News Update


A migrant boat sinks in the English Channel, killing six people.

Two persons may still be missing, according to a spokesman for the French coastal authority Premar, after the yacht became stranded in the water near Calais in the early hours of Saturday.

According to authorities, 58 persons were rescued by British and French coastguards.

A number of people were observed being carried off a lifeboat at Dover, some on stretchers.

The degree of the injuries is unknown, and the exact number of those rescued has altered since the morning as additional information has become available.

According to AFP, the six victims killed were Afghan males in their 30s, according to Philippe Sabatier, deputy public prosecutor for the French seaside city of Boulogne.

He stated that those rescued included several youngsters and were largely from Afghanistan, however some Sudanese were there.

According to French officials, a passing ship first reported that an overcrowded boat was in trouble off the coast of Sangatte.

When the French lifeboat arrived, they saw individuals in the water, some of whom were shouting for aid.

The rescue attempt was joined by the Dover lifeboat, which was already in the Channel dealing with another boat transporting migrants.

According to one of the volunteer rescuers, migrants were using shoes to bail water out of the sinking boat.

Anne Thorel stated that there were “too many” persons on board.

“Some were suffering from sea sickness, and the boats are simply overloaded… [and] can no longer move forward,” claimed another French rescuer, Jean-Pierre Finot.

Rescue personnel say they have had to remove individuals from the ocean seven times this week, prompting suspicions that the smugglers organizing the crossings are using a faulty batch of boats.

How many people use tiny boats to cross the Channel?
Since 2018, 100,000 migrants have crossed the Channel.
According to the most recent information, French investigators believe 65 or 66 individuals were on the boat based on interviews with survivors. Boats are frequently so overcrowded that it is difficult to know how many people are on board.

Premar stated that 22 or 23 persons were brought to Dover by UK rescue forces, while 36 were transferred to Calais by a French boat.

Two French boats were still searching for the two passengers who were possibly still missing, according to the report.

A French Navy plane and a chopper have been dispatched to assist in the search.

According to Pierre-Henri Dumont, MP for Calais, officials are interrogating migrants who are able to communicate and are not too ill to determine what occurred and where they are from.

Despite the fact that the tragedy occurred on French soil, British and French rescue personnel collaborate to save as many people as possible.

A graphic comparing the region of the migrant boat hunt to the French and English shores.
The Refugee Council’s chief executive, Enver Solomon, hailed the rescues for their efforts but encouraged the UK government to concentrate on developing a “orderly and humane asylum system.”

With 600 tankers and 200 ferries traveling through it every day, the English Channel is one of the world’s most hazardous and busiest maritime waterways.

Suella Braverman, the Home Secretary, described the incident as a “tragic loss of life.”

The killings were “devastating,” according to a UK government official, and “our thoughts are with the victims’ families and friends at this time.”

“This incident is sadly another reminder of the extreme dangers of crossing the Channel in small boats, and how critical it is that we disrupt the people smugglers’ business model and stop the boats,” they continued.

Stretcher bearers hauled ashore at Dover IMAGE SOURCE, REUTERS
Caption for an image,
At Dover, people were observed being taken ashore on stretchers for medical attention.
Natalie Elphicke, MP for Dover, said the event underscored the importance of combined patrols along the French coast.

“These overcrowded and unseaworthy death traps should obviously not be allowed to leave the French coast in the first place,” she added.

Shadow immigration minister Stephen Kinnock called it a “appalling, deeply shocking tragedy” on X, previously known as Twitter.

Another tiny boat went into trouble on Saturday, but all on board were rescued, according to the UK Coastguard.

Meanwhile, during the day, migrants from other migrant boats that had completed successful crossings could be seen being carried ashore at Dover.

According to government estimates, nearly 1,000 migrants crossed the Channel to the UK in the previous two days. Since 2018, about 100,000 migrants have crossed in tiny boats.

In November 2021, at least 27 migrants perished after their boat capsized on its way to the UK from France, the largest documented number of deaths from a single occurrence.

In December 2022, four persons perished at sea while attempting to cross.

The incident comes as the UK government is under scrutiny over concerns over a Legionella outbreak aboard its new migrant barge, Bibby Stockholm, which is anchored in Portland Port, Dorset. After contamination was discovered in the water system, the first migrants to board the ship had to be evacuated.


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