Refugees: Children

Home Office written question – answered on 12th September 2017.

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Photo of Tommy Sheppard Tommy Sheppard Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Cabinet Office), Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Scotland), Shadow SNP Spokesperson (House of Lords)

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps she is taking together with the French Government to reduce the level of unnecessary force used by the police in that country against child refugees and to ensure the protection of unaccompanied child refugees seeking a place of safety in the UK.

Photo of Brandon Lewis Brandon Lewis The Minister for Immigration

The responsibility for maintaining law and order in France lies with the French government.

No one should live in makeshift camps in Calais, which is why we continue to work closely with the French authorities on border security and migration issues, including helping to fund alternative facilities elsewhere in France for Calais migrants provided by the French government. However, the primary responsibility for unaccompanied children lies with the authorities in the country in which children are present. The UK government does not have the authority to operate unauthorised on the territory of another sovereign state.

The UK is also proud to have transferred over 750 children from France to the UK last year as a result of the Calais camp clearance, and we continue to work with the French authorities to transfer unaccompanied children who may be eligible under the Dublin Regulation or section 67 of the Immigration Act 2016.

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