Tag Archives: deportation

Why would the UK give asylum to refugees from Rwanda if that country is safe?

Rishi Sunak – stop the boats: is he trying to trick us, claiming it is safe to send asylum-seekers to Rwanda while GRANTING asylum to people from that country who are endangered by the regime there?

The Tory government’s argument that Rwanda is a safe country to which the UK can send “illegal” migrants has been called into question after it was revealed that the Home Office gave asylum in this country to refugees from there.

While Rishi Sunak and a succession of Home Secretaries have been arguing in court and Parliament that Rwanda is a safe place to send asylum-seekers, they were also giving four Rwandans refugee status in the UK.

The in-private finding that their fears of persecution were “well-founded” undermines public claims that the country is safe; if people indigenous to that country are in danger there, how can foreign nationals be safe?

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The revelation, after an investigation by The Observer and Led By Donkeys, raises fresh questions about UK police ahead of this week’s debate in the House of Lords of the Rwanda Bill that claims Rwanda is “unequivocally” safe.

The investigation has also seen details of a dossier compiled by a western intelligence agency that accused Rwanda of orchestrating a dirty tricks campaign to smear and undermine critics including those based in the UK. It is further claimed that a London PR firm set up social media accounts to target a British author, but the company has denied this.

One of the Rwandans was granted asylum by the Home Office on 12 October, the day after the government concluded a case in the supreme court arguing the country was safe.

The refugee was a supporter of an opposition party led by Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza, who is campaigning for justice for colleagues who have been killed or disappeared. The Rwandan also witnessed alleged atrocities committed by president Paul Kagame’s forces in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

He and his wife were granted asylum with the Home Office stating in a letter: “We accept that you have a well-founded fear of persecution and therefore cannot return to your country Rwanda, and we have recognised that you are a refugee under the 1951 Refugee Convention.”

The refugee, who still fears for his safety, said: “Britain should stop pretending this is a safe place. Find some other excuse for sending people to Rwanda but don’t say it’s because the place is ‘safe’, because that’s just insulting to people like me.”

More information is available in the Observer article (link below).

Will it be enough to foil the Tory government’s attempt to say Rwanda is safe? Probably not, due to the huge Tory majority in the House of Commons.

But it may be enough to persuade voters – during an election year – that we have a government that says one thing in public and does another in private. And we don’t want liars and hypocrites like that.

Source: Revealed: UK granted asylum to Rwandan refugees while arguing country was safe | Migration | The Guardian


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Asylum-seeker commits suicide on Bibby Stockholm as Parliament talks about Rwanda

The barge: Bibby Stockholm has been modified to take nearly twice as many asylum-seekers as it would have accommodated when it was a prison, creating serious humanitarian concerns – and now somebody has died there.

An asylum-seeker who had been sent to the converted prison ship Bibby Stockholm by the Tory government has committed suicide there (it is understood), while the UK’s Parliament debated plans to deport people like him to Rwanda.

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Conditions on the barge have been a matter of hot dispute since the Tories hired it – especially as the Home Office has refused to allow MPs from other parties to visit it and find out what it’s like for themselves:

To the Tories, it seems, the issue of asylum-seekers is one of logistics. They are cargo, not kinfolk, and as such may be handled in any way the lords and masters of the UK deem fit. The most common way seems to be to stoke hatred in order to provide a common enemy for the UK’s voters – one who isn’t a Tory, that is.

Some of us disagree with this policy:

Meanwhile, it seems the Rwanda deportation scheme is becoming ever-more-expensive, despite nobody having been moved anywhere (apart from Tory Home Secretaries):

And the cost of Bibby Stockholm itself is much greater:

It seems that, now, we must also count the cost in human lives.


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Don’t be fooled: Tory government ISN’T imploding over Rwanda deportation policy

His answer to everything: Rishi Sunak is trying to distract us from the real problems facing the UK – by pointing us at an invented bogeyman: migrants whose Channel crossings are only illegal because his government criminalised them.

It was a nice piece of political theatre. But what actually happened over the Tory government’s controversial Rwanda policy?

Well, we could start with this:

It seems to This Writer that Rishi Sunak got everything he wanted: his Rwanda deal is back on, sure – but more importantly for the Tories, they have used it as a smokescreen under which they have destroyed human rights in the UK.

Oh, you missed that?

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The European Court of Human Rights is being denied jurisdiction here. So, if you are in the UK, your human rights aren’t protected any more. Oh, you thought it just applied to asylum-seekers?

