David Cameron was last Sunday (29) accused of breaking his promise to curb immigration, as leading Conservative mps stepped up hostilities in the party over a battle to win next month’s referendum on remaining in the EU.
in an open letter to the prime minister, his one-time allies justice minister michael Gove and former London mayor Boris Johnson said “a failure” to curb migration was “corrosive of public trust in politics”.
Cameron is leading a campaign to persuade voters to keep Britain in the european Union in the June 23 referendum. The remain side said the attempt to move the debate onto immigration showed that Leave campaigners had lost the argument on the economy.
in the letter circulated by the “vote Leave” campaign, Gove, Johnson and Labour’s Gisela Stuart said voters had been promised that annual net immigration could be cut to the tens of thousands.
“This promise is plainly not achievable as long as the UK is a member of the EU and the failure to keep it is corrosive of public trust in politics,” they wrote.
They pointed to official statistics issued last week showing net migration to Britain reached 333,000 in 2015, the second-highest level for a year since records began in 1975. of those, a net 184,000 came from the EU, which upholds the principle of free movement.
immigration is one of the key battlegrounds in what is becoming an increasingly bitter fight over EU membership.
Those campaigning to stay in the EU challenged Leave campaigners to describe what Britain would look like if the country left.
employment minister Priti Patel wrote an article last week accusing the remain campaign of being led by people whose wealth protected them from the impact of immigration.