Migrant Channel crossings fall to zero after Rwanda scheme announcement

There have been no recorded migrant crossings of the Channel in the last eight days

Published

No migrant crossings of the English Channel have been recorded since the government's announcement of the Rwanda scheme.

GB News presenter Nigel Farage said migrant crossings could hit their highest ever level after an unprecedented amount earlier this year.

But no crossings have been recorded since Priti Patel announced plans to send unregistered migrants to African country Rwanda for processing, where they will stay.

No 10 sources told the Sun high winds in the Channel were more likely to be the cause of this and record amounts could still cross in the summer.

Migrants crossing the Channel
Migrants crossing the Channel

A No10 source told the paper: "We are confident the approach which is in the process of being set up will help break the business model which is seeing criminal gangs exploit vulnerable people.

"We want to get this operational as soon as possible and we hope to make the first flights shortly.

Home Secretary Priti Patel is facing High Court challenges over controversial plans to send asylum seekers to Rwanda.

Home Secretary Priti Patel makes a statement in the House of Commons in London
Home Secretary Priti Patel makes a statement in the House of Commons in London

A “world-first” agreement with the east African nation, which will see it receive asylum seekers deemed by the UK to have arrived “illegally” and therefore inadmissible under new immigration rules, was signed earlier this month.

The latest step in the Government’s plan to curb Channel crossings and overhaul the asylum system has drawn criticism from across the political spectrum, including from the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby.

The charity Freedom From Torture, which supports survivors of torture who are often asylum seekers and refugees, wrote to the Home Office on Wednesday requesting further information, with a view to bringing a High Court claim over the policy.

The first step towards another challenge, from charities Detention Action and Care4Calais – and the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union which represents the majority of Border Force staff, was taken on Tuesday when they sent a pre-action letter to the Home Office.

A letter from Freedom From Torture’s legal representatives, Leigh Day, says that, while a memorandum of understanding between the UK and Rwanda has been published, information about the policy has not been made publicly available.

It also says the charity has “serious concerns” about the policy and in due course plans to bring a judicial review.