The UK no longer complies with United Nations treaties on refugees.

The Human Rights Act and the Modern Slavery Act have been bypassed. If you are in the UK, that will have an effect on you if the Tories – or any other UK government decide they want it to.

Government ministers will get to decide what happens to people coming to the UK – and, if you are in the UK, whether those decisions will be applied to you as well. You will have no recourse to the courts for a legal judgement.

This is because the changes have been made to UK law – and UK law applies to all UK residents (apart from members of the government and the super-rich who can bypass it, obviously).

In fairness, the changes to the law haven’t happened yet – but they will. Here’s a reason:

I dont agree with Baron Sikka that the Tories are trying to find a platform on which they can win a general election and save their careers (that’s what he means by “save their skins”). They’ll rubber-stamp these erosions of your rights because they want to.

Still, some have optimistically speculated on what might happen if opportunistic Tory MPs break ranks and rebel. We’ll discuss some of the events mentioned here, further down the article:

Some have taken a more pragmatic view, accepting that the changes will happen and what they mean:

That is fascism: powerful nationalism, disdain for human rights, identification of “enemies” as a unifying cause, obsession with national security.

If you don’t recognise those words, I’ve just quoted four of the 14 generally-accepted “warning signs of fascism”.

Rishi Sunak announced this descent into fascism in a press conference at 11am yesterday (December 7). The press asked whether the vote on it would be treated as a confidence issue, and he made it clear that it would not:

So there it is.

Is he really relying on Labour to support him? No. Don’t be fooled. He expects his Parliamentary party to support him; the words about Labour were simply to undermine Keir Starmer’s electoral position – make him look weak on immigration. And, of course, these words are meant to make Sunak’s position seem acceptable.

Consider the words of Mhairi Black, in the video clip below:

“[Fascism] arrives under the guise of respectability and pride, that will then be refused to anyone that is deemed different. It arrives through the ‘othering’ of people – the normalisation of human cruelty… The warning signs are there for everyone to see – whether they admit it or not.”

Here’s the economist Richard Murphy:

If you don’t share his view, consider yourself to have joined the ranks of the fascists.

How did we get here? Well, the most recent events were probably kicked off by Keir Starmer, when he put his own boot into the Rwanda deportation policy at Prime Minister’s Questions:

We were reminded that only 100 people can possibly be sent to Rwanda, and that the deal is reciprocal, meaning Rwandan people will be sent to the UK. That means it will not make any difference to inward migration into this country.

The scheme’s cost was mentioned by Starmer but Sunak coasted over it. In fact it is now at least £240 million, as the government has provided an extra £100 million very recently. If we send anybody there, in the end, we have to pay for their accommodation and upkeep for five years.

Meanwhile, the Tories have lost 17,000 asylum seekers. These people have just disappeared.

Late in the afternoon, this landed on ‘X’:

“We said we would do what was needed to stop the boats.” This wasn’t it. This Writer has heard nothing from the Tories to show that they have actually taken any steps to ensure that Rwanda is safe for asylum-seekers, as the Supreme Court’s judgement implied that it should.

My impression is that this Bill will be nothing more than a declaration that the government says Rwanda is safe. That is no way to reassure anybody.

In any case, it won’t “stop the boats”. That part of the problem is being handled via international agreements to target the “criminal gangs” and reduce the number of people leaving their countries of origin in the first place – as This Site has always claimed was necessary.

That didn’t stop James Cleverly, the new Home Secretary, from spouting that tired old line – and getting hammered by people who see this vote-grubbing publicity stunt for what it is (an attempt to win votes from racists after a campaign to convince them that Johnny Foreigner is secretly invading):

Then Rwanda threw a fly in the ointment: its government issued a statement saying it could not support the deal if it does not adhere to international law.

Clearly, Minister Biruta, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation, had read the new Bill and spotted the parts that depart from international law.

Two hours later, Immigration Minister Robert Jenrick resigned, saying the new Bill did not go far enough for him:

These events fuelled debate on the subject, which continued overnight:

Suella Braverman, the former Home Secretary, also stuck her oar in – but was dismissed by the BBC’s Nick Robinson who, on the Today programme, said her attitude was that it was “all about her”. Still, her intervention may be divisive within the Conservative Party.

Then Sunak held his press conference. Here’s an analysis of it:

Again, speculation came back to whether this is a vote of confidence.

And again, we come back to the fact that every Tory MP knows their career is at stake. Their government is failing in the opinion polls and they may lose their seats at the next general election.

