Police have released two men who were detained by Border Force officials in Glasgow, as Glasgow locals who had spent the day protesting the Home Office action rejoiced.

Demonstrators in Kenmure Street, Pollokshields, blocked the immigration enforcement van for hours on Thursday, with one lying underneath the vehicle.

Around 200 protesters were at the scene, with chants of “Leave our neighbours, let them go” and “Cops go home” being heard as a ring of police stood around the van.

HeraldScotland: Police released a statement shortly after 5pm saying the men would be releasedPolice released a statement shortly after 5pm saying the men would be released

Shortly after 5pm, Police Scotland released a statement saying the men would be released.

Scottish Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said the Home Office’s actions had been “reckless” - and suggested it was a deliberate attempt to "provoke".

Saying that immigration was a reserved issue, he tweeted: “Situation should never have occurred – the UK Govt’s hostile environment is not welcome here”.

He added: “I abhor Home Office immigration policy at the best of times, but to have taken the action they have today is at best completely reckless, and at worst intended to provoke.”

Making a statement on Twitter, Nicola Sturgeon said today's events were "entirely down to the UK Home Office."

She said: "Police Sctland were in an invidious position - they do not assist in the removal of asylum seekers but do have a duty to protect public safety. They act independently of ministers, but I support this decision."

She added: "I disagree fundamentally with @ukhomeoffice immigration policy but even putting that aside, this action was unacceptable. To act in this way, in the heart of a Muslim community as they celebrated Eid, and in an area experiencing a Covid outbreak was a health & safety risk.

"Both as MSP and as FM, I will be demanding assurances from the UK government that they will never again create, through their actions, such a dangerous situation. No assurances were given - and frankly no empathy shown - when I managed to speak to a junior minister earlier.

"Lastly, I am proud to represent a constituency and lead a country that welcomes and shows support to asylum seekers and refugees. The day when immigration policy is the responsibility of @ScotParl can’t come soon enough."

A Police Scotland statement said Superintendent Mark Sutherland had decided to release the detained men “in order to protect the safety, public health and wellbeing of those involved in the detention and subsequent protest”.

The force asked those nearby to disperse from the area as soon as possible.

A spokeswoman said earlier: “Police Scotland does not assist in the removal of asylum seekers. Officers are at the scene to police the protest and to ensure public safety.”

Glaswegians have now hailed the result as two men who were detained have been released and walked to a nearby mosque. 

They had been in the van for approximately eight hours, while protestors circled round - some sitting on the ground and one even lying underneath the vehicle.

Capturing the moment the two men were released from the immigration van, one local said they had "never been prouder to live in this wonderful community."

Another added: "I have never been more proud of Glasgow. No hostile environment here."

Crowds could be heard cheering as the men emerged from the man, and proceeded to follow in a great procession to the mosque where they were to be released.

The Home Office was approached for comment on the situation.