French officials say ‘no provable link’ to men arrested over Channel tragedy

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French Prosecutors Leading a Manslaughter Inquiry into the Deaths of 27 People Who Died Trying to Cross the Border Channel have claimed there is “no provable link” between the five men arrested over the tragedy and the capsized boat.

The men were arrested just hours after the boat sank on Wednesday evening and… Gerard Darmanin, FranceAccording to the interior minister, the five were ‘directly linked’ to the disaster.

However, that was refuted by the office of Carole Etienne, the prosecutor in Small, who claimed there was “no provable link”. It is not clear whether the men have been released.

The prosecution’s claims came after a day of political fallout following the disaster, which is considered the worst of its kind in the English Channel.

Both London and Paris blamed each other for the tragedy that took the lives of 17 men, seven women, two boys and a girl. One of the women was pregnant.

French President Emmanuel Macron warned Prime Minister Boris Johnson not to politicize the death of 27.

An account of the talk between the two leaders brought by the Élysee Palace on Wednesday evening stated that Mr Macron had told the Prime Minister that he expected “the British to cooperate fully and refrain from using a tragic situation for political ends.” “. .

During a visit to Croatia on Thursday, Macron himself said that cooperation, not confrontation, is the key to solving the crisis.

“We are going to ask the British for extra help because all these men and these women do not want asylum in France,” Macron said.

“We tell them they can clearly do that, and there are centers in Calais and Dunkirk that they can go to, but we’re going to strengthen them by rescuing them at sea.”

According to Downing Street, both Mr Johnson and Mr Macron said they would “keep all options on the table” and agreed that concerted efforts to prevent these deadly border crossings must be stepped up urgently.

Home Secretary Priti Patel told the House of Commons it was up to France to stop the Channel crossing.

There were two survivors of the tragedy: men of Iraqi and Somali nationality who suffered severe hypothermia at a hospital in Calais on Thursday.

They have suggested to investigators that their boat was hit by a passing container ship before sinking in the Channel.

A corpse that washed up on Sangatte beach Thursday afternoon “may be a missing person” from the capsized boat, a police source said.

He added: “There is evidence that this corpse has been in the water for 24 hours, but it has yet to be confirmed that he was on the boat that capsized.”

If the body belongs to one of the migrants, the death toll would rise to 28, with two survivors.

However, researchers indicated that the numbers may change as more information becomes available, because no one knows exactly how many people were on the boat when it sank.

None of the victims had a passport or identity card and police were unsure of their nationality, Interior Minister Darmanin said.

The lack of documents is common because it makes it more difficult for authorities to return migrants to their country of origin.

Very few of those aboard the deflated boat were wearing life jackets, and most would have succumbed to hypothermia in the extremely cold water before drowning.

Bernard Barron, chairman of the SNSM rescue service in Calais, spoke of ‘group murder’ when he described how the ‘floating death trap’ intended to hold up to 10 people ‘deflated completely when we found it’.

Mr Barron said: ‘Migrants are forced into the boat and their feet are in water and fuel. These are unimaginable circumstances.

“Often only women and children have life jackets, and these boats have no navigation lights or radar receiver.”

Charles Devos, also one of the first SNSM rescuers to reach the victims, said: “We’ve seen the boats get more and more overcrowded.

“The inflatables were only designed for 10 people, but more than 50 of them were packed on board, turning them into floating death traps.

“We always thought that one day or another they would collide with a container ship or a ferry.”

Migrants stand by a tent in a makeshift migrant camp in Loon Beach

(REUTERS)

Rescuers believe the boat left Loon-Plage near Dunkirk on Wednesday morning and collided with the container ship at the border of French territorial waters.

It was the deadliest incident of its kind ever, leading a fisherman to raise the alarm around 2 p.m. after seeing corpses floating in the sea.

Jean-Marc Puissesseau, president of the ports of Calais and Boulogne, also accused the smugglers of being murderers, saying: “The poor migrants came here for months and months and died so close to their dream.”

The tragedy happened as migrants rushed to make the perilous crossing ahead of the winter storms expected to arrive this weekend.

French Interior Minister Mr Darmanin announced that 255 migrants reached the UK on Wednesday.

Among them were about 40 people who were allowed into the sea at Boulogne by a French police car with at least two officers in it who appeared to be doing nothing. They landed in Dungeness around 2:45 PM.

And Natacha Bouchart, the mayor of Calais, said: “I have been warning for weeks and months that this kind of tragedy would inevitably happen.”

She said migrants paid between £2,000 and £6,000 to make the crossing, fueling a ‘mafia-style’ criminal operation more profitable than drugs.

“I say enough is enough,” said Mrs. Bouchart, accusing Britain‘s lax benefit system to encourage immigration.

Ms Bourhart said: “The British government has imposed immigration controls on our territory for the past 20 years. It never had the courage to control this immigration home. You have to react, react quickly to make it all stop.”

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