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22 Oct 2002 : Column 235Wcontinued
Mr. Swayne: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assistance is afforded to asylum seekers to prepare their cases when they are unfamiliar with the English language; and if he will make a statement. 
Beverley Hughes: Asylum applicants are provided with help in a language that they understand at all stages of the asylum process. Interpreters are available free of charge for all dealings with the Immigration and Nationality Directorate (IND).
When an asylum application is made at a port or in country at a Screening Unit, an interpreter will be provided to help the applicant through the screening process. Where an applicant is given a Statement of Evidence Form (SEF) to complete they are provided with explanatory notes both in English and one of 33 languages. The explanatory notes set out what is expected of the applicant and the possible consequences should they fail to comply with our requests. An interpreter will be provided for any substantive interview conducted with the applicant. The applicant will previously have been asked on the SEF or during the screening process to give details of the language and dialect in which they would prefer to be interviewed.
If an applicant is to be sent to the Oakington Reception Centre they will be given a leaflet, translated into 29 languages, which explains how their application will be considered. Interpreters are provided on site.
Beverley Hughes: The latest available statistics on removals relate to 2001. These show that 48,155 persons (rounded to five) were removed from the United Kingdom under Immigration Act powers. This includes persons departing ''voluntary'' after being refused entry or after enforcement action had been initiated against them but excludes persons departing under the Assisted Voluntary Returns Programme run by the International Organisation for Migration.
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Mr. Gerrard: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what percentage of asylum seekers making in-country applications have applied having been in the country (a) less than one month, (b) from one to three months, (c) from three to six months, (d) from six months to one year and (e) more than one year in the last three years. 
Of the 20,400 applications lodged by principal applicants in the second quarter of 2002, 13,850 (68 per cent.) were lodged in-country. However, it is not possible to determine in what year these applicants first entered the United Kingdom, or whether they are currently living in the United Kingdom.
Mr. Luff: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he expects to submit a planning notification to Wychavon District Council in relation to the proposed asylum accommodation centre at Throckmorton. 
John Barrett: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what progress has been made since June 2002 in the determination of the suitability of RAF Turnhouse for an asylum seeker accommodation centre. 
Beverley Hughes: Those sites still under consideration, including RAF Turnhouse, are being evaluated under a wide range of criteria. We will reach a decision as soon as possible on the suitability of RAF Turnhouse. However, immediate priority is being given to the three sites for which it has been decided to submit planning notifications.
John Barrett: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what impact the ''Future Development of Air Transport'' consultation document has had on the consideration of RAF Turnhouse as an asylum seeker accommodation centre; 
Beverley Hughes: The Home Office and Department of Transport are aware of each others plans and are discussing the implications. We announced on May 14 that further work was required on the Edinburgh site before a decision could be taken on whether to submit a planning notification. An announcement will be made about our intentions in due course.
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Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) if he has discussed with his French counterpart the proposal of placing British officials in French cross-channel ports to assist in detecting clandestine immigrants coming to the UK via France; and if he will make a statement; 
Beverley Hughes: My right hon. Friend the Home Secretary last met his French counterpart, Nicolas Sarkozy, on 26 September in Calais. Their discussions of measures to counter clandestine migration have concentrated for the most part on the Channel Tunnel and the port of Calais. However, the two Governments recognise that as the security of these two routes is tightened, clandestine illegal entrants may try to use other ports. On 26 September the two Ministers therefore discussed possibilities for extending UK Immigration Service presence to other French ports, as well as for posting of French officers to UK ports.
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Mr. Wilkinson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what proportion in percentage terms of applications for political asylum in the United Kingdom have met the criteria established in the Geneva Convention on refugees in the last five years. 
Beverley Hughes: An estimated 19 per cent. of applications received in 2001 were granted refugee status, i.e. were successful in their application to be granted refugee status under the 1951 UN Convention. It is estimated that a further 23 per cent. were granted Exceptional Leave to Remain (ELR). These estimates include the outcomes of reconsidered cases and outcomes of appeals at the Immigration Appellate Authority. Of applications received in 2000, an estimated 19 per cent. were granted refugee status and a further 14 per cent. were granted ELR.
This analysis is unavailable for other periods. Tables 1 and 2, show initial decisions and adjudicator appeals made in the last five years. However, the initial decisions made in each period do not all necessarily relate to the applications lodged in the same period, and similarly the appeals determined do not all necessarily relate to initial decisions made in that period. These data exclude the outcomes of any reconsidered cases.
|Total Initial Decisions(13)||Cases considered under normal procedures(14)||Number of principal applicants Backlog clearance exercise(15)|
|Total||Granted asylum||Granted ELR||Refused||Total||Granted asylum or ELR||Refused under backlog|
(11) Figures rounded to the nearest 5, with * = 1 or 2.
(12) Decision figures do not necessarily relate to applications received in the same period.
(13) Information is of initial decisions, excluding the outcome of appeals or other subsequent decisions.
(14) Cases considered under normal procedures may include some cases decided under the backlog criteria.
(15) Cases decided under measures aimed at reducing the pre 1996 asylum application backlog.
(16) Includes some cases where the application has been refused on substantive grounds.
Figures for 2001 are provisional and subject to change.
(17) Figures (other than percentages) rounded to the nearest 5.
(18) Appeals figures do not necessarily relate to initial decisions made in the same period.
Figures for 2001 are provisional and subject to change.
Information on asylum applications, initial decisions and appeals is published regularly on the Home Office Research Development and Statistics Directorate web site at http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/immigration 1.html.
Mr. Wilkinson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what percentage of appeals lodged in the United Kingdom against the refusal of an application for political asylum have been upheld in the last five years. 
Figures include appeals against grants of exceptional leave to enter and remain. Appeals at different tiers (Immigration Appellate Authority and the Immigration Appeals Tribunal) do not necessarily relate to one
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another. The figures exclude subsequent appeals (court of appeal, judicial review and the House of Lords). When an asylum claim is certified under schedule 4 of the 1999 Act and the adjudicator agrees the certificate, there is no right to apply to the Tribunal for permission to appeal further. Only a minority of applications for leave to appeal to the Tribunal are granted.
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Information on asylum appeals is published quarterly. The next publication will be available from 29 November 2002 on the Home Office Research Development and Statistics Directorate web site at http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/immigration 1.html.
|Asylum Appeals Determined by the IAA(20)||Number Allowed(21)||As % of Total Determined||Number Dismissed(21)||As % of Total Determined||Number Withdrawn(21)||As % of Total Determined|
(19) Figures rounded to the nearest five.
(20) Based on information supplied by the Lord Chancellor's Department.
(21) Based on data supplied by the Presenting Officers Unit within the Home Office.
|Asylum Appeals Determined by the IAT(23),(24)||Appellant(25) AllowedDismissedWithdrawn||Secretary of State(25) AllowedDismissedWithdrawn|
|2000||2,635||650 (32%)||1,225 (59%)||185 (9%)||170 (46%)||165 (45%)||35 (10%)|
|2001||3,190||315 (21%)||1,020 (70%)||125 (9%)||160 (53%)||120 (40%)||25 (8%)|
(22) Figures rounded to the nearest five.
(23) Includes cases remitted back to the IAA (not shown on this table).
(24) Based on information supplied by the Lord Chancellor's Department.
(25) Based on data supplied by the Presenting Officers Unit within the Home Office.
.. = not available.
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