Immigration and related issues, mainly in the United Kingdom.

Details of other pages are at the end of this page


Extracts in date order, except latest additions first. Updated 21 October 2016

Asylum – fraud, children, Calais
Farce of child migrant family checks: Home Office under fire for allowing youths into UK without being sure they have home to go to
Gordon Rayner, Steven Swinford and Robert Mendick
Daily Telegraph, 21 October 2016.

The Home Office is failing to verify whether child refugees have family members in the UK capable of taking care of them before they are brought here from Calais, the Telegraph has learnt.

Local authorities who are ultimately responsible for the children's welfare have complained that in some cases minors arrive in London without any proof that their relatives exist.

The job of checking that family members can provide the migrants with a suitable home is left to councils, who often have to place them in the care system after discovering they have no-one here who can take them in. ...

Having faced criticism earlier in the week that it was bussing in "child refugees" who appeared to be well into adulthood, the Home Office was accused of a "literal cover-up" yesterday as new arrivals who appeared older had blankets over their heads, while younger ones were not covered.

The number of refugees coming to the UK from Calais is expected to increase over the weekend ahead of the closure of the camp, scheduled for Monday. ...

It also emerged that the Home Office planned to introduce a pilot scheme four years ago to check the age of asylum-seekers using dental x-rays, only to scrap the scheme after being told they had not sought the relevant ethical approval. ...

Refugees arriving in the European Union are required to claim asylum in the first EU country they reach, but unaccompanied child refugees are granted an exemption if they wish to join relatives in another EU country, such as Britain.

All of those who have been brought to the UK Asylum Intake Unit in Croydon, south London this week have claimed to be minors with relatives living here, but the Local Government Authority says the Home Office is not managing the scheme effectively, meaning the youngsters are arriving with no guarantee that they have anywhere to go.

David Simmonds, chairman of the LGA's asylum, refugee and migration task group, said: "The Home Office are saying that they have carried out checks that family members exist but in fact local authorities are being asked to check out the relatives when the children arrive.

"Even if the child has named a relative here, they could be lying or the relative could be lying about their ability to look after them. They might say they have a spare bedroom but then it turns out that uncle is actually sharing a bedroom with five other people above a shop.

"If they can't look after the children they will go back into the system as unaccompanied asylum-seeking children.

"The local authority then becomes responsible for their care, accommodation and education until the age of 25, under the Leaving Care Act. That means the local authority also has to pay their university fees in full, because as foreigners they aren't entitled to student loans."

Mr Simmonds said the situation was placing a huge financial burden on local authorities at ports of entry, such as Hillingdon, where he sits as a councillor, and which includes Heathrow. ...

Lord Blencathra, in a letter to the Daily Telegraph, says today that he and fellow parliamentarians "assumed that we were talking about vulnerable little boys and girls under age 12-14" when the Government agreed to take them in. He said it was "vital" for the Home Office to introduce effective age tests to prevent border officials being "conned".
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Asylum – fraud, children
[X-ray of hand]
Dr Ben Timmis
Daily Telegraph, 21 October 2016.
[Letter to the Editor]

Skeletal maturity bears a close linear relationship to chronological age in developing children, and X-ray departments are routinely asked to assess "bone age" in children, by the simple, cheap and low-dose means of an X-ray of the hand. The image obtained is compared with standard published images, and a fairly accurate chronological age can thus be assessed.

The technique is applicable from the newborn to 18 years. Imaging the teeth is more difficult, involves a higher radiation dose, and is less reliable.
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Asylum – fraud, children
Are dental checks for 'child' migrants unethical? No, they're already being done by the Home Office
Ian Drury, Jason Groves and Sam Greenhill
Daily Mail, 21 October 2016.

Dental tests are already being used to assess the age of migrants, the Daily Mail can reveal.

The Home Office is under fire for ruling out tooth X-rays for youngsters coming to the UK from The Jungle camp in Calais.

Ministers claimed such checks were 'inaccurate, inappropriate and unethical'.

But last night it was revealed that UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI), the Home Office agency responsible for asylum claims, already accepts dental checks as proof of age, if provided by the migrant.

Guidelines said officials should give 'considerable weight' to reports from dental consultants who have assessed arrivals. ...

Citing guidance from the British Dental Association, the Home Office claimed dental X-rays were not accurate enough because they carried a margin of error of at least two years.

But UKVI documents titled Assessing Age For Asylum Applicants showed that officials used such tests to check on some asylum seekers who were trying to prove they were children.

Critics said this torpedoed the Home Office's claims that the tests were unethical, although Whitehall officials pointed out that the migrants involved were voluntarily taking the test to prove they were under 18. ...

A Home Office spokesman admitted that UKVI did recognise dental records as a valid indicator of age in some cases, but insisted it did not seek them proactively.
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Crime – Islam
Muslim civil war on streets of Britain: Islam divide carries 'death warrant', says expert
Laura Mowat
Daily Express, 21 October 2016.

Muslim divide has caused civil war on the streets of Britain, according to the chief executive of a counter-extremism think tank.

The chief executive of the Quiliam Foundation, Haras Rafiq, has claimed that civil war has spread onto the UK's streets. ...

He said: "The last three killings of Muslims to be picked up by the media have been carried out by those who have decided that their victims 'are not Muslim enough'."

Mr Rafiq said that the Salafi version of Islam excommunicates Muslims who are not the same as them and under Sharia law, this means that these people can be killed. ...

The chief executive of the think tank said that "not being the right kind of Muslim now carries a potential death warrant on our streets."
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Employment – nurses
Four in 10 new nurses are from overseas, amid warnings NHS faces 'perfect storm' post-Brexit
Laura Donnelly
Daily Telegraph, 21 October 2016.

Four in ten new nurses have come from overseas – the highest level in more than a decade, according to a new report warning of a "perfect storm" about to hit the NHS.

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) said hospitals are on the brink of a major staffing crisis.

Half of British nurses could retire within a decade, while services are increasingly reliant on foreign workers, who could leave post-Brexit, its report says.

Last year, 11,261 nurses who registered to work in the UK came from overseas – a rise from 8,183 the previous year, official statistics show.

In total, four in 10 of last year's entrants trained abroad, with the vast majority coming from within the EU. Six years ago, overseas nurses made up just one in 10 new entrants. ...

The union has previously warned that the NHS was spending "ludicrous" sums poaching foreign nurses while rejecting two thirds of British applicants for training.
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Immigration abroad – crime, France
Anger among French police grows as Hollande vows talks
The Local [France], 21 October 2016.

President François Hollande has vowed to meet police union leaders after a fourth night of unprecedented protests in Paris and across the country.

Hundreds of police took to the streets of Paris for a fourth night of demonstrations calling for reinforcements and stiffer penalties following a string of attacks on officers.

Protests also took place in other French cities on Thursday night despite the government's efforts to contain growing anger among police as the issue of safety of law enforcement officers enters the presidential race. ...

With security at its highest possible level, officers have been up in arms over attacks on police during patrols in tough suburbs and during street demonstrations.
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Asylum – fraud, children, Calais
Home Office admits checks on 'child refugees' in Calais are limited and hampered by French law
Gordon Rayner
Daily Telegraph, 20 October 2016.

The Home Office has admitted it carries out only limited checks on the ages and identities of "child refugees" in Calais before they are allowed into the UK.

Dozens of supposed unaccompanied minors have been brought to Britain this week from the so-called "Jungle" camp in the French port, but some appear to be well into adulthood, with stubble and even crow's feet around their eyes.

It has led to calls for more rigorous checks to be carried out, such as dental examinations, which are used in some other countries to check applicants' ages. The Home Office dismissed the idea out of hand, insisting it already had rigorous procedures in place in Calais.

But it emerged that accepted guidelines on determining asylum seekers' ages, known as the Merton test, are not followed until applicants arrive in the UK, nor can they be fingerprinted in France because it contravenes French law.

Because so many applicants have no documentation to prove their age, Home Office workers who interview them in Calais alongside their French counterparts have to rely on physical appearance and demeanour to decide how old they think they are.

It means that adult men who should have claimed asylum in other EU countries could reach Britain before they are found to be lying about their age.

Once applicants arrive in the UK, they are fingerprinted and re-interviewed by the Home Office, and may then face a Merton test from the local authority where they intend to live, which involves lengthy questions about the applicant's activities during the previous few years. The interviewers must also "ask questions designed to test the applicant's credibility".

Two-thirds of child refugees screened by the Home Office to the year September 2015 were later found to be adults.

Afghan refugees at the Jungle told The Daily Telegraph it was commonplace for young men desperate to enter the UK to lie about their age.

Bashir Ahmad, from Spin Boldak, south of Kandahar, said: "People are lying about their ages. This is not good when there are real children here. I am 26, I tell everyone the truth."

Looking at pictures of some of those who had arrived in Britain, Mr Ahmad said: "He looks 25, he looks 30, he looks maybe 40."

The Conservative MP David Davies said the UK "should not be naïve" about refugees pretending to be minors to get into the UK. ...

He said dental checks should be introduced to determine a migrant's true age, dismissing suggestions it would be intrusive or immoral and claiming they are used by 18 other countries. ...

The Home Office said it would not be introducing dental checks, citing the British Dental Association's assessment that they would be "inaccurate, inappropriate and unethical".
[Site link]

Asylum – fraud, children, Calais
Child refugee checks in Calais have descended into CHAOS, admits migrant charity chief
Charlie Bayliss
Daily Express, 20 October 2016.

The process of separating legitimate child refugees from adults trying to con British border controls has "descended into chaos", a leading migrant charity worker has admitted. ...

The row over new age of the migrants has grown increasingly bitter after Home Office officials admitted that two-thirds of "child" refugees questioned about their age last year were revealed to be adults.

Beth Gardiner-Smith – from British charity Citizens UK, which oversees the safe passage of child refugees into Britain – told Newsnight the process has become a "bit of a muddle" and "shambolic".

She added: "In the camp, you've had people with megaphones, walking around calling for children to come forward and register themselves on separate lists [of UK charities seeking to help them]." ...

Ms Gardiner-Smith said there are "discrepancies" between the lists the Home Office and her charity has obtained.
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Asylum – fraud, children, Calais
Man on Yesterday's Sun Front Page is NOT an Interpreter
Media Guido, 20 October 2016.

Yesterday a rumour went round Twitter virtue signallers that a man the Sun reported is a supposed child refugee is in fact a Home Office interpreter. It was too good for the tabloid-bashers to resist, soon hundreds of people had tweeted it without checking, as if it was fact. Including some very famous types like Gary Lineker, David Schneider and Caroline Criado Perez. Guido has asked the Home Office, who confirm the man in question is NOT an interpreter. They say they do not comment on minors, all but confirming he is a refugee claiming to be a child. As reported by the Sun.
[Site link]

Asylum – fraud, children, Calais
Ex-Home Secretary Jack Straw Backs Dental Checks On Calais Child Refugees
Steven Hopkins
The Huffington Post, 20 October 2016.

Dental tests to determine the age of child refugees from the Calais "Jungle" camp have been backed by Labour former home secretary Jack Straw.

Calls from Tory MP David Davies to perform such procedures to ensure Britain's "hospitality is not being abused" by refugees who "don't look like children" provoked a firestorm of backlash.

Straw insisted he would not have ruled out the move when he ran the Home Office as he insisted that the asylum effort would be undermined if it turned out people had been lying about their age in order to gain entry to Britain.

"Officials made a judgment, we have to accept that judgment, but if there is a case for dental checks, I would certainly not as home secretary have ruled that out," he said. ...

"So having tests, providing they are not too intrusive and invasive, is actually a sensible thing to do for everyone concerned. ...

"Part of the problem with the issue of whether they are children is you have got to test their age because you will understandably always get quite a lot of people who, knowing that it's easier to get in because they are younger, will pretend they are under 18 when they are not.

"Some of those who are at Calais are genuine refugees but an awful lot are economic migrants," Straw told the Daily Mail. ...

Campaigners including Citizens UK, which said it has reunited 60 children from Calais with relatives in Britain since March, claim to have identified hundreds of children in the camp who have a right to come to the UK - either because they have family ties here under the so-called Dublin regulations, or through the Dubs amendment.
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Asylum – fraud, children
How 'child' migrants are straining the care system - and British children are paying the price
Harriet Sergeant
Daily Mail, 20 October 2016.

Yesterday, I talked to a worker in a residential home in Kent for children in care. Speaking on condition of anonymity, she told me that half of the children in care there are unaccompanied asylum-seeking children.

... Yet she told me that in her estimation more than half the migrants are not children at all, but in their 20s.

'They can be quite frightening at times,' she said. 'They are aggressive and have an attitude problem. Many have no respect for women because of their culture.

'No one is giving consideration to the risks they pose, not just to staff but to the other children in the home. Because they are older, they have a lot of influence on the youngsters, who are very vulnerable. They introduce the children to alcohol and get them into crime like street robberies. It is a serious problem, which those in authority are not tackling.' ...

According to Eurostat, in 2015 3,045 unaccompanied minors claimed asylum here, of whom 91 per cent were male and only 8 per cent were under 14. ...

Other councils are seeing dizzying rises. A Freedom of Information request by Community Care Magazine revealed numbers of unaccompanied children being looked after by local authorities, excluding Kent, increased by an average of 55 per cent from 2013-14 to 2014-15. ...

Many of the youngsters whose families pay for them to come here – who may well be in their 20s but claim to be teenagers – are sent on flights into Britain and are instructed to say they are orphans so they are taken into care.

As one immigration officer with 20 years' experience explained to me: 'Ninety per cent of them are not orphans. Their coming here is very well worked out. Their families have paid the people-traffickers to bring them here,' he added. 'The intention is for the families to follow shortly after. For the most part, they are not fleeing for their lives.

'For years, we have had adult Pakistani males arriving in this country maintaining they are Afghan teenagers. They claim to be 13 or 14 but they are clearly over 20, with good facial hair.' ...

The immigration officer explained that thorough age-checks no longer take place at British airports.

'There was a time,' he said, 'when we had a doctor stationed at the port health office in the airport, who could make an age-assessment by looking at the claimant's teeth and face.'

But such doctors no longer exist. 'They were removed a few years ago, just as the increasing numbers of asylum kids kicked off,' he added.

'Now we just call a social worker, but there is nothing they can do [in terms of deciding what to do] until the young person has had a scientific age-assessment.' And, inevitably, that takes time to organise. So, instead of the migrant being detected as 'over-age' from the point they arrive in Britain, the social worker will place the 'child' with a temporary foster family or a care home. 'They abscond almost immediately, often within the hour,' said the immigration officer.

Sometimes, the migrants who say they are teenagers are accompanied by their traffickers on the flight. These men charge a high price for the service.

The immigration officer knows many of them by sight. They are often young men who mysteriously are able to travel ten times a year from Britain to Dubai and Africa. But since they have British or EU passports, immigration officials can do nothing about them.
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Population pressure – housing
London borough council admits social house waiting time has hit 50 YEARS
David Maddox
Daily Express, 20 October 2016.

A council chief in London's poorest borough has admitted that the waiting time for social housing is now 50 years in the latest evidence that immigration levels have got out of control.

In a BBC documentary - No Place to Call Home - broadcast today, Maureen Worby, the Labour councillor in charge of social care for Barking and Dagenham, told local people asking about council housing: "Do you know what – it's not a 10-year wait, it's a 50-year wait."

The shocking admission appears to be an indictment of open door immigration policies which has seen areas like Barking and Dagenham take the brunt of waves of immigrants.

Official figures show that the population of the borough is expected to be 223,185 up 36 per cent from 165,610.

The huge increase in population comes despite the British white population falling by 30 per cent while the black African population rose 20,000 between 2001 and 2011 and "other [non-British] white" by about 10,000.
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Crime – deportation
Jamaican drug-dealing killer CANNOT be thrown out of the country because his parents aren't married and it would violate his human rights say judges
Stephanie Linning
MailOnline, 20 October 2016.

A drug-dealing killer who was jailed for manslaughter cannot be deported as it would violate his human rights, the Supreme Court ruled.

Eric Johnson was sentenced to nine years in prison for killing David Williams, 30, by hitting him with a piece of wood and stabbing him in his flat in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, in 2007.

Then Home Secretary Theresa May said he should be deported to Jamaica, where he was born to a British father and Jamaican mother out of wedlock.

Because he was illegitimate he was not entitled automatically to become a British citizen on birth and then did not apply before he was 18.

Johnson argued he should not be deported as it would amount to discrimination.

He lost his case in the Court of Appeal earlier this year but secured a victory at the Supreme Court today.

Five judges said that to remove Johnson would be to punish him for 'the accident of his birth outside of wedlock' as he would have been entitled to British citizenship if his parents had been married. ...

He could not apply for citizenship in his own right at the age of 16 as he had run up a string of convictions and was therefore not considered to be of 'good character'. ...

Upholding Johnson's appeal, Lady Hale ruled deporting him simply because of the accident of his birth outside wedlock would be unlawfully discriminatory.

Johnson was in no way responsible for his parents' unmarried status and there could be 'no justification' for deporting him.

The requirement that a person in his position must also be of good character to qualify for citizenship was also 'incompatible' with human rights, she said.
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Asylum – children, adults
Two-thirds of child refugees screened by officials found to be adults, Home Office figures show
Peter Dominiczak and Steven Swinford
Daily Telegraph, 19 October 2016.

Nearly two-thirds of "child" refugees who officials questioned about their real age were found to be adults, Home Office documents show.

Figures show that in the year to September 2015, 65 per cent of the child refugees who had their age disputed were found to be over 18.

It comes after Conservative MPs raised questions about the ages of 14 refugees who were brought to the UK this week from the "Jungle" migrant camp in Calais. ...

In the year ending September 2015, 590 asylum applicants had their age disputed and of those, 574 recorded as having an age assessment.

Of the 574 refugees checked, 371 were found to be adults.

Since 2006 there have been 11,121 age disputes. Of those, 4,828 were found to have been adults.
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Terrorism – Islam, jihadists
Europe should prepare for fresh wave of Isil jihadists fleeing Mosul as Iraqi army moves in, warns EU
Josie Ensor
Daily Telegraph, 19 October 2016.

Europe must prepare for a fresh influx of Isil jihadists fleeing Mosul as the army moves in on their last Iraqi stronghold, the EU's security commissioner has warned.

"The retaking of the IS's northern Iraq territory, Mosul, may lead to the return to Europe of violent IS fighters," Julian King said. 'This is a very serious threat and we must be prepared to face it."

Some 2,500 EU nationals are currently fighting alongside Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil), he added, and that if even a handful return it would pose a "serious threat that we must prepare ourselves for". ...

Analysts say that even with the loss of its last-remaining stronghold in Iraq, it will not mark the end of the group and that its loss of its so-called caliphate could see devastating consequences for the West.

The group is "entering a new phase," said Chris Phillips, managing director of counter-terrorism consultancy Ippso, adding that as the group loses its "caliphate", "it would force them into more guerrilla or terrorist actions".

With the retaking of Mosul, "I think we will see a growth of terrorist attacks across North Africa and the West," he said, adding that fighters could take cover in the routes used by refugees to slip in.
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Multiculturalism – anti-Semitism
The best cure for anti-Semitism in the UK is to stop pretending we're all guilty of it
Philip Johnston
Daily Telegraph, 19 October 2016.

The Commons Home Affairs select committee has just produced a report entitled "Anti-Semitism in the UK", ... ...

We have always had a hard-core of anti-Semites in this country, even after the mass murder of Jews in Europe showed the horrific consequences of such attitudes. But reading the select committee report, the question that jumped out was: why has it got worse in recent years? And the only answer that makes any sense is immigration.

The groups most likely to hold anti-Semitic views are Muslims and eastern Europeans, where the religious and cultural roots lie deep. A survey cited in the report says that a significantly higher proportion of Muslims endorsed anti-Semitic statements than the rest of the country. The report's conclusion, therefore, that "there is a real risk the UK is moving in the wrong direction on anti-Semitism" needs to be placed in context.

Without even seeing the irony, MPs say this "should be a wake-up call for those who value the UK's proud multicultural democracy". Yet it is precisely our past indulgence of multiculturalist nostrums that allowed the prejudiced views of one religious minority against another to flourish. ...

Despite evidence of a particular problem within the Muslim community, the committee simply sidesteps the implications. Why? Perhaps it is too difficult to come to terms with the fact that anti-Semitism is being perpetrated by another minority community that is also subject to prejudice, or perceives itself to be.
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Diversity – classical music, BBC
Classical music must tackle diversity or die
Hannah Furness
Daily Telegraph, 19 October 2016.

Classical music must do more to address the diversity of its composers or it will become "irrelevant", the controller of BBC Radio 3 will warn today.

Alan Davey will say there has been too much talk and not enough action to tackle the lack of diversity in the genre, and that more black and ethnic minority voices deserve to be heard.

Speaking at a BBC-led conference at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, he will demand the sector tackles the "big issues" to keep it alive for a new generation. ...

