UK plans Greek-style clampdown on migrants

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Priti Patel is planning a Greek-style crackdown on migrants, with new restrictions on asylum seekers amid an escalating European crisis.

Channel migrants held in new purpose-built reception centres will have to obey strict rules or risk losing their right to claim asylum. 

The Home Secretary plans to model the centres on the camps for asylum seekers being built by Greece, where migrants face routine checks on their movements along with curfews to prevent absconding.

“If they breach the rules, it could affect their asylum claim,” said a UK government source. “You would be told that you would have to be in by this time. That’s fair rules for operating if you provide food and accommodation. The Greeks have things like timings.”

Migrants could also be issued with “asylum apps” to track the progress of their applications on smartphones or computers in the centres. 

Ms Patel has been impressed by the way in which Greece has digitised its asylum application process from start to finish to track cases, speed up decisions and save millions on unnecessary paperwork.

It comes in the wake of the attempted bombing in Liverpool by a failed asylum seeker who was still in the UK seven years after his application was first rejected. Emad al-Swealmeen is understood to have had mental health problems that were exacerbated by the drawn-out process.

Photo – The UK Border Force vessel ‘Speedwell’ moored near the Port of Dover in Kent, Britain. EPA-EFE/NEIL HALL

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