Friday, January 21

Migrants dead in the Channel: what we know before the European meeting in Calais this Sunday

After the sinking of a migrant boat that occurred last Wednesday, costing the lives of 27 people, the Minister of the Interior, Gerald Darmanin, is due to meet this Sunday in Calais with his German, Dutch and Belgian counterparts. A European meeting that will ultimately take place without the British, since their invitation has been withdrawn.

This European meeting, which aims to “fight against illegal immigration and smuggling networks” will also include the European Commissioner for Home Affairs. The meeting is set at 3 p.m. in the port city of northern France. In addition, the European criminal police agencies Europol and Frontex borders will also be represented.

The Minister of the Interior hopes “to strengthen operational cooperation in the fight against smugglers because they are international networks which operate in various European countries”, as specified in the press note.

Britain is punished

Although the British are among the first concerned by this migration crisis, Gérald Darmanin preferred to cancel the arrival of the Secretary of State for the Interior, Priti Patel, following Boris Johnson’s letter, posted on Twitter Thursday evening. The latter asked France to “redouble its efforts” to repel the influx of migrants.

If this method of communication had been strongly criticized by Emmanuel Macron, Gérald Darmanin expressed his disappointment with Ms. Patel, faced with “the demands of the British Prime Minister, deeming even worse that they are published”.

And in this duel between France and Great Britain, this first can count on the support of Brussels, reinforced moreover since Brexit. This Saturday, Margaritis Schinas, the vice-president of the European Commission, thus made understand to the English that they had to take their responsibilities in order to “solve their problems relating to the arrival of the migrants”.

“The United Kingdom has left the European Union, as a result it must now decide how to organize the management of its border control,” he insisted.

A European meeting that is not unanimous

This recent shipwreck from which only two men of Iraqi and Somali origins were rescued, is the worst migratory drama in the Channel since 2018. But despite all these tragedies and the dismantling of the networks of smugglers, trafficking is far from declining, especially since Germany seems to have become a rear base for the smugglers.

And for some migrant aid associations, this European meeting is far from solving the problem. The president of the Auberge des Migrants, François Guennoc believes that when “the government accuses the smugglers, it is a way of hiding its own responsibilities”. According to him “if there were possibilities of legal passages in Great Britain, there would be no smugglers”.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *