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British historians demand an immediate relaxation of rules for Ukrainian refugees

More than a hundred leading British historians have signed a letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson demanding an immediate relaxation of rules for Ukrainian refugees. The text of the letter and the list of names are as follows:


Dear Prime Minister,

We the undersigned are professional historians, many of whom have spent their careers studying the wars and refugee crises of the twentieth century. We write urgently to ask your government to immediately relax the rules of entry for Ukrainian refugees fleeing from an unlawful war of aggression. The current delays are unacceptable in light of the unfolding emergency, and put your government far behind the generous schemes already operating across Europe. We are reminded of the poor response of the British government to the plight of the Jews of central Europe in the 1930s, thousands of whom later perished in the Holocaust. Then British officials restricted entry to those who could be funded from private British sources or who would be useful for the British economy. If your government indeed has ‘huge compassion’, as your Defence Secretary suggests, it is time to demonstrate it on a large scale. These are not illegal immigrants, spies or terrorists, but frightened and disorientated women, children and the elderly who hope for better from a country whose values and material advantages ought to make it an obvious refuge for those driven by war from their homeland. We earnestly hope that you will learn the lessons from past history, and open Britain’s doors to those desperately seeking a place of safety.


Professor Lynn Abrams FBA (University of Glasgow)

Professor Christopher Andrew FBA (University of Cambridge)

Professor Nigel Ashton (LSE)

Professor Duncan Bell FBA (University of Cambridge)

Sir Antony Beevor

Professor Maxine Berg FBA (University of Warwick)

Professor Paul Betts (University of Oxford)

Patrick Bishop

Professor Donald Bloxham (University of Edinburgh)

Professor Joanna Bourke FBA (Birkbeck, University of London)

Professor Tanja Bueltmann (University of Strathclyde)

Professor Kathleen Burk (University College, London)

Dr. Mathilde von Bulow (St Andrews University)

Professor Jane Caplan (University of Oxford)

Professor Steve Casey (LSE)

Dr Helen Castor

Dr. Emile Chabal (University of Edinburgh)

Professor Peter Clarke FBA (University of Cambridge)

Professor Patricia Clavin FBA (University of Oxford)

Dr. Oli Charbonneau (University of Glasgow)

Jessie Childs

Professor Samuel K. Cohn (University of Glasgow)

Professor Stefan Collini FBA (University of Cambridge)

Professor Martin Conway (University of Oxford)

Professor Martin Daunton FBA (University of Cambridge)

Professor Anne Deighton (University of Oxford)

Professor Saul David

Professor Norman Davies FBA (St Antony’s College, Oxford)

Professor Sir Tom Devine FBA (University of Edinburgh)

Professor Costas Douzinas (Birkbeck, University of London)

Dr. Sarah Dunstan (University of Glasgow)

Professor David Edgerton FBA (Kings College London)

Professor Marianne Elliott FBA (University of Liverpool)

Richard van Emden

Professor Martin Evans (University of Sussex)

Professor Sir Richard Evans FBA (University of Cambridge)

Professor David Feldman (Birkbeck College, London)

Dr. Matthew Franks (University of Leeds)

Professor Patrick Finney (Aberystwyth University)

Professor Sir Roderick Floud FBA

Professor Roy Foster FBA (University of Oxford)

Dr. Eva Frojmovic (University of Leeds)

Professor Karin Friedrich (University of Aberdeen)

Professor Robert Frost FBA (University of Aberdeen)

Professor Peter Gatrell FBA (University of Manchester)

Professor Stephen Gethins (University of St Andrews)

Professor Gary Gerstle FBA (University of Cambridge)

Professor Julie Gottlieb (University of Sheffield)

Dr. Jaclyn Granick (Cardiff University)

Professor Matthew Grimley (University of Oxford)

Professor Abigail Green (University of Oxford)

Professor Adrian Gregory (University of Oxford)

Professor Emma Griffin (President of the Royal Historical Society)

Professor James Harris (University of Leeds)

