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The UK postpones Rwanda bill to protect Afghan interpreters from deportation


Kabul: The UK government’s plan to relocate certain asylum seekers to Rwanda faces another hurdle as the House of Lords approved an amendment exempting individuals who collaborated with the UK military or government abroad, such as Afghan interpreters. This amendment, backed by peers in multiple votes, is consistently removed by the government in the Commons.

The bill aims to designate Rwanda as a safe destination, enabling the deportation of asylum seekers who arrive via small boats across the English Channel. UK Shadow Home Office minister Stephen Kinnock criticized sending Afghan allies to Rwanda, stressing the moral obligation and military logic behind the amendment proposed by Lord Browne.

UK Home Office minister Michael Tomlinson addressed concerns by acknowledging the commitment to combat veterans and mentioned the potential exemptions under Section four of the Illegal Migration Act. He also noted the ongoing review of the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy by the UK’s special forces.

Previously, senior military figures advocated for exempting those who served alongside British troops abroad from deportation to Rwanda, emphasizing their debt to these individuals.

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