French patrol vessel escorts migrant boat into UK waters before being picked up by Border Force
A French patrol vessel 'escorted a migrant boat' as it floated into UK water towards Dover on Tuesday, as the number of asylum seekers who have arrived across the Channel this year nears 20,000.
Crossings resumed on Tuesday, with pictures showing a dinghy packed with men and boys, some without lifejackets, perched on the sides while their legs dangled in the water.
According to witnesses, a nearby French patrol vessel appeared to be escorting and monitoring the boat as it floated into UK waters towards Dover before it was met by Border Force and later taken ashore at the Kent port.
Provisional Home Office data shows that in 2023 so far 19,801 migrants have arrived in the UK after crossing the Channel.
The pace and volume of crossings slowed over the bank holiday weekend, with just 60 people detected making the journey in one boat on Sunday and no crossings recorded on Saturday or Monday, according to revised Home Office figures.
A total of 175,457 people were waiting for an initial decision on an asylum application in the UK at the end of June 2023, up 44 per cent from 122,213 at the end of June 2022. This was the highest figure since current records began in 2010.
Figures also show the number of asylum seekers waiting more than six months for an initial decision stood at 139,961 at the end of June, up 57 per cent year on year from 89,231 and another record.