Priti Patel insists that Rwanda is “safe”, despite warnings by Foreign Office officials about torture and murders.
After court documents revealed that officials from the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office had concerns about plans to send illegal migrants into central Africa, the home secretary has made the latest defense.
Unnamed FCDO workers said that torture and even killings are acceptable in Rwanda. In 2021 , the UK’s high commissioner to Rwanda warned that Rwanda had been accused of recruiting refugees for armed operations in neighboring countries.
Ms. Patel however stated that Rwanda was a safe country.
“All our work has shown that and the government-to-government work has shown that too,” she added.
“You refer to comments made by officials from a different department of government, but it’s the Home Office who has led the Economic Development Migration Partnership which is our resettlement partner to Rwanda.
“Rwanda, a secure country, is what all of our work with the government in Rwanda shows.”
After the initial flight to Rwanda was halted by legal challenges, no one has been sent there yet.
Currently, charities and asylum seekers are involved in legal action against the UK government regarding the scheme.
Lord Justice Lewis ruled Wednesday that the public could not see four excerpts of advice from the FCDO the Home Office regarding the plan.
The government wanted to keep 10 passages secret.
Next month, a full hearing will be held to determine if the plan is legal.
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Ms. Patel declined to endorse any candidate when she was asked which of Rishi Sunak or Liz Truss would best serve the Rwanda policy.
She stated that it was government policy to implement the resettlement program to Rwanda. This is not about any candidate, it’s the work of government.
“It is now set in stone by the new immigration plan, published in March of last year.”
As part of their campaign to become the next Tory leader, both Mr Sunak as well as Ms Truss backed the Rwandan policy.