The Rwanda plan, a high-profile antidote to illegal immigration was first proposed by Boris Johnson in the spring of 2022. The plan went as follows, any immigrant who came to the country illegally would be automatically deported to Rwanda where they would apply for refugee status and if accepted, would stay there. Any unsuccessful application or failure to apply will end in deportation back to the country of the asylum seeker's origin. The planned policy was signed by the then Home Secretary Priti Patel. Johnson believed that the proposed plan would discourage people from making the very unsafe journey crossing the English Channel.
When the policy was first introduced there was a lot of pushback from the opposition with many calling the plan “cruel” and “nasty”.
With the very vocal support of then Home Secretary Suella Braverman, Rishi Sunak was very open about getting the ball running. “I am prepared to do what is necessary to get flights off. I will not take the easy way out,” Sunak said when addressing the result of the proposal. Five judges of the Supreme Court unanimously rejected the planned Rwanda proposal calling it “unlawful” and agreeing that the East African country would not be a safe country for asylum seekers. The court referenced the government's disapproval of Rwanda's processing of asylum claims, especially for those who are coming in from war-torn countries.
The Supreme Court accepted that “substantial grounds for believing that the removal of the claimants to Rwanda would expose them to a real risk of ill-treatment”.
However, the Tory Right seems to be rejecting the court's decision with Conservative party vice-chair Lee Anderson advising Sunak to “ignore the laws and send them straight back” Sunak has plans to work around the court the rejection. In a press conference held on Wednesday, the Prime Minister said “We will take all the necessary steps to ensure that we can remove any further blockages to us getting this policy executed and getting planes leaving as planned in the spring of next year.”
The rejection by the court has left the government scrambling for a new plan to bring the policy into production. Sunak assured that he will be “working extremely hard” to get the flights off by Spring.
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