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Priti Patel will assume new powers to block visa requests from countries that refuse to take back illegal migrants.
The Home Secretary is introducing the changes through her Nationality and Borders Bill in order to pressurise countries to take back failed asylum seekers, illegal migrants and foreign criminals.
The new amendments will enable Ms Patel to suspend all visa requests from countries that do not comply, including applications to settle, work, study or visit. The new powers will also allow her to increase visa processing times so that applications are delayed and impose a fixed £190 surcharge on applicants.
The move comes amid frustration within the Government over the refusal of EU states and other countries to take back illegal migrants who have no right to remain in the UK. Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Eritrea and the Philippines are understood to be the countries most reluctant to co-operate with the UK.
More than 10,000 criminals are due for deportation but are free to roam the streets, and around 42,000 failed asylum seekers are still living in Britain.
Ms Patel said: “The UK has a proud history of being open to the world, but we rightly expect our international partners to work with us to remove those who have no right to be in the UK, such as dangerous foreign national offenders.
“It is unfair on UK citizens and taxpayers that pressure is put on our public services by foreign nationals with no legal right to be here.”
The powers that could exclude a nation’s citizens from entering the UK are likely to face criticism from human rights groups, but ministers say others including the US and EU use the same tactics when deportations are refused by foreign governments.
Officials noted that there would be exemptions for applicants in “exceptional circumstances” where there was a justified need for someone to visit the UK.
Ms Patel is also taking new powers to deport foreign criminals to be removed earlier in their sentences. They will now be sent back 12 months before the end of their jail term, rather than nine months as at present.
Tom Pursglove, the justice minister, said: “We are ensuring our system is fair for those who play by the rules, but firm on foreign criminals and those in our country illegally.”
The Home Office also confirmed amendments enabling it to use “scientific” age assessments to stop adult asylum seekers claiming to be children in order to boost their chances of success.
These are expected to include X-rays of bones, as revealed by The Telegraph, and will be overseen by a new specialist age assessment unit. There will also be a new statutory route to appeal rather than seeing courts bogged down with judicial reviews.
Ministers are pressing ahead with an electronic travel authorisation scheme where all overseas visitors, including those from the EU, will have to apply for permission to enter the UK before starting their journey. This will provide a chance to screen arrivals in advance of them setting off.
They will also expand the types of claims that can be handled via an accelerated appeal from detention, so that more cases can be resolved while the person is in detention rather than them being released into the community including foreign national offenders.
Changes to the Special Immigration Appeals Commission Act 1997 will safeguard sensitive material. This will mean that legal challenges on immigration decisions which involve sensitive information can be heard by a court that specialises in protecting sensitive information.