In its unfortunate legal response to the problem of irregular immigration, which in the UK is less than a fraction of what it does in other parts of Europe, Boris Johnson’s government has shuffled victims and torturers into the same bag. It has shown that it has a lot of diplomacy to do if it hopes to win the cooperation of neighboring countries, especially France. 2021 ended with Record numbers of migrants intercepted while trying to cross the English Channel To get to the British shores. Approximately 30,000 people. Strengthening control over the land routes of communication with the continent, which until recently were the usual arrivals of irregular migration, stimulated the maritime movement of people. The Johnson government is right, in the Nationalities and Borders Bill, to toughen penalties against the criminal gangs that enrich themselves with this human tragedy. But it is completely wrong to spread suspicion about the majority of immigrants in general, and thus fuel the xenophobic rhetoric that lit the torch of Brexit. The Home Office of Priti Patel, a politician the daughter of Indian-Uganda parents, classifies the new arrivals as “economic migrants” and blames them for the current collapse in the asylum and refugee system. British authorities are playing on the confusing and provocative idea that those who arrive at their shores – young, male, strong and able to pay for the traffickers’ exorbitant journey – thus rob defenseless women and children of the chance to protect themselves. Statistics refute this bias. More than 60% of Iranians, Syrians, Iraqis and Afghans who arrived in the UK were able to demonstrate their need for legal protection, compared to an average of 50% of the remaining nationalities.
London would like more control over the hundreds of kilometers of French coastline, and blames Paris for not doing enough to stem the flow of migrants. The blame only added to the misunderstanding between Johnson and Macron. The French president blames the British prime minister for his lack of seriousness. Downing Street wishes it could automatically return intercepted immigrants from that country to France, and even send its soldiers to patrol the continent’s shores. The British government, which has always chosen to stay out of the migration crisis that hit the European Union in 2015, now wants quick and useful solutions. He did not yet understand that this was the main reason for his current frustration, and that there was no easy answer to a complex tragedy.
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