Immigration and Asylum

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Home Department – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 8th January 2001.

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Photo of Mrs Barbara Roche Mrs Barbara Roche Minister of State, Home Office 12:00 am, 8th January 2001

My hon. Friend makes an important point about the Opposition's lack of consistency. Time and again, the Opposition—and the right hon. Member for Maidstone and The Weald in particular—forget that this is a European issue. The European figures per head of population show that we are about eighth in asylum applications. It is right that we have a system in place that makes sure that we give asylum, sanctuary and protection to those who are genuinely fleeing persecution. In the year in which we commemorate the 50th anniversary of the UN convention on refugees, it is important that we have proper proposals to deal with those who are making unfounded applications.