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Massacre of migrants in the Channel, at least 31 drowned

2021-11-25T10:35:22.167Z

PARIS, 24 NOV - "The English Channel is turning into an open-air cemetery, like the Mediterranean". (HANDLE)



November 25, 11:08

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Massacre of migrants in the Channel, at least 31 drowned

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Migrants dead after boat sinks near Calais © ANSA

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Migrants dead after boat sinks near Calais © ANSA

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Migrants dead after boat sinks near Calais © ANSA

(ANSA) - ROME, NOV 25 - PARIS, NOV 24 - "The Channel is transforming itself into an open-air cemetery, like the Mediterranean". It is the alarm cry of the NGOs in the face of the death of at least 31 migrants in the sinking of a lucky boat that from Calais, in the north of France, was trying to reach England. Emmanuel Macron called the European ministers to gather by proclaiming that Paris "will not allow the Channel to become a cemetery". "It is a tragedy", in the words of the French Prime Minister Jean Castex, who has called an urgent meeting for tomorrow with the main ministers, while on the other side his counterpart Boris Johnsonsi is said "shocked, disgusted and saddened" and rejected responsibility for France, asking her to "do more" againstsurge in the flow of migrants to the UK.


   The massacre was caused by yet another desperate attempt to realize the English dream starting from the hell of Calais aboard what happens: barges, rafts, even canoes bought from Decathlon, the chain of sporting goods forced to take them off the shelves in the region. Among the dead, at least 31 were seen floating in the water by a fisherman, five women and a girl. It is the most tragic shipwreck since - in 2018 - going from France to Great Britain became an almost suicidal undertaking, with the armoring of the port of Calaise of the Channel Tunnel, for years the preferred escape route for refugees and migrants. It seems that about fifty people were crammed aboard the boat - which departed from Dunkirk - in adverse weather conditions, to say the least,both for the sea and for the temperature around zero. Macron asked for the immediate strengthening of the instruments of the Frontex agency at the external borders of the EU and an urgent meeting of the European ministers involved in the migration challenge: "Everything will be done to punish those responsible", promised the head of the Elysée. Castex and his Interior Minister, Gérald Darmanin, who rushed to the scene, defined the migrants as "victims of criminal passers-by who exploit desperation and lamisery". The prime minister, positive for Covid and in isolation at home, is following the situation "minute by minute" and tomorrow he will chair a crisis meeting of his main ministers. Bodies are still being sought, and in the evening three helicopters and three reconnaissance ships were still at work.Johnson also immediately called a crisis meeting to address the emergency and discourage crossings. And, in a difficult moment for relations between London and Paris, he did not give up on lashing Macron by stating that he "had difficulty in convincing some partners, especially the French, to do all the things that the situation requires in our opinion". Before today's disaster, the death toll since the beginning of the year was officially 3 dead and 4 missing. But that the situation was becoming explosive was understood by the climate that reigns in recent months in the camps of northern France, and also around Paris, where the camps are evacuated but the migrants remain without reference points on the sidewalks, at the crossroads or under the overpasses. . Meanwhile, the prosecutor's office has opened ainvestigation for help with illegal entry and aggravated manslaughter. According to the prefect of the region, Philippe Dutrieux, in 2021 31,500 migrants left the French coasts for England, 7,800 those rescued.


   An influx never seen before, which showed no signs of abating even with the arrival of cold weather.

Indeed, on 11 November the record of people landed on the English coast was reached, 1,185.

The first 10 months figure, according to London, is 22,000 migrants arriving on its shores.

(HANDLE).


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