The speeches at the Diversity and Inclusion in Composition conference are due to be matched by a week of programming on Radio 3.
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Immigration abroad – multiculturalism, languages, USA
Polyglot USA: One in five Americans now speak a language other than English at home - and Arabic is the fastest growing language
Daily Mail, 19 October 2016.

A record amount of Americans now speak a language other than English at home, with dramatic increases in the number of Arabic speakers.

According to data from the U.S. Census Bureau's 2015 American Community Survey, analyzed by the Center for Immigration Studies, there are now 64.7 million Americans over the age of five who speak at least one language other than English. That's one in five Americans.

The amount is staggering compared to 1990, when less than half that amount (31.8 million Americans) reported speaking a second language. And the number of foreign language speaking Americans today is triple the number back in 1980.

The percentage of second-language speakers is even higher among today's youth. According to the census data, it's closer to one in four public school students who are at least bi-lingual in the U.S. ...

Between 2010 and 2015, the languages that saw the largest percentage increase in speakers included Arabic (up 34 percent); Hindi, an Indian language (up 33 percent); Urdu, the national language of Pakistan (up 24 percent); Chinese (up 19 percent); French Creole, spoken in Haiti (up 16 percent); Gujarati, another Indian language (up 14 percent); and Persian, the national language of Iran (up 13 percent).

When it comes to total speakers however, Spanish continues to reign supreme with now more than 40 million American speakers. That's up 3.1 million from 2010.

The other most popular second languages in the U.S. include Chinese (3 million), Tagalog (1.7 million), and French (1.26 million). ...

Among these second-language speakers, 44 percent were born in the United States. However, 40 percent reported that they spoke English 'less than very well'.
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Immigration abroad – illegal immigration, USA
Illegal immigration soars by 24% with more than 400,000 people stopped at the border while trying to enter the US
Afp and Chris Summers
Daily Mail, 19 October 2016.

More than 408,000 illegal immigrants were detained on the Mexican border last year - up from about 331,000 - but the number of Mexicans trying to get into the U.S. has gone down.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said the 24 percent rise was due to the increasing number of Central Americans fleeing poverty and violence in Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador. ...

The rise in numbers on the border in 2015 followed a fall in the previous year. ...

The number of unaccompanied children illegally entering the United States across the border also jumped by 49 percent.

The DHS said 56,692 children traveled without adults, compared with 39,970 the previous year.
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Immigration abroad – refugees, Christians, Muslims, Germany
Christians Face 'Unbearable' Situation in German Refugee Camps; Official Admits 'Underestimating Role of Religion'
Hazel Torres
Christian Today, 19 October 2016.

An apparently contrite Germany has admitted a grievous mistake, resulting in an "unbearable" situation for Christian refugees in the country.

"We have underestimated the role of religion," said Germany's Home Secretary, Thomas de Maizière, at a conference last month, World Watch Monitor reported. He was referring to the "integration experiment" approved by Chancellor Angela Merkel where Christian and Muslim refugees were "mixed" in refugee centres.

Thomas said the "experiment" was agreed upon based on the "widespread belief" in Germany that the importance of religion and faith has decreased globally. He said that presumption proved to be wrong.

Now, a group of German NGOs, led by Open Doors Germany, is calling on the German government to end this experiment. ...

Two surveys conducted by the German NGOs among asylum-seekers in German refugee centres this year detailed the minorities' accounts of intimidation by Muslim refugees, according to World Watch Monitor.

The surveys showed that 743 Christian refugees reported various acts of intimidation. Of this number, 617 of them (83 percent) reported multiple assaults; 314 (42 percent) death threats; 416 (56 percent) violent assaults; and 44 (6 percent) sexual assaults.

Ninety-one percent (674) of the Christian respondents said the assaults were committed by Muslim refugees, 28 percent (205) by Muslim guards and 34 percent (254) by "other parties."

The German NGOs' report says the testimonies of the refugees clearly show that the assaults are religiously motivated and that such attacks on minority refugees in shelters occur all over Germany.
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Politics – Conservative Party
WHAT ARE EU WAITING FOR? Cabinet row erupts as ministers try to delay introduction of tough new immigration system until 2024
Tom Newton Dunn
The Sun, 18 October 2016.

A fresh Cabinet row has erupted over a bid to delay the full introduction of Britain's tough new immigration system until as late as 2024.

Home Secretary Amber Rudd has drawn up plans for a new visa-based system that will block unskilled workers from the EU.

But Ms Rudd is allying with Chancellor Philip Hammond to also insist it could only be brought in gradually.

The "soft Brexit" duo fear a sudden end to British businesses' access to cheap new foreign workers could deliver a hammer blow to the economy.

Instead, the Chancellor and Home Secretary are pushing for a gradual transition into the new visa-based system – debated by the Cabinet's Brexit sub-committee last week – that could last as long as five years. ...

Britain will not leave the EU until 2019 at the earliest, meaning the country faces eight more years in total of a big influx from Eastern Europe.

But the proposal has angered prominent Leave campaigners in the Cabinet, such as Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and Development Secretary Priti Patel, who are insisting on delivering their referendum pledge to slash numbers as soon as possible.

Immigration campaigners also spoke out in anger at the plan and instead insisted firms should start preparing for work force changes now.

Migration Watch UK chairman Lord Green: "A transition period is completely unnecessary.

"It's not as if all three million EU workers already here are going to disappear in a puff of smoke.

"There numbers will gradually decline, thus allowing time for employers here to make the necessary changes.

"For a start, they could increase the pay and conditions for British workers in these low paid occupations."

Migration Watch UK is also releasing a paper today calling on farmers to look at boosting their wages so they can employ some of the 1.6 million Brits out of work instead of migrants.
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Crime – child sexual abuse
Rotherham: eight men convicted of sexually exploiting teenage girls
Helen Pidd
The Guardian, 18 October 2016.

Eight men have been found guilty of sexually exploiting teenage girls in Rotherham.

The men, who include two brothers and four cousins, all raped or indecently assaulted the same girl when she was as young as 13, a jury at Sheffield crown court found on Monday. Some of them had abused two other girls as far back as 1999, the jury ruled.

The main complainant, who is now 27 and a campaigner against child sexual exploitation, said her abusers threatened to "gang-rape" her mother if she did not submit to their sexual abuse, which took place largely in an alley behind a branch of Boots in Rotherham town centre, in a local park and in bushes near a museum.

Her family were so afraid of her alleged abusers that they moved to Spain after their complaints to the police, social services, their MP and the home secretary went unresolved, the court heard.

The jury believed her when she said that Sageer Hussain, 30 – who is of British Pakistani origin, along with all but one of the other men in the dock – first raped her behind Boots when she was 13 and later called her a "white slag" when she tried and failed to stop him. ...

His older brother, Basharat Hussain, 40, was found guilty of indecently assaulting her. Six further men, including two cousins of the Hussain brothers, were found guilty of abusing her or helping others to do so.

After the majority verdicts were returned in this trial on Monday, the National Crime Agency (NCA) said it was separately investigating more than 11,100 lines of inquiry relating to non-familial child sexual exploitation in Rotherham between 1997 and 2003.

So far 38 people have been designated "suspects" with many more under investigation, according to the NCA, which is carrying out the independent investigation at the request of the chief constable of South Yorkshire police.

NCA staff have been talking to 133 victims and survivors and have so far recorded 163 crimes in relation to their experiences. They have identified 17 distinct investigations under the overall inquiry. ...

The operation began after the publication in August 2014 of the Jay report, which said at least 1,400 children in Rotherham had been sexually exploited over a 16-year period from 1997.
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Asylum – children, Calais
How old are they REALLY? Concern as 'hulking' all-male refugee children arrive from Calais
Nick Gutteridge and Giles Sheldrick
Daily Express, 18 October 2016.

Questions have been raised over the real ages of refugee children arriving in Britain from Calais after it emerged that immigration officials have no way of verifying how old they are.

Tory MPs have expressed concern that the UK's hospitality may be being abused after pictures of the first group of "hulking", all-male teenagers to cross the Channel were published yesterday.

Fourteen youngsters, who officials insist are between the ages of 14 and 17, arrived in the UK from the infamous Jungle camp as part of a fast-track scheme to get children out before it is demolished. ...

Home Office mandarins insisted they have "verified" the ages of all of the refugees who arrived yesterday, saying that every single one of them was aged between 14 and 17.

However, many asylum seekers living in Calais do not have identity papers. Some lost them, but others deliberately destroy their passports and birth certificates to conceal their real ages and nationalities and improve their chances of being granted asylum.

In instances where refuges have no official documentation, Home Office protocol states that a screening officer can certify them as a child based on their "physical appearance" or "demeanour".

Whitehall documents state that refugees "should be treated as an adult if their physical appearance/demeanour very strongly suggests that they are significantly over 18 years of age".

However, the guidelines also say that "all other applicants should be afforded the benefit of the doubt and treated as children".
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – birth rate, Germany
Germany's birthrate hits 33-year high after arrival of 900,000 refugees
Harriet Agerholm
Independent, 18 October 2016.

An influx of refugees last year helped boost Germany's birthrate to its highest level in 33 years, according to data released by the country's Federal Statistics Office. ...

Almost 900,000 refugees sought asylum in Germany in 2015, with some 70 per cent of them Muslim, according to Reuters. Muslim families tend to be larger than secular European-born citizens – one reason why the influx of refugees has helped increase the average number of children.

Stephan Sievert, Head of the Department for Migration and Labour market at the Berlin Institute for Population and Development told The Independent the increased rate was promising for the German economy. ...

He added that the "large majority" of the rise was driven by births to foreign-born women.
[Site link]

Crime – child sexual abuse
Muslim Rape Gang Victim Talks to Breitbart: Girls Still Targeted Because Police Refuse to Act
Donna Rachel Edmunds
Breitbart, 18 October 2016.

Muslim men who groomed and violently abused young girls in a quiet English town have been left to carry on raping girls, despite being named to the police, one of their victims has told Breitbart London.

Kaitlyn (not her real name) suffered years of abuse at the hands of hundreds of men in her home town, and in locations across the UK. Yet despite handing a list of more than 80 names to the police for investigation, her attackers are still working as taxi drivers, businessmen, and even on the local council. And she says they are still abusing young vulnerable girls in her town.

Kaitlyn's ordeal began when she was thirteen when an "olive skinned" man came to her house telling her he was going to take photos for a modelling portfolio. ...

Over the next decade Kaitlyn was systematically abused by hundreds of men who would line up to await their turn with her. On average, she says, she would be raped by eight at a time, one after the other.

"My mum called the police when I was 15. I didn't tell her, she found out another way. This big tall black officer [came to the house]; he was pacing the room. He was really impatient."

Rather than take the complaint seriously, the officer told Kaitlyn's mother that she was a known prostitute. "He told my mum to leave me to it, that I would stop when I'm ready. And he told me that they couldn't offer protection if I gave a statement." ...

As none of her abusers ever used protection she has contracted numerous STDs and has been pregnant eleven times. Many of the pregnancies ended in abortion, but she has two young daughters, both fathered by her abusers.
[Site link]

Politics – Labour Party
The left's reasons for ditching freedom of movement are profoundly wrong
Michael Chessum
New Statesman, 17 October 2016.

The idea that mainstream politics has failed to talk enough about immigration has become an idea so entrenched in British political life that it is almost impossible to challenge. ...

Now, the left is a growing force in British politics. The Labour leadership is committed to massive public investment. Everything should be different. So what is alarming is that, post-referendum, the left in general seems to be squeamish about the idea of defending free movement. /.../ Even on the Labour left, unlikely people can be found saying that freedom of movement is simply part of a wider deregulatory globalisation that "hasn't worked" for many people in Britain. ...

In terms of the principle, free movement of people ought to be a no brainer for entire progressive political spectrum – far beyond the radical left for whom it is a first step to a borderless world. ...

The temptation for Labour to abandon free movement of people as a goal in the Brexit negotiations is underpinned by a sense of realism which is profoundly misplaced. To win elections, Labour must redefine the immigration debate, not simply feed it. ...

Ultimately, the dilemma being posed by Brexit is about the future of the left. One path leads to a rehashed version of the post-war social democratic settlement. The other is difficult – it will require the creation of a whole new way of talking about migration, identity and international solidarity – but it is the only path that will allow the left to grasp and define a process of globalisation which is, at present, tearing both it, and the communities it once represented, apart.
[Site link]

Racism – xenophobia, bigotry
Why Is Xenophobia Still An Acceptable Form Of Bigotry?
Beth Leslie
The Huffington Post, 17 October 2016.

It is a quirk of democracy that the achievement of power often diminishes your ability to speak freely. Luckily I am neither famous nor dependent on the votes of those who disagree with me, and so I can say what Gordon Brown could not: if you blame your inability to access services on an influx of Eastern Europeans, you are a bigot. ...

Such statements should be self-evident, yet the protection - and therefore validation - of bigoted views is worryingly in vogue. If you are a British Brexiteer harping on about 'taking back control' of my country from iniquitous immigrants and venal Europeans then Theresa May is right to say that I "find your patriotism distasteful, your concerns about immigration parochial, your views about crime illiberal". But her decision to designate liberal voices like mine as the villain in this exchange is heart-breaking.

Like all good persecutors, the anti-immigration brigade has developed a victim complex. It centres around accusations of racism, which they term unfair for a group who care not about the colour of your skin so much as the colour of your passport. They are technically correct - prejudice against people from a different country is called xenophobia, not racism. But now we've got our semantics straightened out, let's move onto Prejudice 101: discrimination against any social group is morally wrong. So why are xenophobes allowed to vent their prejudice freely, with support from media and politicians alike?

Common answer: it's not prejudice, it's a justifiable concern for lack of space / resources / jobs. Except that when you choose to allocate assets based on the assumption that one social group is more deserving than another, that is prejudice. Being born on a particular patch of land is as much of a choice as being born with a particular skin colour or a particular set of genitals. Assuming that any of these accidents of birth should entitle you to priority over another in the sharing out of the world's wealth is the definition of arrogant selfishness.

To be clear, I am advocating free-market policies, not socialist ones. I am not suggesting that those born in a rich country should have their luck stripped from them. What I am saying is that if you agitate for laws and policies specifically aimed at stopping a certain category of people from even attempting to achieve the same things you covet - a job, a house, a life in Britain - then that is unjustifiable and immoral. ...

Instead, I find myself fielding trite complaints about the disintegration of British culture (although, oddly, never in regards to American films, German cars, or Indian food). Let's be clear: the proportion of our country who are non-British is a mere 8.7%. Within that, a huge diversity of different cultures is represented. The idea that any single group would have the numbers or the influence to fundamentally reshape British culture is ludicrous scaremongering.

... If you think Britain should be for the British alone then I for one will tell you straight: you are selfish, you are bigoted, and you are wrong.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Denmark, European Union
Denmark's had it with Brussels: Borders will REMAIN until EU 'gets control over crisis'
Lizzie Stromme
Daily Express, 17 October 2016.

Denmark's borders will remain CLOSED until the European Union can reestablish control over the migrant crisis and make the continent safe again, a minister has declared.

Immigration and integration minister, Inger Støjberg, has announced she is set to tell the EU that Denmark will continue the internal border checks, despite being a member of the Schengen Zone. ...

Ms Støjberg said Denmark's position would be presented to the EU in a joint letter from other Schengen countries which have also implemented temporary checks.

The politician said: "We are working to get sent a joint letter.

"It will say we want an extension of border controls on the basis that there is no control of the external borders and that there are still unregistered refugees and migrants in Europe.

"And to a great extent, the terrorist threat is real and so we must control who comes to Europe."

Ms Støjberg added: "I consider it a necessity that we extend now. I can only say that we must have the internal border as long as needed."

European Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoaulos, who will decide whether or not Denmark will be granted an extension, said Denmark would only obtain the continued control if it was "justified".
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – crime, Germany
Sex Attacks, Brawling, Theft: Far Left Youth Club Admits Migrant Outreach Failed
Virginia Hale
Breitbart, 17 October 2016.

A far-left political club and youth centre in Leipzig has issued a statement admitting its outreach efforts with migrants resulted in a huge increase in sex attacks, brawling, and theft.

Women began avoiding dance nights as a result, nightclub Conne Island revealed in their statement which condemns the tendency on the left to trivialise migrant sex attacks on the basis that they are a "marginalised" group. ...

To help migrants integrate, Conne Island organised skateboarding and bicycling workshops along with German lessons to "promote integration". As a further encouragement to participate, the group set a fee of just 50 cents for migrants to visit the club.

The number of sex attacks and violent confrontations at dance nights soared as a result of the decision. Consequently, female guests began to avoid the club. ...

One security guard reported that whenever they tried to throw migrants out, left-wing activists would yell at door staff, calling them racist. Foreign troublemakers then took to accusing security of racism each time they were challenged.

Conne Island admits: "It's a very difficult situation for us to express all of this because we don't want to play into the hands of the Alternative for Germany and Christian Democratic Union party's racism.

"However, the situation is so tense and stressful for many victims and also Conne Island staff that avoiding talking about the facts no longer seems appropriate."

Arguing there "should be no double standards" when it comes to sexism, homophobia, and anti-Semitism, the statement condemns the tendency of left-wing activists to excuse, conceal or trivialise migrants' bad behaviour.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – deportation, Europe
Europe pressing harder on countries to take back deported migrants
Michael Birnbaum and Annabell Van den Berghe
Washington Post, 17 October 2016.

As Europe reels from a historic rush of migrants, leaders are searching for new ways to reverse the flow by stepping up deportations.

The quest led to a deal with Afghanistan that envisions a whole new terminal at the Kabul airport to take deportees. It sent German Chancellor Angela Merkel last week on a whistle-stop tour of African capitals, where she promised an influx of euros in exchange for willingness to take back migrants. And it resulted in an agreement with Turkey that critics say means European nations are biting their tongues about Ankara's human rights abuses to halt the flow of refugees to Greece. ...

"We had to find ways to stop illegal migration," Merkel said during a trip to Ethiopia, where she balanced criticisms of a fresh government crackdown on the opposition with bargaining over doing more to stop migrant flows to Europe. "That is why we said, 'We must speak to Turkey,' because many of these people came from there. We also have to speak with African countries to bring about legality."
[Site link]

Illegal immigration – repatriation
Illegal immigrants given £2,000 to leave as UK faces colossal migrant crisis
Siobhan McFadyen
Sunday Express, 16 October 2016.

The UK Government is giving £2,000 of taxpayers' cash to illegal immigrants to get them to leave the country amid the publishing of new figures which show the UK border's are at crisis point.

Prime Minister Theresa May, who was responsible for immigration until she assumed responsibility for running the country, is facing mounting pressure to bring the situation under control as it's revealed asylum claims are at their highest level in 12 years.

Each day immigration officials are forced to deal with queues of thousands of people desperate to secure their status in the country.

And to tackle it the Home Office has confirmed illegal immigrants are now being offered £2,000 each to leave as well as a flight home paid for by British taxpayers.

The Government confirmed they have made "assisted return" payments to a total of 529 people since they developed the strategy which was implemented in January of this year.

They say the money is offered on a case-by-case basis, up to a maximum value of £2,000 per person.

The assistance, the Government says, is to help those returning to "find somewhere to live, find a job or start a business in their home country".

According to the latest figures there's been a 41 per cent jump in the amount of asylum claims in the past year with people flooding in from Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Eritrea, Afghanistan and Syria respectively. ...

Most applications for asylum are made by people already in the country who have made it past border control, the Government has confirmed.

And they say 90 per cent of applications in the year ending June 2016 were claimed after they'd arrived in Britain, rather than immediately on arrival in the UK at a port.

In addition there has been a 17 per cent increase in family visas meaning a further 47,000 non-EU nationals immigrated long-term to the UK to accompany or join others after they were granted leave to remain.

While in the year ending March 2016, the Office for National Statistics estimates there were 71,000 non-EU long-term immigrants for work, an increase of nine per cent or 6,000 compared with the previous 12 months.
[Site link]

Employment – visas
Group that claimed Jihadi John 'wouldn't hurt a fly' licensed to bring foreign workers into UK
Gethin Chamberlain
Sunday Mirror, 16 October 2016.

The group that defended Isis terrorist Jihadi John and a religious cult have been licensed by the Home Office to bring foreign workers into the UK.

Advocacy group Cage and notorious sect the Moonies are among thousands of organisations still licensed to sponsor UK visas, despite Tory pledges to crack down on immigration.

The official register of licensed companies also includes male strippers, a closed Chinese takeaway, an immigration advice company that went out of business last year and a non-existent polo team. ...

But a Sunday Mirror investigation casts doubt on the Home Office's own vetting procedure for organisations that have brought thousands of foreign nationals into the UK since the Conservatives came to power in 2010.

The list of 30,000 companies licensed to bring in overseas workers to fill jobs includes many of Britain's biggest businesses, along with Conservative Party HQ and some of the largest government departments.

