The Independent | News | UK and Worldwide News

https://www.independent.co.uk

  • Facebook launches ‘smart glasses’ that take photos of what you’re seeing, and warns that people will try and use them inappropriately | The Independent
    https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/facebook-rayban-smart-glasses-photos-b1913757.html

    The other major concern users might have over the Ray-Ban Stories is Facebook’s history of data privacy. The company has been repeatedly criticised over its failure to protect users’ data, and the amount on information that it collects as people use its services.

    Moreover, smart glasses as a technology have also been infamous for their inherent risk to privacy. Ray-Ban Stories collects data about battery status, and the email address and password of the users’ Facebook account, and additional data like the number of images captured or how long a user spends taking videos can also be provided to Facebook.

    Preempting this response, Facebook says that it designed the glasses with “privacy in mind” and claims it will not use this data to target users with ads. One of these privacy-focused design choices is a small LED light hardwired to the camera (like the green light on Apple’s Mac computers) that shines white when the camera is taking a photo.

  • Hundreds of Afghan refugees housed in hotels ‘at risk of missing vital health and education services’

    Charities concerned about level of support provided to families in hotels.

    Hundreds of Afghan refugees who have arrived in the UK in recent months are being forced to live in hotels and are at risk of missing out on vital health and education services, charities have warned.

    (#paywall)

    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/afghan-hotels-families-home-office-uk-b1905889.html

    #hôtels #asile #migrations #réfugiés #UK #Angleterre #réfugiés_afghans

    –-
    ajouté à la métaliste #migrations et #tourisme :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/770799
    et plus précisément ici :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/770799#message927668

  • CDC to hold ‘emergency meeting’ over cases of heart inflammation following second Covid vaccine | The Independent
    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/myocarditis-covid-vaccine-heart-inflammation-b1864343.html#Echobox=16

    Myocarditis is a condition that causes inflammation of the heart muscle. It typically develops from a viral infection, and it can cause symptoms like fatigue, fever and chest pain.

    Preliminary data indicates cases of heart issues following vaccination were happening in those ages 16 to 24, with young men impacted more than women. Most of the cases came after the second dose of either Pfizer or Moderna’s vaccine, the preliminary data revealed.

    This information comes one month after Israel’s health ministry said there was a “probable link” between Pfizer’s vaccine and inflammation of the heart muscles in young men.

  • Le rail privé britannique, ce mort-vivant… Michaël Verbauwhede

    Trains hors de prix, en retard, souvent annulés : même le gouvernement de Boris Johnson doit reconnaître que la privatisation du rail anglais est un échec. Mais plutôt que de le renationaliser comme le demandent deux tiers des Britanniques, il a décidé de relooker la privatisation du rail. Explications.

    En 1994, la Royaume-Uni privatisait l’ensemble de son chemin de fer. Transport de passagers, vente de tickets, entretien des voies… tout allait mieux rouler avec le privé : moins de retards, plus de services, des tickets moins chers.


    Deux tiers des Britanniques demandent la renationalisation du rail anglais. (Photo : We own it)

    Mais très vite, le rail anglais dépérit : de nombreux accidents ont eu lieu, dont le terrible accident de Hatfield (4 morts) dus à un mauvais entretien des voies. Le service se dégrade et les tarifs sont de plus en plus chers. Les Britanniques dépensent en moyenne 14 % de leur salaire mensuel pour faire la navette https://www.latribune.fr/economie/union-europeenne/au-royaume-uni-la-privatisation-des-chemins-de-fer-deraille-628489.html , contre 2 % en France par exemple. Un jeune YouTubeur fait ainsi le calcul qu’il lui revient moins cher de faire le trajet de Sheffield (nord de l’Angleterre) à Essex (est de Londres) en passant par Berlin en avion, plutôt que de prendre le train. https://www.independent.co.uk/travel/news-and-advice/teenager-flies-from-sheffield-to-essex-via-berlin-because-it-is-cheap

    Enfin, les conditions de travail se dégradent, comme en témoigne le splendide film de Ken Loach, The Navigators

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Gzdrqd4uQE


    The Navigators|2002| VOSTFR ~ WebRip

    Les opérateurs privés en ont par contre tiré des profits importants. Le syndicat anglais TUC a ainsi calculé que les actionnaires des compagnies privées avaient reçu un milliard de livres (environ 1,16 milliards d’euros) en dividendes entre 2013 et 2018.

    La privatisation du rail au Royaume-Uni en 1994 est donc un échec. Suite aux accidents à répétition, le gouvernement britannique avait déjà renationalisé la gestion de l’infrastructure en 2002, en créant Network Rail.

    Même la droite reconnait l’échec
    Mais les retards, les tarifs élevés et la mauvaise qualité du service n’ont pas arrêté pour autant. Les syndicats et voyageurs ont continué à dénoncer l’échec de la privatisation et à réclamer une renationalisation. Deux tiers de la population soutient cette reprise de contrôle public. https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/rail-chaos-denationalisation-chris-grayling-labour-two-thirds-bmg-res Sous la direction de Corbyn, le Labour avait également fait campagne en ce sens.

    L’échec du système est visible par tous. Sous pression, de l’opinion publique et des syndicats, le gouvernement de Boris Johnson a été obligé de le reconnaître, dans un rapport qui vient de sortir. Il met donc fin au système tant décrié des franchises. Ce système donnait l’exclusivité à une compagnie privée de faire rouler des trains sur une région ou des lignes bien déterminées. Sur cette franchise, la compagnie fixait les tarifs qu’elle souhaitait.

    Même morte, la privatisation du rail britannique vit encore...
    Dorénavant, une structure ferroviaire nationale unique (Great British Railways) est rétablie, avec un seul système de billetterie. Mais le gouvernement n’en tire pas toutes les conclusions. Car les compagnies privées restent toujours impliquées pour la circulation des trains, par des délégations de services (le public fixe les horaires et tarifs et le privé exploite les trains).

