United Kingdom

Border Force intercepts 60 migrants crossing English Channel

Around 60 migrants are believed to have crossed the Channel in small boats to Britain today.

Border Force officers intercepted the asylum seekers and brought them into Dover, Kent, where they will be checked for any coronavirus symptoms.

Conditions were perfect for crossing, with clear skies and the weather getting warmer.

Pictured after Border Force officials intercepted asylum seekers and brought them to Dover, Kent, where they were checked for coronavirus symptoms, earlier today

Migrants wear protective face masks as they wait to be transferred to the Processing Centre at Dover Harbour in Kent. It follows 53 refugees arriving on Saturday

The first boat is thought to have made it to English waters shortly before midnight.

On Monday, seven migrants from Sudan and Chad were taken in by a Border Force coastal patrol vessel at 4.55am.

They came after 53 refugees arrived on Saturday.

Before today, at least 555 migrants are known to have made it to the UK this year - despite millions of pounds being pumped into security measures to stop crossings.

Last week it emerged that at least three migrants in camps across Calais and Dunkirk - where around 1,500 are living in squalor - had been diagnosed with coronavirus, sparking fears the disease could be spreading like wildfire in the settlements.

Tony Eastaugh, Home Office director for crime and enforcement, said: 'These crossings are facilitated by criminals. 

Migrants, Border Force and Immigration officials seen wearing protective face masks. Before today, at least 555 migrants are known to have made it to the UK this year

'We are doing everything in our power to bring them to justice and stop this illegal activity.

'We are working around the clock with the NCA and French law enforcement agencies to arrest and dismantle organised crime gangs.

'Since January 2019, 110 people smugglers have been convicted and imprisoned and over 155 people who arrived on small boats have been returned.

'And that's not all, there are now extra patrols on French beaches, drones, specialist vehicles and detection equipment to stop small boats leaving European shores.'

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