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James Brokenshire - Home Office

My rt hon Friend the Home Secretary is today laying before the House a Statement of Changes in Immigration Rules.

The Rules are being changed to make clear the circumstances in which we can withdraw refugee status and leave. The changes clarify terminology and make clear that refugee status can be withdrawn where evidence emerges that such status was obtained by deception or where it is clear that protection is no longer needed. It can also be withdrawn where someone commits a serious crime or is a considered a danger to our national security such that they do not deserve our protection and all the benefits that come with that status.

Existing provisions on the revocation of refugee status are also being extended to include those who instigate or otherwise participate in acts covered by Article 1F of the Refugee Convention, including those who engage in extremist activities that represent a threat to our national security.

New Rules are being introduced to make asylum claims from EU nationals inadmissible unless exceptional circumstances apply. Such claims are currently processed through the asylum system, which includes an interview and detailed written decision. This goes beyond our international obligations and there is provision under EU law to treat claims from EU nationals as inadmissible on the basis that Members States are deemed to be safe countries. We need to do all we can to dissuade abusive claims and considering claims from EU nationals uses resources that I believe are better focused on those who genuinely need protection.

There is no right of appeal against a decision to treat a claim from an EU national as inadmissible. Claims that meet the exceptional circumstances criteria will still be considered but the onus will be on the individual to set out the reasons why their case is exceptional. Human rights issues raised through the appropriate application process will still be considered in accordance with our obligations under the Human Rights Act.

I am also implementing the changes to the English language requirements for settlement and citizenship announced in March. These changes will ensure that the same security assurances apply to English language qualifications whenever they are used in the immigration and citizenship system.

The statement also makes changes to the Immigration Rules on skilled work routes, administrative review and on family and private life.


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