Priti Patel says Channel crossings ‘must come down’ as migrant arrivals set to hit 22,000


    More than 8,900 migrants have already made the 21-mile trip this year, surpassing the 8,420 journeying from Calais to Dover in 2020. Analysis conducted by The Times indicates the overall figure could reach as high as 22,000.

    But officials at the UK Border Force are privately anticipating an even higher tally.

    One official said the estimate was “modest” and suggested it could be even higher if arrivals continued at their current pace.

    This mirrors claims made by Migration Watch UK.

    The independent non-political think tank based in Westminster has said the annual figure could reach as high as 25,000.

    An estimated 8,500 more migrants are expected to smuggle themselves from Calais to Dover in the back of lorries, up from the 7,000 that entered the UK by the same means last year.

    Priti Patel vented frustration about the number of arrivals with Dan O’Mahoney, Clandestine Channel Threat Commander, a Home Office source revealed.

    More than 1,200 migrants crossed the Channel in the last week alone.

    One insider at the department told The Times: “She read the riot act to Commander Dan and the team and told them these numbers cannot be repeated. They must come down and come down quickly.”

    READ MORE: Patel’s £54m handout to Macron attacked as UK ‘fobbed off’ by French

    The Brexiteer Conservative MP Tim Loughton said: “The French try to claim that intercepting boats in their waters has never been tested in their domestic law. They should be forced to test it. At the moment they just want to make their problem our problem.”


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