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Jun-09-2012 13:41printcomments

UK Under Fire for Deporting Sri Lankan Asylum Seekers

By engineering social status and a divide and rule system, Britain ensured that when it withdrew, chaos would follow.

Majinda Rajapakse shakes the hand of the Queen
Majinda Rajapakse shakes the hand of the Queen

(LONDON Press TV) - It was supposed to be a celebratory lunch; the Sri Lankan President flanked by leaders from other Commonwealth countries dining in sumptuous style with the queen to celebrate 60 years on the British throne.

Instead the Sri Lankan president was forced to cancel a planned speech due to protests at his presence in London. They claim the government of Mahinda Rajapaksa is responsible for the mistreatment of returning refugees and wants the UK to stop forcing Sri Lankan asylum seekers to leave Britain.

Human rights groups have said atrocities were committed on both sides of the brutal war within Sri Lanka where tens of thousands were killed in the Tamil’s fight for an independent state. This now bloody episode has its background steeped in history.

Observers point to the fact that the Sri Lankan case, as with many former colonies was one where Britain sowed the seeds of discontent that ultimately spilled over into violence. By engineering social status and a divide and rule system, Britain ensured that when it withdrew, chaos would follow.

This is not the first time Britain has been put under pressure to review its deportation policy. Critics point to the lack of uniformity in the way the Home Office decides its cases with little transparency in its processes.

When contacted for a response from the Home Office, a spokesperson refused to comment on general procedure but said this of the Sri Lankan case.

The UK has a proud record of offering sanctuary to those who need it, but people who do not have a genuine need for our protection must return to their home country. We only undertake returns to Sri Lanka when we are satisfied that the individual has no international protection needs. The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that not all Tamil asylum seekers require protection.

In the meantime, despite the Sri Lankan government denying claims that any returnees are targeted, rights groups are urging the British government to stop the forced removal of any persons claiming asylum until they can guarantee their complete safety.

Special thanks to Press TV

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