Rishi Sunak to use Cop27 to raise migrant crisis with French President

Ahead of the conference, the PM said the issue of small boats crossing the Channel was his ‘key priority’.

Alana Calvert
Monday 07 November 2022 07:09 GMT
Rishi Sunak is expected to raise the migrant crisis with his French counterpart when the two meet in Egypt today (Jonathan Brady/PA)
Rishi Sunak is expected to raise the migrant crisis with his French counterpart when the two meet in Egypt today (Jonathan Brady/PA) (PA Wire)

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Louise Thomas

Louise Thomas

Editor

Rishi Sunak is expected to raise the migrant crisis with his French counterpart when the two meet for the first time in Egypt on Monday.

Ahead of Cop27, the Prime Minister told The Sun newspaper his “key priority” at the UN climate change conference was resolving the crisis of small boats crossing the Channel.

“I have spent more time working on that in the last few days than anything else other than the autumn statement,” he told the newspaper.

According to the paper, Britain and France are “close” to allowing Border Force staff on the beaches, with the PM insisting he will continue to push for a deal with Emmanuel Macron.

“We have to get a grip, do a range of things to stop it from happening, return people who shouldn’t be here in the first place.”

The Times reported the Prime Minister will press Mr Macron to sign a deal to reduce crossings while at the summit.

Mr Sunak also reportedly defended his decision to keep Suella Braverman as Home Secretary, telling The Sun: “She’s completely focused.”

Deputy Prime Minister and Justice Secretary Dominic Raab said Mr Sunak is set to revive the British Bill of Rights as part of his Government’s strategy to deal with the small boats crisis.

He said the legislation – giving the UK courts supremacy over the European Court of Human Rights – will return to Parliament “in the coming weeks”.

The Bill was shelved by Liz Truss when she became prime minister in September after Government sources warned it was “unlikely to progress in its current form”.

The proposed legislation is unlikely to provide a quick fix though as it is also highly controversial and the Government is likely to face a tough battle – particularly in the House of Lords – to get it on to the statute book.

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