UK ‘set to take more Calais child migrants’ as Theresa May pledges £44m funding for France border controls

The UK is set to take in more Calais migrants (Rex)

Britain is expected to commit to taking more Calais migrants – especially unaccompanied children, according to reports.

The BBC states that Theresa May will announce the commitment as part of a historic deal with France.

The Prime Minister is also set to pledge tens of millions of pounds to strengthen Britain’s border controls in France as she hosts summit talks with President Emmanuel Macron.

The Prime Minister will announce the commitment as part of a historic deal with France (Rex)
Britain will especially focus on taking in unaccompanied child migrants from Calais, according to reports (Rex)

Officials said the £44.5 million cash injection would go towards fencing, CCTV and detection technology in Calais and other ports along the Channel.

The move follows reports that Mr Macron has been pressing for Britain to increase its financial contribution as well as a commitment to take more refugees ahead of his first visit to the UK as president.

Mr Macron’s focus on border issues was underlined by a visit to Calais on Tuesday when he vowed there would be no return of the infamous migrant “Jungle” tent city which was cleared by the authorities in 2016.

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UK funding for security in the region is thought to have topped £100 million over the last three years, while more than 750 children have been transferred to Britain since the Jungle was shut down.

British officials said the new UK funding would build on previous security work in the area, pointing to figures showing illegal attempts to enter the UK fell from more than 80,000 in 2015 to just over 30,000 last year.

Up to 7,000 men, women and children lived in the Jungle in Calais before the site was cleared in 2016.

Theresa May is hosting summit talks with French president Emmanuel Macron (Rex)

But hundreds of asylum seekers hoping to cross the Channel remain in the area, more than a year after authorities dismantled the sprawling site.

Officials said the new funding will also help relocate migrants away from Channel ports to stop another similar camp forming.

A Government spokeswoman said: “This is about investing in and enhancing the security of the UK border.

The Calais ‘jungle’ was cleared away in 2016 (Rex)

“Just as we invest in our borders around the rest of the UK, it is only right that we constantly monitor whether there is more we can be doing at the UK border controls in France and Belgium to ensure they are as secure as possible.”

The meeting at the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst will also be an opportunity to discuss what Mrs May has described as “very significant” proposals by the French to loan the Bayeux Tapestry to Britain, where it has never been displayed.

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