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Asylum seekers in UK win permission to challenge Rwanda plan

March 14, 2023 at 4:55 pm

Hundreds of demonstrators gather during a protest against the UK’s plan to send migrants and asylum seekers to Rwanda and the court’s decision on the matter in front of the Ministry of Interior in London, United Kingdom [Raşid Necati Aslım/Anadolu Agency]

A group of asylum seekers in the UK won permission to challenge the country’s Rwanda policy, media reports said Tuesday, Anadolu News Agency reports.

A Court of Appeal judge ruled that the group can challenge the Home Office for what it claims has been a failure to consider the dangers and risks of deportation to Rwanda as part of Britain’s controversial policy.

Ten people from conflict zones, who are threatened with removal to Rwanda, claim there has been a failure to consider the risks, according to the Guardian newspaper.

Vice President of the Court of Appeal’s Civil Division, Lord Justice Underhill, granted permission for the group to appeal the controversial Rwanda policy on limited grounds.

The asylum seekers from Iran, Iraq and Syria are involved in the legal challenge as they have all been threatened with removal to Rwanda, according to the report.

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Last year, the British government announced a new and controversial relocation plan that would see asylum seekers attempting to enter the UK being sent to Rwanda for resettlement.

The policy sparked international criticism. But the British High Court ruled in December that the plans to deport asylum seekers to Rwanda are lawful.

“UNHCR considers that the UK-Rwanda arrangement contravenes the UK’s international obligations and fails to meet the required standards relating to the legality and appropriateness of transfers of asylum-seekers,” the UN refugee agency said in a statement in December.

Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, said in a speech 4 January that tackling the problem of irregular migration boats, also known as “Channel crossings”, is among the top five priorities of his government as a record 45,756 migrants crossed the Channel to the UK in 2022, according to official data.

Later in that month, the top Court in London granted an appeal to a charity that challenged the Court’s decision that plans to send asylum seekers to Rwanda while their status is decided are lawful in broad principle.

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