Politics update: Home Office rocked by fresh scandal, as killings of five Jamaicans deported from Britain revealed

Politics update 10.05.2019

Home office under pressure as killings of Jamaicans deported from Britain revealed

Politics update 10.05.2019
Owen Clarke and Alphonso Harriott, both killed in Jamaica this year.

At least five people have been killed in Jamaica since March last year, after being deported from Britain, an investigation by the Guardian newspaper has revealed.

Although the government does not monitor those who are deported by the Home Office, the newspaper uncovered the deaths of five men and contacted several others who said they feared for their lives in the country, which has one of the highest per capita murder rates in the world.

The revelations come as the Home Office resumes its deportation charter flights to Jamaica, after being suspended following the Windrush scandal – which saw many Jamaicans wrongly deported.

A spokeswoman for the End Deportations campaign group said: “It’s sickening but sadly not surprising that people who the Home Office have deported have been killed. These deportations must be stopped immediately before more lives are lost.”

A Home Office spokesman said: “We only return those with no legal right to remain in the UK, including foreign national offenders. Individuals are only returned to their country of origin when the Home Office and courts deem it is safe to do so.”

“Should the Home Office receive any specific allegations that a returnee has experienced ill-treatment on return to their country of origin, these would be investigated in partnership with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.”

Officials fear Tories could come 6th in European elections

Senior Conservatives fear that their party could come in sixth in the European elections, with some candidates saying the party was “almost in denial” about the upcoming poll.

The worry of candidates running in the elections is enhanced by the government’s insistence that the candidates may not have to take up their seats, in the event that Theresa May’s Brexit deal is passed in the coming weeks.

The Conservatives are spending no money on campaigning for the elections, has no plans to publish a manifesto, and is reportedly refusing to hold a launch.

One MEP said this week: “The thinking is that if we make no effort then we will have an excuse for having done so badly. But it is seriously embarrassing.”

Charities call for politicians to eradicate hate speech ahead of European elections

Ted Malloch Nigel Farage

More than 30 charities, trade unions and community organisations have called on politicians to end hate speech as Britain gears up for the European elections.

The groups, including TUC, Amnesty International and Stonewall, urged politicians to eradicate hate speech in the run up to the 23 May vote, and to correct false statements made by any MEP candidates.

A joint statement from the organisations reads: said: “We are calling upon political parties to take all necessary steps during the European parliament election campaign to eradicate hate speech and false claims that divide our communities.

“Freedom of speech and freedom of expression are a fundamental part of our democracy. However, they must not be used to incite harm against others.

“It is not acceptable to blame different races, ethnic or religious groups, migrant workers or refugees for Britain’s problems.”

Corbyn: new referendum could be ‘healing process’

Jeremy Corbyn CBI conference speech

Jeremy Corbyn has claimed that a fresh referendum could be a “healing process” that could bring the Brexit saga to a close, in a speech given on Labour’s launch night of their European election campaign.

The comments come as the Labour leadership faces pressure to officially give its backing to a second referendum as its preferred option moving forward in the Brexit process. Though it is believed to have been discussed in the recent cross-party talks, it is one of the prime minister’s red lines.

Speaking at the event in Medway, Kent, Mr Corbyn said: “Over 17 million people voted to leave the European Union. As democratic socialists, we cannot ignore that.

“We voted to trigger Article 50 in 2017 and promised to respect the referendum in our general election manifesto and again at our party conference last year.

“If we can’t get a sensible deal, along the lines of our alternative plan or a general election, Labour backs the option of a public vote.”

Later, Mr Corbyn referred back to the option, saying: “I would want that to be seen as a healing process, bringing this whole process to a conclusion.”

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Daniel Cody

Daniel Cody is SEO Editor at the New Statesman, and the creator of No Majesty. He is the host of the podcast Britain on the Rocks.