Suella Braverman floundered when quizzed on how new immigration plans would have impacted Sir Mo Farah.
The home secretary appeared on Sky News to talk about the government's controversial new immigration proposals. The newly announced plans would see asylum seekers arriving in the UK via small boats being detained and deported, and would introduce a yet to be decided annual cap on the number of refugees the UK will offer sanctuary to.
It's proving pretty controversial with Labour and the UNHCR speaking out against it, and Braverman herself admitting it was “more than 50 per cent” likely to break human rights law when she unveiled the plans.
But the optics got even worse when she was asked about the athlete.
Asked whether Olympian would have been deported under the proposals, Braverman said: “Well, as I said, we are very proud of our world-leading modern slavery regime. We’ve got world-leading protections on human trafficking, proud of protections the Conservative government have put in place to protect genuine victims of modern slavery.”
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When pressed again, Braverman added: “We have very lawful … for people who are genuine victims of modern slavery.”
\u201c#KayBurley to Suella Braverman: "Mo Farah was trafficked when he was 9... Under your new scheme he would have been deported when he was 18. Is that the case?\u201d— Saul Staniforth (@Saul Staniforth) 1678262256
Four-time Olympic champion Farah, who is Britain’s most successful track athlete, revealed in a BBC documentary during July last year how he was brought to the UK from Somalia illegally, having assumed the name of another child, after his father was killed in the civil war. He was later helped to obtain UK citizenship by his school PE teacher Alan Watkinson, while still using the name Mohamed Farah.
Elsewhere, Braverman denied the new proposals would break the law.
“We’re not breaking the law, and no government representative has said that we’re breaking the law,” Braverman told Sky News. “In fact, we’ve made it very clear that we believe we’re in compliance with all of our international obligations, for example the refugee convention, the European convention on human rights, other conventions to which we are subject.
“They are breaking our laws, they are abusing the generosity of the British people and we now need to ensure that they are deterred from doing that.
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