Home Secretary 'wrong' to question whether migrants are 'genuine', says Satbir Singh

Sajid Javid

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

The chief executive of the Joint Council for Welfare of Immigrants has said it was "wrong" of Sajid Javid to question whether migrants crossing the Channel were "genuine".

Satbir Singh appeared on the breakfast show following the news that eight migrants were in police care after an empty boat was found on a Kent beach.

"The reason we have an asylum system is so that decision makers can look at those applications and make those decisions," Mr Singh told Julia Hartley-Brewer.

"I won't pre-judge them and I don't think the Home Secretary should either."



Mr Singh claimed there could be two reasons for migrants attempting to cross the Channel into the UK.

"One is that you've got family here and it's important those applications are heard, and the other is you might speak English," he said.

The Home Secretary delivered a statement to the House of Commons yesterday, in which he announced he would everything he could to stop the "dangerous crossings".


'If I was fleeing persecution I would want to be with my family'

Three migrants attempting to cross the English Channel in an inflatable canoe. Image: Getty

"The UK doesn't allow any asylum claim to be made unless you're already on UK soil, so somebody may have entered another country and they may have family here," Mr Singh said.

"I know if I was fleeing persecution I would want to be with my family."

He added: "If somebody is the victim of trafficking, I don't think our response to that should be to leave them in the water or take them back to the trafficker."