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Scrap Common Travel Area reform

Comment 1st July 2010

The New Labour Government and the UK Border Agency (UKBA) set about removing our ancient right to travel across the British Isles without a passport. The reforms first surfaced as Clause 48 in the Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Bill 2009. This Clause was comprehensively defeated.

Now the UKBA is trying to get the Isle of Man Tynwald to approve the The Immigration (Isle of Man) (Amendment) Order 2010 which introduces the same measures by the back door.

The Coalition Government should assert it's authority over the UKBA and order them to scrap all these plans to force us to carry passports across the Islands.

Why does this matter?

My idea is importanct because our right to free travel across the British Isles including Eire is an ancient right which government should not interfere with. Forcing British Citizens to go through e-Borders checks to visit Eire, the Isle of Man, Jersey and Guernsey will have constitutional implications and will interfere with the Provisions of the Good Friday agreement.

This is because it will force the people of Ulster to have to carry a passport to leave the Province. As Ulstermen can be British, Irish or both this will inflame tensions.

Common Travel Area reform is comprehensively opposed by all parties involved. The Coalition Government should be aware of this and scrap the proposals so we can keep our travel freedoms.

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