The migrants were picked up and taken to the French ports of Calais and Boulogne-sur-Mer | Photo: picture-alliance/dpa/Maxppp/J. Ben Azzouz
The migrants were picked up and taken to the French ports of Calais and Boulogne-sur-Mer | Photo: picture-alliance/dpa/Maxppp/J. Ben Azzouz

The coast guard was alerted that several boats were in trouble as they attempted to cross the English Channel to Britain.

French maritime authorities rescued 72 people who were trying to cross the English Channel, officials said on Sunday. There were 11 children in the group.

The migrants had planned to navigate to the UK, but their vessels got into difficulties just off the coast from the French port city of Calais.

One boat was picked up by a French patrol vessel and the 38 people on board taken to Calais.

Some 34 others were rescued by a tugboat operated by the French navy and taken to Boulogne-sur-Mer, also on France's northern coast.

No injuries were reported and the migrants were handed over to the border police.

Key migrant route

A growing number of migrants are using small boats to make the 34 kilometer (21 mile) sea journey to try to reach Britain, despite the huge dangers. This is partly due to tougher border checks on trucks and trains.

The Channel is one of the world's busiest shipping lanes with strong currents and low water temperatures.

In 2020 alone, there were some 9,500 crossings or attempted crossings, according to the French coastguard, which is more than four times than in the year before.

There have been at least 10 deaths reported over the past two years, prompting both the UK and France to boost coastal security patrols.

Author: mm/dj (AFP, dpa)

First published: March 21, 2021

Copyright DW - All rights reserved

DW is not responsible for the content of external websites

dw.com


Volume 90%

 

Watch video

05:25

French border police patrol English Channel

The Channel is one of the world's busiest shipping lanes with strong currents and low water temperatures.

In 2020 alone, there were some 9,500 crossings or attempted crossings, according to the French coastguard, which is more than four times than in the year before.

There have been at least 10 deaths reported over the past two years, prompting both the UK and France  to boost coastal security patrols.

mm/dj (AFP, dpa)

DW RECOMMENDS

Migrant entries to EU drop to lowest levels since 2013 due to COVID

Fewer people attempted to enter the EU without authorization in 2020, largely due to coronavirus restrictions, the bloc's border agency said. Syrian were again the largest group of people trying to enter the bloc.  

  • Date 21.03.2021
  • Print Print this page
  • Permalink https://p.dw.com/p/3qwIL

Advertisement


NEWS

China: Explosion reported at Guangzhou government office 20M AGO

Congo presidential challenger dies of COVID amid election 1H AGO

Australia floods: Thousands evacuated as 


 

More articles

Webpack App