Po­lice ‘foil 1,000 bids’ from Calais mi­grants to reach United King­dom

The China Post - - INTERNATIONAL -

French author­i­ties faced more than 1,000 at­tempts by mi­grants camped out in the port of Calais to reach the Chan­nel tun­nel overnight, po­lice sources told AFP Fri­day.

“More than 1,000 at­tempts were thwarted last night, with around 30 ar­rests,” the source said, adding there were no re­ports of mi­grants in­jured in their bid to en­ter the un­der­sea tun­nel link­ing France and the UK.

Another po­lice source spoke of “1,400 in­cur­sions” be­tween 10 p.m. lo­cal time Thurs­day (2000 GMT) and 7 a.m. (0500 GMT) Fri­day.

While be­ing un­able to con­firm the fig­ures, a spokesman for Euro­tun­nel said there had been “much less dis­rup­tion” since an ex­tra 120 riot po­lice poured into Calais this week to bol­ster the 300-strong po­lice con­tin­gent al­ready sta­tioned in the city.

At least four coaches of riot po­lice were on Fri­day morn­ing guard­ing the en­trance to the tun­nel, where the sit­u­a­tion was calm.

A po­lice source said that, while the re­in­force­ments had helped, “the pres­sure of the mi­grants is still there” and the “sit­u­a­tion re­mains dif­fi­cult to deal with.”

How­ever, this source said there had been far fewer mi­grants man­ag­ing to get onto the Euro­tun­nel plat­forms and clam­ber on the train shut­tles go­ing to Eng­land.

The sit­u­a­tion ap­pears to have calmed in the past two days, af­ter mi­grants made more than 2,000 daily at­tempts to breach the de­fenses ear­lier in the week.

One man died in the

early hours of Wed­nes­day, ap­par­ently crushed by a lorry as he tried to make it into the tun­nel.

The cri­sis has strained

rela- tions be­tween Paris and Lon­don.

The Bri­tish gov­ern­ment is poised to hold emer­gency talks later Fri­day on the is­sue.

AFP

Gen­darmes driv­ing vans es­cort mi­grants out of the vicin­ity of the Euro­tun­nel ter­mi­nal early in Co­quelles, near Calais, north­ern France, Fri­day, July 31.

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