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David Blunkett and the tightening of asylum entry rules

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David Blunkett and the tightening of asylum entry rules Intro There has been a lot of publicity surrounding the general issue of Asylum Seekers, with reports of clashes between Asylum Seekers and members of the host community seeming to be a frequent occurrence. The question of the number of asylum seekers allowed entry into the UK has been at the centre of a longstanding debate for some time. However, it hasn't been up until recently that labour government has decided to take action in order to control the escalating amount of asylum seekers in the country. Therefore, it will be these new measures taken by he home secretary that were announced earlier this week following the asylum amnesty that will be analysed. In order to understand why the government is so eager to control the influx of refugees it is necessary to look at the evidence. According to home office statistics there were approximately 10,588 applications for asylum in the UK in the second quarter of 2003. The top five applicant countries were Somalia, Zimbabwe, China, India and Pakistan. ...read more.


According to the Independent (28th October) the new measures can be seen as a success for British asylum policies. According to the article the home secretary, 'has succeeded through administrative stealth, in something few would have thought possible'. The article continues to argue that despite the new measures the UK will remain faithful to the legal obligations of obligations of the1951 UN convention. The convention formally defined a refugee as a 'a well fear of persecution for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion'. However, it can be argued that as the UK is presenting obstacles in the way of asylum can they really promote themselves as a liberal and democratically free country? This is the argument taken by Theodore Dalrrymple. Similarly, in favour of the new measures the Daily Star (28th October 2003) argues the new rules will enable genuine claiment the right to be let in quicker and conversely those can't provide the necessary documents will be deported just quickly. ...read more.


In addition Steve Pope (Guardian) argues that despite asylum seekers being portrayed by the media as 'national pariahs' they do actually drive the UK economy which is dependent on their cheap labour. However, the question remains of whether the articles presented by journalists can be taken at face value. This is because journalists differ in their treatment of politival issues. In the majority of cases it remains difficult for the journalist to take an objective viewpoint as their own views, morals and values can affect how they present their research. Moreover, journalist are unlikely to research and area or political issue in which they have no interest this in turn can lead to bias and misrepresentation of the data. Therefore, journalists differ from political scientists who try to remain objective in their study. The aim of behaviouralists is to establish law like generalisations and thus they tend to be associated with quantitative data. In conclusion the highly controversial issue of asylum has attracted a wide scope of disagreeing opinions. Thus in order to gain a balanced understanding of the political issue in question a wide range of sources need to be examined. ...read more.

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