It is intended to guarantee that only carefully screened organisations can sponsor visas for foreign nationals. But the Sunday Mirror investigation found glaring holes in the vetting process.

The list includes Cage, which hit the headlines last year when its spokesman Asim Qureshi claimed Isis murderer Mohammed Emwazi 'wouldn't hurt a fly'.

"He was such a beautiful young man, the most humble young person that I knew," Qureshi said in an interview.

Boris Johnson described the group as "apologists for terror" and Philip Hammond accused it of carrying a "huge burden of responsibility" for the actions of terrorists.

Yet at the time it was registered as a sponsor for work visas and it remains on the official register.

The most striking recent addition to the list of registered visa sponsors is the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification, which is another name for the Unification Church - better known as the Moonies. ...

The cult was best known for bringing together complete strangers from different countries and marrying them at huge mass weddings to create "pure" families.

Despite this track record, it was added to the official Home Office register of visa sponsors within the last 12 months and can sponsor renewable one year visas for voluntary workers.

Foreign citizens granted visas under the scheme can bring their families with them and extend their stay once in the UK.

Since the Conservatives came to power in 2010 - and Theresa May became Home Secretary - more than 900,000 work visas have been issued.
[Site link]

Revealed: The father of the Jungle boy who made Lily Allen cry is an ex-Islamist fighter who sneaked into Britain in a lorry, claimed asylum from the 'terror' of Afghanistan - and then went back there on holiday
Ross Slater, Simon Murphy and Ian Gallagher
Mail on Sunday, 16 October 2016.

The father of the migrant boy controversially championed by Lily Allen sneaked into Britain in the back of a lorry to claim asylum – then returned to the country he fled in terror for a three-month holiday after being given the right to stay here.

Hazrat Gul Sherin, whose son Shamsher appeared with the tearful pop star last week as she 'apologised' on behalf of Britain for bombing his country and putting him 'in the hands of the Taliban', came to the UK illegally in 2005, having fled war-torn Afghanistan.

His decision to flee the country was prompted not by the Taliban but because as a leading supporter of a brutal Islamist warlord – and an officer in his private army – he was afraid of the US and UK-backed Northern Alliance.

After seven years, Sherin was given indefinite leave to remain in the UK, then promptly returned to Afghanistan to visit his family.

The Mail on Sunday can reveal that the 49-year-old was a commander in the Islamist group Hezb-e Islami, led by the Butcher of Kabul, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar. ...

... Sherin now lives in Birmingham and is hoping that 13-year-old Shamsher will be able to join him from Calais soon. ...

Yet the boy's father, from Jalalabad, revealed the startling truth behind his journey to the UK in an interview with The Mail on Sunday. To reach Britain, he hiked across eight countries before being stowed away by traffickers in a fruit lorry.

He spent seven years living on benefits in Birmingham before his claim for asylum was accepted in September 2012. He then went back to Afghanistan, flying in via Pakistan, for the first of two three-month visits to the very country that had put him in fear of his life.

After 11 years in the UK, he can barely speak English.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – population, Europe
UN told EU to accept 1.3m MORE migrants EVERY YEAR or face population crisis
Rebecca Flood
Sunday Express, 16 October 2016.

The United Nations told Europe to accept even MORE migrants as a way of CONTROLLING the continent's declining population.

The radical report, titled 'Replacement Migration: Is It a Solution to Declining and Ageing Populations?' advocates an influx of immigrants as a means of supporting an ageing population.

It projects that over the next 50 years the population of several western countries, including the UK, Germany, France and Italy, will steadily decline unless measures are taken to reverse the trend.

Penned in 2001, the report has resurfaced in the wake of the migrant crisis sweeping Europe. ...

The two regions the report focusses on is Europe and the European Union.

When breaking down migration into the European Union, it hypothesised the EU would need an extra 612,000 people per year between 2000-2025, and 1.3 m per year from 2025-2050 to prevent the overall population declining.
[Site link]

Employment – work visas
EU migrants will ONLY be offered visa if they have skilled job - to reduce numbers by 100k
Simon Osborne
Sunday Express, 16 October 2016.

Immigration from the European Union (EU) will be reduced by 100,000 under new plans to only offer visas to those offered a SKILLED job in Britain, ministers have pledged.

UK borders will be brought back under control with tens of thousands of low-skilled migrants being refused entry each year, under the new plans proposed by Home Secretary Amber Rudd.

Officials expect the EU to impose a visa scheme in return which means Britons will need a permit to work in Europe and will be limited to skilled jobs.

If there are labour shortages in a particular occupation, such as agriculture, a seasonal worker scheme could be introduced allowing people to enter the UK for a fixed period. ...

Around 80 per cent of EU workers who have arrived in Britain in the past ten years are in low-skilled employment.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – crime, Denmark
Foreign Crime Doubles In Six Years
Chris Tomlinson
Breitbart, 16 October 2016.

A new report from the national commissioner of police in Denmark states organized migrant criminal gangs have become more numerous, more specialized and pose a greater threat than ever before.

A large police operation in February of 2015 in the region of Zealand and Lolland-Falster in Denmark led to the search of over 60 addresses by over 400 officers. the raid revealed the largest smuggling ring in the history of the country and consisted primarily of foreign migrants.

Charges against foreign criminals have more than doubled since 2009 and police worry that they are to blame for rising crime rates as domestic offending is declining, reports Danish paper Berlingske. ...

By far the biggest section of foreign criminals come from Romania according to the National Police Commission, who said that most of the crimes committed are simple retail theft, computer fraud, credit card scams and home burglaries.
[Site link]

Whitehall employs THOUSANDS of foreign workers - despite calls for firms to use Brit staff
Ben Glaze
Mirror, 15 October 2016.

Thousands of foreign workers are employed across Whitehall – despite Ministers urging companies to use British staff. ...

However, we can reveal Government departments already collect data on their foreign staff.

At least 7,660 workers are from abroad, according to the independent House of Commons Library.

But the total is likely to be more as a third of workers did not declare their nationality in the latest survey.

Last week Mrs Rudd vowed to toughen up the "resident labour market test" which requires companies to advertise a job in the UK for 28 days before recruiting from abroad.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Germany
Germany has taken in too many migrants - now Europe needs to PROTECT itself, warns expert
Jon Rogers
Daily Express, 15 October 2016.

A leading expert on migration has warned that Germany has taken in too many migrants and that Europe must protect itself from taking in more.

Head of the Berlin Institute for Population and Development Dr Reiner Klingholz warned in an interview that while some immigration, within limits, was useful there were dangers of accepting too many.

He said: "Germany needs workers. But if we let everything run its course, too many people will come.

"We have already experienced it in Germany; if we accept as many refugees as last year, the government is threatening to lose its ability to act."

If Germany continued to take in yet migrants, Mr Klingholz predicted, it ccould see more extreme parties that have "simple answers" gaining power.

Mr Klingholz described his approach to the growing problem of migration from Africa and the Middle East as "realistic".
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – New Zealand
Are New Zealanders becoming more racist?
Phil Taylor
New Zealand Herald, 15 October 2016.

Just how racist are we? It's a question New Zealanders don't like to discuss but a new website is changing that.

That's Us was launched last month. Produced by The Human Rights Commission, it includes accounts of everyday casual racism.

Recent news reports suggest there is much to talk about. ...

The ethnic mix has changed. New Zealand is ranked internationally as "super diverse", one of the most ethnically varied nations in the world. The 2013 Census identified 213 ethnic groups, the five largest being New Zealand European, Maori, Chinese, Samoan, and Indian.

Academic studies tell us we like multiculturalism but we want immigrants to do all the adapting. And we aren't so keen on the practical stuff such as providing policy and resources to support diversity. ...

Victoria University's Centre for Applied Cross-Cultural Research found that though New Zealand has come a long way in accepting diversity and cultural difference the changes were largely only in theory. The country may have "symbolic biculturalism" while Pakeha New Zealanders were still, to some extent, unwilling to redistribute their resources.

The percentage of European New Zealanders is expected to drop from 75 per cent to 66 per cent by 2038. Predictions by Statistics New Zealand are for the proportion of Maori to grow from 16 per cent in 2013 to 20 per cent, Asians from 12 per cent to 21 per cent and Pacific Islanders from 8 per cent to 11 per cent.
[Site link]

Population pressure – schools
Secondary schools are being 'crippled' by a baby boom fuelled by migration as applications for places soar by 50 per cent
Eleanor Harding
Daily Mail, 15 October 2016.

More than half of England's secondary schools are now oversubscribed as they are 'crippled' by a baby boom fuelled by high migration, new figures show.

The proportion of secondaries with more applications than pupil places rose to 50 per cent this year for the first time in a generation, according to research by the FindASchool website. ...

Rob McDonough, headteacher of the West Bridgford School in Nottinghamshire, told the Times Educational Supplement that the costs of being oversubscribed were 'extraordinary'.

He said: 'What's crippling me is funding the pupil expansion. That's worrying me now because [the reserves are] gone.'
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Germany
National push needed in Germany to deport migrants with no right to stay - Merkel
Reuters, 15 October 2016.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Saturday that Germany needed to make a national effort to deport migrants who do not have the right to stay in the country.

After an influx of almost 900,000 migrants last year, some Germans fear their country is being overrun by foreigners. ...

In the past, when smaller numbers of asylum seekers arrived, those who were not granted the right to stay were not deported rigorously enough and that needs to change now, given the high number of refugees and migrants, Merkel said.

"We need a national push to deport those who are rejected. That's indisputable and we're working hard on that at the moment," Merkel told a conference of the youth wing of her conservatives in Paderborn. ...

Deporting those migrants was only one element of Germany's refugee policy, Merkel said, adding that the integration of those who are granted protection must be expedited.
[Site link]

Repatriation/deportation – criminals
Foreign criminals avoid deportation because police fail to carry out immigration checks, report warns
Christopher Hope and Peter Dominiczak
Daily Telegraph, 14 October 2016.

Tens of thousands of foreign criminals in Britain illegally are avoiding deportation because police are not carrying out immigration checks, a damning report has warned.

A report from the border inspectorate found that police are simply accepting claims made by foreign criminals that they are from the European Union and not carrying out proper checks.

Between 2014 and 2015 up to 193,000 foreign nationals were arrested in this country.

However the independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration found huge variations across the country about whether front line officers were passing on details of suspected illegal immigrants.

The report found that some foreign nationals "misrepresent themselves as UK citizens or as nationals of a country within the European Economic Area (EEA), with the hope of evading immigration checks".

In London, the Metropolitan Police were passing on details to the Home Office of "nearly all arrested or encountered foreign nations" from inside and outside the European Union.

However, this was not the case elsewhere in the UK. In the west Midlands the report found it was likely the local force "was not identifying all foreign nationals" to the Home Office.

It added that when immigration officers "were able to check lists of people in custody, they routinely found that five to 10 per cent of the foreign nationals detained had not been referred".

It said: "Both EEA [European Economic Area] nationals and those self-declaring as UK citizens were likely to be missed." ...

New figures have also revealed that nearly 10,000 driving licences were earmarked to be cancelled last year as part of a crackdown on illegal immigration.

Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration David Bolt examined powers to refuse or revoke a UK driving licence and prevent the opening of a bank account in the first assessment of "hostile environment" measures introduced in the Immigration Act 2014.

His inspectors found only a small proportion of revoked licences were surrendered, while the Home Office was accused of failing to fully exploit intelligence it was receiving under the scheme.
[Site link]

Immigration – public opinion
Britain is the country most worried about mass immigration, survey shows
James Slack
Daily Mail, 14 October 2016.
[The online survey was of adults aged under 65]

Britain is the country most worried about mass immigration, a survey of 25 major nations reveals today.

The study by Ipsos MORI found more than 42 per cent of Britons put immigration in the list of issues which most concerns them.

By contrast, it did not figure in the global list of top five worries.

The findings are likely to prove helpful to Theresa May in her Brexit negotiations – emphasising the fact that one of the major reasons Britain voted Out was to regain control of our borders.

They also come at a time when big business is putting pressure on the government not to impose tough new restriction on EU immigration.

Based on the findings, business leaders and MPs arguing that Britain should continue to allow free movement of migrants in return for access to the single market are significantly out of touch with the rest of the country.

Britain's figure of 42 per cent of people being concerned about immigration is even higher than in Germany (41 per cent) and Sweden (33 per cent) – which have been worst affected by the migration crisis.

Out of the 25 countries, Britain is also the most concerned about the rise of extremism, with 28 per cent citing this as a worry.

Also in the top five worries in the UK are healthcare (34 per cent), terrorism (31 per cent) and poverty and social inequality (29 per cent).
[Site link]

Immigration – public opinion, foreign students
Most Britons do not see foreign students as immigrants, survey shows
The Guardian, 14 October 2016.

Foreign students are not viewed as immigrants by the majority of the British public, according to a survey.

The poll conducted for Universities UK found that less than a quarter of adults think of international students (24%) or EU students (23%) coming to study in this country as immigrants. ...

The question of whether those arriving in Britain to study should be removed from the official net migration figures has repeatedly come under scrutiny.

The survey of 2,018 British adults found that 18% of respondents would like to see the number of international students in the UK increase, 44% said it should stay the same, while 21% supported a reduction.

Two-thirds said that international students have a positive impact on the local economies of the towns and cities that they study in, and three in five (59%) agreed that their economic contribution helps create jobs.

The poll also indicated that seven in ten adults believe it is better if international students use their skills here and work in the UK for a period of time in order to contribute to the economy rather than returning immediately to their home country after completing their study.

Almost half (47%) of those polled believed there should be no limit on how long international students should be able to stay and work in the UK after they have completed their study, providing they are employed and contributing to the economy.
[Site link]

Racism – hate crime, moral panic
It's time to shoot down the post-Brexit hate-crime hysteria
Brendan O'Neill
Spiked, 14 October 2016.

Has there ever been a crime panic as flimsy, as see-through, as explicitly designed to make political mileage as the post-Brexit hate-crime hysteria? /.../ This is a moral panic, plain and simple: a naked example of the kind of 'crime construction' by the powers-that-be that liberals and leftists might once have critiqued, back when they were more questioning. ...

For months now, politicians and the media have been telling us that Brexit unleashed an 'epidemic' of violent spite. ...

Yesterday, the Home Office issued its annual report on hate crimes. It says there was a 'sharp increase' in hate crime after the referendum. In July there were 5,468 hate crimes – 41 per cent higher than the number of hate crimes in July last year. But again, we need scepticism – a lot of it. These 5,468 alleged incidents – I know it's evil to use the word 'alleged' these days, but some of us still believe in due process – have not been investigated, far less tried in a court of law, and therefore there is no hard proof of what happened or whether it happened. This is because these 'crimes' (the police and Home Office have given up on the word 'allegations') are simply things that have been told to the police, often through their phone or email hotlines. And then the police instantly – instantly – record them as hate crimes, with no need for questioning or investigation of any kind. Every single person who phones a hate-crime hotline is believed. Again, this isn't science.

For a flavour of how flabby the definition and recording of 'hate crimes' has become, consider this stipulation from the Operational Guidance for police forces dealing with such crimes: 'For recording purposes, the perception of the victim, or any other person, is the defining factor in determining whether an incident is a hate incident... The victim does not have to justify or provide evidence of their belief, and police officers or staff should not directly challenge this perception. Evidence of hostility is not required for an incident or crime to be recorded as a hate crime or hate incident.' Got that? In order for an alleged incident to be recorded as a hate crime – that is, for a phoned-in claim to become a hard fact – the victim or any other person simply has to say it was a hate crime and the cops will not challenge them for evidence. ...

The alleged post-Brexit spike in hate crime is likely to be down to both this highly relativistic recording of such crimes and also to officialdom's active trawling for such crimes. ...

... Rarely has the political motivation behind spreading a crime panic been so obvious, so shrill, as this.

And yet no one on the left or in liberal academia is criticising this madness. This is an extraordinary turnaround. In the 1970s and 1980s, left-leaning sociologists and criminologists devoted much intellectual energy to exposing crime and moral panics. /.../ They recognised that the authorities' handwringing over certain kinds of crime – football hooligans, black muggers, glue sniffers – was often fuelled more by fear than facts. And they argued that such panics were often deployed for explicitly political purposes, to demonise a 'deviant' section of society and make the case for the introduction of more authoritarian measures.
[Site link]

Multiculturalism – extremism, Islam
Home Office censors report into immigration, integration, and radical Islam
Tim Dieppe
Christian Concern, 14 October 2016.

Dame Louise Casey was commissioned by the government to lead a review into opportunity and integration in some of our most isolated communities last year. The review was aimed, among other things, at preventing a repeat of the so-called Trojan horse school scandal in Birmingham, where a group of Muslim leaders were allegedly plotting to take over a group of schools. This week, the Sunday Times reported that The Home Office is trying to censor her report. The report is said to have been ready for months, and to be highly critical of the government's "failure to manage the impact of mass immigration, integrate minorities, and tackle extremism." The report is understood to criticise the government for allowing some areas to operate as if they are Muslim-only zones, where state schools close for Friday prayers. ...

Earlier this year, Casey said: "It is not racist to say that the pace and rate of immigration has created a lot of change in Britain and for some people that feels too much... Not talking about this and the issues that arise from it only creates more tensions, rather than resolving them." She has also criticised councils for "over worrying" about causing offence among minority groups. Attitudes like this have resulted in officials turning a blind eye to child sexual exploitation in Rotherham by Pakistani background men, she said.

The review has also been reported as saying that British laws and traditions, such as the celebration of Christmas, are threatened and need to be vigorously defended in order to stop ethnic segregation dividing society. ...

Casey says: "I have become convinced that it is only the upholding of our core British laws, cultures, values and traditions that will offer us the route map through the different and complex challenge of creating a cohesive society." I hope that the plural in "cultures" here was a mistake. Otherwise this clashes with her strong endorsement of one law for all and her implied criticism of multiculturalism.

As if to underline what Casey is saying, there were several stories this week that served to highlight the growing influence of Islam in the UK. ... Casey is right to diagnose that our culture and heritage are under threat and, although she may not name it explicitly, it is clear that she understands the growth of radical Islam to be the primary threat that we face. Former head of the Equality and Human Rights Commission, Trevor Phillips would agree. He said earlier this year that "the integration of Muslims will probably be the hardest task we've ever faced."
[Site link]

Population – London
London's population has been growing by 100,000 a YEAR as immigration and high birth rate turn the capital into a 'megacity'
James Tapsfield and Steve Doughty
Daily Mail, 13 October 2016.

The population of Greater London has been growing by around 100,000 a year as it pushes towards 'megacity status'.

This is despite young families leaving the city at an alarming rate as property prices continue to soar, an official analysis reveals.

The number of children and teenagers is dropping by more than 30,000 a year as parents in their 30s fail to cope with London's sky-high housing costs, the Office for National Statistics found.

However, immigration is helping push the capital's overall population up by almost 120,000 a year.

As well as a high birth rate immigration has driven the growth of the capital over the past five years.

According to ONS estimates, an average of nearly 100,000 people from overseas moved to the capital every year between 2011 and 2015, helping increase the population by nearly 5 per cent.

But the full impact of immigration is greater still. More than half a million babies were born in London between 2011 and 2015, and a majority were born to immigrant mothers.

In 2015, 58 per cent of babies born in London were children of mothers who were themselves born abroad.

The experts examined population data relating to London and the next 10 most populous city areas.

All saw an increase in inhabitants, with the total population across the 11 regions rising by 3.4 per cent, or 885,000 in four years, to reach almost 27.2 million in 2015.

Greater London saw the sharpest jump in population, with an increase of 5.7 per cent, or nearly 500,000 residents, from 8.2 million in mid-2011 to just under 8.7 million in mid-2015. It is expected to hit 'megacity' status - a population of more than 10 million - in a little over a decade. ...

'London's attraction to immigrants no doubt reflects its status as a major employment centre and international hub,' the study said.

'With its high ethnic minority population it may prove especially attractive to people wishing to join family or others from that cultural background.

'In addition, for people heading to the UK, London is somewhere they are more likely to have some pre-existing awareness of than other parts of the country - perhaps because of previous visits, but also simply because it has a higher profile as the UK capital.' ...

The children's flight from London meant 31,700 more under-18s left every year to live elsewhere in Britain than arrived. They departed alongside a movement of 33,600 people aged between 30 and 44 out of London each year. ...

There were also over 90,000 more people of 45 and older who left each year than arrived, many choosing to retire in distant towns or the countryside.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Africans, Italy
Arrivals to Italy now main concern of migration crisis, says EU border guard
Gabriela Baczynska
Independent, 13 October 2016.

Refugees and migrants arriving by sea to Italy are now the main problem faced by the European Union in its efforts to stem mass immigration, the head of the bloc's border agency has said.

Italy has now overtaken Greece as the main point of entry for refugees and migrants trying to reach Europe, figures from the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) show.

