Ukraine’s president urges EU leaders to make good on their arms promises

British Labor leader hits back after PM Sunak’s taunt about ‘Ayatollah and dealings with Taliban’.

LONDON: Labor leader Keir Starmer hit back after British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak accused him of planning to “sit down with Iran’s Ayatollah” and strike a “deal with the Taliban” on return deals in a bid to clear the UK’s backlog of asylum claims. .

During a televised debate on Wednesday, the Tory leader rejected his election rival’s argument that he would seek to move asylum seekers to safe countries or return them to their home countries, adding that many had come to the UK from Iran, Syria and Afghanistan.

“Is he going to sit down with the Iranian Ayatollah? Will you try to make a deal with the Taliban? It’s completely pointless; you think people are stupid,” Sunak said on the BBC’s Leaders’ Debate.

As part of his election campaign, Starmer said he wanted to negotiate return deals as part of an effort to address the country’s chronic backlog of asylum claims, which has been exacerbated by recent legislation introduced by the Conservatives that does not allow asylum applications to be processed. while deportations to Rwanda are suspended.

“There are things that are not reasonable for the asylum policy. It was an unnecessary comment from the Prime Minister himself, who had no answer to this question,” Starmer said on Thursday.

“But leaving these claims unprocessed is not the answer.” Of course, there will be countries, like Afghanistan, where you can’t return people—people who may have helped us by interpreting for our soldiers in Afghanistan and put themselves at risk; people who in my constituency fled the war in Afghanistan and found that we are not going to get them out on these flights. Of course, in connection with their specific cases, they will not be returned to Afghanistan.

“However, we cannot remain in this absurd situation where there is more and more for which the prime minister has absolutely no answer. It is absurd and reckless,” he added.

Polls predicted Starmer was on course to win the July 4 election with a large majority, ending 14 years of Conservative rule. The Labor leader and Sunak have met in several debates or public meetings with voters in recent weeks about who is better suited to lead the country.

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