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Liz Truss says plan ‘completely moral’ ahead of new legal challenges – live

Liz Truss says plan ‘completely moral’ ahead of new legal challenges - live
Seven people are currently scheduled to be on tonight’s flight to Rwanda

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Liz Truss defends Rwanda asylum scheme as ‘completely legal and moral’

The foreign secretary has insisted the government’s policy to fly asylum seekers to Rwanda is “completely moral” after the Church of England’s senior bishops condemned the plan.

Liz Truss told reporters this morning that “our policy is completely legal, it’s completely moral”. The Church of England had said the plan “should shame us as a nation”.

The comments came after a last-ditch legal effort to block the first flight to Rwanda was rejected yesterday by the Court of Appeal.

Judges upheld a high court ruling last week which found that the removals could go ahead.

The border force workers union PCS, and two charities — Care4Calais and Detention Action — had appealed the decision.

Care4Calais said last night that only seven people were approved for removal on Tuesday’s flight after successful individual challenges in recent days.

Meanwhile, Home Office sources revealed to the Guardian that there was a risk that the first deportation flight to Rwanda carrying asylum seekers could be cancelled.

Three more people, who are due to be on today’s flight, are expected to challenge the decision in the courts.

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Migrants pulled from Rwanda flight ‘will be on next one’, warns Liz Truss

Liz Truss has rejected the Church of England’s condemnation of the plan to put asylum seekers on a one-way flight to Rwanda – insisting the policy is “completely moral”.

The foreign secretary also claimed that dozens of migrants who have been removed from the flight list after individual legal challenges with “be on the next flight”.

Leaders of the Church of England have said the permanent relocation of asylum seekers to central Africa was an “immoral policy” that “shames Britain”.

But Ms Truss said: “Our policy is completely legal, it’s completely moral”, adding: “Those people need to suggest an alternative policy that will be work.”

Read the full story here:

Migrants pulled from ‘moral’ Rwanda flight ‘will be on next one’ Liz Truss warns

‘Our policy is completely legal, it’s completely moral’, says foreign secretary

Adam Forrest14 June 2022 08:13
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Three more people to challenge their place on Rwanda flight in the courts today

Three more people, who are currently due to fly on the Home Office’s deportation flight to Rwanda, will make legal challenges before take-off today.

There are reportedly seven people still scheduled to be on the flight after dozens of asylum seekers won legal challenges and were removed.

A government source told the BBC that they “will do everything possible to keep people on the flight”.

They added: “Campaigners and opponent lawyers will be doing everything possible, exploiting every loophole, throwing in every spurious and meritless claim, to get their client dragged off the flight today.”

Holly Bancroft14 June 2022 07:49
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Liz Truss: Rwanda flights policy is ‘completely moral’

Foreign secretary Liz Truss has defended the government’s policy to send asylum seekers to Rwanda after senior bishops criticised it.

Ms Truss told Sky News that the plan was “completely moral”. She added that she did not agree with the bishops’ criticism, saying: “The people who are immoral in this case are the people traffickers trading in human misery.”

“Those people need to suggest an alternative policy that will work.

“Our policy is completely legal, it’s completely moral.

“What I’m saying to the critics of the policy who don’t have an alternative about how we deal with this illegal migration, is they don’t have an alternative, they are criticising our policy which is effective and does work.”

Holly Bancroft14 June 2022 07:37
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Liz Truss: We are expecting to send Rwanda flight today

Foreign secretary Liz Truss has said that the government expects to send asylum seekers on a flight to Rwanda today despite the number of passengers reaching single figures.

There are currently seven people who are scheduled to be on the flight after the number was whittled down by legal challenges.

Ms Truss said this morning that those criticising the policy need to come up with an alternative for dealing with illegal migration.

