People seeking asylum in the UK will be sent to Rwanda for processing under a new deal negotiated by Priti Patel.
The home secretary traveled to the central African country yesterday following the completion of the deal, which is said to have cost £120million.
Labor has called it an “unworkable, unethical and blackmailing policy” that will make it “harder, not easier, to get quick and fair asylum decisions”, while charities have expressed concern about sending asylum seekers abroad.
origins of the plan
To some extent, “the policy reflects the approach of Australia, which has one of the strictest and most rigorous controversial immigration regulations in the world,” said Nicole Johnston Sky news. “Offshore processing of asylum seekers has been the cornerstone of the Australian government’s refugee policy for years,” she said.
At the The times, Matt Dathan agreed that Patel “hopes to emulate Australia’s approach”. Officials have been there since she moved into the Interior Ministry in 2019 explore measures battle dangerous canal crossings and “were instructed to engage in ‘blue sky thinking,'” he said.
“Various targets have been circulated and dismissed as unprofitable or rejected by the host country,” Dathan added. These included Ascension Island in the South Atlantic, Albania and Ghana, as well as Gibraltar and the Isle of Wight. “But Rwanda was always the most promising country to do business with.”
Denmark already has an agreement with Rwanda to take in migrants, but it is not known if anyone was actually sent to the African country from Europe.
Rwanda and Great Britain
The UK’s new partnership with Rwanda “is at the heart of a broader political attack” on migration, he said BBC‘s Mark Easton, but it “is likely to prove extremely controversial and legally strained”. It is expected to focus on single men rather than women and children.
“Critics point to Rwanda’s poor human rights record,” he explained, meaning ministers are expected to explain why it is “the right place to entrust human rights protections to vulnerable asylum seekers who hoped the United Kingdom would protect them”.
With an estimated 127,163 refugees and asylum seekers, Rwanda has shown that it is “hospitable to refugees and experienced in hosting,” said Cristiano d’Orsi, lecturer in international law at the University of Johannesburg. It has become home to Congolese refugees, as well as large numbers of Burundian people whose rights are “protected by various laws,” for whom he wrote The conversation.
“Nevertheless, they do not have many rights” and they are “still a long way from being able to lead a self-determined life”.
In which Daily MailStephen Glover referred to the conclusions of a 2020 Human Rights Watch report that detained or threatened high-profile government critics and that “arbitrary detention, ill-treatment and torture continued in official and unofficial detention facilities.”
“Not the kind of place that most of us would end up in, or with which government we should seek a close partnership,” Glover said.
Welsh Minister Simon Hart acknowledged this morning that there have been allegations of human rights abuses in Rwanda. But he told it Sky News’ Kay Burley “That doesn’t change the fact that their reputation with migrants and their economic advances are phenomenal – so I don’t think we want to write that off now.”
https://www.theweek.co.uk/news/politics/956440/why-the-uk-chose-rwanda-to-process-asylum-seekers Why the UK chose Rwanda to handle asylum seekers