HL Deb 25 February 1986 vol 471 cc1038-9WA
Lord Kennet

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What steps they are taking to ascertain the actual numbers and the activities of the estimated 35,000 Soviet seamen on shore leave in the United Kingdom each year from Soviet merchant and fishing vessels in British ports and waters.

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord Glenarthur)

Individual records are not kept of seamen, including Soviet seamen, who came ashore at British ports because under Section 8 of the Immigration Act they are normally exempted from the provision to obtain formal permission from an immigration officer before going ashore. However, they are required to leave the port with the ship and the master is required to provide a crew list and to report any deserters. It would not be right to disclose what steps are taken to monitor their activities.