Undocumented Migrants: English Channel:Written question - 52207

Q
Asked by Royston Smith
(Southampton, Itchen)
Asked on: 01 June 2020
Home Office
Undocumented Migrants: English Channel
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many migrants have attempted to illegally cross the English Channel since the start of 2020.
A
Answered by: Chris Philp
Answered on: 09 June 2020

People crossing the Channel to enter the UK have come from a safe country – usually France – and so there is no reason why they need to make this trip in order to claim asylum. Those fleeing persecution should stay in the first safe country they enter.

The UK continues to work closely with France and other countries to return migrants who have entered the UK by small boat in order to provide a strong deterrent against these dangerous crossings.

The number of migrants arriving in the UK crossing the Channel by small boats for the months of January to March 2020 is approx. 450.  These are provisional figures based on operational management information. The figures for April have not passed through a data quality check and cannot be assured. The final figures for all months will be published at a later date, once they have been verified and fully quality assured.

It should be noted that, by definition, we cannot be certain of the total number of people attempting to cross the English Channel via clandestine means.

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