UK minister Priti Patel’s plan to take illegal migrants to Rwanda gets court approval

UK Home Secretary Priti Patel’s new plan to take illegal migrants to Rwanda has been approved as the High Court in London allows the first flight to proceed.

The Indian-origin cabinet minister has described the new immigration strategy, in which illegal immigrants entering the UK will be taken to Rwanda, a “bold and innovative” move.

Campaigners, however, filed a legal challenge against the plan, but failed in a preliminary legal bid on Friday to halt evictions in the East African country.

Referring to the court’s decision, Patel said, “I welcome the court’s ruling in my favor and will now continue to advance our world-leading migration partnership.”

“People will continue to try to thwart their transfer through legal challenges and last-minute claims, but we will not stop breaking down business fatalities and ultimately saving lives,” she said.

In his decision, the judge acknowledged that the minister had a “material public interest” in being able to carry out his policies.

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“There is a material public interest in being able to enforce the Home Secretary’s immigration decisions,” Justice Jonathan Swift said.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson also described the ruling as “welcome news” after the UK government introduced the new plan in April.

“We cannot allow smugglers to put their lives at risk and our world-leading partnership will help break the business model of these brutal criminals,” Johnson tweeted.

The first deportations under the controversial deal are expected next week following the High Court ruling. But critics and campaigners have confirmed they will take the matter to the Court of Appeals on Monday.

Meanwhile, it has emerged that Prince Charles is said to have privately called the UK government’s plans to send some illegal migrants to Rwanda “horrendous”.

According to ‘The Times’ newspaper, a source in a private conversation overheard the heir to the British throne expressing his opposition to the plans.

The 73-year-old Prince of Wales is said to be particularly disappointed as he is due to represent the Queen at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Rwanda’s capital Kigali this month.

A spokesman for the prince said: “We will not comment on alleged anonymous private conversations with The Prince of Wales, except if he remains politically neutral. Matters of policy are the decision for the government.”

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The scheme will see asylum seekers who make dangerous or illegal travel, such as by small boat or hidden in a lorry, being transferred for their asylum claim to be processed in Rwanda.

Those whose claims are accepted will be supported to build a new life described by the UK as one of the fastest growing economies.

Under the new Migration Partnership with the African country, the UK is investing £120 million in Rwanda’s economic growth and development. Funding will also be provided to support the delivery of asylum operations, housing and integration, similar to the cost spent in the UK for these services.

Patel said, “We have signed a world-leading migration partnership with Rwanda to allow those arriving in the UK dangerously, illegally or unnecessarily to consider their claims for asylum and to be recognized as refugees. You can move there to make your living.” During a visit to Kigali in April.

“This will help break down the business model of people smugglers and prevent loss of life, while ensuring safety for the truly vulnerable,” she said.

The scheme will initially focus primarily on single men arriving in the UK from the English Channel on small boats or disguised in lorries. The UK government has warned that the crisis of illegal immigration through such dangerous routes has reached alarming levels, with more than 28,000 migrants crossing the Channel last year alone.