ECONOMY

UK calls on France to work ‘constructively’ to tackle Channel crossings


T

he UK Government says it wants to work “constructively” with the French after nearly 4,000 people crossed the English Channel aboard small boats in the first two weeks of November.

Tensions with France already strained amid Brexit rows over fishing and Northern Ireland, have escalated in recent days after 1,185 people reached the UK in a single day last week.

French interior minister Gerald Darmanin has blamed Britain’s work market for enticing people to make the perilous crossing.

Meanwhile, young children were seen being carried ashore in Dover on Monday after more people risked death crossing the English Channel.

A toddler wrapped in a light blue hoodie looked around at border officials as he was carried in the arms of a woman.

The pair, possibly mother and child, were closely followed by an older child and a man after they and others were brought into the Kent port aboard a Border Force patrol boat.

A jet-ski thought to have been used in a migrant crossing is inspected by police officers following being brought in to Dungeness, Kent, by the RNLI after being intercepted in the Channel (Gareth Fuller/PA) / PA Wire

The new arrivals came amid reports that a jet-ski used to cross the Channel has been recovered at sea by the RNLI and towed ashore in Dungeness.

More than 23,500 people have now reached the UK after crossing the English Channel on board small boats this year, according to data compiled by the PA news agency.

More than 3,770 people succeeded in crossing to Britain in the first two weeks of November, PA data shows.

Home Secretary Priti Patel spoke to her French counterpart Mr Darmanin on Monday about the ongoing issue of Channel crossings.

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