So it is in their best interests to put that election off as long as possible, in the hope that their party’s fortunes will improve.

Also, it should not be considered a secondary issue that the destruction of human rights represented by the Rwanda legislation is something many Tory MPs have desired for a long time.

Wait, watch and learn: the Tories are rushing their Rwanda legislation through Parliament so it won’t be long before we find out whether I’m right.


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Rwanda judgment: the Law has ruled. Why won’t Rishi Sunak accept the Rule of Law?

Suella Braverman and Rishi Sunak: by refusing to accept the Court of Appeal’s judgment on Rwanda deportations, they are denying the Rule of Law. Right?

Once again, for the Tory government: this is awkward.

The Court of Appeal has ruled that sending asylum-seekers to Rwanda will be unlawful, because that country’s assurances that it would not return them to countries where they face persecution or other inhumane treatment are not “sufficient”.

The decision follows a ruling by the High Court that the government’s policy of deporting some asylum-seekers to Rwanda was permissible. An appeal had been launched against the decision by a group of 10 asylum-seekers and the charity Asylum Aid.

Normally, that should be that.

But the Tory government is not accepting this legal ruling and is demanding that it should be taken to the Supreme Court.

Home Secretary Suella Braverman has claimed that the “system is rigged against the British people”.

And Rishi Sunak published a statement online as follows:

Your government should decide who comes here, not “criminal gangs”? Is he suggesting the Court of Appeal is a “criminal gang”? It’s one interpretation of his words!

(In fact, if he disobeys the court’s order, it is Sunak and his government who will be the criminals.)

“Rwanda is a safe country,” he said. This is not true, according to the law.

And his claim that it is this country that should decide who comes here is easily countered. This decision is not about who comes here, but about whether anybody should go to Rwanda. And the answer is nobody.

And now the public purse will have to stump up the exorbitant cost of another court hearing, because this spoilt, petulant man-child and his demonic lieutenant are determined to have their own way. How contemptible.


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Suella Braverman: wrong on crime, wrong on Rwanda, wrong on her own expenses

Suella Braverman: it all seems to be beyond her capabilities – her job, her expenses… everything.

Home Secretary Suella Braverman’s appearances on the Sunday morning political shows really were a plane crash, weren’t they?

She was wrong on sex offences in the UK, blaming “British Pakistani grooming gangs” for the majority when, as Angela Rayner pointed out last week, 300 rapes are committed every day – mostly by white men – and Braverman’s police officers turn a blind eye:

And isn’t this response pertinent?

Jeffrey Epstein may be described as the “groomer to the powerful”. Who did he supply with youngsters for sex? Why can’t the facts be told? Who is being protected?

Meanwhile, on Laura Kuennsberg’s show, Braverman insisted that Rwanda is a safe country to which our refugees can be sent. Is it, though?

She told Kuennsberg seven million people in the UK are out of work; in fact, official figures show the number to be much lower – just 1,253,000.

And finally, while all this has been going on, it seems she’s another Tory who won’t get her expenses claim right:

It seems she

claimed almost £25,000 in expenses over five years to pay for her energy usage and other costs, while living rent-free at her parent’s house during visits to her constituency.

Such financial aids were created to prevent MPs who live outside of London from falling into debt while running two homes, however an investigation by the Mirror found that Ms Braverman uses them to cover the household bills on her £1.2million family home in Bushey, Herts.

Although her expenses do not go against the rules, the hardline Tory has been accused of taking advantage of loophole in the system.

Ms Braverman, who earns £67,505 on top of her MP salary of £84,144, told watchdogs she “fully funds” the home she stays at in Fareham, Hants. However, she failed to explain that the house is actually her parents’ – meaning she stays there rent-free.

Apparently that massive Ministerial salary isn’t enough for her – even though she’s clearly incapable of doing the job properly.


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The social care system is being ruined by profiteers [Also in the news]

This window-writing may have been by a child in care, but it might equally have been written by an adult – or by one of the people employed to care for either of them.

The demand for profit is causing huge harm to the private care system, it has been claimed.

Investor returns have become more important than quality care and workers’ pay, according to research.

Private equity, hedge funds and real estate investment trusts have brought in predatory financial techniques, justified in the name of enticing capital into a sector that the government has persistently failed to adequately fund.

Boris Johnson promised to overhaul the system, more than two years ago. He has yet to lift a finger.

That’s unless you include his government’s Covid-19 strategy that killed – what – 30,000 care home residents, at least?

