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UK news in brief

20 April 2018


Displaced children from Eastern Ghouta in Damascus, study in a displacement centre in Herjalleh, Damascus, a fortnight ago

Displaced children from Eastern Ghouta in Damascus, study in a displacement centre in Herjalleh, Damascus, a fortnight ago

UN calls for fresh resolve to help displaced people

TWENTY years after the United Nations first laid out the rights of internally displaced persons (IDPs), millions are still languishing in “protracted crises” without the funding to meet their basic humanitarian needs, William Lacy Swing, the head of the UN’s International Organisation for Migration, said on Tuesday. The number of IDPs had almost doubled since 1998, to 40 million. “Everyone can and must do more,” Mr Swing said. “The daily tragedy of internal displacement continues for millions.” Christian Aid has welcomed the fresh UN campaign.

Bishops demand action over Yarl’s Wood detainees

THE Bishop of Croydon, the Rt Revd Jonathan Clark, and the Bishop of Lichfield, Dr Michael Ipgrave, have supported calls to release a Christian mother and daughter on hunger strike at Yarl’s Wood immigration detention centre. Florence Kgari and her daughter Opelo begun a hunger strike earlier this year in an effort to prevent their deportation. They have been supported by their church pastor among others (News, 9 March). The two Bishops have written to The Guardian arguing that allowing the pair to remain in Britain would be a “step towards a more humane immigration system based on our shared Christian values of fairness and decency”.

Churches in Guernsey speak out against assisted suicide

FIFTY-THREE church leaders from Church of England, Roman Catholic, and Methodist parishes across Guernsey have signed an open letter urging the island’s authorities not to legalise assisted suicide. The letter argues that the proposal, set to be debated next month in Guernsey’s parliament, would be a “threat” to those with disabilities, and the vulnerable, and would irrevocably change the island. “As a community we need to celebrate and support all of life and not actively seek to terminate life.”

Correction: Opposition to the proposed mosque on the Isle of Lewis is being led by ministers from the Free Church of Scotland (Continuing), not the Free Church of Scotland as we reported last week (News, 13 April).

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