    Le communiqué du gouvernement est assez clair à ce sujet : « ce n’est pas une renationalisation (…) mais une simplification. Si Great British Railways joue le rôle d’âme dirigeante pour coordonner l’ensemble du réseau, notre plan prévoit une plus grande participation du secteur privé ». Et de citer les façons dont le privé pourra s’impliquer dans le transport ferroviaire : faire circuler les trains, innover dans la vente de billets…

    Le gouvernement continue donc à financer les profits du privé avec de l’argent public et celui des voyageurs. Il reste dans une logique de marché. Le groupe d’action We own it, qui se bat pour la renationalisation de toute une série de services publics, estime que cette décision n’est qu’une « privatisation relookée ». Les syndicats soupçonnent qu’il y aura encore des coupes budgétaires et que les profits continueront à aller au privé. https://www.rfi.fr/fr/europe/20210520-royaume-uni-le-gouvernement-d%C3%A9voile-sa-r%C3%A9forme-du-rail

    L’Écosse montre qu’un autre modèle est possible
    Le débat sur la renationalisation du rail au Royaume-Uni fait rage depuis des années. Sous pression, l’Écosse et le Pays de Galle avaient été beaucoup plus loin. L’Écosse a ainsi décidé de renationaliser l’entièreté de son rail en mars 2021, car l’opérateur privé (Abellio filiale de la NS néérlandaise) n’atteignait pas ses objectifs. Fini le privé (contrairement au plan du gouvernement de Boris Johnson), c’est une entreprise publique qui fera désormais rouler les trains en Écosse. Cette entreprise conservera l’ensemble du personnel. Les syndicats et organisations de gauche attendent beaucoup de cette véritable renationalisation écossaise.

    La lutte pour la renationalisation du rail en Angleterre n’est donc pas terminée. Mais cette nouvelle tentative de la droite pour maintenir coûte que coûte la privatisation du rail britannique montre qu’elle est sur la défensive. Elle a du reconnaître que la privatisation des années ‘90 était un échec. Et les syndicats, voyageurs et mouvement de gauche ont déjà annoncé la couleur : ils continueront à se battre pour reconstruire un rail public.

    Source : https://www.solidaire.org/articles/le-rail-prive-britannique-ce-mort-vivant

    #royaume-uni #trains #banlieue #privatisation #Network_Rail #boris_johnson #Great_British_Railway #délégations_de_services #Écosse

  • Home Office’s rush to deport asylum seekers before Brexit was ‘inhumane’, watchdog finds

    ‘Unprecedented levels of self-harm and suicidal thoughts’ were recorded at the #Brook_House_Immigration_Removal_Centre in late 2020

    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/brexit-asylum-seekers-home-office-b1850796.html
    #suicides #santé_mentale #UK #Angleterre #asile #migrations #réfugiés #détention_administrative #rétention #statistiques #chiffres #2020

    #paywall

  • Has anyone bothered to think about the staff working at quarantine hotels? | The Independent
    https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/quarantine-hotels-covid-red-list-migrant-workers-b1802864.html

    The government’s quarantine scheme requires 11 days of hotel isolation for travelers entering the UK from a “red list” of countries. But the entire initiative risks being undermined by policies which make it impossible for workers in the hotel industry to protect themselves from the spread of infection.We need to confront the possibility of the virus spreading between guests and staff, who must be able to take time off work to isolate if there is a risk they could have come into contact with an infected person. However, a low rate of statutory sick pay, alongside restrictions, especially for migrant workers, on access to financial support, means isolating from work can lead to destitution for many people in these jobs.
    The government needs to raise statutory sick pay from £95 per week, one of the lowest in Europe and utterly insufficient to support a family for 10 days or more of isolation. It also needs to scrap No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF), which keeps migrant workers in poverty, and expand access to its one-off isolation payments of £500. Without these measures, workers in these hotels will face the impossible choice between isolating to protect their health and feeding their families. The hospitality sector in the UK has the highest proportion of migrant workers, making up 30 per cent of the workforce. Most migrants living and working in the UK are automatically subject to NRPF, leaving them unable to access the public safety net, including universal credit, child benefit, income support or housing benefit, regardless of their financial circumstances.
    Red list countries: Full list of 33 nations where hotel quarantine rules apply ‘I guess this means it is okay for me to be violated’ – migrant women have been forgotten in the domestic abuse bill. Long before the pandemic, NRPF conditions were causing severe financial hardship for migrants. For migrant workers in the hospitality sector, an industry hit particularly hard by the pandemic, job losses combined with NRPF conditions have meant they are unable to say “no” to high-risk working conditions and low pay. Throughout this pandemic, we have seen how frontline workers, often in low-paid work, have kept our country going. Yet these are the workers who are consistently undervalued by the government and by employers, despite the fact they have kept our shops open, our transports systems running and our shared spaces clean. The new mandatory hotel quarantine scheme is no exception. The responsibility for lowering Covid-19 transmission across our borders has fallen to low-paid hotel workers, security staff and cleaners. It is them ensuring that the scheme runs smoothly and safely. Low rates of sick pay and a reliance on the statutory minimum wage is prevalent in hospitality contracts, and even more so in cleaning and security contracts, which are often outsourced to agencies, and where insecure and zero-hours contracts are common.

    #Covid-19#migrant#migration#grandebretagne#sante#hotelquarantaine#travailleurmigrant#travailleurpremiereligne#frontiere#economie

  • Israel rebuffs WHO vaccine request for Palestinian medics, amid outcry over disparity
    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/israel-palestine-coronavirus-vaccine-b1784474.html

    Israel has refused a request from the World Health Organisation (WHO) to immediately make Covid-19 vaccines available to Palestinian medical workers to avert a health disaster, citing shortages of the jabs for their own citizens.

    The refusal comes amid growing criticism from rights groups of the massive discrepancy between the vaccine rollout in Israel and the occupied West Bank and Gaza, given Israel’s legal obligations as an occupying power.

  • Google in court again over ‘right to be above British law’ on alleged secret monitoring
    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/google-challenges-high-court-decision-alleged-secret-monitoring-99114

    A legal battle involving Google resumed today in a landmark trial that will decide whether or not British courts are the appropriate forum for dealing with claims of ‘secret tracking’ by the internet giant. Facing allegations that it used “clandestine” tracking to monitor British users of the Safari web browser, Google unsuccessfully argued earlier this year that, while there were occasions when it could be sued in the UK, on this occasion the High Court did not have jurisdiction to try the (...)

