Perhaps there’s something to the idea that people of different nations have more in common than the differences which define us. Over in Great Britain, our partners in the Special Relationship are experiencing a phenomenon with their undocumented asylum seekers which is eerily similar to the challenges which ICE faces will illegal immigrants coming across our southern border. Their system causes them to register the entry of many of these unexpected visitors and schedule hearings for them to determine their status. But when the date of the court appearance shows up, thousands of them simply disappear. (Daily Express UK)
An investigation has shown that of 77,440 asylum cases in progress, one in six skipped their first meeting with border chiefs and vanished. The 11,988 include migrants seized and held while trying to sneak into the UK but who have subsequently given authorities the slip.
A rise in numbers trying to cross the Channel from northern France has seen border security stretched to breaking point. Many of those intercepted are thought to have been set free to join illegal immigrants already here.
The alarming Home Office statistic released to the Daily Express under Freedom of Information laws may even be the tip of the iceberg.
If that sounds familiar to you, it should. The Brits go to great lengths to describe the new arrivals as “asylum seekers” or “migrants” but, as the article notes, large numbers of them are simply people who were apprehended while attempting to smuggle their way through the tunnel from the European mainland. They are, in short, illegal immigrants. And much like in the United States, after being tagged and given a court date, more than ten thousand have recently disappeared into the population and ignored the order to show up for a hearing. Their immigration control forces are overwhelmed and they simply can’t keep up with the flow.
Of particular interest to the reporters from the Daily Express were five individuals from Iran who were caught coming into the country and scheduled for such a hearing. Where are they now? (Emphasis added)
The scale of those who have disappeared from under the noses of immigration officials emerged after the Daily Express asked to know the whereabouts of five Iranians who sailed here in a dinghy.
They were held after being caught in Winchelsea, East Sussex, in July. Almost two months later no one has been able to officially confirm where they are. Border officials released the men, aged between 18 and 44, but ordered them to report in regularly.
The total numbers are somewhat paltry when compared to the United States, but we’re talking about a much smaller nation with an ocean channel separating them from the continent. In the last year, their Border Force and enforcement teams report that these asylum seekers numbered more than 40,000 and the majority of them came from Iran, Eritrea, Iraq, Sudan, Pakistan and Syria. If that’s not disturbing to you then you haven’t been paying attention.
As I said… perhaps we have more in common than at first meets the eye. And how are the Brits responding to this news? Surprise! They’re teaming up with the French and building a wall. But unlike our border with Mexico, theirs only needs to be about seven miles long.