This article is from the source 'bbc' and was first published or seen on . The next check for changes will be

You can find the current article at its original source at https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-59414460

The article has changed 8 times. There is an RSS feed of changes available.

Version 4 Version 5
Asylum claims to UK reach highest level in nearly 20 years Asylum claims to UK reach highest level in nearly 20 years
(about 2 hours later)
Asylum claims are processed at Lunar House in Croydon, south LondonAsylum claims are processed at Lunar House in Croydon, south London
Asylum applications to the UK have reached their highest level since 2004, according to official estimates.Asylum applications to the UK have reached their highest level since 2004, according to official estimates.
There were 37,562 asylum applications in the year to September - an 18% increase on the previous year.There were 37,562 asylum applications in the year to September - an 18% increase on the previous year.
But net migration - which does not include asylum claims or refugees - fell by 88% last year after Covid.But net migration - which does not include asylum claims or refugees - fell by 88% last year after Covid.
The figures come after 27 people drowned crossing the channel, sparking renewed calls for changes to the way those seeking refuge are treated.The figures come after 27 people drowned crossing the channel, sparking renewed calls for changes to the way those seeking refuge are treated.
So far this year, more than 23,000 people have attempted the crossing from France to the UK by boat.So far this year, more than 23,000 people have attempted the crossing from France to the UK by boat.
A government spokesperson said the asylum statistics "demonstrate the complex scale of the global migration crisis".A government spokesperson said the asylum statistics "demonstrate the complex scale of the global migration crisis".
They claimed that the government's Nationality and Borders Bill - currently making its way through Parliament - would "ensure we are fair to those in genuine need and break the business model of criminal trafficking networks".They claimed that the government's Nationality and Borders Bill - currently making its way through Parliament - would "ensure we are fair to those in genuine need and break the business model of criminal trafficking networks".
However, Labour has said the bill would breach international law on refugees and "damage the UK's standing around the world".
The Home Office figures also reveal a big backlog of asylum claims waiting to be heard, with 67,547 cases yet to have an initial decision.The Home Office figures also reveal a big backlog of asylum claims waiting to be heard, with 67,547 cases yet to have an initial decision.
More people cross the Channel after deadliest dayMore people cross the Channel after deadliest day
Who is allowed to work in the UK after Brexit?Who is allowed to work in the UK after Brexit?
Are there many more EU citizens in UK than we thought?Are there many more EU citizens in UK than we thought?
Dr Peter William Walsh, of Oxford University's Migration Observatory, said: "The situation in the channel yesterday (Wednesday) is an unspeakable tragedy.Dr Peter William Walsh, of Oxford University's Migration Observatory, said: "The situation in the channel yesterday (Wednesday) is an unspeakable tragedy.
"The increase in claims for asylum is driven by arrivals from Eritrea, Iran and Syria, all of which have very high acceptance rates for asylum in the UK."The increase in claims for asylum is driven by arrivals from Eritrea, Iran and Syria, all of which have very high acceptance rates for asylum in the UK.
"The backlog in the number of asylum seekers is increasing both as a result of this increase and the slow processing of asylum claims.""The backlog in the number of asylum seekers is increasing both as a result of this increase and the slow processing of asylum claims."
Afghanistan resettlementAfghanistan resettlement
Asylum applications in the UK were "substantially lower" than in France, which received 31,000 applicants in the third quarter of 2021, according to the Migration Observatory.Asylum applications in the UK were "substantially lower" than in France, which received 31,000 applicants in the third quarter of 2021, according to the Migration Observatory.
People can claim for asylum in the UK if they fear persecution in their own country.People can claim for asylum in the UK if they fear persecution in their own country.
Children in a refugee camp in SyriaChildren in a refugee camp in Syria
The Home Office says that last year it offered protection to 13,210 people in the form of asylum and other schemes, representing a 2% increase on the previous year.The Home Office says that last year it offered protection to 13,210 people in the form of asylum and other schemes, representing a 2% increase on the previous year.
Iran was the top nationality claiming asylum, as it has been every year since 2016, with 6,002 applications.Iran was the top nationality claiming asylum, as it has been every year since 2016, with 6,002 applications.
Applications from Eritrean nationals rose by 97%, while claims from Syrians increased by 74% and by 39% for Afghans and Albanians.Applications from Eritrean nationals rose by 97%, while claims from Syrians increased by 74% and by 39% for Afghans and Albanians.
The figures do not include those who came to the UK via the Afghanistan Citizens Resettlement Scheme, which supported Afghans who had worked with the UK government in their home country.The figures do not include those who came to the UK via the Afghanistan Citizens Resettlement Scheme, which supported Afghans who had worked with the UK government in their home country.
Asylum applications last peaked in 2002 when demand was driven by conflict or unrest in Iraq, Afghanistan, Zimbabwe and Somalia.Asylum applications last peaked in 2002 when demand was driven by conflict or unrest in Iraq, Afghanistan, Zimbabwe and Somalia.
Numbers fell in subsequent years and have since fluctuated between 20,000 and 40,000.Numbers fell in subsequent years and have since fluctuated between 20,000 and 40,000.
Net migration fallsNet migration falls
Separate figures, released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), suggest a dramatic drop in net migration to the UK last year, due to Covid travel restrictions.Separate figures, released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), suggest a dramatic drop in net migration to the UK last year, due to Covid travel restrictions.
Net migration - the difference between people coming to live in the UK and emigrating to other countries - was 34,000 in 2020, compared with 271,000 the previous year.Net migration - the difference between people coming to live in the UK and emigrating to other countries - was 34,000 in 2020, compared with 271,000 the previous year.
Brexit was also a factor in the 88% fall in numbers, but the ONS stressed that there was "no evidence of an exodus" from the UK.Brexit was also a factor in the 88% fall in numbers, but the ONS stressed that there was "no evidence of an exodus" from the UK.
In March 2020, the public were told to stop all non-essential travel in a bid to prevent the spread of coronavirus, and air travel to and from the UK dropped by 95% in the early months of the pandemic.In March 2020, the public were told to stop all non-essential travel in a bid to prevent the spread of coronavirus, and air travel to and from the UK dropped by 95% in the early months of the pandemic.
Net migration in 2020 from the EU was negative, with 94,000 more EU nationals thought to have left the UK than to have arrived, the ONS statistics suggest.Net migration in 2020 from the EU was negative, with 94,000 more EU nationals thought to have left the UK than to have arrived, the ONS statistics suggest.
But 5.5 million EU nationals were granted permission to remain in the UK through the post-Brexit settlement scheme, according to Home Office figures. with more than 300,000 cases still being processed.But 5.5 million EU nationals were granted permission to remain in the UK through the post-Brexit settlement scheme, according to Home Office figures. with more than 300,000 cases still being processed.
So far, 180,000 EU nationals have been refused permission to remain in the UK.So far, 180,000 EU nationals have been refused permission to remain in the UK.
The ONS warned that its net migration figures were based on "experimental research" and "subject to a high level of uncertainty".The ONS warned that its net migration figures were based on "experimental research" and "subject to a high level of uncertainty".
The organisation was forced to suspend the International Passenger Survey, the traditional method of measuring migration through surveys at ports and airports. due to the pandemic.The organisation was forced to suspend the International Passenger Survey, the traditional method of measuring migration through surveys at ports and airports. due to the pandemic.