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LBC caller tells Shelagh Fogarty that the Channel islands are the answer to 'illegal immigration'
18 January 2024, 15:05 | Updated: 18 January 2024, 15:06
Shelagh Fogarty is unconvinced by caller John's solution to illegal immigration, as the Rwanda bill passes its' final hurdle in the House of Commons.
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John in Reading began, stating: "Four out of five people want illegal immigration to stop, that would indicate to me they want the border force to be a border force and tow the boats back to France."
He went on to suggest that the government "have a Rwanda scheme, but use the British Islands", listing Guernsey, Jersey, the Isle of Man and Scottish islands as possible locations to place "illegal immigrants", meaning they "wouldn't set foot in Great Britain".
He added that if they were then successful in their asylum claim they could set up a permanent base on the islands.
Shelagh pointed out that the islands are within Great Britain, then questioning why immigrants would not be allowed on the mainland even with a successful claim.
John then gave the example of Australia, which is has been referenced a number of times as the Rwanda plan has made its progression.
Strict border rules were implemented in the country under former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, whereby migrant boats were intercepted and either returned to where they travelled from or those on board taken to overseas island detention centres.
The 'Stop the boats' slogan and rhetoric of the policy have been copied almost word for word by the Tory government.
When pushed by John to recognise if it had worked in Australia, Shelagh pointed out: "Not for the people put there".
Sunak tells House of Lords to 'get on board' with his Rwanda Bill
John went on to suggest his plan should be put to a referendum: "How about we say 'do you want the British government to force the boats back to France or to set up camps in the British islands...and if it's unsuccessful they'll get deported back to their home country and if it's successful they'll stay on that island, or do you want the government to continue allowing illegal immigration".
In making his case for a referendum John continued: "The politicians are completely out of touch with the British public and so is the mainstream media."
Shelagh concluded, acknowledging: "The boats are a problem, they're a problem for the people getting in them, and they're a problem to be dealt with in this country at the other end."
"The majority of people are eventually classed as refugees, that is a fact, of course, illegal immigration is a problem, it shouldn't be happening, but when people are classed as a refugee after arriving at these shores, they are not illegal, John."