Rwanda rules out reimbursing UK for funds already paid for controversial deportation plan

Rwanda rules out reimbursing UK for funds already paid for controversial deportation plan

Kigali stresses that “the contract does not provide for a refund” and says that Rwanda has so far fulfilled its part

10 Jul. (EUROPA PRESS) –

The Rwandan government has indicated that it will not reimburse the United Kingdom for the more than 240 million pounds (about 284 million euros) given to Kigali by London since 2022 within the framework of the controversial agreement for the deportation of asylum seekers who have entered the European country illegally.

Rwandan government deputy spokesman Alain Mukuralinda said that the country’s authorities would not reimburse these funds in the event of the cancellation of the agreement and stressed that Kigali had fulfilled its part, including the financial aspects related to the preparations for the reception of these people.

The minister has said that “the contract does not include a refund of the money,” after the new British Prime Minister, the Labour Party’s Keir Starmer, announced that he would close the controversial agreement, promoted by his predecessor, Rishi Sunak, according to the Rwandan RBA.

“We had an agreement. Both parties signed it. It became an international agreement. We started implementing it. If after that, you want to leave, good luck,” Mukuralinda stressed, reiterating that Kigali has complied with all the clauses of the pact to date.

The UK is said to have given Rwanda at least £240m as part of the deal, according to a document released by the British government in April this year. However, Starmer said on Saturday during his first press conference after Labour’s victory at the polls that the controversial plan was “dead and buried”.

“The Rwanda plan was dead and buried before it started. It has never been a deterrent,” he said, stressing that he was “not prepared to continue with schemes that serve to deter no one.” Sunak argued that the deportation plan would change the minds of the hundreds of migrants trying to enter the UK, especially via the dangerous English Channel route.

In December 2023, the United Kingdom and Rwanda signed a treaty with which Sunak hoped to resolve the doubts that led the British Supreme Court to annul the previous deportation plan, one of the great ‘Tory’ promises to combat the migratory surge, given the increase in arrivals during 2024.

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