    #Apple #Google #Safari #smartphone #Android #profiling #ICO-UK #écoutes #surveillance #iOS (...)

    ##microtargeting

  • Millionaire Kelly Loeffler mocked for ad claiming she knows what it ‘feels like waiting on that paycheck’
    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-election-2020/kelly-loeffler-net-worth-georgia-senator-ad-b1764209.html

    Millionaire Senator Kelly Loeffler was mocked for an ad claiming she knows what “it feels like waiting on that paycheck.”

    Ms Loeffler, who is fighting to retain her Georgia seat, is married to the chairman of the New York Stock Exchange, Jeffrey Sprecher.

    She is reportedly the wealthiest member of congress with a fortune estimated at between $800m and $1bn, according to Forbes.

  • #Coronavirus : Scientists call for action after 50-fold rise in infections in schools | The Independent
    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/independent-sage-coronavirus-infection-schools-b1762906.html

    En #Angleterre multiplication par 50 des infections dans les #écoles ; les #enfants/adolescents de 11 à 16 ans sont désormais le groupe d’âge avec les niveaux d’infection les plus élevés.

    Professor Stephen Reicher of the University of St Andrews, of Independent Sage, said: “In the summer, the government effectively abandoned schools, requiring them to be safe but without providing the support or the resources to make this possible.

    “As a result, far too many of our children are left in crowded, badly ventilated classrooms; infections have increased 50-fold since September; one in five students are off school; and all this is now putting the whole community at risk.

    “The government must acknowledge its error and change direction. We must act urgently to make schools safe.”

    #sars-cov2 #covid-19

  • Domestic abusers winning time with children by accusing mothers of parental alienation, study finds | The Independent | The Independent
    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/domestic-abuse-parental-alienation-family-courts-brunel-study-a929472

    Dr Adrienne Barnett, who carried out the research, said these cases were just the “tip of the iceberg” as the study had not looked at the thousands of cases heard by district and magistrate courts every day that are not published in the official court reports she examined.

    “There will be thousands of cases where parental alienation is raised but we do not know what happens,” Dr Barnett, a senior lecturer in law who specialises in domestic abuse and the family courts, told The Independent.

    “Playing the parental alienation card is proving more powerful than any other in silencing the voices of women and children resisting contact with abusive men. Parental alienation is not an equal counterpart to domestic abuse, it is a means of obscuring domestic abuse, and should be recognised as such”.

    Dr Barnett, who specialised in family law while practising as a barrister for more than 30 years, said the theory of parental alienation had been slated and discredited by many experts but was now becoming more mainstream.

  • Auf wiedersehen, #Tegel: the long goodbye to West #Berlin | The Independent

    https://www.independent.co.uk/travel/news-and-advice/tegel-airport-berlin-brandenburg-british-airways-twa-pan-am-b1561253.

    Despite the mandatory mask, my final flight into Berlin Tegel airport was far more comfortable than the first.

    On Friday evening, I paid British Airways £71. On Saturday morning I caught a train to London Heathrow airport. An hour later, I boarded an Airbus A320 that climbed to 39,000ft, and above Hanover began a slow and gentle descent to the German capital.

    In January 1989, the experience was rather different. First I paid TWA £75 for a return flight from Gatwick to Frankfurt. Then I paid Pan Am £99 return to continue to West Berlin.

    The further the Cold War recedes into the past, the weirder it seems. At the start of the year in which the Berlin Wall came down, flying on one now-extinct US airline to West Germany then changing to another now-defunct American carrier for a domestic flight to reach a city divided by a lethal barrier seemed almost normal.

    #allemagne #aéroport #dfs #transports #avion #infrastructure #trop_tard

  • La fermeture des écoles est une des mesures les plus efficaces pour limiter la transmission du coronavirus, selon une étude comparée
    https://www.rtbf.be/info/societe/detail_la-fermeture-des-ecoles-est-une-des-mesures-les-plus-efficaces-pour-limi

    Après une semaine, les effets de la fermeture des écoles montrent qu’elle est tout aussi efficace que celle des entreprises et de l’interdiction des événements publics. Après 4 semaines, il s’avère que c’est cette dernière qui est la plus efficace (taux de reproduction ramené à 0,76), mais que la fermeture des écoles (taux à 0,85) reste plus utile que celle des entreprises (0,87).

    C’est toutefois la combinaison de ces mesures qui se montre le plus efficace : en combinant ces trois mesures et l’interdiction des rassemblements de plus de 10 personnes, la transmission est réduite à plus de 50% après 28 jours.

    Article basé sur cette étude publiée dans The Lancet : The temporal association of introducing and lifting non-pharmaceutical interventions with the time-varying reproduction number (R) of SARS-CoV-2 : a modelling study across 131 countries
    https://www.thelancet.com/journals/laninf/article/PIIS1473-3099(20)30785-4/fulltext

  • Nasa to make major announcement of ‘exciting news’ about the moon
    https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/nasa-moon-announcement-when-watch-mission-b1209506.html

    Nasa will hold a major event to announce an “exciting new discovery” about the Moon, it has said.

    The space agency did not reveal details about the discovery, but said that it “contributes to Nasa’s efforts to learn about the Moon in support of deep space exploration”.

    Là j’en suis certain : ils ont trouvé des artefacts extraterrestres. Ou une grande dalle noire. Ou un temple égyptien. Ou ils vont annoncer qu’ils y ont une base habitée dirigée par Martin Landau depuis les années 70. Ou qu’elle n’existe pas et qu’en fait c’est juste une image projetée sur l’immense écran LCD qui nous sert de ciel. Ou qu’ils y ont retrouvé les lunettes de Stanley Kubrick. Ou, évidemment, qu’elle est constituée de Wensleydale ou de Stilton.

