ECHR blocks UK plan to deport Iraqi asylum seeker to Rwanda

Court steps in in case of Iraqi national, preventing deportation until 3 weeks after end of judicial review due in July.

ECHR blocks UK plan to deport Iraqi asylum seeker to Rwanda

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) issued an urgent order Tuesday preventing the removal of an Iraqi asylum seeker hours before his scheduled deportation from the UK to Rwanda

Invoking Rule 39 of its Rules of Court, the ECHR indicated to the UK government to not deport the Iraqi national “until three weeks after the delivery of the final domestic decision in his ongoing judicial review proceedings.”

The Court stepped in to block the deportation of the Iraqi after the British High Court rejected his appeal for interim relief to prevent his deportation. He had claimed asylum in the UK on May 17.

Under a controversial asylum partnership agreement between the UK and Rwanda, all asylum seekers whose claims are rejected or deemed inadmissible could be relocated to Rwanda.

The individual, who is reportedly a victim of torture, had claimed his life was in danger in Iraq and had left the country for Türkiye, from where he reached the UK after crossing the English Channel by boat. On May 24, the British authorities rejected his asylum claim as “inadmissible” and served a “notice of intent” to relocate him to Rwanda.

The Court noted the risk to the human rights of the Iraqi national in Rwanda, a country outside the jurisdiction of the European Convention on Human Rights, while granting the interim measure to prevent his removal from the UK until the decision of the domestic courts. The Iraqi national’s judicial review is scheduled in July. 

The ECHR is a regional human rights judicial body based in Strasbourg, France, created under the auspices of the Council of Europe. 

It has 47 judges to oversee and protect the human rights of people from the 47 member states that have ratified the European Convention of Human Rights.

Hüseyin Demir