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© UNHCR/Andrew McConnell

Celebrities’ open letter in full

Celebrities write open letter to the Prime Minister to urge him to think again on refugees

Dear Prime Minister

We are refugees, descendants of refugees and supporters of refugees. For some of us, if we were living in Afghanistan right now, our lives could be in danger, and we would have to become refugees.

The horrifying scenes of those fleeing Afghanistan is a painful reminder of why ordinary people thrown into extraordinary circumstances are forced to escape their homelands in fear of their lives.

We are proud the UK is offering protection to those Afghan refugees able to get onto an official scheme. People up and down the country are doing incredible things to make them welcome as they start their new lives.

But many others have been left behind in grave danger. They will have to escape any way they can – by foot, boat or hiding in the back of a lorry. But proposed new laws would mean our country turning away people like them who are in desperate need of safety.

As a nation we must – and can – do more.

That’s why we are backing Together With Refugees’ call for a kinder, fairer and more effective system for refugees in the UK. We want Afghans and other people across the world fleeing persecution and violence to find safety here as they have in the past, no matter how they arrive.

Now is not the time to turn them away. Now is the time to offer our hand in kindness and protection. We urge you to think again.

Yours sincerely

Riz Ahmed

Ella Al-Shamahi

Dane Baptiste

Angela Barnes

Nazanin Boniadi

Douglas Booth

Frankie Boyle

Sita Brahmachari

Marcus Brigstocke

Jen Brister

Tanya Burr

Simon Callow CBE

Julie Christie

Olivia Colman CBE

Deborah Frances-White

Stephen Fry

Neil Gaiman

Maya Ghazal

Fiona (Fi) Glover

Kerry Godliman

Konnie Huq

Kaiser Chiefs

Emma Kennedy

Shaparak Khorsandi

Joanna Lumley OBE FRGS

Mae Martin

Francesca Martinez

Beth Mead

Patrick Monahan

Dame Jenni Murray DBE

Thandiwe Newton OBE

Rachel Parris

Romesh Ranganathan

Anna Richardson

Robert Rinder MBE

Suzi Ruffell

Fiona Shaw CBE

Imelda Staunton CBE

Juliet Stevenson CBE

Dame Emma Thompson DBE

Gok Wan MBE

Zoë Wanamaker CBE

Samuel West

Benjamin Zephaniah