Monday, 15 April 2024

Some members of the pressure group Nations without States and it’s sponsor (The National Liberal Party) are from the various self-determinist Diasporas that live in the UK. Some of them have claimed political asylum as to be returned to their homeland may lead to their imprisonment and/or death.
Traditionally Asylum has been given by countries, such as the UK, to those individuals whose political activities have put their lives in jeapody. This is because we as a country have always prided ourselves in supporting and practicing freedom of speech and association. Giving asylum helped highlight the contrast between our principles and those of countries where activists were fleeing from. This is why in the 19th century the UK gave refuge to such disparate figures as Mazzini and Marx.
Today those seeking and those giving asylum have widened the scope to those claiming persecution as a collective group regardless of whether they were personally under threat. The definition of persecution has also widened to include personal lifestyle or alternatively danger i.e. from war. Those claiming the latter are usually described as refugees e.g. Syrians, but technically all those given asylum are ‘refugees’. Globalisation has also facilitated the ability of individuals to physically claim asylum. Few are expected to return and are effectively resettled.
Unfortunately the loosening of the Asylum definition, the abuse of it by those who might be described as ‘economic’ migrants and the sheer numbers, have confused and discredited the whole concept in the eyes of many. Somehow we need to reclaim and distinguish the genuine from the bogus. We will nevertheless always support those genuine political asylum seekers but not those who seek to use it as a cover.
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