The UK Border Agency is to set up a £4m "reintegration centre" in Afghanistan so that it can start deporting unaccompanied child asylum seekers to Kabul from Britain, the Guardian can disclose.Oh, this caused Twitter to almost melt down this morning! All the usual suspects were frothing with Righteous indignation.
And it’s not just children:
The terms of the official tender for the centre show that immigration officials initially hope to forcibly return 12 boys a month aged under 18 to Afghanistan and provide "reintegration assistance" for 120 adults a month.About time too!
A decision to start deporting Afghan child asylum seekers who arrive in Britain alone would amount to a major shift in policy. Up until now, child protection issues and an undertaking that failed child asylum seekers would be returned only if adequate reception and care arrangements were in place for them on arrival have blocked returns.Well, ‘major shifts in policy’ were the main reason we elected this bunch, wasn’t it?
And the left can’t squeal too much – this is not just any immigration proposal, this is an EU immigration proposal…
The British plans form part of a wider European move to plan the return of unaccompanied migrant children to Afghanistan. Norway has also announced plans to open a reception centre in Kabul. Sweden, Denmark and the Netherlands are also reported to be preparing to return Afghan children to Kabul.Heh! Let’s see them argue against that!
Of course, with their cushy sinecures on the line, the first to whinge are those making a nice living out of the situation:
The development has sounded the alarm among refugee welfare and human rights organisations that the EU has given a green light to move ahead with deportations with too little being done to guarantee the safety of the children sent back.And too little to guarantee the huge salaries that some are earning from these organisations…
Simone Troller of Human Rights Watch said: "Before deporting vulnerable kids to places like Afghanistan, EU governments need to make sure it is in the children's best interests."Well, no. They need to make sure it’s in the best interests of the countries and their citizens, actually.
The Refugee Council said ministers should urgently review the plans to start removing unaccompanied minors to countries that are not safe. Its chief executive, Donna Covey, said: "There has been little said about how these children would be kept safe … if they have no family to whom they can be returned safely, should they be returned at all?"Aha! The mask slips, and the Open Borders advocate stands revealed…