Tag Archives: Justice Sedley

British Judge Blasts Brown Government Asylum Policy

A senior British judge accused his government for its deliberate policy of forcing members of the judiciary to deny asylum seekers of an opportunity to obtain a right to remain in Great Britain. Justice Stephen Sedley, a member of the Court of Appeal, said the Brown government is forcing judges to return people to “torture and death” by imposing harsh policies regarding the right of obtaining asylum. He is particularly concerned about a rule which requires a judge to automatically dismiss any asylum seeker the possibility of remaining in Great Britain if he/she used a false passport to escape their country or origin. “Many people fleeing persecution,” noted Sedley, “have no option but to travel on false papers.”

The Brown government, for some reason, has adopted a harsh and inhumane approach to the rights of asylum seekers. There apparently is some belief within the Labor Party that anyone who leaves a brutal dictatorship must do it legally and openly. As Justice Sedley notes, this attitude, is not the “proudest moment for humanitarian protection.” The case of Ms. Mkenda has been cited. After her husband and children were killed by rebel forces and she was raped in the Democratic Republic of Congo, she fled the country using a false French passport. Exactly what does Gordon Brown think she should have done– ask the rapists for an official passport?