Today Programme: Illegal immigrants
On the Today programme on 1 August, Keith Best (Chief Executive of the largely government funded Immigration Advisory Service) challenged Sir Andrew Green’s inclusion of failed asylum seekers among illegal immigrants. He described it as “naughty”.
Migrationwatch used the same definition of illegal immigrants as the Home Office report.
The extract below from a recent Parliamentary Answer by the Minister for Immigration sets out that definition.
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many
(a) illegal immigrants and
(b) failed asylum seekers entered the UK between 1997 and 2004. 
The information is as follows.
(a) ………..Although it is impossible to determine accurately how many people are in the UK illegally the Home Office published a report, on 30 June 2005, which included an estimate of the size of the illegal migrant population in the UK in 2001. It should be noted that the report included an estimate, not an accurate or definitive figure.
Failed asylum seekers who do not comply with instructions to leave the UK, who are not appealing or who have exhausted their rights of appeal (including those who abscond during the process) are included in the definition of 'unauthorised' or 'illegally resident' migrant population used in the report………”
18 Jul 2005 : Column 1475W