UK Visas and immigration back into the spotlight following London Terrorist attack

UK visas and immigration policy is thrust back into the spotlight following the aftermath of the London terrorist attack, which left five people dead – including police officer, PC Keith Palmer – and more than 40 people injured, messages of condolence poured in from around the world. However, some have used the tragedy as an opportunity to slam UK Visa and immigration policy.

Immigration Minister Peter Dutton used the tragedy in London as a means of justifying his country’s decision to reject 500 refugees of Syrian and Iraqi origin because of ‘security fears’. He said that ‘screening people from nations with known links to terrorism is justified’, implying that UK immigration policy makes light of vetting people from overseas.

Mr Dutton said: “I think the tragic events in London and elsewhere demonstrate the Australian government’s approach was prudent. The government’s cautionary approach will instil confidence in our citizens when it comes to national security.”

Terrorist Attacks in Westminster on 22 March 2017

At approximately 14.40pm, reports surfaced of a lone attacker ploughing a Hyundai i40 into pedestrians on the pavement over Westminster Bridge, killing three people and injuring several others. The car crashed into railings outside the Houses of Parliament.

The attacker, who is yet to be named, was then seen wielding a knife and ran towards Parliament where he was confronted by police. PC Keith Palmer, who was unarmed, bravely attempted to thwart the attacker, but was stabbed and killed. The attacker was then shot dead by armed officers.

Acting Deputy Commissioner and head of counter-terrorism at the Metropolitan Police, Mark Rowley, said that they have a fairly clear idea of who the attacker is. The unnamed man was allegedly inspired by an international Islamist terrorist group, according to Rowley, but he disclosed no further details.

Instead, Mr Rowley paid tribute to PC Palmer, saying: “He was someone who left for work today expecting to return home at the end of his shift, and he had every right to expect that would happen.”