THE Scottish Conservatives have voted in favour of the UK Government’s proposed Illegal Migration Bill despite the Home Secretary being unable to confirm whether the legislation is compatible with the European Convention on Human Rights.

If passed, everyone coming to the UK via a so-called “irregular route” – i.e. crossing the Channel in a small boat – would have their asylum claim dismissed as “inadmissible”.

They would then be detained for 28 days before being sent back to their home country or a “safe third country” (such as Rwanda) if that is not possible.

However, on the first page of the proposed bill the government had to concede that it may not comply with European human rights regulations.

During the second reading of the legislation at Westminster on Monday evening, hundreds gathered on Parliament Square to protest – including leader of the SNP at Westminster Stephen Flynn.

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Although some Tory backbenchers expressed concerns – such as whether it would result in the deportation of children – MPs voted to progress the bill with a majority of 62.

They included the five Scottish Conservative MPs in attendance: Andrew Bowie, David Duguid, Alister Jack, John Lamont and party leader Douglas Ross.

David Mundell, the Scottish Conservative MP for Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale, did not cast a vote.

When approached by The National, a spokesperson for Mundell said: “David is in Nepal with the International Development Committee. Had he been present, he would have voted with the Government.”

The National:

It comes after a court of appeal judge in England ruled that a group of asylum seekers could bring a legal challenge to the Home Office over claims it failed to consider the potential risks of deporting them to Rwanda.

Ten asylum seekers from a range of countries including Syria, Iraq and Iran are involved in the case. All have been threatened with deportation to Rwanda.