Shropshire Star

Shrewsbury MP says he will not back Government's Rwanda plan for asylum seekers

A Shropshire MP says he will not support the Government over plans to send asylum seekers to Rwanda.

Daniel Kawczynski MP

Shrewsbury & Atcham Conservative Daniel Kawczynski spoke in Parliament to tell the Home Secretary, Suella Braverman, of his concerns over tensions between Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The UK Government wants to send asylum seekers to Rwanda, but has faced a series of legal challenges over the controversial plan.

The High Court has ruled that the plan is legal, but the proposal is subject to appeal.

Questioning the Home Secretary in the House of Commons, the Shrewsbury MP said: “I support the Home Secretary in what is a very difficult task ahead of her, but I disagree with her on her comments on Rwanda.

“There are legitimate concerns about this country, and people in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, in Kinshasa, claim that Rwanda is funding a terrorist organisation, the M23, which is destabilising north-east Congo and resulting in the deaths of many Congolese citizens.

“I would very much like the Home Secretary to recognise that, and explain to the House, in conjunction with the Foreign Office, to ensure that this unacceptable behaviour by Rwanda to Congo is stopped.”

Responding, the Home Secretary said she stood by the proposals, but did not directly address Mr Kawczynski's concerns.

She said: "Having visited Rwanda very recently and having met some of the migrants that have been resettled successfully in Rwanda from countries in the region, I have confidence in our scheme with Rwanda for the resettlement of asylum seekers and other migrants.

"They have a strong track record of supporting resettlement, but most importantly our partnership has been exhaustively tested in the High Court and it has been found to be lawful and compliant with international law.

"We’re now waiting for the judgment in the Court of Appeal and we will review their decision when it emerges."

Speaking following the exchange Mr Kawczynski said he could not support the Government if his concerns were not addressed.

He said: "Where I part company with the Government is in its decision to send them to Rwanda, as long as there are serious allegations about the conduct of Rwanda to its neighbours, particularly the Democratic Republic of Congo."

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