Thursday, October 21, 2021

BBC documentary to look at migrants’ Channel crossing claims

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Media playback is not supported on this device Labour will investigate claims government block Turkish passports

Campaigners for refugees are to start filming a BBC documentary later this month which they believe will show the number of migrants crossing the English Channel will almost double.

There are currently 7,637 refugees living in Channel camps.

The footage will feature two families, who say British officials restricted their asylum claims.

“We feel like we were stolen from Turkey to the UK,” one of the families tells the BBC.

They are Turkish nationals who travelled to the UK in 2016 to try to claim asylum.

They were eventually granted permission to remain by the UK government, but were detained for eight months.

It emerged during their detention that a child had been separated from her family – and that no system was in place to keep track of her. The child was reunited with her parents last month.

Both the refugees were sent letters from the Home Office stating they were no longer in need of protection – a decision that they believe is in breach of the human rights of refugees.

They are now campaigning for permission to keep filming the documentary.

“The only reason they told us not to film is because it could jeopardise their case in court,” one of the family says.

The documentary has been supported by English PEN, a literary rights group.

Earlier this month, Amnesty International and the group No Borders screened a documentary in Birmingham claiming the UK government is blocking Turks from getting passports to come to the UK.

The Home Office denies the claim, and says the UK Border Agency deals with appeals against refusal of asylum “in strictest confidence”.

The documentary will be broadcast on 21 February.

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