Lee Anderson spoke for Britain telling migrants to ‘f*** off’, says minister

Minister backs Lee Anderson’s ‘righteous indignation’ over illegal migrants

Justice Secretary Alex Chalk has said that outspoken Tory MP Lee Anderson’s “righteous indigantion” about illegal migrants in the UK was “speaking for the British people”.

The senior minister stepped in after a row over camments made by Mr Anderson, the Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party, to Express.co.uk.

The Ashfield MP said: “If they don’t like barges then they should f*** off back to France.”

His intervention came after leftwing activist charity Care4Calais, which has links to the Labour Party, had intervened to prevent illegal migrants being transferred to the new holding barge Bibby Stockholm yesterday.

But the comments provoked a storm of outrage from leftwingers including former shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott.

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In an interview this morning on LBC, Mr Chalk was challenged by presenter Nick Ferrari, a columnist for the Sunday Express, over the words chosen by the Conservative Deputy Chairman.

But Mr Chalk defended the “robust” approach of his colleague.

The Justice Secretary said: “Lee Anderson expresses the righteous indignation of the British people.

“Yes, he does it in salty terms, that’s his style.

“But his indignation is well placed.”

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He went on: “People are coming from a safe country. France is a signatory to the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).

“People should claim asylum in the first country, it is not just like an open shopping list of where you want to go.

“So he (Anderson) expresses himself in his characteristically robust terms but there is a lot of sense in my respectful view of what he said.”

Mr Anderson was also defended by his fellow red wall MP Brendan Clarke-Smith who is no stranger to fury directed by leftwingers on Twitter.

The Bassetlaw MP said: โ€œWhilst Labour MPs are busy signing letters demanding we drag dangerous criminals off planes because of their human rights, people like Lee are speaking up for the rest of the country who are fed up seeing our immigration system being cheated.

“If they are upset again then it shows he must be doing something right.โ€

Mr Chalk also said that the barge is supposed to put people off from coming to the UK illegally.

Speaking to Times Radio he did not deny the allegations from Care4Calais and others on the left that the accommodation is much more basic than hotels.

But Mr Chalk said deterrents are needed to stop the small boats.

By the beginning of July 13,000 illegal migrants had crossed the Channel on small boats in 2023.

Asked about it being a deterrent, Mr Chalk said: “I don’t think that’s something that we should shrink from being clear about.

“Of course we want to be clear about what happens if people come to this country, and that’s the whole purpose of the Illegal Migration Act.

“If you do come here unlawfully, you will be detained and you will be returned either to your home country or to a safe country.”

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