The UK will give more taxpayers’ money to France to stop a wave of migrants following a surge in attempted illegal crossings, according to French officials.
Though the Home Office has not confirmed how much would be handed over to ensure continued security in the region, operations at Eurotunnel terminals and ports in Coquelles, Calais, and Dunkirk alone could cost up to £80 million, reports The Times.
Last week, Home Secretary Amber Rudd met with the Minister of the Interior of France, Gérard Collomb, in London to discuss the border. A Home Office spokesman later confirmed that the UK will “work closely with the French authorities at all levels to reduce migrant pressures”.
During the French election campaign in Spring 2017, then-candidate Emmanuel Macron threatened to set Calais migrants loose on Britain by tearing up the Le Touquet treaty which allows British police to perform border checks and stop migrants in Calais.
However, it would appear that Paris is pushing for ‘reform’ of the treaty, according to interior ministry sources, in exchange for the UK paying for tighter security.
According to French officials, since 2015 the UK had given France £124 million.
In August, Breitbart London reported that in 2016 there were a total of 56,000 illegal migrant interceptions on Britain’s borders from French ports and terminals – an average of 153 a day.
The main focus for illegal migration was at one time the Jungle migrant camp in the coastal city of Calais, which at its height had 10,000 migrants staying there waiting to cross the Channel to Britain. However, The Times notes that the camp’s demolition in October 2016 has not led to a reduction in attempted illegal crossings – but that the number has increased.
Additionally, another migrant hub has opened up in Ouistreham, Normandy, after an influx of illegal migrants from Africa, the Middle East, Pakistan, and Albania arrived in the town, dubbed the “new Calais”, before trying to cross the Channel.
Whilst there are plans to hand more money to France, defence and border experts have warned that the UK’s maritime borders have been rendered “porous” after “successive governments have dismantled the layered mosaic of border security” which once protected Britain’s coast, leaving the country vulnerable not only to illegal migration, but also Islamist terrorists entering the country via these unsecured routes.
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) January 5, 2017
In August, officials warned of a new ‘back door’ illegal migration route opening and a wave of asylum seekers boating to the UK after evidence was found pointing to an “Iranian trafficking network” operating along the route from France, with the chief inspector of borders and immigration, David Bolt, slamming the UK’s weak coastal border patrols and port security.
The lengths illegal immigrants will go to smuggle themselves onto vehicles at the port city poses a risk to British travellers and lorry drivers, with one Czech lorry driver passing through Calais narrowly escaping death when migrants hurled a wooden stake through his windscreen before attacking his vehicle.
The first driver death caused by migrants occurred in June when a Polish lorry driver died after crashing into two other vehicles that had to make emergency stops because migrants had put tree trunks on the road.