At least 27 dead after migrant boat capsizes in English Channel

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The British and French governments have pledged to step up joint efforts to stop migrant crossings after their inflatable boat bound for the UK capsized in the English Channel on Wednesday, killing at least 27 migrants. for euronews,

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big picture: French Interior Minister Gerald Dormanin told reporters that five women and a girl were among the dead. Four people are said to be missing, there is a possibility of drowning. The International Organization for Migration said it was the deadliest migrant drowning recorded in the English Channel since it began collecting data in 2014, bbc notes,

What are you saying: Darmanin said four suspected human traffickers had been arrested in connection with the incident, which saw the “extremely fragile” boat sink before it sank. It was not immediately clear where the drowning victims were from.

  • A spokesman for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said in a statement To this he and French President Emmanuel Macron “agreed to pursue joint efforts to prevent these deadly crossings and to do everything possible to stop the gangs responsible for putting people’s lives at risk.”
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yes but: Despite talk of cooperation, British and French officials have traded barbs on the matter, with Johnson renewing calls for France to agree to joint patrols along its coast, and Macron asking UK officials to address the issue. warned not to politicize The Guardian Notes,

of note: British and French officers issued a joint statement On 15 November it agreed to “further strengthen operational cooperation” to reach the goal of preventing “100% crossing” of the Channel by migrants.

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What are they saying: Macron said in a statement: “France will not allow Chanel to become a cemetery.

  • Johnson said the disaster “underscores how dangerous it is to cross the Channel in this way.”

what to watch: Johnson has called a meeting of his government’s crisis committee, Cobra, to discuss the matter, Euronews reports.

  • Macron was in talks with his government ministers on Thursday morning, calling an emergency European meeting and calling for more funding for Frontex, the EU border agency.

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