In response to news that Iraqi asylum seekers are being detained in preparation for their forcible removal to Iraq, Margaret Lally, Deputy Chief Executive of the Refugee Council said:
“We are appalled by these developments. All anyone needs to do is watch the news to see just how dangerous Iraq is at the moment. There is no evidence that the situation in Iraq is improving at all.
“The government is ignoring the advice of the UN, whose position is that it is too early to force people to return. The US State Department has also advised that terrorists are targeting civilian flights which shows just how dangerous these plans are.
“It is completely wrong to be detaining people who have made every effort to comply with the law simply as a holding operation prior to removal, let alone for the purpose of sending them back to a country torn apart by war and insurgency.
“Many Iraqis are keen to return to Iraq and rebuild their lives once it is safe for them to do so.
“We urge the government to reconsider this course of action as a matter of urgency.”