More than 144,000 people have reached Italy so far this year, compared to the nearly 154,000 arrivals in the whole of 2015. Arrivals to Greece fell sharply after the EU struck a deal with Turkey to prevent departures from its shores. ...

Some 90 per cent of arrivals in Italy began their voyage on smugglers' boats in Libya, though there has been an increase in refugees and migrants arriving from Egypt in recent weeks, EU officials say.

But nearly all those who reach the Italian coast arrive on EU rescue vessels, having been plucked from the sea or saved from overcrowded, unsafe dinghies, according to officials.

They say a rise in the number of rescues may have been inadvertently caused by the EU stepping up its naval Sophia mission in the Mediterranean to go after arms traffickers and train the Libyan coast guard.

"Smugglers started putting even more people on even less reliable boats as now they only have to be able to travel for a shorter period of time before they get to where we are and call for help," a senior EU official said on condition of anonymity.

"Since we are obliged to rescue people in such situations, we have been fishing more out and bringing more to Italy."

Another senior EU official said: "This is not a 'natural' phenomenon, it's engineered by the smugglers."

The EU says the vast majority of migrants who reach the bloc are not eligible for asylum and will be sent back, though deportations often prove difficult in practice. ...

UNHCR data shows Nigerians make up nearly a fifth of the arrivals in Italy, followed by the nationals of Eritrea at 13 per cent and then Sudan, Gambia, Ivory Coast, Guinea, Somalia, Mali, Senegal and Bangladesh.

Despite Italy's woes, total arrivals to the EU this year are expected to be way below the record 1.3 million refugees and migrants registered in 2015.
[Site link]

Illegal immigration – students, overstaying visas
A secret report shows that Theresa May massively overstated immigration numbers
Thomas Colson
Business Insider, 13 October 2016.

Only 1% of international students break the terms of their visa and fail to leave after their course ends, according to a leaked government report obtained by The Times.

The government has suggested in the past that tens of thousands of students are overstaying their visas every year – but the figure is closer to 1,500, according to the report. ...

The government study looked at data from exit checks, which were reintroduced last year. Exit checks provide details of travellers leaving British borders, and allow the government to determine exactly who has left, and who is still in the country.

The checks are detailed enough to allow the government to know exactly how many international students have left on time, and how many have overstayed.

A source told The Times that while some students applied to switch visa categories – to a skilled work visa, for example – only about 1% of non-EU students overstay their visas. Based on past estimates of international students that number is around 1,500.

The Home Office has denied that the data is conclusive and said the study was "not completed."
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – EU migrants' benefits, Germany
German government approves strict limits on EU migrants claiming benefits
Kate Connolly
The Guardian, 13 October 2016.

The German government has approved a draft bill intended to dramatically reduce European Union citizens' access to the country's social welfare system.

Under the proposed law, EU citizens would be forbidden from drawing benefits for their first five years in Germany.

The labour minister, Andrea Nahles, a Social Democrat member of Angela Merkel's coalition government, has been working on the draft bill for months, following a ruling by the federal court that EU citizens had a right to benefits after living in Germany for just six months.

Nahles argued the ruling would only encourage "social welfare tourism" and said municipalities who were responsible for paying unemployment benefits were unfairly burdened by the estimated €800m (£720m) a year spent on the 130,000 EU citizens currently registered as jobseekers.

Her proposal goes considerably beyond the four-year moratorium controversially argued for by the former British prime minister David Cameron before the UK's EU referendum.

The law would not exclude EU citizens currently in employment from entitlement to welfare payments, or those who have rights to payments because they have worked. ...

The bill now goes to the Bundestag, where it is widely believed that it will gain enough approval to pass into law.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – border checks, European Union
Germany, Austria say emergency EU border checks must stay
Gabriela Baczynska
Reuters, 13 October 2016.

Germany and Austria said on Thursday emergency border checks imposed within Europe's free-travel zone during the migrant crisis must be extended beyond the mid-November deadline.

In a blow to European integration, the European Union partly suspended the so-called Schengen free travel zone last year as countries struggled with a chaotic influx of about 1.3 million people, most of whom trekked from Greece to Germany after crossing the sea to flee conflict in the Middle East and Africa. ...

Germany, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Austria have the emergency border checks in place and Brussels-based diplomats from several EU member states have said in recent days they did not expect to fully restore free movement yet. ...

A report by non-governmental organisation RAND commissioned by the European Parliament estimated one-off costs of re-establishing borders inside Schengen at up to 20 billion euros, with annual operating costs at up to 3 billion euros thereafter.

Disruption to tourism and trade mean the overall cost to the EU economy would be much higher, though difficult to estimate.
[Site link]

Immigration – Africans
Africa's population boom fuels 'unstoppable' migration to Europe
Tim Cocks and Edward McAllister
Reuters, 13 October 2016.

As long as population growth in African countries outstrips their ability to educate, house and employ their citizens, large numbers of people will continue to brave the deserts and seas to escape.

"You can't resolve this by just paying money," said Owoeye Olumide, a demographer at Bowen university in southwest Nigeria, one of the world's most densely populated regions. ...

Niger, a vast, largely desert nation to the north of Nigeria, presents the starkest example of Africa's challenges.

With an average of 7.6 children born to each woman, its population is projected to more than triple to 72 million by 2050, from about 20 million now, according to the latest U.N. figures. By then, Africa will have more than doubled its population to 2.4 billion, the United Nations says. ...

The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) expects migration through the Agadez region this year to reach 300,000, more than twice the 120,000 it estimates came through in 2015. ...

In 2013, Niger's corruption investigators did a study on smuggling that was never published, but which Reuters has seen. It said Niger's security forces make almost half a million CFA francs ($850) from every round trip by a smuggling truck – just from migrants alone, not including payoffs from the gangs. ...

And despite predictions, economic growth hasn't significantly cut birth rates in most African countries.

Yet even if Africa is 'rising', says Renaissance Capital's Charles Robertson, himself an optimist, migration will remain "pretty unstoppable".
[Site link]

Border controls – Calais, France
REVEALED: Calais migrant chaos has cost UK taxpayers more than £90 MILLION over two years
Giles Sheldrick
Daily Express, 12 October 2016.

UK taxpayers have forked out more than £90 million in just two years tackling the migrant chaos in Calais, it has emerged.

The astonishing figure on securing the besieged port town works out at £123,287 a day.

And Home Secretary Amber Rudd promised that Britain would continue to contribute towards the spiralling cost even after the notorious "Jungle" camp is cleared.

The revelation comes just days before bulldozers were set to flatten the shantytown which is now home to 10,000 UK-bound refugees.

Evictions will start after the Home Office has finalised plans to bring nearly 400 unaccompanied children from Calais.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – European Union
MIGRANT RELOCATION FARCE: EU fails to move 160,000 migrants from Italy & Greece
Rebecca Perring
Daily Express, 12 October 2016.

The European Union's failure to relocate 160,000 migrants from Greece and Italy has been laid bare in a shocking report, with critics blasting the deal as FARCICAL.

It has been a year since the European Commission reached a deal to ease pressure on the besieged southern European states by resettling hundreds of thousands of Syrian, Eritrean and Iraqi migrants arriving on their shores in other European countries over two years.

But it has now emerged a mere 5,953 people have been moved to other member states, despite Brussels bureaucrats hailing "significant progress" in the deal. ...

Official figures show more than 420,000 migrants and refugees from Syria and other countries have landed in Italy since the start of 2014. ...

Greece, which is hosting more than 58,000 migrants and refugees, has repeatedly appealed to the EU to speed up the programme to no avail.
[Site link]

Politics – Labour Party
What is Labour's immigration policy?
George Eaton
New Statesman, 12 October 2016.

"We don't know what you stand for." That was the lament Labour MPs frequently heard from voters during Ed Miliband's leadership. The party's nuanced policies on immigration and the deficit rarely translated into clear messaging.

Under Jeremy Corbyn, the expectation was that this would change. Unlike Miliband, the Labour leader rarely agonises over policy stances. But the party's position on immigration has recently been defined by confusion. ...

... The tension lies between those who believe that reduced immigration should be an explicit policy aim and those who regard it as a potential byproduct of other measures (such as tougher employment regulation).

Corbyn himself stated the latter position in response to the Conservative conference: "They [ministers] should stop the abuse of migrant labour to undercut pay and conditions, which would reduce numbers," he said. As one might add, would a Brexit-induced crash.

But the fine distinction between believing immigration will be reduced and that it should be is one interviewers are likely to repeatedly exploit.
[Site link]

Border controls
Take back control? Our Border Force is in no fit state to do its job
Polly Toynbee
The Guardian, 11 October 2016.

May missed all her targets when she was in charge of immigration as home secretary, so she knows better than anyone the impossibility of cutting net migration down to "tens of thousands". She knows UK border controls are inadequate: police find 10,000 people each year who have entered ports in the backs of lorries, and Dover's Tory MP Charlie Elphicke claims many more, never detected, step straight into the arms of traffickers.

Public sector cuts have not spared the service that is supposed to security-check all arrivals at a time of a raised terror threat. ...

Had she asked staff about their workloads, they probably wouldn't have told the truth, governed as they are by a regime of terror and targets. I spoke to some Border Force staff, on condition of strictest anonymity, meeting them miles away from Heathrow for fear of disciplinary action if they were caught talking to a journalist. With no culture of transparency, this service punishes whistleblowers.

Here's what they told me: after the public row over gigantic queues before the 2012 Olympics, strict targets were set: non-EU passengers must queue for no more than 45 minutes, EU for 25 minutes, and fast-track first class just 15 minutes. These targets must be met 95% of the time.

At present, they are met 70% of the time, and staff shortages mean that civil servants brought in from elsewhere get just a few days' training. "All they can do is a basic passport scan," say these whistleblowers. "Training and experience matter. We can feel whether something is wrong about who they say they are, where they've been, for how long and how often. We notice their demeanour, their nerves." It takes experience to spot children being trafficked. E-gates detect fewer suspicious cases. ...

With everyone manning the desks, paperwork piles up behind the scenes: asylum claims are rising again and people stopped can wait hours to be checked. Staff are taken off customs: "Guns and drugs don't matter as much as queues," one officer says. ...

Visa checks on people from non-EU countries are weaker, they claim, now visa offices abroad have been closed. "There are no standard interviews for student or visitor visas now. But you can't rely on written references and qualifications," says one officer who has worked overseas. "You need to see applicants to detect people who are not what they say they are." During the present "surge", there is only one forgery specialist each shift, instead of two or three: "They're run off their feet." ...

Passenger numbers have risen by 20% since 2010 and are set to continue rising by 2% a year, while Border Force funding is cut: spending per passenger is down 25%. Some technology is 14 years out of date, while £1bn was wasted on a failed e-borders system. Last year's National Audit Office report warned that the Advance Passenger Information System was collecting only 86% of arrivals. The system cannot check them all "in sufficient time to prevent high-risk travellers from starting their journey to or from the UK," the report said. That leaves 16.5 million people a year unchecked before arrival.
[Site link]

Widow of scientist killed by psychotic knifeman days after charges are dropped demands inquiry into failings
Martin Evans
Daily Telegraph, 11 October 2016.

The widow of a renowned scientist, stabbed to death by a cannabis-addicted psychotic, has slammed Britain's health and legal system for allowing her husband's killer to wander the streets.

Dr Jeroen Ensink, 41, a lecturer at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine was killed by Nigerian born student, Femi Nandap, on December 29 last year, just days after his wife, Nadja, gave birth to their baby daughter. ...

Despite attacking a police officer in May last year and then being caught in possession of two kitchen knives, Nandap was twice given bail, before prosecutors decided to drop the charges against him.

Six days later he attacked and killed Dr Ensink, telling police who tried to intervene that he was the "black messiah". ...

The prosecution admitted that the decision to drop the charges six days before the fatal stabbing had been wrong.
[Site link]

Social cohesion – politics
It's absurd to compare Amber Rudd's immigration speech to Mein Kampf
Ed West
Spectator blog, 11 October 2016.

The Tories want to turn us against migrants by dividing people between 'us' and 'them'; well, let me tell you about another bunch of guys who believed in 'us' and 'them' – the Nazis. Radio presenter James O'Brien made near enough this exact parallel when he quoted from Mein Kampf to show the eerie similarities between Amber Rudd's speech and the former German chancellor's words.

Of course, Mr O'Brien didn't need to quote Hitler. He could have cited the former Labour leader, Ed Miliband, who had the same idea; he might be a less famous figure, but he's marginally more relevant to British politics in 2016. Or instead of reminding us of Nazi Germany as a precedent, Mr O'Brien – or any of the hundreds and thousands of people referencing the Third Reich – could have cited the USA, which already publishes data on H1B visa reports.

I'm not sure how useful such information would be; companies that excel in poor wages and working conditions will most likely have a large number of overseas workers, but so too will very highly skilled, elite firms. Immigrants tend to be disproportionately represented at both extremes in employment (as they are in every other measure, whether it's wealth, educational outcomes etc etc).

But the collective hysteria that followed shows what happens when Nazi Germany crowds out all other history. The poverty of peoples' collective memory and imagination is such that the first minute any politician strays from the path of universalism, commentators reach for the most shocking (and only) historical comparison they can think of. ...

When the Prime Minister says that: 'If you are a citizen of the world, you are a citizen of nowhere,' she is paraphrasing Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, who stated that 'if the whole world is my brother, then I have no brother'. This is the language of particularism. There is no right answer to this, just two different visions of the world; on the one hand those who prefer the comfort and stability of people like themselves, and on the other those who prefer the sensation and openness of diversity and churn, the mixture of languages and cuisines and fashions.

The latter group are heavily found among the creative classes and the well- educated, and so wield disproportionate power; they were almost uncontested for many years but despite this have never converted more than at most a quarter of the population, and probably never will. (A quarter of the population in western Europe. Outside of the West the proportion of globalists is in single figures, if not a matter of decimal places). And when an idea fails to break a certain threshold then it is clear it has run out of steam.

Immigration concerns are mostly not about economics. It just suits both sides to use this as a proxy debate for the far more troubling social issues, namely the natural human affinity for living around people like ourselves. This doesn't make you Hitler – just a human being.
[Site link]

Illegal immigration – amnesty
Why the government should offer an amnesty to the UK's illegal immigrants
Rob Whiteman
The Guardian, 11 October 2016.
[Rob Whiteman was chief executive of the Border Agency from September 2011 to September 2013]

The next five years will see considerable work for Home Office staff managing our border, immigration and passport systems.

Knowing that change is impending for EU nationals, the UK will see additional applications for visas, citizenship and passports from people already living here or hoping to live here. For example, the complex rules on marriage between EU and non-EU partners will be on the minds of many couples, who may now marry sooner rather than later. This will need additional staff and ongoing policy changes for any unintended consequences as a post-Brexit settlement beds down.

But it's doubtful the Home Office, even with more staff, will easily cope with the new workload unless a line is drawn on much of the historic caseload, often going back for many years.

There are no official figures on UK illegal migration. Some academic studies estimate there may be as many as 500,000 people while Migration Watch thinks it could be more than 1 million people. I think the latter is more likely and that the number will continue to grow as the total of people overstaying visas, being concealed through ports, entering on forged documents or absconding from contact will exceed the number leaving voluntarily or deported.

Tackling this caseload is massive. Scant resources are rightly focused on higher risk individuals, such as foreign-national offenders who are deported on expiry of their sentence. Over the past six years, the government has made real progress on reducing abuse, including closing the loophole of bogus colleges that saw thousands admitted without really studying. But better control now cannot reverse the fact that the system has been abused and some people are still here after many years. The vast majority of cases of illegal migration are not active and staff resources could not cope if they were.

An appropriate amnesty would make our post-Brexit system manageable, optimise resources to focus on new cases and also strengthen border control around our lengthy coastline. Replacing antiquated systems is also best achieved by closing legacy cases.

As we have seen in the US, this type of amnesty is controversial. Arguments against include that it may send the wrong signal to future would-be illegal entrants, and regularising through visas many people here may lead to their dependents overseas then applying too, if the rules allow, thus increasing net migration. And where is a line drawn to allow many to remain and the remainder to still face potential deportation?

But the prize of taking a bold step will be considerable. It could shift the public mood, with people here because they are allowed to be here, and would enable the government to tackle higher risk cases and improve its post-Brexit border operations.
[Site link]

Multiculturalism – Islam
EU has allowed 'WOLVES' who threaten the West into Europe, Syrian nun warns
Charlie Bayliss
Daily Express, 11 October 2016.

A Syrian nun has warned that Europe's immigration policy has allowed Islamic "wolves" into the continent who pose a threat to Western civilisation.

Sister Hatune Dogan claimed European leaders have "admitted the wolves" while "the sheep are still" in Syria and Iraq.

Sister Hatune, who worked for 26 years helping Christians and the persecuted Yazidi group, clarified the "wolves" were Muslims who refused to live by European values.

She added the persecuted Christian and Yazidi minorities were were being left behind.

Sister Hatune said: "I do not think that people who live [by the values of the Koran] can be good for us. Seventy-nine verses alone call for infidels to be killed."

The respected nun said women in Islamic culture "have no value" and are "just there for the pleasure of the man, and even more so if they are unbelievers". ...

Sister Hatune said: "The door must remain open to genuine refugees, but not for those who want to revolutionise our society. If we remain silent, our entire future will be ruined."
[Site link]

Multiculturalism – liberalism, Islamisation
Academic Who Investigated UK Sharia Courts: 'Useful Infidels' Helping Fundamentalists Islamise West
Virginia Hale
Breitbart, 11 October 2016.

A reformed "liberal left-winger" academic whose research prompted Theresa May to launch an investigation into Sharia courts, has warned that liberals are enabling Muslim fundamentalists to Islamise the West.

Dutch political scientist and legal scholar Machteld Zee said that by stifling criticism of Islam, "useful infidels" are helping conservative Muslims isolate Islamic communities and encourage them to be more religious and insular.

Zee gained unprecedented access to Sharia courts in the UK while researching for her Ph.D. in law. After sharing her findings, the then-Home Office chief Theresa May ordered an independent inquiry over concerns the courts discriminate against women.

The researcher at the University of Leiden was interviewed recently in Dutch newspaper Algemeen Dagblad about her new book, Holy Identities: On the Road to a Sharia State. An analysis of the problems of the Netherlands's multicultural society, Zee was driven to write the book after spending time in Britain's Sharia courts.

"If you compare the Netherlands in the 1980s with today", she said, "You will see the increased influence of Islam everywhere. Saudi Arabia and other countries have flooded the world with thousands of imams, Islamic text books, mosques and a lot of money."

Interviewing the political scientist, Dutch journalist Wierd Duk noted that in Holy Identities Zee argues Islamic fundamentalists who share the Saudi regime's goal of Islamisation are being helped by "useful infidels" – non-Muslim intellectuals, politicians, and opinion-shapers who don't want to cause offence.

Zee replied: "Yes, leading multiculturalists actually believe that Muslims should be shielded from criticism because it would inflict psychological harm. Although there are many Muslims who find this view idiotic, others use it to call those who criticise Islam 'Islamophobes' and 'racists'."

The Algemeen Dagblad journalist noted that since her work on Sharia courts Zee went from being a self-described liberal left winger, to warning the world "against a lack of knowledge and lack of resistance to advancing radical Islam".

The academic said her research in Birmingham and London opened her eyes to a "parallel society" where "sharia law trumps secular law". "I object to it because these practices are contrary to the rights of women", Zee stressed.

It's important that people learn about Islamisation, she asserted, because the Muslim Brotherhood is handsomely funded by fundamentalists and aims for world domination. Sharia courts are a part of this, the researcher believes.

Zee said: "Authors that I studied for my investigation were generally benevolent towards sharia courts. But guess what? None of them had ever attended a session of such a court. They don't know what is happening there.

"Now they ask me to tell them all about it. Judges in these courts tell women to accept polygamy and not to report domestic violence to the police. Violent fathers are given custody of their children. I get the impression that as these facts become known, the tide of the public debate is turning. I hardly hear anyone pleading in favour of sharia courts now." ...

"I think I set things straight. I note that influential Western intellectuals discourage any criticism of Islam, which helps fundamentalists to isolate Muslim communities and 'Islamise' them. ..."
[Site link]

Immigration – economic migrants, Africans
In defence of Africa's economic migrants
Emmanuel Akinwotu
New Statesman, 11 October 2016.

If refugees are seen as a liability to Western countries reluctant to take them, economic migrants – now overwhelmingly from Africa – have become an additional, unnecessary problem in the eyes of the world.

More and more, the newly ramped-up populist anti-immigration rhetoric depicts these noble instincts – of leaving in search of greater life chances – as somehow immoral or resistible, even though the majority of us share them. ...

Africa's population is set to double by 2050 to become by far the most populous continent in the world according to the UN. Nigeria, already Africa's most populous nation, is projected to grow from 170 million to 400 million. Nigerian politicians often wrongly interpret these alarming statistics as an achievement. Population growth is eclipsing the pace of development and infrastructure growth. The collapse in the price of oil and global commodities has set Africa's biggest nations back further, with the continent projected by the World Bank to grow at its slowest rate for over 20 years.

