CAMPAIGNERS who want to close Campsfield House immigration centre in Kidlington have welcomed a new report that suggests limiting the time detainees are held.

A parliamentary inquiry has issued a report saying a 28-day limit should be imposed on detainees and that a wider range of alternatives should be considered to detention.

The report highlighted that detention across the UK was used “disproportionately frequently.”

It added that the decision to detain should be “very rare and detention should be for the shortest possible time and only to effect removal.”

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One of the founders of Campaign to Close Campsfield, Bill MacKeith, praised the report as a step in the right direction.

Mr MacKeith, who submitted evidence to the inquiry, said: “We welcome the report as a first step to proper parliamentary scrutiny of immigration detention in the UK.

“We support the recommendations.”

The Home Office and the Ministry of Justice are seeking a 290-bed extension to the 276-bed centre in Langford Lane, which opened in 1993.

A Home Office spokeman said: “Detention is an important part of a firm but fair immigration system, helping to ensure that those with no right to remain in the UK are returned to their home country if they will not leave voluntarily.

“People are only detained for the shortest period necessary and all detention is reviewed on a regular basis to ensure it remains justified and reasonable.”