Boris Johnson: A meeting between the interior ministers of Great Britain, France, Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium is planned for Sunday
NEIL HALL / POOL / EPA
After the tragic boat accident with many dead in the English Channel, France and Great Britain blame each other.
The British government is now increasing pressure on Paris to prevent the crossings.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson called, among other things, for a joint agreement on the return of migrants.
That could be the "biggest single step" to destroy the business model of criminal smugglers, wrote the conservative politician on Thursday evening on Twitter. Since the implementation of Brexit, Great Britain can no longer make use of a corresponding EU regulation on the return of asylum seekers. Johnson also published a three-page letter to Macron that evening with further suggestions, including calling for joint patrols on French beaches.
On Wednesday, a boat capsized in the English Channel off the French city of Calais.
At least 27 people died.
As the BBC reported, citing French investigators, the victims are 17 men, seven women and three children.
French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin said two people survived.
They came from Somalia and Iraq.
The French authorities arrested five suspected people smugglers.
At least one suspect came from Germany, Darmanin said.
“The smuggler we arrested last night had German license plates.
He bought these rubber boats in Germany. "
Johnson accused France of a lack of commitment.
His spokesman pointed to the 62 million euros with which Great Britain supports the controls on the English Channel.
The money was intended to stop migrants, the spokesman said.
Former cabinet member Robert Jenrick said it was in the power of French President Emmanuel Macron to end the problem.
According to Johnson, a meeting between the interior ministers of Great Britain, France, Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands is planned for Sunday to discuss the situation on the English Channel.
France wants to monitor the coast more intensively
France has meanwhile announced that it will step up surveillance on its northern coast.
"I say it very clearly that our security forces are mobilized day and night," said French President Emmanuel Macron on Thursday during a visit to the Croatian capital, Zagreb.
He promised "maximum mobilization" of the French armed forces, with reservists and drones monitoring the coast.
Macron said France is just a transit country for many migrants, so more European cooperation is needed to combat illegal immigration.
French politicians, however, reject the British demand to send their own officials to France.
This year around 26,000 people have already arrived on the English coast - three times as many as in the entire previous year.
Despite the recent tragedy, many people have once again made the dangerous journey to Britain illegally.
Dozens of migrants again arrived on the English coast on Thursday, according to British media.
asc / dpa