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Great Britain closes illegal migration route across the English Channel

London - The UK Home Secretary Priti Patel (Conservative) has instructed the British Coast Guard not to allow immigrants to come ashore via the English Channel. As The Guardian reported, the instruction obliges the coast guards to force migrants' boats to turn back at sea. The plans to close the English Channel had been worked out by the Ministry of the Interior for two years.

While last year 8,400 refugees came across the strait according to the BBC, this year there are already 13,500. This week alone, 1,500 people reached the UK mainland. The British newspaper The Sun is now talking of a "canal crisis".

France is critical of Great Britain's measure
The Interior Minister met her French counterpart Gerald Darmanin on Wednesday to discuss the situation on the English Channel. However, it was not possible to agree on a common solution. Patel then wrote on Twitter : "I held constructive talks with French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin on tackling illegal migration across the Channel. I made clear that delivering results and stopping crossings were an absolute priority for the British people."

The French side assessed the planned rejections in the strait, however, critically. In a letter on Wednesday, the French interior minister said, according to the BBC, that the protection of human life took precedence over national sensitivities. He warned that the British government must also comply with international law of the sea.

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