Migrant smuggling is one of Lebanon’s last businesses

Ibrahim Lachine sold his mother’s furniture to pay for a place on a smuggler’s boat from Lebanon to Cyprus and left without saying goodbye. Stealing was, he admits, a bad thing to do, but the boat mafia wanted $700 (£500) and he couldn’t see any other way to get the money. He was 22 and hadn’t worked for three years. Food came from charities. Rent hadn’t been paid in months. Ibrahim leans back on a plastic chair, tall and angular in a black tracksuit and black running shoes. ‘We were very sad and very poor.’ Then he grins, a little embarrassed but mostly pleased with himself. He says he waited

Boris’s NHS immigrant surcharge shake-up doesn’t go far enough

The Prime Minister has asked the Home Office to remove NHS workers and social care workers from the immigration health surcharge as soon as possible. As Katy Balls reported earlier today, frustrations were growing within the Tory party that healthcare workers could be clobbered with this fee as they work tirelessly to help British patients get through the Covid crisis. It seems Boris Johnson has listened to his backbenchers and u-turned. The fee will be waived for a range of health staff, from doctors and nurses to technicians and cleaners. This exemption is good news for workers in the healthcare sector, but it shouldn’t be the end of the policy review. This