More than 40 migrants arrive in Dover as Channel crossings resume after four day break

More than 40 migrants arrive in Dover as Channel crossings resume after four day break due to poor weather: Group are brought ashore by border Force as numbers landing in UK this year edges closer to 30,000

  • Dozens of migrants plucked from Channel following an incident with their boat
  • Young men, women and children were brought to shore by Border Force vessel
  • More than 29,700 migrants have now reached the UK by small boats this year 

Dozens of migrants have been plucked out of the English Channel today after their vessel came into trouble while attempting the perilous 21-mile journey across the Dover Straits. 

Groups of young men, women and children were pictured being brought to shore in Kent by Border Force on Tuesday morning, as the total number to arrive by small boats this year nears 30,000. 

Wearing red life jackets and face masks, the migrants sailed to safety aboard the BF Defender with the help of members of the Armed Forces. 

It is the first time since Thursday that crossings have taken place after the last few days saw windy conditions at sea.

That day more than 600 people arrived after nearly 40 were rescued from the Channel when their boat sank off the Kent coast.

More than 29,700 people have crossed the Channel to the UK so far this year, according to provisional Government figures. This is higher than the number for the whole of 2021, which was 28,526.

Groups of young men, women and children are pictured being brought to shore in Kent by Border Force on Tuesday morning, as the total number to arrive by small boats this year nears 30,000

Groups of young men, women and children are pictured being brought to shore in Kent by Border Force on Tuesday morning, as the total number to arrive by small boats this year nears 30,000

Wearing red life jackets and face masks, the migrants sailed to safety aboard the BF Defender vessel

Wearing red life jackets and face masks, the migrants sailed to safety aboard the BF Defender vessel 

A group of people thought to be migrants are brought in to Dover, Kent, from a Border Force vessel following a small boat incident in the Channel on Tuesday morning

A group of people thought to be migrants are brought in to Dover, Kent, from a Border Force vessel following a small boat incident in the Channel on Tuesday morning 

A group of people thought to be migrants walk through the Border Force compound in Dover, Kent, on Tuesday morning, after being rescued at sea

A group of people thought to be migrants walk through the Border Force compound in Dover, Kent, on Tuesday morning, after being rescued at sea 

Migrants arrive to the shores of Kent aboard the BF Defender vessel operated by Border Force

Migrants arrive to the shores of Kent aboard the BF Defender vessel operated by Border Force

Migrants form a single file after being brought to shore in Kent following a rescue operation at sea

Migrants form a single file after being brought to shore in Kent following a rescue operation at sea 

Members of the Armed Forces can be seen assisting migrants off a Border Force vessel in Kent on Tuesday morning

Members of the Armed Forces can be seen assisting migrants off a Border Force vessel in Kent on Tuesday morning 

IN NUMBERS: 2022’s migrant record  

The number has increased steadily each year since 299 people were detected making the journey in 2018.

There were 1,843 crossings detected in 2019, 8,466 in 2020 and 28,526 in 2021, according to the Home Office

The current cumulative total for 2022, 29,099 is nearly double the number at this point last year (14,474).

Of the 29,099 people who have been provisionally detected so far this year, 23,831 have crossed since the Government announced on April 14 that it had agreed a deal to deport some asylum seekers to Rwanda.

The first deportation flight – due to take off on June 14 – was grounded amid a series of legal challenges.

In 2021 more than half of the people detected crossing the Channel were of Iranian or Iraqi nationality (30% and 22% of the total respectively).

A further 10% were Eritrean, 9% were Syrian and 5% were from Afghanistan.

Former home secretary Priti Patel said in the House of Commons on September 5 that Albanian nationals accounted for around 60% of the people arriving in the UK via small boats over the summer.

The average has risen steadily since the start of 2021.

In 2018 there were fewer than 10 people per boat, while in 2019 and 2020 the figure tended to fluctuate between single figures and the high teens.

From 2021 the average started to increase, reaching 20 in March and 30 in August.

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And last month, Government officials said it was remarkable there had not been any drownings or other serious incidents so far this year as the average number of people per boat rose to 44, compared to 28 in 2021. 

The first two weeks of September alone saw 4,056 people arrive in 96 boats, and more were expected to risk the perilous journey this week amid better weather conditions at sea. 

In 2021 there were 28,526 migrants detained in what was then a record compared to 8,410 in 2020.

But 2022 became an official record year after the MoD confirmed 601 people had arrived in the UK on September 12 – taking the total to 28,561.

The issue will be among the top priorities for new Home Secretary Suella Braverman, who replaced Priti Patel when Liz Truss became prime minister. 

She is said to be deliberately reaching out to Home Office staff in a bid to have a ‘clean break’ from her predecessor’s ‘challenging’ tenure, which saw Ms Patel’s leadership mired by claims of bullying before a Cabinet Office inquiry found she had broken the ministerial code – only holding onto her position because the then-PM Boris Johnson rejected the findings. 

Civil servants told the Times that Ms Braverman has ‘gone out of her way’ to show that she will respect staff. 

It comes after morale reached ‘rock bottom’ following the Home Office’s failed bid to fly migrants to Rwanda – with one mandarin comparing it to Nazi Germany in an internal Q&A on the controversial policy. 

However Ms Braverman has told staff she will ‘double down’ on the plans. 

One Tory MP told the Times: ‘She’s as rightwing as Priti, but cleverer. 

‘Priti was affected by her experience at the Home Office over the Rutnam thing — a lot of baggage. 

‘Once that happened, she was always in a difficult situation because why would the Home Office want her to succeed? [Braverman] is not unaware of the scale of that problem, though. She’s very aware that she’ll have to be very decisive in order to get what she wants done.’

Ms Braverman previously told allies that she wants to substantially increase the use of detention facilities in Britain to house migrants arriving to the Kent coast. 

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