Prime Minister Boris Johnson has warned people smugglers are “getting away with murder” as he urged the government to do more on its border.

Boris Johnson warns people smugglers are 'getting away with murder'

Boris urges France to 'step up' and stop smugglers 'getting away with murder'

Criminal gangs are ‘getting away with murder,’ according to Boris Johnson. (Photo courtesy of PA)

After 27 people died attempting to cross the Channel near Calais, Boris Johnson asked France to’step up’ and do more to halt migrants.

Five women and a little child were among the casualties when their flimsy boat sank in the Pas-de-Calais soon after leaving France yesterday afternoon, described to a “pool you blow up in your backyard.” One of the ladies who died was subsequently discovered to be pregnant.

Officials in France had initially said that 31 people had died, but the death toll was then lowered down, with no explanation given for the disparity. Since the current immigration crisis started, it has been the biggest catastrophe of its type.

Last night, the Prime Minister pushed France to take more measures to prevent the tide of migrants across the Channel, including agreeing to combined police patrols around the French coast.

‘This incident emphasizes how perilous it is to cross the Channel in this manner, and it also illustrates how crucial it is that we immediately step up our efforts to undermine the economic model of the criminals who are sending people to sea in this way,’ he said after chairing a Cobra meeting.

‘The operation being carried out by our allies on the beaches, sponsored as you know by £54 million by the UK, and the technological assistance we’ve been providing, hasn’t been enough,’ he continued.

‘Our offer is to extend our assistance, as well as to collaborate with our partners on the beaches where these boats are launched.’

‘I hope that, in light of what has transpired, that will be acceptable, since there is no question that the gangs involved will continue to mislead people, put people’s lives in danger, and get away with murder.’

Calais Migrants

Boris Johnson has asked France to take further measures to halt the influx of migrants crossing the English Channel (Picture: PA)

French President Emmanuel Macron gives a speech during a debate with local representatives and public and private actors involved in renovation projects during a visit to Amiens focused on the attractivity of the Somme department, France, November 22, 2021. Ludovic Marin/Pool via REUTERS

He also talked with Emmanuel Macron, the French President (Picture: Reuters)

TOPSHOT - Migrants are helped ashore from an RNLI (Royal National Lifeboat Institution) lifeboat at a beach in Dungeness, southeast England, on November 24, 2021 after being rescued while crossing the English Channel. - The past three years have seen a significant rise in attempted Channel crossings by migrants, despite warnings of the dangers in the busy shipping lane between northern France and southern England, which is subject to strong currents and low temperatures. (Photo by Ben STANSALL / AFP) (Photo by BEN STANSALL/AFP via Getty Images)

At a beach near Dungeness yesterday, migrants were brought ashore by an RNLI (Royal National Lifeboat Institution) lifeboat (Picture: AFP via Getty)

A man wheels a gurney into a warehouse in the Port of Calais, France, where it is believed the bodies of migrants are being transported after recovery from a boat which capsized off the French coast with the loss of 31 lives on Wednesday. An emergency search was sparked when a fishing boat sounded the alarm after spotting several people in the sea off the coast of France. Authorities found 31 bodies and two survivors while one person was missing. Picture date: Wednesday November 24, 2021. PA Photo. See PA story POLITICS Migrants . Photo credit should read: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

In the Port of Calais, a guy pushes a gurney inside a warehouse (Picture: PA)

On Wednesday evening, Mr Johnson talked with President Emmanuel Macron.

On their attempts to break up the human trafficking gangs responsible for putting desperate individuals at danger in one of the world’s busiest water passages, Downing Street claimed they had decided to ‘keep all options on the table.’

Mr Johnson has reaffirmed a prior promise to deploy UK police and Border Force personnel to launch joint patrols with the French, according to Immigration Compliance Minister Tom Pursglove.

The goal is to prevent migrant boats from making the risky journey, but the French have historically objected due to worries about national sovereignty.

However, Mr Pursglove said that the most recent event demonstrated that the two nations’ cooperation in dealing with the problem needed to be strengthened.

‘The Prime Minister and President Macron have had precisely that talk this evening,’ he BBC 2’s Newsnight. That is something I am extremely interested in seeing happen.

