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Kagame Says There are Limits to how Long an Asylum Deal with Britain can “Drag On”

Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame’s comments on Wednesday came before Rishi Sunak faced a potentially leadership-ending rebellion by Conservative MPs threatening to vote down his Rwanda deportation bill on Wednesday night. When asked about the money the UK had spent on the scheme, he said: “The money is going to be used on those people who will come. If they don’t come we can return the money.” About £240m had been paid to Rwanda so far as part of the deal, the UK government said last year, while a further payment of £50m was expected in the 2024-25 financial year. Two further payments are scheduled. A Rwandan government spokesperson had said last year there was no provision for refund as the money has already been allocated to a number of infrastructure projects. Asked if the UK would get its money back, the prime minister’s spokesperson said: “Our focus is on securing the progress of that bill through the house.”