What is the latest for the Rwanda plan and how are people reacting?

What is the latest for the Rwanda plan and how are people reacting?
Suella Braverman says High Court ruling ‘thoroughly vindicates’ Rwanda plan

The Government’s Rwanda policy has been ruled lawful by the High Court, but it added that Number 10 did not “properly consider the circumstances” of some asylum seekers selected for deportation.

It follows months of controversy surrounding the policy, which sets out that illegal immigrants or asylum seekers will be flown to Rwanda to be processed, asylum and resettlement.

The policy was first announced by Priti Patel in April, and Lord Justice Lewis said it had been the “subject of considerable public debate” in that time.

“The role of the court however is only to ensure that the law is properly understood and observed and that the rights guaranteed by parliament are respected,” he added.

Judges overturned eight removal decisions and ordering it to reconsider those cases during the ruling on Monday (December 19).

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A group of claimants was represented by Raza Husain QC, who indicated that the ruling might be appealed in future. Any applications for permission to appeal will be considered at a hearing on 16 January, while individual cases may still go to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

Braverman called the scheme "humane and practical"Leon Neal/Getty Images

Making a statement in the Commons, home secretary Suella Braverman said the Rwanda policy is a "humane" and "practical alternative" for those who come to the UK through "dangerous, illegal and unnecessary routes".

"Being relocated to Rwanda is not a punishment, but an innovative way of addressing a major problem to redress the imbalance between illegal and legal migration routes," she told MPs.

"It will also ensure that those in genuine need of international protection are provided with it in Rwanda. It is a humane and practical alternative for those who come here through dangerous, illegal and unnecessary routes. By making it clear that they cannot expect to stay in the UK, we will deter more people from coming here and make such routes unviable."

The home secretary also said the policy would “deter more people” despite small boat arrivals rocketing to new records since it was announced in April.

The ruling has sparked a huge reaction. As The Independent’s Sean O’Grady wrote: “The Rwanda scheme has already involved an upfront payment of £120m and at the moment is able to house around 100 people at once and process the claims of up to 500 occupants per year. That’s about a few days’ worth of arrivals via small boats (the record for one day being about 700 people). It is absurdly costly and cumbersome, as well as cruel.”

The news also sparked discussion on social media as people spoke out against the ruling.

Home Secretary Braverman said in a statement: “Our ground-breaking Migration Partnership with Rwanda will provide individuals relocated with support to build new lives there, while disrupting the business model of people smuggling gangs putting lives at risk through dangerous and illegal small boat crossings.

“We have always maintained that this policy is lawful and the Court has upheld this.

“I am committed to making this Partnership work – my focus remains on moving ahead with the policy as soon as possible and we stand ready to defend against any further legal challenge.”

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