More than 1,000 migrants arrive in UK in 10 days after Channel crossings

Migrants trying to enter borders by boat

More than 1,000 migrants arrived in the UK in 10 days after crossing the Channel in small boats.

According to analysis by the PA news agency, 1,004 migrants were brought ashore by Border Force between August 4th and 13th.

This takes the total so far this year to at least 4,511, more than double the amount thought to have crossed during the whole of 2019.

The UK Home Office confirmed that on Thursday, 89 migrants who made the crossing in five boats were brought to the UK, as well as 48 who arrived in four boats on Friday.

The news comes after UK Immigration Minister, Chris Philp promised a “new, comprehensive action plan” to stem the latest surge in crossings after talks with French officials in Paris on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) responded to the Home Office’s formal request for help by sending in RAF planes.

Three have been sent up into the skies above the Channel this week so far to carry out surveillance and help the coastguard and Border Force spot emerging crossing attempts.

British Defence Secretary Ben Wallace initially authorised the use of the Atlas A-400M on Monday and since approved flights by a Shadow R1 on Tuesday and Thursday while a P-8 Poseidon was enlisted on Wednesday.

The costs of the operations and decisions on whether to provide any other support are still being finalised, the MoD said.

It comes after Calais mayor Natacha Bouchart described sending in the navy to French broadcasters as a “declaration of maritime war”.

In the UK, Home Secretary Priti Patel last year pledged that the migrant crossings would be an “infrequent phenomenon” by now and has since insisted she is working to make the route “completely unviable”.

Earlier this week she reportedly told Tory MPs the asylum system was “broken” as she promised to bring forward legal reforms while she claimed laws were being exploited by “leftie Labour-supporting lawyers” who were trying to frustrate Government efforts to deport people.

But human rights campaigners and lawyers hit back at the comments, saying they were simply doing their job upholding the rule of law.

Charities have repeatedly insisted that efforts by the UK Government to provide those seeking asylum of a safe and legal route of doing so before boarding a boat on the Channel would stop the crossings in their tracks.

Bella Sankey, director of Detention Action, accused Ms Patel of “playing politics with people’s lives” as the crossings continue, particularly as many boats include several children some of whom are too young to walk.

She said: “The mishandling of this situation continues and now the Home Secretary is nakedly playing politics with people’s lives and the UK’s proud tradition of providing refugee protection.”

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.