African refugees protesting for their rights - Seeking Asylum in the UK isn't as Easy as it Seems. African refugees protesting for their rights - Seeking Asylum in the UK isn't as Easy as it Seems.


Seeking Asylum in the UK isn't as Easy as it Seems.

United Kingdom
#refugee #asylum

Everyone appears to have an opinion on refugees and asylum seekers. But only a few seem to have a good understanding of how the system truly functions. As a result, there are frequently absurd allegations about "illegal immigrants obtaining benefits" or asylum seekers "jumping the queue" by entering the country unlawfully.

For a considerable amount of time, there has been growing concern regarding the phenomena of refugees or asylum seekers. This worry is a result of the instability that irregular movements have on organised international efforts to help refugees. Though the country has introduced refugee policies for Ukrainians and people from around the world, they still have to go through a lot.

It is believed that the UK is, in so many ways, an inhospitable country for anyone seeking asylum. Policies from the Home Office are explicitly designed to frustrate genuine refugees and encourage them to leave the UK. Even if a refugee has been awarded refugee status, the rules may still have a negative influence on one's mental health in the long run. 

A bunch of asylum seeking children waiting for the confirmation - Seeking Asylum in UK isn't as easy as it seems.

Refugee and Asylum Seekers

An individual who has fled his/her home country because they fear being persecuted and subjected to severe human rights violations there is known as a refugee. The persecution can occur because of a person's ethnicity, religion, nationality, participation in a specific social group, or political beliefs. As per the United Nations Convention 1951, the refugees are entitled to the international rescue.

Moreover, refugees and asylum seekers also have a slight difference. A person who has left his country and is looking for refuge from persecution and grave human rights violations in another nation is known as an asylum seeker. However, he has not yet received legal recognition as a refugee and is awaiting word on their application for asylum.

Problems faced by Refugees in the UK

Seeking asylum in the UK is not straightforward and can pose problems at several stages. The government has posed various policies like that of the Rwanda scheme. However, because of specific regulations, the applicants are left with no choice but to use prohibited methods that can be troublesome.

Illegal entry into the country

The Nationality and Borders Act 2022 (NABA), section 40, makes it challenging for someone to enter the UK without a visa. Since there is no such thing as a "refuge visa," practically all individuals seeking asylum in the UK will be subject to this rule. Anyone who enters the UK after that date and requests asylum will be in violation of the law.

It's vital to keep in mind, though, that it would not be feasible for the government to charge every asylum claimant. They will therefore target individuals who are returning to the UK after being expelled or removed as failed asylum seekers.

You may enter the country on any visa and apply for asylum once you are there. However, it will also be wrong as you will be masking your intentions from the start. As a result, it is now challenging to enter the UK and request asylum. This is blatantly against UN-enforced international law.

Asylum seekers entering the UK through sea - Seeking Asylum in the UK isn't as Easy as it Seems.

Using Fake Passport

Some asylum seekers who travel to the UK do so with their own passports. However, for some people, this is impossible. To intentionally use a fraudulent passport to enter the UK is illegal. Some individuals, however, are forced to since it puts them at risk.

However, the good part is that using a real passport to flee persecution in your country of origin is recognised as posing a risk under Article 31 of the Refugee Convention. It states that if asylum seekers have a valid basis for using fake passports, they shouldn't be penalised. Still, they are to prove that they have;

  • Entered from a nation where your life or freedom was in danger
  • Demonstrated a strong reason for your unauthorised entry or presence, and
  • Made an asylum application as soon as it was conceivable to do so upon your arrival in the UK.

In other words, though the law will protect you, you still need to have a strong case. Moreover, the applicants may have to face Section 37 of the new Nationality and Border act, which in most cases, limits the application of Article 31.

Culture of disbelieving

First, it's critical to recognise that the system for determining eligibility for asylum is unfair. Because of the culture of disbelief at the Home Office, employees constantly assume that refugees are lying. A prime example of that is Aderonke Apata's case, where she had to go beyond limits to prove that she had actual threats of prosecution in the country of her origin.

Several investigations claim that Home Office caseworkers may be prejudiced and undertrained to handle a variety of asylum cases. Thus they will make a decision regarding a nation they are unfamiliar with. The end result is that migrants must endure a lengthy period of hardship in the asylum system, all while navigating a hostile environment.

Final Thoughts

Refugees have been constantly subjected to prejudice for a long time. Leaving your homeland to find a better place and facing problems in another part of the world is genuinely troublesome. Those seeking asylum in the UK are also faced with various setbacks. Thus, the ones attempting refuge are advised to take the proper route and have help from professionals if needed.


How many of the UK asylum applications are turned down?

In 2004, 88% of asylum seekers had their initial applications denied, which was an enormous rate ever. Since then, the refusal rate has generally decreased and was 28% at the time, which was the lowest level since 1990.

How long does it take to process asylum seekers' applications?

According to the Home Office, an asylum claim will typically be resolved in 6 months, but if it's challenging, it could take longer.


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