Asylum seekers: something we can agree on?
There is one implication of today’s immigration statistics that might see the TUC and the Government in agreement. The number of asylum applications in the second quarter of 2010 was down by nearly a third, from 6,110 in the same quarter of 2009 to 4,365. And the main reason was that the number of people from Zimbabwe applying for asylum fell from 1,560 between April and June 2009, to 405 in the second quarter of 2010.
Robert Mugabe’s ZANU regime was driving one person an hour to seek asylum in the UK – now it’s down to four or five people a day. The lesson which I suspect both the Government and the TUC would draw from this is that we need an active foreign and development policy that improves economic and political conditions in developing countries. A better Zimbabwe means fewer asylum seekers.