Calais migrant crisis: UK streets are 'not paved with gold' - Theresa May signs £7m deal to stop migrants entering Britain

UK Government will offer migrants funds for flights back to their home countries as part of the declaration between France and Britain

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Migrants risking their lives by trying to cross the Channel from Calais should know that the UK's streets are "not paved with gold," Government ministers have said.

James Brokenshire, the Immigration minister, made the warning as he accompanied Home Secretary Theresa May to the French port town to sign a £7 million initiative with the French government in a bid to alleviate the growing migrant crisis.

The deal agreed by Ms May and her French counterpart, Bernard Cazeneuve, includes a commitment of £3.5 million per year from the British government to help the French manage the increasing number of migrants living in make-shift accommodation in Calais.

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Migrants hide under a freight car in Coquelles near Calais pm on their way to the Eurotunnel on 12th August

It includes a commitment by the UK to offer migrants funds for flights back to their home countries, as well as contributing translators to provide refugees with a more realistic sense of life in the UK.

The declaration states that the two countries are "unified" in their response to a "migratory phenomenon without precedent".

Mr Brokenshire said the aim of the agreement was to convey the message to migrants that "the streets of the UK are not paved with gold" and "it is not a land of milk and honey".

Up to 5,000 migrants are estimated to be in Calais. A number have died attempting to cross to Britain.

The deal includes commitments to step up security to identify those vulnerable to trafficking and the UK Government will reinforce capacity for processing asylum claims, with facilities being set up away from Calais.

 

The declaration signed by ministers of the two countries states: "Europe is experiencing unprecedented pressure from migration. At key frontiers this phenomenon presents a serious concern.

"Our joint approach rests on securing the border, identifying and safeguarding the vulnerable, preserving access to asylum for those who need it, and giving no quarter to those who have no right to be here or who break the law.

"We want to eliminate any sense, particularly amongst criminal gangs exploiting migrants, of there being value in bringing people to Calais."

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