    Arg, c’t’angoisse…

    • On pourra admirer, une fois de plus, la maîtrise de l’art de la communication par la NASA. Ce teasing de dingue sur le thème « On a découvert un truc super-important, mais on ne vous le dira que lundi », c’est tout de même quelque chose (de pas totalement scientifique)…

      On se croirait à un lancement d’iPhone chez Apple. Je serais pas surpris qu’ils annoncent leur découverte avec une vidéo remplie de gros plans sur des trucs qui tournent au ralenti, avec Jony Ive qui fait la voix off.

    • La Nasa ne fait pas mystère que parmi les experts invités pour présenter sa découverte ce lundi, il y aura Casey Honniball, postdoctorante au Goddard Space Flight Center de la Nasa (Greenbelt, Maryland).

      Google et la toile mondiale fournissent rapidement à son sujet des informations qui laissent peu de doutes à avoir. Casey Honniball a en effet passé sa thèse de doctorat sur la possibilité de détecter de l’eau sur la Lune grâce aux observations dans l’infrarouge possibles avec Sofia. Un des articles que l’astronome a publié est très révélateur également.

      https://www.futura-sciences.com/sciences/actualites/lune-nasa-va-t-elle-annoncer-decouverte-monolithe-noir-lune-83811

  • US push for Arab-Israel ties divides Sudanese leaders U.S. country Government israel ties
    Via AP news wire | 4 oct 2020 | The Independent
    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/us-push-arabisrael-ties-divides-sudanese-leaders-us-government-ties-i

    While Sudan’s transitional government has been negotiating the terms of removing the country from the list for more than a year, U.S. officials introduced the linkage to normalization with Israel more recently.

    Top Sudanese military leaders who govern jointly with civilian technocrats in a Sovereign Council, have become increasingly vocal in their support for normalization with Israel as part of a quick deal with Washington ahead of the U.S. election.

    “Now, whether we like it or not, the removal (of Sudan from the terror list) is tied to (normalization) with Israel,” the deputy head of the council, Gen. Mohammed Dagalo, told a local television station on Friday.

    “We need Israel ... Israel is a developed country and the whole world is working with it,” he said. “We will have benefits from such relations ... We hope all look at Sudan’s interests.”

    Such comments would have been unthinkable until recently in a country where public hostility toward Israel remains strong. (...)

    #IsraelSoudan #Israfrique

  • #Priti_Patel derided over #Royal_Navy threat towards France as Home Office’s approach to migrants is questioned

    Priti Patel’s threat to send the Royal Navy into the English Channel has been derided and her department’s border policy questioned on Twitter.

    The home secretary’s threats come after suggestions a record number of migrants crossed the Channel on Thursday.

    The BBC reports up to 235 migrants made the perilous journey across Britain’s maritime border with France, bringing the total of arrivals since January at nearly 3,900 people.

    https://twitter.com/Otto_English/status/1291633665475334145?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E12

    According to a Home Office source in the Daily Mail, Patel has accused France’s border force of deliberately allowing migrants to make the crossing and has now threatened to deploy the Royal Navy to tow any new arrivals back to France.

    The move could be illegal under international maritime law and risks alienating the French government, who has partnered with the Home Office to stem the flow of crossings.

    Patel has said the Navy may be used to deploy floating “booms” to block the way for migrant dinghies or stop boats by clogging their propellers with nets.

    A government source acknowledged these were “all [the] options that are being considered”. The source added: “She [Patel] has instructed her officials to speak to the Ministry of Defence about how we can proceed. She has also requested a discussion with the French interior minister, Gerald Darmanin.”

    People vented their frustration with the approach on Twitter, while others questioned the effectiveness.

    Otto English wrote: “When Priti Patel says she ‘wants to send in the Navy’ to stop Channel migrant crossings - what’s her intention? Are warships going to fire shells at kids in rubber dinghies? Is a destroyer going to run them over? What are they going to do that the Border Force isn’t?”

    Rae Richardson called it a load of “meaningless posturing”. “It’s just a load of meaningless posturing to make the government seem effective. (Good luck with that!),” he wrote.

    “The Royal Navy have no authority in French waters so they can’t escort any boats out of UK waters, i.e. they can only do what Border Force are already doing.”

    Michael Moran said: “Sending a gunboat is a tried and trusted method of making things worse.”

    In October, Patel made a pledge to eliminate crossings by spring and negotiated a deal with French authorities.

    The news comes as footage of migrants arriving on the Kent coastline on Thursday surfaced on social media.

    The boat carrying the asylum seekers had ten young children and a heavily pregnant woman, among others, on board.

    In the footage, the woman is seen holding her head in her hands and appears weary while one of the children lays exhausted on the pebbled beach with his arms spread out.

    The Daily Mail suggested the total number of asylum seekers reaching Britain this year is double that from 2019. It failed to provide an explanation for the spike.

    https://www.theneweuropean.co.uk/top-stories/priti-patel-mocked-on-twitter-over-daily-mail-royal-navy-threat-1-

    #UK #Angleterre #France #frontières #Manche #asile #migrations #réfugiés #militarisation_des_frontières #Calais #armée
    ping @isskein

    • ‘Inappropriate and disproportionate’: Priti Patel suggestion to use navy to combat migrant crossings attacked by MoD

      Priti Patel is discussing using the royal navy to tackle the number of migrants crossing the Channel, prompting accusations from Ministry of Defence sources that the idea is “inappropriate and disproportionate”.

      While facing increasing pressure from MPs on her own back benches, the home secretary also called on France to help prevent people coming to the UK’s shores.

      At least 235 people arrived on small boats on Thursday – a new high for a single day.

      The Home Office is yet to provide a full breakdown of the crossings, meaning the total number could be higher still.

      The home secretary is understood to be keen to know what royal navy vessels and other assets could be deployed.

      It is thought they would be expected to stop boats and send them back to France.

      But a Ministry of Defence source told the PA news agency the idea of using the navy was “completely potty” and could put lives at risk.

      “It is a completely inappropriate and disproportionate approach to take,” they said.

      “We don’t resort to deploying armed force to deal with political failings.

      “It’s beyond absurd to think that we should be deploying multimillion-pound ships and elite soldiers to deal with desperate people barely staying afloat on rubber dinghies in the Channel.

