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UK THREATENS GAMBIA WITH VISA SANCTIONS

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By Alagie Manneh

The UK Home Secretary, Priti Patel, has vowed to impose visa sanctions on The Gambia and some other countries for refusing to take back what she called ‘criminals and asylum seekers from the UK.

According to her, the measures are being considered due to a lack of ‘cooperation’ on deportations by those countries who are ‘abusing our hospitality.

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The Home Secretary specifically pointed out The Gambia, warning that the country will be first for the stricter measures as they “ignored” calls for cooperation.

“[They] only took four criminals [back last year],” Ms. Patel said.

Speaking to The Sun last Sunday, she added: “Some countries do not cooperate on returns and so we will impose visa penalties on countries who refuse to take criminals back. We rightly take back British citizens who commit crimes abroad and other countries do the same.”

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Official figures show that at the end of June there were 10,882 foreign national offenders who had been released from jail but not deported.

All are subject to deportation because they were handed prison sentences of at least 12 months, The Sun reports.

Under new reforms in the Nationality and Borders Bill, Ms. Pratel will be able to suspend visas entirely, impose a £190 surcharge on applications to come to the UK, or increase visa processing times – and aims to encourage other countries to cooperate with the UK government.

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