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Channel crossings top 43,000 for the year so far

More than 43,000 migrants have crossed the Channel to the UK so far this year, figures show (Gareth Fuller/PA)
More than 43,000 migrants have crossed the Channel to the UK so far this year, figures show (Gareth Fuller/PA)

More than 43,000 migrants have crossed the Channel to the UK so far this year, figures show.

The Ministry of Defence said 884 people were detected in 17 boats on Tuesday. This suggests an average of around 52 per boat.

The latest crossings take the provisional total for 2022 to date to 43,500, according to PA news agency analysis of Government figures.

POLITICS Migrants
(PA Graphics)

It comes as a man is due in court after at least 27 migrants drowned while trying to cross the Channel in a dinghy last year.

Harem Ahmed Abwbaker, who was arrested in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, on Tuesday, faces being extradited to France.

The 32-year-old is suspected of being a member of an organised crime gang behind the crossing in November 2021 and is accused of the “French equivalent of manslaughter” and facilitating illegal immigration, the National Crime Agency (NCA) said.

All but two of the migrants on board died after the boat sank. Four people are still missing.

Last week, relatives of those who died marked the first anniversary of the tragedy and called on politicians to end their “poisonous rhetoric” which they said “breeds fear and division”.

Their demands were made amid concerns that French rescue services failed to respond adequately to the incident and as an official report from the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) found the boat had reached UK waters.