As part of post-Brexit plans, asylum seekers to EU countries will be removed and those waiting on their claims will be placed in “camps”.
The former immigration minister, Caroline Nokes who left the role in July 2019, expressed disapproval of minister Chris Philp and the current home secretary Priti Patel for their increasingly “brutal” approach to the asylum system which risks “whipping up an unpleasant reaction to some very vulnerable people”.
Ms Nokes said: “I don’t know where we go next from here. I think it’s a great shame that they aren’t being more compassionate towards some really vulnerable people.”
The Conservative MP for Romsey and Southampton North strongly condemned Home Office ministers` recent references to the legal representatives stand against deportations as “activist lawyers”, arguing that the legal system has an important role to play in the removal process. She condemned her predecessor, Priti Patel for her failure to make ongoing commitments to global refugee resettlement.
A Home Office spokesperson said: “We are fixing our broken asylum system to make it firm and fair – welcoming those most in need of protection via safe and legal routes while stopping abuse of the system.
“In the last five years, the UK has been amongst the top five resettlement countries worldwide, and has resettled more refugees from outside Europe than any other EU member state.”
Home Office`s plans to deem asylum claims from people who have travelled through a safe third country as “inadmissible” would likely boomerang and risk failure to follow due process, Ms Nokes said.
“The reality is that people will still arrive and claim asylum, but we’re trying to create two classes of asylum seeker: those whose application will be processed and those whose won’t. I don’t see that this in any way speeds anything up. In fact, arguably it slows things down,” she said.