Dozens of Tory MPs demand Rwanda legislation overrides human rights laws

The MPs will write that any legislation must be 'over-engineered' to head off any potential challenge in the courts, ITV News' Deputy Political Editor Anushka Asthana reports

Dozens of Conservative MPs are planning to send a letter to the prime minister demanding that his "emergency legislation", aimed at unblocking the Rwanda scheme, be protected from human rights legislation.

ITV News understands that members of the New Conservatives group - which is open to Tory MPs elected to Parliament since Brexit - plan to make three demands of Rishi Sunak.

Firstly, they want so-called "not-withstanding" clauses - which would enable the legislation to override other legal requirements - for example around human rights.

They also want the legislation to actively dis-apply the Human Rights Act - to prevent it being challenged in court.

And they want the government to block "pyjama injunctions"- which is when judges issue court orders to block flights at the last moment - and in the middle of the night.

The MPs will write that any legislation must be "over-engineered" to head off any potential challenge in the courts.

Sources said that many MPs on the right of the party felt that Mr Sunak had gone further than expected but remained sceptical about the timeline plans - fearing the legislation could face challenge in the Lords and courts - meaning no plane will take off before the next election.

The new Home Secretary James Cleverly told me that the government's plan was to listen carefully to what the judges said yesterday - and "make sure our Rwanda plan is completely lawful, addressing points of concern".

He said the government had worked intensively with Rwanda to improve its asylum system - and that people who failed in their claims would be able to remain there - to remove the risk of "refoulement" - when a refugee is returned to their country of origin.

Asked if he was willing to leave the European Convention on Human Rights - if the new legislation faced challenge there - he said - "we don't envisage that will be necessary", repeatedly avoiding saying that he was prepared to take that extra step.

Home secretary tells ITV News he is 'absolutely determined' to see Rwanda deportations

Mr Cleverly said he was "absolutely determined" to get flights off to Rwanda by the Spring but would not guarantee it happening. And he didn't deny criticising the policy previously.

He said he liked Suella Braverman - his predecessor - but disagreed with her letter accusing the PM of lying to her.

He said the British people wanted asylum seekers to come via safe routes - but Mr Cleverly repeatedly failed to explain how someone from a country like Sudan - a country without an official scheme - could come legally.

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