      “It could potentially put people’s lives at even greater risk.

      “Border Force is effectively the Home Office’s own navy fleet, so it begs the question: what are they doing?”

      Ms Patel is facing increasing calls, including from Tory MPs, to deal with the issue.

      The Commons Home Affairs Committee has announced that it has launched an investigation into the crossings.

      Tobias Ellwood, the Conservative MP and chair of the Commons Defence Committee, backed the use of navy patrols.

      Natalie Elphicke, the Tory MP for Dover, also backed the use of the royal navy, saying: “All options need to be on the table.”
      Immigration minister Chris Philp said he shares “the anger and frustration of the public” at the “appalling number” of crossings.

      Mr Philp is to visit France next week to speak with counterparts following what is understood to have been a “constructive” meeting with the country’s deputy ambassador earlier this week.

      Earlier Ms Patel appeared to call on France to do more.

      She tweeted that the number of illegal small boat crossings was “appalling and unacceptably high” and said she was working to make the route unviable.

      She added: “We also need the cooperation of the French to intercept boats and return migrants back to France.”

      Almost 4,000 migrants have crossed the Channel to the UK so far this year, according to analysis by PA.

      Bella Sankey, director of charity Detention Action, said the numbers showed the Home Office had “lost control and all credibility on this issue, fuelling chaos, criminality and untold trauma for those who feel forced to make these dangerous crossings.”

      Resorting to tougher enforcement was “naive grandstanding”, she said.

      “What is needed is recognition that people who reach France will have valid claims to protection in the UK and the urgent development of safe and legal routes for them to do so.

      “This would end the crossings overnight.”

      Yvette Cooper, chair of the Commons Home Affairs Committee, said it was “particularly troubling to see children being put at risk”.

      Christine Jardine, Liberal Democrat home affairs spokesperson, said: “No one wants to see people making these perilous attempts to cross the Channel. It’s heartbreaking to think how desperate people must be to cram themselves into tiny boats and try.

      “The Tories have been trying the same approach of getting tough on Channel crossings for years, but it’s failed.

      “The only way to prevent these dangerous crossings is to ensure there are safe, legal routes to the UK – especially for vulnerable refugees fleeing war and persecution.”

      https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/priti-patel-migrants-channel-royal-navy-record-a9659346.html

    • The Guardian view on Channel migrants: shame on the scaremongers

      Ministers should respond with compassion and pragmatism to an upsurge in arrivals of small boats. Instead, we get histrionics

      What do the images of cramped dinghies in the Channel make you feel when you see them? Or pictures of their passengers on the decks of grey Border Force vessels, or disembarking on beaches? More than 4,100 migrants and refugees have reached the UK this year so far in small boats, most of them arriving in Kent. Almost 600 arrived in a surge of crossings between Thursday and Sunday last week.

      While they remain a tiny proportion of the total number of asylum seekers in the UK, which was 35,566 in 2019, the steep increase in arrivals has thrust immigration and asylum back to the top of the news. But the hate mill has been grinding away for months, with the Brexit party leader, Nigel Farage, using his social media channels and appearances to churn up public anxiety about what these migrants might do when they get here – while crushing out any grains of more generous impulses.

      There is no question that the crossings are a problem. The Channel is the world’s busiest shipping lane. Unlicensed journeys in small boats across the Mediterranean have ended in disaster. The new arrivals include children, around 400 of whom are being looked after by Kent county council.

      No one knows exactly why the traffic has increased so much. Boris Johnson and his ministers, as well as Mr Farage, appear determined to amplify the role of traffickers. But the more likely explanation could be that the pandemic has made entering the UK by other means (air, lorry, ferry) harder, while the weather has made crossing by boat safer than at other times. The conditions at Calais are awful. Far worse are the political and humanitarian situations in many of the countries where the migrants come from – Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Sudan – and from which they view the UK as their longed-for safe haven.

      Whatever the reasons for the surge, the UK government’s reaction has been reprehensible. Migration is a difficult global issue that requires international cooperation. For European democracies, with long histories of entanglement with many of the nations that people are fleeing, it presents particular challenges. But having set their face against the EU with their campaign to “take back control” and lacking a plan to replace the Dublin Convention, which enables EU countries to remove some asylum seekers, ministers now appear to be panicking.

      How else to describe the threats by the home secretary, Priti Patel, to make the navy force boats back to France, or the creation of the new post of “clandestine Channel threat commander”? What does it mean for Boris Johnson to declare crossing the Channel in a small boat to be “dangerous and criminal”, when people have the right to travel to claim asylum under UN rules dating back to 1951?

      Not a single refugee has been legally resettled in the UK since March, when an existing scheme was suspended due to Covid-19. Restarting this system (or explaining when the pause will end), so that claims can be processed without people having to present themselves first, is the obvious route back to some form of order. Serious talks with the EU, above all France, will obviously require give as well as take. Last year Germany processed 165,615 asylum claims, and France 151,070. Neither they nor other governments are obliged to help the UK out.

      Two years ago Donald Trump showed the world how low an elected western leader could go on migration with his policy of separating families at the Mexican border. This week, the UK’s home secretary was singled out for praise by our most xenophobic national political figure, Mr Farage. Ms Patel, and more importantly her boss, Mr Johnson, a man who purports to venerate Winston Churchill and the postwar international order that was his legacy, should both be ashamed.

      https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/aug/10/the-guardian-view-on-channel-migrants-shame-on-the-scaremongers

    • Refugees crossing Channel tell of beatings by French police

      Asylum seekers give accounts of injuries, as Priti Patel says many refugees feel France is racist.

      Asylum seekers in the UK and France have described injuries they have received at the hands of French police, as Priti Patel said many were making the perilous journey across the Channel because they believe France is racist.

      The home secretary made her comments in a conference call with Conservative MPs concerned about the recent surge in numbers attempting the voyage in small boats.

      One man in Dunkirk told the Guardian he had recently received injuries to his hands after French police beat him.

