Asylum seekers arriving in UK on small boats will be sent to Rwanda, BBC — MercoPress
Asylum seekers arriving in UK on small boats will be sent to Rwanda, BBC
Some asylum seekers who arrive in the UK on small boats across the Channel will be given a one-way ticket to Rwanda, under the government’s new plans, the BBC reports. Home Secretary Priti Patel is in the African nation to sign a deal for a £120million lawsuit involving mostly single men arriving in Britain via boat crossings.
Refugee organizations have slammed the plans as cruel and urged a rethink.
Labor said the plan was ‘unworkable, unethical and exorbitant’ – the Lib Dems said it would be costly and ineffective.
The precise details of the plan have yet to be confirmed, but, according to the BBC, the trial would be limited to most single men whom British authorities deem inadmissible.
According to the proposal, Rwanda would take responsibility for them, subject them to an asylum procedure and, at the end of this procedure, if they are successful, they would be granted long-term accommodation in Rwanda.
The Rwandan government has declared that migrants will be “entitled to full protection under Rwandan law, equal access to employment and registration in health and social protection services”.
The UK Home Office believes existing asylum legislation will be sufficient to implement the plan, but questions remain about the legality of the scheme.
Opponents also said the annual cost of the full program would be far higher than the initial payment of £120million and raised concerns about Rwanda’s human rights record.
Wales Secretary Simon Hart said the plan was intended to ensure the government could “distinguish more fairly between asylum seekers, refugees and economic migrants”.
About three-quarters of people who apply for asylum in the UK are granted this status.
Mr Hart said full details of the scheme will be released later on Thursday, but added the underlying motivation for the plan was to break the business model of criminal gangs who put people in small boats to cross the Channel.
In a speech in Kent, Mr Johnson will argue that action must be taken to stop ‘vile smugglers’ turning the ocean into an ‘aquatic graveyard’.
Last year, 28,526 people are known to have crossed in small boats, compared to 8,404 in 2020. Around 600 people made the crossing on Wednesday, and Boris Johnson will say the figure could rise to 1,000 a day within weeks.
“We cannot maintain a parallel illegal system,” he will say. “Our compassion may be infinite, but our ability to help people is not.”