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Lords asks government to think again on Safety of Rwanda Bill

19 April 2024

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The Safety of Rwanda (Asylum and Immigration) Bill returned to the House of Lords for consideration of Commons amendments in ‘ping pong’, on Wednesday 17 April.

The aim of the Safety of Rwanda (Asylum and Immigration) Bill is to confirm Rwanda as a safe third country for the removal of people entering the UK under new immigration laws, and to deter migration by unsafe and illegal routes.

Consideration of amendments

The bill was considered by the House of Lords between 18 January and 12 March 2024 before returning to the House of Commons in a process known as parliamentary 'ping pong'. 

On Wednesday 17 April, members of the Lords considered changes (PDF) made to the bill by the Commons for a third time. Lords members voted to reinstate clauses removed by MPs on:

  • Exemptions for UK allies overseas.
  • Ratification of Rwanda as a safe country.

Catch up 

Explore further information

Find out more about the bill in the House of Lords Library briefing.

Next steps

The bill now returns to the House of Commons for further consideration of Lords changes on Monday 22 April.

If MPs return the bill to the House of Lords once more, it is expected that Lords members will discuss the bill again later that same day.

What's happened so far?

Consideration of amendments day two: Tuesday 16 April

On Tuesday 16 April, members of the Lords considered changes (PDF) made to the bill by MPs in the Commons. Lords members voted to make changes to the bill on:

  • Compliance with international and domestic laws on children, human rights and modern slavery.
  • Ratification of Rwanda as a safe country.
  • Decisions on individual claims regarding personal safety in Rwanda.
  • Exemptions for allies and employees of UK military overseas.

Catch up 

Consideration of amendments day one: Wednesday 20 March

Members of the Lords considered amendments (PDF) made to the bill by MPs in the House of Commons.

There were seven votes on proposed changes. Following this, Lords members returned the bill to the House of Commons for a second time.

Catch up 

Further consideration of Lords amendments took place in the House of Commons on Monday 15 April.

Third reading

A chance for members to ‘tidy up' the bill, making small changes to ensure it is effective, took place during third reading on Tuesday 12 March.

Report stage

Detailed scrutiny continued at report stage on Monday 4 and Wednesday 6 March.

Committee stage 

Line-by-line examination of the bill took place during committee stage on Monday 12, Wednesday 14 and Monday 19 February 2024. 

Second reading

Second reading, a full debate on the key principles of the bill, took place on Monday 29 January.

Image: Aboodi Vesakaran / Pexels

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