Despite Rwanda threat, migrants dream of England

STORY: Migrants in this camp near the French port of Calais still hope to reach England, despite the risk of being deported to Rwanda under a new British government scheme.

Britain has agreed with Rwanda to send migrants who cross the English Channel illegally to the African country.

The first British flight carrying asylum seekers was due to leave on Tuesday but it was blocked at the last minute by the European human rights court.

The UK government says the policy will go ahead.

It's supposed to deter people from making the trip, but Ahmed from Sudan, who declined to give his family name, is still desperate to go.

"For myself, if they take me back to Rwanda, I will feel that I'm a dead man, because everything, my ideas that I had in my mind, they have destroyed it."

Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Saturday called the EU court decision a "weird last-minute hiccup."

"But we're very confident in the legality, the lawfulness of what we are doing and we are going to pursue the policy."

Clare Moseley works for the Care4Calais charity, which has been lobbying the British government to change tack.

"It's a really brutal plan, after all they've gone through to get here and get to safety. The last thing they want is to be sent back to Africa. People we talked to were really frightened of it and I can't believe the UK government would do something like this, it's incredibly upsetting for us."

Aid groups estimate that hundreds of African and Middle Eastern migrants still want to make the perilous crossing.

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