Urgent Question on Calais Jungle

Genuine refugees fleeing danger should stay in the country they come to first and not have to be taken to the UK to be processed, an MP has said.

Shipley MP Philip Davies questioned Home Secretary Amber Rudd on why people would need to come to Britain given France is a safe country.

Speaking in the Commons as the Home Secretary addressed MPs following France’s announcement it is going to shut down the “jungle” camp in Calais, Mr Davies said: “Why do genuine refugees need to come from France to the UK to be properly processed and looked after. Why can’t France process people’s asylum applications what is so terrible about refugees living in France? Why do they have to come to the UK?

“Can the Home Secretary explain why these people are so desperate to get out of a safe country in France and into the United Kingdom?”

Mr Davies said if the UK was trying to “palm off” our refugees to another EU country the Labour Party would be up in arms about it.

It is thought hundreds of child refugees stuck in Calais will come to Britain in the coming months with the first 100 or so unaccompanied children arriving in the next few weeks.

Mrs Rudd said: “We do have a legal obligation under the Dublin agreement whereby children who have demonstrated that they have family over here are entitled to come here. But that process goes through the host French Government so they have to apply for that right within France.”

Earlier this year Lord Alf Dubs’ amendment to allow unaccompanied children to be offered safe refuge in the UK was supported by the Commons.

Mrs Rudd added: “In terms of any additional children that we do wish to take, again, that battle has been fought in terms of the Dub’s amendment and we intend to act on it.”