According to Government plans, asylum seekers can fly to Ghana or Rwanda to avoid Channel crossings by migrants. This was the claim made today. 

According to reports, ministers are preparing proposals that would allow illegal immigrants in the UK to be sent overseas for processing and resettlement.

According to The Times: Priti Patel, the Home Secretary, and Liz Truss (the Foreign Secretary), are discussing ‘outsourcing’ asylum processes to other countries.

Although the UK would be required to pay another country for the responsibility, no other nation has yet to agree to this arrangement. 

Although it was first reported that Albania was one of the potential destinations, talks have reportedly collapsed. 

Downing Street would not be drawn on the plans at lunchtime as the Prime Minister’s Official Spokesman said it was ‘not helpful’ to discuss negotiations with countries. 

According to the spokesperson, “This is an international challenge. It’s right we discuss with international partners how to fix the broken refugee system. But I won’t get into the details of those talks.”

Boris Johnson activated Britain’s Armed Forces to make it possible for migrants to be processed ‘offshore. Channel to address the crisis of small boat crossings

Following a major change of tactics by the Prime Minister, operations will be taken over by the Ministry of Defence within weeks.

Royal Navy vessels, RAF support and Royal Navy boats are scheduled to deploy on patrol in UK territory waters under a policy blitz dubbed Operation Red Meat’ that Johnson hopes will shift the tides of Tory disquiet toward his premiership.

The UK Border Force will now be under military command to fight people traffickers for the first time.

Officials are hopeful that Armed Forces participation will prove to be significant deterrent.

Sources in government said the move would bring about a ‘demonstrable shift’ in Channel crisis. Last year, a record 28300 migrants arrived in Britain from France. 

Home Secretary Priti Patel and Foreign Secretary Liz Truss are in talks about 'outsourcing' the asylum process to other countries, according to The Times

According to The Times, Priti Patel, Home Secretary and Liz Truss, Foreign Secretary are currently in discussions about “outsourcing” the asylum process to countries other than India.

Boris Johnson has activated Britain's Armed Forces to tackle the small boat crossings crisis in the Channel

Boris Johnson, British Armed Forces commander has activated Britain to combat the Channel small boat crossings crisis

Royal Navy vessels and RAF support are expected to be deployed on patrol in UK territorial waters in a bid to tackle the migrant crisis in the Channel

Royal Navy vessels, RAF support and Royal Navy boats are likely to deploy to UK territorial waters for patrolling in order to address the migrant crisis.

A group of migrants pictured using an inflatable dinghy to make the journey across the Channel to reach the UK in November

An image of a group of migrants using an inflatable boat to cross the Channel and reach the UK.

Operation Red Meat – Boris’s attempt to regain command 

Operation Red Meat is anticipated to contain:

  • To end party-row drinking, a No 10 workplace “booze ban” will be implemented. Boris Johnson has been drafting Downing Street rules that limit the consumption of alcohol at official events. 
  • Clearout of the No. 10 staff involved in party row. Martin Reynolds (Mr Johnson’s principal private secretary) who sent the “bring your own alcohol” invitation to the Downing Street party at the first lockdown and Dan Rosenfield, chief of staff, were among the people seen as being in danger.
  • A freeze in the BBC’s two-year licence fee will be implemented to reduce household debt. Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries is expected to confirm that the cost of an annual licence will remain at £159 until 2024.
  • Push to reduce NHS wait lists. Last week, six million people were on the hospital waiting lists in England. In December, nearly 27 per cent of patients at A&E waited more than four hours to be seen – a record high. 
  • To help people out of work and to reduce unemployment, extra money is available for skills training and jobs. In the three-months to October, the unemployment rate was 4.2%. This is down from the 4.3 percent recorded in September.
  • Plan B Covid limitations, including the wearing of masks at shops or on public transportation and vaccine passports to large events on January 26, should be removed. 
  • Publication of Levelling Up’s white paper. Michael Gove is currently working on the document. It will outline the government’s plan to make neglected communities more liveable. The document is due to arrive in February’s first week.
  • Last night it was announced that the Channel’s military would be called in to combat illegal immigration. The defense chiefs will be responsible for stopping dangerous crossings, which have reached record highs this year. Royal Navy ships could be deployed to support the Border Forces’ fleet.

The move was welcomed by Tory MPs last night. This was Johnson’s first big announcement in an effort to get his premiership on the right track after the scandals surrounding ‘Partygate’ that rocked his government.

A Whitehall source stated that the command of Border Force which monitors Channel incidents will be transferred to the Ministry of Defence.

“This change will occur by the middle of February or the end the month. In a matter of weeks, there will be an obvious change in the way that Channel operations are conducted. This makes perfect sense.

When the crossings from France were only few thousand per annum, Ms Patel was first requesting military participation in summer 2020.

A source at the Home Office said last night that although they have been pushing for it since so long, “there has been massive resistance in other departments of government to take action.” 

“Priti had been asking for military defense of UK territorial waters from August 2020, and the PM agreed that there was a need to change our operational position after months of negotiations in Whitehall.

When asked if it might mean that military assets are deployed to the Channel, Whitehall sources said, “That’s ultimately a military question, but it’s likely it does.” It will also mean more military personnel.

The worst disaster since the outbreak of crisis saw 27 migrants including children drowning on France’s side of Channel. Their deaths were one of at least 39 who lost their lives while trying to cross the channel in 2021.

A 20-year-old Sudanese national lost his life trying to get to the UK on Friday.

Natalie Elphicke from Dover said, “Everyone knows that the Royal Navy rules over the waves.” It is clear that Britain cares about stopping these dangerous crossings.

“Too many people have lost their lives in the last months, and this crisis continues too long.”

This latest development indicates a decline in confidence within the UK Border Force at the top echelons, Home Office.

A trade union representing 80 percent of Border Force personnel threatened to strike earlier this month over Ms Patel’s plans to return migrants.

Public and Commercial Services Union referred to that portion of the Nationality and Borders Bill as “morally reprobable”.

There is a possibility that the Navy will use the so-called pushback tactics described in the Bill to take over military participation in Channel.

According to a Whitehall source, the strike threat by trade unions “has certainly helped raise the level of military involvement.” 

This will allow Border Force officers to focus on the New Plan for Immigration measures, which include a dual-track asylum system and new processing centers.

A review will be conducted by the Home Office of Border Force officers and Immigration Enforcement officers to determine their ‘powers, capabilities.

Officials from the MoD want HM Coastguard included in their remit on Channel. It’s not yet clear how the RNLI will be involved.

Currently, military deployments to the Channel are limited to surveillance equipment.

Lydd, in Kent 25 miles south of Dover is home to a nerve center that controls Army Watchkeeper drones. These are high-definition infrared and optical sensors equipped with the ability to track down migrants.

The £6million Watchkeepers, which have a 36ft wingspan, are operated by 47th Regiment Royal Artillery. These Watchkeepers can stay in the air for as long as 14 hours.

HMS Mersey temporarily remained in Dover Strait under an agreement between the MoD and then-Home Secretary Sajid Javid. 

While the 260ft-long offshore patrol vessel was being deployed, two Border Force cutters (Seeker and Protector) were returned from the Mediterranean during the Channel crisis’ early days.