Updates, commentary, training and advice on immigration and asylum law

In case you missed it: the week in immigration news


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Free Movement’s pick of the past week’s media reporting on immigration and asylum.

The successful challenge to Home Office policy on rough sleepers from EU countries got top billing this week (see Sky News, among many others).

Similarly widespread is the story of Kelvin Fawaz, the stateless boxing champion at risk of being deported to Nigeria (ITV News). The 29 year old’s resilience has seen him pick up some unlikely backers.

Child refugees are also high on the agenda: the Guardian reports that “the first vulnerable child refugee stranded in Greece who qualifies for sanctuary under the Dubs amendment has arrived in the UK”. The Independent has an exclusive letter from MPs of all parties urging the government to do more on the issue.

Lily Caprani of Unicef UK writes in the Times that family reunion rules need to be reformed after Brexit.

The UK-EU deal on citizens’ rights was signed off by the European Council this week (Reuters). Eleanor Spaventa of Durham blogged for the Conversation on what it means for EU citizens, while the immigration minister told the Home Affairs Committee more about how the process for “settled status” will work (Guardian). A reminder that we have a detailed analysis of the agreement – and some issues with its flaws.

UK citizens in mainland Europe are particularly unimpressed: “nobody cares about us”, representatives told the Guardian.

Sticking with European news, the Express (yes, yes, but its Brussels correspondent is actually rather good) reports that Romania and Bulgaria are pushing for inclusion in the Schengen Area next year over the objections of older member states.

In Scotland, the pregnant wife of a St Andrews resident has had her visa application denied for taking an English language test of a higher standard than that required. BBC News reports the case as “Woman’s English ‘too good for UK entry'”.

Campaigning on the cost of citizenship for children makes the Independent: apparently it is now “is now 22 times more expensive than in Germany”.

The Guardian, similarly, carries a letter from various NGOs urging the government to give local authorities more power over asylum accommodation.

Finally, Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott has said that there should be less “bureaucracy around migration”. The sentiment is apparently controversial, to judge by the breathless reporting of the Sun.

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The Free Movement blog was founded in 2007 by Colin Yeo, a barrister at Garden Court Chambers specialising in immigration law. The blog provides updates and commentary on immigration and asylum law by a variety of authors.