Africa's challenges are also stark for Europe – its wary neighbour. Twenty per cent of African migrants who leave their home countries travel outside of the continent. As Africa's population grows, so does the fear of African migration to Europe.

It's fair for European politicians to be concerned about the growing number of migrants arriving in Europe. African population growth over the next few decades, and by virtue of that, migration from Africa, is a significant policy challenge for the international community. But the reaction and commentary that these fears often legitimise are not acceptable. ...

The language of immigration too readily accommodates the wild narrative of an immigrant "invasion", bringing "pressure" on public services and communities, at odds with the facts that show their significant economic contribution.
[Site link]

Terrorism – crime
Europe's criminals prove easy converts to "gangster jihad" for ISIS
CBS News / Associated Press, 11 October 2016.

The lines between terrorism and criminality are becoming blurred as an increasing number of former criminals join the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and create a "gangster jihad," according to a British report released Tuesday.

Nearly 60 percent of European jihadists studied by researchers had been jailed previously, in essence creating a "super-gang," said the report from the International Centre for the Study of Radicalization and Political Violence at King's College London.

Once recruited by ISIS, these people easily transition to committing violence for a different cause, making the group different from other Islamist organizations such as al Qaeda, which often radicalized students, intellectuals or other previously non-violent individuals to carry out its violent aims, the report said.

"They are the perfect fit," Peter Neumann, the center's director, said of the criminals bolstering ISIS' ranks.

"Islamic State doesn't require any intellectual sophistication. It doesn't ask you to study religion. It makes it all like a computer game."

The researchers said the welcome from ISIS offers criminals a perceived chance at "redemption" without requiring a change in behavior.

With recruits who are already accustomed to violence, it is less difficult to persuade them to go further. They are also familiar with weapons and are adept at "staying under the radar" and at logistical planning.

While past efforts to stop extremist attacks focused on tracing the complicated international bank transactions that financed militants, ISIS attacks don't necessarily require huge sums of money. The center estimated that some 40 percent of such plots in Europe are now being financed in part by street crime like selling drugs or counterfeit goods.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – diversity, multiculturalism, Canada
How much diversity do Canadians want?
Margaret Wente
The Globe and Mail, 11 October 2016.

Justin Trudeau has made diversity and inclusion the cornerstone of his brand. "Diversity is Canada's strength," he tells the world. There's a lot of virtue in this. We are among the most successful immigration countries on Earth – one of the rare places where high rates of immigration are not contentious, and where anti-immigrant rhetoric has no respectable place in public life.

But the Prime Minister wants us to go way beyond tolerance for cultural differences. He wants us to love and celebrate them. Which can be a stretch. Should we really be celebrating women who wear the niqab? I don't think so. ...

The CBC and Angus Reid did their own recent polling on this subject. The results disconcerted many. Nearly 70 per cent of respondents said "minorities should do more to fit in with mainstream society rather than keep their own customs and languages." (According to the survey, long-time immigrants agree.) So much for decades of official multiculturalism. ...

... According to a recent Ipsos poll, only one in three Canadians think immigration has been generally negative for Canada – a proportion that has remained steady for a decade, despite immigration levels that are among the highest in the world.

But the Liberals' aggressive immigration strategy will surely test Canadians' goodwill. In the past year, the government brought in 320,932 immigrants and refugees – one-third more than the year before. It's the largest influx of people to Canada since the West was settled in the early years of the last century, and Immigration Minister John McCallum wants to keep it up. He says we need all these people to make up for demographic decline and to boost the economy of stagnant regions.

These arguments are largely spurious. ...

Yet in liberal discourse, any resistance to immigration on any grounds makes you a racist, and any questions about immigration policy are perceived as illegitimate. People get frustrated by that. They're also frustrated by a narrative that, in their view, only goes one way. They feel they're constantly being harangued by their betters that it is they who must accommodate the newcomers. No one ever talks about what the newcomers should do to accommodate them. ...

Many progressives (including, I suspect, Mr. Trudeau) hold a romantic view of immigration as a sort of global social-justice project, which obliges us to share our good fortune with as much of the rest of the world as possible, while declaring that every other culture is just as good as ours is.

Thankfully, most Canadians don't share this woozy notion. They pride themselves on their tolerance. But they're also hard-headed pragmatists. They think immigration policy should serve our national interests, and that our leaders should not forget it.
[Site link]

Politics – European Union, Brexit
Some EU countries have migration controls within single market, says MEP
Anushka Asthana
The Guardian, 10 October 2016.

A prominent Brussels politician has said that a number of European countries have been allowed to put in place tougher immigration measures than the UK while retaining access to the single market.

Vicky Ford, a Conservative MEP who chairs the European parliament's committee on the internal market, said in one case a country had even set an "upper break" on migrant numbers without losing economic ties.

The comments suggest Theresa May could be able to hit back at the uncompromising positions being taken by her European counterparts in a bid to retain single market access while reducing immigration. ...

"If you look at a country like Liechtenstein, in the EEA, they have access to free movement of goods within the single market [but they] have an absolute cap on the number of people given residency a year – and it is only 90 people," she said.

Ford, who is the East of England MEP, argued that the "Liechtenstein solution" might not be perfect for the UK, but said it was an important precedent that a country with a population of 37,000 was given such a low limit.

"We have towns of 30,000 – that is the size of Wisbech, but some years it has had over 1,000 people [arrive]," she said.

Ford said that the numbers of migrants in some British towns had been equivalent to the quota of 1,200 refugees for the whole of Hungary, which has caused huge controversy.

"The ability to put an upper break is a concept that has been adopted by EEA members and they have been given access to the single market," she said.

Ford, who has expertise on the single market as a result of her role at the helm of a key Brussels' key committee on the issue, said even EU countries went further on immigration than the UK.

"Look at a country like Belgium," she said. "To live in Brussels you need to have a social security card, you need to be registered with your local area. And you have to have an employer who is committed to pay your social security benefits – or to be able to prove that you've got substantial private funds.

"In practical terms it is not possible go and live in Belgium and access public services without a job ... Without your social security card you can't get housing, education, healthcare, rent a property." ...

And she said other ideas were being considered as well: "In Switzerland [in the single market] they are introducing a rule that jobs have to be advertised locally and when I talk to colleagues across European countries they think that is a perfectly reasonable thing to be looking at."
[Site link]

Politics – Labour Party
Keir Starmer calls for immigration to be reduced
Rajeev Syal
The Guardian, 10 October 2016.

Keir Starmer, the shadow Brexit minister, has said immigration is too high and called for it to be reduced as Britain leaves the EU, despite Jeremy Corbyn ruling out any cap on arrivals.

In his first interview since being recruited to the shadow cabinet on Friday, the former director of public prosecutions appeared to disclose a different approach to migration controls to that proposed by the Labour leader in recent weeks.

The MP for Holborn and St Pancras, who has been touted as a future Labour leader, said the number of migrants should be reduced by tackling a skills shortage. "There has been a huge amount of immigration over the last 10 years and people are understandably concerned about it," he told BBC1's The Andrew Marr Show on Sunday.

"I think it should be reduced and it should be reduced by making sure we have the skills in this country that are needed for the jobs that need to be done."

Asked if he accepted that limits on immigration would mean an end to free movement and therefore a departure from the EU's tariff-free single market, Starmer said: "We have to be open to adjustments of the freedom of movement rules and how they apply to this country. We have to be shrewd and careful."
[Site link]

Border controls – Brexit, Ireland, Common Travel Area
Britain to push post-Brexit UK immigration controls back to Irish border
Henry McDonald
The Guardian, 10 October 2016.

Britain is seeking to shift the frontline of immigration controls to Ireland's ports and airports to avoid having to introduce a "hard border" between north and south after the UK leaves the European Union, the Guardian has learned.

The Northern Ireland secretary, James Brokenshire, has told the Guardian that London and Dublin will work to strengthen Ireland's external borders in order to combat illegal migration into the UK once it leaves the European Union. ...

"We have put in place a range of measures to further combat illegal migration working closely with the Irish government," Brokenshire said. "Our focus is to strengthen the external border of the common travel area [CTA], building on the strong collaboration with our Irish partners."

The CTA is a unique arrangement that allows for full freedom of movement between people from Ireland and Britain on both islands. ...

The measures will be aimed primarily at non-Europeans seeking entry into the CTA. Politicians on all sides of the divide on the island of Ireland have expressed concern that Irish border towns such as Dundalk could become the "new Calais" if people-traffickers trying to send migrants into the UK target the Irish Republic as a "jump-off point" into Northern Ireland.

Precedents already exist for this Anglo-Irish collaborative model: Indian and Chinese visitors are subject to a system whereby they apply for a single visa, valid for travel in both Ireland and the UK.

The joint Anglo-Irish border procedures will not be able to stem the arrival of EU nationals, as they will retain the right to free movement to live and work in the Irish Republic. However, this point is seen as moot: officials believe few EU citizens will want to come and work illegally in the UK after Brexit. "The numbers would be very small," said one diplomatic source familiar with Brexit discussions.
[Site link]

Extremism – integration. political correctness
Government plans to make UK firms list migrant workers STILL 'ongoing' despite backlash
Alison Little
Daily Express, 10 October 2016.

The Government yesterday insisted it remains committed to cutting migration amid claims it has gagged a critical report into its record on integration and extremism. ...

The Home Office has been accused of trying to censor a hard-hitting report by its "integration tsar" Dame Louise Casey. Casey is said to have found that the Government did not move quickly enough to get a grip on the speed of immigration and its impact on public services. ...

She also warned that "liberal tolerance" and political correctness have gone too far.

The Government wrongly let some areas operate as if they were Muslim-only zones, leaving state schools to close early for Friday prayers, she found.

Dame Louise is said to have voiced frustration at a failure to defend the Prevent anti-radicalisation programme from false claims that it is an attack on Muslims.

Anti-extremist professionals have reportedly been told to expect the findings of the review - which was ordered by then Prime Minister David Cameron and Home Secretary Theresa May - to be watered down.

Earlier this year Dame Louise urged the Government to stand up more for Britain's laws and values and insisted it is "not racist to say that the pace and rate of immigration has created a lot of change in Britain and for some people that feels too much".

This latest report was reportedly finished months ago but is understood to be still under wraps as officials consider whether it focuses too narrowly on Islamist extremism at the expense of examining other forms.

A Home Office spokesman said: "Louise Casey was commissioned in 2015 to review what more we can do to create more cohesive communities in England.

"The report will be published in due course."
[Site link]

Politics – Brexit
Brexit must mean the RETURN of our border controls
Leo McKinstry
Daily Express, 10 October 2016.

The Determination to regain control of immigration was central to the triumph of Brexit in the June referendum.

While the metropolitan progressives extolled the EU's open-door policy, a clear majority of voters felt only despair at the loss of our national identity, the growing pressure on our public services and the erosion of our social solidarity.

The electorate's disillusionment was recognised by Theresa May in her brave speech to the Tory Party conference last week, when she denounced those arrogant, self-righteous elitists who find "patriotism distasteful" and "concerns about immigration parochial".

Yet the anti-Brexit brigade still clings to the belief that Britain must accept freedom of movement. Even after the referendum their instincts are to collude with Brussels. That attitude shines through their attempts to smear any tougher line on immigration as a form of bigotry and intolerance. ...

A particular target for concocted outrage was the plan, announced by the Home Secretary Amber Rudd, for companies to disclose the proportion of foreign workers they employ.

... Despite talk of watering down the plans from Defence Secretary Michael Fallon yesterday, there is nothing remotely oppressive about a possible requirement to report foreign staff.

Indeed, it is standard practice throughout most of the world, including in France and Germany. Those who now shriek hysterically atshould consider that in 2012 the former Labour leader Ed Miliband advocated a very similar initiative, whereby firms would be surveyed to find out the numbers of foreign staff they have.

Any employers "with more than 25 per cent migrant workers", declared Miliband, would be reported to the Department of Work and Pensions to identify any recruitment problems and ensure that British workers have "a fair crack of the whip". ...

Most British people understand that free movement is the problem, not the solution. The CBI might welcome cheap labour but the reality is that many EU arrivals are a significant drain on the state, with more than 40 per cent of them claiming some sort of welfare benefits.

In 2013-14, British taxpayers forked out more than £2.5 billion in tax credits and child benefits for low-paid EU migrants working here, plus £900 million in payments for jobless EU citizens, none of which includes the NHS and education costs. ...

Moreover, national control of immigration will also mean far greater security, giving us back the ability to deport extremists, criminals and illegal migrants without reference to alien judges or bureaucrats.

A country without borders is not a country at all, which is why the EU is so in favour of mass immigration. Free movement is not about economics at all, it is a weapon to smash traditional national identities, creating in their place a new European citizenship as part of the federal superstate.
[Site link]

Disease – mental illness
The mental-health crisis among migrants
Alison Abbott
Nature, 13 October 2016.

Europe is experiencing the largest movement of people since the Second World War. Last year, more than 1.2 million people applied for asylum in the European Union – and those numbers underestimate the scale of the problem. Germany, which has taken in the lion's share of people, reckons that it received more than a million refugees in 2015, tens of thousands of whom have yet to officially apply for asylum. Most came from Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq. Many have experienced war, shock, upheaval and terrible journeys, and they often have poor physical health. ...

What hasn't been widely discussed is the enormous burden of mental-health disorders in migrants and refugees. Clinical psychologist Thomas Elbert from the University of Konstanz in Germany is conducting a local survey of refugees that suggests "more than half of those who arrived in Germany in the last few years show signs of mental disorder, and a quarter of them have a PTSD, anxiety or depression that won't get better without help". ... "It is a public-health tragedy – and it's a scandal that it is not recognized as such, as a physical epidemic would be," says epidemiologist James Kirkbride of University College London. ...

... A 2005 meta-analysis of studies performed mostly in northern Europe showed that first-and second-generation migrants were at much greater risk of schizophrenia than non-migrants – and that those from developing countries were more at risk than those from developed ones. ...

Those who stand out most seem to be particularly vulnerable. The 2005 meta-analysis showed that black migrants in a mostly white population had an almost fivefold increased risk of psychotic disorders. And the risk is higher for migrants living in neighbourhoods with a low proportion of residents from their own ethnic group compared with those surrounded by many of their own ethnicity.
[Site link]

Employment – foreign workers
Companies will not be forced to publish list of foreign workers, Cabinet ministers insist
John Ashmore
PoliticsHome, 9 October 2016.

Companies will not be forced to publish lists of non-British workers on their books, two senior Cabinet ministers said this morning.

Home Secretary Amber Rudd unveiled plans earlier this week to force firms to compile data on how many foreigners they employ, leading some critics to suggest companies would be "named and shamed".

David Cameron's former adviser Steve Hilton called the proposals "repugnant" and "insanely bureaucratic".

But ministers Michael Fallon and Justine Greening said today there were no plans to make any data public, saying it would only be used to identify areas with skills shortages.

"That is really about collecting the right evidence we will need if we're going to be able to respond to skills shortages of employers... this is not data that will be published, there will be absolutely no naming and shaming," Ms Greening told ITV's Peston on Sunday programme. ...

Ms Greening also played down reports that foreign academics had been banned from helping the Government on the Brexit negotiations.

The controversy emerged after an assistant professor at the London School of Economics said she had received an email saying she and other foreign colleagues "no longer qualify" as advisers.

But the Education Secretary insisted overseas advisers were welcome to assist the Government.

"Absolutely and there's been no change in the policy and we'd always, of course, have the necessary security checks... there's been no change in the policy. I'm pleased you raised it because it gives me the opportunity to clarify that," she said.
[Site link]

Repatriation/deportation – criminals
UNTOUCHABLES Just two in 453 foreign lags are booted out of the UK despite Government promising a crackdown
David Wooding and Ryan Sabey
The Sun, 9 October 2016.

Hundreds of foreign cons are still being let loose on our streets despite a No10 pledge to boot them out.

Figures show just two out of 453 offenders freed in a three-month period were deported.

Many continue to claim benefits and run up legal aid bills while fighting to stay.

Tory MP Charlie Elphicke said: "It is incredible that out of 453, just two were deported.

"Deportation should mean out of prison, out of Britain."

Home Secretary Amber Rudd has promised to change the law to make it easier to deport rapists, killers and other criminals once they have served their sentence.

But figures for April to June this year show how they play the system to avoid removal.

They reveal that 451 out of 453 non-EU offenders released from jail were still in Britain at the end of the quarter.

More than half of deportations were prevented by legal or removal issues, according to Home Office data.

But the full toll of criminals who stay is even higher as it does not include those from EU nations who cannot be deported.

The figures show 5,928 foreign offenders are still living in Britain years after being released from prison.
[Site link]

Immigration – work permits
Andrew Green: The EU and migration. Work permits are the way forward
Lord Green
ConservativeHome, 9 October 2016.
[Lord Green is Chairman of MigrationWatch UK]

The fundamental principle should be that movement between the UK and Europe should be disrupted as little as possible. As Boris Johnson put it, we are leaving the EU but we are not leaving Europe. We have a huge network of social, business and historical ties which must be preserved as far as possible. For this reason, there is surely no need to impose any restrictions whatever on tourists, students, those who are self-sufficient and genuine marriage partners coming from the EU. Member states should have the same interests in these respects.

It is the very large numbers of low-paid or low-skilled workers whose numbers must be reduced if the outcome of the referendum is to be respected. Fortunately, the facts are rather helpful in pointing a way forward – assuming, of course, that those already here as well as British citizens in the EU will be allowed to stay on.

First of all, about 70 per cent of EU migrants to the UK come here to work or to seek work, so this must be the target for any significant reduction in numbers. No less significant is the fact that 80 per cent of those EU workers who have arrived in the last ten years are in low skilled employment. This suggests that the introduction of a work permit scheme that confines EU migration to skilled employment would achieve a significant reduction in net migration from Europe. Indeed, our own calculation is that it would reduce net EU migration by approximately 100,000 a year.

This outcome could be achieved by bringing EU migrants into our existing work permit scheme for non-EU skilled workers. This scheme is not "Australian" and is not really "points based" but it already exists, it works reasonably well and it is familiar to employers who already have to check the entitlement to work in the UK of every new employee. It would be for consideration as to whether a formal cap should be applied. Our own estimate is that we would need to grant something like 30,000 work permits a year to EU citizens so as to maintain the current stock of skilled EU workers in Britain and meet the future needs of business. ...

... There would also need to be provision for the self-employed but hedged around to prevent its exploitation by car-washers and magazine-sellers as has happened in the past.

... If all this sounds slightly technical, it is. When it comes to immigration, the devil is always in the detail, but I sketch this outline to indicate that there is, indeed, a way forward which could produce a satisfactory outcome for British business while also respecting the clearly expressed wishes of the British public.
[Site link]

Terrorism – Islam, ISIS
Almost 400 ISIS jihadis trained in Iraq and Syria are now at large on Britain's streets... as it's revealed just 14 fighters who have returned to the UK have been jailed
Martin Beckford
Mail on Sunday, 9 October 2016.

Just 14 battle-hardened ISIS fighters who returned to Britain after waging war in Syria have been jailed, the Government has admitted.

The shock figure is far lower than Ministers previously claimed and means almost 400 jihadis trained in Syria and Iraq are at large on Britain's streets.

Experts told The Mail on Sunday they could use the deadly skills with automatic weapons and bombs that they honed on the battlefield to plot atrocities such as the Paris and Brussels attacks in the UK, massacring hundreds.

Figures slipped out in Parliament reveal that the Home Office believes 850 Britons have travelled to fight for the Islamic State terror group and although many have been killed by drone strikes and in battle, about 400 have sneaked back into the UK.

Any of them could be prosecuted as it is a crime to attend terrorist training camps and also to be a member of a banned group such as ISIS.

But Ministers admit that only 14 people who have fought for Islamic State have been convicted, despite mistakenly claiming the number was 54 earlier this year. ...

Labour MP Khalid Mahmood, who believes thousands of Britons have travelled to Syria and Iraq, said: 'It is a tiny number who have been prosecuted and it's absurd to say this is any form of success.

'If they know who they are, they should be prosecuted but the police and security services don't have the resources to do that.'

Professor Anthony Glees, Director of the Centre for Security and Intelligence Studies at the University of Buckingham, told The Mail on Sunday that the 'minuscule' number of prosecutions was 'very disturbing'. ...

Former Security Minister Lord West of Spithead said: 'We know that people who have been abroad and radicalised are extremely dangerous.

'Clearly we need to be able to keep a handle on that and make sure they are properly monitored. If we're not doing that, we are letting the public down.'
[Site link]

Illegal immigration – border security
EXPOSED: Thousands of illegal migrants easily sneak through Britain's 'porous' borders
Giles Sheldrick
Daily Express, 8 October 2016.

The catastrophic state of our border security is exposed today.

