France calls for negotiations between the European Union and Britain in the refugee dispute

In the refugee dispute between France and Great Britain, the French government called for the start of negotiations on an immigration agreement between the European Union and Great Britain. This is necessary because the issue was not regulated in the Brexit agreement, Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said on Saturday during a visit to the French North Sea coast. Accordingly, France will put the issue on the agenda of its Presidency of the Council of the European Union from January.

The French minister also urged the UK government to “fulfill its promise” and provide funding to combat smugglers on the French coast. As part of a deal reached in July, Great Britain agreed to fund border security in France in the amount of €62.7 million this year and next. According to British media reports, British Home Secretary Priti Patel threatened to withhold the funds in September due to the record number of migrants arriving from France via the English Channel.

In the first eight months of this year, a total of 15,400 people attempted to cross the English Channel, which, according to French Coast Guard statistics, is a 50 percent increase over the entire previous year. But according to Darmanin, the Coast Guard has grounded nearly two-thirds of all boats launched in the past three months. Before that, it was only half.

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