      Another man who has reached the UK said he was struck in the face, causing injuries to his eyes. “I was beaten very badly by the French police. I have some injuries to my eyes and I’m still suffering from these injuries,” he said. “The French police are very bad for asylum seekers.”
      Guardian Today: the headlines, the analysis, the debate - sent direct to you
      Read more

      According to reports, Patel told Conservative MPs that refugees and migrants were worried they may be “tortured” in France. Government sources told PA Media that she had made clear she did not share those views and was simply explaining the “pull factors” that led so many people to risk their lives by making the Channel crossing.

      Clare Moseley, of Care4Calais, a charity that works with many asylum seekers in northern France, expressed concern about some of the French police’s treatment of asylum seekers that she had witnessed. “The police seem to be a law unto themselves, “ she said. “It’s the culture I find so shocking.”

      A number of asylum seekers have said one of their reasons for crossing the Channel was to escape police violence, which is especially traumatic for those who have survived torture in their home countries. Another reason cited was the long delay after making an asylum claim before they receive accommodation or support.

      Orsi Hardi, of the Taise Community, which supports and cares for many asylum seekers who congregate in northern France, said many believed reaching the UK was their last chance to find safety after a difficult journey through mainland Europe.

      “The only way to stay in France at the moment is to claim asylum, and the system is overloaded, which makes it very inhuman during the time when people are waiting to get accommodation and support,” she said.

      The Guardian has learned that more people who crossed the Channel in small boats were rounded up by the Home Office on Thursday and Friday and placed in Brook House immigration detention centre near Gatwick airport.

      More than a dozen of them say they have gone on hunger strike. The men, who have come from a variety of conflict zones including Yemen and Sudan, say they would rather die in the UK than be sent back to France or other European countries.

      Speaking from Brook House, one man who is refusing food told the Guardian: “I am a dead person in detention.”

      Nobody who has been arrested and detained in the last few days has been given a ticket for a new removal flight, but the large number of arrests suggest more removals are likely soon. The Home Office is not supposed to detain people unless there is an imminent prospect of removing them.

      One man from Yemen said he had tried to claim asylum in Spain and had been told he would have to wait more than a year sleeping in the streets before his claim could be processed, so he decided to try to reach the UK.

      “My journey was terrible. I crossed many countries – Mauritania, Mali, where traffickers wanted to sell me as a slave, Algeria, Morocco. I crossed the desert. I spent 12 hours in the sea when I crossed the Channel in a small boat in March. I thought I would freeze to death but I was rescued by the Border Force. I’m sending my voice to the public. This is the last opportunity to tell people what has happened to us on our journey and what is happening to us now in detention.”

      Another man from Yemen who said he was on hunger strike in Brook House said he had been abused by smugglers who agreed to help him cross the Channel to the UK. “The smugglers have guns and sometimes they shoot people. The smuggler who was taking us across the Channel pointed a gun at us and said if we made any noise he would shoot us,” he said.

      The Home Office and the French embassy have been approached for comment.

      https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2020/aug/16/priti-patel-migrants-crossing-channel-uk-they-believe-france-racist
      #police #violences_policières

    • UK tested Channel ‘blockade’ to deter migrants, leak reveals

      Exclusive: official document shows tactic based on Australian ‘turn back the boats’ policy has been trialled.

      Trials have taken place to test a blockade in the Channel similar to Australia’s controversial “turn back the boats” tactic, according to official documents seen by the Guardian.

      The documents, produced in mid-September and marked “official” and “sensitive”, summarise advice from officials who were asked by Downing Street to consider “possible options for negotiating an offshore asylum processing facility similar to the Australian model in Papua New Guinea and Nauru”.

      In August it was reported that the home secretary, Priti Patel, was planning to approach French officials for cooperation in using Royal Navy and Border Force boats to block the path of refugees and migrants attempting to reach the UK in small boats.

      The document reveals this approach has been trialled. It reads: “Trials are currently under way to test a ‘blockade’ tactic in the Channel on the median line between French and UK waters, akin to the Australian ‘turn back’ tactic, whereby migrant boats would be physically prevented (most likely by one or more UK RHIBs [rigid hull inflatable boats] from entering UK waters.”

      The Australian policy was developed by the country’s former prime minister Tony Abbott, who was recently appointed as a UK government trade adviser. Operation Sovereign Borders involves turning back boats to the country of embarkation before they reach Australian waters.

      The Australian government considers the policy to be successful but it has been met with severe criticism from human rights groups. The Home Office has been approached for comment.

      The documents have been revealed by the Guardian at a time of increased tension over the UK’s asylum policy. Seven thousand migrants have arrived in the UK in small boats across the Channel so far this year, according to PA Media analysis – more than three times the number of arrivals by this route in the whole of 2019.

      The UK government has also launched a consultation with the maritime industry to explore constructing floating walls in the Channel to block asylum seekers from crossing the narrow strait from France, the Financial Times reported.

      An email from the trade body Maritime UK, obtained by the newspaper, reveals that the idea of floating barriers is being seriously pursued by Home Office officials. Maritime UK told the Guardian it had informed the Home Office that it did not think the proposal was “legally possible”.

      A Maritime UK spokesperson said: “As the umbrella organisation for UK maritime, we are a conduit between industry and government and are often asked by government for advice or input on policy matters. The Home Office engaged us to pass on a question around options to inhibit passage to UK territorial waters, which we gave to our members. The clear view, which we shared with the Home Office, was that as a matter of international convention, that this is not legally possible.”

      Downing Street said it would not comment on each of the leaked measures but said the government would soon bring forward “a package of measures” to address illegal migration once the UK has left the EU.

      The prime minister’s spokesman said: “We are developing plans around illegal migration and asylum to ensure that we’re able to provide protection to those who need it, while preventing abuse of the system and the criminality associated with it.

      “That includes looking at what a whole host of other countries do. But the work is ongoing. There’s an awful lot of speculation around today and I don’t plan on adding anything beyond that.”

      Downing Street said it did not recognise some of the more outlandish reporting – including the possibility of a wave machine in the Channel to push back migrants in small boats. “These things won’t be happening,” the spokesman said.

      A Home Office spokesperson said: “As the public will fully understand, we do not comment on operational matters because to do so could provide an advantage to the exploitative and ruthless criminals who facilitate these dangerous crossing, as they look for new ways to beat the system.

