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Immigration: Detention

Volume 691: debated on Tuesday 24 April 2007

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What consideration they are giving to implementing arrangements for the judicial oversight of all decisions to detain asylum seekers, as practised in other European Union member states. [HL3336]

We remain firmly of the view that detention for immigration purposes under Article 5(1)(f) of the ECHR does not require judicial oversight. Detainees have access to judicial review and habeas corpus and this satisfies the Article 5(4) requirement that detained persons should be able to bring proceedings before a court to challenge the lawfulness of their detention.

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they will discontinue the detention of vulnerable immigrants, with serious mental and physical conditions, who are determined to have been previously the victims of torture. [HL3308]

Certain persons are normally considered suitable for detention only in exceptional circumstances. Elderly persons, pregnant women, those suffering from serious medical conditions or who are otherwise mentally ill and those where there is independent evidence to show that they have been tortured are included among those who would usually be considered unsuitable for detention.

Detaining officers will always consider on a case-by-case basis whether detention is appropriate in any particular case.