Moments after Prime Minister David Cameron announced today that up to 20,000 Syrian refugees will be allowed into the UK, it was also revealed that any refugee children will be deported when they reach the age of 18.
Britain confirmed that they will now resettle up to 20,000 refugees who have fled from the conflict in Syria until the end of the current Government in 2020, but it was also revealed that they will face deportation after they’ve been in the UK for five years.
Former Liberal Democrat leader Paddy Ashdown took to Twitter today to reveal the news that the new measures will seemingly come with a caveat.
Lord Ashdown challenged Baroness Stowell of Beeston on the policy in the House of Lords chamber. He asked whether any child or orphan brought under the scheme would be deported at the age of 18, as is the case under existing legislation, and she confirmed there would be no change to the current rules in place.
Writing on Twitter, he said:
Minister in the Lords just confirmed refugee orphans and children brought in under Cameron’s scheme will be deported at age 18.
Minister in the Lords just confirmed refugee orphans and children brought in under Cameron's scheme will be deported at age 18.
— Paddy Ashdown (@paddyashdown) September 7, 2015
Speaking earlier today in the House of Commons, David Cameron said the refugee crisis is the “biggest challenge” facing Europe, and that the UK must carry out its “moral responsibility” to help those affected.
He added that Britain would “show the world that this country is a country of extraordinary compassion”, but Ashdown’s claim appears to expose the sting in the tail of the Government’s plans and some have branded the plans “inhumane”.
Others on social media, however, claimed that the idea was sound, with one saying, “All refugees should be returned to their homelands when it is safe to do so.”