Rishi Sunak has said he “will not allow foreign courts to block” deportation flights to Rwanda as he vowed to bring emergency legislation to Parliament.
The Prime Minister said his government was negotiating a new treaty with the East African nation which would “enable parliament to confirm that with our new treaty, Rwanda is safe”.
Speaking at a press conference in Downing Street after the Supreme Court ruled his government’s Rwanda deportation policy was unlawful, he said: “I’m also announcing today that we will take the extraordinary step of introducing emergency legislation.
“But… even once parliament has changed the law here at home, we could still face challenges from the European Court of Human Rights [ECHR] in Strasbourg.”
Sunak continued: “I will not allow a foreign court to block these flights if this transfer court chooses to intervene against the expressed wishes of Parliament.
“I am prepared to do what is necessary to get flights off. I will not take the easy way out.”
Judges unanimously ruled that the scheme, which has been beset with legal challenges since its inception under former Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s leadership in April 2022, cannot go ahead in its current form.
The Prime Minister told MPs ahead of PMQs this lunchtime that his government was already “working on” a treaty with Rwanda in a bid to address the Court’s concerns.
The ruling has stirred up further contention among an already fractious Tory party following a reshuffle on Monday which saw right-wing cabinet ministers, like Braverman, sacked in favour of more moderate Sunak allies, such as Laura Trott and Victoria Atkins.
James Cleverly, who replaced Braverman as home secretary, was seated front row at Sunak’s press conference.