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“Debating Asylum: The Unraveling Story of UK’s Rwanda Plan and Legal Backlash”



Legal challenges led to the cancellation of the inaugural Rwanda flight in June 2022. If successful, individuals under the plan could attain refugee status in Rwanda; otherwise, they might seek settlement on different grounds or asylum in another “safe third country.”

In November 2023, the UK Supreme Court deemed the Rwanda scheme unlawful. Subsequently, the government proposed a bill aiming to clarify Rwanda’s status as a safe country under UK law.

UNHCR Chief Mr. Grandi expressed concern about countries with more resources shifting asylum responsibilities, contravening refugee protection principles. He emphasized the importance of fair procedures for all asylum seekers, especially in countries bound by conventions.

The UK Home Office countered, stating it’s not abdicating responsibilities, highlighting the partnership with Rwanda and citing previous court affirmations. They also reiterated their commitment to preventing small boat crossings in the English Channel.

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