effectively ban on asylum’
An open letter has been published this morning, signed by representatives from 174 human rights organisations, civil society groups and charities, calling for the illegal migration bill to be shelved. Organised by Liberty, it says the bill is “effectively a ban on asylum”.
The full text of the letter, and the names of all 174 signatories, are here. And here is an extract.
The bill is effectively a ban on asylum, extinguishing the right to seek refugee protection in the United Kingdom. It will put people seeking safety and a better life at risk of irreversible harm, with life and death consequences.
This bill attacks the very core of human rights, which is the fundamental belief that we all have human rights regardless of who we are or where we are from. Instead, it separates people into categories of ‘deserving’ and ‘undeserving’ of human rights. In stripping the most basic rights from people seeking safety and a better life, the bill dismantles human rights protections for all of us.
The bill deliberately and unacceptably excludes an entire category of people from the protections guaranteed under our domestic laws and international obligations.
It will almost certainly breach multiple international conventions and agreements, including the UN refugee convention, the European convention on human rights (ECHR), and the Council of Europe convention on action against trafficking in human beings (ECAT).
The government has acknowledged that it cannot guarantee the bill will be compatible with the ECHR, a legally binding instrument. The convention represents the rights and values that we hold dear, including the right to life, protection from slavery and torture, and the right to liberty, which are all threatened by this bill.
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