Migrant crossings: Priti Patel's 'incompetence on this issue is dangerous', Labour claims
By SEAMLESS DAILY
21 November 2021
labour has accused priti patel of "comprehensively failing" on the issue of migrant crossings in the channel in small boats after a record number of people arrived on british shores in small boats last week.
The shadow home secretary, Nick Thomas-Symonds, told the Sky News programme on Sunday that his counterpart's "incompetence on this issue is dangerous".
But Health Secretary Sajid Javid defended the home secretary's work on the matter- despite the surge in the number of crossings- telling Sky News the government has "a great track record" of providing security protection to "those people who are genuinely fleeing persecution".
he added : "we do have to ask ourselves, if people are trying to get into the uk from safe countries like france, are they genuine asylum seekers or not?
"It is right to ask that and it is right to change the rules to take that into account, and that's what the home secretary is doing."
Last Thursday, 1,185 individuals arrived in the UK- a new record for a single day in the current wave- with a total of more than 24,700 people having reached the island using small boats to cross the Channel so far this year, according to data compiled by the PA news agency.
high-ranking officials believe at least 10 people have died in the last few weeks while trying to make the crossing across one of the world's busiest shipping channels.
The government has announced that a review will look at how to stop migrants crossing the English Channel and entering the UK amid concern that current measures are not working.
Downing Street has tasked the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Stephen Barclay with bringing departments together to find a solution.
Earlier this week, Ms Patel appeared to blame the EU's open borders – established by the Schengen Agreement – for failing to check the movement of people through the bloc.
The home secretary added that the EU has "no border protections whatsoever" which has led to a "mass migration crisis".
A Home Office spokesperson said : "Migrants making these dangerous crossings are putting their lives at risk and it is vital we do everything we can to prevent them and break the business model of the criminal gangs exploiting people.
People should claim asylum in the first safe country they reach – rather than making dangerous journeys to the UK."
It comes after Boris Johnson was said to be "exasperated" with the situation, drafting in Cabinet Office minister Steve Barclay to oversee a cross-Whitehall review of the situation in respect of migrants arriving on Britain's shores.
"It's the home secretary who on her watch said she would make this route unviable … If numbers were to increase by the same rate again next year … we ’ ll have more people risking their lives in the Channel than voters in Priti Patel ’ s constituency," he said.
Speaking to reporters during a visit to Washington, she said she was "constantly pressing" the French on the issue, but that they were “ overwhelmed ”.
Sajid Javid, the health secretary, defended Patel's record.
He is also expected to focus on more diplomatic efforts around the government's “ offshoring policy ” – paying other countries to take asylum seekers and provide a base for processing claims.
Conservative MPs confronted Johnson over the Channel crossings at a meeting of the 1922 Committee on Thursday.
If we don't do it, they won ’ t forgive us."
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