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Suella Braverman lashes out at Elton John, Gary Lineker and the 'virtue-signalling elite'

The Home Secretary lashed out at celebs like Sir Elton John and Gary Lineker, branding them members of a “virtue-signalling elite”.

It came after Sir Elton claimed her immigration policy risked “legitimising hate and violence” after she accused migrants of “gaming” the system to secure refugee status.

BBC football pundit Mr Lineker, also weighed in, tweeting: “She can’t possibly know that they [the migrants] are lying.”

But Ms Braverman hit back in a Sunday newspaper interview.

“What we are seeing here is out-of-touch pampered elites, lecturing us on how we should think about very, very serious issues affecting the majority of British people, such as illegal migration,” she said.

“These people don’t have to wait in a queue to see a GP, they can just go private. They don’t have to worry about trying to afford a car or buy a house.

“The vast majority of British people are directly affected by the unprecedented scale of illegal migration. My job is to think of them first ahead of a virtue-signalling, elitist view from Hollywood Central.”

However, Ms Braverman’s speech to a Washington DC think tank was criticised by former Home Secretary Dame Priti Patel, who accused her of an “attention seeking” attack on multiculturalism.

Dame Priti told Sky News’ Trevor Phillips on Sunday that her claim that multiculturalism had been a “failure” was wrong.

She suggested the Cabinet minister had failed to provide “some perspective and context” around the situation in Britain, saying there had been “wider issues” around community flare-ups in places such as Leicester, which saw unrest between Hindu and Muslim groups last year.”

Dame Priti, 51, who like her successor was born in England to parents of Indian origin who arrived here via Africa, told Trevor Phillips: “I don’t know what the intention was around that – it might just be to get attention, to have the dividing lines in the run-up to a general election. I can understand that.

“But you and I are sitting here today, we are the products of actual integration, multiculturalism, dynamic communities, people who love our country and want to contribute to our country, along with a hell of a lot of other people who have done exactly the same. I think that is something we should be proud of.”

It comes as new analysis of government figures suggest that three-quarters of people who have crossed the Channel on small boats this year would be recognised as refugees if their application had been processed.

The study by the Refugee Council also found that once the Illegal Migration Act is fully enforced, as few as 3.5 per cent of people arriving would be returned to their home countries every year, while thousands of remaining migrants would be left in limbo and could “disappear” into destitution on the margins of society.

The Act, hailed by the Government as key to deterring small boat crossings, became law on July 20.

But there is currently no timeline for the implementation of the legislation’s main elements, including the duty to remove people deemed to have arrived in the UK illegally and block them from making asylum claims.

In a challenge to ministers’ claims that a majority of people crossing the Channel are not in genuine need of protection, the report found a large majority of arrivals would be granted asylum in normal circumstances.

The Refugee Council said its analysis shows the “human and financial costs” of the Illegal Migration Act when it is implemented in full.

Under the Act, if someone has claimed asylum they can only be removed to their country of origin if they are from one of the 27 member states of the European Union or Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland and Albania. Removals of other nationals must be made to a safe third country.

Only 660 of the 19,441 people who crossed the Channel this year and declared their nationality could be transferred to their home country. These arrivals all came from Albania.

Enver Solomon, chief operating officer of the Refugee Council, said the UK should not slam the door in the face of those who have faced atrocities such as torture, sexual coercion, slavery and exploitation.

He added: “Closing down the asylum system will simply result in vast cost, chaos and human misery with tens of thousands of people stuck in permanent limbo, likely to disappear into the margins of our communities, at risk of destitution, exploitation and abuse.”

The Home Office has been approached for comment.



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