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THE first refugees facing a one-way trip to Rwanda will not be deported until at least June 6, trade unions and campaigners revealed today.
The Public and Commercial Services Union, Care4Calais and Detention Action said that the Home Office had confirmed that there would be no deportation flights for the next two weeks, but it remains unclear when the first removals will take place.
The news came in a response to a second pre-legal action letter from the organisations, which have pledged to resist Tory Home Secretary Priti Patel’s plans to send asylum-seekers arriving in Britain via “irregular routes” to the African country.
Last week, the government reported that 50 people seeking asylum had been issued with notices of intent, stating that the Home Office was considering whether to deem their asylum claims inadmissible and line them up for deportation.
Ms Patel is still refusing to publish the criteria used to determine who is eligible for removal to Rwanda, the groups pointed out.
The widely condemned policy, which ministers claim will deter migrants from attempting dangerous crossings of the English Channel in small boats, has been branded morally repugnant, unworkable and prohibitively expensive amid the worsening cost-of-living crisis.
The plan, announced last month, also aims to please the Tory Party faithful and distract from the “partygate” scandal which is rocking Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s administration, Labour leftwingers have argued.
Many people at risk of deportation are believed to be held in immigration detention centres across England, including Yarl’s Wood, Colnbrook, Harmondsworth and Brook House.
Industrial reporter @TrinderMatt
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