Judge Swift on Friday rejected an emergency restraining order issued by campaigners at London’s Royal Court of Justice, saying there was “material public interest” in allowing flights to proceed while the judiciary was reviewing the “balance of comfort”.
The first flight scheduled to depart from the UK on Tuesday is to take refugees to Rwanda as part of the Home Office’s controversial plan to process asylum seekers across the East African country.
The plan is under judicial review in the Royal Courts, and its legal verdict is expected in late July.
The government aims to prevent asylum seekers from crossing the English Channel by moving them to Rwanda. Home Office lawyers told the court that the project should not be stopped by legal challenges in the public interest.
Human rights groups Care4Calais and Detention Action, the Union of Public and Business Services (PCS), a union representing civil servants in the UK Home Office, and four asylum seekers are facing deportation to Rwanda. They called for a halt to the flight, saying UK Home Secretary Priti Patel’s policy was “illegal on a number of grounds”.