A TOP refugee council is “horrified” by the Home Secretary calling for protection for asylum seekers to be dismantled during an extreme speech to a US think tank.

Suella Braverman said multiculturalism has “failed” in Europe and threatens social cohesion in the nation-state during an address in Washington DC.

Speaking at the American Enterprise Institute on Tuesday, the Tory Cabinet Secretary questioned the relevance of the 1951 United Nations Refugee Convention.

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The Refugee Convention not only defines the term “refugee” but outlines the rights of those seeking asylum and sets international standards of treatment for their protection.

Braverman claimed that a “fear of being branded a racist or illiberal” has prevented reform of the global asylum system.

The Scottish Refugee Council condemned Braverman’s comments while Amnesty International criticised her “inflammatory” speech.

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“Any attempt to reform the refugee convention will see you smeared as anti-refugee,” Braverman (below) said in her speech.

“Similar epithets are hurled at anyone who suggests reform of the ECHR (European Convention on Human Rights) or its court in Strasbourg.

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“I reject that notion that a country cannot be expected to respect human rights if it is not signed up to an international human rights organisation.

“Unilateral or bilateral solutions and policies of deterrence can and do work.”

Braverman also said that while “international co-operation is essential” in creating an “asylum framework fit for the modern age”, nations "cannot simply sit on their hands while a reform process plays out”.

She went on: "It is right that they act in their national interest."

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The Home Secretary was branded “not fit for office” by the SNP in a scathing assessment of her speech, with refugee charities also condemning her comments.

A Scottish Refugee Council spokesperson said: “Standing up for our shared humanity is more important than ever. We are horrified that the UK Government is suggesting that these historic protections are dismantled, and our humanitarian obligations denied.

“Seeking asylum is a human right and one that must be upheld, no matter how a person fled their country or their circumstances. It is the broken asylum system in the UK that needs reform, not the UN Refugee Convention.”

Meanwhile, Sacha Deshmukh, Amnesty International UK’s chief executive, said that the Refugee Convention is a “ cornerstone of the international legal system”.

The National: A woman holds a sleeping child, at a border crossing, as refugees flee Ukraine, in Medyka, Poland, Thursday, March 3, 2022. The U.N. refugee agency said Thursday at least 1 million people have fled Ukraine since Russia's invasion a week ago, an

“We need to call out this assault on the convention for what it is: a display of cynicism and xenophobia,” he added.

“The Refugee Convention is just as relevant today as it was when it was created, and verbal assaults from the Home Secretary don’t alter the harsh realities that cause people from countries such as Sudan, Afghanistan and Iran to flee from conflict and persecution.

“What urgently needs to be addressed on the world stage is the glaring inequality of countries sharing responsibility for refugees a matter in which the UK is severely lagging.

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“Instead of making inflammatory speeches decrying the rights of people fleeing persecution and tyranny, Suella Braverman should focus on creating a functioning UK asylum system that tackles the massive backlog her policies have created, so as to be able to meet the limited refugee responsibilities that fall to the UK.”

During her address in the US, the Home Secretary also spoke of the UK’s resources being stretched thin due to illegal migration due to “high birth rates among foreign-born mothers”.

She also highlighted “threats to public safety”, noting “heightened levels of criminality connected to some small boat arrivals”.