THE Government has dramatically switched attention away from the partygate discussions about the Prime Minister’s future by launching an extreme policy to send asylum seekers 4,250 miles to Rwanda.

If it was a diversionary tactic, it worked well. It reminded voters that uncontrolled immigration was one of the big drivers of the Brexit vote, it makes the Government look as if it is tackling the problem, and it drew out all the hand-wringing liberals to oppose it.

Many people will see that this could alter the dynamic that drives immigrants to risk their lives in the hope of landing amid the milk and honey of Britain. If they learn they are likely to end up in Rwanda, they will be less inclined to take that risk.

But does that make the policy right?

It does look heartless of Britain to be exporting our problems to one of the poorest countries on the planet which has a dubious recent human rights record. Rwanda may welcome our money today, but will it be able to create a coherent society tomorrow if it has thousands of disillusioned young men dropped in its midst?

Surely it would be better to have an immigration force that works in this country – that rapidly, and humanely, assesses applications and then equally rapidly removes those who fail. That would also send an important message to illegal immigrants thinking of risking the crossing, and it might enable us to develop a border system that could rapidly assess the applications of Ukrainians, because the Home Office’s reaction to that immigration crisis has been, frankly, embarrassing.