Refugees: Syria

Home Office written question – answered on 25th November 2015.

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Photo of Baroness Jones of Moulsecoomb Baroness Jones of Moulsecoomb Green

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Bates on 9 November (HL3457), what specific steps they are taking to help Syrian refugees in the "Jungle" camp at Calais who wish to claim asylum in the UK.

Photo of Lord Bates Lord Bates The Minister of State, Home Department

Migrants in Calais in need of protection, including Syrians, should claim asylum in France. Other than in very limited circumstances under the Dublin Regulation, where a migrant who has lodged an asylum application in another Member State has close family ties to the UK, the UK has no responsibility to help refugees who are in other EU Member States to come here to claim asylum. Consequently, there is no provision in the Immigration Rules for them to do so. However, Border Force officers and representatives from the French Government carry out regular joint communications visits to the camps, informing all nationalities of migrants of their options to seek support, including claiming asylum, in France.

The UK Government is spending £1.1 billion in and around Syria on humanitarian aid, caring for refugees and helping the Governments of Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey to cope with the huge numbers of refugees they have received. After the United States, Britain is the biggest donor country in the region. The Government has also expanded the Syrian Resettlement Scheme. This scheme is helping the most vulnerable people in the region by offering them protection in the UK. The Government intends to resettle 20,000 Syrians in need of protection during this Parliament.

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