Rwanda Supreme Court ruling in full – read every word of 56-page document

Rishi Sunak was dealt a major blow in his bid to end the Channel migrant crisis today as the Rwanda scheme was ruled unlawful.

The Supreme Court concluded migrants were at risk of being sent to their home countries.

In a bombshell ruling, Lord Reed said: “The changes needed to eliminate the risk of refoulement may be delivered in the future, but they have not been shown to be in place now.

“The Home Secretary’s appeal is therefore dismissed.”

Expulsion flights to Kigali will stay grounded despite the UK handing over more than £140 million for a policy that has been stalled during more than a year of legal challenges.

The Prime Minister insisted on Wednesday that his Government has spent the “last few months planning for all eventualities” as he comes under huge pressure to set out a Plan B.

In the summary of the Supreme Court ruling, Lord Reed said the evidence of the UN Refugee Agency, the UNHCR, “raises a serious question” as to whether commitments given by Rwanda in its deal with the UK Government “can be relied on”.

The UNHCR said there were “systemic defects in Rwanda’s procedures and institutions for processing asylum claims”, Lord Reed said, which included concerns about “the lack of legal representation, the risk that judges and lawyers will not act independently of the government in politically sensitive cases, and the fact that the right of appeal to the High Court, which has existed in theory since 2018, has never in fact been exercised”.

The UN Refugee Agency also said Rwanda had a “100% rate of rejection of asylum claims from countries in known conflict zones from which asylum seekers removed from the UK may well come, such as Syria, Yemen and Afghanistan, although the UK authorities often find that such cl

The judge said the UNHCR gave “over 100 examples” of Rwanda sending refugees back to their countries of origin and had argued that the Rwandan government had an “apparent misunderstanding of its obligations under the Refugee Convention”.

Lord Reed added that the UNHCR has given evidence over Rwanda’s “failure” to fulfil a “similar” agreement with Israel over the removal of asylum seekers, with some people being “routinely moved clandestinely to a neighbouring country from which they were liable to be returned to where they came from and face bad treatment.


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