Another Iranian Migrant Boat Arrives in Dover, French Claim Smuggling ‘Explosion’ Driven by Brexit

Migrant
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Eight more suspected illegal migrants have been picked up near the Kent coast, meaning almost 80 people have arrived during an “explosion” in sea crossing this month.

Her Majesty’s Coastguard contacted the Border Force after the latest migrant boat was sighted at about 7 a.m. on Friday morning, near Dover, and the boat was intercepted.

All eight on board were men and presented as Iranians, as have the vast majority of other recent boat arrivals.

A Coastguard spokesman told Kent Online: “We can confirm we are assisting Border Force with suspected migrant activity.”

Since November 9th, 78 migrants have been found on small boats, according to the Home Office.

On Thursday, fourteen suspected migrants were rescued from two dinghies off the Kent coast, officials revealed.

Each boat carried seven people, with the vessels combined bring a total of 13 men and one woman to the UK

All of the individuals presented themselves as Iranian, and have been transferred for interviews with immigration officials, and are suspected of illegal crossings.

The second group was rescued in the English Channel after shocked passengers on a passing ferry spotted them drifting in the busy shipping lane.

Earlier, French officials revealed 11 people were pulled from boats in the Channel as they tried to reach Britain.

Pascal Marconville, the state prosecutor in Boulogne-sur-Mer near Calais, claimed people-traffickers were encouraging the recent wave of crossings as they believe it will be more difficult after Brexit.

Marconville told The Times that gangs had introduced a Brexit surcharge on would-be migrants for the crossing, hiking fees by up to 30 percent.

Lieutenant Ingrid Parrot, from the French maritime law enforcement agency, added: “It’s not an increase [in attempted Channel crossings] that we are seeing, it’s an explosion.

“We have the impression that migrants are afraid that the border will be completely closed after Brexit and they will not be able to cross at all.

“Our fear is that there will be collisions, people injured in the sea and bodies washing up on beaches and we don’t want that to happen.”

MP for Dover Charlie Elphicke has warned the French authorities and the Home Office must “do more” to stop the surge in crossings seen in recent weeks.

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