British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak vowed on Tuesday to end the asylum backlog by announcing new measures to reduce the number of migrants entering the UK by crossing the English Channel in small boats.
Sunak, who is under increasing pressure to curb the growing number of migrants arriving in small boats, said he also plans to introduce a new bill early next year to ensure people who arrive illegally cannot stay in the country.
The UK Prime Minister also indicated that by the end of 2023 he has added hundreds of staff to process asylum applications and clear up a backlog of applications estimated to be over 143,000 pending applications.
Deportation of Albanian immigrants
Sunan noted that additional work crews will also be focused on quickly removing Albanian migrants, who are arriving through the canal in increasing numbers.
This year, more than 10,000 Albanians have arrived across the English Channel seeking refuge, about a quarter of the record 44,000 who ventured the dangerous journey across the crowded waterway in small boats to the UK.
In 2020, the number of asylum seekers from Albania who arrived in the UK did not exceed a few dozen.
Significant increase in asylum applications
In turn, British officials said that a significant increase in the number of asylum seekers may be associated with the intensification of the organized work of Albanian criminals operating in northern France.
Sunak and others insisted that Albania was “basically a safe country” and that most of the asylum claims from its citizens were unfounded.
A country located in the western Balkans is seeking membership in the European Union.