At least 31 migrants dead and others missing after boat sinks off French coast

Speaking exterior a hospital in Calais, Darmanin stated 5 girls and a bit woman have been among the many dead. Two individuals have been saved and one particular person remains to be missing, he stated. French President Emmanuel Macron and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson each expressed horror on the tragedy, and despatched their condolences to the households of the victims. Macron stated his nation wouldn’t let the English Channel turn out to be a graveyard and urged his European counterparts to extend efforts to keep away from future tragedies. “To the families of the victims, to their loved ones, I want to express my compassion and the unconditional support of France,” the President stated in a press release.

“I assure them that everything will be done to find and condemn those responsible, networks of smugglers who exploit misery and distress, endanger human lives and ultimately decimate families,” he added. Macron stated France had been working with the UK for a number of months to dismantle smuggling networks. “Since the beginning of 2021, thanks to the mobilization of 600 police officers and gendarmes, 1,552 smugglers have been arrested on the northern coast and 44 smuggling networks have been dismantled,” he stated. “Despite this action, 47,000 attempts to cross to Great Britain have been made since January 1st, with 7,800 migrants saved by our rescue services.”

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France’s regional maritime prefecture earlier stated a search-and-rescue operation for survivors was ongoing within the Strait of Pas-de-Calais, and described it because the worst-ever accident within the stretch of water.
The nation’s sea minister Annick Girardin stated French, British and Belgian helicopters have been trying to find the missing. French Prime Minister Jean Castex described the incident as a “tragedy.” “My thoughts are with the many missing and injured, victims of criminal smugglers who exploit their distress and misery,” he stated in a tweet.

Dangerous crossing

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson stated he was “shocked and appalled, and deeply saddened by the loss of life at sea.” “My thoughts and sympathies are, first of all with the victims and their families, and it’s an appalling thing that they have suffered,” Johnson informed reporters. “But I also want to say that this disaster underscores how dangerous it is to cross the Channel in this way. And it also shows how vital it is that we now step up our efforts to break the business model of the gangsters who are sending people to sea in this way, and that’s why it’s so important that we accelerate if we possibly can all the measures contained in our borders … so that we distinguish between people who come here legally, and people who come here illegally.” He added that the authorities would “leave no stone unturned to the business proposition of the human traffickers and the gangsters … who are literally getting away with murder.” Johnson stated it was time for the UK, France and Europe to “step up” and work collectively. He was on account of chair a gathering of the Cobra emergency committee in response to the tragedy, his spokesperson stated. UK Home Secretary Priti Patel stated in a press release that the tragedy “serves as the starkest possible reminder of the dangers of these Channel crossings organised by ruthless criminal gangs.” She added: “We will continue to intensify all cooperation with France and other European partners to prevent migrants embarking on these deadly journeys.” On Monday, France’s (*31*) of Interior introduced it was sending tools and autos price over 11 million euros ($12.3 million) as a part of an settlement with the United Kingdom, “to secure the coastal strip extending over more than 130 km, from Dunkirk to the Bay of Somme.” It added that “the police and gendarmes will have additional resources to carry out the mission of fighting illegal immigration.” Last week, 243 individuals have been rescued within the English Channel as they tried to cross to the UK. More than 25,700 individuals have crossed the English Channel to the UK up to now this yr in small boats, based on knowledge compiled by Britain’s PA Media information company. This is thrice the full for the entire of 2020, PA studies.

CNN’s Amy Cassidy, Joseph Ataman and Xiaofei Xu contributed to this report.

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