Human rights groups are attempting to force the British government’s hand over the fate of 114 illegal migrants who landed on the shores of a military base, which could prove to be a major test case for immigration to the United Kingdom.
The four boatloads of migrants who illegally landed on Cyprus in October and found themselves grounded on British sovereign territory of military base RAF Akrotiri are now the focus of a human rights campaign, which could prove to be a major game-changer for migrants worldwide. At the moment migrants generally try to reach Britain before claiming asylum there, but should the 114 illegals presently being held in Cyprus be given right to remain, it could set a precedent that might see British military bases around the globe besieged by migrants.
At the moment the British and Cypriot governments are in stalemate over the fate of the refugees, with the present settlement seeing them relocated away from UK territory. The British government then would pay Cyprus to house and feed the so-called ‘refugees’, but this is not good enough according to the human rights lawyers who have got their teeth stuck into the case.
London based solicitor Tessa Gregory of law firm Leigh Day said of the British government’s reticence to accept the migrants: “Since their arrival on British soil, the UK government has denied responsibility for the group and sought to outsource its obligations under international law to Cyprus.
“After being detained and threatened with deportation, our clients have agreed under protest to have their asylum claims processed by the Cypriot authorities. But we maintain that they are the UK’s responsibility and that it is the UK who has to ensure their rights as refugees are secured and protected.
“The UK government cannot shirk these responsibilities, under the refugee convention, in the middle of the worst refugee crisis since world war two.
“We believe such conduct is contrary to the letter and spirit of the convention and our clients will be seeking a judicial review of the government’s actions in January”.
The involvement of human rights lawyers comes after the migrants now living on the base decided to take matters into their own hands, committing self-harm and burning their tents to gain attention from the authorites. Breitbart London reported in November on the group of 67 men, 19 women and 28 children, some of whom reportedly were demanding they be given asylum in the UK itself, while others wanted to go to Germany.