Migrants. Visiting the Nord and Pas-de-Calais, the Minister of the Interior puts pressure on the British
Visiting Calais and Dunkirk on Saturday 10 October, the Minister of the Interior responded to the British after their criticism of France’s management of migrants on its coasts. He asked them to keep their pledge of funding and call for the negotiation of a new migrants treaty.
This is not the first time that Gérald Darmanin has traveled to the Nord-Pas-de-Calais coast to speak out on the migration issue. But on Saturday October 10, no additional means announced, the Home Secretary came to put pressure on the British government. He asked him to settle the 62.7 million pledges at the end of July to strengthen the police on the coasts and start thinking about a new migration treaty.
British funding called into question
For several weeks, across the Channel, Conservatives and ministers of the government of His Gracious Majesty have been increasing criticism against the management of migrants on the French side, deemed ineffective. Since the start of the school year, hundreds of migrants have arrived on the English coast at Boris Johnson’s great dam, which had made Brexit the promise to see these flows dry up.
“Not a paid penny has been paid to the French government”, lamented Gérald Darmanin, guest in the newspaper of France 3 Nord-Pas-de-Calais. “We call on the British to keep their funding promises since we hold the border for them”, he added.
At the end of July, the United Kingdom pledged to pay 62.7 million euros to France to finance the strengthening of the police on the coasts. A promise questioned by the British Home Secretary in September in the face of record arrivals of migrants on English soil.
A negotiation project
“However, gendarmes have been hired in addition, technological means have been bought to keep this border”, explained Gérald Darmanin. “We are here to hold a border, it’s true. But we are there to do it, in complementarity with our British friends”, he added.
The Minister of the Interior also announced that France will lead a negotiation project on the migration issue between London and the European Union when it holds the six-monthly presidency of the European Union in January. A question controlled until today by the Touquet agreements which entered into force in 2004
Since the end of 2018, illegal crossings of the Channel have increased: 15,400 migrants attempted the trip between January 1 and August 31. Against 9,600 in 2020 and 2,300 in 2019.