Rishi Sunak insists gvt will ’vigorously’ challenge court decision on deportation of asylum seekers to Rwanda

On 5 July 2023 at 12:13

Rishi Sunak, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (UK), remains steadfast in his support for the deportation of asylum seekers to Rwanda, despite a recent ruling by the Court of Appeal declaring Rwanda an unsafe destination. Sunak has rejected the notion that the plan is a "gamble" and instead asserted that the government will vigorously challenge the court’s decision.

The Court of Appeal’s ruling contradicted a previous decision by the High Court in December 2022, which had deemed the deportation plan lawful and in accordance with the refugee convention. The plan, known as the "Migration and Economic Development Partnership," was established in April 2022 to facilitate the transfer of migrants and asylum seekers illegally present in the UK to Rwanda.

The implementation of the plan faced delays when organizations advocating for migrants’ rights filed a complaint, resulting in the Court of Appeal reviewing the case and subsequently ruling against the deportation of asylum seekers to Rwanda.

Despite the court’s decision, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Home Secretary Suella Braverman have consistently defended the deportation plan, highlighting Rwanda’s successful management of refugee and migrant crises.

As he addressed the Commons Liaison Committee on Tuesday 4th July 2023, Sunak expressed confidence in challenging the court’s ruling, emphasizing that the safeguards and reassurances received from Rwanda are sufficient.

In response to questions about whether his pledge to "stop the boats" would be affected by the ruling, LBC reported, Sunak stated that it was not on hold and cited the UK’s deal with Albania as an example.

The recent ruling prompted dissatisfaction from the Rwandan government. Yolande Makolo, a spokesperson for the Rwandan government, expressed disagreement with the court’s decision, emphasizing Rwanda’s contributions to addressing the global migration crisis and its commitment to providing a secure and dignified environment for migrants and refugees, where they enjoy equal rights and opportunities.

Makolo reiterated Rwanda’s commitment to making the partnership with the UK work.

Sunak has affirmed that the plan to deport migrants to Rwanda is not on hold.