June 17, 2024

Denmark wants to send asylum seekers to Rwanda |  Current Europe |  DW

Denmark wants to send asylum seekers to Rwanda | Current Europe | DW

Denmark is pushing ahead with plans to send asylum seekers to Rwanda in Africa. The governments of the two countries agreed to a political declaration underlining their desire to further strengthen cooperation on asylum and migration issues.

Denmark’s Foreigners and Immigration Ministry said both countries consider the current asylum system to be dysfunctional. New solutions are needed. This includes a joint effort to set up a mechanism for the transfer of asylum seekers from Denmark to Rwanda.

A majority in Denmark’s parliament passed legislation in June 2021 that would make asylum centers in other countries possible. This allows authorities to fly asylum seekers to third countries, where they have to wait for their application to be considered in Denmark. The EU Commission criticized the plan and made it clear at the time that it reserved the right to take legal action if the plans were implemented.

In the UK, an extradition flight to Rwanda was halted by a court in June

British Asylum Agreement with Rwanda

Great Britain is also pursuing projects with Rwanda. The High Court in London is currently reviewing Britain’s controversial asylum deal with the East African country. The agreement provides for those who have entered the UK illegally, regardless of their origin and asylum application, to be flown to Rwanda. They should be given an opportunity to apply for asylum there.

If they are eligible for asylum, they must stay in Rwanda. Otherwise they will be deported to their home countries. The United Nations Refugee Agency considers the program a violation of international law. England’s bishops speak of “shame to Great Britain”. A number of asylum seeker and refugee organizations have sued the British government over its actions.

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It is designed to stop people from trying to enter the UK illegally. So far, however, not a single migrant has been sent to Rwanda: most recently, a flight scheduled for June was canceled at short notice following a ruling by the European Court of Human Rights. New British Prime Minister Liz Truss, then Foreign Secretary and running for Prime Minister, promised to stick to the plans.

uh/kle (dpa, afp)