      “We are driving innovative tactics to deploy in every aspect of this operation, underlining the Government’s commitment to ending the viability of using small boats to illegally enter the UK.”

      https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2020/oct/01/uk-tested-channel-blockade-to-deter-migrants-leak-reveals

    • UK and France sign deal to make Channel migrant crossings ’unviable’

      Both countries agree to double police patrols on route already used by more than 8,000 people this year

      Britain and France have signed a new agreement aimed at curbing the number of migrants crossing the Channel in small boats.

      The home secretary, Priti Patel, and her French counterpart, Gérald Darmanin, said they wanted to make the route used by more than 8,000 people this year unviable.

      They agreed to double the number of French police patrolling a 150km stretch of coastline targeted by people-smuggling networks.

      However, the Home Office did not say how many more officers would be deployed.

      The announcement was criticised by a charity as an “extraordinary mark of failure” akin to “rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic”.

      Meanwhile, Amnesty International UK said it was “profoundly disappointing”.

      Patel and Darmanin also agreed an enhanced package of surveillance technology, with drones, radar equipment, cameras and optronic binoculars.

      It is hoped the equipment will help the French deploy officers to the right places to detect migrants and stop them before they start their journey.

      The agreement also includes steps to support migrants into accommodation in France and measures to increase border security at ports in the north and west of the country.

      It builds on measures previously agreed which the Home Office said had seen the proportion of crossings intercepted and stopped since rising from 41% last year to 60% in recent weeks.

      Patel said the new agreement with France will “make a difference” to the numbers.

      Speaking inside the Foreign Office following talks with her French counterpart, she said: “We know that the French authorities have stopped over 5,000 migrants from crossing into the United Kingdom, we’ve had hundreds of arrests and that’s because of the joint intelligence and communications that we share between both our authorities.

      “This new package today that I have just signed with my French counterpart, the French interior minister, effectively doubles the number of police on the French beaches, it invests in more technologies and surveillance – more radar technology that support the law enforcement effort – and on top of that we are now sharing in terms of toughening up our border security.”

      She said the number of migrants making the crossing had grown exponentially, in part due to good weather this year, and blamed trafficking gangs for “facilitating” dangerous journeys.

      “We should not lose sight of the fact that illegal migration exists for one fundamental reason: that is because there are criminal gangs – people traffickers – facilitating this trade,” Patel said.

      She added that the cost charged by traffickers has gone down so “people are putting their lives at risk”.

      Despite deteriorating weather conditions, the UK’s Border Force has continued to deal with migrants making the dangerous trip from northern France.

      The number crossing aboard small boats has rocketed this year, with more than 8,000 reaching the UK – compared with 1,835 in 2019, according to data analysed by the PA news agency.

      This is despite the home secretary’s vow last year to make such journeys an “infrequent phenomenon”.

      A recent report chronicled nearly 300 border-related deaths in and around the English Channel since 1999.

      Written by Mael Galisson, from Gisti, a legal service for asylum seekers in France, it described the evolution of border security in and around the Dover Strait as a “history of death”.

      It claimed responses to the migrant crisis have become increasingly militarised, forcing people to resort to more dangerous routes.

      Bella Sankey, director of humanitarian charity Detention Action, said: “It is an extraordinary mark of failure that the home secretary is announcing with such fanfare that she is rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic.

      “No amount of massaging the numbers masks her refusal to take the sensible step of creating a safe and legal route to the UK from northern France, thereby preventing crossings and child deaths.

      “Instead she throws taxpayers’ money away on more of the same measures that stand no chance of having a significant impact on this dangerous state of affairs.”

      The shadow home secretary, Nick Thomas-Symonds, argued that the Conservatives had “regularly announced progress and not delivered”.

      He said: “A deal with the French authorities alone is not enough. The Conservatives continue to fail on establishing safe routes and have abolished DfID [the Department for International Development], the department that has addressed the reasons people flee their homes in the first place.”

      The deal was also criticised by human rights group Amnesty International UK. Steve Valdez-Symonds, its refugee and migrant rights programme director, said: “It is profoundly disappointing that yet again these two governments have ignored the needs and rights of people who ought to be at the heart of their response.

      “Women, men and children make dangerous journeys across the Channel because there are no safe options provided for them – to either reunite with family in this country, or access an effective asylum system, to which they are entitled.

      “The UK government must share responsibility for providing sanctuary with its nearest neighbour.

      “This continued focus on simply shutting down routes to the UK is blinkered and reckless – it does nothing but increase the risks that people, who have already endured incredible hardship, are compelled to take.”

      Clare Moseley, founder of Care4Calais, said: “This package of surveillance, drones and radar sounds like the government is preparing for a military enemy.

      “These are ordinary people – from engineers to farmers and their families – they are not criminals and they do not want to make this terrifying journey.”

      https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2020/nov/28/uk-and-france-sign-deal-to-make-channel-migrant-crossings-unviable

      #accord

    • #Déclaration_conjointe de la France et du Royaume-Uni sur les prochaines étapes de la #coopération_bilatérale en matière de lutte contre l’#immigration_clandestine

      29 novembre 2020

      Le ministre français de l’intérieur, M. Gérald Darmanin, et la ministre britannique de l’intérieur, Mme Priti Patel, se sont entretenus hier pour évoquer la coopération entre le Royaume-Uni et la France dans la lutte contre l’immigration clandestine à notre frontière commune.

      Ils ont notamment abordé la nécessité d’empêcher les traversées maritimes illégales et de prévenir les troubles à l’ordre public qu’elles génèrent des deux côtés de la Manche.
      Les ministres ont souligné que le nombre élevé de passages illégaux observé cette année n’était pas acceptable et qu’il fallait y remédier avec détermination. Ces traversées à bord d’embarcations de fortune ont donné lieu à des accidents au cours des derniers mois. Elles représentent pour les femmes, hommes et enfants à bord de ces bateaux un danger mortel, qui reste un sujet de préoccupation pour les deux gouvernements. L’implication de réseaux criminels sans scrupules, qui exploitent la vulnérabilité des migrants, est l’une des causes de ce phénomène. Les autorités des deux pays continueront à s’y attaquer avec une détermination sans faille.