Also in the news:

Charities are warning that foodbank use will rocket if the Universal Credit cut goes ahead

But the Tories have been pushing more and more people into food poverty. It is their policy.

So why would they care?

Iain Duncan Smith wants civil servants to go back to working in the office

The former Tory leader thinks it’s necessary “because there’s an ecosystem around them made up of cafes, restaurants bars, even theatres and other areas that give people jobs and without people back in their offices, going out for sandwiches, you know, coffees, etcetera that ecosystem will collapse and people will lose their jobs”.

Business chief asks Johnson to save firms from the damage done by Brexit – and goes unanswered

In response, Richard Murphy of Tax Research UK has asked why business leaders are putting up with Johnson.

A reader responded that they are probably waiting for the Tories to further reduce workers rights and financial reporting standards, while another pointed out that Johnson made his position clear three years ago when he said, “F*ck business.”

Abbott calls for end to Patel’s cruel mass deportation flights

The fourth mass deportation flight to Jamaica since the Windrush Scandal will leave the UK today (August 11), showing that Home Secretary Priti Patel and her boss Boris Johnson have learned nothing from it.

The excuse is that the deportees are all dangerous criminals – except they aren’t, according to Labour’s Diane Abbott. And they have served the sentence for their crime.

In fact, they are being subjected to double jeopardy, which should be illegal in UK law – penalising people twice for the same crime. It is imposed because the deportees are not white.

And finally:

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Home Office deletes “fascist Dad’s Army” ‘migrants’ clip released after it was forced to abandon deportation flight

It seems there was more to the Home Office’s video clip about “activist lawyers” than met the eye – and that was already pretty bad.

Apparently the government had been forced to abandon a deportation flight to Spain after last-minute legal challenges meant all 23 passengers had to be allowed off the plane.

It seems that HO had tried to rush through the deportations fast, in order to deny these asylum-seekers the right to appeal; that would be breaking the law. All the lawyers did was insist that these people be allowed their legal rights.

In response, the government department released the tweet attacking “activist lawyers” who “delay and disrupt returns”.

So it seems the line saying, “Soon we will no longer be bound by EU laws and can negotiate our own return arrangements,” was an attempt to taunt those lawyers.

That was a mistake. It provoked complaints – some of them from the lawyers who carry out these actions.

So now the tweet has come down and HO permanent secretary Matthew Rycroft has issued instructions that the term “activist lawyers” should not be used again.

The most effective complaint seems to have come from the economist Jonathan Portes. This Site has huge respect for this gentleman, going back to discussions of the UK economy here many years ago.

He posted a thread showing part of the response he received:

Later, he added this:

By this time, some of the lawyers concerned had already taken to Twitter to put their side of the story across – and it makes interesting reading:

It’s another own-goal for Boris Johnson’s Tory government – and the Home Office that Johnson insists must be run by Priti Patel.

Source: Home Office wrong to refer to ‘activist lawyers’, top official admits | Home Office | The Guardian

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You can believe the Jamaica deportations are questionable after this Home Office boob

Computer says no: the Home Offices systems can’t be trusted – but the Tories happily uses them to deport people.

How can we accept the justice in Home Office deportation decision when civil servants asked a 101-year-old man to get his parents to confirm his identity?

People like Boris Johnson claim the information used by the Home Office to deport 17 people to Jamaica was accurate, but consider this:

Giovanni Palmieri is 101 years old, and Italian. He has lived in the UK since 1966 and applied for settled status in advance of the UK’s departure from the European Union.

But in a classic Little Britain-esque ‘Computer says no’ moment, the Home Office app into which he scanned his passport in order to send his biometric data to the Home Office misunderstood his date of birth.

It interpreted it as being 2019, rather than 1919 – and demanded that his parents must confirm his identity. That would have been a bit tricky!

The Home Office has claimed that other people aged over 100 have successfully used the app – but doesn’t that indicate that other Home Office decisions are also ripe to be queried?

This brings us back to the Jamaica deportation.

How can we be sure of the Home Office’s justification for the removal of those individuals, if its systems cannot even tell that a man is 101, not one?

I am reminded of a time a few years ago when people going through checks on their suitability to work with children, or in security, or other restricted-eligibility jobs were refused because the government’s system showed them as guilty of crimes.

This came as a jarring shock to them – as far as they knew, their records were spotless.

Of course it was another glitch in the system.

But Tories like Boris Johnson are happy to quote such information in order to support the removal of foreign-born people from the UK.

What does it prove? That these individuals had committed crimes? Or that the Tories are racists?

