UK to take 'most vulnerable' refugees from Rwanda under deal, says scheme's negotiator

12 June 2022, 16:52 | Updated: 12 June 2022, 16:56

By Tim Dodd

The UK "stands ready" to receive "vulnerable refugee populations" from Rwanda if they can't be accommodated appropriately there, as part of its obligations under the countries' deal, says Rwanda’s lead legal negotiator Doris Uwicyeza Picard.

On Friday the high court in London heard that 31 people were due on the first flight on Tuesday, with the Home Office planning to schedule more this year.

Prince Charles is said to be "more than disappointed" by the Government's policy, with reports that he privately described the move as "appalling".

Up to 130 people have been notified that they could be removed from the UK under Priti Patel's new policy to send migrants to Rwanda in a bid to curb channel crossings. 

Doris Uwicyeza Picard is Chief Technical Advisor to the Rwandan Minister of Justice and the country's lead legal negotiator for the partnership. She told Swarbrick on Sunday:

"This commitment is a reflection of our shared responsibilities in relocating the most vulnerable from our country to theirs [the UK].

"The particularities of this understanding have not yet been detailed out... If we have vulnerable refugee populations that can only be accommodated appropriately in the UK, we will work in partnership with the UK to accommodate these vulnerable populations."

Read more: Prince Charles 'slams Rwanda migrant plan' as High Court rules first flight can go ahead

Tom asked: "Does that number have a limit or not?"

Ms Picard said that the UK's responsibility to take some refugees from Rwanda was "only for these very isolated and extreme cases".

"Under this partnership, we are getting substantial investment that will benefit all migrants and all refugees in Rwanda, which means that all those vulnerabilities will be addressed under this investment partnership that we have with the UK," she said.

"This will significantly lower the need to have these vulnerabilities catered for elsewhere."

Ms Picard that those sent to the UK for protection would be admitted subject to the UK's "approval, at their own discretion".

Read more: Archbishop condemns 'ungodly' Rwanda asylum scheme as Home Office concerns made public

More Tom Swarbrick

See more More Tom Swarbrick

'Boris Johnson is Boris Johnson': Minister defends PM after pledge not to change

'Boris Johnson is Boris Johnson': Minister defends PM after pledge not to change

Swarbrick On Sunday 18/07

Swarbrick On Sunday 26/6 | Watch again

RMT boss declares rail strikes are 'absolutely' a class struggle

RMT boss declares rail strikes are 'absolutely' a class struggle

RMT general secretary Mick Lynch defended the union's strike action this week.

Train strikes until Xmas! Millions face travel misery as rail unions demand 7% pay hike

Worst 'yet to come' for food price rises that could last over a year - Ex-Sainsbury's CEO

Worst 'yet to come' for food price rises that could last over a year - Ex-Sainsbury's CEO

Swarbrick On Sunday 18/07

Swarbrick On Sunday 19/6 | Watch again

RMT general secretary Mick Lynch defended the union's strike action this week.

Rail workers demand 7% raise as union 'gunning' for strike set to bring misery to millions

Swarbrick On Sunday 18/07

Swarbrick On Sunday 12/6 | Watch again

Jailed geologist's 15-year prison term is 'worse than a death sentence', say son-in-law

Geologist's 15-year prison term in Iraq 'worse than death sentence', says son-in-law

Queen could block Boris Johnson calling General Election, expert tells LBC

Queen could block Boris Johnson calling General Election, expert tells LBC

Sadiq Khan: Platinum Jubilee is the 'catalyst' for English economic recovery

Sadiq Khan: Platinum Jubilee is the 'catalyst' for English economic recovery

'The City of London is a major drain on productive economic activity in Britain'

'The City of London is a major drain on productive economic activity in Britain'

Swarbrick On Sunday 18/07

Swarbrick On Sunday 29/05 | Watch again

'Nonsense' to suggest Brexit to blame for surge in inflation, says Dr Liam Fox

'Nonsense' to suggest Brexit to blame for surge in inflation, says Tory MP

Turkey could block Sweden and Finland from joining NATO claims Erdogan ally

Turkey could block Sweden and Finland from joining NATO, claims ex-Erdogan aide

Kwasi Kwarteng said people look at British buildings and “make a judgement” on “our standing in the world”

'We project world standing': Minister defends Govt plans to buy '£20m New York partyhouse'