Rwanda will be able to take ‘thousands’ of migrants as soon as removal flights begin, claims Suella Braverman as she hits back at ‘critics who want to scrap the deal’
- Home Secretary will arrive in Kigali to ‘reinforce commitment’ to the asylum deal
Rwanda will be able to take ‘thousands’ of migrants as soon as removals flights begin, Suella Braverman said last night.
The Home Secretary, who arrives in Kigali today to ‘reinforce commitment’ to the asylum deal, attacked Labour and other critics who claim the scheme will only be able to take a few hundred Channel migrants.
The Rwandan government will be able to bring large numbers of beds on-stream as soon as removals flights from the UK are cleared for take-off, Mrs Braverman said. She also described Rwanda as ‘one of the world’s safest countries’ ahead of a series of top-level meetings to discuss next stages of the scheme.
She added said: ‘The suggestion that Rwanda can only take 200 people is completely false narrative peddled by critics who want to scrap the deal.
‘Rwanda has the capacity to accommodate tens of thousands of people, and can quickly stand this up once flights begin.’
Rwanda will be able to take ‘thousands’ of migrants as soon as removals flights begin, Suella Braverman said last night
Her remarks setting out the scope of the scheme come after a debate in the Commons on Monday, when shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper claimed: ‘At most, the Rwandan authorities say that they may take a couple of hundred people.’
During this weekend’s trip to the east African nation, Mrs Braverman is due to visit new accommodation sites being built by the Rwandan government to house migrants who will be sent from Britain.
Under the terms of the deal signed last April migrants will be handed a one-way ticket to Rwanda and will claim asylum there rather than in the UK.
The Home Office’s inaugural removals flight to Rwanda was halted at the 11th-hour in June by the European Court of Human Rights. The scheme has since been bogged down by legal challenges – but it was declared lawful by High Court judges in December. Appeal hearings are due to take place in the coming weeks.
Earlier this month Prime Minister Rishi Sunak predicted removals flights could begin by the summer, and said he was confident the plan would clear its legal hurdles in the coming months.
During her trip, the Home Secretary is due to meet Rwandan president Paul Kagame, a former military officer who has been in power since 2000.
‘We will discuss all aspects of the partnership, which is not just about deterring illegal and dangerous journeys to the UK, but about ensuring those genuinely in need of protection are supported to build a new life in Rwanda,’ Mrs Braverman said.
The UK government has asked the European Court of Human Rights to stop using ‘deeply flawed’ powers which blocked the inaugural flight to Rwanda. If Strasbourg fails to agree, ministers will change UK law so they can ignore the European court’s attempts to interfere, the new Illegal Migration Bill sets out.
It came as at least 100 migrants reached the UK by small boat across the Channel yesterday. So far, 3,198 migrants have crossed from northern France since the start of the year.
Source: Read Full Article