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First migrant flight to Rwanda scuppered after legal challenge


Under exceptional laws introduced by Home Secretary Priti Patel, illegal migrants that crossed the Channel into Britain will be sent to Rwanda in a £120m plan.

Critics of the plan have questioned the huge financial burden of the scheme, with others raising concerns over human rights. Now, a charity has intervened and scuppered plans for the first flight leaving for the African nation.

The Home Office agreed to hold any flights to remove migrants to Rwanda until after June 6 following “pre-action” letters sent this week by the charities claiming the policy breaches the refugee convention and human rights law.

The charities – Care4Calais and Detention Action – and the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union are understood to be preparing legal claims both by individual migrants and against the broader policy.

Fifty migrants were informed by the Government last week of the intention to send them to Rwanda on the first chartered flight.

Under regulations, the notice gave them 14 days to present any representations, before a five day mandatory detention period prior to their departure.

At least eight of the 50 are understood to have been contacted by the charities with the offer of legal support.