Source: Home Office asks 101-year-old Italian man to get his parents to confirm his identity – Mirror Online

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


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He’s been Home Secretary less than a day and already Sajid Javid is messing it up

According to Larry the Cat’s Twitter account, “The cabinet stand like this because a body language expert thought it would be a laugh to see if they would.” And on his first day as Home Secretary, Sajid Javid was stupid enough to do it.

Result:

The Tory Powerstance Workout Video – Featuring Sajid Javid [Image: The Agitator].

And:

“Ladies and gentlemen,” wrote Gary Barker, “I give you your new Home Secretary, Sajid Javid and your surviving (just) Prime Minister Theresa May.”

Worse than that, he used his first appearance in the Commons, in his new role, to promise to “do right by the Windrush Generation” – and then lied to everyone.

Responding to a question from Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott, on whether he would restore the protections that were taken from the Windrush migrants in the 2014 Immigration Act, he said: “No such protections have been removed. People who arrived pre-1973 – they have the absolute right to be here and that has not changed.”

Ms Abbott begs to differ. Refused the opportunity to respond in the House, she took to Twitter with this:

The Guardian report shows that a clause giving longstanding Commonwealth residents protection from enforced removal was taken off the statute book by the 2014 Act. The Home Office claims it was redundant – but who’d believe it?

Mr Javid also said that he disliked the term “hostile environment” as a description of Home Office policy relating to immigrants and would not be using the term – which shouldn’t be too hard, as the Home Office ditched it a while ago.

Instead, he said he preferred to talk about having a “compliant environment”.

Interesting word choice.

“Compliant” means “disposed to agree with others or obey rules, especially to an excessive degree; acquiescent; meeting or in accordance with rules or standards” [Boldings mine].

So Mr Javid wants to create an environment in which everybody slavishly obeys the rules he makes up – no matter what they may be.

Vile.

And what of the rules that are already in place – the really ugly, racist rules that mean thousands of people, including British citizens who have been unjustly accused of being illegal immigrants?

They remain in place. After a crippling scandal for the Tories, more innocents are being deported this week.

So the “hostile environment” is still in place, no matter what Mr Javid says.

That’s a series of lies racked up in his first Commons appearance.

Home Office employees are probably saying to each other: “Meet the new boss… Same as the old boss.”

Maybe, but as the title of the old Who song, from which that lyric is taken, states:

We won’t get fooled again.


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Rudd has gone; time to concentrate on Theresa May again

Amber Rudd may have resigned but Theresa May needs to go as well – she knew her Home Secretary was lying every step of the way through the Windrush deportation scandal.

The now-former Home Secretary quit after it became clear that she had written to prime minister Theresa May in January 2017, promising to increase enforced removals by more than 10 per cent over the next few years.

This means that, when Ms Rudd lied to us all that there were no removal targets, Theresa May knew she was lying.

When Ms Rudd lied to us all that she had not been aware there were removal targets, Theresa May knew she was lying.

When both Ms Rudd and Mrs May said they were ending the forced deportation of the so-called Windrush Generation of immigrants from the Commonwealth who came to the UK and became citizens of this country from 1948 onwards, Theresa May knew they were lying.

The next plane of deportees – including at least one member of the Windrush Generation – leaves for Jamaica soon (at the time of writing).

Oh, and remember that Theresa May devised the racist policy that allows these deportations to take place.

Theresa May pushed it through Parliament.

Theresa May set the original deportation targets.

Theresa May allowed the policy to continue, despite hearing advice that it would harm UK citizens.

And Theresa May signed off the destruction of the Windrush landing papers that made it impossible for the Windrush Generation immigrants to prove they had a right to live in the UK.

So Owen Jones was absolutely right when he tweeted:

Don’t assume that, just because Ms Rudd has gone, Mrs May will tumble like the next domino in the line. Frankie Boyle had it right (be warned: this clip contains harsh language).

If anything is going to dislodge Theresa May’s vicelike grip on power, it’s the Windrush scandal. The Conservatives want you to think Amber Rudd’s departure should be the end of the matter, but you should not. Forgive the overused analogy, but Amber Rudd was just the monkey in this scenario.

Theresa May was the organ grinder.

Ian Dunt is absolutely correct.

And Tom Pride makes an excellent point here:

Theresa May is responsible for Windrush. She is allowing the policy to continue, despite having promised it would end. She allowed Amber Rudd to lie to us all, and she has lied herself – repeatedly.

So don’t let her off the hook.

It’s time she resigned as well.


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