Tim Farron arrives in Lesvos

Tim Farron arrived in Greek island of Lesvos (Lesbos) this morning to speak with refugees arriving from Turkey, fleeing conflict in the Middle East.

We can see here the numbers of dinghys and life jackets abandoned on the beaches. “Something I would barely risk on lake Windermere.”

Tim is due to be on Radio 5 live at 1245 today. Worth listening in.

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  • Eddie Sammon 27th Oct '15 - 5:03pm

    I was sceptical about this trip, but this video that Lib Dems have tweeted of Tim helping people off a rubber boat was good:


    He could have been really needed. Community politics international version.

  • What point is he trying to make?

  • Richard Underhill 28th Oct '15 - 1:47pm

    The first video does not load.
    Tim Farron gave an interview to BBC1 Daily Politics before PMQ today, quoting Save the Children..
    At a fringe meeting at Bournemouth conference the UNHCR said that the government’s promise about unaccompanied children cannot be delivered because most of them were already in Europe. Unfortunately this is ambiguous because the word Europe is used for a whole continent or as an abbreviation for the European Union. If they were in the EU they would, hopefully, be safe. If they were trying to enter the EU from another European country, or, especially from Turkey which is partly in the continent of Europe, perhaps not.
    David Cameron’s answer about advice from other NonGovernmentOrganisations (NGOs) needs to be backed up with detail and sources. Although the PM is willing to write to MPs on some issues he did not offer to write to Tim Farron on this issue. An implication would be that the PM has made up his mind on the issue of jurisdiction and was not swayed on the issue of compassion. TV coverage of those trying to enter the EU is worrying in the specific sense that migrants are using children to which they are not genuinely related to help with queue-jumping on access to busses and trains. There must therefore be doubt about whether the PMs answer today is satisfactory.

  • Dave G Fawcett 28th Oct '15 - 3:18pm

    David. I don’t think he was trying to make a point. he went to Lesbos to see for himself the scale of the problem. When the refugee boat turned up I suspect he simply couldn’t stand by and do nothing. Unlike many senior politicians he wasn’t afraid to wade in and give a hand.

  • Shaun Cunningham 28th Oct '15 - 5:29pm

    Who thought this up? When will this party realise Tim standing on a foreign beach will not change the public perceptions of this party, in fact I would argue it makes it worst. Tim’s time would be better served here outlining clearly the party’s policy on welfare and how the party is going to balance personal responsibilities against walfare reforms. There needs to be welfare reforms. For goodness sake let us get show on the road.

  • David Evans 28th Oct '15 - 5:54pm

    Paul, You are probably right, but being in Greece the day after the Tax Credits motion was voted on meant he was not available for the media at the time. That opportunity has now passed.

  • Ok I’m going to be honest here and say that I’m not a fan of this kind of thing; quite frankly it makes me cringe. There is nothing wrong with a politician and leader going to the site of a humanitarian disaster to see for himself the plight of the refugees and I have nothing against that per se. But to have photos of him looking at the camera, clean and perfectly well-groomed, well it’s all just a big ” look at me” photo op isn’t it? And what’s it all leading to? One question at PMQ s with the PM mocking him! I’d have more admiration if the story had been that Tim had been talking to officials in Greece or Angela Merkel or even councillors at home (as Yvette Cooper did) to kickstart a practical resolution to the plight of these poor people and then it was mentioned that Tim had spent a day in Lesvos talking to these people. Yvette Cooper talked to council leaders and got them to agree that they could all take in 12 refugees each so that would mean the UK could take in 10,000 refugees – that’s what I call a politician resolute on seeking a solution and using their time productively to help refugees. As it is, my response to this story is ” so what?”.

  • Phyllis. I think David Cameron would have given that line regardless of the question.

  • Geoffrey Jenkins 30th Oct '15 - 7:17am

    What does Farron think he is playing at doing is man of the people bit posing on the beach in Lesbos? He calls for Cameron to take in more migrants. Has he not read the reports, or seen the Videos of how the immigrants are repaying their German and Swedish hosts. Is he going to take a migrant into his home? Incidentally does anyone know if Yvette Copper has made good on her promise to do so?


  • Not sure about taking in a refugee but Yvette has written to Cameron asking him to do more to help with humanitarian aid. It’s very clear that the Tories are not for turning on the issue of letting more refugees into the country – quite frankly they would be toast with their own voters if they did (take note Lib Dems look after your core vote first) and so is asking for more aid on the ground. Very powerful letter.

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