Theresa May faces continued pressure to reopen the UK scheme to accept lone child refugees as the Labour peer Alf Dubs delivers a petition condemning its sudden closure to Downing Street.
About 50,000 people have signed the petition amid widespread anger and dismay at a decision to cap the number of children being brought to Britain at 350. It was widely assumed that up to 3,000 children might be helped when the Dubs amendment to the immigration act was passed.
Religious leaders are expected to join Lord Dubs in his petition presentation on Saturday after the archbishop of Canterbury warned that halting the initiative would see more children being trafficked, exploited and killed.
Dubs said on Friday that the home secretary, Amber Rudd, was wrong to say local authorities did not have the space to take in more children.
“All the government needs to do is put out a new appeal to local authorities asking who can take more children,” he said. “It doesn’t need a whole new consultation. We are going to keep the pressure up about this. I believe that the government decision to limit the number of children allowed in to 350 flies in the face of both parliamentary opinion and public opinion.”
A number of Tory MPs have also promised to fight the decision. On Saturday, a Conservative peer who was granted asylum in the UK after fleeing the Bosnian war urged the prime minister to live up to Britain’s history as a haven for refugees.
Arminka Helić, a former special…