Professor Ruth Harris FBA (University of Oxford)

Professor Sir Brian Harrison FBA (University of Oxford)

Professor Sudhir Hazareesingh FBA (University of Oxford)

Roger Hermiston

Dr. Fabian Hilfrich (University of Edinburgh)

Professor Antony G. Hopkins FBA (University of Cambridge)

Dr. Daniel Hucker (University of Nottingham)

Dr. Laure Humbert (University of Manchester)

Professor Benjamin Jackson (University of Oxford)

Professor Julian Jackson FBA (Queen Mary, University of London)

Professor Peter Jackson (University of Glasgow)

Professor Heather Jones (UCL)

Professor Matthew Jones (LSE)

Professor David Kaufman (University of Edinburgh)

Professor Claire Langhamer (Director, Institute of Historical Research, London)

Damien Lewis

Professor Julia Lovell FBA (Birkbeck College, London)

Professor Piers Ludlow (LSE)

Dr Robert Lyman

Professor Joe Maiolo (Kings College, London)

Dr. Martin MacGregor (University of Glasgow)

Dr. Andrew Mackillop (University of Glasgow)

Professor Evan Mawdsley (University of Glasgow)

Professor Christopher Miller (University of Glasgow)

Professor Margaret Macmillan FBA (University of Oxford)

Professor Peter Mandler FBA (University of Oxford)

Professor Ian McBride (University of Oxford)

Dr. Carmen Mangion (Birkbeck College, London)

Giles Milton

Professor Rana Mitter FBA (University of Oxford)

Professor David Motadel (LSE)

Professor Maria Misra (University of Oxford)

Clare Mulley

Professor Philip Murphy (Institute for Historical Research, London)

Professor Sir Anton Muscatelli FRSE (Principal and Vice-Chancellor, University of Glasgow)

Professor Holger Nehring (University of Stirling)

Professor Luck Noakes (University of Exeter)

Professor Phillips O’Brien (University of Glasgow)

Professor Richard Overy FBA (University of Exeter)

Simon Parkin

Professor Senia Paseta (University of Oxford)

Dr Effie G.H. Pedaliu (LSE)

Professor Sir Paul Preston FBA (LSE)

Professor Pierre Purseigle (University of Warwick)

Dr Damien van Puyvelde (University of Glasgow)

Dr Mike Rapport (University of Glasgow)

Dr Tim Rees (University of Exeter)

Dr Steven Reid (University of Glasgow)

Professor Jessica Reinisch (Birkbeck College, London)

Professor Eugene Rogan FBA (University of Oxford)

Professor Angela Romano (University of Glasgow)

Dr Michael Rowe (Kings College London)

Professor Guy Rowlands (University of St Andrews)

Dr James Ryan (University of Cardiff)

Professor Simon Schaffer FBA (University of Cambridge)

Professor Robert Service FBA (University of Oxford)

Professor Gary Sheffield (University of Buckingham)

Professor Alex Shepard FBA (University of Glasgow)

Professor Brendan Simms (University of Cambridge)

Professor Stephen Smith FBA (University of Oxford)

Professor Nick Stargardt (University of Oxford)

Professor David Stevenson (University of Glasgow)

Professor Ray Stokes (University of Glasgow)

Professor Dan Stone (Royal Holloway, London)

Professor Matthew Strickland (University of Edinburgh)

Dr. Natalia Telepneva (University of Strathclyde)

Professor Pat Thane FBA (Birkbeck College, London)

Professor David Thackeray (University of Exeter)

Professor Martin Thomas (University of Exeter)

Professor Charles Townshend FBA (Keele University)

Professor Richard Toye (University of Exeter)

Professor Frank Trentmann (Birkbeck College, London)

Professor Hans van de Ven FBA (University of Oxford)

Guy Walters

Professor Arne Westad FBA (University of East Anglia and Yale)

Professor Neville Wylie (University of Stirling)

Dr. Benjamin Thomas White (University of Glasgow)

Professor Vladislav Zubok (LSE)







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