Large groups of migrants have clashed with police near Dunkirk, after French authorities frustrated their attempts to send dozens of small boats into the English Channel.
UK and French authorities had been preparing to counter the expected “mass launch of small boats” this weekend, after bad weather prevented the illegal crossings for almost a fortnight.
GB News filmed around the village of Gravelines, near Dunkirk, as large numbers of French police officers descended on the area.
Hundreds of migrants were seen heading towards Gravelines on Friday and overnight Saturday.
But French CRS public order officers were out in force, and managed to slash and deflate at least two of the migrants’ rubber dinghies, as they were being prepared for launch.
Bad weather in the English Channel had prevented any small boats from crossing since the last weekend in October, when more than 1,500 people made it across in 33 inflatables.
He said authorities in the UK and France have been liaising closely in recent days “fully expecting a mass launch of small boats” as the weather improves.
“We’re going to see vastly improved weather conditions this weekend, with the winds dying right down until Monday.
“The recent surge in Channel crossings put immense pressure on the migrant processing centres in Dover and Manston in Kent, as authorities struggled to deal with the numbers arriving.
The bolstered police presence along the French coast between Dunkirk and Calais comes ahead of an impending announcement of a new Channel security deal between Paris and London.
As part of the agreement, the UK government has agreed pay the French an additional £60 million, to help boost the security presence along the French coast.
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