Merseyside, UK police Friday arrested 15 individuals on suspicion of violent disorder during a February 10 anti-asylum protest outside of a Knowsley hotel where asylum-seekers are being lodged. Witnesses claimed that police vehicles were set alight, but no injuries were reported. It is unclear if those arrested are affiliated with far-right political groups.Care4Calais, who was part of the counter-protest, tweeted that they were .trapped with counter demonstrators [outside] the hotel where the far right demo has become violent’. They also noted ‘People are very frightened: it is shocking to think how refugees in the hotel must be feeling’.In 2022 the Home Office said that they have been reaching out to various local authorities to host asylum-seeking families in city hotels, paid for by the Home Office. They laid out criteria for the allocation of asylum accommodation, outlining who is eligible under the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999—which is said to be revised shortly. Furthermore, Home Secretary Suella Braverman told the House of Commons that she ‘did not ignore legal advice’ surrounding immigrants and claimed to have delivered more emergency accommodation in overcrowded areas. Similarly, immigration minister Robert Jenrick claimed to have been actively looking for more room for asylum seekers.Still, there are tensions between the demonstrators and the local authorities. In a statement from Knowsley Labour MP George Howarth said an ‘alleged incident posted on social media’ triggered the demonstration and those protesting ‘do not represent this community’.In January, the Knowsley Council aimed to clear up any false assumptions about asylum seekers moving into hotels in local news. 
Opinions expressed in JURIST Commentary are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of JURIST’s editors, staff, donors or the University of Pittsburgh.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *