Times publishes Migration Watch chair calling for deportation deal with Syria’s Assad

Lord Green of Deddington has some novel solutions to the Calais crisis


Today the Times has turned over a chunk of its comment pages to Lord Green of Deddington, chairman of the never-reliable Migration Watch.

Lord Green calls for ‘radical action’ over attempted migration from Calais, France, displaying his trademark penchant for vague statistics and draconian measures. 

Here he is in full steam:

“I propose, therefore, that there should be a full search of trucks as they arrive at Dover, and that migrants discovered there (or subsequently at motorway service stations) should be taken to detention centres near by.

These centres should be ‘one stop shops’ that consider any asylum claims rapidly and on site; those who fail should be held until they can be removed.

If this requires changes in the present law then so be it. Further, our huge aid programme should be used as a carrot and, if necessary, as a stick to achieve return agreements with source countries.”

Since the ‘source countries’ for most of the people tying to reach Britain are war-torn Syria and Eritrea, this presumably means using ‘our huge aid programme’ to do a deal with Bashar al-Assad and Eritrean dictator Isaias Afewerki!

It might be quicker just to kill the asylum seekers ourselves at Dover.

Meanwhile Libya – another ‘source country’ – doesn’t really have a government with which to ‘achieve a return agreement’. Is Lord Green unaware of this?

As for changing the law so we can search trucks and detain people for as long as we like, it is odd that during the noble Lord’s classical education at Cambridge he never came across the Latin term Habeas Corpus.

Lord Green then calls for the introduction of ID cards in Britain. As Nick Cohen pointed out last week, the UK is currently one of the few countries in western Europe where the state may not order you to ‘produce your papers’ without just cause. But to hell with centuries of common law rights; Lord Green wants us to hunt migrants.

He also asserts, without referencing any evidence, that

“those who claim asylum have a 75 per cent chance of staying in Britain, illegally or otherwise.”

Without knowing where he plucks this from, we can only note that so far this year 72 per cent of all asylum claims were refused – that’s nearly three quarters of all applicants. (If anyone knows where Green’s numbers come from, please email [email protected])

Lord Green ends the piece with a vague line about how all this ‘might permit a more generous response to the needs of very vulnerable Syrians in UN camps‘ – a nice recycling of the ‘deserving vs undeserving migrants’ schtick which essentially means: Syrian refugees in camps in the Middle East = good, Syrian refugees in a camp in France = bad.

In fact, the refugees in Calais, er, came from the Middle East. It’s the same people.

Pause to note: this man is a knight of the realm with a seat in the upper chamber of parliament.

Adam Barnett is a staff writer at Left Foot Forward. Follow MediaWatch on Twitter

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Read more: 

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7 Responses to “Times publishes Migration Watch chair calling for deportation deal with Syria’s Assad”

  1. stevep

    I`ve got a novel solution to the Calais “crisis”. Let them come in, give them passports and give them transport to the large estates of the landed gentry where there`s plenty of room to stay.
    A few tower blocks could be erected for accommodation and they could work on the estates, supervised by current staff.

    Linguists could be employed to translate and teach our new citizens essential words like “By Jove”, “I say”, “can`t get the bloody servants these days” and “what do you mean, the siege of Mafeking has ended?”.

    Before you can say Downton Abbey, they will be gainfully employed, happy to be here, paying taxes, serving the wealthy landed elite and as far as the rabid right rags are concerned, out of sight and out of mind.
    What`s not to like.

  2. damon

    I can’t see anywhere where he’s suggested returning people to Syria.
    As for Eritreans, what are we supposed to do? Let the whole country resettle in the EU?

    Those Christian ones who were on Songs of Praise should be going to Ethiopia before they come to the UK.

    Btw, this story is a bit grim.

    Sweden Ikea knife attack: Suspect ‘faced deportation’

  3. GhostofJimMorisson

    What landed gentry? I’m genuinely concerned about you, Steveo. You seem to be perpetually stuck in the nineteenth-century. I will, however, concede that domestic servitude is alive and well. Not on the estates of the landed-gentry (because they no longer friggin’ exist) but in the wealthy, white, upper middle class suburbs of North London in the form of Eastern European nannies and Filipino cleaners. Which is of course why the North London elite love mass immigration.

  4. Stephen52

    Asylum claims denied who stay on are estimates, as only 23% are removed:


  5. stevep

    The landed gentry are still very much alive and well, Jimbo, they still have vast estates and are still extremely wealthy. They have an umbrella organisation, The Country Landowners association to look after their interests, who employ top PR people to shape their image and promote their interests.
    They also have powerful lobby groups in Westminster to ensure they get representation.
    Don`t be fooled by the somewhat bumbling image they put over in the media, they are very much in the 21st century and running extremely sleek operations.

  6. George Carty

    Isn’t Britain’s lack of ID cards (and of compulsory residence registration) the main reason why it is such a magnet for illegal immigrants (because it means they can hide here more easily)?

    They certainly aren’t coming here for our pathetic benefits…

  7. JoeDM

    Lord Green of Deddington seems to be one of the few people of influence that is fully aware of the immigration crisis.

    Sent them back !!!

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