Saturday, March 2, 2024
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Rishi Sunak names three countries UK will target to stop migrants getting to Britain

The Prime Minister will travel to Granada, Spain, on Thursday to urge politicians “to protect Europe’s borders from criminal gangs and face down Russian aggression”.

.Confirming Britain will share more intelligence with Bulgaria, Serbia and Belgium, Mr Sunak will call on European leaders to take “more coordinated action “to address rising levels of illegal migration to Europe.”

The Daily Express can reveal Britain will be deploying new technology to detect migrants hiding in lorries in Belgium.

It will be used at popular freight truck stops.

And new maritime “sensors” will be used for the first time to detect small boats, such as migrant dinghies, speedboats and yachts travelling across the Channel.

Speaking ahead of the European Political Community summit, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said: “Levels of illegal migration to mainland Europe are the highest they have been in nearly a decade. With thousands of people dying at sea, propelled by people smugglers, the situation is both immoral and unsustainable.“We cannot allow criminal gangs to decide who comes to Europe’s shores.

“When it comes to facing down the threat from Putin, confronting the risks and opportunities of AI or dealing with illegal migration, there is strength in unity.

“These issues transcend national borders and require creative Europe-wide solutions – that is what I will be discussing with my fellow leaders at the European Political Community summit in Spain today.

”Some 250,000 migrants have reached Europe this year, with more than 133,000 arriving in Italy alone. Belgium, Serbia and Bulgaria are all key transit points used by smugglers trafficking hundreds of thousands of migrants across the continent every year. The deal with Belgrade will see British prosecutors help the Serbian authorities build cases against the smuggling gangs operating in their country.

Bulgaria has become a key point of EU entry both for gangs bringing in boats and engines from Turkey and for migrants after a crackdown on Aegean Sea crossings into Greece.

British experts will help the Bulgarian authorities build cases, intercept more engines and boat equipment, share more intelligence and train border guards.

This work has already begun, but work is expected to intensify over the coming weeks.

Mr Sunak will also renew calls for European leaders to provide Ukraine with air defence, fighter jets and long-range missiles.

New intelligence has suggested that Russia may use sea mines to sink cargo ships in the Black Sea.

Russian attacks in the last few months have destroyed enough grain to feed more than one million people for a year.

Downing Street said talks will also focus on efforts to end Putin’s blockade of vital Black Sea grain shipments.



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