If passed, the Nationality and Borders Act would “severely undermine the protection of the human rights of trafficked persons, including children; increase the risk of exploitation for all migrants and asylum seekers; and lead to serious human rights violations”, Siobhán Mullally, United Nations special rapporteur on trafficking in persons, in a say statement.
She added: “The bill fails to recognise the government’s obligation to ensure the protection of migrant and asylum-seeking children and greatly increases the risk of statelessness, in contravention of international law.”
Seeking and enjoying asylum is a fundamental human right, according to UN experts.
However, the Act does not respect the UK’s obligations under international human rights and refugee law, but instead removes the core protections of a democratic society and puts vulnerable people at risk.
Experts say that, if passed, it could punish asylum seekers and refugees, violating the principle of non-punishment in international law and discriminating against categories of asylum seekers, in violation of international law.
Consistent with words and deeds
They also highlighted specific risks faced by immigrant and refugee women.
Under the bill, women who have experienced gender-based violence can be turned away rather than allowed to seek safety.
“The government has repeatedly made public statements about combating trafficking and modern slavery, and concrete action must be taken to ensure that the law protects all victims of trafficking and modern slavery equally, without discrimination,” the experts stressed.
Experts expressed alarm that the bill would increase the likelihood of “arbitrary deprivation of citizenship”, cautioning that the bill has historical roots in racism and discrimination and increases the risk of statelessness.
“The bill exploits national security concerns, increasing the risk of discrimination and serious human rights violations, especially against minorities, migrants and refugees,” they made clear, urging the government to “revoke these proposed measures.”
stand up and talk
In November, experts dispatched letter to the UK government outlining a range of concerns over the bill.
In addition to Ms Mulally, other experts who signed the statement were Felipe Gonzalez Morales, special rapporteur on the human rights of migrants, Fionnuala Ní Aoláin, Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights while countering terrorism And Tomoya Obokata, Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, including its causes and consequences.
Rem Alsalem, special rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences Also agree with the statement.
Special rapporteurs and independent experts appointed by the Geneva-based United Nations Human Rights Council arrive Check and report on a specific human rights theme or country situation. These positions are honorary and the work of experts is not paid.