Six dead and more than 50 people rescued after migrant boat sinks in Channel
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Six people have died and more than 50 people have been resuced after a small migrant boat sank in the Channel on Saturday morning. French authorities have said around 50 people have been rescued from the water following the incident.
A joint operation between two British ships and several French boats were involved in the search and rescue operation in the early hours of Saturday morning. A number of people were seen in Dover being taken off a lifeboat on stretchers, but the extent of their injuries were unclear.
The RNLI has said a lifeboat crew was launched just before 4am, with France’s Maritime Prefecture of the Channel and the North Sea adding that they received information from a patrol boat that a migrant vessel was sinking off Sangatte.
Six people had previously been recovered in a “serious condition”, with one person taken by helicopter to Calais hospital before being pronounced dead. Home Secretary Suella Braverman will chair a meeting with Border Force later today.
Shadow immigration minister Stephen Kinnock said the latest incident was an “appalling, deeply shocking tragedy”.
“We must stop these crossings and defeat the criminal people smugglers. There can be no more headline-chasing gimmicks or madcap schemes that just make everything worse,” he wrote on Twitter.
On Friday, August 10, 15,826 people were reported to have crossed the Channel in boats this year alone.