It was reported today that 39 people have been found dead in a lorry container in Essex – see story here. In response to this news, we have issued the below comment:
Maurice Wren, Chief Executive of the Refugee Council, said: “This is truly tragic news, but depressingly predictable and avoidable news. If you deny people safe and regular travel routes to find safety, you are leaving them with no choice but to risk their lives on utterly perilous journeys and in the hands of criminal gangs. These gangs are a symptom of a much deeper problem – namely Governments’ failure to provide safety to those who desperately need it.
“As long as we think the answer to this tragedy is about building high walls and impenetrable borders, this will keep happening. As we have done so many times before, we urge the Government to introduce safe and regular travel routes – such as, in the case of refugees, widening the definition of family members eligible to reunite under refugee family reunion rules. ”