In a surprising turn of events, net migration to the United Kingdom has soared to a new record high of 672,000, marking a significant increase from the previous record of 602,000 just four months ago, according to the latest figures released by the Office for National Statistics on Thursday. This revelation intensifies pressure on Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, who had pledged to reduce migration to a third of the current level during the Conservatives' election campaign four years ago.
The statistics, covering the 12 months leading up to June 2023, reveal a stark contrast to the Conservative Party's promise to slash overall migration numbers, which were approximately 226,000 people annually in 2019. Instead, the figures indicate a threefold increase, prompting concerns among Tory backbenchers and citizens alike.
This surge in migration comes at a challenging time for Prime Minister Sunak, who is already grappling with a separate migration issue concerning the influx of undocumented migrants crossing the English Channel. Last week, the UK Supreme Court ruled Sunak's plan to deport asylum seekers to Rwanda as illegal, adding to the government's migration-related woes.
Faced with mounting criticism and discontent within his own party, Sunak is reportedly considering unveiling new proposals on migration next week. The Prime Minister's commitment to reducing migration has become a focal point of discontent among Conservative members, with the failure to fulfill this key manifesto promise causing frustration.
A Downing Street official, speaking anonymously to the London Playbook newsletter, acknowledged the government's determination to address the migration issue. "We want to get migration down. We have a very clear story to tell on that," the official stated, hinting at the upcoming announcement.
As the government faces challenges on multiple fronts, including legal battles and internal dissent, the coming weeks will prove crucial in determining whether Prime Minister Sunak can navigate the turbulent waters of migration policy and regain the support of both his party and the public. With Tory backbenchers expressing fury over the failures, Sunak's ability to deliver on his promises will be closely scrutinized in the wake of these startling migration figures.
Image Credit: The Guardian
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