Boat Migrants Being Bussed 500 Miles to Scotland For Processing

DOVER, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 09: Migrants are brought into Dover docks by Border Force staff on September 9, 2021 in Dover, England. Facing a continued rise in migrant arrivals across the English Channel, the British government has authorised its Border Force to turn back boats while at sea, in some …
Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

At least 50 migrants who illegally crossed the English Channel have been bussed over 500 miles to a processing centre in Scotland, though one Conservative politician thinks they should be sent somewhere much farther away in order to deter illegal migration.

Migrants who had arrived on England’s southeast shores had up until recently been processed in so-called short-term holding facilities a few hours away from the landing beaches.

However, according to the report published in The Guardian, some more recent arrivals have been put on busses and transported to an immigration detention centre some eight or nine hours away in Strathaven, South Lanarkshire, south of Glasgow in Scotland.

Kate Alexander, director of Scottish Detainee Visitors, an organisation dedicated to “supporting people detained by the Immigration Service in Dungavel IRC and influencing policy on detention”, told The Guardian that she learned that about 50 people had ended up in the centre for processing.

The staff of the facility reportedly told her it was the second time that month that such migrants were brought to the centre, but that there had been no such arrivals the month previous.

Though some have raised issues with the distance migrants are being brought for processing, others have suggested they should be moved much further away from their point of landing than Scotland.

Conservative MP Lee Anderson has suggested that migrants should be processed over ten times further away than that, telling The Guardian in a separate article: “I would be in favour of [using] the Falkland Islands. The only way we will put these people off is by giving them the message that if you come here you are going to be sent 8,000 miles away.”

It is estimated that over 25,000 have illegally crossed the English Channel this year, over three times last year’s number.

Only five have been successfully deported by the British government, which has come under fire from struggling to stem the tide.

Ex-UKIP leader Nigel Farage has threatened to re-enter electoral politics over the issue, calling the crisis “out of control”. “Over the last few weeks, I have been approached by several high-ranking donors asking me if I am considering getting back into the political arena,” Farage wrote in a comment article published by The Telegraph.

The arch-Brexiteer has a history of causing trouble for the Tories.

Farage’s Brexit Party, which lambasted the then-government for not fighting hard enough for Brexit, delivered a humiliating defeat to Theresa May’s ruling Conservative Party during the 2019 European Parliament elections, a defeat that foreshadowed the prime minister’s ultimate downfall, and the ascent of current pro-Brexit Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

.

Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.