The Home Secretary signed a memorandum with the Rwandan government, the terms of which would see refugees who arrive illegally in the UK shipped to east Africa.
The deal, worth £120million, sparked backlash from many MPs and human rights groups, with the Labour Party calling the move “unworkable” and “unethical”.
Defending the policy, Ms Patel said the scheme would “keep people safe” and allow them to “flourish”.
She said: “Change is needed because people are dying attempting to come to the UK on illegal and dangerous routes.”
She added: “This partnership is the type of international cooperation needed to make the global immigration system fairer, keep people safe and give them opportunities to flourish.”
Last year, the Danish government unveiled a partnership with Rwanda, and in June 2021, the Danish parliament passed a law set to enable the sending of asylum seekers to other locations outside the EU.
A Danish government spokesperson said last year: “If you apply for asylum in Denmark, you know that you will be sent back to a country outside Europe, and therefore we hope that people will stop seeking asylum in Denmark.”
Mattias Tesfaye, Danish Minister for Immigration and Integration, said that although no dotted lines have been signed, Denmark is now looking to emulate the UK’s agreement with Rwanda.
The minister backed the move as a way to break the chain of human trafficking, ahead of a parliament meeting next week.
Mr Tesfaye said in a statement: “A reform of the current asylum system is needed in order to break with the cynical business model of the human smugglers.”
More to follow…