July 14, 2024

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Keir Starmer announces UK plan to deport migrants from Rwanda has been scrapped | Politics News

Keir Starmer announces UK plan to deport migrants from Rwanda has been scrapped | Politics News

The new British Prime Minister says the previous Conservative government’s policy was “not deterrent at all”, describing it as “dead and buried”.

British Prime Minister Keir Starmer has said he will not continue the previous Conservative government’s policy of deporting asylum seekers to Rwanda.

“The Rwanda plot was dead and buried before it started. It was never a deterrent,” Starmer said in his first press conference on Saturday after Labour’s landslide general election victory.

“I am not prepared to continue with tricks that do not constitute a deterrent,” Netanyahu told reporters after a cabinet meeting, calling the plan “a problem we inherited.”

Parliament passed the controversial law in April, declaring Rwanda a safe third country, overriding an earlier UK Supreme Court ruling that said the scheme was unlawful on human rights grounds.

Authorities began detaining asylum seekers in May.

The policy was pushed by then-Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, who had promised to stop migrants and asylum seekers arriving on small boats from mainland Europe.

Rights activists and critics of Sunak’s government have criticised the plan to deport people to Rwanda rather than deal with asylum claims at home as inhumane.

They expressed concerns about the East African country’s human rights record, and said asylum seekers risked being returned to countries where they would be in danger.

But when faced with opposition in Parliament, Sunak said in April: “There are no conditions or exceptions. These flights will go to Rwanda.”

Tens of thousands of asylum seekers – many fleeing war and poverty in Africa, the Middle East and Asia – have arrived in Britain in recent years by crossing the English Channel in small boats in perilous journeys organised by people-smuggling gangs.

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Starmer said during his press conference on Saturday that the Rwanda scheme was widely expected to fail.

“Everyone, especially the gangs running this, realized that the chance of going to Rwanda was very small – less than one percent,” he told reporters.

“The chances were that I would not go, not get through, and stay here and therefore in paid accommodation for a very long time.”

Amnesty International Secretary General Agnes Callamard has called on the new Labour government to fulfil its election promise to scrap the Rwanda Accord.

“Our asylum system must focus on providing the security and certainty to which every refugee is entitled, as fairly and efficiently as possible, regardless of how they arrive.” Callamard wrote In a post on social media.

“This is fully consistent with our international obligations, the rule of law and fundamental respect for every human being,” she added.

But Suella Braverman, a Conservative hardliner on immigration who is a likely contender to succeed Sunak as party leader, criticised Starmer’s plan.

“It has taken years of hard work, parliamentary decisions and millions of pounds spent on a plan that would have worked if it had been implemented properly,” May said on Saturday. “There are big problems looming, and I fear that Keir Starmer is the cause of them.”

With a record number of people arriving in the UK in the first six months of the year, it is also unclear what Starmer will do differently to address the migration crisis.

Tim Bell, a political scientist at Queen Mary University of London, told The Associated Press that a Labour government would need to find a solution to the small boats coming across the English Channel.

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“We’ll have to come up with other solutions to deal with this particular problem.”

Meanwhile, Al Jazeera’s Rory Challands, reporting from London on Saturday afternoon, said that apart from the policy announcement on Rwanda, it remained unclear what a Labour government under Starmer would look like.

“There was a lot of talk about the change the government would bring to British life and British politics,” Challands said, referring to the press conference.

“His main theme is that the years of conservative unrest are over,” Chalandes added. “For the first time in a long time, the country will be dealt with first by the government in power, not the party it belongs to.”