Number of migrants arriving in UK in small boats nears 10,000 - 2,600 higher than this time last year

19 May 2024, 17:48

The number of small boats arriving in the UK is 2,600 higher than this time last year
The number of small boats arriving in the UK is 2,600 higher than this time last year. Picture: Alamy

By Charlie Duffield

The number of migrants arriving to Britain on small boats crossing the Channel is now about to reach 10,000 people.

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

This is 2,600 more than the total this time last year.

Approximately 103 people arrived yesterday in two boats, meaning the total so far, not including today's arrivals, is 9,803.

This is in comparison to 7,217 by the same date last year, and 8,693 in 2022, 3,112 in 2021 and 1,492 in 2020.

Women and children were pictured amongst others been taken off the first of the boats to reach the shore on Sunday morning.

They were transported to Dover on a Border Force vessel.

A group of people thought to be migrants are brought in to Dover, Kent, from a Border Force vessel following a small boat incident in the Channel. Picture date: Friday May 17, 2024.
A group of people thought to be migrants are brought in to Dover, Kent, from a Border Force vessel following a small boat incident in the Channel. Picture date: Friday May 17, 2024. Picture: Alamy

Labour's shadow immigration minister Stephen Kinnock said: "This milestone is yet more evidence that the Tories' plans are fundamentally failing.

"Thousands of people have crossed the Channel since the Government's Rwanda bill passed, with crossings up a third on last year already.

"The figures also show that criminal smuggler gangs are piling more and more people into each unseaworthy boat, putting lives at even greater risk."

It comes as last week Home Office agents detained the first set of illegal migrants headed for Rwanda.

Armoured Immigration Enforcement officials participated in several dramatic dawn raids across the UK, to recruit asylum seekers who made it across the Channel in small boats.

Read More: Scammers target victims of Devon water crisis, as South West Water boosts payouts after backlash

Read More: Exact dates weather to hit 30C with 'big and historical heatwave' expected

London, UK. 8 October 2023. Stephen Kinnock MP  speaking at an SME4 Labour fringe event, during the Labour Party Conference in Liverpool. Photo credit should read: Matt Crossick/Empics/Alamy Live News
Labour's shadow immigration minister Stephen Kinnock said: "This milestone is yet more evidence that the Tories' plans are fundamentally failing.". Picture: Alamy

Groups of men were seen being handcuffed before being taken to one of seven immigration removal centres, and were kept there until being deported to Africa.

Under the codename 'Operation Vector', approximately 800 immigration agents were involved in the effort, which will involve flights taking off in nine to eleven weeks, with 2,143 asylum seekers targeted.

Asylum seekers who have made the journey have been receiving Home Office letters communicating that they risk being flown to Rwanda as they failed to find asylum in the first "safe country" they visited.

The new law passed through Parliament last month and is intended to ensure asylum seekers will be put on a one-way flight to Kigali.

File photo of Home Secretary James Cleverly arriving in Downing Street, London, for a Cabinet meeting. James Cleverly said that a 'concerted effort'
Asylum seekers who have made the journey have been receiving Home Office letters communicating that they risk being flown to Rwanda as they failed to find asylum in the first "safe country" they visited. . Picture: Alamy

But Britain's Supreme Court says Rwanda is an unsafe country to send migrants to.

Today a Home Office spokesman said: "The unacceptable number of people who continue to cross the Channel demonstrates exactly why we must get flights to Rwanda off the ground as soon as possible.

"We continue to work closely with French police who are facing increasing violence and disruption on their beaches as they work tirelessly to prevent these dangerous, illegal and unnecessary journeys.

"Last year they stopped 26,000 people from reaching our shores.

"We remain committed to building on the successes that saw arrivals drop by more than a third last year, including tougher legislation and agreements with international partners, in order to save lives and stop the boats."

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Labour is said to be drafting options for wealth taxes

Labour 'draws up plans for wealth taxes' in bid to 'unlock' funds for public services

Nigel Farage said that the West had provoked Putin into invading Ukraine

'We gave Putin an excuse': Nigel Farage says the West provoked Russia into invading Ukraine

Just Stop Oil plans major disruption to summer holidays with private jet stunt just the start

Two charged after Just Stop Oil protesters sprayed private jets with orange paint at Stansted Airport

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak

Tories raise less than £300k in second week of election campaign, as over three-quarters of all donations go to Labour

File photo of passengers boarding an Easyjet plane

Chaos as Easyjet kicks 26 men off flight headed from the UK to Portugal for 'disruptive behaviour'

Bardia Shojeifard

'Outwardly normal' teen killer with 'worrying interest in knives' posed with huge blade before murdering Alfie Lewis, 15

Police were called to a property at Shorncliffe Road shortly after 3pm on Sunday

Pictured: Baby girl mauled to death in Coventry dog attack at family home

Public schoolboy guilty of attempted murder after vicious clawhammer attack on sleeping staff and students ahead of 'zombie apocalypse'

Public schoolboy obsessed by 'zombie apocalypse' guilty of claw hammer attack on sleeping staff and students

PC Idominik Efeotor raised the issue at the annual State of London debate

'The people who investigate the officers are the problem’: Black Met officer hits out at disproportionate treatment in disciplinary process

Salisbury Novichok victim Dawn Sturgess

Former spy and daughter may give evidence at Salisbury poisonings inquiry

Rishi Sunak has urged voters not to let Labour 'waltz into office'

'Don't let Labour waltz into office', Sunak tells voters as Brits may not 'ever' be able to get them out of power

Exclusive
Starmer says eco mob 'needs to feel the full force of the law' as he slams 'pathetic' Just Stop Oil

Starmer says 'pathetic' eco mob 'needs to feel the full force of the law' as two charged for private jet stunt

The M6

Drivers face misery as major motorway closed for three days next week, sending cars on 90 minute diversion

Kings College Hospital NHS Trust is one of two London Hospitals affected by the hackers

Russian hackers publish NHS patients' details and blood test results online after London hospital cyber attack

Bardia Shojaeifard killed Alfie Lewis

'Outwardly normal' boy, 15, who murdered teenager Alfie Lewis named for first time as judge lifts anonymity

Helicopters, sniffer dogs and 4x4s have been deployed in the search for Jay Slater.

Helicopters and sniffer dogs deployed as Spanish authorities focus on new terrain in search for missing Jay Slater