Britain’s treatment of asylum seekers shameful: commission

March 27th, 2008 - 7:05 pm ICT by admin  

London, March 27 (DPA) An independent commission Thursday branded Britain’s treatment of asylum seekers as marred by inhumanity, saying the way the country treated persons seeking asylum was not fit for a civilised society. The treatment of asylum seekers fell “seriously below the standards to be expected of a humane and civilized society,” the report by the Independent Asylum Commission said. The interim report was handed over to the British Home Office Thursday by a group of asylum seekers.

The commission was set up one year ago by request of communities and charity organizations and was tasked to investigate the British authorities’ handling of removals as well as the decision process leading up to granting asylum.

It was shameful that asylum seekers were treated that unfairly in Britain, a country with a deeply ingrained basic instinct for fair play, the report said. A culture of disbelief led to “unfair and perverse decisions,” it said.

In a clear violation of regulations even torture or rape victims were removed from the country. On the other hand, the system also failed in removing those who did not deserve to be granted sanctuary, the report said.

More often than not, the reason for these failures to provide asylum seekers with a fair treatment was not malice, but a deeply entrenched lack of resources, commission co-chair Sir John Waite said.

The former judge at London’s Appeals Court said the commission would present recommendations to rectify problems in upcoming publications.

The British Border and Immigration Agency, however, rejected the report’s findings.

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