London: Police, Immigration Begin Crackdown On Immigrants

British Home Secretary
British Home Secretary

UK  Police and immigration officials have launched a crackdown on beggars and Eastern Europeans, who sleep on the streets in London. The operation , which began Friday morning, is aimed at combating the ‘offensive consequences’ caused by beggars harassing shopkeepers, local residents and tourists in hotspots such as Marble Arch. One person will be removed from the UK by the Borrder Agency as a result of the raids while another will voluntarily return to Romania. Dozens of others were issued with cease and desist notices. It comes a day after it was revealed the number of foreigners moving to Britain had soared dramatically, leaving the Government’s flagship pledge to slash immigration in tatters. Prime Minister David Cameron’s long-standing promise to get tough by reducing net migration to ‘tens of thousands’ a year suffered a humiliating blow yesterday with news that it rose by 40 per cent. The Office for National Statistics said 243,000 more people moved to the UK last year than departed – an increase of 68,000 newcomers on the previous year. European Union citizens accounted for 44,000 – or two-thirds – of the increase, including a rise in arrivals from Romania and Bulgaria. According to the quarterly statistics, a total of 560,000 immigrants arrived in the UK in the 12 months to March, while an estimated 317,000 people left. The overall number of arrivals from the EU was 214,000 and, for the first time in three years, the number of people migrating to the UK from outside the EU increased by 19,000 to 265,000. More than 80,000 Britons returned to the UK. Although the UK Border Agency has the power to send home any EU nationals not exercising their EU Treaty rights, Westminster City Council bosses say ‘tighter regulations are needed’ and that current powers ‘do not go far enough’. But Immigration and Security Minister James Brokenshire said the operation demonstrated that ‘abuse of free movement will not be tolerated’ and that action would be taken to remove perpetrators from the UK. ‘We work regularly with police, local authorities and other agencies to identify and deal with EU nationals who are not abiding by the rules. The figures released yesterday offered clear evidence of how a new wave of EU immigration has taken advantage of Britain’s fast-recovering economy – which has produced an extra two million private sector jobs since 2010 – while the Eurozone remains mired in chaos. There was an increase in people arriving for work to 228,000 – up from 190,000 – while 177,000 people came here as students. Ministers have no powers to stop the free movement of European workers.

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