Paris / London – After the ship accident in the English Channel with 27 deaths, the dispute between London and Paris over measures to curb illegal immigration in the Straits threatens to escalate.
France canceled a meeting with Great Britain on migration through the English Channel, shortly after British Prime Minister Boris Johnson via Twitter called for an agreement with France to receive the migrants.
The planned meeting of Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin with his British counterpart Priti Patel on Sunday will not take place, an Interior Ministry spokeswoman in Paris said on Friday. As planned, Darmanin will meet with representatives of the interior ministries of Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium on Sunday to discuss the situation in the English Channel. 27 people died there on Wednesday en route to Britain when their ship capsized.
Johnson had previously written in a letter calling for a refugee readmission agreement, among other measures. That could be the “biggest step” to destroy the business model of criminal gangs. Since the implementation of Brexit, Britain can no longer make use of a corresponding EU regulation on the return of asylum seekers.
In addition, Johnson’s letter to “dear Emmanuel” (French President Emmanuel Macron) posted on Twitter called for joint police patrols on French beaches, the use of technology such as sensors and radars, access to French territorial waters, aerial surveillance and cooperation. closer to the secret service.
Macron was not very satisfied. “Such things are not communicated between heads of state through tweets and published letters,” the French head of state said on Friday. He also doubted the seriousness of the British advance: “I am surprised by the method if it is not serious,” Macron continued. The real answer is “in serious cooperation to prevent these movements, to dismantle these smuggling networks, to prevent these women and men from reaching our country because it will be too late when they get there,” Macron continued.
The dispute over illegal crossings on the Canal de Arme is not the only point of contention between London and Paris. French fishermen had announced protests in the port of Calais and at the French entrance to the Eurotunnel for Friday. The background to this is a dispute that has been brewing for months over fishing licenses that have not been granted off the Channel Islands of Jersey and British Crown Guernsey after Brexit.
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