Human rights lawyer tells Nigel Farage UK 'may have to bring back' migrants from Rwanda

Geoffrey Robertson QC told Nigel Farage that despite the policy making it through the Royal Courts of Justice and Court of Appeal, the Rwanda plan isn't yet legal

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A British-Australian QC has warned migrants sent to Rwanda may have to be brought back to Britain, if the Government's policy is found to breach international law.

"If they do fly and the policy is declared illegal, we may have to bring them back," Geoffrey Robertson QC told Nigel Farage.

The founder and joint head of Doughty Street Chambers also noted that the Government's deportation policy, designed to curb Channel migrant crossings, hasn't been ruled as legal in the UK.

Jeremy Corbyn and demonstrators protest outside the Home Office in London against plans to send migrants to Rwanda and demand the Government cancels the first scheduled flight on Tuesday.
Jeremy Corbyn and demonstrators protest outside the Home Office in London against plans to send migrants to Rwanda and demand the Government cancels the first scheduled flight on Tuesday.

"On Friday, a judge said it was inconvenient to stop the flight and today the Court of Appeal said there was no reason to overturn him," he said.

"The full decision, the full hearing on whether this policy is legal or not under international law will be heard in a few weeks' time."

The 75-year-old barrister took aim at the Government for failing to put the Rwanda plan to Parliamentary vote.

"It is utterly about democracy and if this Government had the gumption to put this plan to Parliament, then Parliament could have passed a law which would be entirely judge-proof because Parliament runs Britain, not the judges, not the people, it's Parliament."

Senior Church of England bishops, including the archbishops of Canterbury and York, have criticised the plan for lacking morality.

A letter to The Times to be published on Tuesday, signed by the Most Rev Justin Welby and the Most Rev Stephen Cottrell, says: “Whether or not the first deportation flight leaves Britain today for Rwanda, this policy should shame us as a nation.”

It goes on: “The shame is our own, because our Christian heritage should inspire us to treat asylum seekers with compassion, fairness and justice, as we have for centuries.”

It reportedly goes on to say vulnerable people should be offered safe routes to the UK and not deported.

It adds: “This immoral policy shames Britain.”