Former borders chief Rob Whiteman said that thousands of illegal migrants had simply vanished without trace.

Asylum seekers had also disappeared in their droves. Mr Whiteman, chief executive of the UK Border Agency from 2011 to 2013, said failures were unchecked because of scant resources.

He revealed illegal migrants and asylum seekers were disappearing in the UK in tens of thousands as staff focused on "high-risk" serious criminals. He said National Insurance numbers were being issued to migrants with false identity documents. ...

Mr Whiteman is the first senior former official to come clean about the scale of illegal immigration and the ease with which people can sneak into Britain.

Last year 84,088 people caught trying to reach Britain illegally from the Europe. It is believed at least another 170,000 made it.

He said resources were being targeted on high-risk foreigners. Those who arrived undetected or claimed asylum and subsequently absconded were largely ignored. ...

Mr Whiteman, now head of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy, said: "It is not unreasonable to assume that the number detected is only a proportion of the number trying.

"I would have thought the number caught is at best half.

"The number of illegal migrants reaching the country is far greater than the rate at which we are deporting people.

"Either we have to put considerable new resources and policies into removal, including holding more people in detention, or accept there are a large number of people living in the country who are not allowed to live here but neither are they facing deportation.

If you have come here on false documents with a false identity you may well now have a National Insurance number.

"A lot of illegal migrants may be working here legally. An Italian ID card is enough to give you an NI number.

"If the public is ever going to be reassured we have to talk about the fact that there is a large amount of illegal migration that is not being dealt with.

Either the Home Office needs more staff or we accept the situation isn't going away." ...

"We don't know the true illegal migration figures but I do think it is more in the region of a million."
[Site link]

Immigration – EU migrants, permanent residence
Every EU migrant can stay in UK after Brexit: all 3.6 million to have residency rules or get amnesty
Peter Dominiczak
Daily Telegraph, 8 October 2016.

All EU nationals currently living in Britain will be allowed to stay following Brexit, after the Home Office discovered that five in six could not legally be deported.

There are around 3.6 million EU citizens living in the UK, more than 80 per cent of whom will have permanent residency rights by the time Britain leaves the union in early 2019, official research has concluded.

The remainder – more than 600,000 people – will be offered an amnesty, with several Cabinet ministers telling The Telegraph that those citizens will be offered the right to stay permanently, in a policy that may prove controversial.

Theresa May, the Prime Minister, has refused to guarantee the rights of EU citizens currently living in the UK, saying she believes that the Government must not "reveal its hand" ahead of Brexit negotiations, which will begin when she triggers Article 50 next year.

Once an EU citizen has been in the UK for more than five years, they are given permanent residency rights. ...

Although Cabinet ministers are privately giving assurances that they will all be allowed to stay in the country after Brexit, the Home Office is still working on a way to identify the exact number of Europeans living in the UK and establish how long they have been here. The amnesty plan is in its infancy and will raise fears that EU migrants could begin travelling to the UK in large numbers before Brexit.

Some officials believe the Government will, therefore, have to announce a cut-off date for new arrivals after which the amnesty would not apply. ...

As many as 1.6 million EU citizens resident in the UK come from the so-called EU14, those nations that were part of the EU before 2004, followed by 1.5 million from the eight Eastern European nations that joined 12 years ago.
[Site link]

Politics – Conservative Party
Theresa May is following Enoch Powell – by actually listening to what British people want
Simon Heffer
Daily Telegraph, 8 October 2016.

Many will recall the conflict in the Conservative party in the late 1960s and early 1970s between its then leader, Ted Heath, and its great ideologue, Enoch Powell. Powell took issue with Heath on various points, and two resonate today.

One was mass immigration, in those days from the Commonwealth rather than Europe, which had happened without the British people being consulted, and which Powell saw from his perspective as an MP in Wolverhampton was causing tension and unhappiness. ...

It was hardly surprising that, as I listened to Theresa May's speech last Wednesday, I was reminded of Powell. ...

Even during the Thatcher government, when it sought to return power from the all-knowing state to the individual, there was still a coterie of ministers who thought they really did know best. Powell understood the feelings of the people: it made him, in the eyes of his opponents, a dangerous politician and rival, which was why they rushed to accuse him (falsely) of racism for his warnings about the unpopularity of mass immigration and of Little Englandism for his views about Europe. Mrs May seems to have learned from this – and, as prime minister, is in a strong position to invite those in her party who disagree with her to defy her if they dare. ...

Not every aspect of her conference speech was so admirable, though. ...

... It has taken almost 50 years to learn Enoch's lessons about accommodating the will of the people, but better late than never.
[Site link]

Politics – Labour Party
Labour needs a clear line on immigration or we could lose some of our best MPs to the Tories and UKIP at the next election
Mike McLaughlin
LabourList, 8 October 2016.

The Brexit vote shone a light on the dark recesses of the disconnect between a London Labour party and our voters in the rest of the country. A pro-EU Labour grouping in the capital is comfortable with the scale of migration and the UK's place in a globalised world can be contrasted with that of the North and Midlands, which for a while voiced concern on these topics – but have felt unheard. What this light has revealed is painful, but utterly predictable. What is of concern is the deafening silence of recognition. ...

The PM may seek her mandate for her Brexit conclusions via a snap general election which would mean Labour having to take a line on immigration. We tried this before with Ed Miliband's proposal for "controlled immigration" but it was scoffed at by a certain cohort of Labour members. The party is going to have to find the middle path that recognises the discontent with immigration outside London, but satisfy pro-immigration Labour members, and keep both in the tent. Labour failed to talk about immigration for over a decade and created a vacuum of debate. While UKIP initially filled that vacuum, the Conservatives seek to occupy that space and talk directly to people who were our core voters.

A third way on immigration is possible. It is not the easiest argument to make, but it is the right one for the country, and for those from abroad already here contributing. Immigration is the lifeblood renewal of our ageing nation. Labour need to be articulating the benefits of immigration, but recognise its problems and be the author of the solutions.

At the next election the Tories and UKIP have the potential to be more in tune with working class communities on immigration than Labour. But these communities are served least well by the right-wing political parties. Labour must not get this wrong.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – European Union
Migrant quotas DON'T work, we need an alternative NOW: Slovakia PM orders Brussels to act
Daily Express, 8 October 2016.

Slovakia wants the EU to drop a proposal to distribute asylum seekers and start working on an alternative plan, Prime Minister Robert Fico said, repeating his view that a permanent quota system was politically dead.

The current EU President, who took on the rolling presidency, proposed in May to reform the so-called Dublin system of EU asylum rules based on a "fairness mechanism" under which each member state would be assigned a percentage quota of all asylum seekers in the bloc, aiming to ease the load on states like Greece and Italy.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Germany
Angela Merkel will BAN EU migrants from claiming unemployment benefits for five years as her open-door policy continues to hit Germany
Hannah Al-othman
MailOnline, 8 October 2016.

EU migrants who move to Germany could be banned from receiving unemployment benefits for five years after arriving under proposed new laws.

Angela Merkel's cabinet is due to agree the plan next week amid a wider debate in Germany about high levels of immigration that threatens the Chancellor's hopes of re-election next year. ...

The proposal would have a similar impact to one the UK government demanded ahead of the EU referendum. ...

Germany is allowed to press on with its own reforms to stop EU migrants claiming benefits because the system in the country is partly based on claimants having made earlier contributions through taxation.
[Site link]

Terrorism – USA
EXCLUSIVE: America's enemies within - SIXTY-TWO ISIS attackers and 'plotters' in just a year and more than half of them are immigrants or their children
Freya Berry
Daily Mail, 8 October 2016.

The growing scale of ISIS activities inside the United States is revealed in a analysis.

A total of 62 people - overwhelmingly men - have launched attacks or been accused of taking part in the Islamic terror group's activities in just over a year.

The 62 were responsible for 48 attacks or alleged ISIS-inspired activities - from mass stabbings to attempts to send money and munitions to Syria.

The analysis of public records shows that six ISIS-inspired attackers have died and 54 have been arrested.

The figures also show that 34 of those ISIS attackers and alleged plotters were either immigrants or the children of immigrants.

They included six people who came to the U.S. as refugees from countries including Palestine and Somalia.

The number of people taken in as refugees and then accused of turning against the country which gave them sanctuary could be higher, as it was not possible to ascertain exactly how many of the alleged ISIS attackers or plotters entered America.

In total 64 people have been murdered and at least 121 wounded in the U.S. by ISIS-inspired attackers.

The analysis shows that 13 people linked to ISIS by the federal authorities were the children of immigrants from countries including Palestine and Pakistan.

And at least 13 were Americans who converted to Islam and took up its most extreme form. ...

Earlier this month FBI director James Comey warned that as ISIS is purged from its home territory in Syria and Iraq, a 'terrorist diaspora' could spread across the globe.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – European Union
Hungarian Intelligence Expert: Migration 'Military Operation' to Destroy Nation States
Virginia Hale
Breitbart, 8 October 2016.

Former intelligence chief László Foldi has said that forces conspiring to open Europe's borders are using the tactics of "fourth generation warfare" to turn the continent multicultural.

Former Director of Operations at the Hungarian Intelligence Services Foldi says the media, so-called humanitarian organisations, and Brussels work together to undermine Europe's borders.

Speaking on Kossuth Radio, the intelligence expert says that following the country's referendum in which 98.5 per cent of voters rejected Brussels's plans for mandatory migrant quotas he expects to see a "serious attack" on Hungary from three directions.

"One of them will be a formal political attack from Brussels, another one an informal attack with the help of the mainstream media, which will be a significant portion of the Western media outlets, but also the local media which are financed from outside of Hungary."

The security expert says the third prong in the offensive is a "concrete attack" on the country's borders, in which "civilian organisations" mobilise migrants to the Hungarian border.

Mr. Foldi highlights how hundreds of migrants suddenly set off from Serbia to Hungary holding signs written in English and chanting demands for open borders following the referendum this week.

A television crew learned, before the migrant crowds left, that unidentified groups of Europeans had made a number of visits to Serbia's camps to tell migrants Hungary's borders will open after the vote, allowing them to enter Western Europe.

The spreading of such "outrageous lies", Foldi asserts, are "not a random occurrence". He reports that the episode is just the latest in a pattern of so-called humanitarian groups spreading false information to mobilise migrants. ...

Questioning why a so-called humanitarian organisation would want to move migrant masses to the Hungarian border, Mr. Foldi says they are acting as part of a "well-established system, built years ago".

"What we seeing every day here is a fourth generation military operation against Europe. Not using traditional weaponry to enforce a strategy, but using economic and social infrastructure, and one element of that is the actions carried out by civilian humanitarian organisations," he explains. ...

Stating that Brussels's goal "is to convert Europe into a multicultural system, a system which is above nations", Mr. Foldi argues that the EU is forcefully attacking Hungary because the country has taken concrete action to protect itself from being forced into multiculturalism.

He concludes: "This is well-coordinated; it is not separate that Brussels wants something, the MSM wants something, and the civilian organisations want something, too. But this is a very well-coordinated effort, where it is only that tasks are divided between the branches of the same attack force."
[Site link]

Population pressure – pupils, schools
'More than 24,000 extra classrooms needed' as school population booms
Charlotte Santry
TES, 7 October 2016.

More than 2,000 new schools are needed within the next four years to cope with rising pupil numbers, according to an analysis published today.

The projections are based on Department for Education figures showing pupil numbers are set to increase by 8.6 per cent in primary schools and 12 per cent in secondaries by 2020.

Today's report says that this means that local authorities will have to find space for 12,209 additional primary classrooms, equating to 1,744 single-form entry primary schools with 30 pupils per class.

A further 12,078 secondary classrooms, or 378 new secondary schools, will be needed to match the rising numbers, claims the report by construction firm Scape Group. In total, this means 24,287 classrooms and 2,122 schools are required, it says. ...

The picture is slightly less stark when the figures are rebased to reflect the average school sizes contained in separate DfE statistics published in June.

The DfE figures show the average primary school has 275 pupils, suggesting 1,331 extra schools are needed.

The average secondary school has 939 pupils, which would suggest another 385 schools were needed, without existing buildings being extended or refurbished to absorb the projected increase.
[Site link]

Employment – foreign employees, numbers, public opinion
Public backs plans to make firms release list of foreign workers, YouGov poll suggests
Samuel Osborne
Independent, 7 October 2016.

A majority of the British public back Home Secretary Amber Rudd's plan to make businesses reveal how many foreign workers they employ, according to a YouGov poll.

Overall, 59 per cent of people say they either strongly or somewhat the proposals, more than double the 26 per cent who said they somewhat or strongly oppose them.

Ms Rudd said firms should declare the percentage of foreign workers they employ as part of a drive to employ more local people.

The policy also garnered favour among Labour voters, with 51 per cent supporting the proposals.

Some 86 per cent of Ukip voters support the policy along with 73 per cent of Tory voters, while 48 per cent of Liberal Democrat voters supported it compared to 37 per cent who opposed it.

SNP voters were split, with 46 per cent in favour and 46 per cent against.

YouGov asked 5,875 UK adults the extent they supported or opposed the Government's proposals to report how many foreign workers they employ. ...

The Labour party said her speech would "fan the flames of xenophobia and hatred in our communities".
[Site link]

Politics – Labour Party
We in Labour must dare to defend freedom of movement
Chi Onwurah
The Guardian, 7 October 2016.

Some years ago I joined a delegation of Labour MPs to the European parliament. A member of the EU commission gave us some of his valuable time. "The British people are just going to have to learn to put up with freedom of movement," he said as he sat down.

Everyone around me agreed. ...

That consensus is now breaking down. ...

It's not only in the UK. Across Europe the rise of the right has made comrades question the appetite for freedom of movement. While the tone and actual proposals differ, the message is often similar. The white working class has been ignored for too long. We need to check our privilege and check out of Europe. ...

This is toxic territory. It does not lend itself to "triangulation" – particularly by those who have little familiarity with the working class they claim to represent. ...

And even if we could triangulate it to try to win more votes, we should not. ...

Ultimately no matter how many soundbites we drop, Labour is not going to be believed as the party that is tough on immigration.
[Site link]

Politics – Conservative Party
Radically increasing immigration? There couldn't be anything more Conservative
Tom Ough
Daily Telegraph, 7 October 2016.

All this could give the impression that the soul of Toryism is hostile to immigration. But while the Conservative party is a famously broad church, it can be most true to its principles not by curbing the influx, but by encouraging it – indeed, by massively relaxing the current controls.

The first and most obvious point is libertarianism. If the modern Tory credo is that people should be able to make a success of their lives if they work hard enough, then it is difficult to make a moral case for restricting an individual's freedom based on the dumb luck of having been born one side or other of a border.

And if, like Mrs May did yesterday, you advocate a "Great Meritocracy", then it rings rather hollow if you are blind to class, gender, race, sexuality, disability, but not nationality. ...

Fortunately, the decision is made rather easier by the strong economic case for liberalised immigration. Joseph Carens, a political scientist at the University of Toronto, argues that the world would double its GDP if it dissolved its borders. Several others posit similar leaps. ...

So there is the economic case; how is it Tory? The answer is that immigration is a far more effective remedy of poverty than conventional aid. ...

There is a better way of alleviating poverty than shoring up India's space programme, and it is commerce – again, a Tory totem. Remittances – money sent home by migrants, small amounts in the West but fortunes abroad – already vastly outweigh the total direct investment in developing countries, and don't have to be funnelled through government.

Migration also encourages the spread of skills and expertise, since those who leave a country are likely to stay in touch and contribute to further trade. Its use as a tool to vastly accelerate development is less a brain drain than a no-brainer.

So far, so metropolitan Tory. What's in it for the Shires? First, it is well-established that immigrants, because they tend to be younger, make a net contribution to our economy. We all benefit from this. There will be concerns that increased immigration will dilute British culture; Sam Bowman, the executive director of the Adam Smith Institute, is persuaded enough of this point to advocate significantly expanded rather than unlimited immigration. ...

Convincing the electorate that large-scale immigration is good will take dexterity, courage, and years. It would be best done by a party which has only just begun its term in office, is all but assured of a second, has suddenly been gifted control of immigration and, above all has all the right economic and libertarian credentials.
[Site link]

Extremism – Islam
US Muslim preacher 'who advocated beheading of gay men allowed to lecture in the UK'
Siobhan Fenton
Independent, 7 October 2016.

A US-based Muslim preacher who allegedly advocated killing gay people is giving a lecture series in London after being allowed to enter the UK.

The Home Office has been urged to retract the visa of Hamza Sodagar who is giving a series of lectures in the capital city between 3 October and 12 October.

Mr Sodagar appeared in an online video recorded in 2010 in which he details ways in which gay people can be 'punished' for their sexuality, including being beheaded or thrown off a cliff. ...

LGBT rights activist Peter Tatchell called on the Home Office to revoke Mr Sodagar's visa. He said: "In a free society, Hamza Sodagar has a right to believe that homosexuality is sinful but not to preach about ways to kill lesbians and gay men. Many people with far less extreme views, who have never advocated violence, have been banned from entering the UK. Calling for death to LGBT people crosses a red line.

"The Home Office was wrong to grant him a visa and should now revoke it. The cleric should be ordered out of the country."

His lectures are being facilitated by the Ahlulbayt Islamic Mission at the Islamic Republic Of Iran School in London. ...

The Mission have defended their decision to host Mr Sodagar, saying his comments did not mean he endorsed murder of gay men and had been taken out of context.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – extremism, Islam, Sweden
How Sweden became an exporter of jihad
Yalda Hakim
BBC, 7 October 2016.

Sweden is a peaceful democratic state that has long been a safe haven for those fleeing conflict. Yet many young people whose families took refuge there are now turning their back on the country. More than 300 people have gone to fight in Syria and Iraq, making Sweden per capita one of the biggest exporters of jihadists in Europe. ...

Gothenburg is where much of the recruitment for jihad is taking place. ...

It's one of Sweden's most diverse cities. A third of the population are from immigrant backgrounds, many of them Muslim, and in the north-eastern suburb of Angered, the proportion rises to more than 70%. ...

Angered has become a tough area to police.

Parts of it are classified as "vulnerable", which in Swedish police terminology indicates a breakdown of law and order, among other things, and the emergence of a parallel society.

I am told that religious enforcers attempt to control the community to ensure Sharia law is adhered to. They allegedly harass and intimidate people - mainly women - for the way they dress and for attending parties where there is music and dancing, which they consider haram. ...

Suburbs like Angered have become pressure cookers of discontent.

You see this built-up resentment mainly with the second-generation "non-ethnic Swedes", as they're known here.

... Many young people I spoke to said they felt disconnected from the country where their parents came from - but didn't feel they were Swedish either. ...

Only in April was the law changed to make it illegal to travel abroad with the intention to commit acts of terrorism. ...

Why would someone raised in Gothenburg want to leave one of the most peaceful and progressive countries in the developed world to join a violent extremist group in the Middle East?

With so many of them saying they don't feel Swedish, perhaps the bigger question is: has integration and Sweden's experiment with multiculturalism failed?
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – illegal immigration, USA
Barely half of illegal border crossers caught
MailOnline / Associated Press, 7 October 2016.

Immigration authorities caught just over half of the people who illegally entered the U.S. from Mexico last year, according to a report commissioned by the Department of Homeland Security that offers one of the most detailed assessments of border security ever compiled.

The report found that 54 percent of people who entered illegally between border crossings got caught in the 2015 fiscal year. That's much lower than the 81 percent success rate that Homeland Security cited publicly using a different counting method.

The 98-page report was completed in May, and Homeland Security officials have declined to release it, despite urging from some members of Congress. The Associated Press obtained a copy from a government official involved in border issues who acted on condition of anonymity because the department has not made the report public. ...

In terms of people, 170,000 eluded capture during the 2015 fiscal year, 210,000 the previous year, and 1.7 million in 2005. The number of people who eluded capture is larger when including those who escaped detection at border crossings or who entered by sea, which is the responsibility of Homeland Security agencies outside the Border Patrol. Adding those, 200,000 people got away last year, 260,000 in 2014, and 1.9 million in 2005.

The huge drop in illegal entries over the last decade coincides with major increases in border security spending, which has reached $14 billion annually.
[Site link]

Politics – public opinion, Europe
Revealed: Nearly Half The Adults In Britain And Europe Hold Extremist Views
Alberto Nardelli
Buzzfeed, 7 October 2016.

Almost half of the adults in 12 European countries now hold anti-immigrant, nationalist views, according to major new research that reveals the spread of fringe political views into the mainstream.

BuzzFeed News has been given exclusive access to new data from YouGov, which polled more than 12,000 people across the continent to measure the extent of what it termed "authoritarian populist" opinions – a combination of anti-immigration sentiments, strong foreign policy views, and opposition to human rights laws, EU institutions, and European integration policies. ...

In Britain, the poll found authoritarian populist attitudes were shared by 48% of adults, despite less than 20% of the population identifying itself as right-wing. ...

