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First 50 UK asylum seekers to be sent to Rwanda by end of May
Representative image-Migrants

A UK government spokesperson said on Thursday (May 19), Rwanda expects the first group of 50 asylum seekers to be transferred from the United Kingdom by the end of May.

In April the British government announced plans to send people seeking asylum to the East African country, but earlier this month said it expected lawyers to lodge claims to prevent their removal.

Rwanda’s deputy government spokesman Alain Mukurarinda said: “According to the information we have, the first batch of migrants will arrive by the Ayend of the month, but... it is the British government that knows how many will come and when they will come."

The policy targets migrants who entered the country after January 1, 2022.

Both London and Kigali have defended the deal, saying that the arrangement is necessary to deter human trafficking

Earlier, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said in an interview with a local daily that 50 people who had arrived illegally in the country after crossing the Channel had been informed that they would be flown to Rwanda.

The deal has been the subject of intense criticism by charities, refugee rights organisations and activists.

UK Home Secretary Priti Patel has defended plans to send unauthorised asylum seekers on a one-way trip to Rwanda, saying critics of the scheme have failed to offer any alternative solution to the migration crisis.

UK-Rwanda asylum seekers deal faces first legal challenge

Both London and Kigali have defended the deal as a humane solution to global migration challenges. They also say that the arrangement is necessary to deter human trafficking.

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