14:59 GMT05 December 2020
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    Human Rights Watch is deeply concerned at the current climate of xenophobia in the United Kingdom and increase in hate crimes since the Brexit vote, according to official group's statement.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The UK’s vote to exit the European Union has created a "climate of hostility" in Britain and is threatening to weaken human rights protections, an influential rights watchdog warned Monday.

    "Human Rights Watch [HRW] is deeply concerned at the current climate of xenophobia in the United Kingdom and increase in hate crimes since the Brexit vote," the group told the British parliament warning about "the risks of a further deterioration of human rights protections as the UK moves towards exiting the EU."

    In a letter to the British legislature’s Joint Committee on Human Rights, HRW sought to draw lawmakers’ attention to the "cumulative effect" that the government’s post-vote proposals had on EU nationals living and working in the United Kingdom.

    Reports that the government was mulling having UK firms register their foreign workers risked sending a message to the UK population that "the referendum result was a vote to rid the country of foreigners," the watchdog warned.

    The immediate result of the June 23 referendum was a hike in hate crimes, including deadly attacks on Polish nationals, according to police. HRW cited some non-UK nationals reporting being told by people on the street they had to leave because that was what the vote "meant."

    The rights advocacy group also warned that the UK’s stated intention replace the Human Rights Act with a British bill of rights and give the local court the power of final interpretation over violations, risked scrapping EU’s key safeguards after Britain quits.


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    xenophobia, Brexit, Human Rights Watch, United Kingdom
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