Holly Bancroft14 June 2022 07:23
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Home Office source says deportation flight at risk of getting cancelled

Home Office sources revealed to the Guardian that there was a risk that the first deportation flight to Rwanda — carrying asylum seekers — could be cancelled after the legal challenges meant that fewer than 10 people were expected to be on board.

“I think it could be cancelled,” said a government source. “This is due to individual cases rather than a blanket challenge.”

One charity, Care4Calais, said on Monday there were fewer than eight.

Meanwhile, UNHCR has said that Rwanda does not have the capacity to process the claims, and that “there is a risk some migrants could be returned to countries from which they had fled.”

Maroosha Muzaffar14 June 2022 07:15
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Government willing to fly even one asylum seeker to Rwanda, PM’s spokesperson says

The number of asylum seekers on the first charter plane deporting them to Rwanda has dwindled from 130 to seven. However, Downing Street refused to rule out sending an entire charter plane with only one asylum seeker on board.

The refugee charity, Care4Calais group, said only seven people were approved for removal on Tuesday’s flight after successful individual challenges in recent days.

But the prime minister’s official spokesman said: “I’m not aware of there being a set limit.”

The Mirror reported that the spokesperson claimed that the current approach was costing taxpayers £1.5bn each year, including almost £5m a day accommodating asylum seekers in hotels.

Maroosha Muzaffar14 June 2022 07:00
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Migrants will be treated with ‘safety, dignity and respect’, says Rwanda high commissioner

Rwanda’s high commissioner to the UK, Johnston Busingye, lashed out at the critics of the government’s plan to deport asylum seekers and said that they will be treated with “safety, dignity and respect.”

He said that his country will be a “safe haven” for them and that he was “disappointed” that critics had questioned Rwanda’s motives for agreeing to the scheme.

His comments came after it emerged that fewer than 10 migrants are expected to be on the first flight to Rwanda on Tuesday.

Maroosha Muzaffar14 June 2022 06:50
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UN refugee chief calls deportation policy ‘all wrong’

Filippo Grandi, the UN high commissioner for refugees, has condemned the UK’s plan to deport Rwanda asylum seekers and described the policy as “all wrong.”

Mr Grandi said: “The precedent that this creates is catastrophic for a concept that needs to be shared, like asylum.”

In a statement, the UN refugee chief underscored that the UK is a signatory to the International Convention on Refugees and said that “trying to export the responsibilities” that this entailed, “runs contrary to any notion of responsibility and international responsibility-sharing.”

Mr Grandi emphasised: “I mean, saving people from dangerous journeys is great, is absolutely great, but is that the right way to do it? Is that the real motivation for this deal to happen? I don’t think so.”

Maroosha Muzaffar14 June 2022 06:30
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Tory MPs cheer decision to allow first Rwanda deportation flight

Conservative MPs cheered in the House of Commons after it emerged a last-ditch legal bid to block the first Rwanda deportation flight had failed.

Seven people are due to be on board Tuesday’s flight to the east African country after Court of Appeal judges rejected the challenge to a High Court judge’s refusal to grant an injunction.

Read the full story here:

Tory MPs cheer decision to allow first Rwanda deportation flight

Eleven people are due to be on board Tuesday’s flight.

Maroosha Muzaffar14 June 2022 06:15
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Only seven asylum seekers set to be on Rwanda deportation flight after dozens of successful appeals

The first Rwanda deportation flight appears to be in doubt after a series of legal challenges have pushed the number of asylum seekers booked onboard into single figures.

The refugee charity, Care4Calais group, said only seven people were approved for removal on Tuesday’s flight after successful individual challenges in recent days.

Up to 130 people were told they could be sent to Rwanda under home secretary Priti Patel’s highly controversial scheme. But the Home Office said last week that 31 people were due to leave on the first flight.

Read the full story by Adam Forrest here:

Only seven asylum seekers set to be on Rwanda deportation flight

Home Office fears ‘real prospect’ of number of passengers falling to zero

Maroosha Muzaffar14 June 2022 06:00