Sunak: ‘If you come here illegally, you can’t claim asylum’

By Flora Thompson, Sophie Wingate, Sam Blewett, David Hughes and Patrick Daly, PA

Rishi Sunak (Leon Neal/PA) — © Leon Neal

Rishi Sunak said migrants arriving in the UK illegally will be removed “within weeks” as the Government unveiled plans for fresh laws to curb Channel crossings.

The Prime Minister also confirmed the Illegal Migration Bill – to stop people claiming asylum in the UK if they arrive through unauthorised means – will apply “retrospectively” if passed.

Unveiling the plans in the Commons earlier, Home Secretary Suella Braverman said asylum seekers arriving illegally will be detained and face a lifetime ban on returning after they are removed.

They will never be allowed to settle in the country or gain citizenship.

Speaking at a Downing Street press conference on Tuesday afternoon, Mr Sunak said: “People must know that if they come here illegally, it will result in their detention and swift removal.

“Once this happens, and they know it will happen, they will not come and the boats will stop.”

Mr Sunak, who visited Dover in Kent earlier in the day to mark the announcement, said the laws will make it “clear that if you come here illegally, you can’t claim asylum”, adding: “You can’t benefit from our modern slavery protection, you can’t make serious human rights claims and you can’t stay.

“We will detain those who come here illegally and then remove them in weeks, either to their own country if it is safe to do so or to a safe third country like Rwanda.

“And once you are removed, you will be banned – as you are in America and Australia – from ever re-entering our country.”

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