Calais Crisis (January 2016)

The problems in Calais are clearly symptomatic of a wider issue that needs to be tackled at source and in transit countries. I know that the Government is clear that the link between people making the treacherous journey across the Mediterranean and achieving settlement in Europe must be broken, and that we must target and disrupt the organised criminal gangs who profit from this.

France is already contributing £10 million a year to cover the costs of humanitarian support, and with financial contributions from the EU, a day centre has been set up providing bathroom facilities and 2,000 meals a day. The French are also encouraging migrants to access humanitarian protection in France. 
A dedicated law enforcement team of around 90 officers has been established to tackle organised immigration crime in the UK, the Mediterranean and Africa. It will pursue and disrupt organised crime groups and use every to smash the gangs' criminal operations. The UK is also providing practical and financial support to other EU countries, including help to process newly arrived illegal immigrants and distinguish between economic migrants and genuine refugees.
It is essential to stop this problem at source, and the UK has a proud record of providing aid to alleviate poverty and suffering overseas. £900 million has been committed to help people displaced by the Syrian crisis, making us the second largest bilateral donor in the world in responding to that humanitarian crisis. New aid initiatives totalling £217 million in Africa will go to help approximately 2.5 million refugees and vulnerable people in the countries that the majority of migrants are travelling from or through. This is part of over £4 billion the Government has already committed to improving economic development, governance and security in African states as well as improving access to basic services.

January 2016