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France limits Britain’s contribution to “minimum” to stop English Channel immigrants


France has criticized the United Kingdom’s “minimal” contribution to preventing migrants from crossing the Canal after the recent devastating tragedy.

Ahead of talks with Priti Patel, Home Secretary Gerald Darmanin called for closer cooperation as he warned that smugglers were preparing desperate asylum seekers with “Ed Dorado” for jobs and benefits in the UK.

Other French politicians condemned Britain for failing to establish formal routes for asylum, and for making it so easy to obtain work and housing upon arrival. There have also been allegations that “mafia bosses” involved in people smuggling were living in “beautiful villas” in London.

The harsh criticism came as Immigration Minister Kevin Foster made clear the UK was ready to increase the £54m funding already pledged to support France in managing its borders.

In a round of interviews, Mr Foster reiterated that personnel and helicopters were also available to help tackle the growing problems on the coast – although President Emmanuel Macron has so far scuttled the idea of ​​joint patrols on French soil.

More people making the perilous journey across the canal have been brought ashore in the UK after the bloodiest day in the current migrant crisis.

A group in lifejackets and draped in blankets is seen huddled together on an RNLI lifeboat before disembarking in Dover this morning, just a day after a boat capsized off the coast of Calais, killing dozens of lives.

Patel is due to update MPs on the situation in a statement to the House of Commons at a later time.

A group of people believed to be immigrants have been brought to Dover, Kent, by RNLI, after a small boat accident in the Channel after 27 people died yesterday

Kevin Foster

Gerald Darmanen

Ahead of talks with Priti Patel, Home Secretary Gerald Darmanin called for closer cooperation as he warned that smugglers were preparing desperate asylum seekers with “Ed Dorado” for jobs and benefits in the UK.

Darmanin told French radio network RTL that the smugglers are ‘criminals’, people who take advantage of the misery of others, women and children – there were pregnant women and children who died yesterday on that boat… They promised a few thousand euros. Theirs is the Eldorado of England.

“Unfortunately, this has been repeated every day for the past 20 years,” he said.

Darmanin also called for “more police officers, more cameras, and more resources in general” to be devoted to the issue.

He noted the “vibrant discussions at times” with Ms Patel about the UK’s support for France, which “remains negligible compared to the resources we have”.

Noting that more help was on the table, Mr Foster said: “The first thing is to work with France.

We’ve provided the resources, and are happy to support their ashore operations.

We’ve already agreed £54 million, and we’re excited to be looking forward to doing more.

We’re also willing to provide resources beyond (that) – like yesterday, we deployed a helicopter at their request to assist in the search and rescue operation, so we’re not just giving money. It is not in anyone’s interest for this to continue.

“We are ready to provide support on the ground, we are ready to provide the resources, we are ready to provide the people, literally, to go out there and help the French authorities,” Mr. Foster added.

The head of the Calais and Boulogne ports, Jean-Marc Boisisso, told BBC Breakfast that the “enormous problem” of illegal immigration through the canal could only be solved through the UK working with European authorities.

It’s a huge problem. It’s been 20 years since we’ve had immigrants coming to Calais with only one desire – to come to your country.

It is really time for us to try together Europe and the UK together to solve the problem.

The Calais MP said calls for increased patrols on France’s beaches are a “crazy solution” to the migrant crisis.

Pierre-Henri Dumont told BBC Breakfast: ‘I think it’s time for both governments to stop blaming each other and try to talk to each other and find real solutions, not a crazy solution like having more and more people on patrol, and sending the British army to the French beach.

“This is unacceptable and will not change anything.”

When asked what to do, he said that migrants should be allowed to apply for asylum while outside the UK, but that finding work or housing upon arrival should be “more difficult”.

The MP added: “What I can confirm is that more money or more police officers patrolling the French beach will not change anything because we have 200-300 kilometers of shoreline for 24/7 monitoring.

“It takes smugglers only 5-10 minutes to get a boat and get them into the sea for migrants, and when it is too late for migrants in the UK, they will find a way to cross.”

Another French politician said the heads of human trafficking networks who live comfortable lives in the UK should be arrested.

“What are we doing in France? We arrest smugglers …

To fight them, there is only one way – we need to stop the organizations, and you need to arrest the mafia leaders.

And the mafia bosses live in London… They live in London in peace, in beautiful villas, and they earn hundreds of millions of euros every year, and they reinvest that money back in the city.

“So it’s very easy for the tax authorities to find them.”

Johnson spoke to Macron last night in the wake of the tragedy, with French officials saying pregnant women and children were among the dead.

Downing Street said the two men agreed to “keep all options on the table” in their efforts to dismantle the human trafficking rings responsible for endangering desperate people in one of the world’s busiest sea lanes.

A joint search and rescue operation between French and British authorities, which had begun after a fishing boat spotted people in the sea off France, was called off late on Wednesday.

Five women and a girl were said to be among the dead, while two survivors were taken to a French hospital. It was later reported that one of the dead women was pregnant.

Mr. Darmanin said the boat that sank was very flimsy, likening it to a “burst pool in your garden”.

He could not say the nationalities of the victims, but said the survivors were Somalis and Iraqis and had been treated for severe hypothermia.

The French authorities arrested five suspected traffickers in connection with the incident, while the regional public prosecutor opened an investigation into the aggravated premeditated murder.

After the emergency committee meeting in Cobra, Johnson said it was clear that French operations to stop migrant boats from leaving ‘were not enough’ despite the UK’s £54m support, adding that smugglers ‘virtually get away with it’ ‘. killing’.

Mr Johnson said the government would seek to “accelerate” procedures in the Citizenship and Borders Bill to enable authorities to “distinguish between people who come here legally and people who come here illegally”.

However, Calais Mayor Natacha Bouchard said the British were to blame, and called on Mr Johnson to “face his responsibilities”.

The British government is responsible. And I think Boris Johnson, over the past year and a half, has cynically chosen to blame France.

27 people drowned off Calais yesterday afternoon, sparking a war of words between Britain and France

27 people drowned off Calais yesterday afternoon, sparking a war of words between Britain and France

Prime Minister Boris Johnson

French President Emmanuel Macron

Boris Johnson (left) told Emmanuel Macron (today in Zagreb) that British boots are needed on the ground in France to prevent vicious gangs of slaves from ‘getting away with murder’ after at least 27 migrants drowned in the deadliest Channel crossing ever.



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