The European border agency Frontex will deploy an aircraft from 1 December to help fight against migratory traffic in the Channel. This was announced this Sunday by the French Minister of the Interior, Gerald Darmanin, at the end of a European meeting in Calais convened after the death of 27 migrants on Wednesday.
This “European apparatus will be able to help the French, Dutch and Belgian police forces day and night”, he said, also reaffirming Paris’s desire to “work” with “its British friends”, to better dry up this migratory route, but on an “equal footing”. The meeting attended by officials in charge of German, Dutch and Belgian immigration, as well as the European Commissioner for Home Affairs and the directors of the European criminal police agencies Europol and Frontex borders “was not anti-English, it was pro-European, ”he underlined.
Strengthen “operational cooperation”
In a joint declaration, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands and France agreed to “strengthen their operational cooperation” against trafficking but also “to improve joint cooperation with the United Kingdom”. Gérald Darmanin had disinvited his British counterpart, Priti Patel, in response to a letter published Thursday evening on Twitter by Boris Johnson, asking Paris to take back migrants arriving from France in Great Britain.
“We have to work with our British friends and tell them a number of things: first, to help us collectively to better fight against smugglers, we lack information, answers are not always at the rendezvous of police requests French for example, ”added Gérald Darmanin. But we must also “fight against the attractiveness of England” with migrants, with in particular “a labor market which means that without an identity document you can work”, he added, also noting that “he there is more legal way to seek asylum in England ”.