Germany Joins France and UK To Tackle English Channel Migrant Smugglers

TOPSHOT - An aerial view shows dinghies stored in a Port Authority yard, believed to have been used by migrants picked up at sea whilst crossing the English Channel, in Dover, southeast England, on December 21, 2021. - Migrants who crossed the Channel to Britain from northern France are being …
BEN STANSALL/AFP via Getty Images

German Federal Police have joined France and the UK in an operation to tackle the smuggling gangs providing the actual boats carrying the surge of migrant arrivals across the English Channel.

The German Federal Police have stated that people smugglers operating in the north of France have been procuring inflatable boats and motors from Germany along with other equipment, following a question to the federal government by far-left Left Party MP Clara Bünger.

German police have joined police in France and the UK as part of operation “Small Boats,” according to the German Federal Interior Ministry, in an effort to dismantle the criminal gangs smuggling migrants across the English Channel, broadcaster NTV reports.

French authorities estimate that as many as 90 per cent of the boats and engines used by smugglers in English channel crossings have been purchased in Germany originally and then moved through Belgium, as certain boats require identification to be presented in France at the time of purchase.

In November of last year, the major sporting retailer Decathlon announced it would be halting sales of kayaks in northern France, stating that some migrants were attempting to use the small boats to cross the channel, saying the migrants could endanger their own lives by doing so.

Some of those involved in the people-smuggling gangs are said to also be foreign nationals and some are also residents of Germany.

Far-left MP Clara Bünger reacted to the statement from the Federal Police saying that European governments were taking an incorrect approach to the situation in the English Channel.

“The fact that Germany wants to participate in attempts to make the distribution of inflatable boats more difficult in order to prevent crossings from France to Great Britain across the English Channel is a completely wrong approach,” she said and called for legal routes for migrants to be created.

Last year, the UK saw a record 28,381 boat migrants arrive and this year number is expected to grow even further, with Brexit leader Nigel Farage predicting as many as 60,000 arrivals, while the British government has warned the number could be even higher at 65,000.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)



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