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Volume 488: debated on Wednesday 25 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what discussions her Department has had with the Department for International Development on establishing training programmes in developing countries to enable asylum claimants from those countries to be returned safely. (257213)

Regular discussions, including about training programmes, take place as part of a programme of work funded by the Returns and Reintegration Fund (which is a cross-government fund supported by the Department for International Development, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), the UK Border Agency, and with expertise from the Ministry of Justice. It is administered by the FCO.)

The Fund aims to increase the numbers of failed asylum seekers returned to overseas countries and provide reintegration assistance. One of the Fund’s objectives is to ensure that those who return voluntarily have the best possible chance of making their return a successful one.

The Assisted Voluntary Return programme, which is supported by the Fund, provides in-country reintegration assistance including training programmes for returnees.