July 22, 2024

Britain’s Supreme Court will rule on Wednesday whether the government’s contentious policy to deport asylum seekers to Rwanda is lawful, in a pivotal moment for the ruling Conservative Party during an already turbulent week.

The Rwanda policy was first announced in April 2022 by Prime Minister Boris Johnson, as he attempted to make good on a Brexit campaign promise to “take back control” of the country’s borders.

The hard-line policy has since been pursued by Mr. Johnson’s successors, Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak, with each repeating his original untested argument that the threat of being deported to Rwanda would deter the tens of thousands of people who try to cross the English Channel in small boats each year.

But it has been widely criticized by rights groups and opposition politicians from the start, with many pointing to Rwanda’s troubled record on human rights. And to date no one has been sent to the small East African nation, because of a series of legal challenges.

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