Clarke launches crackdown on asylum in five-year plan

    More asylum seekers whose claims have failed will be detained
    under government plans outlined today, writes Clare

    Charles Clarke

    The Home Office’s five-year strategy explained that the
    detention estate will be expanded with 300 new places by 2007.

    The government also pledged that by the end of 2005, more failed
    asylum seekers will be removed than there are unsuccessful
    applicants. There will also be a closer management of asylum claims
    with tighter controls being introduced throughout the system, such
    as voice verification and tagging.

    “We will build on our achievements with asylum, cracking
    down further on those who seek to exploit our system,” said
    home secretary Charles Clarke. “More claims will be
    fast-tracked and we will have tighter controls throughout the

    “People who are genuinely fleeing persecution will be able
    to find a safe haven in this country but we will be tough on those
    trying to exploit the system,” he added.

    The five-year strategy also outlines plans to grant refugees
    temporary leave rather than permanent status while the government
    reviews whether the situation in their country has improved. If
    after five years the situation has not improved, permanent status
    would be granted.

    The government has already reduced the number of appeals an
    asylum seeker can make against a decision and this will be extended
    to migration routes by abolishing appeals for those seeking to
    enter the UK to study or work. There will also be a points system
    for those coming to the UK to work or study.

    Fixed penalty fines of £2,000 will be imposed on employers
    for each illegal worker they employ.

    ‘Controlling our borders: making migration work for
    Britain’ from


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