EU is 'turning a blind eye to people dying'

EU is ‘turning a blind eye to people dying’: Brussels is accused of playing politics with migrant crisis by refusing to enter talks with UK on sending back asylum seekers who cross Channel

  • Believed EU officials said right to arrange asylum lies with bloc not individuals
  • Conservative source accused EU of ‘turning a blind eye to people dying’ 
  • Total number of boat migrants passed 10,500 this year – 2,000 more than 2020
  • 1,500 more are massing in Calais and Dunkirk waiting for weather to improve  

Brussels has been accused of playing politics with the EU’s migrant crisis by refusing to enter talks with the UK on sending back asylum seekers who cross the Channel. 

It is believed that EU officials said that the right to arrange asylum lies with the bloc rather than individual member states so will not help Britain send migrants back to France. 

A spokesman told the Sunday Telegraph that the post-Brexit agreement with the UK doesn’t include ‘provisions on asylum and return’ and they are not ‘considering pursuing further negotiations to complement the agreement’. 

And a Conservative source has accused the EU of ‘turning a blind eye to people dying’ for refusing to negotiate with the UK.  

However last month Home Secretary Priti Patel and her French counterpart Gerald Darmanin signed an agreement that both countries support a UK-EU readmission agreement.   

As the total number of boat migrants passed 10,500 this year – 2,000 more than the 8,417 who arrived in the whole of 2020 – sources said that Ministers had held urgent discussions between departments over the ‘tracking’ systems in place to monitor their movements after they arrive.

A further 1,500 migrants are massing around Calais and Dunkirk waiting for an improvement in the weather before they try to reach Britain.

Hundreds of migrants who arrived in the UK after crossing the English Channel on small boats have gone missing after absconding from their hotels, The Mail on Sunday has been told. Pictured: A group of migrants are brought in to Dover, Kent by Border Force, August 5, 2021

A Government source said: ‘There is growing consternation across Government about how many are coming here – and where they all are going. Nerves are fraying on this.’

After they arrive here, the migrants are put into hotels, where they are supposed to quarantine for ten days before being processed. Up to 10,000 hotel beds around the country are now taken up by the arrivals, with hotels block-booked by the Home Office until January to house them.

This newspaper revealed last week how dozens of asylum seekers are being housed in a hotel in one of London’s most upmarket postcodes where they are allowed to come and go as they please.

The Best Western Kensington Olympia, a short walk from the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s residence, Kensington Palace, has been closed to paying customers and is putting up 55 migrants – in some cases for up to nine months.

Residents are given key cards to access the building, where the rooms are equipped with wi-fi, air conditioning and flatscreen televisions.

The French government is under growing pressure to set up a joint maritime brigade to turn back the migrants.

As the total number of boat migrants passed 10,500 this year – 2,000 more than the 8,417 who arrived in the whole of 2020. Pictured: A line of migrants walk up a beach after coming ashore at Dungeness earlier this week

French President Emmanuel Macron has so far refused British offers of joint sea forces to stop and return migrant boats to France, with his officials claiming that maritime law dictates their vessels can stop the migrants’ boats only if they seek help or need rescuing.

The British dispute this, saying the rules of the sea allow the interception of ‘illegal’ attempts to enter UK waters.

Britain has given France an extra £54 million to double the number of police on beaches to 200 officers and boost surveillance. 

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