Senior Tories believe that Rishi Sunak can win the next election – by ending the Channel migrants crisis using tough laws. Suella Braverman will set out much-heralded legislation on Tuesday to prevent anyone who reaches the UK in one of the tide of small boats from claiming asylum here.
Lee Anderson, the Tories’ deputy chairman, said that the Prime Minister and Home Secretary are “pulling out all the stops” to tackle the issue.
The Ashfield MP claimed that closing off the mass arrival of migrants could prove to be an election winner for the party.
He added: “It puts a clear dividing line between us and Labour.”
Ministers will be handed a duty to “detain and swiftly remove” anyone who lands on Britain’s shores via the Channel boats crossings.
While Ms Braverman pledged: “The Prime Minister and I will do whatever it takes. You can judge us by our actions.”
Mr Anderson said: “Since the small boat crisis started I have continually asked for illegal immigrants to be removed straight away.
“We now have a Prime Minister who supports this idea and is pulling out all the stops to make it happen. Migrants in the camps told me that if they were removed from the UK as soon as they arrived then they would not bother coming.
“Seems like Rishi gets this and the vast majority of the country is behind him.”
Ex-Cabinet minister Jacob Rees-Mogg said the crackdown depended on if the European Court of Human Rights would be able to hijack or sabotage UK law: “It needs to be effective in relation to our courts.”
The PM has said “stopping the boats” is one of his five priorities. He meets President Emmanuel Macron in Paris on Friday for the first UK-France summit since 2018. It is said they will discuss the crisis.
Mr Sunak said: “Make no mistake, if you come here illegally, you will not be able to stay.
“Illegal migration is not fair on British taxpayers, it is not fair on those who come here legally and it is not right that criminal gangs should be allowed to continue their immoral trade. I am determined to deliver on my promise.”
Asylum seekers currently have the right to remain in the UK to have their case heard.
Under new laws, people who arrive in small boats will be stopped from claiming asylum, then sent to Rwanda or a “safe third country” and banned from ever returning.
Ms Braverman said: “Enough is enough. The British people want this solved. They’re sick of tough talk and inadequate action.
“Myself and the Prime Minister have been working flat out to bring forward necessary and effective laws. If you come here illegally you will be detained and swiftly removed. Our laws will be simple in their intention and practice.
“The only route to the UK will be a safe and legal route.”
She claimed Labour was trying to wreck bids to curb illegal migration: “They are not serious about tackling the issue that is only becoming ever more serious and allows criminal gangs to exploit vulnerable people.”
Tory MP Matt Vickers said: “Many residents see controlling our borders as a priority and want to see this Bill brought forward.”
The Home Office said there are “safe and legal” routes to the UK for migrants from countries such as Afghanistan and Ukraine, or for British National status holders in Hong Kong.
Other routes allow limited refugees under precise criteria.
Northern Ireland Secretary Chris Heaton-Harris told Sky: “There’ll be more safe and legal routes. They’ve been proven to work. We should welcome people to come through those routes.”
He told the BBC that new laws are just one part of the response to the problem: “We need a full range of things in our arsenal.”
Some 2,950 migrants have crossed the Channel this year.
Campaigners have attacked the Government’s plans and the Rwanda deportation scheme has yet to begin due to legal challenges.
Labour’s Shadow Work Secretary Jonathan Ashworth said the Tories “will say they are going to do this, that and the other, but they never deliver, do they?”.
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