      Pour toutes ces raisons, les deux ministres partagent un engagement résolu à coopérer pour mettre fin au phénomène dit des « small boats », et annoncent à cette fin la mise en œuvre de nouvelles mesures conjointes qui doivent permettre de prévenir les départs et d’empêcher la formation de camps illégaux dans le Calaisis.

      Les ministres sont convenus que le travail des forces de l’ordre pour prévenir et arrêter ces passages n’a jamais été aussi efficace, le taux de réussite des interventions passant de 41 % en 2019 à plus de 60 % ces dernières semaines. Malgré ces efforts importants, le nombre de tentatives de traversées reste toutefois encore trop élevé.

      Les ministres ont reconnu et salué les récents efforts déployés pour lutter contre ce phénomène : une présence policière accrue sur la côte entre Boulogne et Dunkerque ; une augmentation du nombre de patrouilles terrestres ; une meilleure utilisation des équipements de détection ; un renforcement de la lutte contre les réseaux criminels de contrebande, permis notamment par la mise en place d’une unité de renseignement opérationnel (URO) dédiée à la lutte contre le trafic de migrants. Cette structure a commencé à donner des résultats concrets : depuis son ouverture en juillet, l’URO a permis de procéder à environ 140 arrestations et d’empêcher quelque 1 100 passages.

      Les deux ministres sont convenus de l’importance de continuer à travailler en étroite collaboration à tous les niveaux, sur la base d’objectifs communs et d’indicateurs clairs, permettant de mesurer les progrès accomplis et d’évaluer les résultats obtenus. A cet effet, le Royaume-Uni et la France se sont accordés sur la mise en place d’un nouveau plan opérationnel conjoint visant à optimiser le déploiement des ressources humaines et des équipements dédiés à la prévention de ces traversées maritimes illégales.

      Ce plan sera effectif dans les prochains jours et comprend :

      une augmentation significative des déploiements de forces de l’ordre pour enquêter, dissuader et prévenir les traversées irrégulières ;
      le déploiement d’équipements de technologies de surveillance de haute définition pour détecter et empêcher les tentatives de franchissement avant qu’elles ne se produisent ;
      des mesures visant à aider les migrants à trouver un hébergement approprié afin de les soustraire à l’emprise des trafiquants ;
      des mesures visant à renforcer la sécurité aux frontières afin de réduire les possibilités de passage irrégulier, y compris par le biais du trafic de marchandises.

      Le Royaume-Uni s’est engagé à faire un investissement financier supplémentaire de 31,4 millions d’euros pour soutenir les efforts importants de la France contre les traversées irrégulières dans ces domaines.

      Au cours des six prochains mois, les résultats seront examinés afin d’évaluer l’efficacité et l’impact de ces mesures supplémentaires. Ces engagements reflètent la conviction des ministres de la nécessité pour le Royaume-Uni et la France de travailler en partenariat étroit à tous les niveaux pour faire face à cette menace commune, briser le modèle économique des passeurs, sauver des vies et maintenir l’ordre public. Les ministres se félicitent de la poursuite du dialogue sur un large éventail de sujets afin de parvenir à une réduction de la pression migratoire à la frontière commune, à court et à long terme.

      https://www.interieur.gouv.fr/Actualites/L-actu-du-Ministere/Declaration-conjointe-de-la-France-et-du-Royaume-Uni-sur-les-prochain

  • European court decision radically changes rules on how internet users’ data is stored
    https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/news/european-court-justice-privacy-shield-us-data-storage-brexit-a9622546

    The move protects the data of EU citizens, but it is unclear how it will affect the UK after Brexit People’s personal Facebook data, and the data kept by thousands of other companies on them, will not be able to be transferred from Europe to America because the US government could snoop on it. The European Court of Justice ruled the “Privacy Shield” – an agreement between the EU and the US which let companies transfer data between the regions – is invalid. The ruling means that Europeans’ (...)

    #Google #TikTok #Huawei #Facebook #données #BigData #PrivacyShield #[fr]Règlement_Général_sur_la_Protection_des_Données_(RGPD)[en]General_Data_Protection_Regulation_(GDPR)[nl]General_Data_Protection_Regulation_(GDPR)

    ##[fr]Règlement_Général_sur_la_Protection_des_Données__RGPD_[en]General_Data_Protection_Regulation__GDPR_[nl]General_Data_Protection_Regulation__GDPR_

  • Jacob Rees-Mogg suggests ’the weather’ is to blame for UK’s sky-high coronavirus death toll https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/coronavirus-uk-jacob-rees-mogg-death-toll-weather-a9585616.html

    Jacob Rees-Mogg has suggested “the weather” is to blame for the UK’s sky-high death toll from coronavirus, in the latest extraordinary explanation given.

    The Commons leader also pointed to “the practices of individual cultures and societies” – although he did not expand on the thesis.

    The reasoning comes after a different government minister drew criticism for claiming the UK was particularly vulnerable as “a global travel hub”.

    Most experts have pointed to Boris Johnson’s reluctance to lock down society until late March – after an explosion of Covid-19 infections – as the key reason for more than 50,000 deaths.

    But, facing questions about that “shocking” record in the Commons, Mr Rees-Mogg said: “A wide range of factors have affected death rates in different countries.

    “Even things as simple as the weather may have influenced how the virus has spread, and so may the practices of individual cultures and societies.

    “I think, therefore, that these headline comparisons are not necessarily enormously illuminative.”

  • Alien Nation: Why public support for migrants in the UK is about to disappear
    #Covid-19#migrant#migration#RoyaumeUni#xenophobie

    https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/coronavirus-immigration-hostile-environment-windrush-mujinga-alien-na

    Tens of millions of Britons on their doorsteps applauding an organisation propped up by foreign workers each week. A prime minister thanking two immigrants whose work as nurses saved his life. It would perhaps have seemed unthinkable from a Conservative government less than 10 years on from vans with “go home” emblazoned on the side, and indeed from the man who led a Brexit campaign warning of mass immigration from Turkey.