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Immigration backlog '500,000'

The backlog of immigration cases at Britain's troubled border service has hit a "staggering" half a million people and at the current rate of progress will take nearly four decades to clear, a group of MPs has warned.

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Immigration Minister backs new government visa service

Immigration Minister Mark Harper has backed the Government's new UK Visas and Immigration Service to clear Britain's backlog of immigration cases.

The UK Border Agency was a troubled organisation for many years, which is why the Home Secretary took the decision to split the agency in March this year.

The new UK Visas and Immigration Service has a clear focus to improve visa performance and customer service, while the Immigration Enforcement Command concentrates on those who break our immigration laws.

Both now report directly to ministers, delivering greater transparency and accountability.

It will take a long time to clear the backlogs we inherited - but through the changes we have made we are in a much stronger position to do so.

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