Rishi Sunak discusses migration in Reykjavik speech
The Prime Minister said Strasbourg must start being « fair and transparent » after secret late night court rulings left deportation flights grounded.
And he vowed the government will « not rest until we stop the boats » as he met European leaders for a summit in Iceland.
Mr Sunak said the Rwanda deportation plan is « novel » and «ambitious » but does comply with the UK’s international obligations.
« We want to make sure the European court is always conducting itself in a way that is fair, that is effective, that is transparent, » he added.
Sunak told European judges to stop meddling in with Rwanda plans
The summit was the first event in a week of intense international diplomacy, with the Prime Minister today (WED) heading to Japan for the G7.
In Iceland last night, Mr Sunak insisted the UK has a « long track record » of leading reform linked to the European Court of Human Rights as he pushed for changes to rules that are holding back attempts to tackle illegal migration.
The Prime Minister has toughened up the Illegal Migration Bill currently before peers to give ministers the power to ignore interim “Rule 39” injunctions from the ECHR.
Mr Sunak wants the rule changed so there is greater accountability following behind closed doors rulings that go against UK government policy.
In talks with the President of the European Court of Human Rights, Siofra O’Leary, he called for changes to Rule 39 interim rulings. He also warned the Strasbourg chief that the need to tackle illegal migration is not just a UK problem.
« The Prime Minister and court president discussed the importance of protecting human rights, democracy and the rule of law throughout Europe, » a Downing Street spokesman said.
« The Prime Minister stressed the need to ensure all of Europe is working together to uphold these values and tackle the challenges we face, including illegal migration. »
Mr Sunak made tackling the small boats crisis one of his top five priorities for government. But the number of illegal migrants making the Channel crossing this year is expected to top 50,000.
Net migration figures, meanwhile, are tipped to near one million and Downing Street has to refused to put a date or number on when either figure will fall or by how much.
Home Secretary Suella Braverman’s bill to stop illegal migration includes powers to send asylum seekers who arrive in Britain without permission can be sent home or to a third country such as Rwanda.
Cabinet minister Michael Gove admitted yesterday (TUES) that high migration levels has put pressure on housing and public services. He said Ms Braverman’s reforms, which include ignore some Strasbourg rulings, are the « right » approach.
Speaking at the National Conservatism conference in London, he said: "If we are looking at pressure on housing, you need to look at it in the round.
Britain has always been a country that has benefited from people coming here fleeing persecution, but the numbers recently have been at a level where there’s an inevitable pressure on housing and on public services.
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