Hundreds of Illegal Migrants Enter UK Amid Coronavirus Lockdown
Boatloads of illegals continue to cross English Channel and land in Britain
Hundreds of illegal migrants have breached the UK's borders and entered the country since coronavirus lockdowns started last month.
At least 550 migrants have landed in the United Kingdom illegally via boat after crossing the English Channel from the beaches of France since lockdown measures were put in place.
The illegal crossings have all occurred since both French and British governments first imposed nationwide lockdowns to fight the spread of COVID-19 roughly one month ago.
Since British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced lockdown measures on March 23, no less than 481 migrants are known to have illegally made their way across the English Channel, recently-released figures from the UK’s Home Office have revealed.
During the previous week, another 69 migrants reached British shores, after France was placed on lockdown on March 14.
So far, nine cases of coronavirus have been recorded at the migrant camps in Calais and Dunkirk, Northern France.
The former general secretary of the Immigration Services Union (ISU), Lucy Moreton, said in a statement: “On a purely statistical basis, someone has brought it over.”
The former immigration chief also told The Times that authorities aren’t testing the illegal migrants when they first arrive in the country.
Moreton also revealed that migrants are being released into the public and rehoused in local council areas without being tested for COVID-19 first.
The Home Office claims that tests are being carried out on newly arrived migrants who show symptoms of having been infected with the deadly coronavirus.
However, given the state that migrants often arrive in after crossing the Channel, it’s virtually impossible accurately spot symptoms of the virus, Moreton noted.
"When a Border Force vessel picks these people up, there’s no way of assessing symptoms,” Moreton said.
"They are cold, wet and often seasick."
Earlier this month, roughly 1,500 to 2,000 migrants were reported to be living in makeshift camps in Calais and Dunkirk, in the hope of reaching the UK illegally via the English Channel, according to Czech news portal Novinky.
The rush on the border is a last-ditch effort to avoid being moved to one of France's refugee camps.
To avoid being transferred elsewhere in France or Europe, they choose to flee to the UK, mostly on boats or hidden in trucks.
Because conditions at the camps in Calais and Dunkirk continue to worsen, more illegal Channel crossings are likely to continue.