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More than 1,200 migrants arrive to Britain on small boats in just three days


By DAVID BARRETT HOME AFFAIRS EDITOR
Wednesday June 14, 2023

More than 1,200 small boat migrants have arrived in Britain in just three days, marking a return to levels not seen since last year.

The Home Office yesterday confirmed 545 migrants reached the UK across the Channel on Monday, after 703 over the weekend.

It means levels are at their highest since the end of November.

It came as the United Nations warned that 110million people globally have been displaced from their homes.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said in a new report that numbers had surged by more than 20million since its last estimates.

The agency's total covered people displaced by 'war, persecution, violence and human rights abuses'.

Its estimates said there are more than 35million refugees who have fled their home nations, including 5.7million Ukrainians who have fled Vladimir Putin's bloody war.

A further 62.5million people globally have been displaced within their own countries.

Numbers are continuing to rise due to instability in Somalia and Sudan, in particular, the UNHCR said.

Ministers here in Britain, including Home Secretary Suella Braverman, have said the global number of migrants is directly linked to those who end up attempting to cross the Channel.

The UNHCR said the UK was one of 92 countries to see an increase in its asylum processing backlog last year, while 43 other countries saw a fall.

The surge across the Channel came as peers complained they have been 'abused, bullied and intimidated' by the Government over a new package of immigration measures.

Following a late night session last week, the House of Lords sat until after 2am yesterday debating the Illegal Migration Bill. Lib Dem peer Baroness Ludford said the package had received 'almost no scrutiny' in the Commons.

'When we do try to do it we are abused, bullied and intimidated as we were until 4.20am last Thursday,' she said.

'It would be perfectly possible to have a... more rational timetable for this Bill.

'I do not appreciate the behaviour of the Government over this Bill.'

Labour peer Baroness Lister complained in the chamber she was 'shaking with tiredness'. But Tory peer Lord Hodgson told the opposition: 'We would move forward a great deal faster if we hadn't had so many repetitious speeches.'

The Bill, which has already been through the Commons, aims to ensure those arriving in the UK without permission are detained and promptly deported, either to their home country or a third country such as Rwanda.

Critics argue the draft legislation breaks international law and undermines modern slavery protections.

The number of small boat arrivals this year now stands at 8,858, compared with 10,138 at the same point last year.