'Start listening!' BBC Question Time audience member blasts Tory MP over refugee policy

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The flagship BBC panel programme returned to TV screens last night with an episode in Kettering, Northamptonshire with Question Time host Fiona Bruce being joined by a star-studded panel of political experts, including Tory MP and Attorney General Suella Braverman. Ms Braverman, who has represented residents in the safe-seat of Fareham in the Commons since 2015, came under fire from one audience member after she claimed the UK had a good track record on welcoming refugees.

The audience member said: “I don’t know where Suella is coming from.

“I completely agree with Wes [Streeting] that the whole system the Conservatives have set up is designed to exclude refugees from coming to the country.

“They’re bringing in legislation to say that if you’ve passed through a safe country you have to go back to that country.

“Everything they do seems designed for us not to take refugees and yet 120,000 people have said ‘yes, we want to open our homes to refugees’.”

She added that the Conservative Party needs to “start listening to what we are saying”, arguing Brits want to take in refugees from other countries outside of Ukraine and voiced concern about the checks refugees needed to pass.

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The Brexit-backing MP responded by saying: “I’m sorry but that is not in line with the security advice we have.

“It is really important that we do carry out these checks before they get here because if they don’t pass the standards then it’s very hard to remove people who are here illegally.”

Ms Braverman added: “God forbid we drop the checks because there’s political pressure and ambitious MPs are making political footballs out of this issue, and someone gets through illegally and then they carry out an attack on British soil, something which is devastating.

“Everyone here would be rightly outraged that we dropped checks and we allowed someone to slip through the net.

“I’m not willing to take that chance on British people’s security.

However, Ms Braverman claimed Mr Streeting did not have “cogent” evidence before “casting aspersions”.

She went on to warn it is unfair to throw around “reckless accusations” and stressed the need to not treat all Russians as a threat.

Ms Braverman and Mr Streeting appeared on Question Time alongside Ukrainian politician Lesia Vasylenko, Reverend Richard Coles and the ex-Daily Telegraph editor Max Hastings.

BBC Question Time will air again next Thursday from Reading in Berkshire.



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