First flight deporting UK asylum seekers to Rwanda canceled

If Johnson's English nationalist government already had European justice in its sights and wanted to leave its jurisdiction as soon as possible, now more than ever after the Human Rights Court in Strasbourg prevented at the last moment the launch of the first flight to Rwanda with political asylum seekers, a great humiliation for London.

NewsEditor
NewsEditor
14 June 2022 Tuesday 15:11
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First flight deporting UK asylum seekers to Rwanda canceled

If Johnson's English nationalist government already had European justice in its sights and wanted to leave its jurisdiction as soon as possible, now more than ever after the Human Rights Court in Strasbourg prevented at the last moment the launch of the first flight to Rwanda with political asylum seekers, a great humiliation for London.

First there were going to be 130 passengers who, after a series of appeals, were reduced to just seven, too few to compensate for the expense of 600,000 euros to charter the plane, almost one hundred thousand euros per head at the expense of the British taxpayer. But just an hour before the departure of the flight from the Boscombe Down military base, an intervention in extremis by the European court complicated everything. The immigrants were getting off the aircraft as their appeals were accepted, and at 10:30 p.m., the scheduled time for takeoff, there was only one left on board.

The Johnson Government tried whatever it was that the plane made the flight to Kigali, and in the morning the secretary of the Foreign Office, Liz Truss, had assured that this would be the case even if there was only one passenger in the cabin, because the important thing was to set the precedent for deter immigrants from crossing the English Channel. But in the end the operation had to be canceled because Strasbourg (which still has precedence over the British courts in these matters) considered that the safety of some asylum seekers could be at risk in Rwanda, and that in other cases there were procedural problems.

Just as for Johnson breaking the Brexit agreements is a "small detail" aimed at preserving peace in Ulster, sending asylum seekers to the African country is "perfectly legitimate and moral", because deep down it can save lives. of those who were to try in the future to reach England illegally”. Apart from the fact that the premise is questionable, so far this year more than ten thousand immigrants have already arrived on English shores (the same as in all of last year, and we are only in the month of June).

“The arguments of the Johnson Government are unacceptable, and it is a shame that a nation that boasts of its humanity and its democracy such as the United Kingdom, with a tradition of asylum, outsources its immigration policy to Rwanda, a country where the opposition is persecuted and numerous human rights are violated,” says lawyer Lucinda McPherson. One hundred and sixty NGOs, Prince Charles and the entire leadership of the Anglican Church agree with her and have strongly criticized the forced evacuation of foreigners, inspired by the Australian model of sending them to Papua New Guinea and remote islands. , which was in force until recently.

"Our Christian heritage should prompt us to treat with compassion and justice those asylum seekers who flee war, violence and political persecution, or who fear reprisals," said a document signed yesterday by twenty-five bishops, coinciding with the planned departure of the plane to Kigali.

Although the English courts have given a general green light to the Government's policy, all of the hundred or so immigrants whom the Home Office had designated as potential passengers managed to have their appeals succeed individually due to procedural errors or invoking the European Convention on Human Rights, from which Boris Johnson intends to disassociate himself precisely for this reason, in a new rupture of ties with continental neighbors.

Human rights groups demonstrated at the Boscombe Down base and celebrated the suspension of the flight, but the battle has only just begun, because the Johnson Government will not give up its efforts. “We are very disappointed with the behavior of the British justice because the UN's opinion on the legality of the plan and respect for human rights in Rwanda has been made clear. It is an inhumane and brutal decision, ”says Clare Mosley, founder of an NGO that helps immigrants who cross the channel.

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