London – At its narrowest point, between Calais (France) and Dover (England), the width of the English Channel is only 34 kilometers. Many refugees here dare the life-threatening crossing in small boats.
A record number of more than 28,000 refugees arrived in the UK via the English Channel last year. This was the result of an analysis of government data by the British news agency PA. According to this, no less than 28,395 refugees arrived by boat to the British coast through the Channel. About three times more than in 2020.
The highest monthly number of boat refugees arriving in the UK via the English Channel was reached in November 2021 — in that month alone, at least 6,869 refugees arrived, according to the Palestinian Authority. The largest number of days was recorded on November 11 – on that day there were 1185 people.
When crossing the English Channel, refugees repeatedly find themselves in distress, many of whom have already died during the crossing. On November 24, at least 27 refugees drowned off the coast of northern France.
The large number of refugees traveling across the English Channel strains relations between Great Britain and France. The two sides bear each other the main responsibility for preventing dangerous crossings.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s government has submitted a bill to Parliament providing for tougher crackdown on people smugglers. Asylum seekers should also be able to be deported more easily.