Dave Smith
Weekly Roundup of Refugee News 4.2.21

Asylum / refugees / immigration (UK)


Napier barracks news is grouped together below 

Metro: Priti Patel slammed for ‘sweeping accusations’ over ‘deliberate’ fire at asylum site

Home Secretary Priti Patel has clashed with refugee charities after a suspected arson at a virus-hit military barracks where hundreds of asylum seekers have been living.



Guardian: Asylum seekers tell of dire conditions at Kent barracks after fire

Asylum seekers at a former army barracks have said they have been left without electricity, heating and drinking water since a fire broke out on Friday, while volunteers say they have been blocked from providing donations. Fourteen men have been arrested in connection with the fire, which Kent police say they believe was started deliberately. One of the men has been charged with assault.



Kent Online: Activists throw fake blood at gates of Napier Barracks to send message to Home Office

Activists have today thrown fake blood at the gates of Napier Barracks - where hundreds of asylum seekers are living - in protest over the conditions there. The anonymous group of human right activists dressed in white boiler suits and masks and erected posters addressed to Home Secretary Priti Patel outside the military camp in Folkestone.



Independent: ‘It’s censorship’: Journalist arrested after photographing protest outside controversial asylum camp

A journalist has been arrested after taking and sharing photographs of activists protesting against the conditions in a controversial military camp housing hundreds of asylum seekers in Kent.

Freelance photographer Andy Aitchison, 46, attended a demonstration outside Napier Barracks, in Folkestone, on Thursday morning and took photos as protesters threw buckets of fake blood at the gates of the site. The images were later used in local press reports.



Independent: Home Office put refugees in barracks after fears better housing would ‘undermine confidence’ in system

The Home Office placed hundreds of asylum seekers in controversial military barracks following fears that better accommodation would "undermine confidence" in the system, internal documents reveal.



Church Times: It is unsafe and inhumane to house asylum-seekers in military barracks

LAST week, there was a Covid-19 outbreak among people seeking asylum housed at Napier Barracks, in Folkestone. This outbreak happened because asylum-seekers were forced to live in cramped and unsanitary accommodation.



BBC: Faith leaders oppose Yarl's Wood asylum seeker prefab plans

More than 40 faith group leaders have written to the government opposing plans to build temporary accommodation to house about 200 asylum seekers beside Yarl's Wood immigration removal centre in Bedfordshire.



Sky News: 'Stansted 15' protestors who stopped Home Office deportation flight have convictions overturned

Protesters taken to court after stopping a deportation flight taking off from Stansted Airport have had their convictions overturned by the Court of Appeal.



Guardian: Slavery survivors moved ‘without notice, without reason’ in London lockdown

Modern slavery survivors with young children were among refugees allegedly forced to move accommodation in London with as little as one day’s notice during coronavirus lockdowns this winter.

Women who are among the UK’s most vulnerable refugees and asylum seekers said they were given just 24 hours to pack before being moved.



Politico: UK’s post-Brexit immigration rules target European homeless

EU citizens living in the U.K. have until June 30 to apply to remain in the country beyond Brexit. However, that's unlikely to help vulnerable groups such as rough sleepers, children in care, victims of trafficking and others who lack sufficient documentation.

New U.K. immigration rules, in place as of December 1, 2020, make rough sleeping grounds for refusal or cancellation of permission to stay in the U.K. https://www.politico.eu/article/uk-post-brexit-immigration-laws-european-homeless-people/


Asylum / refugees / immigration (international) 

Irish Legal: Asylum seekers to gain access to labour market sooner

Asylum seekers will be able to seek work in Ireland six months after making their application for international protection under new rules announced today. Applicants previously had to wait nine months to apply for permission to work. They will now be able to apply after six months and their permission to work will last for 12 months rather than six months.



Aljazeera: ‘Starting from zero’: In Greece, refugee women forge new careers

In recent years, Greece has become a focal point for refugees into the European Union, but many of the women who have arrived are portrayed by the media in a stereotypical manner.



Guardian: 'This is literally an industry': drone images give rare look at for-profit Ice detention centers in The USA.

“Imagine how it feels there, locked up, the whole day without catching the air, without … seeing the light, because that is a cave there, in there you go crazy; without being able to see my family, just being able to listen to them on a phone and be able to say, ‘OK, bye,’ because the calls are expensive.”