Why was an Afghan flasher granted asylum?

Our dysfunctional asylum system is putting the safety of British citizens at risk.

Rakib Ehsan

Rakib Ehsan

Topics Politics UK

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Every time I think that I can no longer be surprised by the failures of the UK’s immigration and asylum system, another jaw-dropping scandal emerges.

On Wednesday, Sky News revealed that a convicted sex offender and asylum seeker had avoided deportation to his home country of Afghanistan on rather shocking grounds. In essence, he couldn’t be deported because he’s a sex offender.

It sounds almost too ridiculous to be true. At some as-yet-undisclosed point in the very recent past, the 31-year-old man, referred to only as DH, was given a 12-month jail sentence at a central London magistrates’ court. He had been found guilty of deliberately and repeatedly exposing himself in public. His conviction and incarceration was viewed by the authorities as potential grounds for his deportation.

But at his subsequent immigration tribunal, his legal team appealed his asylum claim on the grounds that his ‘sexually disinhibited behaviour’ – which has reportedly continued despite his conviction – would make him vulnerable to ‘serious harm’ in Taliban-ruled Afghanistan. Denying him refuge in the UK would therefore breach his human rights, his lawyers argued. The tribunal judge agreed and promptly awarded DH refugee status.

This is a particularly egregious example of a practice that has become all too common in recent years – namely, the exploitation of the UK’s human-rights framework by dangerous asylum seekers and other foreign nationals. We’ve seen this happen in the case of Abdul Ezedi, the Clapham alkali attacker and convicted sex offender who ‘converted’ to Christianity in order to claim asylum here – as a Christian, he claimed he risked religious persecution in Afghanistan. We’ve seen it happen in the case of Albanian crime lord Gjelosh Kolicaj, who dodged deportation on the grounds that it would violate his ‘right to a family life’. And now we’re seeing it again in the case of DH, a convicted and seemingly persistent sex offender.

It seems that a combination of human-rights laws and ‘progressive’ judicial activism has led to a dangerous situation – one in which the ‘human rights’ of high-risk foreign nationals are being prioritised over the safety of law-abiding British citizens.

I’m sorry if this sounds harsh, but the fate of a sexually deviant foreign national in his home country should not be our concern. The principal responsibility of the British state is to protect its own citizens. It certainly should not be elevating the ‘human rights’ of sex-offending asylum seekers above the welfare of British women.

The vast majority of these asylum scandals have happened on the Tories’ watch. Time and again, the so-called natural party of law and order has shown itself unable to get a grip of our dysfunctional asylum and immigration system. Tory ministers tend to point to the ECHR, the Human Rights Act and the UN Refugee Convention to explain away this failure. They claim that these treaties and laws have empowered activist lawyers. But, while it is true that Britain’s hands are tied by this array of human-rights legislation, the government must shoulder the bulk of the blame.

After all, if senior ministers believe it is not in Britain’s national interest to remain a signatory of these treaties, then they should campaign to leave or update them. Clearly, despite the Tories’ tough rhetoric on migration, getting to grips with a system that protects criminals at the expense of the public is not really a priority.

It’s time we had politicians who are willing to put our collective national security first.

Rakib Ehsan is the author of Beyond Grievance: What the Left Gets Wrong about Ethnic Minorities, which is available to order on Amazon.

Picture by: Getty.

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Topics Politics UK


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