In France, a clear majority of people surveyed – 63% – held authoritarian populist views, while in Italy the figure was 47%. In Germany, it was 18%, which appears low by comparison but, given the country's history and the extreme nature of its far-right groups, is regarded by analysts as surprisingly high.

The highest levels of authoritarian populist views were recorded in Romania and Poland, where they were held by 82% and 78% of adults respectively. In Lithuania, by contrast, the poll did not did not detect any evidence of the authoritarian populist phenomenon at all. ...

Like Germany, Denmark has also seen a shift in the tone of political debates. According to the YouGov data, a quarter of Danes who identify themselves as centrists nevertheless hold authoritarian populist beliefs – a similar proportion to those on the right-wing of the country's political spectrum.

"There is a move towards more authoritarianism, discrimination based on ethnicity," said Karen Melchior, a diplomat and candidate with the liberal Radikale party. "It is not a left-versus-right issue. It is like a cold war with competing visions of Europe."

In recent policy discussions about introducing a tougher citizenship test and the appropriateness of segregating classrooms on the basis of ethnicity, even parts of the Social Democratic party held "discriminatory" views, Melchior claims. ...

The rise of nationalist, anti-immigrant views has been strongest in central Europe, with Polish adults scoring the highest in the YouGov survey, taking into account all the measures polled.

In nearby Hungary, the "cultural counter-revolution" that central European leaders pledged in the wake of Brexit is even more stark.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – citizenship, France
Huge Spike in 'New French': Report Suggests Govt Rushing Citizenship Before 2017 Election
Virginia Hale
Breitbart, 7 October 2016.

The number of people given French citizenship this year is likely to soar 45 per cent from 2015's figure, with the vast majority of "new French" from North Africa. The spike follows a concerted push by the ruling Socialist Party to naturalise 100,000 people a year.

In an investigative report, monthly journal Causeur notes that the sharp uptick in naturalisations far exceeds previous patterns and asks whether agencies' rush to grant citizenship to more "new French" is a coincidence against the backdrop of presidential elections in 2017.

In 2012, as Interior Minister, the now-Prime Minister Manuel Valls took a wrecking ball to the previous centre-right government's naturalisation criteria, abolishing the multiple choice tests on French culture and values and the need for candidates to be employed on a permanent contract.

Branding the previous government's policies on naturalisation the result of a "France that doubts, looks at the world with suspicion", Valls declared that he wanted to see 100,000 people a year given French citizenship. The Socialist politician also said he hoped a further 20,000 spouses of French citizens would be naturalised each year through marriage. ...

According to a 2012 survey of 10,000 voters, 93 per cent of Muslims in France voted for the Socialist Party president, who is the most unpopular head of France in modern history.

In his successful presidential campaign, Hollande promised an amnesty to all of the estimated 400,000 Muslims illegally in France.

Now a huge, and growing, electoral bloc, commentators have observed that Muslims in France decided the election. An estimated 1.7 million of them voted for Hollande in 2012, who beat incumbent president Nicolas Sarkozy by just 1.1 million votes.
[Site link]

Employment – policy, democracy
The Tory Foreign Worker Transparency Plan Makes Sense - And Could Reduce Racism
Colin Cortbus
The Huffington Post, 6 October 2016.

This week's Conservative Party plan to make some companies disclose how many foreign workers they employ may be controversial. But is a positive step forward for transparency, and could take the wind out of the sails of those peddling racist myths about immigration. Britain should learn from the Philippines, where radical transparency around foreign worker permits is already a legal requirement. ...

The mandatory list, published in widely circulated newspapers as a classified ad by authorities, contains not only the names of the foreign nationals applying for the right to work in the Philippines. It also shows who their prospective employers are and gives some quite specific details about the work they are going to be doing. There are only a tiny number of corporate, educational and diplomatic work exceptions where this transparency requirement does not apply.

And the information isn't just being provided for passive public consumptions. Local workers can get actively involved in the system - and have their fair say: If anyone spots an illicit permit application in the public list, they have 30 days from publication to file an objection with employment authorities. If they can prove Filipino workers are willing and able to do the job applied for by the foreign national, the permit can still be revoked to protect local jobs. ...

In the absence of easy access to accurate, balanced information about immigrant workers, people become vulnerable to large-scale misinformation from far-right hate peddlers, and self-interested clickbait journalists. ...

London's chatting classes may use this as a disingenuous reason to discount the opinions of the rest of the country: But if people are never provided with full, factual information because the political elite are afraid of people power, who can blame them for accepting xenophobic propaganda at face value? ...

A Philippines-inspired, transparent foreign work permit system would give people back trust in the fairness of the immigration system. They could see, with their own eyes, irrefutable proof in their local newspaper that foreign worker numbers locally are in fact not as high as the far-right rabble rousers purport. Reading the job descriptions, they would realise that most foreign workers are in fact doing vital, community-sustaining jobs in sectors, such as healthcare, where there is a dire shortage of skilled professionals. ...

Real transparency around work permits would finally bring democratic decision making authority about immigration where it belongs: To ordinary people in local communities across the UK, rather than over-paid Whitehall bureaucrats with multiple postgrad degrees in law and jurisprudence. The Tory plans are a step in that direction, but more action is needed.

It's time to give people their voice back. In a democracy they are owed nothing less.
[Site link]

Racism – UK, European Union
How dare these Eurocrats call Britain racist while the Far Right's marching in their own backyard
Daniel Hannan
Daily Mail, 6 October 2016.
[Daniel Hannan is a Conservative MEP]

Across parts of Germany, running battles between immigrants and neo-Nazis are becoming so frequent that they no longer lead the news.

In France and Belgium, Jewish schools and synagogues require armed guards. In Toulouse, a mosque has been burned to the ground. In Sweden, neo-Nazi thugs warned of a 'year of violence' against immigrants.

Racist violence across much of Europe is now becoming almost routine.

So which country has the Strasbourg-based Council of Europe decided to accuse of 'anti-foreigner sentiment'? You guessed it. The European Commission on Racism and Intolerance, which reports to the Council, says it is alarmed at the 'intolerant political discourse in the UK, particularly focusing on immigration'.

Seriously? Political discourse in the UK? Let's compare how politicians talk here with what passes unremarked in other EU states. Czech prime minister Bohuslav Sobotka says: 'To be honest, we don't want a large Muslim population here.' His Slovak counterpart, Robert Fico, is just as blunt: 'Islam has no place in Slovakia.'

In France, Nicolas Sarkozy calls Islamic dress 'a provocation', and promises laws against it. (And, of course, a ban on the wearing of burkas on French beaches sparked huge rows over the summer.)

In Britain, by contrast, Theresa May was cheered by her party members yesterday when she said: 'I want us to be a country where it doesn't matter where you were born.'

By what measure is ours an intolerant country? To be sure, we have our bigots, as every nation does. But against whom are we being so harshly judged?

Look at the strength of authoritarian, anti-immigrant parties across Europe. ...

Nativist parties – that is, ones that argue for the rights of established inhabitants of a nation over immigrants – are polling solidly in Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Sweden and many post-Communist states. Here, though, the British National Party barely registers. It has never come close to winning an MP, and currently has just two councillors.

We keep being told, usually by Remainers, that our EU referendum was 'all about immigration'. In fact, the polls showed throughout that the top issue for Leave voters was democracy and the supremacy of the British Parliament. ...

Of course, to say that other places have a worse record than ours is hardly a knockout defence. Any racial abuse is shameful, and Britain has its share of dunderheads, just like anywhere else.

Still, be honest: does the Council of Europe's report match your experience? Do you, in your daily life, see evidence of what the BBC has taken to calling an 'epidemic' of racism? ...

Ours is a tolerant, comfortable, multi-racial society, which is one of many reasons that migrants prefer to come here.

What is it based on, this idea that we are in the grip of some new xenophobia unleashed by the referendum? Much of it comes from people's determination to see what they want.
[Site link]

Asylum – Syrians, Christians
Exclusive: Why Are There So Few Christian Refugees From Syria In The UK?
Ruth Gledhill
Christian Today, 6 October 2016.

Faith leaders and aid workers have spoken out against the tiny proportion of Christian refugees admitted to Britain under the Government scheme to help the suffering people of Syria.

Under two per cent of Syrian refugees admitted to Britain since the scheme began are Christian, compared to 97.5 per cent that are Muslim.

Before the war began, an estimated 10 per cent of the population of Syria was Christian. Even now that so many have fled and been displaced, there are still 772,000 Christians in Syria, more than four per cent of the population of 1.86 million.

David Cameron, then Prime Minister, pledged in September last year to take 20,000 Syrian refugees to Britain.

The faith of refugees admitted under the Syrian Vulnerable Persons Resettleent Scheme (VPR) has not previously been made publicly available but Christian Today obtained the figures via a Freedom of Information Request.

Home Office records show that between September 7, 2015 and June 30 this year, 2,659 individuals were resettled under the VPR scheme.

These included 2,592 Muslims and just 51 Christians, four of whom are identified as Eastern Orthodox. There are also three Druze and 13 Yazidis.
[Site link]

Employment – numbers, Conservative Party
Forcing businesses to declare how many foreigners they employ is an awful and clumsy idea
Mark Wallace
ConservativeHome, 6 October 2016.

As usual, Twitter got the wrong end of the stick and therefore over-reacted to Amber Rudd's proposal that businesses should report the number of foreign workers they employ. The misunderstanding that the Home Secretary proposed to make companies list such workers by name appears to have come from The Times' headline "Firms must list foreign workers". Within half an hour people were wondering if the Government might insist on Nazi-style coloured badges for foreigners.

... What she was proposing, though, was that companies should be compelled to publish a tally of their foreign employees – along the lines of previous proposals to publish pay disparities between men and women, for example. ...

There are myriad problems with the idea. For a start, it's another bit of meddling red tape which will add new costs for businesses. Worse, the adoption of a 'name and shame' approach rests on an unpleasant assumption that the public would wish to punish companies deemed to have too many foreign employees. That assumption is either incorrect, in which case the policy would have no effect at best, or accurate, in which case it plays to instincts which ought not to be indulged by the Government. Doing so would effectively mean penalising existing foreign workers in the UK for the sin of being foreign – effectively encouraging their employers to find ways to get rid of them. We should not want modern Britain to become a society which does such things.

... Who would know from a raw number if the people involved were employed as labourers or specialist technicians, office cleaners or financial analysts? /.../ Rudd's attempt would be the equivalent of scrutinising the problem through the wrong end of a telescope.
[Site link]

Immigration – controls, politics, Conservative Party
Firms will be forced to reveal how many foreign staff they employ under tough new immigration reforms that can be brought in BEFORE Brexit, Amber Rudd promises
James Tapsfield
MailOnline, 5 October 2016.

Companies will be forced to reveal what proportion of their work force are foreign under new immigration rules that can be brought in before Brexit, Amber Rudd promised today.

The Home Secretary outlined tough new rules on foreign students and taxi drivers in her main speech to the Tory conference in Birmingham.

Ms Rudd has launched a consultation on new powers today as the Government works to outline its Brexit plans. ...

She announced plans to crack down on the 'generous' arrangements for students from abroad, saying they could be blocked from jobs if courses are not high enough quality.

Immigration checks will also be mandatory for taxi drivers, while landlords who rent to illegals could face jail sentences.

New measures forcing companies to reveal how many 'international' staff they employ will effectively name and shame firms which bring in foreigners rather than invest in talent at home. ...

From next autumn banks will have to do regular checks to ensure they are not providing 'essential banking services' to illegal migrants.

But Mrs Rudd said while immigration had 'brought benefits to the nation', wider steps needed to be taken to control numbers.

'This is why I want to reduce net migration while continuing to ensure we attract the brightest and the best,' she said.

'Because it's only by reducing the numbers back down to sustainable levels that we can change the tide of public opinion so once again immigration is something we can all welcome.'

Mrs Rudd said that meant looking across 'work and study routes'.

'This will include examining whether we should tighten the test companies have to take before recruiting from abroad,' she said.

'The test should ensure people coming here are filling gaps in the labour market, not taking jobs British people could do.

'But it's become a tick box exercise, allowing some firms to get away with not training local people. We won't win in the world if we don't do more to upskill our own workforce...

'So I want us to look again at whether our immigration system provides the right incentives for businesses to invest in British workers.'

Mrs Rudd said the government would also look for the first time at whether immigration rules for students should be 'tailored to the quality of the course and the quality of the educational institution'. ...

Mrs Rudd said the government would push ahead proposals to overhaul legislation to make it easier to deport foreign criminals. ...

The Home Secretary confirmed that the government would be following through on a manifesto commitment to set up a new £140 million Controlling Migration Fund – designed to ease the pressures on public services in areas of high migration.
[Site link]

Racism – hate crime
Damning report condemns rising 'racist violence and hate speech' by politicians and press in post-Brexit UK
Lizzie Dearden
Independent, 5 October 2016.

David Cameron and Nigel Farage are among the British politicians and institutions accused of fuelling rising xenophobia in the UK as debate continues to rage over Brexit, the refugee crisis and terrorism.

A report by the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) found a "number of areas of concern" over political discourse and hate speech, as well as violent racial and religious attacks.

Police statistics have shown a sharp rise in Islamophobic, antisemitic and xenophobic assaults over the past year, amid growing tensions in Britain and across Europe.

"It is no coincidence that racist violence is on the rise in the UK at the same time as we see worrying examples of intolerance and hate speech in the newspapers, online and even among politicians," said ECRI chair Christian Ahlund. ...

Government figures have recorded a sharp increase in hate crime but the true scale of the problem may be far higher than recorded, with the Crime Survey for England and Wales estimating that of 106,000 hate-motivated crimes every year, only a quarter are recorded as such by police.

In a report spanning the period from 2009 and March this year, the ECRI noted positive steps with the enforcement of the Equality Act 2010 and legislation against racism and racial discrimination in the UK, as well as the government's new hate crime action plan.

But the commission noted "considerable intolerant political discourse in the UK" particularly focusing on immigration, discrimination against Roma, gypsies and travellers, and a spike in online abuse and violent racist incidents.

It singled out statements made by Mr Cameron during his tenure as Prime Minister as examples of degrading terms towards refugees that "contribute needlessly to an increase in xenophobic sentiment".
[Site link]

Multiculturalism – racism, schools, population change
'Would you say that word in a Chinese takeaway?': schools fight racism head-on
Fran Abrams
The Guardian, 5 October 2016.

Show Racism the Red Card, which works with professional footballers, runs schools workshops around the country. These have taken on a new significance since the Brexit debate, says the charity's education team manager for the north, Laura Pidcock. "Since the vote, there's a sense that we will now start to control our borders," she says. ...

Figures published by the Department for Education show that primary schools are experiencing first-hand the changes in Britain's ethnic makeup. Almost a third of primary pupils in England – 31% – are classified as being from ethnic minority backgrounds. In 2006 the figure was about 20%.

Population statistics show that while the birth rate fell among women born in the UK last year, the rate among women born elsewhere has risen – last year more than a quarter of live births were to women not born in Britain. So primary schools' intakes are becoming more ethnically mixed.
[Site link]

Politics – Conservative Party
Anna Soubry Hits Out At Anti-Immigrant Hypocrites Who Eat Chicken Tikka Masala
Owen Bennett
The Huffington Post, 5 October 2016.

Tory MP Anna Soubry today launched a passionate defence of immigration as she hit out at those who want to end free movement to the UK.

The Remain-backing MP is refusing to shift from her pre-referendum position that leaving the EU would be bad for the UK economy, and claimed the British public has been duped by "myths" from Leave campaigners.

The former Business Minister held nothing back at a fringe event at the Conservative Party Conference as she argued immigration was good for the UK, and it was an unfounded fear of migrants that fuelled the Brexit vote. ...

Soubry waded in on the issue at the Bright Blue fringe event on whether the UK's immigration system is working for British businesses, and said: "I would take students out of the figures, it is the stuff of complete nonsense, ordinary people when they talk about migrant workers they don't think students and I welcome overseas students.

"I would almost have unfettered numbers of overseas students because they go home full of great goodwill for our country and that helps us to trade with them in the future." ...

"Some of these people are the ones who say: 'I don't like all that foreign muck, what are we having for tea tonight? Chicken tikka masala' and then go off for an Italian, but then say: 'We don't want all these foreigners'."
[Site link]

Repatriation/deportation – Afghans, European Union
Thousands of failed asylum seekers to be returned to Afghanistan after it signed an EU deal to take back its migrants
John Stevens
Daily Mail, 5 October 2016.

Tens of thousands of failed asylum seekers will be sent back to Afghanistan after it signed a deal with the EU to take back an unlimited number of its migrants.

A new terminal will be built at Kabul airport to handle at least 80,000 people who will start being deported on flights immediately.

Afghanistan signed the agreement to readmit any Afghan citizen not granted asylum in Europe ahead of an aid summit tomorrow in Brussels where the EU is set to pledge 1 billion euros (£888 million) a year in support.

EU officials yesterday claimed the aid money was not dependent on the deportation deal, but leaked documents showed they pushed for it to be signed ahead of the donor conference 'to maximise leverage'.

Afghans are the second-largest group of arrivals into Europe with 196,170 lodging asylum claims last year. ...

The EU will meets the costs of travel for Afghans as well as funding a 'reintegration programme' that includes helping to find jobs for those deported. ...

Britain already has its own bilateral agreement with Afghanistan to send back failed asylum seekers.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Georgians, European Union
Georgia gets green light for EU visa-free travel
Eszter Zalan
EUobserver, 5 October 2016.

EU states have agreed to grant Georgian nationals visa-free travel to the Schengen zone, once new safeguards are in place to suspend the deal in case of abuse.

"The council takes the view that the entry into force of visa liberalisation for Georgia should be at the same time as the entry into force of the new 'suspension mechanism'," they said in a statement on Wednesday (5 October).

The news comes ahead of parliamentary elections in Georgia on 8 October and could give a bump to pro-European parties in the poll.

The "suspension mechanism" is a European Commission proposal that will, in future, allow EU states to "snap back" visa restrictions more easily in case of mass-scale overstays or bogus asylum claims by any non-EU country.

Details of the mechanism are still subject to EU states' negotiations with MEPs.

Those talks are expected to conclude by the end of the year, meaning that Georgian people should be able to visit the 25 Schengen states (22 EU states plus Iceland, Norway, and Switzerland) without permits before 2017. ...

Berlin had previously blocked Georgia's path over complaints about a crime wave by Georgian nationals in Germany.

Germany and France had also called for the snap-back arrangements to soothe popular concern over immigration in the context of the refugee crisis.

The Georgia deal is part of broader EU plans to open up to visitors also from Kosovo, Ukraine and Turkey. ...

Prior to Russia's invasion of Ukraine in 2014, the EU had also been in advanced talks on visa-free travel for Russian nationals, but those negotiations were put on hold as part of Europe's sanctions regime.
[Site link]

Employment – student doctors
Student doctor numbers to rise by 25%
Nick Triggle
BBC, 4 October 2016.

The number of medical school places will increase by 25% from 2018 under plans to make England "self-sufficient" in training doctors.

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt is to announce an expansion in training places from 6,000 to 7,500 a year. ...

About a quarter of the medical workforce is trained outside the UK, but the impact of Brexit and a global shortage of doctors could make it harder to recruit so many in the future.

Prime Minister Theresa May told the BBC: "We want to see the NHS able to recruit doctors from this country. We want to see more British doctors in the NHS."
[Site link]

Politics – Conservative Party
Theresa May says she WILL deliver 'tens of thousands' immigration promise thanks to Brexit
Joe Barnes
Daily Express, 4 October 2016.

Theresa May has vowed to deliver her promise to reduce net migration to the tens of thousands - and praised Brexit for giving Britain the "control" to carry out the task.

The Prime Minister said the policy "hasn't been watered down" but refused to offer a date when she will achieve the goal because she is "constantly working" to close immigration loopholes.
[Site link]

Politics – controls
Britain will not wait for Brexit to cut migration, Amber Rudd to say
Steven Swinford
Daily Telegraph, 4 October 2016.

Britain will not wait until Brexit to begin cut level of migration, the Home Secretary is expected to say as she unveils a crackdown on people coming to the UK from outside the EU.

Amber Rudd is expected to use her conference speech to announce plans to limit the number of non-EU migrants in a bid to cut the level of net migration in the run up Brexit.
[Site link]

Racism – bias, prejudice
Google promotes controversial claim it's NOT possible for ethnic minorities to be racist against white people
Jasper Hamill
The Sun, 4 October 2016.

Google is promoting the idea that ethnic minorities CANNOT be racist toward white people.

The tech giant's search results appear to foreground left-leaning answers to this highly controversial question, rather than giving a view which reflects the fact there is debate over this contentious issue.

America is currently locked in a passionate argument about whether some supporters of groups like Black Lives Matter are actually racist towards white people, with people from different sides of the political spectrum offering varying views.

