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The first reading of the Illegal Migration Bill took place in the House of Commons on 7th March 2023. The Bill, in its current form, creates a group of people who will be subject to a duty to deport and a power to detain. Refugees, and others within this group with international protection needs, are denied the ability to be recognised and protected as such. The Bill also removes rights from those who have been trafficked and subjected to modern slavery. The post is in two parts. First, a summary of the Bill’s main clauses, second, an initial analysis from an international legal perspective. As will become apparent, the Bill, if passed, denies protection contrary to UK’s international legal obligations. Both this denial of protection, and the distress and violence that the envisaged deportations and detentions will entail, are legally and morally wrong.

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Faculty of Law, University of Oxford

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