Innvandringen til Storbritannia økte med 50 prosent etter at Blair-regjeringens tenketank skrev den omstridte, angivelig hemmelige rapporten om å gjøre landet multikulturelt, hvilket blant annet ville tillate Labour å portrettere Toriene som rasister. Kritikere mener at dette er et klart bevis på at Labour implementerte den kontroversielle politikken.
I en tale i Underhuset i går sa skygge-innenriksminister Chris Grayling at det ville være en «regelrett skam» for ministere å basere innvandringspolitikken på partipolitikk, og spurte immigrasjonsminister Phil Woolas om han kunne redegjøre for motivasjonen bak den svært raske og store økningen i innvandring under Labour-regjeringen.
Woolas lot imidlertid ikke til å vite hvilken rapport Grayling refererte til, til tross for sakens brede dekning i britiske medier:
Incredibly, Mr Woolas did not appear to know which report Mr Grayling was referring to – despite the widespread coverage it received over the weekend.
Yesterday, the Daily Mail told how ministers were facing calls for an inquiry into claims by former Labour adviser Andrew Neather that the Government opened up Britain’s borders in part to try to humiliate Right-wing opponents of immigration.
His allegations referred to a 2001 report from the Performance and Innovation Unit, a think-tank based in the Cabinet Office, which made the case for mass immigration.
Earlier drafts are said to have included the statement of ‘a driving political purpose: that mass immigration was the way that the Government was going to make the UK truly multicultural’.
Nå viser analyser av offisielle statistikker at antallet ankomne utlendinger økte markant fra samme dato som den endelige rapporten ble publisert.
Whitehall statistics show that in the year of the document’s publication, 370,000 non-British nationals arrived. That rose to 416,000 the following year and, by 2006, had reached 510,000.
In 2007, it fell back slightly to 502,000 – but this was still an increase of 30 per cent on 2001.
For net foreign immigration – the number of non-British citizens arriving, versus the number leaving – the figures are more dramatic.
In 2001, it stood at 221,000 – but by 2007 it had reached 333,000 – up by 50 per cent. This is the size of the increase in the foreign-born population of the UK.
Sir Andrew Green, chairman of the Migrationwatch think-tank, said: ‘Now it has been revealed that mass immigration under this government was a deliberate policy concealed from the public, and especially from the white working class whose lives and neighbourhoods have been most affected.
Now immigration will add another seven million to our population over the next 25 years unless really serious measures are taken to cut immigration by at least 75 per cent.’
Opponents claim Labour’s bungling of immigration policy has contributed to the growth of the BNP.
Mr Neather, who worked for Tony Blair and Jack Straw, said Labour’s relaxation of immigration controls was a attempt to engineer a ‘truly multicultural’ country and plug gaps in the jobs market. He claimed the 2001 policy paper inspired the ‘major shift’ in immigration policy.
Justice Secretary Jack Straw, who was then Home Secretary, has dismissed Mr Neather’s claims as ‘ complete rubbish’.