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Campaigners pressure Tory ministers over Nationality and Borders Bill

TORY ministers are facing pressure from campaigners and the opposition benches in Westminster over the government’s Nationality and Borders Bill. 

The SNP has taken action to stop the Tories’ proposed anti-refugee law in its tracks, which is set to punish vulnerable people and refugees seeking asylum.

The Nationality and Borders Bill, discussed in Westminster today, would strip many refugees of rights to a family reunion, support and to settle permanently, as well as criminalise many for seeking protection in Britain with sentences of up to four years. 

The plans could also see accommodation such as the Napier Barracks and Penally sites become the norm across Britain, as well as criminalise those who are deemed to be “assisting unlawful immigration.”

The RMT has warned that this could put non-asylum humanitarian services such as the Royal National Lifeboat Institution at risk of prosecution.

The SNP’s home affairs spokesperson, Stuart McDonald MP, has tabled an amendment that declines to give the Bill a second reading, with the proposals widely criticised by charities. 

Mr McDonald said: “The Tory government’s Nationality and Borders Bill is nothing more than a hateful anti-refugee Bill that breaches the UK’s international obligations — it must be condemned in the strongest possible manner. 

“By sticking by this Bill, [Home Secretary] Priti Patel is defending criminalising torture victims, victims of war crimes, persecuted Christian converts and other refugees for seeking our protection.” 

The Scottish Refugee Council has written to Scotland’s MPs urging them to vote the Bill down. 

Chief executive Sabir Zazai described the Bill as the biggest threat to refugee rights in Britain seen for decades, claiming that it directly undermines the UN Refugee Convention, of which Britain is a founding signatory.


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