Nearly 1,000 Illegal Boat Migrants Land in Britain in Just Four Days

A group of migrants prepare to disembark from a UK Border Force boat at the port of Dover having being picked up crossing the English Channel from France on April 15, 2022, at Dover, on the south-east coast of England. - Britain will send migrants and asylum seekers who cross …
DANIEL LEAL/AFP via Getty Images

Calm seas and warm weather conditions have seen nearly 1,000 illegal boat migrants cross the English Channel since the weekend, with another 300 arriving on Tuesday as the Rwanda scheme continues to fail to act as a deterrent.

So far this year, over 8,500 illegals have reached the UK via the waterway, after over 600 landed over the weekend and around another 300 arriving on Tuesday, The Telegraph reported.

The rate at which boat migrants have successfully reached the UK is nearly double the previous record at this time of year in 2021 when 3,112 arrived, and over six times the record set before that in 2020 when 1,340 landed, according to calculations from the Daily Mail.

The upswing in the number of migrants landing in May has been seen as confirmation by some that the government’s stated intention of sending illegal boat migrants to the East African nation of Rwanda has failed to act as a deterrent to those waiting in camps in Calais and other coastal regions of France.

Although the first batch of migrants in Britain have reportedly been notified that they will be sent to Rwanda, the scheme has yet to be put in place in earnest, with not a single plane taking off as of the time of reporting.

However, Lucy Moreton, of the Immigration Service Union, noted that many of the migrants may have already paid their fee to the people-smuggler gangs and therefore have nothing to lose but to try to gain entry into Britain.

She went on to say that the gangs are likely also trying to exploit the “window” before the Rwanda plan is put into place, stating: “It is a business… What they want is to get as many people to use their services. They will say anything or do anything in order to achieve that.”

The local Conservative MP for Dover — the main landing area of illegal boat migrants in Britain — Nathalie Elphicke said that she believed once the planes began sending migrants to Rwanda, the deterrent effect will kick in.

“What is certainly being heard is that the people-smugglers are now communicating that the window to cross may close,” Elphicke said. “That does mean the deterrent effect and the determination to go ahead with the policy is being clearly communicated to them.”

Others have been more doubtful, however, including Brexit leader Nigel Farage, who reiterated on Monday that the plan to send migrants to Rwanda will face significant legal challenges due to the UK still being bound by the European Court on Human Right (ECHR) as the body is outside of the European Union and therefore Britain’s membership was unaffected by Brexit.

Mr Farage said that the migrant crisis, which he predicted will see 100,000 illegals land this year, will become a “massive political problem” for the government.

Follow Kurt Zindulka on Twitter here @KurtZindulka

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