Migrants, Including Children and Pregnant Woman, Continue Risky Channel Crossings

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Despite the dangerous Channel crossing from France to England, scores of migrants, including children and a pregnant woman, arrived on England’s south coast on Wednesday. These arrivals highlight the ongoing challenge of irregular migration across the Channel, with at least six lives lost in a recent incident. Around 100 individuals arrived at Dover, having been intercepted by UK Border Force patrol vessels, while dozens more, including young children, were brought ashore on lifeboats at Dungeness, approximately 25 miles west of Dover.

The recent tragic incident involved an inflatable vessel sinking in the Channel, leading to the deaths of six Afghan men and the rescue of others. Both France and the UK have attributed these crossings to criminal gangs involved in human trafficking, while also facing criticism for their handling of the situation.

The UK government’s policies have been particularly scrutinized. They have implemented measures to prevent arrivals from claiming asylum and have proposed deporting migrants to Rwanda. However, these plans are facing legal challenges. Furthermore, there have been concerns about housing migrants on a barge off the coast and similar sites.

Since 2018, over 100,000 migrants have crossed the Channel on small boats from France to southeast England, resulting in a significant backlog in the UK’s asylum system. The dangerous nature of these crossings has led to capsizes and drownings over the years.

The UK government acknowledges that the high number of people risking their lives during these dangerous crossings is placing an “unprecedented strain” on the country’s asylum system. Stopping the boats remains a priority for authorities, with efforts aimed at curbing irregular migration across the Channel.

SOURCE: Ref Image from Arab News

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