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World News March 21, 2024

Relocating UK asylum seekers from hotels will not save money, watchdog says

The British government’s plan to decrease the use of hotels for housing asylum seekers by relocating them to sites like military bases has been criticized by parliament’s spending watchdog. The move is expected to result in higher costs for taxpayers, contrary to official claims. With a growing backlog of over 100,000 asylum seekers, ministers are struggling to manage housing expenses. The government’s strategy, including controversial attempts to deter new arrivals by deporting some migrants to Rwanda, faces legal challenges. The increasing number of migrants arriving in southeast England has led to a surge in hotel usage, costing £4.7 billion, with £3.1 billion spent on hotels alone. Despite efforts to transition to alternative sites, such as military bases, the National Audit Office found that costs have not been reduced, with estimates suggesting these sites will cost £46 million more than hotels. The government cites benefits such as minimizing the impact on local communities, while the opposition Labour Party criticizes the report as “staggering.”

Source – CGTN

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