'Everyone wants a better life!' Richard Tice clashes with migrant lawyer on convention

'Everyone wants a better life!' Richard Tice clashes with migrant lawyer on convention
Georgia Pearce

By Georgia Pearce

Published: 27/09/2023

- 12:08

Richard Tice has clashed with Ivon Sampson on the 1951 Refugee Convention, as they debated Suella Braverman's calls for the convention to be updated, during a speech in Washington DC.

Speaking on Farage, the leader of Reform UK became embroiled in a tense row with the Immigration lawyer over the 'principles' of the convention and the Home Secretary's comments.

Tice began the discussion, asking: "She's right, isn't she? The situation is completely unsustainable?"

Sampson replied: "I agree that the Refugee Convention needs amending, but I don't agree that the principle core reasons for claiming asylum need amending. Those are fundamental principles agreed upon by most of the world, where people are being persecuted because their nationality, their race, their gender or their sexual orientation or their political opinion. Now people only claim asylum when they've been persecuted by the their own government."

Tice then argued: "Come on, Ivon we know that. We know that the majority now are economic migrants. We understand everybody wants a better life. We understand millions of British citizens want a better life. That's the reality, isn't it?"

Sampson said: "If there's an economic migrant coming to this country, it's the job of the government to make sure that we identify them and we remove them. You mentioned Australia that were really successful. Do you know how it worked? How do they manage to push back?"

Tice answered Sampson's question, saying: "They push back because they made it clear they pushed back the boats and they had an arrangement with an offshore processing center and it worked. And all of a sudden the boat stopped and 10 years later the boats are not coming back."

Sampson then hit back, saying: "Let me correct you. What they did was have agreements with countries to send people back to. We don't have those agreements. See, once you come over here and you claim asylum and let's just say you're refused, you're an economic migrant.

"What is the government doing? Nothing. Have we prosecuted one single person who's a trafficker? No. Have we sent one person back to Rwanda? We haven't."

Tice responded: "The UN51 convention does not say we have to have returns agreements. We're entitled to do that. We're entitled to reject these applications if they're not lawful. And what troubles many people in this country is compared to 10 years ago, the Home Office, which I think is completely unfit for purpose.

"It's now accepting three times as many applications, even though they're far too slow as you and I can probably agree, as it did 10 years ago. They've become a bunch of softies!"

Watch the debate in full above.

Tune in to Farage, Monday to Thursday from 7pm, only on GB News.

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