The second batch of so-called ‘foreign national offenders’ consisting of seven Zimbabwean deportees from the United Kingdom arrived in the country on Thursday taking the total to 21.
The seven, convicted of several crimes including murder, rape, robbery among others, regarded as Foreign National Offenders, arrived at Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport aboard a Boeing 767.
The returnees were taken to the Zimbabwe Institute of Public Administration and Management (ZIPAM) for quarantine. Last month, UK Home Secretary Priti Patel said the British government was deporting people who have been recognised as Foreign National Offenders and posing a threat to its communities.
“My key objective is to protect the public. It is longstanding Government policy to deport Foreign National Offenders to keep our communities safe and since January 2019 we have deported 7,985 foreign criminals from the UK.
“Deportation of foreign criminals is subject to several exceptions, including where doing so would be a breach of a person’s European Convention on Human Rights or the UK’s convention under the Refugee Convention,” she said.
Patel added that all those being deported would have been provided with an opportunity to raise claims including asylum and human rights claims, prior to their deportation citing that those
individuals could only be returned when the Home Office and, where applicable, the courts deem it is safe to do so.
“By definition, they do not need protection and are not at risk in return. Each individual assessment is made against the background of the latest available country of origin information and relevant case law.”
Patel said they were “unapologetic about the need to protect victims and remove dangerous foreign national offenders who have caused harm in the streets of the United Kingdom.”