UK PM Boris Johnson calls for action with France over migrant crossings

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"We want to stop that, working with the French, make sure that they understand that this isn't a good idea, this is a very bad and stupid and risky and criminal thing to do". "They're usually carrying too much, their boats are generally badly equipped. they don't always have life vests". Many were navigating one of the world's busiest shipping routes in overloaded rubber dinghies.

A dinghy and life-jackets, believed to have been taken from migrants picked up from boats in the Channel by UK Border Force officers, arrive in the harbour, in the port of Dover, on the south-east coast of England on 9 August 2020.

U.K. Home Secretary Priti Patel appointed a former Royal Marine commando, Dan O'Mahoney, as "clandestine Channel threat commander" to try and make unauthorized sea crossings "unviable".

At the same time, the Royal Air Force (RAF) dispatched a plane to survey the Channel after the flight was authorised by Defence Secretary Ben Wallace.

As numbers of migrants attempting the perilous sea journey continue to rise, the Government has been accused of being "increasingly chaotic" in its handling of the crisis.

The numbers crossing the Channel are tiny compared with the flows of people who try and reach European Union countries such as Malta, Greece, Italy and Spain every year by crossing the Mediterranean from north Africa or Turkey, thousands of them dying on the way.

"We are working to make this route unviable and arresting the criminals facilitating these crossings and making sure they are brought to justice", said Patel.

From there, they can apply for asylum and after which they will be given accommodation funded by the government until their legal case has been decided.

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Meanwhile Calais MP Pierre-Henri Dumont also criticised the prime minister's response.

United Kingdom ministers are meanwhile considering the deployment of British Navy vessels to block small boats scrambling to enter the nation's waters under plans to stem the number of migrants crossing from Calais to Dover, The Times reported. He said French authorities were already trying to do "whatever we can" to intercept crossings.

This comes despite Home Secretary Priti Patel's vow a year ago that the crossings would have become an "infrequent phenomenon" by now. The Home Office has refused to confirm the number of children arriving.

The Home Office has said the Royal Navy could be brought in and there has been talk of copying Australia's controversial policy of physically pushing back migrant boats. But the objective of the flight is so far unclear.

"Seeking asylum is not a crime, and it is legitimate that people have to cross borders to do so".

Bella Sankey, director of charity Detention Action, told PA: "Behind these record statistics are human beings - men, women and children - with heartbreaking stories of persecution and desperation".

"It's also a unsafe route, there's real risk to life for those coming across, it's obviously a form of illegal immigration, it's not the right way to come to the United Kingdom".

The government must stop talking tough and start thinking smart. He said: "Policing borders is always a shared responsibility between two nation states and I think the discussions we had today were in exactly that spirit".

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