However, Google's search facility offers a rather one-sided solution to this thorny and divisive question.

We searched Google using several terms similar to the phrase: "Can you be racist towards white people?"

Google showed us an explanation which appears to be taken from the Huffington Post.

"Any person can be racist, regardless of their own race," Google's search rankings explained.

"WRONG no they can't racism requires power and prejudice. white people have power to oppress black people because they control the system and ecnomic [sic.] structure in society."

We also asked if a black person be racist against a white person and were told: "The usage of the word racist relative to a hate speech by blacks on blacks or whites is incorrect. A subjugated group cannot be racist – they can only be prejudicial." ...

A Google spokeswomen said: "Google does not endorse or select responses manually. This content comes from the third-party sites that we do not control. The feature is an automatic and algorithmic match to the search query. ..."
[Site link]

Immigration – EU trade, public opinion
More than half favour immigration controls over trade, poll reveals
Sky News, 3 October 2016.

More than half of Britons think having complete control over immigration policy is more important than access to the EU single market in Brexit negotiations, a Sky Data Snap Poll reveals.

Some 52% prioritise controlling immigration while 40% think access to the single market is more important - 7% answered "don't know".

The findings come as Theresa May hit the headlines with a conference speech seen as focusing on a "hard Brexit", insisting "we will decide for ourselves how we control immigration". ...

As with the EU referendum vote itself, the Sky Data poll revealed a marked divide in opinion by age.

Those aged 18-34 would prioritise the single market 57% to 38%, while those aged 55 or older prioritised border control 65% to 27%. ...

Sky Data interviewed a nationally representative sample of 1,003 Sky customers by SMS on 30 September 2016. Data are weighted to the profile of the population.
[Site link]

Terrorism – migrants, Hungary
Majority of Paris attackers used migration routes to enter Europe, reveals Hungarian counter-terror chief
James Rothwell
Daily Telegraph, 3 October 2016.

The majority of the Isil extremists who carried out the November 13 Paris attacks entered Europe while posing as migrants, Hungarian security officials have disclosed.

Seven of the attackers, who killed 130 people and left more than 360 others injured, slipped through Hungary's borders while posing as migrants.

It is understood that ten extremists in total were closely involved in planning and carrying out the massacre.

A handful of them are also understood to have taken part in the Brussels attacks last March, which claimed 32 lives.

According to Hungary's centre for counter-terrorism, the group of fanatics set up a "logistics hub" in the country in the summer of 2015 and began using the so-called Balkans route of eastern European countries to move fighters trained in Syria into Europe. ...

Speaking to the Sunday Times, deputy counter-terror chief General Zsolt Bodnar said they made the discovery after a close examination of the suspect's mobile phones.

He revealed that Abdelhamid Abaaoud, the Belgian-Moroccan terrorist who died after the Paris attacks, had sent scout to "map out" the migrant route in July 2015.

The scout, named as Bilal C, then used social media networks such as Facebook and Whatsapp to send reports back to Abaaoud and his co-plotters.

Many of the suspects were born in Europe and then travelled to join Isil in Syria after being radicalised.

Though their names were registered in counter-terorism databases across Europe, they appear to have taken advantage of the mass migration to make their way back from Syria.

Many of them posed as Syrian refugees, were carrying fake Syrian passports, and had been trained in covert communications, Gen. Bodnar said.
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – referendum, Hungary
Hungary PM claims EU migrant quota referendum victory
BBC, 3 October 2016.

Hungarian PM Viktor Orban has declared victory in a referendum on mandatory EU migrant quotas, despite a low turnout that appeared to render it invalid.

Nearly 98% of those who took part supported the government's call to reject the EU plan.

But only 43% of the electorate voted, short of the 50% required to be valid.

A government spokesman said the outcome was binding "politically and legally" but the opposition said the government did not have the support it needed. ...

Ferenc Gyurcsany, leader of the opposition Democratic Coalition, said the low turnout showed that most people did not support the government. ...

But a government spokesman said the result could not be regarded as invalid.

"The government initiated the referendum, so both politically and legally the outcome is binding," he said.

"The 50% would have made a difference because parliament could have no alternative but to make a decision. But parliament is behind the government regarding the decision. This is a reinforced mandate for the government."
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Czech Republic, European Union
'SEND THEM BACK!' Fuming Czech leader orders Brussels to DEPORT economic migrants
Nick Gutteridge
Daily Express, 3 October 2016.

Economic migrants arriving in Europe should be immediately deported from the continent in a tough new crackdown on the refugee crisis, a fuming EU leader demanded today.

Furious Czech leader Milos Zeman ordered Brussels to send all failed asylum seekers to "empty places" in North Africa or "uninhabited Greek islands" to deter further mass migration to Europe.

The outspoken president said EU nations should provide refuge to people fleeing war and persecution in Syria, but insisted anyone found to be an economic migrant should be sent home. ...

Mr Zeman also echoed the comments of other eastern European leader, like Hungary's Viktor Orban, in linking the influx of migrants from the Middle East to a rise in the terror threat to Europe.

He told the Financial Times: "I am sure there is a strong connection between the wave of migrants and the wave of jihadis... and those people who deny this connection are wrong."
[Site link]

Politics – Conservative Party, EU referendum
'A HUGE MISTAKE' Ex-No10 spin doctor Sir Craig Oliver blasted by Remain donor Roland Rudd for 'gagging' campaign over immigration
Harry Cole
The Sun, 3 October 2016.

Top Remain donor Roland Rudd has launched a blistering assault on ex-No10 spin doctor Sir Craig Oliver, accusing him of gagging the pro-EU camp from talking about immigration.

Corporate lobbyist Roland Rudd, who was a central figure in the campaign to Remain in the EU, has said allowing No10 to "dictate" their referendum messaging was "a huge mistake."

He claimed: "There was sort of shut down from No10 that no one was to talk about immigration and that was a huge mistake."

In a direct attack on live TV, Mr Rudd claimed "our biggest mistake" was to "allow the dead hand of Downing Street to really dictate the campaign".
[Site link]

Population pressure – air pollution, traffic accidents
Air pollution could be to blame for hundreds of traffic accidents, warn researchers
Sarah Knapton
Daily Telegraph, 3 October 2016.

Air pollution could be responsible for hundreds of car accidents a year, according to the London School of Economics.

A study looking a five years of data showed that when levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) rise just one microgramme per cubic metre, the number of collisions rises by two per cent.

Although it might seem that effect could be explained by more traffic on the roads, and therefore more pollution and more accidents, the researchers found that the increase remained even when adjusting for the extra traffic.

Instead, they believe that the toxic air impairs driver fitness, while watery eyes and an itchy nose could also be distracting for motorists.

A recent study found that air pollution inside a car can be more than double that on the outside because the NO2 builds up in a small space. ...

However other experts were more sceptical about the link between air pollution and accidents.

AA president Edmund King said: "If you think about areas which are high in air pollution they are a lot busier, with taxis and buses and lorries and where you have a greater mix of traffic you tend to have more accidents. ..."
[Site link]

Racism – Black Lives Matter UK
Five Reasons Black Lives Matter Failed in the UK
Sarah Peace
The Huffington Post, 3 October 2016.
[The author is an Art and Politics postgraduate student at Goldsmiths]

The 'Black' in Black Lives Matter: That is, the question of which blacks are represented in BLM. Blackness as an identifier may have been ascribed by Arab and European imperialists but today seems most resonant among Americans. Africans see their identities primarily through a tribal lens than a racial one - beyond that, as citizens of their home nations; and lastly, as Africans, before black, which makes it difficult to apply the implication of race across a universal category. An attempt to stage a BLM protest in Senegal in July was banned. Black antislavery activists in Mauritania continue to be imprisoned for challenging the Arab enslavement of blacks in Africa, but similarly to situations where non-whites perpetuate violence, this does not appear to be a priority for BLM. ...

African women for the most part still see their domestication as a source of power, not powerlessness and to be a stay-at-home married mother remains an aspiration, even for the most well-read women. Women desperately require legislation to combat gendered violence - but it is necessary to highlight the contrast between the world of the African immigrant to Britain and the imported American Black Lives Matter movement and its failure to resonate with black Africans. ...

Decolonisation: The most pertinent factor is the premise on which BLMUK and contemporary anti-racist movements are built: the insistence on looking at the world through an 'oppressed' and 'privileged' binary, where descriptors such as 'underprivileged' have come to be synonymous with anything other than white. The embracing of intersectionality and identity politics as a means to decolonise the world has pushed BLMUK to a position whereby it fails to recognise that it exists partly because the world it inhabits is already free. Albeit a starkly unequal one, but a free one nonetheless, making organising around decolonisation akin to kicking down open doors.

While young activists in the west have adopted a vocabulary of phrases such as 'oppression,' 'marginalisation' and 'crisis', African immigrants often have first-hand experiences of what these words can mean, and as such, are less hesitant to throw them around unwarranted.

BLMUK's flirtation with communism and caliphates, while demonstrating disdain for capitalism and the west is at odds with the experience of African migrants, many of whom escape from failed states in order to realise dreams made possible by the very factors which are undermined by BLMUK.

While Africans would unanimously support the original aims of BLM, few are convinced by their actions and rhetoric. Indeed, there are urgent challenges faced by African migrants to the UK but many doubt that BLMUK is competent enough to attend to any of those, given its juvenile tactics and campaigns based on exaggerated figures, which have served to alienate, rather than capture the hearts and minds of the UK's black African populace.
[Site link]

Repatriation/deportation – criminals
Revealed: Whitehall's plan to rid the country of foreign criminals
Ben Riley-Smith
Sunday Telegraph, 2 October 2016.

Thousands of foreign criminals "free-riding" on Britain's prisons face being sent home in the coming years as part of a new deportation drive being planned across Whitehall. ...

Ministers hope the UK's generous aid budget and the political access it brings can be used to convince countries to repatriate more citizens when they break the law in Britain. ...

In its most extreme form, nations that receive large amounts of foreign aid but repeatedly fail to improve the quality of their prisons could be threatened with future cuts. ...

There are close to 10,000 foreign nationals in Britain's prisons, according to a recent House of Commons briefing, with each space costing the taxpayer around £40,000 a year. ...

David Cameron made repeated efforts to try to improve the government's record at deporting foreign criminals, including helping to fund new prisons in other countries.

But, in what proved to be the final months of his premiership, Mr Cameron admitted before a Commons select committee that he "should have done better" on the issue.
[Site link]

Illegal immigration – border security, English Channel
'We need BULLDOG SPIRIT' Top general calls for Marines to defend Channel from migrants
Marco Giannangeli
Sunday Express, 2 October 2016.

One of Britain's most respected military generals last night backed calls for the Royal Marines to defend the English Channel against illegal migrants making the crossing by boat.

Maj General Julian Thompson, a former Royal Marine who led British ground forces in the retaking of the Falkland Islands in 1982, warned that the Government "can no longer afford to delay" taking action to halt the increasing number of unauthorised dinghies washing up on British shores. ...

Gen Thompson said indications by presidential hopeful Nicholas Sarkozy that he would push Britain's border with France back from Calais to Dover would "only exacerbate the problem".

"We have only five Border Force cutters to patrol our entire coastline. But one is in the Aegean Sea while another is usually in dry dock for maintenance. That leaves just three to patrol the 700 miles between Cornwall and East Anglia, let alone the whole 11,000 miles of Britain's coastline," he said.

"The EU will not and cannot stop these smugglers."

Urging Teresa May to adopt the "Falklands Spirit" he said Britain could not afford to wait until next year for promised additional vessels. ...

"Key to the Falklands Victory was the use of STUFT Ships: "Ships Taken Up From Trade" – merchantmen of all sorts.

"We need STUFT Ships now. We could requisition a dozen fast, twin-engined civilian sea-going motor cruisers, and equip them with gun mountings, military radars and communications systems. The RN or Royal Naval Reserve can crew them. ...

"We need to do this next week, not next year."

To enhance Channel traffic Control radars, six Britten Norman Islander aircraft, fitted with electronic surveillance equipment, should also be bought or leased, along with pilots, he added.

Aerostat balloons, cheaper than helicopters or drones and able to scan 37 miles to the nearest French ports and beaches, could used to plug gaps in maritime surveillance.
[Site link]

Politics – Labour Party
Alastair Campbell: New Labour helped sow seeds of Brexit vote
Daniel Boffey
Guardian / Observer, 2 October 2016.

Alastair Campbell has admitted that his newly published diaries show clearly how New Labour sowed the seeds of the UK's vote to leave the European Union by failing to respond to growing concerns over immigration.

The former Downing Street director of communications said he feared the party became complacent on the issue due to Tony Blair's electoral success, allowing the debate to shift in favour of a pro-Brexit vote in the EU referendum years later. ...

"I think deep down we always felt despite the difficulties we would be able to persuade people of the benefits of immigration and the benefits of the EU. We did to a large extent but where we are now, on both issues, suggests that we did not cement the political views we were putting forward."

The diaries, Campbell's fifth volume and available from Thursday, record Blair's pollster Philip Gould raising immigration as a key factor in loss of support for Labour as early as 2004.
[Site link]

Racism – multiculturalism
The Good Immigrant edited by Nikesh Shukla review – racial identity in the UK
Sukhdev Sandhu
The Observer, 2 October 2016.

And so, crowdfunded in just three days (including a pledge of £5,000 from JK Rowling), comes this collection of 21 essays: "a document of what it means to be a person of colour now".

Small-town memoirs, critiques of the cultural assumptions of children's books, sociological accounts of the impact of caste on diasporic communities, speculative histories about white T-shirts being imported to this country via Somali and Yemeni dockworkers in the early 20th century: the voices here are younger rather than older, mostly English, those of digital natives or at least those comfortable flexing their identities across the shifting terrain of social media.

There are a number of fine essays. ...

The soft power of US popular culture has had an impact on many of the book's contributors. /.../ The reality of Britain is vibrant multiculturalism, but the myth we export is an all-white world of Lords and Ladies. Conversely, American society is pretty segregated, but the myth they export is of a racial melting pot solving crimes and fighting aliens side by side." Leaving aside counterexamples (Luther, the far from monocultural Lewis), it may be that a totem of post-1980s cultural studies – the link between media representations of social groups and their political representation – has been oversold. ...

Reading The Good Immigrant, it's hard to imagine that after the second world war many Poles, Ukrainians and Hungarians moved to the UK. The lives and loves of Irish settlers and of the Roma are far less documented than those coming from South Asia or the Caribbean. Today a good number of immigrants are from eastern Europe: they often take up low-paid manual jobs, are accused (not infrequently by black people and Asians) of being parasites and thieves, and are – post-Brexit – increasingly liable to be attacked. The idea, tacitly promoted by this essay collection, that their whiteness confers on them any kind of distinction, privilege or cultural centrality is unsustainable.
[Site link]

Politics – Labour Party
Jeremy Corbyn could heal Labour's immigration divide. Sadly, he's doing the opposite
Jonathan Freedland
The Guardian, 1 October 2016.

In this haze of obfuscation, Jeremy Corbyn shines bright as a beacon of clarity. /.../ but on the intimately related issue of free movement he made his position crystal clear this week. In so doing, he confirmed that immigration has emerged as the defining dividing line in his fractious party.

Corbyn's stance is admirable and principled. ...

It is a noble case, a rare defence of migrants, a group routinely maligned. The trouble is, Corbyn's stance is directly at odds with large swaths of his own party: those who would think of themselves as Labour realists. /.../ They are united in believing that the verdict of the electorate is now unmistakable. The voters want immigration controlled, they declared that loud and clear on 23 June and they can be ignored no longer.

I confess I find myself deeply torn on this most radioactive of topics. ...

And yet, I cannot ignore what Rayner, Reeves and the rest are saying. None of them is a racist. None hates migrants. None of them would, I believe, be calling for increased controls on immigration if they could see another option. But they are simply listening to what has become the settled will of the people they represent.

This divide goes deeper than just immigration. It touches on class and geography too. ...

... For many, free movement is the price that has to be paid for the prize of single market membership. Corbyn's position is: let's give up the prize, but keep paying the price. At a stroke, he angers both Labour's remainers and its leavers, depriving both of what they cherish most. Whatever the opposite of a political sweet spot is, Corbyn has found it. ...

... What if it's not just the strain on services and pressure on pay that makes people fear immigration? What if it's actually more nebulous, and more toxic, questions of culture and identity that lie at the heart of this matter?

Easing the shortage of homes or GP appointments and boosting wages would certainly draw some of the sting from the immigration question. Government should take those steps. But it's optimistic to imagine that such action would dispel all the rage MPs such as Reeves are encountering every day. It amounts to telling voters that they don't understand their own feelings, that their concern over the changing face of their communities is simply an error, a case of false consciousness that will recede with a sufficient injection of public cash.
[Site link]

Immigration – Conservative Party
Mass migration lowers wages by £450 and 'DOES NOT work for British people'
Laura Mowat
Daily Express, 1 October 2016.

An MP has lashed out about the UK's desperate need to control EU immigration as he reveals it lowers wages by £450 for the working class and has called for a "renaissance" for the towns and regions of Britain.

The MP for Dover, Charlie Elphicke, was speaking in the House of Commons to bring in a bill to implement the withdrawal of the UK from the EU when he said that British people "are deeply concerned about the level of uncontrolled EU immigration".

He added: "They were told, and it was pledged in manifestos, that net migration would be brought down to tens of thousands, but last year the figure was 330,000."

The 45-year-old politician said that research conducted by the Resolution Foundation shows that mass migration has caused wages to be about £450 lower for the hard working classes of Britain.

He said: "According to the foundation, if we did succeed in bringing migration down to tens of thousands, they would have a pay rise."

He also referred to work by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) which states that mass migration "does not benefit the people of Britain or those in the rest of the world".
[Site link]

Immigration abroad – Nigerians, Italy
Sex slavery: 12,000 Nigerian women hit Italy by sea in two years
Larry Nwabuoku
OnlineNigeria, 1 October 2016.

... one of around 12,000 Nigerian women who reached Italy by sea over the past two years, official data shows.

That is a six-fold increase over the previous two-year period. Young, exhausted and vulnerable, many victims report being told that prostitution is the only way to repay hefty debts ranging from 25,000 to 100,000 euros ($28,000-$112,000) to their traffickers, Italian charities say. ...

... With numbers of Nigerians rising in Sicily, prostitution is a thriving business, campaigners say though nobody knows exactly how many women end up plying their trade on the streets. ...

More than 13,500 unaccompanied minors – some from Nigeria – were "reached" by social workers in 2013 and 2014, with around 9,200 taken into Italian state care, according to a report commissioned by the interior ministry. ...

The number of Nigerian women arriving in Italy has almost doubled in the past year, surpassing 6,300 in the first eight months of 2016, up from 3,400 for the same period last year, according to the IOM. Unaccompanied children from Nigeria – some as young as 10 or 11 – have also flocked to Italy. Around 1,700 arrived in the first eight months of this year, while 1,000 came during the whole of 2015, the IOM data shows.
[Site link]

Immigration – public opinion, cultural change, national identity
Assimilation and the immigration debate: shifting people's attitudes
Eric Kaufmann
LSE / British Politics and Policy, 1 October 2016.
[Eric Kaufmann is Professor of Politics at Birkbeck College, University of London]

In a hard-hitting piece in a recent Fabians' report by senior Labour figures, Facing the Unknown, pollster James Morris writes that Labour must engage with the genuine concerns many ordinary Britons have about immigration. However, Labour's leaders continue to deflect concerns onto the comfortable terrain of public spending and local planning. /.../ Unfortunately, academic research suggests these policies will have little or no effect on the public's view of immigration.

The consensus from scholarly research across the West is that cultural, not economic, motivations are central for those who want lower immigration. Immigration strips away the hazy illusion in the minds of many White Britons that their group is more or less the same thing as Britain. This ethnicises the majority, notably those who cherish their cultural traditions, myths and memories.

In response, politicians from Gordon Brown to David Cameron have articulated a centralised Britishness based on common values and institutions. But the question politicians need to be asking is not, 'What does it mean to be British,' but rather 'What does it mean to be White British' in an age of migration. This is not racist, but reflects the fact that all ethnic groups – including the majority – want their community to have a future.

One liberal way groups perpetuate themselves is by assimilating others who wish to join. ...

Having written about this following UKIP's ascent in 2014, I was curious whether knowing these facts might change the way White British people think about immigration. To find out, I conducted a survey, but split it into three random groups. All answered questions about immigration, but two of the groups were assigned to read a short passage about national identity. ...

... When White British respondents read a story about change and diversity, this made them slightly more worried about immigration than when they read no passage. But when they read about how immigrants are assimilating into their ethnic group, they became noticeably more relaxed. ...

It's also the case that national identity is not monolithic but in the eye of the beholder: some members of minority groups may prefer to see Britain as ever-changing while conservative white Britons consider it a timeless river. It's up to politicians to reach out to both with a different message, secure in the knowledge there is no single way of perceiving the nation.
[Site link]

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