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Last updateTue, 17 Mar 2015 2pm

Lib Dems, UKIP slam Home Office "Go Home or Face Arrest" campaign

A Home Office plan to deploy vans with billboards around London, warning illegal immigrants to leave the UK voluntarily or face arrest, has been slammed for being "nasty" and "unpleasant" by UKIP leader Nigel Farage.

The "advertising" vans are part of a wider campaign which will see the "go home or face arrest" message displayed in leaflets, posters and even local newspapers in area with large ethnic minority populations, including Hounslow, Barking, Ealing and Brent.

The campaign however, hasn't gone down well, even with Farage, whose party advocates the immediate removal of all illegal immigrants and a five-year freeze on permanent settlement in the UK by immigrants.

"I think the actual tone of the billboards is nasty, unpleasant, Big Brother. I don’t think using messages like this will make any difference. What will make a difference is enforcing our borders properly," Farage told ITV News.

He also said the billboards were really about the Conservative Party pleading with voters to not vote for UKIP, which currently enjoys a membership of just over 34,000 and is yet to win a seat in the Commons.

The billboards have also been attacked by the Liberal Democrats, who appear not to have been consulted on their deployment.

A party spokesman told the Liberal Democrat Voice blog: "These poster vans were not cleared or agreed by Liberal Democrats in government. We are totally committed to tackling illegal immigration but this is a disproportionate, distasteful and ineffective way to do it."

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