Media Reveals Content of French Coast Guard's Mayday Call After Migrant Boat Capsized in Channel
"Mayday relay, mayday relay. This is Gris-Nez emergency. Approximately 15 men overboard. All ships in this area are requested to proceed to this area, to take contact and report any information to the Gris-Nez emergency coordinating this operation", the radio operator said as per Sky News.
"I saw the blow-up boat had really deflated. Was it a valve that came loose or did it hit an object? You never know but I don't think it was a collision. Boats that transport 20 people, we find them with around 50 people on them", he said.
"It's very, very shocking, when you saw all these people plunged into the water, drowning, with no means of being able to be rescued. Unfortunately we were only able to recover the dead people", he said.
They Are Human Beings, Not Political Footballs
However, since the deal was signed Britain has repeatedly accused France of not doing enough to prevent migrants arriving in France from later crossing into Britain. Paris, for its part, said London should deter people from entering the country in the first place.
According to local media outets, over 25,000 migrants have come to the United Kingdom this year, a three-fold increase compared to the number of illegal arrivals last year.
Following the tragedy, Prime Minister Boris Johnson wrote a letter to French President Emmanuel Macron in which he outlined several steps to prevent such accidents in the future:
Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has since harshly criticised UK PM Boris Johnson and French President Emmanuel Macron for engaging in a blame game, emphasising that both countries should address the root causes of migration.
"Those seeking refuge from dreadful conditions are human beings, not political footballs. They're driven to smugglers out of desperation and lack of humanitarian routes. This, and root causes, need (to be) addressed if such tragedies aren't to be endlessly repeated", she said.