Lawyer representing Rwanda deportees reports 'suicidal ideations' over flight

18 June 2022, 17:28 | Updated: 18 June 2022, 17:33

By Tim Dodd

Immigration solicitor Qays Sediqi, who represented two of the refugees on board the government's blocked flight to Rwanda, tells LBC one his clients has experienced "suicidal ideations" over the prospect of his deportation.

It comes after the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) on Tuesday granted an injunction that resulted in a chartered aircraft to Kigali being unable to depart Wiltshire under the government's plans for migrants to be given a one-way ticket to Rwanda in a bid to curb Channel crossings.

Mr Sediqi told the story of one of his clients who was on the cancelled flight.

"He was a political supporter in Iran. He had to flee the country because he was ambushed by the Iranian authorities," he said.

"So he fled to Turkey, exchanged by traffickers, and [they] extorted him for money - and his family.

"He was tortured by those people, and demanded $10,000. He was forced to watch videos of people's ears being cut off and various other methods of torture."

Mr Sediqi said that after almost drowning on a boat to Italy, the UN intervened and took his client to Greece where he was mistreated further, and spent several nights sleeping on a beach with no blankets and little food.

After eventually reaching France, traffickers told him he'd be travelling through a "safe route" to the UK.

Read more: 'Kick these b*****ds into touch': Tory fury at Euro judges for Rwanda flight block

Prior to the Rwanda flight, Mr Sediqi said his client was "already a very troubled individual, and someone who had been through a lot, and clearly suffered from PTSD".

"This sort of idea of even being removed to Rwanda was horrible for him and he was having suicidal ideations because of that," he said.

"Because he said he has no connection to the country whatsoever, and he wouldn't know what to do if he were to be returned to Rwanda.

"So he was absolutely appalled by the policy itself, but then frightened of what he was going to be doing in Rwanda".

Read more: Boris refuses to rule out leaving European human rights treaty after Rwanda fight