Albania angrily denies it could process asylum seekers for UK

Albania has strenuously denied it is willing to process people crossing the Channel to Britain, after the UK deputy prime minister, ドミニク・ラーブ, confirmed that the government is exploring ways of processing asylum seekers abroad.

Albania’s foreign minister, Olta Xhaçka, and its ambassador to the UK, Qirjako Qirko, dismissed as a “fake news” a report in the Times suggesting Albania would be willing to host people arriving in the UK from France in small boats.

Raab appeared to give credence to the report by telling Times Radio: “We are looking at international partnerships that can take the processing out of the UK in order to try and reduce the pull factor which means people think they can successfully take advantage of these routes.”

On Sky News later, when Raab was asked if people seeking asylum in the UK would be flown to Albania, 彼は言った: “Well that’s one country, but we are willing to look with partners at whether it’s possible to do this international processing.”

But Tirana reacted angrily to the report. Xhaçka tweeted an image of the front page of the Times and said: “Same old fake news this time in the front page of a respected paper as The Times! And btw I am not a ‘he’ but a ‘she’ who has always admired the quality of British media. Sad.”

Qirko said he was “furious” about the report because on Wednesday he had told the Times “at least 10 times that Albania will never, ever agree to this kind of approach regarding immigrants coming from France.”

ガーディアンと話す, 彼は言った: “It is totally fake. They don’t mention a single word regarding the reality and they write what they prefer.

“I’m a lawyer. Albania has no jurisdiction to decide if an immigrant is legal or illegal. The international convention has arranged everything in detail regarding the process of assessing asylum seekers. The British courts will decide, not the Albania courts.”

In letter of complaint to the Times, Qirko said: “There are no bilateral talks between Albanian and British government officials regarding processing centres for illegal immigrants crossing the English Channel.”

追加しました: “The Albanian government will never agree to [インクルード] opening of such processing centres for illegal immigrants as this is an act violates the international law.”

Processing asylum seekers abroad was started by Australia, first in Papua New Guinea and now on the Pacific island of Nauru.

ラーブ, who is also the justice secretary, defended the UK exploring similar ideas. He told Sky: “I think it’s right, there’s practice around the world in relation to this, to look at these the possibilities of international partnerships for international processing of some of these claims.”

He said the government was trying to stop people crossing the Channel in boats. “We’ve seen 19,000 crossings stopped this year alone, 65 convictions secured of the predatory criminal gangs that thrive on this miserable trade. The home secretary has been engaged with her opposite number in France this week. Their determination is to eliminate all of these illegal crossings," 彼は言った.

“As well as focusing on regional processing, which is probably the optimum way of dealing with refugees as close to source as possible … we want to look with international partners at how we reduce the pull factor. That is, the incentives for the criminal gangs to try and bring people from these wartorn zones. We’ll look at all of the legitimate means of doing that.”

Enver Solomon, the chief executive of the Refugee Council, condemned the offshore processing plan as cruel and likely to be ineffective.

彼は言った: “This is a desperate measure from a government that can only think of how to show cruelty and heartlessness towards our fellow human beings in search of safety. Offshore processing in Albania won’t work as a deterrent, leading to longer delays and an even more dysfunctional asylum system, as well as being a big waste of money.

“Instead this government should focus on addressing Channel crossings through an ambitious expansion of existing safe routes, introducing a humanitarian visa system and recognising that many people seeking asylum will have no other option but to take dangerous journeys and they should always be given a fair hearing on UK soil.”