The French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin has called for a migration agreement between the EU and Great Britain. This should also settle the refugee dispute between Paris and London. Darmanin said on Sunday that a European treaty would be in favor of solving the problems of asylum applications, deportations and family reunification. The project will be on the timetable of the French EU Council Presidency, which starts on January 1st.
British ships rescued or apprehended more than 1,100 migrants in two days while trying to cross the English Channel into Great Britain. According to the Ministry of the Interior, a total of 624 migrants were picked up in 23 missions on Friday, and 491 people in 17 missions on Saturday. During the same period, the French authorities reportedly prevented 414 migrants from crossing to Great Britain.
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According to a count by the British news agency PA, more than 17,000 migrants have managed to cross to Great Britain since the beginning of the year. That is more than twice as many as in all of 2020. The number of people who reached the English coast this year was already over 13,000, according to the BBC. According to the British Home Office, 8,417 people were counted in the entire past year 2020.
The increasing number of migrants crossing the English Channel in small boats has led to growing tensions between London and Paris after Britain left the EU earlier this year.
France’s Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin called on Saturday to start negotiations on a migration agreement between the European Union and Great Britain. This is necessary because the issue was not regulated in the Brexit agreement, said Darmanin during a visit to the French North Sea coast. France will put the issue on the agenda for its EU Council Presidency from January.
The French minister also urged the UK government to “keep its promise” and provide funding to combat smugglers on the French coast. As part of an agreement made in July, Great Britain had agreed to finance border security in France with 62.7 million euros this year and next.
A few weeks ago, the British Home Secretary Priti Patel indicated that the funds could also be withheld if France did not more decisively prevent the smugglers from casting off. Darmanin had visited Loon-Plage and Marck on the French coast on Saturday, where migrants try to cross the English Channel every day to get to England. (dpa, AFP)