Jeremy Corbyn reprimanded in Commons after angrily slamming Rwanda immigration plan

The former Labour leader questioned whether refugees deserve a sense of humanity

Published Last updated

Jeremy Corbyn was reprimanded by Home Secretary Priti Patel in a fiery debate on immigration.

The former Labour leader reacted angrily to the Rwanda plan and questioned its humanity.

He said: "Isn't the moral requirement for the Home Secretary to explain why she will deport people who've arrived in this country fleeing from desperate wars famine and problems and prepared to risk all to cross a dangerous sea.

"Don't they deserve a sense of humanity from the Home Secretary?

"Not to be deported to incarceration in Rwanda?"

Jeremy Corbyn
Jeremy Corbyn

She said: ""I refer to the tone the right honourable gentleman is using to our partners in Rwanda I think quite frankly is questionable

"France is a safe country alongside many of the EU member states that those that are travelling to the United Kingdom through illegally and dangerous crossings where their lives are put at risk which is what we are trying to stop.

"They could and should claim asylum in those countries first of all."

Ms Patel said some of the tone used to describe the UK’s partnership with Rwanda is “quite xenophobic”.

The Home Secretary added: “I think if I can refer to some of the undercurrents of the tone that has been used not just in this House today, but more broadly, around our partnership with Rwanda…

Home Secretary Priti Patel makes a statement in the House of Commons in London
Home Secretary Priti Patel makes a statement in the House of Commons in London

"Now, I could go as far to say that some of this is quite xenophobic.”

Ms Patel also said "change is needed because people are dying attempting to come to the UK”, outlining rising costs and abuses of the system and saying British taxpayers have “had enough”.

She continued: “This partnership is the type of international co-operation needed to make the global immigration system fairer, keep people safe, and give them opportunities to flourish. This will help break the people smugglers’ business model and prevent the loss of life, while ensuring protection for those who are genuinely vulnerable.

“This Government is delivering the first comprehensive overhaul of the asylum system and this type of illegal migration in decades. At the heart of this approach is fairness. Access to the UK’s asylum system must be based on need, not the ability to pay people smugglers.

“And the demand on the current system, the cost to British taxpayers and the scandalous abuses are increasing. The British public have rightly had enough. Our new plan for immigration will improve and support those directly fleeing oppression, persecution and tyranny through safe and legal routes.

“It will deter illegal and dangerous routes of entry to the UK, make it easier to remove those with no right to be in the UK, and provide a common sense approach to controlling immigration both legal and illegal.”