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UK's Rwanda Asylum Plan: Timeline of Legal Challenges and Setbacks (2022-2023)

In April 2022, then-Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced plans for the UK government to process asylum seekers in Rwanda, insisting it would be a significant deterrent and that Rwanda was safe with the capacity to resettle many people.
The cost included an initial payment of £120m.

However, in June 2022, the first flight taking asylum seekers from the UK to Rwanda was cancelled at the last minute due to injunctions from the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

In October 2022, then-Home Secretary Suella Braverman publicly expressed her desire to see illegal immigrants deported to Rwanda, with a front-page headline in The Telegraph.

In March 2023, Braverman introduced the Illegal Migration Bill, which became law in July 2023.

The bill required the home secretary to detain and remove illegal immigrants to Rwanda or another "safe" third country, and prevented those detained from seeking bail or judicial review for the first 28 days.

It is believed that seven individuals were onboard a plane intended for this purpose.

On November 15, the UK Supreme Court ruled that the government's Rwanda refugee policy is unlawful.

Five judges agreed with a lower court ruling that the government had not adequately assessed the safety of Rwanda.

The judges expressed concerns that refugees deported to Rwanda could face wrongful claim assessments or persecution in their country of origin.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced that the government would work on a new treaty with Rwanda and was willing to change UK law in response to the ruling.
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