French police have come under intense criticism for watching masses of migrants leave Calais ‘undisputed’ after several people successfully made the perilous journey across the English Channel on Saturday.
At least 40 migrants, including a baby less than a month old, were picked up off the coast of a small boat crossing off the coast of Dungeness, Kent today.
Eyewitnesses reported seeing increased activity from mid-morning, when the lifeboat arrived ashore at about 1 p.m. 14.00.
French officials are said to be launching an investigation after armed police officers were accused of standing next to and watching dozens of migrants leave Calais this week
Armed French police officers (left) look 100 meters away, while dozens of migrants (right) begin their perilous journey across the English Channel in Calais, France
Among those who survived the perilous journey was a 16-day-old girl from Iraq who was pictured on the rocky beach rocked in white blankets in the arms of a Border Police officer.
It comes as footage released on Sky News this week showed migrants leaving Calais unharmed by armed police – in what is likely to be a new blow to Anglo-French conditions.
Dozens of people were seen jumping in inflatable rafts, dinghies – and even a canoe – in their desperate attempt to cross the English Channel, with French security ‘standing and watching’.
Less than three months ago, Britain agreed to give France an extra £ 54 million in an attempt to curb the record-breaking number of migrant landings.
At an annual conference in Tory earlier this week, Interior Minister Priti Patel described France as a ‘safe country’ and reiterated his desire to ‘return the boats’.
After evading French security at first light, the migrants piled into dinghies and spent nine hours crossing the English Channel before being picked up by immigration officers this afternoon.
A 16-day-old girl from Iraq is pictured on the banks of the Dungeness, Kent after being rescued by border forces
An RNLI lifeboat carries about 40 migrants ashore at Dungeness in Kent after a successful crossing of a small boat in the English Channel
After evading French security at first light, the migrants piled into dinghies and spent nine hours crossing the English Channel before being picked up by British immigration officers this afternoon
Reckless human traffickers have taken advantage of the warm start to October, with a recent rise in successful crossings reported across Kent last week.
But Sky News has reported that French security ‘stood and watched’ on chaos scenes unfold from less than 100 meters away instead of intervening.
A group of about 10 officers were reportedly inactive when two separate groups of migrants piled on inflatable boats that took up to 10 minutes to get their engines started.
The home office blew £ 6,757 in a month at Domino’s in Dover for migrants who had crossed the canal
The Home Office spent £ 6,757 in a month on Domino’s pizzas to feed migrants who arrived in the UK after crossing the canal from France, figures show.
Hundreds of pizzas were purchased from the Dover branch of the fast food chain in July, according to an analysis of government spending.
An information log for Home Office shopping card transactions, which cost more than £ 500 over the four-week period, contained five separate items from UK Immigration Enforcement for such food orders, totaling £ 6,757.
Takeaways were provided while migrants were in Tug Haven – a short-lived facility in Dover where they were first taken from the beach or sea.
The most expensive entry – £ 1,824 – said: ‘This was an urgent need to feed a large number of migrants who had been on the Tug Haven link in Dover for over 12 hours and were likely to stay over 24 hours due to problems there. blocked their movement with resources and Irc (immigration removal center) property. ‘
A £ 1,789 entry said: ‘Purchased by the Clandestine Operational Response Team (Cort) for use in Tug Haven, where we have migrants arriving on small boats. Due to the large number of migrants who arrived and the time they had not eaten, it was agreed to buy 200 pizzas. ‘
It happened as several cruises were underway Friday, with at least six boats arriving at Walmer and St Margaret’s in Cliffe, Kent, according to eyewitness reports.
In a later clip, a helicopter flown by French border control over the Dover Strait looks at how another caravan of migrants is making the treacherous journey.
French officials are said to be investigating patrol efforts at the French border in the wake of the footage, Sky News reports.
Since the beginning of the year, more than 17,000 migrants have managed to reach the UK – double the number for the whole of 2020.
Dan O’Mahoney, Commander of the Secret Channel Threat of the Border Force, said: ‘The government is determined to tackle the unacceptable increase in dangerous canal crossings using all the tools at our disposal at every stage of the journey.
‘In collaboration with police and international partners, there have been almost 300 arrests this year, 65 convictions related to small boat crime, and our targeted efforts have prevented more than 13,500 migrant attempts.
‘But this is a complicated issue that requires changes to our laws.
‘The government’s new immigration plan provides a long-term solution to rectify the broken system and deliver the change needed to tackle criminal gangs and prevent further loss of people.’
It happens after September was the busiest month ever, with Dover receiving four times the amount of migrants compared to September 2020.
Official statistics showed that more than 3,872 have arrived at 113 incidents in the last month – breaking the 3,509 who made the dangerous journey in 117 boats in July.
And officers have now detained at least 17,228 migrants crossing the English Channel in small boats so far this year, more than double the record number who made the treacherous crossing throughout 2020.
The home office has been contacted for comment.
In 2020, a total of 8,410 were detained in small boat incidents.
Last year, inspectors found that migrants ‘almost always’ arrived wet and cold and then ‘often had to spend hours outdoors or in cramped containers’.
This comes a few days after Interior Minister Priti Patel at the Conservative Party’s conference pledged to reduce the number of channel crossings.
She said: ‘The shocking images of people crammed into flimsy boats, exploited by human traffickers, evil criminals, marked by ruthlessness and greed that even threatened to drown small children just to pocket their pockets.
‘This can not go on, that’s why we are going after the criminals behind this dangerous trade in human trafficking.’