Up to 100 extra security guards are to be sent to patrol the Channel Tunnel terminal in the latest move to get the migrant crisis at Calais under control.
The Government also announced that British immigration officers and French police are to work side by side at Eurotunnel’s control room at Coquelles, making it easier to respond quickly to attempts by migrants to break into the tunnel.
Philip Hammond, the Foreign Secretary, set out the moves last night after a lengthy meeting of Cobra, Whitehall’s emergency committee.
He insisted the Government was getting a grip on the situation, as the number of illegal migrants trying to cross the Channel had fallen in recent days.
Mr Hammond, who chaired the meeting in David Cameron’s absence, said: “We have taken a number of measures in collaboration with the French authorities and Eurotunnel which are already having an effect – and over the next day or two I would expect to have an even greater effect.”
He added that work to erect huge new fences was proceeding on schedule, which would further enhance security.
His comments came as the Prime Minister, who is on holiday, was challenged by the Road Haulage Association to visit Calais to experience the chaos being endured by lorry drivers waiting to return to the UK.
Its chief executive, Richard Burnett said: “Without witnessing the mayhem at Calais first hand, neither the Prime Minister, nor his advisers, can fully grasp the severity of the situation.”
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