‘It is true that we have volunteered to host and assist with joint patrols in the past. That, I believe, might be quite useful in addressing this problem. I really hope the French rethink their offer.’

On both sides of the Channel, shock and dismay greeted what was commonly termed as a “tragedy.”

epa09601868 An ???Emergency and victim assistance vehicle??? ambulance arrives to the emergency entrance at Calais Hospital Center, in Calais, France, 24 November 2021. At least 31 migrants are dead and two more were brought to the hospital after the boat they were on sank. EPA/Mohammed Badra

Calais Hospital Center receives an emergency vehicle. (Photo courtesy of the Environmental Protection Agency)

This photograph taken on November 24, 2021 shows a French volunteer sea rescue organisation Societe Nationale de Sauvetage en Mer (SNSM) boat carrying bodies of migrants arriving at Calais harbour after 27 migrants died in the sinking of their boat off the coast of Calais. (Photo by FRANCOIS LO PRESTI / AFP) (Photo by FRANCOIS LO PRESTI/AFP via Getty Images)

A boat from the Societe Nationale de Sauvetage en Mer (SNSM), a French volunteer maritime rescue organization, is transporting corpses of migrants (Picture: AFP via Getty)

After a fishing boat observed persons in the water off the coast of France, the French and British police started a combined search and rescue effort, which was ultimately called off late on Wednesday.

Five ladies and a child were among the deceased, according to French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin, while two survivors were picked up and are being treated in a French hospital.

Mr Darmanin compared the sinking boat to a ‘pool you blow up in your lawn,’ saying it was quite fragile.

In connection with the event, French officials detained four suspected people traffickers, and the regional prosecutor initiated an inquiry into aggravated manslaughter.

The head of the Societe Nationale de Sauvetage en Mer in Calais, a French volunteer rescue organization, stated this morning that more cross-Channel human trafficking may be anticipated.

‘It’s really upsetting to witness victims like today, and it’s not over since we’re enjoying an extraordinarily tranquil month of November,’ Bernard Baron told FrancInfo radio. It’s generally a stormy month in November.’

Smugglers are expected to continue trafficking in the coming weeks, according to him.

A discarded life jacket on the beach in Wimereux near Calais as migrants continue to launch small boats along the coastline in a bid to cross the Channel towards the UK. Picture date: Thursday November 18, 2021. PA Photo. See PA story POLITICS Migrants. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

More crossings are anticipated, according to the head of the French volunteer rescue organization Societe Nationale de Sauvetage en Mer in Calais (Picture: PA)

French police officers patrol the beaches in Wimereux near Calais as migrants continue to launch small boats along the coastline in a bid to cross the Channel towards the UK. Picture date: Thursday November 18, 2021. PA Photo. See PA story POLITICS Migrants. Photo credit should read: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

Mr Johnson also said that the government will work to ‘accelerate’ the Nationality and Borders Bill’s provisions (Picture: PA)

Natacha Bouchart, the mayor of Calais, said the British were to fault for the situation and urged Mr Johnson to “stand up to his obligations.”

‘The British Government is to blame,’ she is cited in French media as saying. Boris Johnson, I think, has cynically decided to blame France for the last year and a half.’

Meanwhile, Mr Johnson said that the Government will aim to ‘accelerate’ provisions in the Nationality and Borders Bill that would allow police to ‘identify between individuals who come here legitimately and those who come here illegally.’

The event, according to Enver Solomon, chief executive of the Refugee Council, should cause the government to reconsider its stance.

‘Surely, a tragedy of this proportions is the wake-up call our Government needs to modify its strategy and finally commit to expanding safe pathways for those men, women, and children in dire need of protection,’ he added.

See also: France

The episode, according to Maya Konforti, secretary general of the French humanitarian organization l’Auberge des Migrants, was a “catastrophe.”

‘We were confident this will happen one day, but up ‘to now…,’ she told French television station BFMTV. When there have been fatalities in the past, they have been one or two at a time, but this is a disaster.’

The NGO was attempting to identify the dead, contact the relatives, plan funerals, and return the bodies, she added.

Ms Konforti went on to say that although the British government and the French interior minister blame smugglers, “the presence of smugglers is in reaction to a need; a need because there is no legal route to get to Britain and seek asylum.”

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