About the Rwanda deportations

June 25, 2022

Britain will start legislating on a new Bill of Rights which will establish that the UK Supreme Court rulings have supremacy over the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) decisions. This legislative plan comes shortly after the ECHR issued a last-minute injunction to stop the deportation of migrants on an airplane which was scheduled to leave for Rwanda.

What is Britain’s deportation plan?

The UK reached an agreement with Rwanda in April 2022 to relocate asylum seekers who arrived on British lands. The new immigration policy targets irregular migrants, who can also be people that are fleeing their home countries because of war or because of human rights violations.

According to the UK Defence Ministry, most of these asylum seekers come from Iran, Iraq, Eritrea and Syria. The most popular way of reaching Britain seems to be by small boats. In this respect, it is estimated that more than 28,526 people crossed the English Channel in a small boat in 2021, this accounting to half of all UK asylum claims in 2021. These numbers are in sharp contrast with the 299 migrants that arrived in the UK in 2018.

Why does the UK want to deport its asylum seekers?

The Home Secretary, Priti Patel, stated in April that the reason behind this partnership with Rwanda is the migration crisis that the UK is experiencing, arguing that the UK’s asylum system is collapsing under a combination of real humanitarian crises and evil people smugglers profiteering by exploiting the system for their own gain.’ The Home Office stated that the current asylum system is costing the taxpayer £1.5 billion yearly, the highest amount in over two decades. The UK argues that the £120 million deal with  Rwanda will stem the flow of dangerous cross-Channel trips and will hit the business model of people-smuggling networks.

What is the deal with Rwanda?

The UK will provide Rwanda with approximately £120 million in economic development support in exchange of accepting the asylum seekers. These costs do not include all the deportees’ travel, accommodation , processing and integration expenses in Rwanda.  It is estimated that if these costs are taken into account, the money the UK Government spent on this deal will be roughly the same as what the Government pays now per asylum seeker.

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