From the blog

GHANA: Foreign Ministry Distances Nation From UK’s Asylum Seekers Hosting

The Ghanaian foreign ministry has publicly rebuffed the UK Ghanaian government’s proposal to host asylum seekers pending processing as referenced in a leaked “Operation Red Meat” proposal to save the British PM’s job.

Reports leaked to the media suggested the Government would seek to “offshore” asylum seekers to Ghana and Rwanda. 

The official Twitter account for Ghana’s foreign ministry sent out the blunt rebuke later om Tuesday, in which it claimed the UK Government had not been in touch about the plans. It also stated the plans would be opposed by the Ghanaian government.

The statement said: “It has come to the attention of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration that UK newspapers this morning reported details of a document dubbed ‘Operation Dead Meat’ [sic], which contains, among others, a measure supposedly being drawn up by UK authorities to ‘send migrants to countries such as Rwanda and Ghana for processing and resettlement’. 

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration wishes to state categorically that Ghana has not engaged with the UK on any such plan and does not intend to consider any such operation in the future.”

Under the proposals, a rear admiral would direct the Border Force, coastguard, fisheries protection and customs and excise to keep track of and “intercept” those crossing the Channel.

The policy is viewed as being part of “Operation Red Meat” – a raft of big policies thought to be designed to distract attention from the Prime Minister’s ‘party gate’ scandal and potential impending resignation. 

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CANADA: Trudeau Backs Quebec Tax On Unvaccinated Residents

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says “incentives and strong measures” have worked in the fight against COVID-19, in a nod to Quebec’s proposed tax on unvaccinated residents.

“As we’ve said, incentives and strong measures, whether it’s vaccine passports, whether it’s requirements for travellers, whether it’s the requirement for public servants to be fully vaccinated, we have taken very strong measures in the past and they have worked in terms of keeping Canadians safe,” he said.

“We will continue to look and work with the provinces and look at measures put forward.”

Quebec announced on Tuesday that it will introduce a financial penalty in the coming weeks for those refusing to get the jab as the health-care system there continues to feel the strain of mounting COVID-19 cases.

Premier François Legault said $50 or $100 wouldn’t be “significant” enough for him.

Trudeau said the province assured the federal government that the key principle of the Canada Health Act – that everyone has equal access to health care without financial or other barriers – would be respected.

The federal government announced in August it would require vaccination in the federal workforce and the federally regulated transportation sector.

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