‘Send Them Back!’ — Migration Watch UK Calls For the Deportation of Suspected Nigerian Hijackers

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 26: The Nave Andromeda in the port on October 26, 2020 in Southampton, England. The 228-metre, Liberian-registered oil tanker was carrying oil from Nigeria to the port of Southampton when it was subjected to a suspect hijacking by stowaways off the coast of the Isle of …
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Migration Watch UK called for the deportation of the suspected Nigerian illegal migrants — who allegedly seized control of an oil tanker off the coast of the Isle of White on Sunday — after two former British immigration chiefs warned that the migrants may be eligible to apply for asylum after their prospective prison sentences.

“Shockingly, if the experience of dealing with previous hijackers is anything to go by, this latest group of criminals could claim asylum and remain here for years, even if asylum is not granted,” Migration Watch chairman Alp Mehmet told Breitbart London.

“Should this happen, yet again, the rules and conventions governing asylum will have been shown to be totally unfit for purpose and in urgent need of root-and-branch reform.

“If determined young men – for that is what they are – can get away with hijacking their way into Britain, it will act as an open invitation to others to do the same,” Mehmet warned.

“Like we have seen with those crossing the Channel illegally to claim asylum, the route will see numbers increase. The right action now is to try, punish and remove. No question,” the Migration Watch chairman concluded.

On Sunday, a group of seven migrant stowaways reportedly turned violent against the crew of the Nave Andromeda, after they were discovered on the ship. The crew withdrew to the ship’s locked enclosed bridge resulting in a nine-hour incident off the coast of the Isle of White.

The migrants — all of whom are believed to be from Nigeria — were detained during a nine-minute raid on the ship by the elite Special Boat Service (the British equivalent of the U.S. Navy SEALs).

Hampshire Police said that the men were arrested on suspicion of “seizing or exercising control of a ship by use of threats or force,” and Secretary of Defense Ben Wallace claimed that there was a “threat to life”.

The migrants are expected to file asylum claims for the right to remain in the United Kindom, and even if they are jailed for over three years, they may still be able to legally block their deportation under Article 3 of the Human Rights Act.

The Act is enforced by the European Court of Human Rights, a Council of Europe body that is separate from the European Union and therefore still present in British law despite the country leaving the EU.

Following the hijacking, the former director-general of immigration enforcement at the Home Office, David Wood told The Telegraph: “If you get a substantial term in prison, the Human Rights Act allows for asylum status to be removed but it doesn’t overcome Article 3 of the Human Rights Act.”

Tony Smith, former director-general of the Border Force, added that he would be “very surprised” if the alleged hijackers did not claim for asylum in Britain, saying: “We have got to get the message out that stowing away is not going to work and you will find yourself in prison.”

Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage quipped on Monday: “After the Isle of Wight tanker drama 7 stowaways are being detained. Will they be deported or put into a 4 Star Hotel?”

In 2018, four migrants from Liberia and Nigeria took over an Italian cargo ship in the Thames Estuary, throwing urine and faeces as well as waving poles at the crewmembers in a fourteen-hour standoff.

In January of this year, the migrants were cleared of the hijacking charges laid against them but were jailed for affray. The migrants will have their asylum status “reviewed” by the Border Force following their release from prison.

Follow Kurt Zindulka on Twitter here: @KurtZindulka

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