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Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Record Number of Migrants Cross English Channel in a Single Day

At least 430 migrants crossed the English Channel to reach the United Kingdom on July 19, setting a new daily record, the Home Office said.

About 50 people, including women and young children, were also seen arriving on a beach in Dungeness after crossing the Channel in a single boat.

The record number of arrivals came after eight boats carrying 241 people reached the UK over  the weekend.

The arrivals came as the UK parliament is considering a new asylum legislation that could hand a prison sentence of up to four years for migrants attempting to make an unauthorized entry, such as crossing the Channel on a boat.

“The British people have had enough of open borders and uncontrolled migration,” Home Secretary Priti Patel said in a speech to the parliament.

According to Patel, the Nationality and Borders Bill “will deter illegal entry into the UK” and “will remove more easily from the UK those with no right to be here.”

Refugee organizations have branded the bill as “anti-refugee.”

Refugee Council Chief Executive Enver Solomon said that treating the migrants “as criminals” was a “huge waste of taxpayers’ money” and a “brutal, cruel, and cold-hearted” move by the government.

“The UK risks breaching commitments under the Refugee Convention that clearly protect the universal right to seek asylum and for refugees to access basic rights,” the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in the UK said on Twitter.

The bill will continue to provide asylum for those who make authorized entries, such as arriving on an airplane with a travel visa.

According to BBC News, nearly 8,000 people in about 345 boats have reached the UK this year.

The previous daily record for migrant arrivals was at 416 set last September.

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