Former MEP and anti-immigrant protagonist, Nigel Farage, has taken a swipe at UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson and Home Secretary, Priti Patel, over what he has described as a ‘post-Brexit immigration mess.’ As of 1 January 2021, the UK entered into a new relationship with the EU following the completion of the Brexit transition period.
However, in a column for The Telegraph, Farage took aim at Johnson and Patel for failing to handle continued illegal immigrant crossings in the Channel. Writing in The Telegraph, Mr Farage said: “Reducing UK immigration numbers remains a key issue for Tory voters.
“2021 is not even a week old and already the first illegal immigrants have arrived at the Port of Dover,” Farage added.
Priti Patel claims
Farage’s comments come following claims made by Priti Patel that the Channel crossings crisis is now ‘under control’ and that Brexit will reduce UK immigration levels. Meanwhile, the former MEP also blasted so-called ‘celebrity do-gooders’ and ‘lefty lawyers’, who signed an open letter in November urging officials to cancel a deportation flight to Jamaica.
In August 2020, a Home Office video posted on Twitter also accused activist immigration lawyers of helping to protect murderers and rapists from deportation, with Patel and Johnson defending the video, sparking a furious backlash from legal professionals who demanded an apology.
Remarks made by Patel and Johnson targeting immigration and human rights lawyers were also blamed for a knife attack on an immigration law firm.
In his Telegraph column, Farage wrote: “Convinced of the evil intent of the government following the Windrush scandal, do-gooder celebrities and politicians managed to help prevent several deportations from going ahead.”
The former MEP said that he acknowledged Ms Patel’s understanding of the ‘importance’ of border controls.
According to Farage, based on comments made in 2020, the ‘official’ number of people arriving on Britain’s shores in inflatable dinghies had reached 8,500.
Tougher immigration powers
Despite the launch of Britain’s tough post-Brexit immigration system on 1 January 2021, Patel has vowed to use ‘even tougher powers to keep the UK safe and protect the country’s security’ following Brexit.
In a recent column for The Telegraph, Ms Patel wrote: “The Brexit deal gives our police and security services the tools and partnerships to help keep the public safe. Having left the EU we can give these agencies stronger powers to keep this country safe. That includes banning foreign criminals who have served more than a year in jail from entering the UK.”
Patel added that there would also be a crackdown on illegal immigration to the UK, while Britain’s ‘broken’ asylum system has also been targeted for reform.
However, Farage warned Patel that she faces a problem now that the UK asylum claims are no longer handled in accordance with the Dublin regulation, which allowed UK immigration authorities to send people back to EU countries in which they had already made an asylum claim.
Farage said: “The problem for the Home Secretary is that, with Britain leaving the EU, the Dublin regulations have expired and have not been replaced with anything else. The French have successfully stalled us, so what will the British government do?”
“It could simply return to France those who arrive in the UK illegally, but I see a legal problem here too,” Farage added.
The former MEP explained that the UK had agreed to remain part of the European Human Rights Act, and should Britain violate the terms of the act, the EU is within its rights to terminate the entire trade agreement reached on Christmas Eve, according to Farage.
He said: “This is the mess in which Britain now finds itself. As things stand, the government will continue to face legal challenges if it tries to deport convicted criminals and the cross-Channel migrant route will be as busy as it was last year.”
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