THE Home Office is to keep security at Penally Training Camp under constant review as the first of its proposed 234 asylum seekers start to arrive at the site.

A police presence at the camp has been maintained throughout the week, and this was upped yesterday (Monday) evening following the earlier arrival of a coach carrying a number of the men, who later came to the fence to speak to people outside.

Representatives of the Penally Against Illegal Migrants group were present during the evening, and the previous Saturday, the group and Stand Up to Racism West Wales faced each other outside the camp over a line of police.

The Home Office has come under criticism for its alleged lack of local engagement over the use of the camp and this has "created an environment of acute anxiety within the community and for those seeking asylum," said Penally's county councillor, Jon Preston.

He told the Western Telegraph:

To treat people with such a total lack of empathy is unacceptable and the Home Office must take immediate steps to scrutinise its own actions in this matter.

“It is not a sustainable solution to meet legal humanitarian obligations at the detriment of a small seaside community which does not have the infrastructure to support such vulnerable people.”

After angry scenes outside the camp going into the early hours of last Tuesday, September 22, police arrested a 50-year-old man. He was released on bail on Tuesday on the condition he does not enter Pembrokeshire.

This led to Welsh First Minister Mark Drakeford condemning ‘hard-right agitators’ coming to Pembrokeshire to fulfil ‘their own shocking agenda’.

A spokesman for the Home Office said today (Tuesday): We will not tolerate any attempts to fuel resentment towards asylum seekers and we will take all the necessary steps to protect people in our care. We continually review the security at asylum accommodation sites with providers, who work closely with local police to ensure action is taken if someone tries to access a site.”

The spokesman added:” The Home Office is committed to working collaboratively with communities and stakeholders to ensure that destitute asylum seekers are provided with safe, secure and suitable accommodation while their asylum claims are considered."