Keyword: François Gemenne

Why only secure and legal routes for migrants can avoid tragedy in the Channel

By Nejma Brahim
Small dinghies used by migrants to cross the Channel, lined up in the port of Dover. © AFP Small dinghies used by migrants to cross the Channel, lined up in the port of Dover. © AFP

The numbers of migrants attempting hazardous clandestine crossings of the Channel to reach Britain, mostly in overcrowded small dinghies, has soared this year, already reaching well more than double the total of 2019. Now the British government has called on the Royal Navy to assist the country’s Border Force in a move officials say is intended to make the crossings “unviable”. In this interview with Mediapart, François Gemenne, a prominent Belgian political scientist specialised in migratory issues, says that the situation in the Channel is comparable to that in the Mediterranean and warns that “the idea of closing migratory routes is absurd and dangerous” and “will lead to yet more tragedies”.